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Cultural contracts are essentially the socially binding agreements people sign when they subconsciously or tacitly consent to accept and abide by the cultural values, norms, beliefs, and communication patterns of a given culture as a template for how to behave. Everyone has cultural contracts that reflect their worldviews, and these are constantly in negotiation when people come in contact with cultural others. In fact, the principal goal of a cultural contract is to relationally coordinate with others.

Exploring cultural contracts theory, this entry reviews the background of the theory, the three basic premises of cultural contracts, and the three significant types of contracts, and it briefly examines the role of cultural contracts as they relate to marginal identities.

Background

Emerging from the general academic discussion of cultural competence ...

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