Do you favor ethnocentrism or cultural relativism

Early life and education[ edit ] Boas' dissertation: Although his grandparents were observant Jewshis parents embraced Enlightenment values, including their assimilation into modern German society. Boas's parents were educated, well-to-do, and liberal; they did not like dogma of any kind.

Do you favor ethnocentrism or cultural relativism

His absence is particularly regretted because his was a strong voice in discussions over the ethical dimension of conflict resolution, arguing eloquently and passionately in favor of a self-consciously ethical theory and practice of conflict resolution.

Sometime colleagues of Laue, our work over the last decade has argued equally passionately if not as eloquently in behalf of a self-consciously cultural theory and practice of conflict resolution, see Avruch and Black, ; Black and Avruch Is a culturally informed conflict resolution compatible with an ethically informed conflict resolution?

Or does the specter of cultural relativism require that one or the other be dropped? We attempt to show how, in our terms, a methodological cultural relativism can enhance the first, an epistemological cultural relativism handicaps the second, and a normative cultural relativism, properly understood and deployed, need present no threat to the third.


More often than not, this side of Jim was revealed in the course of some negotiation with him over matters he considered principled. Indeed, getting to see and appreciate this determined side of Jim was getting to know him. That underlying strength was always much in evidence when he wrote about, taught, or practiced, conflict resolution.

Three aspects of conflict resolution especially seemed to elicit this toughness: Especially in dealing with community disputes, where emotions ran high, power often was unevenly distributed, and matters of entrenched enmity, race, and racism were often involved, Laue understood that no amount of third-party expertise or process-virtuosity would help as long as the parties could not come together.

Laue approached getting to the table as a sort of technical problem to be solved in the larger context of process implementation. Secondly, Laue analyzed in some depth the different roles a third party intervenor might assume Laue and Cormick The enforcer, in contrast, is usually external to the dispute though a part of the larger system within which it is encapsulated.

Conflict resolution is like medicine, Laue believed. Naive or misdirected intervention could actually do harm, could make matters worse. Therefore, an awareness of the different roles available to third parties, and especially of the relations of power and party-commitment to each role, was central to a conflict resolution practice that put the intervenor squarely on the side of the politically and economically disadvantaged party struggling to attain equity and justice.

It was above all to a vision of social justice; from this vision flowed the determination, the unexpected hardness beneath his surface cordiality. III Ethics, Social Justice, and Empowerment The third aspect of conflict resolution, then, that deeply engaged Laue was the question of the ethics of third-party intervention.

Laue saw this as a problem emerging out of the great success that conflict resolution, on several fronts, seemed to be enjoying from the mids onward.

Inafter a long campaign in which he was one of the leaders, Congress created the United States Institute of Peace. Large foundations, like Ford and Hewlett, began to support research and development. Scholars and researchers responded, increasingly orienting their work towards problems in the field.

Universities not least George Mason began to offer courses and advanced degrees in conflict resolution.

Do you favor ethnocentrism or cultural relativism

Many of them then worked as mediators in alternative dispute resolution ADR programs, as ADR gathered momentum and became institutionalized in the lower courts of many states see Avruch and Black The rapid growth of the field of conflict resolution concerned Laue greatly.

All these factors convinced Laue that attention to ethical issues could not be postponed. Does the intervention contribute to the ability of relatively powerless individuals and groups in the situation to determine their own destinies to the greatest extent consistent with the common good?

Laue and Cormick Note also that power expressed here by its relative paucity for out-parties is a crucial, defining feature of the situation and of the parties. By nature fallible decision-makers who above all seek meaning, humans ought to be treated as ends in themselves cf.

Black and Avruch A just society is one in which public decisions are fully participative, and key resources are adequately and equitably distributed.

In such a society individuals enjoy maximum freedom to determine their destiny consistent with the common good. Because of the dominant role he assigned to power and empowerment, Laue rooted the conceptual logic of his ethics in an understanding of social action.

But consider what remains: In this sense, Laue showed himself to be a consummate realist. Once again, Laue was unambiguous as to the meaning of proportional empowerment: It refers to a condition in which all groups have developed their latent power to the point where they can advocate their own needs and rights, where they are capable of protecting their boundaries from wanton violation by others, where they are capable of negotiating their way with other empowered groups on the sure footing of respect rather than charity Laue and Cormick Secondly, this ban against assuming neutrality extended to the process itself.

Here, Laue differed from many fellow practitioners who seem to put process above everything.Culture is the glue that binds people together in society. It can include norms, values, symbols, and more. In this lesson, explore the two major ways in which people encounter other cultures: ethnocentrism or cultural relativism.

Cultural relativism would be the attempt of an anthropologist to look at a culture, understand it as much as possible and then only make judgments in accordance to the values, norms and morals of that particular culture/5(20).

There are a selection of various variations of cultural relativism, however simply as in different contexts, as famous, relativism is a recoil from absolutism (and vice versa).

Do you favor ethnocentrism or cultural relativism

Cultural relativism is the view that an action is morally right if one’s culture approves of it. The argument for this doctrine is based on the diversity of moral judgments among cultures: because people’s judgments about right and wrong differ from culture to culture, right and wrong must be relative to culture, and there are no objective.

Where as ethnocentrism is the belief in the superiority of one's own ethnic group, cultural relativism tries to avoid the views of ethnocentrism. Therefore cultural relativism strives to avoid judging another culture by the standard's of one's own culture. Sep 29,  · Cultural relativism is the view that cultural differences are limited to things like the way people dress differently and how "exotic" the food they eat is (regardless of whether they actually eat the food; what really matters is whether restaurants that serve it say they do).

Cultural Relativism