IMMIGRATION, INTERCULTURALITY AND PEACE
Immigration is the act of emigrate, that is, to move out to other country in order to live temporally or definitely there. This immigration phenomenon has grown greatly in Europe over the last few years.
The reasons behind this movement of people are quite complex. It could be said that most of the time this movement is promoted by a social (family) or economical context. However, political reasons can not be left aside.
This new composition leads to a new social perspective in Europe, that is, "multiculturalism". The traditional curriculum is now obsolete. Schools are now multicultural; different cultures, religions, customs, which affect to our daily work. There is a demand for a new curriculum where all these aspects have to be reflected and taken into account. New methodologies, new contents, new multicultural materials etc. in order to create "new" schools where different cultures will have "a place" in equal terms.
This new term "intercultural" was born within the education field. It reflects the dynamics of modern societies.
Cultures are dynamic, they change with time and when in contact with other cultures. When that situation happens, conflicts arise and have to be solved. This is mainly because culture means: ‘capacity of adaptation to the surrounding environment’.
It has been said that when two cultures are mixed, these cultures are not in the same condition. Most of the time, one of them is predominant over the other one, this is called an ‘ethno-racial’ relation. Moreover, if we add some innate problems such as social hierarchy, gender and class, the solutions is seen as even more difficult. Nowadays, some prejudice and xenophobe acts have been eradicated, although there is still a lot of work to do over this subject.
It can be said that social awareness about immigration has increased immensely. Europeans are aware of the necessity of these immigrants in order to keep our economy.
Here is where our project takes place. An exhaustive study and analysis about immigrant population within Europe have been done in order to give expression to some didactic units. These didactic units will help to achieve the target language to these students. The necessities and interest of our students have been taken into account after a deep analysis when developing these didactic units.
We believe that peace has to be achieved through understanding and accepting other ways of being. If these immigrants/minorities are able to achieve the language of the country where they are living, it will help their integration. The clash between different cultures can be fought with knowledge and culture.
Whenever we learn to live together, we will eradicate racism and xenophobic acts. If we get to know each other, there will be no more fear, in that case, we will have achieved ‘peace.’
This study establishes several aims and the way to achieve it:
According to Lederach, we can not talk about peace if relation between different cultures is based on inequality and supremacy.
Adam Curle understands peace as ‘a group of desired conditions and circumstances’. Peace demands equality and reciprocity, it is not a concept but a process.
As a matter of fact, we would like to point out that peace and understanding can take place between different cultures working at the same level of equality, it has happen in this project which is formed by many different countries and cultures which work together to gain experience with a very positive result. Every culture has enriched the others and vice versa.
However, it is necessary to say that Europeans and immigrants/minorities have to work together if they really want to reach peace and understanding. It is not a matter of theory; it has to be taken into practice by each member of this community which is Europe.
This project has shown us how worthy can be when different people work together to reach a goal.
Also history has shown us that cultures which were exposed to different cultures have evolved faster and further than those isolated (and in some cases have perished).
This project is being carried out with the support of the European Community in the framework of the Socrates programme. The content of this project does not necessarily reflect the position of the European Community, nor does it involve any responsibility on the part of the European Community. For questions and contact:
Latest update of this page: 2005-10-07
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