The Gods Must Be Crazy

Topics: Culture, Intercultural competence, Denial Pages: 3 (1115 words) Published: October 7, 2012
The Gods Must Be Crazy

The Gods Must Be Crazy 1 is a South African comedy film which tells the story of Xi, a Bushman from the deep Kalahari Desert. He lived happily with his family and tribe because he thought the god provided them with plenty of things. The film contains various elements about cultural differences and intercultural communication concepts. In this essay, I aim to analyze the film in the light of the concepts of ethnocentrism and values. The literature review of the concepts will be discussed in the first two paragraphs, and a description of the segments relevant to the chosen concepts, followed by analysis and discussion on how these segments informs the concepts and what could help viewers to understand.

The term “Ethnocentrism” was first used by William G. Sumner in which he defined it as "the technical name for the view of things in which one's own group is the center of everything, and all others are scaled and rated with reference to it” (Piotr, 1996). Sumner also stated it normally led to prejudice of one's own group's dominance, and belief of superiority over other groups. In general, ethnocentrism is the judgment of another culture only by one’s own values from their particular ethnic group or culture; particularly language, behaviour, customs, and religion are of concern. Ethnocentrism is classified into three stages: denial, defensiveness, and minimisation. In the denial stage, one is incapable or indisposed to recognise cultural difference, and avoid people from other groups unconsciously, and also strongly maintain a traditional worldview. In the defensiveness stage, one will negatively judge cultural differences. In the minimisation stage, one accepts cultural differences while believing that all human beings are basically the same.

Cultures have values that are generally shared by their members. These values identify what should be evaluated as good or bad. In some cultures, they mirror the values of respect and support...
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