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As the development of the New World progressed, we saw in emerging countries like Australia, the US, etc. inclusion of various ethic/nationalistic group, often en masse. In the US in particular, the phrase, "The Melting Pot" became popular. It referred to the idea that inclusion of these varied groups would have an effect metaphorically similar to what occurs when alloying a metal. E.g., the resultant alloy has strengths and properties that the mother elemental metals alone do not have. The inclusion and assimilation of the incoming immigrations into a cohesive whole was considered a good thing.

However, during the 20th century and later, many of the arriviste's felt they were losing their national/ethnic identity, and steps have been taken in many cases to preserve that uniqueness. This approach was not well described by terms like Melting Pot. As such, another metaphor was sought.

The result was the Salad Bowl concept, in which we have a resultant combination that is, as a whole, an improvement over its various components alone, but also maintains the concept of: Separate yet equal. The components of a salad are combined, yet remain discrete.

This metaphor encompasses some aspects from Melting Pot, but not the level of assimilation we saw as a positive in Melting Pot.

In American early-grade education, this term is the replacement for Melting Pot (which is no longer considered to be politically sensitive enough).

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Q: Which pattern of interaction is also called the salad bowl theory?
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Answer: Bread, Appetizer, Soup, Salad, Entree Did you know:In many European countries the last course served is the salad course.

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The opposite of a melting pot is something called a salad bowl. In a bowl of freshly tossed salad, all the ingredients are mixed together. Yet they never lose their shape, form or identity. Together, however, the ingredients make up a unity. In a sense, all the ingredients of a salad contribute to the finished product. They may be covered with the same dressing, but the green vegetables, tomatoes, lettuce and eggs can all be seen for what they are. From this point of view, America is very much like a salad bowl where individual ethnic groups blend together, yet maintain their cultural uniqueness. They may work together during the day at similar jobs and in identical companies, but at night they may return to their ethnic communities where the flavor of their individual culture dominates their way of life. This is why perhaps there is so much diversity within America. Each ethnic group has its own special interests, language, food, customs and traditions to protect and defend. This idea of the salad bowl is referred to by sociologists as cultural pluralism. It simply means that American society is a collection of many cultures living side by side within one country.

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Many people used to say the US was like a melting pot now people say its like a salad bowl why?

A melting pot is where several ingredients are taken and melted into one unified ingredient. This has never truly been an accurate depiction of the people in the United States which is why the salad bowl analogy has gained more popularity of late. We are a country of immigrants who are loathe to abandon the cultures they came to this country with. Thus, we have African Americans, Irish Americans, German Americans, Italian Americans, French Americans, Armenian Americans, Japanese and Chinese Americans to name just a few. Like a salad which serves as a unified dish, the ingredients in a salad are obvious and stand on there own as various ingredients, i.e., tomatoes, broccoli, celery, bacon bits and dressing. This is a far more accurate depiction of how people in the United States view themselves.

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