In many modern societies, conflicts between states and within the states have resulted in many wars or sometimes-severe violence cases. The wars have resulted in immense destruction of lives and millions worth property. In addition, many conflicts have resulted in disruption of many political, social and economic organizations in many societies (Omotayo, 2005, p.2). Many conflict resolution theories do not consider many local cultures. Specifically, many do not give particular gender roles consideration as dictated by culture. This paper will critically analyze the ties that exist between gender, culture and conflict resolution in relation to Augsburger’s themes.
Culture and conflict resolution
Gender generally describes the characteristics of men and women that are constructed by the societies. In the other hand, sex characteristics are biologically determined. The learnt behaviour in most cases builds up the gender identity of an individual. Culture is an important component in conflict resolution. This is because; culture of a certain community guides its members’ perceptions, judgments and knowledge of ones’ self and other societal members. Many cultural sets may share ethnicity or nationality, but in most cases, they crop up from different generations, class and sex. A cultural message directs the nature of relationships and individuals’ reactions to different conflicting issues (Lebron, 2003, Para 1-5).
Many complications arise in dealing with cultural orientation to conflict solving. The first complication is that culture is multilayered. This makes it hard to make cultural generalizations on any existing conflict. Culture also is in constant change. This makes it hard to make specific assumptions on any cultural group. Thirdly, most cultural practices are elastic. This makes it hard to determine specific behaviours of members of that subculture (Lebron, 2003, Para 7-9). Due to this, it is important to learn the cultural orientation of a certain group involved in a conflict before solving their wars. Culture determines the way we frame and put blames on certain individuals. Take an example of the Gaza war; it is not all about the territorial boundaries. Research has shown that the war is about recognition, poor representation and legalizing of specific modes of living and cultures (Lebron-culture and conflict connections, 2003, Para 1-2).
Themes in Augsburger regarding the differences in conflict styles between women and men
Men and women are regarded to have different conflict resolution patterns. This is attributed to the fact that power over many institutions is more so the family is left to men. This division is based mostly on the gender differences between men and women. Most women’s power is more diffuse and personalized outside the recognized structures existing in many societies. This is even worse when it comes to some communities. For example, in the Islamic society many women are prevented from becoming judges in many courts. Even in acting as witnesses men’s’ evidence is taken as more truthful as considered to that of women (Augsburger, 1992, p.5-6).
Unequal power interaction includes values that many societies value and follow. These values determine the correct society’s morality, economics and laws that govern its natives. In many societies, the sex roles determine which duties women can undertake, the nature of relationships that are acceptable and practices that are acceptable from a certain sex group. This in most cases contradicts the human equality, freedom and dignity that should be accorded to all sexes (Augsburger, 1992, p.24).
To women conflicts take two dimensions: the seen and the unseen conflicts. Due to the realization of the theme of new consciousness, women are becoming rebellious to the obstacles imposed on them by tradition. In addition, many women are demanding accountability on men’s path in conflict resolution. Many issues that undermine women power are being addressed although still tradition ties the efforts (Augsburger, 1992, p.50-51).
Many female styles of conflict resolution are powerful to men’s’, but the existence of both contributes greatly to conflict resolution. Many men approaches are very ‘harsh” in that, there exist a believe that one can either solve a problem or use the problem to earn himself a title. Many women who solve many conflicts never receive credit for it, but instead the praise is placed on men. Many women employ broad networking, partnerships and power based on mutual understanding in solving conflicts. However, men always take paths that can accord them praise on women’s developments. Women go through all the content of the disagreement. In most cases, this is done in consideration of a single sex group, in trying to understand the truth about the conflict. However, because of the cultural orientation on gender of many societies, men will always come in during the mediation process and formalize the proceedings, leaving women with little appreciation. This is attributed to the believe tattoo men “discuss” and have more arguing power than women (Caprioli, 2003, p. 3-6).
Women’s political and social supremacy in some communities is more or almost equal in superiority in comparison to the men’s’. Women aim to maintain their own group affiliations, but in most cases the traditional ties give them no chance of action (Caprioli, 2003, p.7).
Many cultures dictate men and women to function differently. As collier writes, societies dictate that women should work in domestic groupings and men in political functions. For a woman to raise to power, most societies dictate that they have to get backing of a man. This in many societies has forced women to create their own power systems. This is due to a cultural belief that men in most cases help in bringing the family lineage together but women come in and destroy the same (Caprioli, 2003, p.9-13). This places women as obstructing factors to the peaceful coexistence of families.
In most cases, women have disputes with others when it is in their interest. Nevertheless, they always have ways of reconciling the worrying parties. These factors always depend on their own set power structure of facing the problem either directly or indirectly (Caprioli, 2003, p.14-16). In most cases, women’s solutions to conflicts are simple and take no complicated steps so long as the worrying groups accept their mistakes.
Views on Augsburger stance: personal experience
All members of the society must be involved actively in conflict resolution without consideration of ones’ sex. Both men and women have to be involved in peace making efforts. This is because both in one way or another are affected directly or indirectly. The societal discrimination on women’s views on conflict resolution should be “thrown” away. This is because in most cases women and young children feel the brunt of many wars. As Omotayo suggests, the new piece building initiatives must stress on gender uniqueness in trying to solve any societal disputes (2005, p.3).
Women, although taken in most cases as outsiders to many political processes, play a very important role in negotiating peace. This is because women are great socialist in conflict resolution and have good bargaining power in many fields as compared to men.
In conclusion, the conflict resolution measures should not solely end conflicts, but should also help to restore the fighting communities together. Hence, it is important to integrate tactics that aim in reconciling the worrying communities. Techniques to employ include: righteous negotiations, consultations, go between mediation and the use of workshops. To solve conflicts then all genders should be given a chance to give views and resolution measures. (Last, 1995, p.65).
Augsburger, D. W. (1992). Conflict resolution across cultures: pathways and patterns. Westminster: John Knox Press.
Caprioli, M. (2003). Gender Equality and Civil Wars. 2009. Web.
Last, D.M. (1995). Peacekeeping Doctrine and Conflict Resolution Techniques. Saje journals- Armed Forces & Society, 22(2), 187-210.
Lebron, M. (2003). Culture and conflict. 2009. Web.
Omotayo, B. O. (2005). Women and world peace. World library and information congress. 2009. Web.
Late Adulthood Physical And Cognitive Changes
Late adulthood can be described as the age from sixty five years (65) and above. This age constitutes about 7 percent of the entire World’s population with 13 percent in the developed World. This percentage increase has been attributed to increase in life expectancy due to due to breakthrough in medical area; diseases like heart diseases which killed the many people at middle age have reduced drastically. Thus a lot of people are reaching the age of sixty five and above (old age) (Kathleen, 2004. pg. 47-70).
Cognitive and Physical Changes
Old age or late adulthood is characterized by changes in physical appearance, sensory adaptation, memory, brain and health of the person.
Appearance; in old age or late adulthood, the skin starts to get wrinkled, becomes less supple and becomes thin. Small blood vessels set up on the surface of the skin, warts, skin tags and age spot may also emerge on the surface of the skin. As the melanin level drops, the hair starts to become gray and thin. One may become an inch or two due to decrease in the bone mass (James et al, 2008. pg 67-89).
Senses; all the senses reduce as one ages and they include: Vision, which is reduced to dim light and close focus. This means that an old person can not see things that are far, moreover, he or she does not see clearly. This is because the cornea is translucent and scatters light resulting to blurred images. His or her eye lens become stained and inflexible, this reduces his or her ability to read and to distinguish between different colors. Hearing: as one ages his or her hearing is impaired due to reduced blood supply and death of the hearing organ, cilia and the auditory cortex in the brain. The elderly can not detect the high pitch sound or differentiate sounds and may develop suspiciousness or little distrustfulness. This is very risky as it inhibits safety of an individual ((Louw et al, 1993. pg 9-16).
Test and Smell; elderly people can not detect the different tastes of different food especially when the foods are breaded. The taste receptors in the tongue are lost and the tongue does not differentiate sweet and bitter. This has been attributed to excess drinking of alcohol, medication stroke or smoking. The elderly people also loose 60 percent of their ability to smell. Smell makes one enjoy what he or she is eating, smell perfumes, smoke and other odors.
They also loose the perception of all kinds of odors; to them all odors are the same. Touch; the elderly people lose their sense of touch by 70 percent. This is due to slow rate of blood flow in the veins and arteries. This slow circulation of blood makes the reception of sense to the brain slow (Louw et al, 1993. pg 9-16).
Health; being the centre of general well- being of an individual, many old people are regarded to have a good health. Even though as one ages his or her health may be at risk, the elderly people have an ability to cope in areas concerning health and only those that live in a poor areas are at a risk of having heath problems. Old people are capable of overcoming disabilities especially if one has the desire to change or rehabilitate.
Memory; old age or late adulthood is associated with loss of memory; old people receive information at a slower pace and synthesis or process this information for a long time; they do not think fast. They tend to retrieve the information that seemed important when they were young thus they will only take in very little of the current information (American Psychological Association, 1999. ch. 1). Moreover, old people tend to have problems in solving a problem and thus they will use a partner who will assist in solving the problem. However, old people have more wisdom than the young, this is because the old people have experienced more in life and thus they can deal with issues more maturely, listen attentively and apply knowledge more wisely than the middle aged and young adults.
Brain; as people get old, the brain starts to deteriorate as blood circulation is low. The brain decreases in size as less food is supplied and is less active (Kathleen, 2004. pg 450- 478).
Middle childhood is the age between seven to ten years. Both girls and boys have a continuous stable growth in body size as they grow 5-6 cm yearly. However, by the age of 7, boys grow faster the girls in height and they are 2 cm taller them though the weight is the same. This changes when they reach the ten years where the girl becomes I cm taller than the boy and weighs a kg heavier than him. Moreover, the thickness of adipose tissue differs significantly where the girls’ adipose tissue is 25 percent thicker than that of the boys. In middle childhood, running, ball game, jumping and hopping becomes more perfect. This is because the motor skills have improved and thus he child is flexible, can balance and can apply force. The response to stimuli also has improved and he or she can respond faster than a 5 or 6 years old child (James et al, 2008. pg 123-150).
However, the girls are less involved in play and other activities than the boys. For instance, in a school one will find boys dominating the playground while girls are grouped in small groups talking. This has been reflected even in adults where male teacher are more often seen in the field than their counterpart female teachers.
Successful aging can be termed as getting into late adulthood and maintaining an energetic, healthy and vital life. To age successfully one has to stay healthy, fit and engage him or herself with life by contributing to the society. People aging successfully have a number of qualities and these include: participating in life, a person who is aging successfully will participate fully in all activities that go around him or her.
My eldest aunt Tamar who is 70 years old is having a successful adulthood. She is engaged in a number of physical activities such as walking as a daily exercise, cleaning her house and even gardening. This has kept her physically fit and very flexible. She belongs to merry-go round clubs in her home area. Most of the activities there involve planning thus giving her mental exercise. Her current health has been due to her keen and healthy diet. I have chosen her because of how she has managed to put her life in track to date and which have kept her on the move. I am very familiar with her lifestyle. She is living a healthy and active lifestyle which you cannot imagine at her age (Louw et al, 1993. pg 9- 16).
Comparison of adult’s real life to the textbook context
A successfully aging person is outgoing. A person who is aging successfully will be seen more regularly out side his or her home as she or he goes to meet up with his or her friends. In the case, aunt Tamar usually goes out for dates with her other old friend and comes home very happy. She rarely stays inside her house when she has no work to do because she cannot stand a lonely moment. This helps her to be emotionally fit considering that she is a widow.
Another quality of aging successfully is participating in physical activities. A person who is aging successfully will participate in physical activities such as gardening of her or his flower garden. For instance, Aunt Tamar weeds her flower garden occasionally with no help. She also cleans her house and dusts it on weekly bases single handedly.
A person who is aging successfully will have a fit body; this is achieved through doing some exercise to help in flexing the muscles for flexibility. Aunt Tamar walks during the morning hours before taking breakfast as her daily exercise. This helps in keeping the body fit and strong
A person who is aging successfully has a good health which is acquired through eating healthy foods. One should also stop smoking and taking alcohol and also avoid fatty foods that can make him or her increase the level of cholesterol in the body. This reduces stress, fatigue and tension and helps one to sleep better. Aunt Tamar eats healthy foods especially those rich in Iron and Calcium to prevent diseases such as arthritis and other old age diseases. She neither smokes nor takes alcohol. This has helped to make her old age successful. (Kathleen, 2004. pg 78)
In addition, successful ageing is concerned about active engagement in life. In active engagement, an elderly person will engage him or her self in all activities that are happening around. Aunt Tamar participates in merry- go- round group activities in her home area. These merry-go round activities involve both financial and communal affairs which call for corporation. (American Psychological Association. 1999. ch. 2).
Old age or late adulthood is a very delicate age for all those who reach it. Late adulthood has been associated with various diseases which include; heart diseases, diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis among other diseases. Thus all old people should ensure that they eat healthy food and do exercise occasionally (Kathleen, 2004. pg 70-78).
American Psychological Association, (1999), Psychological Abstracts. University of Michigan. Michigan. Ch 1 & 2.
Kathleen, S. B. (2004). The Developing Person through the Life Span. Worth Publishers. New York. Pg 45-78, 450-600.
James, W. V., Thomas, L. C. & Corinne, H. C., (2008). Human Development. University of Michigan. Michigan. Pg. 34-56, 67- 89, 123-156.
Louw, D. A., Van, D. M., & Louw, A. E., (1993), Human Development. Person South Africa. Johannesburg. Pg 9-16.
Socrates’ Method And Philosophical Ideas
The paper’s aim is to study the main ideas of Socrates, the outstanding Greek philosopher. In the work the author studies the Socratic Method, sheds light on Socrates’ ideas of soul, virtue and knowledge.
It would be hard to find a more mysterious and captivating historical figure among philosophers than that of the ancient Greek philosopher Socrates. He was the man whose existence marked the period of the highest development of Greek philosophic ideas, and he is considered to be the most influential of all philosophers. At the same time he is the least known and the most elusive (Taylor 2000, 1). To make the situation clear, it is necessary to explain the reasons for his being elusive. The problem is that Socrates never wrote anything himself, and everything we know about him is taken from the works of his students and followers, such as Plato and Xenophon. It is evident that no matter how hard they tried to create an objective portrait of Socrates, it was distorted by their subjective point of view. However, the importance of Socrates’ philosophy is proved by Taylor, who said that without Socrates “Plato would probably have become a salesman rather than a philosopher” and the whole development of the philosophic idea of humanity would have followed another way of development (Taylor 2000, 1).
Speaking about Socrates’ philosophical idea, it is necessary to consider the method he used. Centuries later it acquired the name “Socratic Method”. It consisted in the following: Socrates performed a discussion in the form of “face-to-face interrogations of another person” (Craig 2000, 847). In the majority of cases the subject of these discussions was some moral value, such as, for instance, justice. Socrates asked the interlocutor to explain his idea about the subject, and then he tested those ideas “for their logical consistency” with the help of other ideas about morality, which proved to be reasonable as well, and the audience eagerly accepted them. Socrates gave the other person the opportunity to do all the taking, but always kept the talk under control (Copleston 2003, 106). In the course of discussion, Socrates managed to give evidence that the primary statement of his interlocutor was inconsistent and illogical (Craig 2000, 847). With the help of his method, the philosopher wanted to make people think more and improve their vision of virtues and morality. The originality of Socrates’ method was that he never imposed his own opinion on the audience directly, but questioned and refuted the ideas of others, thus showing his own point of view. It is necessary to mention that nowadays Socrates’ method is used in research papers, when the initial hypothesis is formulated and proved or refuted in the course of work. However, there are scholars who claim that Socrates has no single method or “no method at all” (Long 2004, 650).
Among the most valuable and influential ideas of “the patron saint of philosophy” was his conception of soul (Taylor 2000, 1). It is worth mentioning, that this idea, which was created more than two thousand years ago, has ever since dominated European thinking (Taylor 2007, 132). Socrates’ definition of soul is unique, as it is neither psychological nor vision of psycho-physics. The philosopher does not reveal what a soul is, he only says that it is something “that in us, whatever it is, in virtue of which we are denominated wise and foolish, good and evil” (Taylor 2007, 139). From Socrates’ point of view, soul gives us opportunity to lead a good life, it is something that gives makes it possible to eliminate evil and do good things. He thinks that the primary aim of every person should be to make his soul as good as possible. He wanted to teach us that we should constantly take care of our souls.
Socrates affirmed that virtues were extremely important for people’s lives, as they made our soul more perfect. “If only we could know what each of the virtues is we could then make an effort to obtain them” (Craig 2000, 847). Speaking about virtues, the philosopher’s views were rather paradoxical. The virtue, as presented by Socrates, was synonymic to knowledge. It was the knowledge of how to act to lead a good life. It is worth mentioning, that no additional factors, such as “disciplining of our feelings and desires” were taken into account in Socrates’ philosophy, as those of minor importance. Socrates asserted that the root of all evil was in human ignorance, people were not bad by nature, but they were bad, because they were deprived of some knowledge. One of the main ideas of Socrates about knowledge is that he knows that he knows nothing. Thus, a conclusion may be made that if a person gets at “wisdom, all particular virtues will follow automatically” (Craig 2000, 847).
Drawing a conclusion, it should be stated that every historical epoch has its own interpretation of Socrates’ philosophy, and that proves its being unique and multidimensional. It is evident now, that the figure of Socrates is an exemplary figure, “a figure which challenges, encourages and inspires” (Taylor 2000, 105). Probably, one of the best statements about the great philosopher will be the following: “unique personality combined with the irresistible conviction of his own words, which penetrate the soul as the bite of the snake the flesh” (Zeller 2000, 100).
Copleston, Frederick. 2003. A History of Phylosophy, Volume 1. Bodmin: Continuum International Publishing Group.
Craig, Edward. 2000. Concise Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy. NY: Routledge.
Long, Christopher P. “Does Socrates Have a Method? Rethinking the Elenchus in Plato’s Dialogues and Beyond”. The Review of Metaphysics. 57 (2004): 650.
Taylor, C. C. W. 2000. Socrates A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Taylor, A.E. 2007. Socrates. NY: READ BOOKS.
Zeller, Eduard. 2000. Outlines of the History of Greek Philosophy, Volume 10. London: Routledge.