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Any word with the suffix ‘-ism’ announces itself as carrying ideological luggage and, however fishy this luggage may sometimes smell, no one can travel very far intellectually without it. So the arguments, beliefs, platitudes and superstitions of multiculturalism came gradually into being from the 1970s onwards, because liberal political ideology needed, for its own stability and coherence, a system of thought capable of overcoming its own self-centredness of belief, of admitting contrary beliefs and customs into the liberal stockade, of acknowledging the principle of equality in realms of life where human status and practices were so very different that the universalism of the principles of equality was sometimes very hard to apply (at other times, as when paying out wages to ethnic groups outside ...

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