Culture & Communications:
The Modern Globalizing Culture:
Growing Communication and Information
Dr. Andreas Eppink
This article is the second of an on-going series of selected chapters excerpted from Dr. Eppink's upcoming book, "Modern Globalizing Culture", and is herein offered in conjunction to an earlier paper by Dr. Eppink, Cross-Cultural Communication in the Age of Globalization, which appeared in the January-February 2002 issue of this Journal. In the following Introduction (Part II) Dr. Eppink presents an historical perspective on the development and interaction of disparate cultures. (For Part I of Dr. Eppink's Introduction, please refer to Modern Globalizing Culture - July-August 2002 Issue)
Introduction: Part II:
The Honor Problem: “We are better”
The foremost Hidden Goal responsible for parochial, and thus restricted views, is Approbation. The cause of much distress and discontinuity. The wish to be respected, and to gain the esteem of others is human. However, if the Approbation-wish rises in the HG-ranking taking a central place in a (sub-) culture, rationality fades away, substituted by absurd calls for respect. The Approbation-wish may become manifested in many ways, especially where the "own" culture’s Glory, Honor, and prestige is highly centered around this HG, and/or similarly around the own group or the leader. As to guarding prestige and status, the leading norm is “what do the others say or think?”. Concerning “the others”, here significant others are meant by: members of the "own" group, "our kind of people" whose opinion is always, per definition, the infallible truth. Even if their opinions are irrational, or the result of gossip.
To preserve the Approbation of one’s in-group, one must constantly watch “the eyes of others” in daily behavior. A negative opinion will threaten someone’s place in the community, and may even dishonor a whole family or clan. One has to “save face”, as a group, and as a group member. Every member of the group has “to know one’s place” (cf. also: “it’s not your place to say so”). The touchstone for correct social behavior is not based upon concrete facts or reason but upon an elaborate Honor and Shame mechanism. This mechanism served stability well as long as it was applied within relatively small groups (e.g. armies, nobility) or (rural) communities which were quite independent, or in large cultures without significant external contacts (e.g. historical China and Japan). Cf. “to know one’s place”, and “it’s not your place to say so”.
In modern times the Honor and Shame mechanism hinders individual initiative, and economic development (with the exception of the “upper-class”).
The reverse side of Honor: “We are offended, we demand respect”: the victim role and martyrdom
An attitude of contempt against all that is “not like us” is strongly linked to Honor. The feeling of “we are better” does not tolerate deviant opinions, “other people”, other classes (especially not - mark the designation! - the “lower” class). Outsiders, the poor, or other races are subjects to be despised (or are, in the mild case, just considered “barbarians”). The Approbation-wish inevitably causes a mismatch of contradictory feelings. Contempt of others brings in its trail the fear of being held in contempt by those more powerful, or those who wish to be so. An attitude of feeling oneself constantly attacked by others who may offend you, or “our people”, inevitably causes sentiments of frustration. Such an attitude doesn’t promote self-development. And it makes bad losers.
On the one side, feelings of pride in belonging to this group (or family). On the other side the fear of contempt, and losing face and honor. The fear to fail, and of being humiliated for it, the fear some weakness will be disclosed. These superiority and inferiority feelings, in alternation, work out badly. Criticism or presumed criticism immediately provokes frustration, and an attitude of “We are offended”. Feelings of impotence are expressed by “We demand respect”. In other words, by playing the role of the offended victim. He who is not respected and honored requires respect, or… takes revenge.
Alike sentiments can easily be exploited by dangerous leaders, for virtually any purpose. Especially in cases in which the leader's frustrated self-esteem is reinforced by an identification with the equally humiliated others. In the chapters on bin Laden and Khomeini this subject will further dealt with. The code of honor is dangerous - as much as it threatens the continuity of individuals, and that of outsiders (individual strangers, other countries or cultures). And it does.
Crimes against humanity in the name of Honor
Because the code of honor is restricted to the "own" in-group, it means that outsiders, and also other so-called “inferiors”, are looked upon as non-persons who can be treated arbitrarily, with or without respect. This attitude favors beating up one’s wife if she is “dishonorable”, or doesn’t “behave” (as one likes). The very same attitude may favor terrorist attacks and suicide commando attacks as honorable deeds. Martyrdom is the ultimate act to prove “we are offended”. In this context, of course, the question of innocent lives never arises.
In combination with the Inviolability-wish, Honor doesn’t tolerate any deviation - and by consequence, limits individual freedom. The honor code favors still another attitude: disdain for deviant behavior of so-called “sinners”. A sinner is anyone and everyone breaking the restricted code of honor. So-called “crimes of honor” are severely punished: stoning adulterous women is just one example. The despising “we are better”-attitude is often directed against what is considered to be the very lowest social class …women. Out of "honorable" jealousy, women throughout the world are treated with contempt, kept confined, separated, exempted of public life, submitted to a wide range of inhuman treatment (e.g. clitorectomy), in the name of God, or in the name of Honor.
Other symptoms of the parochial Approbation-Inviolability-combination are: forbidding books, even burning them, outlawing “degenerate” art (and the promotion of state art, see: communism, Nazi Germany). The Taliban destroyed not only pictures and drawings of human representations in the Afghan museums, but the big Buddha-statues, declared treasures of humanity, were deliberately blown into pieces.
In all these cases, orthodoxy, tradition, or conservatism are no longer serving stability (their original base), rather, they are distorted by fanatic jealousy, out of fear of losing one’s honor.
The negative effect of Honor in Economics
Honor is almost as materialized as money: it can be gathered, accumulated, diminished, lost, etc. By honor, especially by status, one can accumulate the goods and services of those who are dependent upon one (some will call this patronage, others corruption) but honor will buy no economic growth.
The Honor-economy is not, in the first place, a money-economy. The Approbation-wish creates no climate favorable for economic growth. On the contrary. By the honor-codes, too many capabilities are hindered to develop, and too many capable individuals and groups are excluded from economic participation (or restricted to certain activities, e.g. women, the lower class). Honor hinders a wide variety of social contact (the Indian caste system is the most extreme form), which makes collaboration and teamwork difficult to arrange. Personal initiative, personal ambition and upward social mobility are all crippled by the Honor-system.
Up until the present era, throughout Muslim history the distinction between town and country culture had been pregnant. Islam promoted, unintentionally, migration toward towns, and, in its train, urbanization. In the towns were the mosques, the residences of the rulers, and the holy places for pilgrimage. Ever, the towns had a pull effect on the more ambitious peasants and those with the most initiative. Due to communication and information exchange, far less emphasis was put on the code of honor. On the other hand, thanks to continuous immigration, tribal and rural links have been maintained, as have the honor-based values, which revive in particular in times of stress. In addition, the brain drain had negative effects on rural development. With world population and urbanization increasing, less and less space was left for the Bedouin tribes, most of which took refuge in the mountains or deserts, where they remain frustrated but alive and kicking. Sometimes they kick hard.
This is, in a nutshell, the summary of current tribal life, of rural-economical problems, of poverty and Medieval conditions (the romantic may call them “biblical”), not only in the Muslim world but in other regions as well.
Economic help will not be effective as long as the honor-code dominates a culture, and accordingly, genuine development is inhibited. The honor code helps maintain social and political contrasts (let alone corruption). Tribes or factions trying to beat each other in every respect are current matter. Today, it is daily news: Muslim (and non-Muslim) peoples in middle Africa, the Uzbeks and Tsetsenians (among other regions) in the former Soviet Union, the Taliban and other Afghan tribes, and of course, the Palestinians.
The Muslim world today
The Palestinian question
The reaction on loss of honor is revenge, retaliation (the law of talon). Revenge is a precarious matter if you are relatively weak, and if your Control-wish is overruled by the Approbation-wish. Thus is the drama of the Palestinians. Alas, historical analyses, or looking for causes and who was guilty, seldom solves problems. To solve a problem, collaboration, alliances and negotiations are the only means of the weak. My having visited the Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon in the early 1970's, just after their installation, made an impression I will never forget. It’s the worse I have seen. Yet, empathy with the distressed and with the underdog is not enough to resolve a situation.
After all, the idea of “the own nation” alone was not enough either. It fit well into the Approbation-goal. The parochial discord - not only within the Muslim world, but between Palestinian groups as well - resulted in sheer lip-service for their case, or perhaps money for weapons and humanitarian aid out of feels of guilt. The ambitious among the Palestinians changed camp and country for a better life elsewhere. They, too, sent guilt-money.
So those who stayed were the frustrated ones, who, with the “help” of the complaining Western world, received nothing more than an education in complaining. Complaining and the Approbation-wish are synonyms, causing an accumulation of more frustrations rather than solutions. Within this setting of frustration, despair and impotence, a hearth of fanaticism and terror is inevitable. Thereupon came the leader, not dangerous, but a weak leader, one who was not accepted by the several parochial parties, or accepted only in name. He had no virtual power. His own personal Approbation-wishes did not tolerate any valuable leader next to him, nor did it permit him to appoint a strong successor. The Palestinian case was hopeless from the beginning.
This is just an example of parochial dissent in the Muslim world. If not for Israel, we never would have read about the Palestinian case. There are many more situations like that of the Palestinians about which we never hear.
Parochialism and internal dissent in the Muslim world
If Mohammed himself had seen the distortion of his ideas and laws he would have been extremely upset. The very prophet was, in the first place a religious and social reformer. His principal objective was bringing Order. His prescriptions were all but rigid and absolute. They were directed to do away with chaos concerning social relations - zina (chaos) is the central concept in the Koran that later got the meaning of “sin”. His social reforms were progressive and tolerant for his time, especially those concerning the position of women. Mohammed’s rules - in particular the way were are formulated - should be considered in relation to the strain of the epoch; they were fitting into the spirit of the age (7th century), especially in that of the everlasting tribal quarrels. His central theme was the anti-parochial idea of the Umma, or comm-unity. To unite the tribes he proclaimed Jihad, the Holy War.
On a macro-political level, he wanted to bring together all surrounding tribes under the same rules (religious and social Order). The adversarial tribes, once converted to Islam, would build one community (Umma), sharing the same social rules, and would further live in peace. From that time on Jihad would be superfluous.
Mohammed’s hope for unity was lost immediately after his death. The old tribal enmities emerged again.
Sticking to the letter, using texts and quotations out of their context, or simply referring to “Islam says” are easy vehicles to support one’s own parochial views. So, Islam became reinterpreted in many ways, and became an instrument for manipulation by a faction, tribe or leader (see the chapters on bin Laden). Few are those who want to interpret the Koran in the spirit of the ideas of the prophet.
A political unity in the Muslim world never has been realized, not in the prophet’s time, nor later. There is even the question of whether or not Mohammed himself had concrete thoughts on government, considering his not arranging his own succession. Fundamental Muslims think, erroneously, theocracy was the original governmental form of Islam. To them theocracy is Islam. According to Khomeini, bin Laden, and others, Islam is now distorted by Western politics - including colonialism and U.S. expansionism - and adverse Western influences on morality. Islam is, indeed, distorted, but not by the Westerners as Khomeini and bin Laden have said. Islam is distorted by tribes and factions, by theologians and dangerous leaders who called themselves Muslim.
The most curious is that if Mohammed were to come back today, he would find his political ideas of unity and humanity at their optimal best realized in … … the Western world.
Still, more than thirteen centuries after Mohammed, what we see in the Muslim world today are divided tribes and parties fighting each other. “The” Islam doesn’t exist, there is no one Islam, only different interpretations, and mainly parochial views: “What others say is always wrong; what we think is best.” The preciously shared myth of Muslim brotherhood is a fable. In the past, to start a prestige-war to accumulate their Honor, Indian Muslim rulers destroyed first the most illustrious mosque of one of their neighbor Muslim-brothers! Is there perhaps a parallel with the attack on the Twin Towers?
The Muslim world is weak
Muslim culture may have been the mother of Western Renaissance, but after it's smothering it lost any stimulus for innovation, and fell back into a medieval obscurant state of parochialism.
Because of parochial views and internal dissent the Muslim world is weak. Weak on all fronts: theological, social, political, and military.
The Muslim world is theologically weak since it branded it's own Renaissance of the 10th-13th century as heresy, and socially weak due to an increasing number of frustrated and impoverished people in most regions. Politically, the Muslim countries are divided - internally, and externally as well. Muslims fight Muslims.
In the mountainous regions and in other areas of difficult terrain the tribal quarrels prosper as before the time of the prophet. There are two differences. Today, members of each tribe think themselves Inviolable by Islam (which doesn’t help them), and they use modern weapons. But still they are weak since they are not able to ally.
The Muslim world is not uniquely tribal. Islam promoted urban life, as we have seen. However, in the towns - and in the urbanized countries - the tribal differences did not entirely disappear. Most chiefs of states represent, in the first place, their ancient tribe or lineage (like the late the ayatollah Khomeini in Iran, Saddam Hussein in Iraq, Mr. Assad in Syria, and so on); they all have parochial views, and behave in parochial ways. This means, firstly, that they will not collaborate with each other to an extent that they may build a strong political or military force, and secondly, that besides giving lip-service, the “Muslim brothers” are not prone to give assistance to each other, unless for their proper safety. (As Mr. Arafat has witnessed).
On television we frequently can see demonstrations of excited crowds flocking the streets shouting belligerent slogans. Shouting hatred, calling for revenge (especially revenge for being humiliated in their pride and honor), is behavior in reaction to their own parochial views being attacked. Threatening or humiliating “the enemy” is a way to elevate self-esteem. Frightful talk alone is not dangerous. Seldom are the mere slogans put into action.
The boasting US: words the parochial understand
For the Muslim parochials the principal enemy is the US, their symbol of Satan, the symbol they hope to humiliate. Many believe Khomeini was a success for the occupation of the U.S. embassy in Teheran. They believe bin Laden succeeded too. Because America is the omnipresent superpower, visible from Coca-Cola to military intervention. In the past, American policy has been inconsistent. In an attempt to “divide and rule”, one time supporting a particular regime and another time supporting an opposing regime.
Often the US speaks a language all parochials understand: simple, boastful talk, clear statements in black and white terms of the good versus the evil. Certainly, their adversaries will not like it; they don’t have to, provided they understand. Many European friends may not like it either, and consider it nothing more than a boasting eruption of narrow-minded views (and oh, how fearful some are that the boastful US stance will provoke aggressive counteractions!). Others will call it clever manipulation. Be that as it may, those with parochial views will understand this kind of language in its own proportion: meant to humiliate them, and meant to put them back in their place. Stirring resentments of hurt pride may not be quite helpful to resolve problems, but seldom is reacted to other than by threats and hatred. While on the surface this alone may not be considered dangerous, but will too much hatred in the world reinforce terrorist actions (and especially against US targets)? The point is, frustrated fanatics - driven by the bloody mix Inviolability-Approbation-Control - are totally committed to their ideals.
The dangers in Modern Globalizing Culture
Dangerous leaders: the bloody mix
We have to take in mind that modern communication and military technology are not the monopoly of the "good guys". It is modern munitions, especially chemical and nuclear weapons, which make parochial leaders dangerous. They may use their arsenals for prestige, as justification for boastful talk, or to ventilate their feelings of humiliation and hatred. Bin Laden was one example. Hitler, Stalin, Khomeini, are others. All were driven by the same sanguine combination of Hidden Goals. As they started their regimes of terror, most people thought: “They cannot be that bad.” They thought that, if a leader could get a substantial number of followers, they couldn’t be that evil (“Wouldn’t they be controlled!?”). But few can imagine the atrocities dangerous leaders are prone to. One hasn’t to be a fearful person to admit that dangers exist.
Indeed, there exist even regimes that are fundamentally evil. The obstructing Hidden Goals did - and continue to - cause distress and evil for millions of people. Reservoirs of potential followers form the additional danger to frustrated leaders. In regions of dissent, of tribal and political animosity, many people are highly discontent. They too have parochial views. They too feel humiliated. Thus can be used by dangerous leaders for all purposes. For pious religious fanaticism, and for terror as well. These fanatics are the most dangerous characters to be involved in terrorist actions. The internal discord throughout the Muslim world and other regions of the Third World means that a number of weak and impoverished nations have become cradles for terror, and terror has become one of their main export articles.
The seed of terror will flourish well on a parochial soil fertilized by the hatred of a leader striving for expansive power. Extremism is the attempt to attain a bloody mix of Ego-Satisfaction, parochial Approbation, expansive Control and the ultimate Inviolability. In the recent past, Hitler attempted to achieve this, as did Stalin, followed by a string of other little dictators, among them Khomeini and bin Laden. There are other dangerous leaders, and they have many followers. The bloody mix of obstructing goals they try to follow, and they appeal to, can be detected in their using the little words “is all”. “You are nothing, your people is all!”, shouted Hitler. “God is all, man is nothing”, was the ayatollah Khomeini’s pious admonition. In the little words “is all” lies the very danger of the obstructing HG Inviolability. As soon as God, the Nation, the Party, the People are politically proclaimed to be “all”, one should be cautious, then always the implication “the human being is nothing” follows. Those identifying themselves with the “all” are striving for Inviolability. And since God, the Nation, the Party, the People et cetera are invisible, it is their representatives who become themselves “all”. They strive for Control. And in their Ego-Satisfying megalomania they think all is permitted to them.
The unique instance by which they can be called to account for their actions turns out to be the leaders themselves. Within an environment of suppression and the onslaught of “unbelievers” or other “dissidents”, chaos and discontinuity will inevitably be bred. Such dangerous leaders first find easy followers from the ranks of frustrated individuals, and later from members of the well-educated middle class who may be craving a spark of self-esteem.
It is not (Muslim or any other) religion itself that is attacked by the conclusions and views put forth by dangerous religious leaders. What is attacked, and what has to be fought, is the leaders and followers who spread a pseudo-religious version of intolerance, hatred, and terror. In the recent past Nazism and Soviet communism caused much discontinuity, both worldwide as well as for their own people. Within the cultural (Inviolability-Approbation) climate in which these ideologies were adopted, dangerous leaders met a fertile soil for the bloody mix. Today it is Muslim theocracy. It is, again, the cultural climate created and/or dominated by the Inviolability-Approbation-wish. The reasons why Muslim theocratic ideas have propagated at such a large scale in the last half-century are simple: communication facilities, money and arms. Communication facilities became common throughout the world, thereby greatly simplifying organization efforts. Money is available thanks to an increased standard of living, especially by oil revenue. Those believers feeling guilty - rich oil-sheiks, as well as relatively poor migrants - provide large sums. Weapons are plentifully available thanks to greedy merchants, drug-dealers, and divide-and-rule-states. And thus the ideal conditions for militant non-state extremism are created.
As many have said before: the enemy state has disappeared, the new enemy is not visible, and difficult to locate. The main feature is a network of commandos and cells. Secret terrorist cells can emerge anywhere and everywhere, rapidly moving to new locations as their needs demand. The war on terror is a network war, and will require new forms of intelligence. To realize both, coalitions are indispensable.
Point of departure of this book is September 11, and the question about terrorist dangers in relation to culture, threatening Modern Globalizing Culture. The network-character of terrorism -- prospering by modern communication means but not caused by them -- makes the distinction between inside and outside dangers quite arbitrary, especially because terrorism is appealing to all kinds of “Idealists”, regardless of their cultural background or religion. Idealists will be found among young, mostly educated but frustrated individuals. The difficulty of fighting a terrorist network-organization - even a rather local one, if seen in worldwide perspective - is a situation Spain has been acquainted with for more than 40 years.
The conclusion is that terrorism follows the same path as did the multinationals in the past century: investing in organization and distribution, building networks and alliances, thereby, in Chandler’s terminology: building economies of scale and scope in distribution. As Modern Globalizing Culture advances, terrorism has opportunities to advance as well.
“Building economies of scale and scope” was once the prerogative of multinationals. Today, terrorist organizations follow in their footsteps. The international drug-Mafia is another example. Undoubted, they cause discontinuity that can be retraced to obstructing HGs in the bloody mix.
They employ, as do the multinationals, organizing and management talents, in a combination of Control, Communication and Information. A striking parallel. The difference between a terror organization and a multinational lies in the obstructing goals rising in the HG-ranking.
Thus some glaring questions come to the forefront. Are there, perhaps, symptoms in Western Globalizing Culture - and by consequence in its economy - of obstructing HGs? What will happen if obstructing HGs rise in an economy?
Exactly 400 years ago, in the Netherlands, the East-Indian Company V.O.C. was founded. One year earlier the British founded their East-Indian Company, and because both enterprises received a governmental monopoly of commerce with the East Indies, the two countries were at war for a long period. The task and objective of the companies was, very simply, capturing and plundering Portuguese commercial ships. However, the profits being too small, the new objective was the proper commerce of Indian spices. The Dutch company was financed via what was at that time a unique economic innovation: by issuing (certificates of) shares (without the right of the share-holders voting). Two thousand large and small shareholders provided the enormous starting capital, 6.4 million guilders. The dividends were to be paid in the form of commodities, primarily pepper.
Commerce with the Indies was an adventurous undertaking, in all senses. The mentality of the company was one of violence: in the Netherlands the poor were forced to serve as seamen, while in the East Indies the labor was provided by slavery. “Revolts” of the autochthons were bloodily suppressed by men like Admiral Jan Pierszoon Coen (known as "the Dutch Francis Drake"), who, like his English counterpart, was sent by his government to keep "peace" via the acts of attack, plunder and invasion. At the 2002 remembrance of the founding of the VOC, the Indonesian Minister of Development called the company “an instrument of oppression, exploitation, and abuse of power … an adversary of open competition, operating on a monopoly-base, by force of arms. …. Nevertheless, the predecessor of Indonesia as a modern unified nation…”
In many historical cultures, capture and plunder have been the roots of commerce. (The Dutch are just one example.) Greed was not always the principal drive, as expansive Control was a strongly motivated goal (although sometimes the difference may have been very small). Greed is the outcome of the obstructing HG Ego-Satisfaction, which is not merely a characteristic of individuals but is also highly evident within the structural of organizations, and by consequence can lead to the building of a greedy culture. With greedy leaders and followers within an organization's management, both executives and employees tend to build greedy cultures, which are reinforced as greed-induced others are in turn attracted to join these organizations. Greed easily goes together with Status (obstructing HG Approbation) and the strong belief of invincibility (obstructing HG Inviolability), making this particular sanguine mix (as in theocracy) complete. The result is distress and pain for many.
Though certain large enterprises may call greed “growth”, an obstructing HG is nevertheless the driving force behind the actions of today's multinationals. One obstructing HG often attracts another obstructing HG, and soon the bloody mix will arise. No violent crimes will be committed, “only” white-collar crimes. Members of the U.S. Congress called Enron’s top-managers “economic terrorists” who cashed out at the right moment before the company's crash which brought financial ruin to thousands of employees and shareholders. Just an exception in business land? Or an example of the tip of the iceberg? If the latter is the case, the conclusion is that within Modern Globalizing Culture there are many hearths of discontinuity which threaten our Modern Globalizing Culture in the same way terrorism does.
Within the Western world, parochial arrogance (HG Approbation) coupled with excessive consumption and greed (HG Ego-Gratification) are troubling many a mind. If these goals take over and rise in the Western culture’s subconscious ranking system, the outcome will create massive discontinuity causing distress on a grand scale. Enronitis is just one example that unlimited growth -- growth simply for the goal of become ever-larger -- is both nonsensical and extremely dangerous.
All depend upon and are ruled by the major HG's within any culture, especially the individual HG's of the participants. Modern Globalizing Culture is built on Information and Communication. Research promoted technical Knowledge that, today, is used for not only for war but for welfare as well. These researchers have been the successors of the medieval Muslim students who themselves were left without heirs. Since that time the HG Information has risen in the ranking of Hidden Goals. You may hate technical progress, but nevertheless you are using it, creating an internal dilemma much like that experienced subconsciously by the most fundamental fanatics who believe they want to return to their version of what "the good old days" were like.
The fanatics are not opposed to the technical products of Modern Globalizing Culture, they are opponents of Freedom. Freedom is an aspect of the HG Independence. Among the Nomadic people and Bedouins, the Independence-wish was restricted to their clan, and was soon either degraded by settlement and Stability, or hindered by expansive controlling powers. In West-Europe the independence-wish was suffocated by the Stability-wish, leaving Independence in a low position within the HG-ranking. Only heretics preached freedom. Independent individuals were outsiders … or found an escape in commerce. In most historical cultures some degree of Freedom and Independence could flourish only within the range of commerce.
Then came Enlightenment and rationalism. Now, the HG Independence was rising. Supported by technological progress, the individual became less dependent on his group or his environment. However, in the West the tension between the Freedom-wish and the predominant Stability-culture comes up frequently. So does the tension between the wish to Control and that of Freedom, particularly in the United States.
The process of Renaissance and Enlightenment is not yet finished. We have to understand that in each culture all HGs are present. Especially, we have to understand that the four main HGs are, for the greater part, incompatible. This is man’s fate. Notwithstanding, if Modern Globalizing Culture will survive, it must find a balance between all four: Control, Stability, Order, and Independence, giving a chance to all global participants. An immense challenge. This goal can only be realized if, in addition to Knowledge and Communication, the other supporting HG (Goodness) is promoted, and openly expressed in an attempt to improve service and welfare for all people on our planet. This cannot be done by Stability, Order, and Freedom alone.
It is true that the living standard of a people will be improved by the mere progress of Knowledge and Communication. On the other hand, as long as the bloody mix of obstructing HG's dominates within some cultures -- and within some globalizing enterprises as well -- a spiral of terror groups and economic terrorism will obstruct the lives of tens or hundreds of millions. Control as well, even with weapons, might be necessary in the war on these terrors, although this certainly does not mean that Control has to predominate.
Modern Globalizing Culture can be realized if expressions of the four main HGs can be used complementarily, and in a way that assures that the followers of all four main HGs have their own mission.
BWW Society Member Dr. Andreas Eppink received his Doctorate degree in Social Sciences in 1977 from the University of Amsterdam, went on to study Clinical Psychology, and was officially registered as a Psychotherapist. He has worked as a Management Consultant, especially in the television, advertising, daily press, family business, transport, and public administration sectors, including work with the town of Maastricht. Prior to this, as an Anthropologist specializing in the study of culture, Dr. Eppink was a pioneer in the field of migration study, in particular mental health and occupation. In 1971 he founded the Averroes Foundation for the study of these areas. He headed this institute from 1978 to 1983, as it then became state run. He was an intergovernmental expert of the European Committee for Migration in Geneva, a member of the Board of Advisors to the Dutch Minister of the Interior, and an expert with different European committees in Strasbourg and Brussels. Dr. Eppink speaks five languages and reads several more.
 In many American and European regions and sub-cultures a parochial attitude of “We know best“ is still flourishing but the Honor attitude (thus HG Approbation) has not reached the prevailing position the current Muslim culture of the masses is cherishing.
 In this book I will not deal with the more abstract concept of “the others” (or God) who are the ideal role-models for those who are striving after “virtue”, like the Humanists (16th-18th century).
 Those driven by Honor cannot support their losing: African football players of national teams have been literally punished after losing a competition.
 In particular, the second generation country-immigrants brought up by the moral standards of the code of honor have not learnt self-control outside the family, and to respect other individuals than the own family members.
 The vicious circle of violence starts as someone himself is beaten up as a child, to shame and correct him for his behavior. Violence and honor match up well, though, for Honor’s sake, violence should not be showed in public but kept inside.
 The utmost deed of honor is martyrdom but not always makes other victims (cf. Japanese hara-kiri).
 E.g. in Muslim Nigeria, and other “orthodox” Muslim countries.
Romila Thapar, A History of India. Vol. I. 1966. I will add that the mosques
were build for prestigious reasons just as well, as was the promotion of all
art a question of Honor for many a leader, in the Western, the Muslim world,
and elsewhere. The negative consequences for those who had to construct such
works of art don’t have to be explained, if we consider - by example - the
slave work implicated in building the
 Concerning tribal enmity in the Muslim world the same can be said about the tribes in Africa, and in some Asian regions.
 Here the HGs Stability (in Europe) and Control (in the U.S.) are contradicting.
 “… avowed enemies of the United States, that aggressively sought to acquire weapons of mass destruction and that supported anti-American terrorist groups --“.Michael Kelly Wednesday, in the Washington Post, 2002 February 27.
 “Du bist nichts, dein Volk ist alles!”
 I use the term “Idealists” for those driven by Approbation, often combined with Inviolability, two obstructing HGs. These are not the real idealists, driven by Goodness.
 The Dutch VOC was founded on March 20, 1602. The English East-Indian Company on December 31, 1600.
 Growth as such is not the outcome of greed but, in general, an expression of the HG (expansive) Control.
[ BWW Society Home Page ]
© 2002 The BWW Society/The Institute for the Advancement of Positive Global Solutions