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A Theory Of Cultural Value Orientations: Explication And Applications

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Chapter Summary

This chapter presents a theory of seven cultural value orientations that form three cultural value dimensions, and permits more finely tuned characterization of cultures. These seven cultural groupings are: West European, English-speaking, Latin American, East European, South Asian, Confucian influenced, and African and Middle Eastern. Using these cultural orientations, the author generates a worldwide map of national cultures that identifies distinctive cultural regions. The chapter addresses the question of the antecedents that give rise to national differences on the cultural value dimensions. The author argues that socioeconomic, political, and demographic factors all impact culture, and are reciprocally influenced by culture. Using a measure of emancipative values drawn from the World and European Value Surveys, C. Welzel, et al. present analyses showing that values indeed mediate the relationship between socioeconomic development and democratization. Finally, the chapter examines some consequences of prevailing cultural value orientations on attitudes and behavior within countries.

Keywords: cultural value orientations; democratization; political activism; socioeconomic development



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