The IUP Journal of English Studies
Multicultural Canada and Diasporic Writers: Rohinton Mistry and Shyam Selvadurai

Article Details
Pub. Date : Sep, 2019
Product Name : The IUP Journal of English Studies
Product Type : Article
Product Code : IJES61909
Author Name : C V Padmaja and S Sushma Raj
Availability : YES
Subject/Domain : Arts & Humanities
Download Format : PDF Format
No. of Pages : 06



Canada, a global community home for many people of different races and cultures, embraces all cultures—cultural diversity being one of the country’s most important national characteristics. All ethnocultural groups have official sanction to identify themselves with the culture of their choice and yet retain access to social and economic equality. Irrespective of race or ethnicity, the individuals in a multicultural society are entitled to equal treatment, protection from racial discrimination, equality of opportunity, and the right to remain culturally different. This proved an advantage to a diasporic writer operating within Canadian multiculturalism. The right to retain one’s culture has made many of the diasporic writers go back to their mother country in the choice of themes. The paper discusses how Rohinton Mistry and Shyam Selvadurai, the two South Asian diasporic writers of Indian and Sri Lankan origin, too have gone back to India and Sri Lanka respectively in fictionalizing their lived experiences set in their countries of origin.


Canada’s multiculturalism is deeply rooted in Anglo-Canadian and French-Canadian biculturalism. The dualism between the so-called “founding nations” goes back to the eighteenth century when after the conquest of La Nouvelle France in 1760, the British refrained from interfering in the culture of the francophone population. In the Quebec Act of 1774, the British, contrary to their usual policy of assimilation, granted the French settlers the right to their own social order as well as the right to practice their faith and speak their own languages.


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