The Echoes of the Mind (157) Cultural Dimensions

Cultural Dimensions

Our lives are not only dominated by the inanities of our contemporaries, but also by those of men who have been dead for generations. Each inanity gains credence and reverence with each decade that passes after its original promulgation. Since one cannot possibly talk back to one’s ancestors, their ill-conceived constructions are commonly more difficult to get rid of than those built in our own lifetime. ~ Peter Berger

Dutch social psychologist Geert Hofstede developed a framework called cultural dimensions theory that characterizes major aspects of social interaction at the societal level, and describes how a society’s culture impacts its members’ behaviors.

The only way to change bias is to change culture. You have to change what is acceptable in society. People today complain about politically correct culture, but what that does is provide a check on people’s outward attitude, which in turn influences how we think about ourselves internally. Everything we’re exposed to gives us messages about who is good and bad. ~ Jennifer Richeson

Hofstede proposed 6 factors along which cultural values may be analyzed by degrees: social stratification, group affinity (individualism versus collectivism), gender orientation (male dominance), uncertainty tolerance, time horizon, and indulgence inclination. 1 crucial factor Hofstede left out: morality. A 2016 worldwide survey concluded the obvious: societal institutions have a corrupting influence on the population, as Russia, China, the United States, and many other nation-states illustrate.

Economic systems, institutions, and business cultures shape people’s ethical values, and can likewise impact individual honesty. ~ Austrian economist Simon Gächter & American economist Jonathan Schulz