Multiculturalism: The Missing Bodies and Voices
There is a void within anti-racism literature: the realities of Brown students are missing. There is also a lack of Canadian research on the model minority myth and on how Canadian multiculturalism is enacted within the education system and its effects on students. It is my hope to add the Brown perspective to anti-racism research by shedding some light to the experiences of Brown students as one example of the education system’s continued racism. The current system of education privileges Western knowledge and operates within the notion that Whiteness is the norm. Mainstream, or liberal multiculturalism, and its category of the model minority assist in maintaining the system as it exists. Bringing a critical perspective to liberal multiculturalism, this chapter demonstrates how the model minority myth has created and continues to maintain a hierarchy of non-White bodies within the education system. Further, the model minority category perpetuates the stereotype that all Brown students are academically successful. As one way to disrupt this homogenization of Brown bodies, this chapter utilizes the term Brown over South Asian. Using personal experiences as a Brown student and educator, this chapter engages an anti-colonial and anti-racism framework to disrupt the model minority myth. To do this, experiences of Brown students who fit within the myth, as well as the silenced experiences of Brown students who do not fit within the myth, will be discussed and analyzed, bringing the missing voices to the forefront.
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