Canadian Multiculturalism and Social Fabric of Modern Society


Multiculturalism as a Global Phenomenon

Multiculturalism is overwhelmingly an attractive global phenomenon and it was enhanced  in the early 1970’s by the late Pierre Eliott Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada. A francophone academic and nationalist, late Trudeau’s policies and practices acquired prominence across the globe. Its immediate and far reaching impacts are noticeable on the constantly changing socio-economic,linguistic and political patterns of Canadian life and modes of moral and intellectual thinking. Multiculturalism is a framework of cultures and may be defined as being behaviour peculiar to humans, together with the material objects used as an integral part of this behaviour. Culture includes languages, ideas, beliefs,customs, codes, institutions, tools, techniques, works of art, and rituals and ceremonies among other elements.(1) Culture also refers to the beliefs and practices associated with social life.

Multiculturalism and its essence of cultural norms are therefore diverse and broad, and one that is not limited to media,literature, music, history, and arts alone. Many of the apparent manifestations of social life come to include these important avenues and by-products of human social interaction which is creative, artistic, and expressive. It is in fact the development of multiculture which brought about advanced societies and consequently resulted in the triumph of knowledge and reason over ignorance,science over superstition, and that of law and order over chaos. (2)

A predominant opinion in sociology is that cultural life is created by culture itself. Although human nature has the capacity to be imprinted by culture, by itself, human nature is like an empty vessel devoid of prejudice, bias, and other preferences which relate to cultural influence. (3) Nearly all human social development happens by way of social factors which influence and shape human behavior. (4)  Culture and personality studies incorporate a type of cultural anthropology wherein researchers attempt to determine what type of personalities exist in a given culture and to what extent. (5) 

Researchers also look into what determinants correlate with ideals which preserve or make extinct various personalities found in society. The types of personalities then deemed to be ideal towards preserving a culture would then be considered as the personalities of the culture itself, whereas those personality traits and determinants which make a culture extinct would be outside of the culture and foreign to the culture.

Towards Making of Multiculturalism as a Culture

To thinkers and societal planners, future-building always invites inner evolution of rethinking and reconstruction of societal values making ideal thought accessible to freewill as an inward human certitude.Canada being an important factor of North American cultural mosaic offers new avenues of multiculturalism embodying the First Nations – Indigenous  fabrics of moral, spiritual and humanitarian historic identities  and future-making not seen elsewhere in European or Asian-African continents. The indigenous people and their ancient cultural values are distinct and unique as they possess their own systemic psychology, own specific knowledge and experience of life, health, well-being, education moral and spiritual values and the vitality of its understanding is crucial to form and shape the mainstream Canadian multicultural for societal enlightenment and harmony for cultural manifestation and sustainable future-making.

These are critical segments of broader global cultural advancements for change and adaptability to a sustainable future. Studies about human behaviors and what social forces shape human interaction and coexistence are important in that we are then able to recognize the existence of a socio-scientific cultural component in the process of perception, motivation, and learning.(6) We also learn much about what elements and determinants correlate with gratification, versus those which correlate with stratification. Some of the most common methods of application found in culture and personality studies make use of qualitative and quantitative methodology of psychology and sociology to the subject of anthropology in order to better understand personalities, human interaction, and culture. These methods include interviews, role-playing, surveys and tests, and biographies.(7)

American anthropologist Ruth Benedict was a strong proponent of such studies and research in psychological anthropology towards understanding human behaviours and social forces which shape human interaction.(8) Her works in cultural anthropology which include Patterns of Culture (1934), and The Chrysanthemum and the Sword (1946), were important in the symbolic meanings and emotional significance of cultural features which had been considered primarily through functional analysis.(9) 

In sociology, the theory of functionalism looks at various aspects of a society such as institutions, people and their roles, norms found in subcultures, and various forms of stratification and gratification.

All aspects of a society therefore serve a purpose and all are indispensable for the survival of the society.(10) Ruth Benedict and other social scientists in the field of culture and personality studies directed the attention of anthropologists to cultural components in all processes of perception, motivation, and learning.(11)

Understanding human culture, its formulation of manifestation and its impact on society is necessary in knowing our tomorrow-the picture of tomorrow.This knowledge and learning also speaks to our readiness for tomorrow’s societies – our moral and intellectual human identities and values, social triumphs, harmony, victories and opportunities, and how to cope with challenges of a progressive future which lies ahead within the essence of phenomenon of change and future-making.


  1. Khawaja, M., “North American Longing to Cultures and Subcultures”, The Times, longing-to-cultures-and-sub-cultures

2. Ibid. a

3. Ibid.

  • Leahy, T.“The Elephant in the Room”. Current Sociology. V.60., 2012, pp.8 10- 812.

5. Khawaja, M., “North American Longing to Cultures and Subcultures.”

6. Ibid.

7. Ibid.

8. ‘culture-and-personality studies.” Encyclopzedia Britannica. Encyclopaedia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite. Chicago: Encyclopzedia Britannica,

9. Ibid.

10. “functionalism.” Encyclopaedia Britannica. Encyclopaedia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite. Chicago: Encyclopedia Britannica,

11. “culture-and-personality studies.” Encyclopaedia Britannica.

Mohammad Momin Khawaja is a Sociologist and a Journalist: Member of the Canadian Sociological Association (CSA) and Member of the International Center for Journalism – ICFJ Global Network, Washington, D.C. USA. A graduate of Laurentian University in Sociology, he writes on current issues of  cultural studies, social justice, criminology, philosophy,history and problems of indigenous social welfare system and human development. He is author of numerous publications including, Women in the Ancient World (Lambert Academic Publication, 2023),and Philosophy and Ethics (2023). He recently published: “North American Colonization of Indigenous People, Cultures and System of Social Welfare.”


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