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Stereotypes & Biases and Cultural Competence

Summary

Stories unlock cultural heritage, creating misconceptions, perceptions, and certitude about people. However, for the notions to be justified, the stories must be diverse in all aspects and authenticated (Adichie 00:09:17). “The Dangers of a Single Story” is an awakening message by novelist and writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie that explores how drawing conclusions from a single perspective demeans humanity in general (Adichie 00:00:20).

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One central point is that life is heterogeneous and that a single story does not justify a notion created. In the TED Talk, Adichie explains that the consequence of a single story is that it robs people’s dignity because it emphasizes how humans are different and not similar, making equal humanity difficult. The second point is that we should reject a single story because that is when we regain human dignity” (Adichie 00:18:01). The dignity of heritage is maintained when notions are derived from deep research and the comparison of several other stories.

Main Points

The speaker urges us to avoid stereotyping people or communities with their weaknesses because this portrays them as weaklings and not the strong independent people they are. For instance, Africa has been portrayed as the home of poverty, sickness, and starvation for many years (Adichie 00:06:50). However, the story that Africa is the cradle of humankind and the richest in minerals globally is ignored. Therefore, baseless notions spread malice, which threatens cultural development.

Another point is that cultural competence helps break the barriers that promote strife among diverse people. The reason is that there is never a single narrative about a place (Adichie 00:18:09). This statement indicates that we have to desire to know one another past the flaws or weaknesses portrayed by others against us. We can only become culturally competent if we discover all the community’s social, cultural, religious, economic, and political aspects and interpret the findings without bias.

Additionally, basing information on wide-searched stories is the future of human dignity. The speaker emphasizes this point by sharing a reminisce on how single-based stories change the interpretation of something. For instance, Adichie mentions that one time during her visit to the US, the media depicted Mexicans as people who are fleecing the healthcare system (00:08:35). However, in Guadalajara, she saw a different perspective of Mexicans after witnessing their beautiful culture, how responsible and kind they were, unlike the abject immigrants they were portrayed to be.

Reflection

Power is when one is capable of defining something based on its strengths and not on weaknesses. Adichie’s speech has reminded me of a famous saying that all that glitters is no gold. As an American native, I have seen the good and the bad of my country. Even though the US is home to diversity because of the blend of different cultures, we live under the shadow of the American dream. Someone defining America from a poverty rate perspective would say that it has a high poverty rate among the most developed countries. However, in the economist view, the country is the largest economy worldwide. Therefore, both notions can only be justified after the link between the poverty rate and great economy is identified to ensure no single-story-based ideas are created.

I have learned that research applies in every aspect of our lives because we cannot judge based on mere influence. Therefore, cultural competence is one skill I have grasped from this experience. Cultural competence is appreciating diversity without defining them with a single-story perspective, but appreciating the weaknesses and strengths because it makes the world beautiful. I rest my case citing what I learned from Adichie’s speech: when we focus on the differences, the goodness in the common factors that make us win each day loses power.

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Discussion question

How can civic education help outweigh preconceptions derived from single-storied notions?

Work Cited

Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi. “The Danger of a Single Story.” TED Talks, uploaded by TEDGlobal. 2009. Web.

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StudyCorgi. (2022, November 10). Stereotypes & Biases and Cultural Competence. Retrieved from https://studycorgi.com/stereotypes-and-amp-biases-and-cultural-competence/

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StudyCorgi. (2022, November 10). Stereotypes & Biases and Cultural Competence. https://studycorgi.com/stereotypes-and-amp-biases-and-cultural-competence/

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StudyCorgi. "Stereotypes & Biases and Cultural Competence." November 10, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/stereotypes-and-amp-biases-and-cultural-competence/.

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StudyCorgi. 2022. "Stereotypes & Biases and Cultural Competence." November 10, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/stereotypes-and-amp-biases-and-cultural-competence/.

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StudyCorgi. (2022) 'Stereotypes & Biases and Cultural Competence'. 10 November.

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