multiculti (1990)

Benjamin Zimmer bgzimmer at RCI.RUTGERS.EDU
Fri Dec 31 07:12:56 UTC 2004

The OED3 entry for "multiculti" gives a first cite of 1989 from Don
Cherry's _Multikulti_ album, with cites for the "multiculti" spelling
beginning in 1991.  Here is a 1990 cite via JSTOR:

1990 _Oxford Review of Education_ 16 260 Although concerned teachers were
aware of the political dimension of racism before the riots they made the
multiculti [sic] approach, the "what's it got to do with politics" type of

The "[sic]" appears in the text of the article ("Anti-Racism as a Radical
Educational Ideology in London and Tyneside" by Alastair Bonnett).
Bonnett is quoting a member of All London Teachers Against Racism and
Fascism (ALTARF).

Interesting that the term was already in use in the UK at the time, even
if the article's author disowned it with the "[sic]".  (Then again, Don
Cherry and his "Multikulti" band undoubtedly had more fans in London and
other European cities than in the US.)

--Ben Zimmer

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