ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Social Construction of Identity in a Multicultural State

Sikh immigration into Canada, now over a century old, has gone through various phases and shifts as policies towards immigration by successive Canadian governments have seen various modifications. While the Sikhs today constitute a big, easily recognisable community in Canada, indispensable as a vital economic force in the country, they have also tried to construct an 'identity' of their own. The articulation of identity in the case of immigrant Sikhs, however, may not simply be understood in terms of immigrants/host society dichotomy and its dynamics; the internal dynamics of the Sikh community in Canada too need to be considered. This paper also examines the various controversies that arose from the 1970s onwards, which helped define Sikh perceptions about themselves as citizens of modern, multicultural Canada.

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