Multicultural education is a field of inquiry that has long historical roots and contemporary conceptions that connect to principles of critical education that can inform social justice pedagogy; however, the field has been challenged by efforts in the mainstream to foster superficial, liberal (but still assimilationist) approaches to diversity in education. We begin this chapter with a discussion of the main purposes of education in the U.S.A. Then we provide a brief historical overview of how multicultural education evolved to present day. Third, we detail the principles of critical education already evident in multicultural education theory. Fourth, we acknowledge factors associated with the problem of implementing multicultural and critical education theory into practice. We then discuss the key principles of critical multicultural education and discuss its respective connections to teaching for social justice. Finally we end with a series of provocative questions and a call to action.