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Transcending Racial BarriersToward a Mutual Obligations Approach$
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Michael O. Emerson and George Yancey

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199742684

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199742684.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use.date: 17 May 2022

The Critical Core

The Critical Core

(p.103) Chapter 8 The Critical Core
Transcending Racial Barriers

Michael O. Emerson

George Yancey

Oxford University Press

Multiculturalism is a philosophy emphasizing cultural maintenance and offers many valuable insights for the eradication of racial tensions. It also is a philosophy that can inhibit the development of value consensus because of the multiple sets of values that can emerge. And developing value consensus is a must if racial unity is to become a viable reality in the United States. This chapter draws on some preliminary research to explore what the Americans' core values might look like. In doing so, it takes the initial steps toward envisioning a set of values that can unify all Americans. It discusses the results of a study of multiracial organizations asking members of different races about their insights as to what can unify Americans. Their answers provide clues as to which values may transcend racial division within our society. The chapter first discusses the American identity, why a common core is needed, African Americans and their ideas about freedom, and what the core concept of freedom means.

Keywords:   United States, multiculturalism, identity, common core, multiracial organizations, racial division, African Americans, freedom

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