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PURPOSE AND GOAL OF THE THEORYThecentral purposeof the theory is to discover andexplain diverse and universal culturally based care factorsinfluencing the health, well-being, illness, or death of indi-viduals or groups. Thepurposeandgoalof the theory is to useresearch findings to provide culturally congruent, safe, andmeaningful care to clients of diverse or similar cultures. Thethree modes for congruent care, decisions, and actions pro-posed in the theory are predicted to lead to health and well-being, or to face illness and death.190JOURNAL OF TRANSCULTURAL NURSING / JULY 2002
Definition of TermsDue to space limitations, the definition of terms can bestudied in other sources, which are cited in the reference list atthe end of this article.ASSUMPTIVE PREMISES OF THE THEORYDue to restricted space, only a few theoretical premises (or“givens”) are presented as examples, with others found inauthor’s theory references (Leininger, 1991, 1997).Leininger / CULTURE CARE THEORY191FIGURE 1.Leininger’s Sunrise Model to Depict Dimensions of the Theory of Culture Care Diversity and Universality.
1.Care is the essence of nursing and a distinct, dominant, cen-tral, and unifying focus.2.Culturally based care (caring) is essential for well-being,health, growth, survival, and in facing handicaps or death.3.Culturally based care is the most comprehensive, holistic, andparticularistic means to know, explain, interpret, and predictbeneficial congruent care practices.4.Culturally based caring is essential to curing and healing, asthere can be no curing without caring, although caring can oc-cur without curing.5.Culture care concepts, meanings, expressions, patterns, pro-cesses, and structural forms vary transculturally, with diversi-ties (differences) and some universalities (commonalties).Four major tenets were formulated to systematicallyexamine the theory with the researcher’s stated domain ofinquiry (DOI) and the ethnonursing method. An example of aDOI would be “the study of care meanings, values, andexpressions of Mexican rural families with cancer.” Everyword in this DOI is studied in-depth using the four theory ten-ets, which are (a) culturally based care has diversities (differ-ences or variabilities) and some universal (common) features;(b) worldview, cultural, and social structure factors and othersin the Sunrise Model influence care outcomes related to cul-turally congruent care; (c) genericemic(lay, folk, or indige-nous) practices and professionaleticnursing practices influ-ence care practice outcomes; (d) the three predicted theoreti-cal modes for transcultural care actions and decisions are,namely, culture care preservation and/or maintenance, cul-ture care accommodation and/or negotiation, and culture carerepatterning and/or restructuring to provide culturally con-gruent and beneficial care. Besides the Sunrise Model, otherethnonursing enablers are used to rigorously examine the the-ory tenets.