Cultural Imperatives


Peoples living within the encompasses of cultures associated with very different ethnicities often imbue radically different moral imperatives, through identification processes carrying across generations. Such cultural imperatives (for example, Confucian) prevalent within one culture may not have any direct equivalent within another culture (for example, Islamic). Customised identity instruments should therefore necessarily incorporate such emic moral imperatives as ascertained through ethnographic research. Ascertaining such emic features of identity obviates procedures that depend on the translation of questionnaire and psychometric items from one culture and language to another, since significant moral imperatives of the other culture will not be represented by the translated items. Only through ethnographic comprehension of the indigenous culture can the emic imperatives be ascertained for inclusion in the customised identity instrument.

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