This book takes a cultural approach to relationships: the cultures, communities and groups we live in shape our interpersonal communication, relationships and identities. In each of these contexts, power relations shape how interactions occur and it is through the lens of culture that we can most clearly see how power works in our lives and our relationships.
A cultural approach to interpersonal communication also is important because in today’s globalized world, we no longer live in isolated communities; we live in multicultural societies. Each of us needs to understand how to navigate in a heterogeneous world; to do that we need to understand how others feel and how others communicate. In this way we may come to understand our own values and beliefs better. Sharing power and using our cognitive abilities to understand the changing world we live in may help us live more sustainable, more ethical and happier lives.