On the Use of the Culture Concept in the Indigenous Psychologies: Reply to Hwang and Liu

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The culture concept used in the indigenous psychologies is important since these psychologies aim to be rooted in the local culture of the research participants. Culture is an empirical phenomenon. Thus, the extent to which meaning content is shared in a society, and by what categories of people, is an empirical issue. It should not be solved by default by the use of a culture concept that assumes that all cultural content is shared. The philosophical and pragmatic-political reasons suggested by Hwang and Liu are not convincing enough to change this conclusion. Moreover, irrespective of the cultural concept used, it is imperative that the researcher has empirically informed him/herself about the cultural understanding of the participants in the study. Finally, the indigenous psychologies are not intrinsically allied with the nation state and need to be seen as a part of cross-cultural psychology.

Keywords: Culture Concept; Heterogeneity; Indigenous Psychologies; Meaning; Reification; Research Programme

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02691728.2011.552128

Publication date: April 1, 2011

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