Multiculturalism

Clay Shirky clay@shirky.com
Mon, 22 Oct 2001 20:48:59 -0400 (EDT)


> 1. We would probably all agree that complete segregation of cultures is a
> bad thing...
> 
> 2. We would probably all agree that having only a single fully-blended
> culture is a bad thing...

All of us except me, you must mean. 

I think that treating culture as a first-order phenomenon is in and of
itself harmful. I don't subscribe to either of these points of view,
because they say nothing about the constraints placed on individuals.

If either of these (or any other statement targetting particular
cultural outcomes) were cost-free, I might feel differently, but there
is no such cost-free world, so I think the same thing about culture
that I think about economies -- remove the barriers you can, and get
out of the way, because all of us are smarter than any of us, and
central planning is to be avoided where possible.

-clay