How Has Cultural Diversity Affected Society?
Cultural diversity has affected society in many ways throughout history. In recent decades, increased communication and travel possibilities made the transfer of people, and by extension their culture, more widespread. According to A Richer Life, a National Fair Housing Alliance public awareness campaign, cultural diversity creates better communities with more tolerance for differences and an increased ability to solve problems with others.
Cultural diversity helps stimulate the economy by providing new jobs and industries. Globalization has led to an increased ease in travel, making it possible for industries to grow outside of their own nations. New industries create jobs. In schools, cultural diversity improves the quality of a child’s education. Studies show that children who are exposed to a more diverse community are more creative and tolerant of differences. These students learn how to resolve conflict more easily.
Some researchers have found negative consequences of cultural diversity. The Boston Globe reports that increased cultural diversity creates a homogenizing effect, thus erasing cultural difference and the unique characteristics of certain types of people. However, dissenters argue that cultural homogenization creates more unique individuals who are unbound by cultural conventions and allowed to freely explore their personalities. Overall, most research reveals that cultural diversity is successful in teaching people how to be more respectful and tolerant of differences.