What Is an American? Abraham Lincoln and Multiculturalism

What Is an American? Abraham Lincoln and Multiculturalism

What Is an American? Abraham Lincoln and Multiculturalism

What Is an American? Abraham Lincoln and Multiculturalism

Excerpt

Abraham Lincoln is a dead white male. He was a honkey. He was a WASP. His world was quite different from the world we inhabit today. You might wonder, then, what relevance his memory could possibly have for the question of the validity and desirability of multiculturalism. The question is a very serious one. It amounts to this: What is--and what should be--an American?

The current buzzword "multiculturalism" means different things to different people; the issue is, in part, semantic.1 As some use the word it refers to efforts to en- . . .

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