Cultural and ethical relativism can often be thought to share the exact same beliefs and be one and the same, but they actually have differences. As taught in lecture, Cultural relativism is when people try and understand and become involved with other cultures that are not their own and do not use their own cultures as the norm. People are free to still have their own opinions that come from their own culture, but they attempt to better relate to those of other cultures and figure out the “why” behind the rituals, beliefs, and values of others. They believe that the ways people behave and perceive others is relative to their culture and cannot be understood without taking their culture into account. Cultural relativism is against ethnocentrism
Can we assume an action is moral just because it is normal and accepted by the majority of people? According to moral relativism, the answer is yes! Relativism is the belief that says moral principles are valid, but are different by individuals (subjectivism) or by culture (conventionalism). Conventionalists like Ruth Benedict claim that cultures cannot judge one another, since they have different principles (Pojman, 514). On the other hand, Pojman argues that there are some serious issues with relativism.
They know that another person may believe in what is right or wrong. Since there is no superior or inferior standard, people have to worry less about judging another culture; less time is spent worrying about that a culture has it wrong, and more time is spent on addressing issues that affect both cultures. There is a certain respect that comes out of this ideology. They may not accept the doings of another person, but they develop a particular mentality that allows them to focus on more important issues other than cultural differences. Respect prevents the division among people of different cultures.
This mean that cultural relativism does not allow one culture to influence the beliefs and customs of others (Wright 2014, p.5). Some people use relativism to interpret, protect and promote human rights in a diverse way according to different cultures (Ayton-Shenker 1995,
Although people may argue that culture should not be tampered with, I strongly believe that there are some objections to cultural practices. People may argue that humans are subjective and are (very) opinion biased in their reasoning, and therefore do not have the authority as an outsider to scrutinize another human beings traditions. However I truly believe that there is a point on the continuum where humans have common grounds also considering the fact that exposure to different cultures has somewhat given us an edge in understanding most cultures –Cultural Competence-- . Despite the importance and prestige of (sexual) cultural traditions and practices around the world, some practices still going on today have be... ... middle of paper ... ..., both good and flawed, and a fine line needs to be drawn that defines what is culturally acceptable. Works Cited BBC News - When circumcision can mean death in South Africa [Video].
You may tell someone “everything is fine” when clearly your facial expression says otherwise. Many people will base their perception solely on your facial expression. Conveying interpersonal attitudes can be helpful when observing and interpreting others nonverbal communication. Someone may approach a subject with another person at the wrong time and may not receive the response they want. Knowing the correct time can help you get the response you are looking for.
When finding yourself in a group having a culture and standard that are unacceptable to you, then you should either alter your belief or persuade group members to alter their standards. Alternatively, you can always have the freedom to seek out for another new set, whose standards reflect or live up to your own. Simply put, apply sound judgments in coming up decisions on when you should conform to a group’s values and standards, as well as when you should go by or advance with your own standards… even at the expense of disapproval, or disliked. Social Composure: Sense of Self and the Want of Being Liked Social composure denotes to a relaxed and calm disposition of a communicator, who does not experience any communication issues and anxieties
The meta-ethical theory of relativism claims that there is no universal moral standard that can be used to evaluate the practices and beliefs of other cultures. For the relativist, 'true' only means 'true for my culture', while at the same time, what someone in another culture deems as true, regardless of the contrast, can be equally so (Williams 1976: 34). This means that the criterion for what is deemed acceptable for a given society, is reflective of the views of the prevailing culture. I disagree with this meta-ethical view. At first glance, the theory of relativism might appear as one of respect and tolerance, however, after closer analysis it leads to sharp division between different societies (Midgley 1993: 175), which in an increasingly integrated and globalised world, cannot really hold.
“Civilization is not something absolute, but… relative…our ideas and conceptions are true only as far as our culture goes”-Franz Boas • Question- Discuss the statement above. Do you agree? Illustrate your view with appropriate examples. - The above statement conveys that people’s actions and behavior should be judged on the basis of their local culture and the values passed on to them rather than on an international or common scale of what is considered to be right or wrong as there cannot logically be a verdict on what is absolutely right or wrong in a world with so many unique cultures, ideas and practices. -I am in agreement with this statement as I believe that it is not possible to judge/condemn the ideas and actions of cultures that
As a society, we abide by certain rules and customs. For the most part we believe that our rules and customs are correct, and we agree with them. We also recognize the fact that other societies have different rules and customs, dissimilar to our own. But are they wrong? Should we judge them for their beliefs?