Hofstede: Cultures and Organizations - Software of the Mind Culture as Mental Programming

9246 Words Oct 17th, 2012 37 Pages
HOFSTEDE: Cultures And Organizations - Software of the Mind
Culture as mental programming

In Western languages 'culture' commonly means 'civilization' or 'refinement of the mind' and in particular the results of such refinement, like education, art, and literature. This is 'culture in the narrow sense; 'culture one'
Culture as mental software, however, corresponds to a much broader use of the word which is common among social anthropologists: this is ‘culture two’.
In social anthropology, 'culture' is a catchword for all those patterns of thinking, feeling, and acting referred to in the previous paragraphs. Not only those activities supposed to refine the mind are included in 'culture two', but also the ordinary and menial things in life:
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National culture differences
“invention” of nations is recent ... nation is not the same as society

formation of countries in Africa ...

But forces push towards integration, - dominant language, common mass media, national army, ...
Danger in thinking of “typically German” or “French”

- just a matter of expediency

Social anthropology
In the first half of the twentieth century, social anthropology has developed the conviction that all societies, modern or traditional, face the same basic problems; only the answers differ. For some researchers the following issues qualify as common basic problems worldwide, with consequences for the functioning of societies, of groups within those societies, and of individuals within those groups:
1. Relation to authority
2. Conception of self, in particular:
a. the relationship between individual and society, and
b. the individual's concept of masculinity and femininity
3. Ways of dealing with
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