Internalized Culture, Culturocentrism, and Transcendence
Internalized culture is introduced as a psychological, rather than anthropological, construct most useful to counselors. It addresses explicitly both between-group and within-group variations resulting from individual differences in enculturation, and helps to sensitize counselors against overgeneralization and stereotyping. An explication of the construct leads to the problem of defining cultural boundaries. Serious difficulties in definition arise especially when three classes of phenomena are encountered: cultures in transition, cultures in contact, and bienculturation and multienculturation. Arguments are presented to advance the thesis that there is a basic continuity from intracultural to intercultural understanding. In a sense, all interpersonal encounters are cross-cultural in nature. Accordingly, all counseling requires an awareness of cultural processes and the transcendence of one's internalized culture.