Understanding Cultural Diversity It would be impossible to learn upfront about all of the different cultures a speech-language pathologist might encounter in practice. Considering this, plus the desire to avoid stereotyping, how might professionals prepare to deal with issues of cultural diversity? You’re right. It would be impossible to learn about all ... Clinical Consult
Clinical Consult  |   September 01, 1991
Understanding Cultural Diversity
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Noma B. Anderson
    Howard University, Washington, DC
Article Information
Clinical Consult
Clinical Consult   |   September 01, 1991
Understanding Cultural Diversity
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, September 1991, Vol. 1, 9-10. doi:10.1044/1058-0360.0101.09
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, September 1991, Vol. 1, 9-10. doi:10.1044/1058-0360.0101.09
It would be impossible to learn upfront about all of the different cultures a speech-language pathologist might encounter in practice. Considering this, plus the desire to avoid stereotyping, how might professionals prepare to deal with issues of cultural diversity?
You’re right. It would be impossible to learn about all of the different cultures one might encounter. A more realistic goal is to strive for increased cultural sensitivity toward cultures different from your own. In this regard, it is important first of all to understand what culture involves. What is culture? According to one definition (Porter & Samovar, 1976), culture is

the cumulative deposit of knowledge, experience, meanings, beliefs, values, attitudes, religions, concepts of self, the universe, and self-universe relationships, hierarchies of status, role expectations, spatial relations, and time concepts acquired by a large group of people in the course of generations through individual and group striving. Culture manifests itself both in patterns of language and thought and in forms of activity and behavior. These patterns become models for common adaptive acts and styles of expressive behavior, which enable people to live in a society within a given geographical environment at a given state of technical development, (p. 7)

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