Essay on Exploring the Cultural Interactions of Individuals Through Daily Interactions

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1704 Words
Date:  2023-03-02


The social aspect of individuals manifests through daily interactions and occurs both in formal and informal settings. Irrespective of the primary reasons for the interactions, it is undeniable that at some point, ai individual interacts with the other and in the process, cultural interaction inadvertently occurs. Some cultural aspects are mundane; hence can only be detected through in-depth analysis while some are evident in real-life contexts. Whenever two people encounter in any setting, what happens is cultural interaction (Chopp, 2017). The people only act as cultural agents and manifests it in their language, clothing, cuisine, exchange of pleasantries and myriads of other modes. In essence, human beings cannot be objectively understood outside cultural realms because they are social agents which imply the entrenched influence of culture in defining them (Shaules, 2007). Sometimes one can be fooled to believe that they have invented their behaviour or way of life, but in reality, the behaviour is tacitly dependent on the contemporary culture. For a successful and beneficial cultural interaction to occur, the agents (people) must have the competency to be flexible and accommodative. In the absence of this flexibility, compromise and understanding, suspicion and stereotype, which is the culmination of intercultural bias become prevalent. Bias in intercultural communication thus results from the failure of cultural agents to appreciate diversity and accommodate a different way of life. Intercultural bias occurs either due to outright prejudice or stereotypes (explicit) while others occur unconsciously (Scollon, Scollon & Jones, 2011). Various interventions have been developed on how to identify and deal with explicit bias. Nonetheless, there is difficulty in assessing and counteracting implicit bias due to its sublime nature. Based on this background, this paper explores what constitutes culture and manifestations of implicit bias in intercultural communication. It then delves into exploring ways of dealing with implicit bias in the context of cross-cultural communication context.

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

Meaning and Scope of Culture

Classically, culture denotes the way people interact with and experience the world. This means that culture is just as diverse as the people themselves. However, based on the fact that human beings are social agents, their perceptions are expressed within the prescribed limits of the society for which they are part. Therefore, a more comprehensive understanding of culture is that it encompasses the way a group of people, organization, nations, or group of groups of countries interact with or experience the world. Understandably, any two or more societies cannot have an utterly identical culture. Imperatively, culture distinguishes members of one social group from the other (Shaules, 2007). Culture has a strong correlation with ethnicity, race, religion, gender identity, language, belief patterns, and behaviour. This reality means that every aspect of human interactions is deeply rooted in or manifests their cultures.

Generally, how an individual understands themselves and frame behaviour within the realms of humanity as well as conceive each other is a product of both conscious and subconscious inclinations (Scollon, Scollon & Jones, 2011). While some human behaviour is partly influenced by genetic information, their manifestation heavily relies on the environment. This overreaching role of the cultural environment on human beings is well reflected in the nature versus nurture theories of behavioural development which show that people are primarily social constructs. This means that whenever two people from different cultural backgrounds interact, they replicate the ideals of their cultures. Intuitively, an individual from a culture that is dominated with prejudice, and stereotypes is likely to replay such in regular interactions unless they have intercultural competence (Dai & Chen, 2014). In this sense, intercultural competence is an individual's ability to successfully interact with others from a different culture by overcoming culturally motivated barriers.

Manifestations of Implicit Bias in Intercultural Communication

Intercultural communication is a broad concept that explores the dynamics of communication across distinct cultures and social groups, as well as how culture influences such interactions. Implicit bias is the unconscious and automatic judgments which people have about individuals or groups that are different from their own. This form of bias is intertwined with an individual's' cultural affiliation. In the previous two decades, cultural and sociological studies have focused on how implicit biases interlink with cultures and influence intercultural competencies (Dai & Chen, 2014). In an increasingly culturally diverse world, cultural bias is commonplace and is likely to make ordinary interactions very unstable. Misunderstandings that derive from cultural misunderstanding are likely to undermine the quality of social interactions and jeopardize the effectiveness of sustained beneficial cross-cultural relationships (Chopp, 2017). Implicit bias manifests in various unique forms, including Familiarity Bias, Confirmation Bias, and Selective Perception Bias.

A cognitive stereotype is a form of implicit bias in which an individual is predisposed to judge another person or group based on what they have learned about them, irrespective of whether such information is factual or sheer rumours (Haselton, Nettle & Murray, 2015). A typical example of implicit cognitive bias is when someone has learned that jihadist tendencies are shared among the Asian communities, he or she is likely to consider an Asian as a jihadist or terrorist even if not one. Learned information makes one believe that an individual from a social group is expected to act in a predictable way which is the hallmark of the theory of planned behaviour. Despite not having material evidence that a person has a particular form of conduct, the mere knowledge that he comes from a specific social group perceived in one specific way immediately triggers the brain to pass judgments (Beadel, Mathews & Teachman, 2016). Often, these judgments are based on bounded rationality. In this case, it is clear that an individual does not make a conscious judgment, but the brain clicks automatically n the basis of stored or reinforced information (Haselton, Nettle & Murray, 2015). Interestingly, cognitive biases are beyond the conscious control of humans since the brain will react in a preconditioned pattern.

Implicit bias also manifests through an individual's brain attempt to verify or confirm some information that was pre-learned. For instance, one may have read or heard some information about a particular society that inclines their brain to focus primarily on verifying the truth or falsity of such ideas (Chopp, 2017. This confirmation denies the bearer the ability to conceive anything else from the host culture since the focus is on searching the views they had in mind. This bias can be so terrible since most of the time, the knowledge that an individual has about the other culture is either misinformed or inadequately informed, which may lead to frustration and unconscious social confinement. It can be frustrating for someone to enter another culture with a rigid mindset that they will only experience a pre-informed cultural pattern (Haselton, Nettle & Murray, 2015). This means that the person's learning processes about other aspects of the culture that he was ignorant about stops. Confirmation bias is a threat to acculturation and successful interactions with people of different cultural backgrounds.

Selective perception bias is another impact bias is a tendency in which people have a tendency to either ignore or dispose of information that either inconsistent with their belief or cause them discomfort (Beadel, Mathews & Teachman, 2016). Ideally, cultural communication involves making compromises and being flexible to understand what another culture does, how they do it, and why so. Selective perception biases thus undermine an individual's ability to embrace different cultures (Chen, 2017). It undermines the essence of cultural diversity and makes individuals develop cultural rigidness which results in closed mentality and a tendency to ignore even potentially useful information. It may result in having a generalized idea about a community which is potentially harmful to fostering intercultural harmony.

Implicit bias result in cultural misunderstandings, misinformed aggressions, closed cultural identify and difficulty in attaining acculturation. The pervasive nature of intercultural bias makes it difficult for anybody to avoid compleyely. Even among the most interculturally competent and exposed, the implicit bias persists (Gudykunst, (2003). The problem with implicit bias thus undermines the extent of cultural tolerance and cooperation among professionals from different backgrounds. The problem may be more pronounced in situations where people who subscribe to different cultures have to work in teams and attain a shared goal.

Dealing With Implicit Bias in the Context of Intercultural Communication

The challenge with implicit biases is that one cannot outrightly know when they overtake their reasoning, behaviour or thought pattern (Chen, 2017). This means that one can only conceive based on the feedback it generates after manifestation. The intricate nature of implicit biases notwithstanding, it is possible to overcome them through conscious cultural awareness and intercultural competence building (Turner & Crisp, 2010). Over time, an individual develops a self-evaluation of his or her cultural limits, notices the potential biases then slowly progresses to a decision making phase. Decision-making phase is a culmination of the self-motivation to restore unconscious behaviour patterns to the conscious level (Mortenson, 2017).

Cultural awareness and flexibility to diverse cultural backgrounds are proactive approaches to dealing with the implicit biases. Through these, one develops intercultural communication competence. Understandably, a culturally aware individual is likely to have overcome prejudices and attain sustained understanding of variant norms, customs, language, dressing, cuisine and social interactions (Turner & Crisp, 2010). It empowers an individual to have self-knowledge while being accommodative of other aspects of life which may not probably be acted or embraced in their own culture.


An individual's culture is intricate, provides the basis of how he or she experiences not only with the world. Also defines how an individual interacts with others within and outside the scope of their own. Cultures manifest in various ways including language, food, clothing, gender identity, value systems and customs. Just the same way culture is invisible, implicit biases too are hidden, which means that human beings being agents cannot control them. Though cultural competence helps to overcome both implicit and explicit biases, it continues to unconsciously define social interactions.


Beadel, J. R., Mathews, A., & Teachman, B. A. (2016). Cognitive bias modification toenhance resilience to a panic challenge. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 40(6), 799-812. DOI 10.1007/s10608-016-9791-z .

Chen, L. (Ed.). (2017). Intercultural communication (Vol. 9). Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG.

Chopp, D. (2017). Addressing Cultural Bias in the Legal Profession. NYU Rev. L. & Soc. Change, 41, 364.

Dai, X., & Chen, G. M. (Eds.). (2014). Intercultural communication competence: Conceptualization and its development in cultural contexts and interactions. Cambridge Scholars Publishin...

Cite this page

Essay on Exploring the Cultural Interactions of Individuals Through Daily Interactions. (2023, Mar 02). Retrieved from

Free essays can be submitted by anyone,

so we do not vouch for their quality

Want a quality guarantee?
Order from one of our vetted writers instead

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the ProEssays website, please click below to request its removal:

didn't find image

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism