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Paradoxes of Culture and Globalization
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Paradoxes of Culture and Globalization



© 2008 | 288 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

"A truly extraordinary book! The range of knowledge revealed by the author is quite astonishing and the material presented is done so in a clear and unambiguous writing style."The book includes astonishingly varied perspectives on issues that will impact the hoped-for positive consequences of globalization. I felt I was being informed by an expert who grasps the complexity of the issues involved in ways that make them clear and useful. If I was teaching a course that had anything to do with globalization and/or culture, I would assign this book—and if I knew of someone who was being assigned to another country, I would require him or her to read this book."

—Benjamin Schneider, Valtera Corporation and Professor Emeritus, University of Maryland

What is a paradox? Why are cross-cultural paradoxes essential for understanding the changes that are occurring because of globalization? Encompassing a wide variety of areas including leadership, cross-cultural negotiations, immigration, religion, economic development, and business strategy, Paradoxes of Culture and Globalization develops cross-cultural paradoxes essential for understanding globalization.

Key Features

  • Highlights over 90 paradoxes structured in a question/discussion format to actively engage readers and provide an integrative overview of the book
  • Presents key issues at a higher and integrative level of analysis to avoid stereotyping particular cultures
  • Facilitates class discussions and the active involvement of class members in the learning process of culture and globalization.
  • Enlarges individuals' conceptual understanding of cross-cultural issues
  • Focuses on both traditional and controversial topics including motivation and leadership across cultures, communicating and negotiating across cultures, immigration, religion, geography, economic development, business strategy, and international human resource management

Intended Audience

This is an excellent text for advanced undergraduate and graduate courses in International Management, International Business, Comparative Management, World Business Environment, Cross-Cultural Management, Cross-Cultural Communications, and Cultural Anthropology in the departments of business and management, communication, and anthropology.

Meet author Martin J. Gannon! www.csusm.edu/mgannon

Martin J. Gannon is also the author of the bestselling text Understanding Global Cultures (SAGE, Third Edition, 2004) and Cultural Metaphors: Readings, Research Translations, and Commentary (SAGE, 2000).

 
PREFACE: A THIRD PERSPECTIVE
1.1 PARADOXES, EDUCATION AND TRAINING  
1.2 EXERCISE: INTRODUCING THE BOOK  
1.3 A NOTE ON WRITING  
1.4 ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS  
 
PART 1: CONCEPTUAL FOUNDATIONS
 
CHAPTER 1: THINKING PARADOXICALLY
1.1 ESSENTIAL CONCEPTS  
1.2 LIMITATIONS  
1.3 TAKEAWAYS  
1.4 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
1.5 EXERCISES  
 
CHAPTER 2: CONCEPTUALIZING AND PERCEIVING CULTURE
2.1 CONCEPTUALIZING CULTURE  
Paradox 2.1 Why are there so many definitions of culture?  
Paradox 2.2 Can there be a very large and a very small number of cultures?  
Paradox 2.3 Can collectivists be self-centered and selfish?  
Paradox 2.4 Value paradoxes exist in all cultures. For example, how can a national culture value freedom and dependence simultaneously?  
Paradox 2.5 How are cultural values and cultural practices related?  
Paradox 2.6 Does culture matter?  
Paradox 2.7 Are demographics more important than culture?  
Paradox 2.8 Should we advocate only one perspective on culture?  
2.2 PERCEIVING CULTURE  
Paradox 2.9 Do proper introductions and greetings simultaneously involve kissing, bowing, and shaking hands?  
Paradox 2.10 Are cultural stereotypes valid?  
Paradox 2.11 Are the distinctions between levels of culture relevant in a globalizing world?  
Paradox 2.12 Do insiders understand their own cultures better than outsiders?  
Paradox 2.13 Can global citizenship and the effects of root cultures exist simultaneously?  
Paradox 2.14 Can cultures change quickly?  
2.3 TAKEAWAYS  
2.4 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
2.5 EXERCISE: CHAPTER 1  
2.6 EXERCISE AFTER EACH CHAPTER  
 
PART 2: BEHAVIORAL ISSUES
 
CHAPTER 3: LEADERSHIP, MOTIVATION, AND GROUP BEHAVIOR ACROSS CULTURES
Paradox 3.1. Framing leadership: Is the essence of leadership being stuck on the horns of a dilemma?  
Paradox 3.2 Who is more effective: The instrumental/visionary/transformational leader or the Headman?  
Paradox 3.3 When should a leader involve subordinates in decision making?  
Paradox 3.4 Can an effective leader be someone who publicly humiliates subordinates?  
3.2 MOTIVATION  
Paradox 3.5 Is the relationship between motivation and ability additive or multiplicative in the prediction of individual success and performance?  
Paradox 3.6 Can an individually-based need hierarchy exist in a collectivistic culture?  
Paradox 3.7 Do effective executives attribute success to themselves or to others?  
3.3 GROUP BEHAVIOR  
Paradox 3.8 Are there free riders or equally-responsible contributors in small groups?  
Paradox 3.9 Do the personalities of individuals primarily reflect the influence of culture both in general and in small groups?  
Paradox 3.10 Should multi-cultural groups be managed differently than single-culture groups?  
3.4 TAKEAWAYS  
3.5 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
3.6 EXERCISES  
3.7 ANSWERS  
 
CHAPTER 4: COMMUNICATING ACROSS CULTURES
4.1: LANGUAGE  
Paradox 4.1 How can knowing the language of another culture be a disadvantage?  
Paradox 4.2 How can languages be rapidly dying while becoming more influential?  
Paradox 4.3 Critical words and phrases: How can there be immediate recognition by  
Paradox 4.4 Are proverbs effective descriptors of a culture?  
4.2 CONTEXT AND BEYOND  
Paradox 4.5 Can a culture be simultaneously monochronic and polychronic?  
Paradox 4.6 Can a culture be simultaneously low-context and high-context?  
4.3 SYMBOLISM  
Paradox 4.5 Can a culture be simultaneously monochronic and polychronic?  
Paradox 4.6 Can a culture be simultaneously low-context and high-context?  
4.3 SYMBOLISM  
Paradox 4.7 How can the same phenomenon represent different symbolic meanings?  
Paradox 4.8 How can the same phenomenon represent different symbolic meanings?  
4.4 TECHNOLOGY AND MEDIATED COMMUNICATION  
Paradox 4.9 Can face-to-face communication be functionally equivalent to mediated communication, either individually or in small groups?  
Paradox 4.10 Is the Internet integrating the world or creating wide differences?  
Paradox 4.11 Is colonization or communitarianism winning in the battle for the Internet?  
Paradox 4.12 Why is the information superhighway a poor metaphor for describing modern communication systems such as the Internet?  
4.5 TAKEAWAYS  
4.6 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
4.7 EXERCISE (CRITICAL INCIDENT)  
 
CHAPTER 5: CROSSING CULTURES
5.1 CULTURE-BASED ETHICS: RELATIVISM VERSUS UNIVERSALISM  
Paradox 5.1 Are ethical norms and standards universal or relative to the situation?  
5.2 GENERIC CULTURES AND ETHICS  
Paradox 5.2 Are there universal ethics across generic cultures, or do ethics vary by the type of generic culture?  
5.3 EXPATRIATE PARADOXES  
Paradox 5.3 Is the general stereotype of the host culture valid?  
Paradox 5.4 How can the Expat manager be simultaneously powerful and powerless?  
Paradox 5.5 How can the Expat manager be simultaneously free of home country norms and restrained by host country norms?  
Paradox 5.6 How can the Expat manager simultaneously accept the ideal cultural values of the home culture and realize that they do not exist in the home culture or only in attenuated form?  
Paradox 5.7 How can the Expat manager resolve the conflict between contradictory demands of the home office and the host culture subsidiary?  
Paradox 5.8 How can the Expat manager simultaneously give up some home country values and strengthen other home country values?  
Paradox 5.9 Is it possible for the Expat manager to become more cosmopolitan and more idiosyncratic simultaneously?  
Paradox 5.10 How can the Expat manager think well of the host culture and avoid being taken advantage of?  
Paradox 5.11 How can the Expat manager be simultaneously at home anywhere in the world but fit comfortably nowhere?  
5.4 UNDERSTANDING CROSS-CULTURAL INTERACTIONS VIA CULTURAL SENSEMAKING  
5.5 REENTRY TO THE HOME CULTURE  
5.6 TAKEAWAYS  
5.7 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
5.8 EXERCISES  
5.9 ANSWERS TO THE TWO-ITEM SURVEY  
 
CHAPTER 6: CROSS-CULTURAL NEGOTIATIONS
6.1 FUNDAMENTALS AND BEST PRACTICES  
6.2 CASE STUDY: ENTERING THE CHINESE MARKET  
6.3 NEGOTIATING METAPHORS  
Paradox 6.1 Is chess more influential than the Chinese board game of Go for strategy and negotiation?  
Paradox 6.2 Why do veteran international negotiators from one national culture frequently complain that their counterparts from a dissimilar national culture are simultaneously both very sincere and very deceptive?  
Paradox 6.3 When negotiating, is it best to make the opening offer or respond to it?  
6.4 TIME, FACE, AND THE YINYANG DYNAMIC  
Paradox 6.4 How can time be considered as three circles (past, present, and future) as well as only one circle?  
Paradox 6.5 Is the yinyang dynamic exclusively Asian?  
Paradox 6.6 Is there only one type of face?  
6.5 TAKEAWAYS  
6.6 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
6.7 CASE STUDY: GENERATOR AND ITS ASIAN PARTNERS  
 
PART 3: THE BROADER CONTEXT
 
CHAPTER 7: MULTI-ETHNICITY, RELIGION, GEOGRAPHY, AND IMMIGRATION
7.1 MULTI-ETHNICITY  
Paradox 7.1 Do multi-ethnic groups impede or facilitate the formation of national cultures?  
Paradox 7.2 Is there, or will there be, a clash of civilizations?  
Paradox 7.3 Can national cultures exist in a multi-ethnic and borderless world?  
Paradox 7.4 Should all cultural practices be equally acceptable?  
7.2 RELIGION  
Paradox 7.5 Must religion be anthropomorphic?  
Paradox 7.6 Does a religion necessarily require dogmas and creeds?  
7.3 GEOGRAPHY  
Paradox 7.7 Do geographic maps reflect cultural beliefs?  
Paradox 7.8 Has “the death of distance” nullified the importance of geography?  
7.4 IMMIGRATION  
Paradox 7.9 Will the issue of immigration derail globalization?  
Paradox 7.10 How can restricting immigration facilitate and promote it?  
Paradox 7.11 Is immigration compatible with an equality matching culture?  
7.5 TAKEAWAYS  
7.6 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
7.7 EXERCISES  
 
CHAPTER 8: ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND CULTURE
8.1 BACKGROUND  
8.2 TRADE, DEMOCRACY, AND OPEN AND FREE MARKETS  
Paradox 8.1 Are democracy and free markets opposed to one another?  
Paradox 8.2 Does trust increase trade among nations? Does increased trade lead to conflict and war among nations?  
8.3 CULTURE AND CHANGE  
Paradox 8.3 Are institutions more important than culture for explaining economic development?  
Paradox 8.4 Does economic development and globalization lead to individualism?  
Paradox 8.5 Why do citizens vote for and accept stationary bandits as political leaders?  
8.4 TAKEAWAYS  
8.5 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
8.6 EXERCISE  
 
CHAPTER 9: GLOBALIZATION AND CULTURE
9.1 RISK  
Paradox 9.1 Can global economic integration occur without political and cultural integration?  
Paradox 9.2 Is globalization a myth?  
Paradox 9.3 Is globalization an old or a new phenomenon?  
9.2 UNCERTAINTY  
Paradox 9.4 Is there a reasonable probability that a global financial collapse will occur and undermine globalization?  
Paradox 9.5 Does globalization encourage nationalism?  
Paradox 9.6 Are nations becoming more and less powerful simultaneously because of globalization?  
Paradox 9.7 Can one nation dominate the global economy and political system?  
Paradox 9.8 Is globalization doomed?  
9.3 POLITICAL AND SOCIAL ISSUES  
Paradox 9.8 Does globalization increase prosperity and inequality simultaneously?  
Paradox 9.9 Who are the winners and losers in a globalizing world?  
Paradox 9.10 Is increased education the anti-dote for outsourcing?  
9.4 TAKEAWAYS  
9.5 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
9.6 EXERCISES  
 
CHAPTER 10: STRATEGY, BUSINESS FUNCTIONS, AND INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
10.1 STRATEGY  
Paradox 10.1 Is there an ideal mode for entering the global marketplace?  
Paradox 10.2 Is there an ideal structure for the global firm?  
Paradox 10.3 Are organizations worldwide becoming more similar?  
Paradox 10.4 Is China a very large or a very small market?  
10.2 BUSINESS FUNCTIONS  
Paradox 10.5 Can accounting and financial systems be standardized or harmonized throughout the world?  
Paradox 10. Should global advertising be tailored to each national and ethnic culture?  
Paradox 10.7 Is it possible to create and operate airplane-based metropoli (the aeropolis) for efficient global logistics and transportation?  
10.3 INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT  
Paradox 10.8 How can IHRM be both central and peripheral when going global?  
Paradox 10.9 How should the conflict between internal pay equity and the forces of the external marketplace be resolved?  
Paradox 10.10 Should multi-national corporations impose their values when going global?  
Paradox 10.11 Which works best in a global firm, individual-based or group-based reward systems?  
Paradox 10.12 Is the role of IHRM different from that of domestic-only HRM?  
Paradox 10.13 Are HRM requirements similar throughout the globalizing world?  
10.3 TAKEAWAYS  
10.4 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS  
10.5 EXERCISE  
 
References

"Paradoxes of Culture and Globalization belongs on the bookshelf of everyone interested in the interplay between culture and globalization. This book, as it stands, is an important contribution to the extant literature, especially for use in teaching international management. I recommend it heartily."

Nakiye A. Boyacigiller
Sabanci University, Istanbul, Turkey

"This is a very engaging read filled with real-life examples that both academics and practitioners will readily enjoy, and it introduces theory so deftly and in such a down-to-earth manner that even undergraduate students won’t realize that they are learning communication theory."

Nicole St. Germaine-Madison
Technical Communication

Presents a new way to examine culture which is more realistic.

Dr Susan Bosco
School Of Business, Roger Williams University
July 31, 2014

thinking through intercultural competency in courses and for the institution. this book will be for a conflict management course.

Dr Lisa Withrow
Practical Theology: Leadership, Methodist Theological School in Ohio
June 23, 2014

Too high level reading for Soc 235 course.

Interesting articles but reading was too dense to parcel out particular details.

Students are demanding more graphics, visuals and less word boxes.
Thanks as always for the review copy!

Mr Mark Caldwell
Sociology Dept, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
December 13, 2012
Key features
  • There are 92 easily-remembered paradoxes highlighted within a traditionally-structured parts/chapters format and a question/discussion format for each paradox within the appropriate chapter. They provide the reader immediately with an integrative overview of the book.
  • The book phrases each of the 92 paradoxes so that specific cultures are not mentioned and simultaneously employs research on these cultures to highlight key issues at a higher and integrative level of analysis, e.g., comparing individualistic and collectivistic or group-focused cultures. This allows the discussion to move beyond a simplistic treatment that may lead to stereotyping particular cultures inaccurately.
  • None of the 92 questions/paradoxes focus on any specific culture but, rather, on a higher level of analysis.
  • Emphasizes a nuanced rather than a black-and-white or positional approach on the 92 paradoxes, culture, and globalization. This facilitates class discussions and the active involvement of class members in the learning process.
  • Enlarges the manner in which individuals frame or structure their conceptual understanding of cross-cultural issues.
  • Both the instructor and class members can see how and why the 92 paradoxes are framed and discussed, and they are encouraged to offer their own points of view.
  • Examines a wide variety of sensitive topics, including motivation and leadership across cultures, communicating and negotiating across cultures, immigration, religion, geography, economic development, business strategy, and International Human Resource Management. This allows the instructor and reader to focus on both traditional topics such as communicating across cultures and more sensitive and controversial topics, such as immigration, religion, and inequality.

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