Why is it essential to know about cultural conflict?


“Cultures are merely different, not deficient, and each culture’s norms and practices should be assed only from the perspective of the culture itself, not by standards embraced by another culture. It is the idea that one cannot make judgments about a culture just because they are not a part of that it. Outsiders should be able to see the cultural from a neutral perspective and not judge the culture before understanding it. Each culture should be viewed with respect and as an equal because no one culture is better than any other. They should be allowed to practice their own beliefs, what a cultures believes to be true, and values, a shared view about is right.”

source: Cultural communication

What is the relationship between culture and conflict? How do cultural differences play an important role in conflict? Why does all this matter?

Conflict is part of most interpersonal relationships. Misunderstandings can arise because of cultural differences. Culture seems to make a distinction between ‘us’ and ‘them’ and people usually favor ‘us’ over ‘them’. This distinction generally leads to bias and prejudice that one’s own culture is superior to other cultures. In other words, people tend to favor of one’s in-group and discrimination against out-group, thereby leading to cultural conflict. Cultures are embedded in almost every conflict. It affects the way we frame a relationship with others and also identifies how people in a different culture see and deal with conflict in a different ways. For example, conflict between a teenager and parents is influenced by the generational culture, and conflict between religions occurs when one race feels superior to the other.


Ethnocentrism occurs when the groups tend to be ethnically centered and hold the belief of superiority of one’s own ethnic group; they believe that their own culture or group is better and more important than others. Ethnocentric individuals judge a so-called out-group only by cultural differences such as behavior, language, religion and customs based on their own values, attitudes and standards.


picture credit: bhmschool Blog

These two maps below give examples of how some people think American see the world and Asia.


picture credit: The Big Picture blog


picture credit: Asiapundits Blog