Being ethnocentric leads us to do false assumptions around culturaldifferences.

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We space ethnocentric when we use standards from our culture to make generalizations aboutother peoples" cultures and also customs. Together generalizations — often made there is no aconscious awareness that we"ve used our society as a universal yardstick — have the right to be means offbase and also cause us to misjudge other peoples. In the end, reasoning ethnocentrically reducesanother culture"s means of life come a pale version of our own culture. Ethnocentrism leader to culturalmisinterpretation and also distorts communication between human beings of various cultures.

Ethnocentric thinking causes us to do wrong assumptions about other people because . ..

We wind increase making premature birth judgments.

It doesn"t happen to us that "they" may not it is in very an excellent at the an extremely thing we space bestat.

By examining "them" by what us are ideal at, we may miss those aspects of life thatthey handle much more competently 보다 we do.

Simple examples of ethnocentric thinking

We Americans often talk about British drivers driving "on the not correct side" of the road. Whynot simply say "opposite side" or even "left hand side"?

We talk about written Hebrew as analysis "backwards." Why not simply say "from ideal to left"or "in the contrary direction native English."

I encouraged university students going on short-term goals trips come think or to speak the phrase"Oh, that"s different" rather than using much more negative and pejorative terms when encounteringstrange customizeds or foods.


The the contrary of ethnocentrism is xenocentrism. Xenocentrism means preferring principles andthings indigenous other cultures over ideas and things indigenous your very own culture. At the love ofxenocentrism is an presumption (conscious or unconscious) the other societies are superior to yourown.

One have to be careful, that course, not to throw around charges the "ethnocentrism" to try todiscredit civilization with who views we disagree. The best use of an knowledge ofethnocentrism is to usage it to correct our very own ethnocentric attitudes and also behavior rather than thatof others.

We must keep in mind the 2,000-year-old admonition of Jesus of Nazareth: "Why do youlook at the speck the sawdust in your brother"s eye and pay no attention tothe plank in your own eye?" (Matthew 7:3)

For further understanding on recognizing and also dealing with ethnocentrism and ethnocentricattitudes and behavior: Dog sled gyeongju illustratingethnocentrism

Paul Hiebert on ethnocentrism

The perils of monoculturalism

So, what"s wrong v being monocultural (that is, understanding only one culture)?

Well, a provincialism farming out the a monoculturalist worldview can reason you to autumn intothese traps:

1. A naive ethnocentrismI judge whatever using mine own society as the measuring pole without gift consciouslyaware the what I"m doing.2. Absolutist thinkingInsisting that things space not to be questioned: "It"s my means or the highway"An too many legalistic problem for maintaining form, precedents and established customs/dd>3. One embracing the naive realism"As we watch things, that"s the way they are."Naive realism says that we have the right to know points in the people directly without taking intoaccount our very own filtering processes. Naive realism is the view that as soon as we awareness something,we have perceived it exactly as the is. It is believing the our perceptions of fact are no coloredor mediated by anything else.4. Absence of respect for other people"s ways"There"s no one else here."5. The review of customs and perspectives top top the communication of one"s very own culturally learnedassumptions and also values (worldview)This grows the end of the feeling that one"s views have been arrived at due to the fact that they are superiorto any other views.6. The use of pejorative state to describe customs different from one"s ownThis may also be done innocently simply because one hasn"t believed through the baggagewhich those terms and also phrases carry due to the method they were supplied in the past.

"To understand one"s society is to appreciate its value. Once you appreciate the valueof someone else"s culture, you set aside the presupposed superiority of your own culture." --Adam Deckard, youth pastor


Dr. Seuss" Sneetches book is a delightful means of confronting prejudice based on in cultural and country differencesYouTubereading the "The Sneetches"

"Cultural differences should be celebrated, no ironed out." -- Christy Williams,Nazarene bible College student

Cross-cultural expertise milestones

Can we efficiently get to embracing cultural diversity


"I"m normal; you"re weird"

As globalization move ahead, what deserve to move us forward ~ above the course toward cross-culturalawareness and also understanding? To monitor their progress toward a destination, travelers in theU.S. Often examine the numbers on metal markers placed every mile follow me U.S. Highways. Forthousands the years, european travelers have depended upon numbered "milestones" to markprogress towards their destination.


Cultural awareness is an ext than simply realizing that another society is different from ours.Good cultural awareness has learning to value that other culture and respecting the culturalboundaries. So, how do we obtain to that point?

Here room some milestones usually encountered in the journeytoward yes, really cross-cultural sensitivity and also understanding:

Point the departure: "There"s no one else here" or "Our way is the only rightway."Mind-set: remote monoculturalism or ethnocentric thinkingDifferent way deficient"Wait a minute, there may be another way."Mind-set: Willingness to crack open the doorAwareness creates part sensitivity to cultural lenses"Oh, you typical there are reasons why human being respond differently."Mind-set: ToleranceDiscernment provides birth to understanding"It"s yes sir to be different."Mind-set: Favorable acceptanceRespect for cultural differences"Multi-cultural living have the right to enhance ours lives and also even be fun."Mind-set: Appreciation and also admirationEsteem

Destination: Embracing the happiness of multiculturalism and also cross-culturalunderstanding

To invite human being to make the trip to cross-culturalunderstanding is no asking castle to take on an uncritical relativism. Superficial culturalrelativism trivializes differences and can even gloss end evil. For instance, an occasionalmisguided anthropologist has actually denounced attempts by rather to get tribal teams to move awayfrom cannibalism ("it is, after all their way")

As we consider whether come embark top top this journey that willbridge social differences, we should not be deterred simply because some who have ferventlypreached "diversity" did so due to the fact that they had actually hidden -- and also not so concealed -- "agendas" toadvance.

The road to cross-cultural understanding will not always be easy. There will bemisunderstandings. There will be clashes that priorities and also even deep distinctions of opinion.Those should not be allowed to lessen the delights awaiting united state at the finish of this path.

See more: How To Tell How Old A Turtle Is, How To Determine The Age Of Your Turtle

"One factor we learn around diversity is so us don"t to speak something stupid and also offendpeople" -- freshman

Cultural adjustment realities: What to execute with toilet paper?

One truth of life in Mexico is the waste water pipe are smaller than those usedin the U.S. That way that Mexican plumbing systems are much more susceptible come blockages thanare U.S. Systems. Therefore, most human being in Mexico toss toilet paper in a trash can rather thanflushing it.

After one temporary mission trip dubbed Commission depend Mexico forwhich ns was the coordinator, a young female participant sent out me this note:


-- Howard Culbertson

How should we define a lightbulb?
Did you understand there is an ext than one means todescribe a lightbulb? What civilization call it relies on their allude of view. < more >

Cultural anthropology courseresources: social bingo icebreaker Bwanda Fusa game cultural anthropology case studies Christianity and culture Culture shock Exam examine guides Iceberg and concentriccircles models of culture Light pear illustration: What execute you see? objectives and society My own society shock PowerPoint presentations provided in class Reading reports Readings have the right to yousurvive coming Research record topic suggestions