Pedagogy as influencing nursing students’ essentialized understanding of culture
Gregory, David M.
Harrowing, Jean N.
Lee, Bonnie K.
O'Sullivan, Patrick S.
International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship
In this qualitative study, we explored how students understood “culture.” Participants defined culture and wrote narratives regarding specific cultural encounters. The sample comprised both nursing (n=14) and non-nursing (n=8) students to allow for comparison groups. Content analysis of the narratives revealed two broad paradigms of cultural understanding: essentialist and constructivist. Essentialist narratives comprised four themes: determinism (culture defied individual resistance); relativism (the possibility of making value judgments disappeared); Othering (culture was equated to exotica, and emphasized difference); and reductionism (personhood was eclipsed by culture). In contrast, the constructivist narratives were characterized by influence (non-determinism); dynamism (culture was dynamic and evolutionary); and relationship-building. The unintended negative consequences of essentialist notions of culture were revealed in the nursing students’ narratives. Pedagogy is implicated in nursing students’ essentialized understanding of culture.
Sherpa Romeo yellow journal. Permission to deposit published version.
Essentialist , Culture , Nursing students , Pedagogy
Gregory, D., Harrowing, J., Lee, B., Doolittle, L., & O'Sullivan, P. S. (2010). Pedagogy as influencing nursing students’ essentialized understanding of culture. International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship 7(1), Article 30. doi: 10.2202/1548-923X.2025