Amongst the first contributors to the philosophical literature on multiculturalism were the many refugees from the liberal–communitarian debate that so dominated western political philosophy in the 1970s and 1980s. The debate between liberals and communitarians did not begin as a debate about multiculturalism, and many of its main protagonists initially had little, if anything, to say on the subject. Nevertheless, a number of the signature themes around which the liberal–communitarian dialogue revolved proved to be naturally suited to this new area of inquiry. In fact, many of the core concepts deployed by liberals and communitarians in this earlier set of debates found much more fertile ground when they were applied to questions of minority rights and the accommodation of cultural diversity. The objective of this chapter is to identify and explore these key themes and concepts in the work of some of the more influential liberal and communitarian thinkers, and to offer a brief account of how they have been carried forward into the literature on multiculturalism. 1