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Multiculturalism in literature is the attempt to show the ethnic diversity in a
Multiculturalism in literature is the attempt to show the ethnic diversity in a specific cultural experience. Whether accurately depicted or not, the novel creates a story that revolves around the culture in the setting and through the characters of the story. Introduce the Title of the novel with a short explanation of how it relates to multiculturalism About the Author - discuss the cultural background of the author and how the multicultural aspect of the novel is influenced by the culture of the author- Is the author from the same culture and if not – Why write about this culture? General Accuracy Books should contain current, correct information. Consider how old the photos and pictures are. Modern stories should acknowledge recent events. Does the author write accurately about the cultural environment during the time the novel is set? Stereotypes Does the writer follow or push against multicultural stereotypes. What does the book reflect about individual people's lives? Does it move outside of the general personality traits or behaviors to the group of people or the culture it depicts? Setting Is the novel written with accurate settings? If not, what is not accurate about the setting in the novel? Again, watch out for stereotypes. A stereotyped image might represent all Native American peoples in tepees, but Native Americans historically have lived in various types of homes and Native Americans are part of present society Language What language is used in the novel and is it different than original language for the culture it represents? Do the characters only speak standard English? This division can reinforce stereotypes that all people in a group speak in a particular way. If a book includes the language of a specific culture, the actual language should appear, not nonsense words or an invented language that mimics the authentic one. Translated works should convey the original content and not sound like awkward, word-by-word interpretations. Illustrations Do the authors Illustrations convey the reality that members of the culture represent? Are there any specific illustrations that conflict with the culture represented? Author's Perspective This can be a controversial point. Some people believe that writers should belong to the cultures they describe; others believe that it's enough if writers empathize with members of a culture even though writing from an outsider's point of view. Writers should avoid treating cultural practices as exotic- Does the author belong to the culture the novel represents? Themes, Motifs, and Symbolism What themes and motifs does the author use and are they accurate for the culture and the setting of the novel? What symbolism is used and does it represent the true culture? What do others say about it- either the culture represented or the story itself in relationship to multiculturalism? A thesis for a multicultural essay should be structured in answer to some of these questions- Example: Research and analysis show that Achebe writes Things Fall Apart in response to the resistance of change in the Ibgo culture during colonization in Nigeria. The main character Okonkwo battles inwardly, as well as socially and politically, to obtain and maintain status and the respect of his villagers; Achebe develops this character, whose identity is built around masculinity and tradition, to demonstrate the destruction of colonization This research paper is 2800-3000 words in length and should be written on a properly formatted document. It requires synthesis of quote and paraphrase from 6-8 secondary sources that help support the discussion and provide evidence.

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