Culture and Psychology 3rd Edition by David Matsumoto, 532 Pages Cultural diversity is one of the most important topics in the world today. Here in the United States, we live, work, and play with an increasing number of people from all cultures, countries, and walks of life. New immigrants alone make up 10% of the total U.S. population, and that does not include all of the cultural diversity that has existed in this country for decades. In many other countries as well—in Europe, Africa, Asia, and Oceania—people of different countries and cultures come together more today than ever before. While this increasingly diversifying world has created a wonderful environment for personal challenge and growth, it also brings with it an increased potential for misunderstandings that can lead to confusion and anger. “Diversity” is a buzzword for “difference,” and conflicts and misunderstandings often arise because of these differences.
Cultural diversity is one of our biggest challenges. Corporate America is attempting to address that challenge through workshops, seminars, and education in diversity throughout the workforce. The educational system has addressed diversity by hiring and retaining faculty of color and infusing material related to different cultures throughout the curriculum. Government has attempted to deal with diversity through policies such as equal  employment opportunity and affirmative action.
At the same time, the challenges that face us in the name of cultural diversity and intercultural relations also represent our biggest opportunities. If we can meet those challenges and turn them to our favor, we can actualize a potential in diversity and intercultural relations that will result in far more than the sum of the individual components that comprise that diverse universe. This sum will result in tremendous personal growth for many individuals, as well as positive social evolution.
It is in this belief that this book was written—to meet the challenge of diversity and turn that challenge into opportunity. Doing so is not easy. It requires each of us to take an honest look at our own cultural background and
heritage, their merits and limitations. Fear, rigidity, and sometimes stubborn pride come with any type of honest assessment. Yet without that assessment, we cannot meet the challenge of diversity and improve intercultural relations.
In academia, that assessment brings with it fundamental questions about what is taught in our colleges and universities today. To ask how cultural diversity colors the nature of the truths and principles of human behavior delivered in the halls of science is to question the pillars of much of our knowledge about the world and about human behavior. From time to time, we need to shake those pillars to see just how sturdy they are. This is especially true in the social sciences and particularly in psychology—the science specifically concerned with the mental processes and behavioral characteristics of people.

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