Edited By Michael B. Hinner
Beyond Cultural Differences: An Integration of Eastern and Western Perspectives
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Introduction to Beyond Cultural Differences: An Introduction of Eastern and Western Perspectives
By Young Yun Kim
Young Yun Kim notes that today’s world is more intercultural than ever before due to the fact that people travel and move more often than ever before. At the same time, the internet has made communicating with people around the world possible. That is why natives and non-natives routinely come into face-to-face contact with one another in their daily lives. While these encounters are unique in individual circumstances, such encounters are contributing towards an increasingly globalized intercultural environment, Kim states. At the same time, cultural traditions clash with one another and increased ethnocentric behavior seems to be on the upswing. The author wants to know whether it is possible to coexist peacefully in such an environment while incorporating various viewpoints and values across cultures. That is why Kim compares Eastern and Western cultural traditions with one another to find out if such a synthesis is possible.
The author notes that Western traditions see the universe as dualistic and materialistic with people needing to bring about change. In contrast, the Eastern view is more holistic, dynamic, and inwardly spiritual with the world changing itself. Consequently, the West emphasizes analytical abilities while the East focuses on perceiving and knowing things synthetically. While the West divides the universe into good and evil, the East assumes a holistic approach in which both good and evil coincide. The West sees...
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