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Jeff Brown Michelle Pultoraks Class CO2520T July 20, 2013

Unit 5 Assignment 1 Intercultural Conflict Analysis

I think People are confronted with different world views, so dealing with cultural diversity is a real challenge. Perception is an important basis for how people relate. So, what differences do I perceive, and how are they perceived by society? Of course, gender is seen as "different," and, depending on age, it has a greater or lesser significance. In school, age or school year served as a group of people, increasing membership of a particular ethnic group is perceived as a difference. Some of this stuff could be considered as a Source of conflict. But really is it just some poor excuse for us to continue in our separate, discriminating attitude towards particular individuals or groups? Lets find a resolution to this intercultural communication mess of things, by the use of developing some appreciation for cultural differences. I think this is one of the best ways to start.

We can begin by acquiring culture-specific knowledge of other cultures. For example, if I were to go to another country. "Codes and taboos" that play a role in the everyday life of this cultural group can be included under culture-specific knowledge. But this should not lead to automatically transferring this knowledge to all members of that culture, because ultimately it is individual people who we meet, and not entire cultures.

How about some practical suggestions? I think most often, conflicts are referred to as intercultural conflicts, because this definition makes it easy to ignore the real conflicts. Being true to what the source of the conflict is better than just dealing with the symptoms. One way of doing this is to ask what factors, what parameters and what interests have a significant role in

Jeff Brown Michelle Pultoraks Class CO2520T July 20, 2013

this conflict. That leads us to another concept to think about. The issue of power. The Power of differences I think should be killed with a positive approach, thus offering a chance for resolution. Consider John Burton and his "Human Needs Approach." His strategy includes being aware that we all as humans have at least five identity needs; The need for security, the need for recognition, the need for meaning, the need for connectedness, and the need for action. He states that if one of these needs is violated, it can cause identity problems and lead to difficulties in establishing relationships. Analyzing conflicts with the Human Needs Theory leads us away from our fixation on cultural or other factors and gives us new perspectives on conflict resolution based on a longer-term cooperation. His theory takes into consideration the context of historical, social, and political role in cultural conflicts in the modern day. His Human Needs Theory consists of solving conflicts in identity; that means the question of ones own identity and the gratification of the identity needs are the main focus. This is an approach that leads to long-term cooperation and self-esteem. It means becoming aware of which identity groups one belongs to. This theory also causes us to be aware of processes and dynamics, and this leads us away from a hardening of stereotypes and power structures and gives us the opportunity to develop common goals and to look into the future. Actually, I think this study emphasizes the importance of self-confidence as one of the many solutions, and shows how strengthening the self-confidence of people, if indeed they are willing to change, affects their ability to interact with potential intercultural conflict.

Jeff Brown Michelle Pultoraks Class CO2520T July 20, 2013

Sources: http://www.aces-tools.or.at/start.asp?ID=32&b=121 Schulz von Thun, Friedemann: Miteinander reden. Strungen und Klrungen. Allgemeine Psychologie der Kommunikation , Auflage. Hamburg: Verlag Rowohlt Taschenbuch, 2007. Akkus, Reva / Brizic, Katharina / de Cillia, Rudolf: Bilingualer Spracherwerb in der Migration. Psychagogisch und Soziallinguistischer Teil. Vienna: BMBWK, 2005.