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Contradictory cognition of the other: the dual process of cross-cultural relationship Sociology

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Abstract: Based on the theory of cultural and cognitive intersection in sociology and social psychology, this paper empirically studies the views of most people in Norway on cultural diversity through in-depth interviews, dual process (DP) methods and analytical methods. Globalization has brought new anxiety, opportunities and curiosity, making most people swing between the contradictory goals of self-protection and self realization, and making cognitive self-regulation and behavioral flexibility the value of contemporary life skills. This paper does not identify xenophobic and cosmopolitan attitudes at both ends of the spectrum, but believes that they usually coexist according to the existing research and theories in DP cognitive research,albeit in separate automatic and discursive cognitive systems, within the same individual. As a result, people’s perceptions of cultural and ethnic diversities tend to be ambivalent and contextually malleable – for example, in cases where their deep dispositions appear incompatible with their own self-concept or dominant cultural expectations. Most centrally, the current research proposes concrete strategies to elicit responses from both cognitive systems in the context of interpretive interviews. Secondly, the paper proposes clues that help to identify from which cognitive system interviewees’ conflicting cosmopolitan and xenophobic attitudes originate, thereby enabling researchers to further delineate the specific characteristics of these attitudes, including the mode of cultural learning through which they form, their flexibility or robustness to change, their role in behaviour motivation, and the extent to which they are conscious and controllable.

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