Aerial photograph of the Immaculate Conception Chapel


In the Cross-Cultural Cluster (CCC), participants will study and appreciate various cultures, the differences among them, and the various cultural responses to human needs. Participants also will understand the development of cultures as a process of human innovation and creation. Moreover, participants will learn methods through which cultures can best be used to make life better and, when appropriate for individual freedom and social improvement, be outmaneuvered. This is the kind of truth that can truly help one and one's people become increasingly free. You can create an increasingly positive life for yourself and your people only if you understand and deal with the limits life, and especially your culture, have been imposing upon you and everyone else from the moment of conception. Culture shapes you, biases you toward certain goals, and permits you only a limited number of means to reach those goals.

The CCC makes cultures perceptible as communities, designed by humans through time, with much to learn from each other. Participants improve their ability to function with and in other cultures, in their home communities, in their nations, and in the world at large.

The CCC will build on the Humanities Base by addressing such universal questions as how we survive and rise to higher levels of understanding and achievement, why some cultures and societies fail, how members of subcultures become dominant in some societies, and how certain cultures become dominant in the world. The difference between the CCC and other clusters is that CCC courses emphasize the ways the answers to such important questions are reached by humans working in the communities we call cultures.

Courses in the Cross-Cultural Cluster provide students with the opportunity to:

  • Probe the major philosophical and social notions of how people from different cultures interact and encounter one another;
  • Examine particular historical periods, including your own, to compare and contrast important cross-cultural interactions;
  • Understand the religious and philosophical realities of different cultures and uncover the interactions among these realities;
  • Study and explain the historical, social, educational, and psychological mechanisms which control and manipulate cross-cultural interactions;
  • Analyze and synthesize significant and memorable works of literature and art which reveal depths of understanding of cultures and their interactions;
  • Evaluate the importance of religions, gender roles, testing, poverty, discrimination, oppression and empowerment within specific cultures and in their interactions with others;
  • Investigate and understand the fundamental importance of the biological interchanges resulting from the encounter and interaction of cultures and also from the human assault on the environment.

Cluster Coordinator:

Dr. Juan Santamarina
Department of History
Humanities Building, Rm 462