The logic of multiculturalism and Korean democracy

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In this article, I attempt to construct a normative framework of Korean multiculturalism in the Confucian public-societal context of Korean democracy by focusing on the political implications of the claim to cultural rights (so-called 'logic' of multiculturalism) and cultural pluralism that it is likely to entail for Korean democracy. After examining the logic of multiculturalism that often puts multiculturalism in tension with liberal democracy, I turn to Will Kymlicka's account of immigrant multiculturalism that resolves the potential tension between multiculturalism and liberal democracy in a liberal way. Then, I construct a normative framework of Korean multiculturalism in a way that a decent multicultural society can be established on the same public-cultural ground on which Korean democracy has matured in the past two decades.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)353-368
Number of pages16
JournalCitizenship Studies
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Jun

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author is grateful to Bumsoo Kim, Brooke Ackerly, Fred Dallmayr and Youngmin Kim for their valuable comments on the earlier version of the manuscript. Special thanks are due to Philip J. Ivanhoe for his extensive written comments. The research for this article is supported by City University of Hong Kong’s Start-Up Grant for new staff (Project No.: 7200238).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Political Science and International Relations


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