Thursday, August 04, 2005

The Carnival of Culture

The writer Hanif Kureishi wrote an excellent article in The Guardian today about the stultifying education of British Muslim youth. He's such an amazing writer, and the world he describes is rather scary in my opinion. Just as any closed-minded, monocultural, religious dogma is scary to me. What's also scary is the patronising Western response that can only worsen the situation. Read the piece here: The Carnival of Culture

Here's the nutshell: "You can't ask people to give up their religion; that would be absurd. Religions may be illusions, but these are important and profound illusions. And they will modify as they come into contact with other ideas. This is what an effective multiculturalism is: not a superficial exchange of festivals and food, but a robust and committed exchange of ideas - a conflict that is worth enduring, rather than a war.

"When it comes to teaching the young, we have the human duty to inform them that there is more than one book in the world, and more than one voice, and that if they wish to have their voices heard by others, everyone else is entitled to the same thing. These children deserve better than an education that comes from liberal guilt."

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