Researching for my trip to South America, I came across this little country that I knew nothing about – Suriname – and its capital city – Paramaribo – which I couldn’t have named before. And then I saw this photo of a synagogue next to a mosque (there are also Christian churches and Hindu temples in town) and I got a feeling that Suriname might become one of the most interesting countries on my tour.
Might this country in the South American jungle with its Indian, Creole, Indonesian, Maroon, Amerindian, Chinese and Dutch population who are Christian, Hindu, Muslims, Buddhists, Jews, traditional African believers and hopefully also a few Atheists provide some lessons for Europe at a time of increased immigration and diversity? It sounds like multiculturalism is nothing new and the “waves” of immigrants coming to Europe are tiny compared with those absorbed by other continents at other times, including immigrants from Europe. If small South American countries can do it, why shouldn’t Europe be able to benefit from this mix of cultures, languages and religions?
I will hopefully find out in 2016!