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For example south africans may follow the european

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Unformatted text preview: e to something referred to as cultural borrowing – a responsible effort to borrow those cultural ways as seen helpful in the pursuit for better solutions to a society’s particular problems [Cateora & Graham, 1999:105]. For example, South Africans may follow the European fashion industry trends. Finally, culture is regarded as a comprehensive concept, thus including almost everything that influences a person’s thoughts, feelings and behaviours. There are numerous interactions around a consumer’s culture [Walker et al., 1999:108 and McCort & Malhotra, 1993:91]. For example, a consumer may not be aware of the extent of her culture’s influence when shopping at a retailer. The multiple interactions of culture are illustrated in figure 2.8. 45 Figure 2.8: The interaction of culture T he individual o Family roles o Social role o Gender role o Work role o Language o Values o Beliefs Institutions o Political o Legal o Religious o Educational CULTURE Societal environment o The media o Marketing o The arts o Fashion o Technology Source: Brassington, F., Pettitt, S., 1997, Principles of Marketing, Great Britain: Pitman Publishing, p. 111. Figure 2.8 illustrates the interaction culture plays with respect to the way in which individuals, institutions and the social environment co-exist. This role is often considered to be the most influential of all possible external influences [Kotler, 2000:161]. Although verbal differences exist amongst cultures, as evident in comparing the English language used in Great Britain, United States, Australia and South Africa, there are nonverbal differences too. This has been described as the arbitrary meanings a culture assigns to actions, events and things other than words [Hawkins et al., 2001:56]. The most significant cases to this study regarding the topic at hand will now be discussed. 46 The meaning of time can vary in two ways across cultures, namely time perspective and interpretations assigned to specific time usage. According to Edward Hall [in Cateora & Graham, 1999:130], the former can be divided into two perspectives. The first, known as polychronic time or P-time, is generally typified by long-term relationship building and simultaneous involvement of activities that receive priority over adhering to schedules. Asians and Indians are examples of cultures that make use of polychronic time. Monochronic or M-time in contrast consists of doing one thing at a time and being prompt and concise when dealing with appointments. This leads to short-term relationships. Time is seen as being tangible and linear object. In other words, it can be scheduled, saved or wasted. German and Australian cultures are typical examples. The last point, regarding time usage, addresses the way that consumers take their time in responding to decisions. Generally, it is assumed that important decisions take more time in arriving at a conclusion or result. This, however, may not always be the case with younger consumers [Hawkins et al., 2001:57]. For instance, an expensive purchase for an...
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