Culture as Comfort:

Many Things You Already Know About Culture
(But Might Not Realize)



A BIG book in a small size (130 pp), accessible in print and e-versions and written for everyone—to stimulate and to enjoy, Culture as Comfort explains how infants and young children quickly and irrepressibly learn the cultural patterns of those around them. They view these as “normal” and “natural”—the way the world is “supposed” to be not as culture. So long as children stay within these cultural patterns, they are comfortable but when encountering difference they—and adults too—sense discomfort. Do they and we fear discomfort and thus shy away from those who we perceive as different or, worse, dislike them or even discriminate against them? If we understand better how we all learn, perform and negotiate culture, how we all favor our ways over others’, then maybe we can embrace these discomforts as opportunities to learn, to expand our cultural comforts…This book challenges readers to discover our cultural comforts and to embrace our discomforts. An important and profound update to viewing culture not as some thing we have but the particular ways we do and think, one sorely needed for the 21st century. Important for educators and parents of all ages and levels.


Table of Contents: (click here to access preview online)

Chapter One: What is Culture? What is Culture to You?

Chapter Two: We Weren’t Born to be Random — Culture as Comfort

Chapter Three: Culture as Comfort is the Way Our Brains Develop Too

Chapter Four: To Be Human is to Integrate Socially

Chapter Five: Encountering “Others”

Chapter Six: Doing Culture More Mindfully



Educators: This book is a must-read for teachers at all levels, but especially for those working with preschoolers and elementary age children. Ever wonder why young children are so eager to judge and categorize each other, how they can be so cruel and yet so loving too? This book explains why.

Students: The perfect book to introduce college students to the concept of culture and how we learn “it” but also our “identities” before we even enter kindergarten. Written to be accessible to students in introductory courses in anthropology, sociology, psychology (child development and cross-cultural in particular), ethnic studies, education, communication, and beyond – yet cutting edge and challenging enough for graduate students.

Parents & Grandparents: We have more influence on our children’s cultural comforts (and discomforts) than anyone else, but we teach “culture” largely without knowing that we’re doing it. With this book we can all do culture more mindfully and in so doing prepare our young loved ones for living more successfully in the 21st century.

Expecting Parents: Need a useful yet unusual shower gift for a new parent or a friend who is expecting? Buy them a copy and see how much they thank you later. No other book explains how children learn like this one…and in a way that engages as well as informs.

Human Resources Professionals, those in Diverse Workplaces, Multicultural/Diversity and Intercultural Communication Trainers: Culture as Comfort explains how we become similar and yet diverse. A great conversation piece for workplace trainings on institutional culture (and how to change it), on working with diverse populations (from the perspective of how we become diverse even if raised in the same country) and so on.

Healthcare Professionals: Have you studied “cultural competence” but felt you still needed more understanding of cultural perspectives that influence approaches to health, healthcare, etc.? This book will healthcare workers to understand more profoundly why their work is culturally challenging—and things they can do to overcome some hurdles they face.