Aspects of Social Interaction
Aspects of Social Interaction
The story of India is a documentary series created by Michael Wood in 2007 as part of the BBC TV season. The documentary captures India’s historical events in six set series, divided in mini-series referred to as The Beginnings, Power of Ideas, Spice Routes and Silk Roads, Age of Gold, The Meeting of Two Oceans as well as Freedom and Liberation. The documentary series offers astounding information concerning India’s spiritual traditions, diverse armed gods and the nation’s mastery of computer technology. The documentary also addresses India’s culture, art, glories and wonders of the society portraying the richness, diversity, culture, landscapes and tragedies noted in the nation’s past.
Ethnocentrism is a belief tendency that holds that a certain cultural group is centrally imperative in a given community by measuring it relatively to other people’s own culture. It acts as a review approach for a particular ethnic or cultural group on issues concerning language, religion, values and behaviors (Ritzer, 2007). Ethnocentrism is used widely in explaining the behavior of individuals towards different cultural entities in various societies. Ethnocentrism bears a contentious factor in its concepts that ascribe superiority to a given community while other comparable communities are accorded an inferior position. Every individual is believed to be ethnocentric and the practice is inevitable since every individual bears his or her own believes towards certain cultural attitudes, ethics and principles.
Ethnocentrism affects individuals, societies and inter-cultural associations in various ways. First, every individual creates a presumption that reveals false constructive attitudes about other people. For example, in the documentary the Anglos observe some working Indians handling crucial and heavy activities yet a prevalent presumption is still held in the Anglos community that Indians are naturally inactive. Additionally, ethnocentrism may cause serious consequences in the society such as racism, colonialism as well as cultural cleansing. Multiple forms of discriminations, especially related to gender, limit individuals in exercising human rights and significant freedoms in all spheres of life (Wood, 2008). Lastly, the influence of ethnocentrism is worth being considered in cross-cultural relations as characterized by high levels of interactions across diverse people and cultural groups.
Personally, after watching the documentary series, I noted that ethnocentrism affected many individuals due to racism, which was commonly practiced in India. For instance, in The Power of Ideas, the episode reveals bigotry perspectives evidenced by some great thinkers such as Alexander the Great towards the Mauryan Empire (Dobbs, & Jeffs, 2009). In fact, most philosophical theorists were highly prejudiced and in most of their outlooks and thus according criticism from the same. Using the given views, I have been able to realize ethnocentrism practices from different countries that I have visited as well as individual associations in diverse societies. In fact, I discovered that in most of these new places that I visited, many cultural societies held themselves as superiors to other local societies as well as me.
Nevertheless, the society of India has varying cultural and religious viewpoints and many ethnic societies lean towards segregation tendencies. India has diverse ethnic groups as well as immigrants but ethnocentrism is commonly practiced in many societies (Mantovani, 2000). From my observation within the documentary, cultural segregation is commonly experienced in at least ninety-eight percent of the Indian communities. A good instance is noted in the six episodes of Freedom and Liberation, evidencing an exploration of the magical LucKnow District culture and the numerous ethnocentrism issues that arose against the same in India. Thus, the LucKnow decided to search for freedom and liberation through hard struggles in order to overcome religious bigotry that they had faced in the Indian nation.
Lastly, I realized that ethnocentrism affects multinational corporations majorly because of the diverse groups within a given organization. It was interesting to identify ethnocentric practices in trading instances. This is achieved through directing high emphasis on consumer needs as an attempt of transferring and using the ethnocentrism concept in a business context. This concept is easily noted in especially in Spice Routes and Silk Roads with the introduction of inter-national associations involving India and other nations in the spice trade. Gold and silk were also supplied to multinational institutions but diverse problems were noted, particularly due to language barriers. Prejudicial factors occurred following the cultural issue in form of language and this led to unsuccessful interactions in trading instances.
Dobbs, R. (Producer), & Jeffs, J. (Director). (January 2009). The story of India [Motion picture]. United Kingdom: PBS Home Video.
Mantovani, G. (2000). Exploring borders: Understanding culture and psychology. London, UK:
Ritzer, G. (2007). The Blackwell encyclopedia of sociology. Malden, MA: Blackwell Pub.
Wood, M. (2007). The story of India – amazing BBC documentary series part (1 of 7). Retrieved
Wood, M. (2008). The story of India. Random House, UK: BBC Books.