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Diversity and multiculturalism in Japan: what is called into question?

Abstract

This study explores the different ways in which the notion of multiculturalism in Japan has been influenced by various social and historical trajectories. Since the Japanese government started to promote “internationalization” in the 1980’s, slogans such as “international exchange,” “cultural exchange,” and “understanding of other cultures” have become the most popular expressions among policy makers and educators. This article demonstrates that the notion of Japanese multiculturalism is intricately and deeply embedded in the society, culture, and education system of Japan. It also points out that this particularly Japanese style of multiculturalism excludes some immigrants who have lived in Japan for generations, and that this exclusion is not the result of ideological products, but rather the effect of multiple power relations.

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Correspondence to Jie Qi.

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Qi, J. Diversity and multiculturalism in Japan: what is called into question?. Educ Res Policy Prac 10, 105–114 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10671-010-9097-y

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10671-010-9097-y

Keywords

  • Multiculturalism
  • Diversity
  • Social attitudes
  • Language education