Argumentative Paper #5

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The big question that seems to be motivating Taylor (and, indeed, his respondents) is whether or not Western liberal society can accommodate "illiberal" views, practices, traditions. And, more, whether certain minority groups (within Western democracies) can insist on their own maintenance over time through what some may see as "illiberal" means. Should the U.S. grant the Amish minority exemptions from laws dealing with children's education and welfare/health care? Do you agree with the French government's ban on face-covering in public even if it encroaches on cultural practices of some religious minorities? Etc., etc.

What do you think? Must countries that generally hold liberal values impose these on all individuals and groups? Or, is there a place in Western, liberal society to accommodate these "illiberal" practices? What ought majorities do about minority religious and cultural practices when they conflict with majority norms of the deepest kind (basic rights, liberties, and obligations)? Explain and defend your position, using specific examples as needed to illustrate your position.

You will be graded both on content and format. You need to demonstrate thoughtful and careful engagement with our course material and at least two outside sources. Specify the pages of the texts you referred to for your arguments within your text, where appropriate, and provide a bibliography below your text (use APA style).


Structure your thinking and your lines of argumentation into sections and paragraphs, ideally with an introduction and conclusion. Section headers may be helpful. Your paper should be typed, 3-4 pages long (double spaced, size 12 font, 1 inch margins), and uploaded to Canvas in Word or PDF format (all word processing programs allow you to save in one of these file types). Add page numbers, a title and your name. Be careful to edit for grammar, spelling and formulations.



TEXT: Taylor,Multiculturalism(Princeton: 1994)

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