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Difference Between Cultural Diffusion and Cultural Assimilation | Cultural Diffusion vs Cultural Assimilation


The key difference between cultural diffusion and cultural assimilation is that cultural diffusion is the spreading of cultural traits from one group to another whereas cultural assimilation is the process in which a minority group or culture begins to resemble those of a dominant group.

Cultural diffusion and cultural assimilation are two concepts that describe the spread of culture. However, there is a distinct difference between cultural diffusion and cultural assimilation. In cultural diffusion, two or more cultures come together, and elements of both cultures start to mix together. However, in cultural assimilation, one minority group or culture become a part of a dominant culture by adopting the practices and norms of the new culture and forgetting the original culture.

CONTENTS

1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Cultural Diffusion
3. What is Cultural Assimilation
4. Similarities Between Cultural Diffusion and Cultural Assimilation
5. Side by Side Comparison – Cultural Diffusion vs Cultural Assimilation in Tabular Form
6. Summary

What is Cultural Diffusion?

Cultural diffusion is basically the spread of culture. In other words, this phenomenon involves the spread of cultural beliefs, traits and norms of one culture to another. Cultural diffusion has the ability to broaden our horizons and make us culturally rich. In the modern world, advanced communication, transportation, and technology enhance the mixing and spreading of world cultures through different religions, ethnicities, and nationalities. Let’s look at some examples of cultural diffusion:

  • Popularity of Sushi (Japanese cuisine) all over the world
  • Celebrating both Christmas and dia de los reyes
  • Spread of Buddhism to Western countries
  • Celebrating Thanksgiving with Turkey and traditional food from one’s native country
  • McDonald’s offering Asian-inspired food such as McRice, Mc Aloo Tikki, Sichuan Double Chicken Burger, etc.

Difference Between Cultural Diffusion and Cultural Assimilation | Cultural Diffusion vs Cultural Assimilation