George Crowder, Geoffrey Brahm Levey

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Multiculturalism is the idea that cultural diversity within a single society is desirable and should be given public recognition in the form of minority cultural rights or state accommodation of cultural minorities. It may seem that such a view connects readily with forms of relativism, in particular cultural relativism, according to which no single culture is ethically superior to any other. But such a picture is too simple. Much multicultural political theory and practice is explicitly based on liberal values. On this view, multiculturalism should be seen not as a form of relativism but as a fundamentally universalist doctrine, although one that welcomes a certain range of legitimate cultural diversity. There are also some influential justifications of multiculturalism, liberal and non-liberal, that may appear to embrace cultural relativism but which, in fact, do not.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Relativism
EditorsMartin Kusch
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherRoutledge, Taylor & Francis
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781351052306
ISBN (Print)9781138484283
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Publication series

NameRoutledge Handbooks in Philosophy


  • multiculturalism
  • relativism
  • culture
  • diversity
  • autonomy
  • liberalism
  • Value pluralism


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