Understanding of cultural diversity is essential to a healthy multicultural society. Fundamental to this book’s approach is the belief that a comparative, cross-cultural view of human differences and similarities enhances understanding of diversity and multiculturalism within contemporary North America.
On Being Different provides an up-to-date, comprehensive, and interdisciplinary account of diversity and multiculturalism in the United States and Canada. Conrad Kottak and Kathryn Kozaitis clarify essential issues, themes, and topics in the study of diversity, including ethnicity, religion, gender, and sexual orientation. The book also presents an original theory of multiculturalism, showing how human agency and culture work to organize and change society.
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Kathryn A. Kozaitis is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Georgia State University, and holds an adjunct appointment in the Department of Anthropology at Emory University. She received her Ph.D. in Social Work and Anthropology at the University of Michigan in 1993. Her key interests are in the relationship between global transformations and local adaptations, particularly in the processes by which economically, politically, and socially subordinated collectivities in a postcolonial world use culture to construct community, identity, and meaning. Professor Kozaitis has conducted ethnographic research on sociocultural change and adaptation among Gypsies in Athens, Greece, and on ethnicity and aging among Greek immigrants in Chicago, Illinois.
Conrad Phillip Kottak (A.B. Columbia, 1963; Ph.D. Columbia, 1966) is Professor and Chair of Anthropology at the University of Michigan, where he has taught since 1968. In 1991 he was honored for his teaching by the University and the state of Michigan. In 1992 he received an excellence in teaching award from the College of Literature, Sciences, and the Arts of the University of Michigan. Professor Kottak has done fieldwork in cultural anthropology in Brazil (since 1962), Madagascar (since 1966), and the United States. In current research projects, Kottak and his colleagues have investigated the emergence of ecological awareness in Brazil, the social context of deforestation in Madagascar, and popular participation in economic development planning in northeastern Brazil.
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