Essay On Collectivism And Individualism

787 Words4 Pages
There are many standards defining and measuring a culture, some of these are obvious from one culture to another and others need some analysis before recognizing them. Two of these traits are collectivism and individualism, which differ greatly from country to country and culture to culture. In addition to defining those, the possibility of coexistence of the two traits will be examined.

First, collectivism simply defined is the idea of everyone being a part of a larger group and all behavior stemming from this. More specifically, collectivism includes looking at the needs of those in your group before looking at your own, readiness to cooperate with your group, shared beliefs, and happiness based on the welfare of those around you.

The outworking of this looks like families being defined as more than just parents and siblings but including aunts, uncles, grandparents, and even
…show more content…
The family itself is collectivistic in that you always can rely on them and count on them for support. This still applies even with the individualistic thought of “pushing the young out of the nest”. Though the family promotes individual independence, it still accepts the collective formation and interaction of the group. Though both do not exist in complete uniformity within a culture they can both exist to some degree. Personally, based on the above example, I think collectivism exists more within individualistic cultures than individualism in collectivistic cultures.

Though different, collectivism and individualism both have value within their contexts and show the values of their people. Collectivism values the individual’s membership and participation in the group as a whole. Contrarily, individualism esteems the individual’s ability to separate himself from the group and think for himself. Though often not recognized, both of these dimensions can exist within a society and add depth to its
Open Document