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Cross Cultural Values and Ethics Essay

The terms high context and low context were first used by Edward Hall and they are used to explain the underlying cultural differences between societies. In high context cultures, a lot of the information is either internalized in an individual or it is in the physical context. This means that in this form of culture nonverbal messages are more important than the verbal messages. In addition, the people in high context cultures share a form of closeness which is due to their shared experiences. Some of the societies with high context communication are Korea, China and Japan.

On the other hand, in low context cultures messages that are verbal are usually highly specific in addition to being elaborate. Verbal messages also tend to be very detailed. Some of the societies with low context communication include Switzerland, United States and Germany. There are several differences between high context and low context communications. One of these is that in low context communication messages are best passed by words (verbal) than by nonverbal methods. On the other hand, in high context communication the messages are best passed by nonverbal means than by words.

Another difference is that in low context communication the verbal message is direct. On the other hand, in high context communication the verbal message is indirect and communication is effected by talking around a point. Another difference is that high context communication is used in well established relationships especially where people have been relating for long. On the other hand low context communication is used among people who have short durations of contact. 2. Explain how World War II changed women’s labor force participation.

World War II changed women’s participation in the workforce. To begin with, at that time most of the women stayed at home and held no paying jobs and this is because this was a preserve of men. However with the World War II men were deployed in the military and this created a shortage of workers especially at a time when workers were desperately needed particularly for production of war equipments. Women who could not previously be employed as culture placed men in the workforce and women at home were able to get jobs.

This led to an increase in the number of women who were in the workforce. Another thing is that women who were already in the workforce and who had been holding traditionally female jobs such as clerical jobs were able to switch to high paying jobs which were previously considered a preserve of men. Clearly, the World War II was a blessing in disguise to women. They were able to overcome culture and discover the great potential in them by holding jobs that were traditionally reserved for men.

No doubt that this proved to women that they have capability to achieve just like men and it changed the position of women in the workforce. 3. Explain Hofstede’s masculinity-femininity dimension and the behavioral expectations set for each gender. The Hofstede’s dimension of masculinity/femininity focuses on the emphasis the society places on nurture and achievement. According to the dimension, femininity emphasizes sexuality equality, caring and nurturing, and environmental awareness. On the other hand, masculinity emphasizes wealth acquisition, distinct gender roles, and ambition.

According to this dimension, there are set behavioral expectations for each gender. The behavioral expectations depend on context. For example when it comes to politics and economics, men are expected to solve conflict through force as well as priotize economic growth. On the other hand, women are supposed to priotize environmental protection and solve conflicts by negotiation. When it comes to social norms, men are supposed to be ego oriented and so they should focus on attaining money and things as these would boost their ego.

As for women, they should be relationship oriented and so they should focus on people and quality of life. When it comes to work, men should show preference for higher wages while the women should show preference for less working hours because of their other responsibilities. When it comes to matters of education especially school performance, men are expected to consider failing as a disaster while women should consider failing as a minor accident. On matters of religion, religion should be very important to men while to women religion should not be a very important aspect of life.

4. List and describe the 6 similarities across all religions. As much as there are differences across the different religions in the world, there exists several similarities. One of these is the belief in divinity which is accorded names such as Allah, Krishna, and God. In all religions there is the belief that there is a being that is divine and which is above the man. Another similarity is the belief that it is possible for man to communicate with divinity through actions such as prayers, sacrifices and meditation.

Another one of the similarities is the belief that man requires help in order for him to communicate with the divinity and that is why mediators such as prophets, apostles, and holy men are sent by the divinity to men. Another similarity is the use of sacred scriptures which provides sacred wisdom which is transmitted from one generation to the other for propagation of the religious beliefs. The religions believe that the scriptures have a divine origin. Another similarity across religions is the performance of rituals and these are meant to bring man close to divinity.

The last similarity lies in speculation where people across all religions, from their birth to their death ask similar questions and are faced by many similar challenges and uncertainties about life. 5. Who are the Mosuo people? How is their way of living different from the United States, explain 3 significant contrasts between both societies. Mosuo people are people who belong to a small ethnic group that lives in the Sichuan and Yunnan provinces in China. These people have unique cultural practices which make their way of life very different from that of United States.

One of the most significant contrasts is that among the Mosuo people lineage is traced through the female side. This is unlike in United States where people trace their lineages through their father’s side. This means that if one does not know their father but knows their mother they have a belonging and thus cannot face stigmatization. Another contrast lies in the fact that unlike in US where the man is the head of the family, among the Mosuo the woman is the head of a family. The female elder in a family handles the family matters such as assigning of duties and management of money.

She has absolute power. This is unheard of in US where men are the head of their families and would not agree to be headed by a woman as it would hurt their ego. Another significant contrast is seen when it comes to marriage. Among the Mosuo people, they have what is called walking marriages. Unlike in US where people marry, live together and bear children which they raise together, among the Mosuo men and women who are in love and are having sexual relations do not live together and any children born out of the relationship belong to the woman’s family.

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