Ethnocentrism Hinders Effective Cross-Cultural Dialogue and Common Understanding Essay
Since human beings, we could inherently prejudiced in our wisdom of concerns and others- by other folks I mean those who do not fit in in the same socio-cultural group we ascribe to.
Each of our inborn predilection to take a subjective view of reality leads to the common-and equally incorrect- assumption that we will be right in our ways, while ‘others’ happen to be wrong in theirs. This kind of tendency of biased symbole of social superiority pertaining to other cultures is what personal scientist William G. Sumner (1906) summed up with the coinage in the term ‘ethnocentrism. ‘ By simply definition, ethnocentrism is the propensity by individuals to believe, without conscious thought and through false assumptions, that their very own culture is better than that of others.
Notably, there is also a running thread of collective concurrence among whites that ‘we westerners’, with our european civilization and attendant lifestyles, are superior to the backwards races of Africa, which will we conveniently label a jungle of savagery. The negative effects of ethnocentrism are manifest in international relationships, where successful intercultural interaction is affected by ethnical differences and culture transitional challenges (Moran, Harris and Moran, 3 years ago, 265).
Nonetheless, to avoid group generalizations by simply claiming that it must be ‘we westerners’ rather than ‘I, me and myself, ‘ who suffers this ethnic prejudice- a claim through which I innocently admit my ethnocentric conditioning to include many other tribesmen during my narrow worldview corner- I actually hereby attempt to examine can certainly make money have severally paid honor to this populist bandwagon of cultural subjectivity in common sense. Finally, Let me outline the course of solution I have chartered to free myself from the blinding lack of knowledge of ethnocentrism. Was it me, genuinely, now that I’m thinking coming from a relatively larger perspective?
Late last year, I actually accompanied a close friend of mine by Saudi Arabia (whom I will certainly not disclose intended for the pang of guilt that gnaws at my conscience) to pick several forms from your embassy. Well, it seems that seeing that September 14, a kind of anxiety for each of our Muslim siblings has enjoyed into each of our national psych. At your own level, I change lanes every time My spouse and i meet 1 donning a flowing light garb and…. err, an unusually lengthy beard. In any case, the security gentleman at the charge just leaped the metal detector over my figure and patted me within the back.
Nevertheless it was my personal friend’s convert, the security man, perhaps viewing Osama’s ghosts, took a deep inhale and started out what was one of the most rigorous personal search I had developed ever witnessed. He yanked the costume from the underside and went the detector inch by inch, grinned with pain relief upon locating nothing (read bombs) after which allowed him to pass through. Nevertheless , the issue this is not the security man’s exaggerated fears, but the fact that My spouse and i took it as normal, without annoying to problem why that wasn’t. The culture I grew up in had taught me to regard some religions as being synonymous with terrorism, and dismiss other folks as questionnable idolatry and pure superstition.
In my analysis of world religions, I’m often tempted to relate Islam with terrorism, a belief that may be largely fed by multimedia stereotyping in relation to incidences of suicide bombings. As for the majority of traditional Africa religions, persuits and rituals, I always located ‘evidence’ to dismiss these people as the demonic chants of a questionnable charlatan. Their polygamy We considered the ways of an uncivilized society that still provides hiding for the crazy caveman’s genes.
On this score, my loss of sight was educated by the traditional western glorification from the nuclear friends and family unit, which usually greatly clashes with other cultures’ recognition from the unifying element of extended families and kinship systems (Moran, Harris and Moran, 2007, 11). In regard to religious verite, the only true Supreme Staying I presumed existed may be the Christian Goodness I worship, whom I assumed held in contempt the ungodly methods of unchristian beliefs. For so very long, I wrongly believed that with the exception of Christian believers, all other believers are condemned for hell.
This ethnic and ethnical belief that the religion by which one is supposed to be is on the inside important (Andersen, 2006) is among the sub-divisions that promote ethnocentrism. Personally, it had been my genuine conviction right up until I noticed that every believer thinks also of other religions. Remarkable is my own said friend’s vehement assertion that Jesse the boy of Martha (Christ) was an imposter whose story deceived people that he was the son of God. Rather, he states that Mohamed is the accurate messenger of Allah, the creator of everything. Nonetheless, it will probably be a self-contradiction for me to consider my system of beliefs since not being the right one and the most suitable.
It is an inconsistence and entry of its falseness, that we consider the peak of ideological hypocrisy. We recognize the truth that I belong to a particular lifestyle; and the fact that to fit during my society I must conform to their cultural values and worth systems. However , to overcome my ethnical beliefs with other cultural worldviews, I get insight inside the principle of cultural relativism by Franz Boas, who argued that “civilization is definitely not a thing absolute, but is family member, and each of our ideas and conceptions are true just so far as our civilization goes” (Degler, 1992 p 67).
Accordingly, people’s behaviors, traditions and philosophy should be understood in the context of their nationalities. When we use the lens of our cultures to know other civilizations, there is always the risk of prejudice and biasness. The condition of ethnocentrism leads to failure of helpful communication and misunderstandings, which in turn causes cultural differences and conflicts (Moran, Harris and Moran, 2007, p 4). Similarly, the idea of functionalism by Bronislaw Malinowski posits that ethnicities are devices of buildings by which diverse societies function. Each contemporary society, therefore , has unique requires which can only be served simply by its own tradition.
As such, we are able to only be familiar with behavior of other nationalities when we have that culture’s viewpoint, to avoid the beliefs created simply by our encounters within our very own culture. Sources Andersen, M. L. (2006). Sociology: understanding a diverse society. New York: Thomson/Wadsworth. Degler, C. N. (1992).
In Search of Being human: The Fall and Resurrection of Darwinism in American Social Thought. US: Oxford University Press. Moran, To. R., Harris, P. R., Moran, H. V. (2007).
Managing ethnical differences: global leadership techniques for the modern world, 7th Edition. New York: Butterworth-Heinemann Sumner, Watts. G. (1906). “Folkways. ” In McCann, C. L. (2004).
Individuality and the social order: the social aspect in liberal thought. New York: Routledge.