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# 6.4: Final reflection

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In this chapter, we have surveyed two approaches to the study of cultural values: that of Kluckhohn and Strodtbeck, that of Hofstede. The study of values will no doubt remain a vibrant subject for cross-cultural researchers.

However, implicit in Hofstede’s work, in particular, is the idea that there exists such a thing as a national culture. In discussing cultural values, we have temporarily gone along with this suggestion. However, in closing, let us raise the question of whether the idea of national culture actually makes any sense. McSweeney (2002: 110), echoing the sentiments of many other scholars insists that, “the prefixing of the name of a country to something to imply national uniformity is grossly over-used.” In his view, Hofstede’s dimensions are little more than statistical myths.

In the chapters to come, we will suggest that culture is a term better applied to small collectivities and explain why the idea that there is any such thing as national culture may be a mere illusion.

Application

##### For Further Thought and Discussion
1. Choose a community that you know well and decide where you think most members of the community would place themselves within Table 6.1—the Kluckhohn-Strodtbeck Value Orientations framework. Explain your reasoning. Are your views the same or different from those of your primary community?
2. Is your primary cultural community a “high-indulgence” or a “high-restraint” community? How does this cultural orientation align with your own personal orientation? Are you a “high-indulgence” or a “high-restraint” person?

### References

Hamden-Turner, C. & Trompenaars, F. (1997), “Response to Geert Hofstede,” International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 21(1) 149-159.

Hill, M. D. (2002). Kluckhohn and Strodtbeck’s Values Orientation Theory. Online Readings in Psychology and Culture, 4(4). https://doi.org/10.9707/2307-0919.1040

Hofstede, G. (1997). Cultures and organizations: Software of the mind. New York: McGraw Hill.

Hofstede, G., Hofstede, G. J. & Minkov, M. (2010). Cultures and organizations: Software of the mind. (3rd ed.). New York: McGraw Hill.

Jandt, F. E. (2016). An introduction to intercultural communication: Identities in a global community, (8th ed.) Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.

Kluckhohn, F. R. & Strodtbeck, F. L. (1961). Variations in value orientations. Evanston, IL: Row Peterson.

McSweeney, B. (2002). Hofstede’s model of national cultural differences and their consequences: A triumph of faith – a failure of analysis. Human Relations, 55(1), 89–118.

Orr, L. M. & Hauser, W. J. (2008). A re-inquiry of Hofstede’s cultural dimensions: A call for 21st century cross-cultural research. The Marketing Management Journal, 18(2), 1-19.

Rokeach, M. (1979) Understanding human values: Individual and societal. New York: The Free Press.

Schwartz, S. H. (2006). A theory of cultural value orientations: Explication and applications. Comparative Sociology, 5(2-3), 137-182.

The Chinese Culture Connection. (1987). Chinese culture and the search for culture-free dimensions of culture. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 18(2), 143-164.

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