Cultural Relativism - Essay Example

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He proves it further by pointing out that if other people button their shirts from bottom up instead of top down, that does not in any way mean they…
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Cultural Relativism
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CULTURAL RELATIVISM AS A MORAL THEORY [Insert al Affiliation] The ostensible fact that other people’s tastes does not coincide withour own does not make them imprudent, ignorant or evil. He proves it further by pointing out that if other people button their shirts from bottom up instead of top down, that does not in any way mean they are deranged. According to Nkeonye (1994), relative definition of cultural relativism dictates that it’s a philosophical doctrine which informs us that all proper moral standards are derived from culture; a definition echoed among publications associated with the subject. Whereas the word itself in layman’s dialect means all cultures are equal and no culture is above another, and we should tolerate the differences that make up our cultures.
Today’s cultures are engaging in closer interactions that results in ethnocentrism, which is the negative attitude towards a different culture and cultural relativism, which is attributed to bringing about positive association with different cultures. As a way of acclimatizing to the rapidly changing societal world, cultural relativism has proved to be the rather a proficient doctrine. However, it was brought to the public limelight as a solution to the Nazi holocaust aftermath where therapy proved unreliable. Nazism took form as another cultural practice and the victims had to practice cultural relativism (Nkeonye, 1994). That approach among many others has proved that cultural relativism fails in moral theory scrutiny.
Cultural practices like slavery and genocide have no moral theory grounds to be accepted among the ideals and ideas of cultural relativism. The major problems of cultural relativism are between two cultures; modern and western culture. The modern cultures, be it in religion or government, is abusing the notions of cultural relativism to use social unrest for their benefit simply because it will be understood as a cultural practice when it is clearly immorality. This is a problem of cultural relativism in many ways according to whichever perspective you may prefer. Societal moral standards are being violated and are excused under the notion of cultural relativism. Nkeonye (1994) points out clearly cases such as the media, using the cultural acceptance notion to make pornography acceptable to our children. For instance, today every production obviously violates moral standards.
This is a problem simply for the reason that the western cultures are misusing cultural relativism notions to advance the beneficial agenda of a few; thus utterly violating everything. Research indicates that these western cultures are advancing the agenda to be superior to other cultures (Nkeonye, 1994). Surprisingly, in the same publication it is clear that cultural relativism is the view that no culture is superior to any other and yet the western cultures have used the problem of acceptance and tolerance to be superior.
The other problem of traditional cultures is evident in the way modern cultures view and perceive this culture. Morally, the practices of polygamy and sacrificing have no place in the modern culture notion of cultural relativism. Cultural relativism fuels and supports the violation of its own notions and ideals. The notion of no culture is more superior, cultures are all equally valid and that all beliefs are relative to the individual within a cultural identity when cultural relativism demands one to forego their ‘belief’ and accept all as equal and conventional.
The notions of cultural relativity do not even stand up to severe critical review testing. The notions only make sense in some areas of science, but not sociology and anthropology. This revelation is further bolstered by Nkeonye (1994) who assures the reader that cultural relativism is the hope for the future. In conclusion, the current world perception of cultural relativism has no room for moral theory and if moral theory is applied them you will note an absence of cultural relativism.
Nkeonye, O. (1994). Cultural Relativism: Some Comments. Retrieved February 20, 2015, from$1sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=5&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CEEQFjAE&,d.ZGU\ Read More
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