Intercultural Tensions

Topics: Racism, Ethnic group, Race and Ethnicity Pages: 5 (1390 words) Published: April 7, 2010
Theme 1) Insiders and Outsiders: Although strategies for reducing intergroup tensions do exist, it is unlikely that misunderstandings and hostility can ever be entirely eliminated: agree or disagree.

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It is through extensive research in international relationships with the ever-present theme of insiders and outsiders that this essay has been cultivated. While strategies to reduce intergroup tensions exist; religious, ethnic and racial reasons will continue to cause violence and disputes in the international community and will never come to an end. For centuries, discrimination between races has caused harm in society through slavery and segregation. Ethnic cleansing, ethnic pluralism, multiculturalism and any other attempts made to bring ethnicities together or to separate them are too often the causes of disputes and wars. Religion has produced an immeasurable amount of damage worldwide to society, and is one of the largest creators of separation between people. The above statements will be examined further in the following portion of the document. It will use; wars, disputes, bad political decisions and the past thousand years of history to express the point that intergroup tensions will always exist. Religious tensions

Religion is one of the greatest proponents for violence between people of all time. Christianity has caused wars since it was erected roughly two thousand years ago, not to mention, the religious wars that were fought before that time. Some explain the violence as consequences of different religion’s dogmas, to their specific faith. For instance, if a person lives their life abiding by the Ten Commandments and following Jesus then they can go to heaven. However, that means that they must sacrifice their ability to steal, kill, covet thy neighbour’s wife, et cetera. Now, if a person from another religion is also sacrificing certain actions so that they can reach their promised afterlife, then there is a direct conflict on a religious basis in that monotheistic world. If these made up people both believe that there is only one god, and they are both under different expectations in order to be allowed into the holy afterlife, then of course there will be conflict. When considered on a much larger scale, the conflict becomes increasingly dangerous. The war between the United States and Iraq right now was started over religion. The Islamic terrorist organization Al-Qaeda attacked U.S. soil on September 11th 2001 in the name of Allah, which caused the U.S. to retaliate. Currently, the war is still prevailing, seven years later. There are many efforts to end the war in Iraq however after analysis of the situation, the answer is that the soldiers must stay there as a present force.

Ethnic Tensions
Persistent clashes among ethnicities are a major indicator of the never-ending hostility and misunderstanding of cultures. Ethnic pluralism has caused countries to revaluate their heterogeneousness, labour migration and expulsion, which has caused interethnic catastrophes that often result in civil war. When different ethnicities start migrating into an area the locals of that land become worried about preserving their culture. This worrying, usually evolves into negative impacts on the community due to hostility felt towards the forced change on the locals. The term “ethnicity” is defined as a way to identify characteristics, such as cuisine, traditions, common ancestors or nationality to a specific group. From that, the volatile actions and conflicts that are disputed among ethnicities are more understandable when considering the family involved. The sense to protect ones family may provoke a person to fight, “If group members are potential kinsmen, a threat to any member of the group may be seen in somewhat the same light as a threat to the family.” (Horowitz, 1991, p. 4). The hostility...

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