Does the conception of what evil actually is differ greatly between the two cultures?

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readerofbooks | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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This is a great question. There are a few points that will help you think about this issue. 

First, from a sociological point of view, there are differences among cultures. Each society has its own commonsense view of the world. For this reason, opinions of what is noble/ignoble, beautiful/ugly and even ethics can differ. For example, polygamy might be considered evil in our society, but in some cultures it is accepted. In light of this, even the conception of evil can differ. 

Second, with that said, to say that conceptions of evil differ greatly begs the question of what is meant by greatly. From all my sociological studies, there is no culture that scholars know of where cowardice is seen as a good thing. Hence, I would say that there are some universal ethical norms within the diversity of differing cultures. 

Third, another important point to consider is the importance of globalization. Because of globalization, there is a greater idea of a global mindset, where norms are held in common in increasing measure. 

In conclusion, conceptions of evil differ from culture to culture, but to use the word greatly is really a matter of opinion. 

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