The Pros And Cons Of Ethnocentrism

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Ethnocentrism is a silent problem which many people are not aware of. Some scholars have defined ethnocentrism as “the making of judgements” based on criteria of one’s cultural groups. It is characterized by applying those criteria in judging other behaviors and belief of people who may be from the different cultural backgrounds. Bennett, a founding director and CEO of the Intercultural Development Research Institute (IDR Institute), has defined ethnocentrism as “assuming that the worldview of one’s own culture is central to all reality”. He also suggested that people who has ethnocentric mindset tend to use their own worldview to interpret other’s behavior and that the idea of a “universal truth” is usually based on one’s own value. Ethnocentrism…show more content…
Ethnocentrism is a major reason for divisions amongst members of different races and religious groups in a society. In international relations, ethnocentrism creates conflicts and inhibits resolution of conflicts. There are extreme forms of ethnocentrism that pose serious social problems such as racism, colonialism and ethnic cleaning. It is difficult to completely prevent ethnocentrism but it can be decreased by raising awareness of it. In general, ethnocentrism has been described as an individual psychological disposition which has both positive and negative outcomes. On the one hand, ethnocentrism serves as an antecedent towards “willingness to sacrifice for one’s central group” and help in constructing and maintaining one’s cultural identity. On the other hand, ethnocentrism leads to misunderstanding, viewing their cultural way of living as “natural” and what is going on in other cultures as…show more content…
People may develop biases toward or against an individual, an ethnic group, a nation, a religion, a social class, a political party, theoretical paradigms and ideologies within academic domains, or a species. Biased means one-sided, lacking a neutral viewpoint, or not having an open mind. Bias can come in many forms and is related to prejudice and intuition.
Bias on outgroups: When some individuals are categorized as being part of one group, they are considered part of the "ingroup"; others are considered to be part of the "outgroup" Members of the outgroup are viewed as less similar and, as a result “ingroups” may have biases against them. Thus, the outgroup bias includes negative categorizations, feelings, or ideas about people who are not part of our ingroup.
Outgroup biases also mean the person associates more desirable and positive traits to their in-group members as opposed to out-group members. Individuals also tend to overestimate the similarities within groups and the dissimilarities between groups. That means the person sees the individuals in another group as being very alike (out-group homogeneity effect), but they see the differences between separate groups as being much greater than they actually are.
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