The Rumors of Multiculturalism’s death Are Exaggerated (Against Merkel) | Informed Comment

German Chancellor Angela Merkel over the weekend declared “multiculturalism” dead in her country and demanded that labor immigrants be assimilated, through German language and German culture.

This sort of discourse has a long and ugly history in Germany and it derives from a set of mistaken premises. An important strand of modern German political philosophy has tended to see the state as weak and fragile, and as easily toppled by criticism, dissent, and difference. The opposite has tended to be true in the past two hundred years–governments most often are much stronger than society and are hard to challenge.

That the state must assert itself and must ensure a broad cultural consensus among its subjects lay behind the Kulturkampf or ‘cultural struggle’ of the 1870s, ……………

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