Curse: Having Diverse Ethnic Identity

Topics: Multiculturalism, Culture, Identity Pages: 5 (1846 words) Published: March 24, 2013
Multicultural people can be defined as a people who have more than one culture in other words who grew up with more than one cultural identity. A person who grew up with more than one culture is having a mixed ethnic identity. Amin Maloouf, who has mixed ethnic identity, is a Lebanese author, who born in Beirut. His father was from Melikte Greek Catholic community and on the other hand his mother was from Turkey. Also Maalouf (1998) mentions that he has lived in France for twenty-two years, (as cited in Eken, A.N. & Rodrigues, B & Atabas, H.G. & Harris, J & Gunceri, M & Bilgic, M.L. & Tack, S& Onel, Z, 2010, p.255), which shows that he is living three different cultures, in other words he is having mixed ethnic identity. Maalouf argues that “having mixed ethnic identity is not a curse; on the contrary, it is blessing.” As arguments and evidences show that having mixed ethnic identity is not always blessing, it is mostly a curse for some reasons like; psychological and behavioural problems, educational and communicative problems and some problems in team work. Having different cultural identity is having two different cultures both from your mother and father, which will come up with; both having different perspectives and which will make person to remain open-minded. Different perspectives make people to think in different ways also different conversations thus Parekh (2006) argues that “different perspectives intended to equip individuals with the ability to converse in multiple cultural idioms, leading to an appreciation of the complexity of the truth, freedom from ethnocentric practices and the ability to learn from other cultures.” (as cited in McGlynn, 2009, p.300), which makes mixed identical people better than mono identical people. Even though bi ethnic individuals having bad experiences like marginalizing from society and come across with racism. On the other hand also they are experiencing the positive way of having mixed ethnic identity like being open-minded. As Korgen (1998) and Ross (1996) argued that, as a result of being open-minded, people with diverse identity correspond to the situations and people in different ways, thus this makes them to have “ability to see things from different point of views.”(as cited in Abu-Rayya, 2006, p.670). According to what Maalouf says, without any counter argument diverse ethnic identity is blessing just for having ability to see things in different point of views and being open-minded for different situations and different. In contrary what Maalouf has said, that mixed ethnic identity is blessing, in diverse team work there are both positive and negative effects of multicultural diversity but the negative effect of the diversity makes the team performance less effective than non diverse team. With having different cultures at the same time means having various acquirements and being interested in more than one thing as mixed cultural identity provides. Thereby Bodenhausen (2009) argues that team performance will positively affected by mixed cultural members of the team which they come up with various knowledge and skills. By bringing different skills and knowledge together in the group, Somers (2006); Wrap & Mahoney (2008) argue that these differences make other people to think in more sophisticated way, which makes the team performance better. (as cited in Bodenhausen, 2009, p.9) Sharing the knowledge by mixed ethnic members, there emerges a competitive motivation that will increase the performance in the team (Launt & Philips, 2007). Because of these reasons in the group each member of the team will complement each other and it will end with the increment of the team performance. In contrary to this positive situation, there are bad effects of having diversely ethnic members in the team. Trianduis (1960) argues that interpersonal problems and communicative difficulties have occurred by cultural...

Bibliography: Abu-Rayya, H.M. (2006). Ethnic identity, ego identity, and psychological well-being among mixed-ethnic Arab-European adolescents in Israel. Brithis Journal of Development,
Vol, 24, DOI: 10.1207/s1532706xid0604_3
* McGlynn, C. (2003). Integrating education: Parekhian multiculturalism and good practice. Intercultural Education, Vol. 20, DOI: 10.1080/14675980903351938

Tagesson, T.(2008). Ethnic and gender diversity, process and performance in groups of business students in Sweeden. Intercultural Educatiın, Vol.19, DOI:
Uberoi, V.(2008). Do Policies of Multiculturalism Change National Identities? The Political Quarterly, Vol.79, DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-923X.2008.00942.x
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