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ERIC Number: EJ907854
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Sep
Pages: 9
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0895-4852
An Analysis of the Myth of Cultural Equivalence
Lange, John
Academic Questions, v23 n3 p339-347 Sep 2010
In this article, the author offers a "Pierce-ing," rational dissection of the notion of cultural equivalence that exposes the hypocrisy of its purveyors. He tackles three major argument lines--the Probabilities Argument, the Internal-Division Argument, and the Change Argument--and proves that it is simply very improbable that culture, in any interesting sense, could be equivalent. In passing, one might note that if all cultures are equivalent, with the result that it is inappropriate to criticize another culture, then, by parity of reasoning, all cultures being equivalent, it seems that it should also be inappropriate to recommend, approve, praise, or commend another culture. The author finds the notion of cultural equivalence anthropologically dubious, if not unintelligible. If such a claim is intended to be factual, putting aside the difficulties of characterizing what the entities are that are supposed to be equivalent, namely, cultures, its proponents owe the people a methodology by means of which such an equivalence, or its absence, might be empirically determined, namely, an empirical test, or tests, by means of which their claim, if it is a genuine factual claim, a genuine hypothesis, might be established, or refuted. (Contains 2 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A