“Sweden can learn something from Iraq and Iraq can learn something from Sweden.”
You are curious but scared. The differences are noticeable, but you can’t put your finger on what it is. The prejudice flowing, but you don’t know what the truth really is.
Iraq is one of the largest groups of asylum seekers in Sweden and most of us have at some point been in a cultural meeting with someone from an Arab country. Being an immigrant in Sweden is one thing, but to live out your own culture in your own country is another. Stereotypes and prejudices are a battlefield in the society no matter where you come from, but where do these stereotypes and prejudices come from? Is there a subtle truth in everything?
Our aim with this study is a closer look at two very different cultures, Sweden and Iraq, in order to better understand why culture clashes occur. Our challenge will be to put our own opinions and cultural values aside and try to be as universally applicable to all our new knowledge that we will get from this study. In comparison to Sweden, Iraq is something spectacular and powerful that we can’t deny that we are curious about. To compare a collectivist country with an individualistic country like Sweden with all its different cultural and religious aspects are incredibly exciting. Seeing a pattern in why culture clashes and stereotyping occurs is our goal. Join us on the trip to Iraq by Hofstedes five cultural dimensions, and be prepared for new understandings.
Our Thesis is: Sweden can learn something from Iraq and Iraq can learn something from Sweden. Our method is to use carefully selected literature and based on that make separate descriptions for each country. The material we use is Geert Hofstedes five cultural dimensions as well, and a book about the way of thinking in the Arab world.
Although these two countries possess incredible cultural and society differences, we can still see some factors that could be of help between the countries. We have also found many explanations for why culture clashes occur. For example, different male / female dimension of both countries are incredible, providing proof that a meeting involving that particular dimension would create a clash of fully natural causes. To increase our knowledge of these dimensions for both Sweden and Iraq have given us a complete understanding and acceptance of differences.
We also understand that Iraqi immigrants in Sweden do not necessarily represent the Iraqi culture, the stereotypes and prejudices between the two countries do not have to be based in the cultural reality.
/Sarah And Ellen!