This book brings together a group of scholars from diverse disciplines to interrogate everyday life events in various interpersonal and organizational contexts so as to answer an age-old question: what happens when (carriers of) cultures meet, or, when East meets West? The contributors to this volume argue that, rather than assume clashes of civilizations, assimilation, conversion and essentialism to be the expected outcomes of cultural encounters, we should focus our analytical attention on processes rather than outcomes; on emergence, dialectics, contradictions, ironies and paradoxes, and complexity. We should focus on attempting to learn and grow, to synthesize and integrate, to create and innovate, to change and transform, at personal, micro, macro and global levels. Or, in one word: hybridity.
Contexts of cultural encounters analyzed in this book range from business organizations, through individual travels, to personal philosophies, and from mechanical models to complex systems as social imaginaries.
This book is based on a special issue of World Futures: The Journal of General Evolution.
1. Introduction: Thinking Freely, Acting Variously, or Thought As a Practice of Freedom Chan Kwok-bun and Chan Nin 2. Hybridity and its Discontents: Strategies of Adaptation of Hong Kong’s Professional Immigrants from Mainland China Chan Wai-wan and Chan Kwok-bun 3. Innovators or Strangers? The Returnees in Hong Kong Chan Kwok-bun and Chan Wai-wan 4. Dilemmas of Diversity: A New Paradigm of Integrating Diversity Charles Hampden-Turner and Ginger Chih 5. Cultural Hybridization: A Third Way between Divergence and Convergence Chan Kwok-Bun and Peter J. Peverelli 6. Understanding Hybrid Identities: From Mechanical Models to Complex Systems Nikos Papastergiadis 7. Creativity, Culture Contact, and Diversity Alfonso Montuori and Hillary Stephenson 8. Autonomous Cross-Cultural Hardship Travel (ACHT) as a Medium for Growth, Learning, and a Deepened Sense of Self John L. Lyons