Multiculturalism in Slovakia
Our culture is made up of people of different nationalities, religions, political persuasions. Beside the Slovaks it is developed by Hungarians, Gypsies, Czechs, Ruthenians/Ukrainians, Poles, Germans, but it is also affected by immigrants, refugees and foreigners living in Slovakia for a long time.
Meeting various cultures is becoming a part of everyday life. Cultural diversity is promoted by increasing mobility, media offer, alternative cultures and subcultures such as skinheads, graffiti culture, yuppies and ecological movements. Specific culture represents the culture of youth that manifests itself primarily by dressing and music, but is also divided into many groups, classes and specific activities.
Multiculturalism enables coexistence between the majority and minority, supports and accepts diversity, takes care of the "other" culture, human and civil tolerance, mutual respect and good interpersonal relations, tolerance, empathy, participation and cooperation. In Slovakia are these ideas mainly promoted by non-governmental organizations which mostly carry the innovation in the field of multicultural education. Numerous individual, group or regional activities with multicultural character have been organized in Slovakia, e.g. Bažant Pohoda Festival, Európske ľudové remeslo (European Folk Craft), Košice 2013 - Európske hlavné mesto kultúry (Košice 2013 – The Capital of European Culture) etc.
Young people can be involved in various events organized by civil society organizations and cultural associations of individual nations and nationalities living in the Slovak Republic. The aim of these activities is to build intercultural understanding, to find a real modus of cooperation, to create the atmosphere and a sense of security where different cultures meet and communicate with each other. They feel like having a respect for each other while trying to eliminate prejudices, customs and ideologies.
Author: Svetlana Chomova, PhD.