Beyond Cultural Identity: Reflections on Multiculturalism

In order to understand what this paper is all about, it is very important to know what Multicultural conceptualization is about. Therefore, according to Constantine & Ladany (2000), describes multicultural conceptualization as the extent to which therapists/ psychologist identifies and integrate cultural factors into conceptualizations of the etiology and treatment of a client’s presenting concerns. Thus, the film I choose for this paper is Jodhaa Akbar. The reason I choose to write my final paper on this film is because it’s a cultural identity am unfamiliar with and would like to explore.

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Furthermore, Jodhaa Akbar is a sixteenth century marriage of alliance that gave birth to true love between the greatest Muslim Mughal Emperor that ruled Hindustan, Jalaluddin Mohammad Akbar and the young Hindu Rajput princess Jodhaa. As a matter of fact, this marriage alliance had to take place because the Mughal empire plans to attack Amer. Hence, King Bharmal (father of the princess) resentfully makes a peace offering and a proposal to strengthen relations by his daughter’s marriage to the emperor himself to avoid war. Akbar agrees to the marriage as it will be a strong alliance and long-lasting peace between the empire and Rajput’s.

On the other hand, Jodhaa the daughter of King Bharmal of Amer, was already betrothed to another Rajput king and her dowry was her father’s crown, which will be passed to that Rajput king, after his death. However, Jodhaa completely resented all she wants is to marry the Rajput king, she was betrothed to previously.

Correspondingly, the character of interest in this film is Jodhaa. She is a warrior princess, brave, bold, courageous, loyal to her community, and intelligent. Although this may be true, about Jodhaa nevertheless, the context of her life is as follows: she is a young Hindu lady experiencing fear, anxiety, misery, angry, depressed, shame, resentment, and moodiness. However, there are three concepts I will be discussing as a result of this context and the concepts are; Ethnocentrism, Islamophobia, and Racism.

Islamophobia

Islamophobia is a religion-based prejudice that appears to represent a linear development. It can also be seen as an individual’s fear related attitudes towards Muslims and the religion of Islam. Furthermore, Islamophobia is the rejection of and discrimination against Muslims. Nevertheless, being racist does not necessarily mean being Islamophobic; just as being Islamophobic does not necessarily imply being racist (Fernando 2009).

Equally important, the fear of Islam is based on the negative emotion of fear. For instance; Jodhaa was so afraid of this new culture she’s about to embark on because the beliefs, practices, norms, lifestyle of the Muslims are so different from that of the Hindus. Thus, she writes a letter to Sujamal, her cousin, pleading for him to come and rescue her from the marriage. Lee et al., (2009) states that Islamophobia is the fear of Muslims and the Islamic faith.

In addition, the journal article titled Fear of Muslims, it shows us that there are two factors that correspond to the component of the fear system and these are cognitive Islamophobia which represents the cognitive appraisal domain of the fear system. Under this factor, Muslims and Islam are evaluated as threats to one’s safety and well-being. For example, in the film Jodhaa Akbar, the Muslim Mughal empire was constantly going into battle with other surrounding cities because they want to be in power and take control of the nation. Also, in the film, it is seen that any city that won’t surrender to the Muslim Mughal empire will be attacked, but the only people they don’t attack were the cities who surrender under their leadership example: the Amer kingdom.

Despite, the submission under the Muslim Mughal leadership they never treated the Hindu’s community well, they increased taxes on the food items and charge tax pilgrimage on them. In like manner, the other factor affective-behavioral Islamophobia represents the response domain of the fear system that is associated with the avoidance of potential dangers. Hence, its emotional discomfort and avoidance-oriented behaviors lead to withdrawal-oriented activity. For instance, in the film Jodhaa Akbar, Jodhaa fears and lack of trust made her not to accept Akbar wholeheartedly. She was so resentful of him, she would not let him touch her, have any intimacy, and no emotional affection towards him.

Moreover, this concept of Islamophobia impacted the character Jodhaa negatively. It affected every area of her life socially she was not able to mingle around freely except with her maids and only those assigned to her, emotionally she felt withdrawn and reserved, psychologically she was depressed and filled with misery that the mom had to give her a vial poison to take and kill herself instead of her to go through the pain.

However, as a clinician the way I will be addressing this issue, especially, from a professional context is to first understand my clients’ worldview that will give me the clinician an idea of areas that needs exploring. Jun (2010) mentions that understanding the client from his worldview requires the practitioner to understand her own worldview, which is based on her ability to be aware of her own values, beliefs, biases, prejudices, racial identity development, thinking patterns, the impact of systematic privilege/ oppression, and internalized privilege/ oppression on her worldview.

Afterwards, I will be incorporating scientific inquiry into clinical inquiry. Jun (2010) states that, one of the ways to become an effective practitioner is to acquire the ability to apply psychological research methodology critique skills to the therapeutic setting. Therefore, as a clinician, I will be using the CBT technique to help address Jodhaa issues such as fear, anxiety, and depression. CBT is a psychotherapeutic approach that integrates behavioral and cognitive principles, and research with behavioral therapy.

Additionally, the main focus of CBT is to replace negative and unproductive thought patterns with more realistic and useful one. Moreover, my client Jodhaa has a strong religious background so the specific therapy I will use is the RCBT and the method will be the ABCDE steps of Albert Ellis (1962). A is activating; understanding what situation occurred around the time of the negative emotions. B is beliefs; understanding the thoughts that went through the client’s mind. C is consequences; understanding the clients emotional and behavioral attitudes. D is disputing; identifying and challenging those unhelpful thinking styles involved in their thought process. E is executing; here the need to use client’s religious beliefs and practices as a resource to help confront and change dysfunctional beliefs such as making Jodhaa see that Islam is there to protect and care for their women as jewel and there is nothing to be afraid of.

Ethnocentrism

Ethnocentrism is such that develops racial and religious differences where individuals believe that they are better than other individuals for reasons based on their heritage. Thus, hierarchical and dichotomous thinking are the basis for ethnocentrism and ethnocentric biases (Jun 2010). In addition, according to the Very well mind article titled Looking at how cultural differences influence human behavior, Kendra Cherry defined Ethnocentrism as a tendency to use your own culture as the standard by which to judge and evaluate other cultures.

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Beyond Cultural Identity: Reflections on Multiculturalism. (2019, Apr 10). Retrieved November 30, 2022 , from
https://studydriver.com/beyond-cultural-identity-reflections-on-multiculturalism/

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