The introduction of multiculturalism in Canada and Australia, 1960s-1970s

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This article compares the emergence of a policy of multiculturalism in Canada and Australia between the 1960s and 1970s. It charts the rise of the policy in the two countries through the adoption of a philosophy of multiculturalism as the basis of their national identities. There is a distinction between philosophy and policy: a multicultural policy emerged out of a philosophy of multiculturalism. Furthermore, a philosophy of multiculturalism replaced the new nationalism as the foundation of the national identities of both English-speaking Canada and Australia. The abandonment of the White Canada and White Australia policies and the adoption of non-discriminatory immigration policies in both countries were also of importance in the emergence of a policy of multiculturalism. There are many similarities in the Canadian and Australian experiences. However, the major differences are explained by the presence of the French-Canadians in Canada and the early non-British migration that Canada received in the late-nineteenth century compared with Australia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)483-503
Number of pages21
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2012


  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Immigration
  • Integration
  • Multiculturalism
  • Nationalism


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