Discuss about the case study Literature Review for Theories of Culture.
The world is experiencing a lot of changes based on the cultural transformations that are caused by the various factors that affect the way people live. For instance, academics has been of great effect to the living styles of people because much has been known through the learning process. These changes have affected the culture that has been existing, thus bringing new ways of beliefs. Comparing the ways of living in the contemporary world with the historical times, there a lot of chances because of the activities that people perform. In the historical times, before civilization came into existence, human beings had a strict way of performing their tasks. For instance, it was known that women were responsible for home chores and men could participate in developmental activities. There were no educational programs like in the contemporary society. Children could follow the footsteps of their parents that determined their future. Later, changes of creating a learned community were adopted, and all the community activities changed to pave ways for the new culture.
Therefore, comparing the activities that were being undertaken by our forefathers, they are completely different because of the changed culture. For instance, men could work in the firms among other traditional activities such as hunting to make a living but in the current times, people are working in organizations and businesses to ensure that they earn their living. Because of these identified changes in culture in relations to the lives of the affected people, it can be observed that culture affects the lives of personal and professional lives. Culture has a significant place in the life of a person, and it depends on of the environment. There are different types of cultures in the community amongst which are: - national culture, corporate culture, religious culture, generational culture, and gender orientation among many others. A person might fit in any one of them of more depending on the environments in contact. For instance, a Christian might be working as a professional in particular place. Therefore, corporate and religious cultures will be affecting the ways of living for this specific person.
Rationale of the Paper
It is paramount for people to understand more about cultures and how they should be managed. Culture is surrounded by a lot of theories that provide rationales about the lives of different people in various environments. The topic about theories of culture gives the audience more information and knowledge about how life is affected by the values and beliefs of a particular environment. These theories of culture can either impose negative or positive influences the lives of the people who believe in them. Culture is very important in the society because it determines the values and beliefs of the particular community. It also enhances the effectiveness of the activities being performed, thus enhancing the chances of achievements. Therefore, this paper is aimed at providing a review of culture literature and its effect on a personal, professional, organizational and communal life of an individual. Firstly, the rationale of acquiring the information will be provided to create a base for the effective literature review (Daniels, Lauder, & Porter, 2009).
A good research work is limited to the type of academic resources that can be used and the time frame of publication to be used. Therefore, this paper will also be constrained to time factor to ensure that the data and information used is valid and effective. Because culture has been in existence for a long time ago, some historical sources must be used to gather information about the historical periods. Rather, researchers who have used information from historical publications can be majored on to avoid using resources that seem to be too old. In this literature review, historical books and journal articles will mainly major because the information is valid and acceptable in the academic space. The academic resources to be used in this review of literature will have to be published in the last 15 years. During this period, there have not been many changes in the culture of the community. The only changes that have been observed are the change its technological developments (Hutchby & Moran-Ellis, 2001). Journals about organizational culture and societal beliefs and values will be used to provide relevant information about the research (Fullan, 2001).
The internet has a lot of libraries that can be used in search of academic resources to be used in research work. Therefore, in this research about theories of culture, the web was the core database used in searching the required information. Google engine was frequently used in search of books that could be featured in the research. Also, Academic Search database was used to get some journals that were thought to be relevant in tackling the study. However, Google provided enough information and resources that could be needed in retrieving information about theories of culture. The Google database has been loaded with a lot of academic resources, and it is rated among the best databases for educational support.
There are a lot of key terms that was used in search of the resources for the study of the Google search engine. Since this paper is related to theories of culture in relation to the culture of a medical practitioner, the key terms could lean on the medical side. For instance, theories of medical culture, health beliefs and theories of culture could be used as key terms in the search engine. Also, a statement such as the effects of culture on the personal/professional life of a person could be used. When Google books were searched using some of these keywords, a lot of results were obtained thus proving a series of selection for the best part (Helmreich & Merritt, 2001). When ‘theories of culture’ term as searched in the Academic Search database, fifteen articles were obtained that seemed to be related to the topic, Theories of Culture. In Google search engine, they result obtained infinite, but they were arranged according to their rating. This means that the articles and books in the first counts of results are highly preferred for use in the research.
Authors have previously developed theories of culture that provide different rationale about culture. Some theories connect the literature about culture in the society. Firstly, culture is not as distinct as nature because it can change from time to time. Culture is defined as anything that controls the living style of an individual as opposed to the natural laws. It is also evident that cultures can be learned and practiced (Hendrix & Carman, 2010). According to Hegel who was a famous French psychologist, culture is a series of events that helps a person performed a certain act. These steps create a particular image that is related to certain acts and beliefs related to a group of people. For instance, academic curriculum creates the culture of a school, thus defining all the activities that ought to be performed in these particular environments.
Socialization is an important factor in the community in correlation to the culture of a particular society. Through socialization, the behaviors and minds of the children are shaped towards the expectations of the community. Therefore, their acts and thinking will be acceptable to the standards of the specific community. Whenever these children move from their locality to other environments, they are in a position of learning new culture by identifying the values and beliefs of the particular community. Language covers the largest part of culture, and for any person to learn about a strange community, the local languages must be learned first. If a person can communicate with the local language, it will be easier to learn more about the culture and adapt effectively. Therefore, the first step to being taken in learning new cultures is to make sure that the local language is learned. If a person moves to a new culture that within their locality, it will be easy to adapt and learn their new methodologies. For instance, a person working in an organization that is within the same residential areas, the culture in the workplace will intermarry with the society’s because it the highest percentage of the workers are from the same locality (Macdonald, 2005).
Culture is referred to as knowledge before of the fact that different people can learn it. Therefore, much about culture is the facts about the world’s objects, places, and people’s ideas among others. People who are sharing the same culture are said to be sharing a common factor based the thoughts about the understanding of the world. According to Ward Goodenough (1957), s for people to fit in a particular culture, they will have to ensure that they have the same understanding of similar cognitive vie of the world. Although culture has been related to Knowledge, it has its end of learning because there is no much development of ideas from time to time. A child who is born in a certain culture will learn through their family members while individuals are moving to new environments will experience a procedural learning process.
Marx who was a Prussian philosopher believed that culture is communication and there no person who can learn a new culture without communication. Also, he stated it was a form of mediation, and it could be used in different systems. For instance, if an individual is working in a company, learning the organizational culture will enhance the functionality and efficiency of working. Therefore, a culture can affect the mode of working for any particular profession. In this case, a medical practitioner has to pass through a competitive training to understand the medical culture. Despite the professional language, a doctor will need to be flexible enough to ensure that differences in culture will not affect the career negatively. For instance, some cultures might be having difference beliefs about the treatment of some diseases such as blood pressure, diabetes among others. Communities with traditional beliefs about the occurrence of such diseases might affect the interventions used by the doctors for treatments.
Culture has been viewed as non-natural. Thus many philosophers and psychologist refer it as transferable, and a person can be able to learn more than one culture. The researcher and academician such as Marx and Goodenough have developed theories that correlated about the nature of cultures. Although each one of them had different views about culture, there has not been any contradictions between their opinions (Sivakumar & Nakata, 2011). Therefore, culture is influenced by different aspects such as language and the environment. A person will either be a member of a particular culture through propositional or procedural learning (Patankar, 2012). The difference is that learning through propositional is through natural methods, and procedural is developing a know-how within a given time. It is definite that if a person cannot fit in a particular culture, the living conditions will be unfavorable because the activities in the particular community will not fit personal expectations.
Results of the Review
According to Clark (1990), Schwartz (2006) and Hofstede (2002), behaviors of individuals are defined by their culture based on the values and beliefs. Based on the national culture, it might be hard to differentiate sub-cultures in a country. Especially for people have not been in a particular place before, the minor differences might not easily observe. Therefore, working in a country that has various subgroups might affect personal and professional life because some of the local activities practices will not be known. A country is the core controller of the culture, and that is the reason there are differences observed between cultures of distinct states. In a country, people are free to move from one place, thus enhancing socialization. Factors such as living intermarriage, education and career among others enhances the possibilities of people learning cultures of other sub-groups. Therefore, apart from the national culture, people end up learning more about their fellows in common places. Because of the perceived connections between places, or between different people, strangers will not be able to notice the differences (Soares, Farhangmehr & Shoham, 2007).
There is a well-known theory developed by Hofstede (2001) about the national culture. This theory was developed based on data collected in two different surveys undertaken by the IBM, which focused on the attitudes of the employees. The survey included more than 116,000 questionnaires conducted in more than 70 countries that have over 20 different languages. Because of the cases of missing data from some of the countries, the analysis included 40 countries that had fully-filled questionnaires (Soares, Farhangmehr & Shoham, 2007). This ensured that the data to be obtained was certain and reliable. Because of the reliability of these research works, many academician dealing with social sciences have used this publication as a reference in many academic works. Later in the year 1982, other ten countries were included in the analysis after a complete dataset was provided.
In Hofstede’s work, consequences of culture have been discussed focusing on cultural dimensions, collectivism and individualism and international issues on career/work-related values. The four dimensions of national culture included; masculinity, individualism, power distance and uncertainty (Hofstede, 2006). Each of the aspects has a distinct impact on the culture of the nation. For example, inequality in power in a particular country can be measured by observing the power distance. Also, the level of independence will be determined by the measures of individualism in the community. The competitiveness and assertiveness of masculine values in a country determines the levels of masculinity in the country (Hofstede, 1980).
Schwartz (2006) developed bipolar dimensions of cultural values based on an analysis that was conducted from a dataset that covered 73 countries. The survey was conducted using two different tools that ensured reliability and certainty of the data. According to Schwartz, cultural values are broken into three dimension that defines culture. Firstly, Schwartz stated that basing the argument on Autonomy and embeddedness; people are independent, different and unique in all ways. Therefore, people will express their attitudes, ideas, and preferences and feel when encouraged. Therefore, culture contributes to making people understand what they are supposed to do at any particular time. Hierarchy and Egalitarianism emphasize that people are attached to their roles and responsibilities. Therefore, the professional life of a person is affected in cases where culture encourages undertaking responsibilities. Through harmony and mastery, individuals will tend to fit in the social and natural world (Hofstede, 2006).
Undertaking a study of theories of culture and how they affect the life of an individual enhances the understanding of the meaning and management of culture. The findings of the study undertaken to make the study successful has been used in this paper to correlate the culture, environment, and residents. It has been found that philosophers and psychologist have contributed a lot in informing the society about the relationships of culture and the community. Finally, it will be certain to conclude that culture imposes impacts to the personal, professional life of an individual.
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