Responding to Triggers in Intercultural Conflict Assignment

Responding to Triggers in Intercultural Conflict Assignment

Responding to Triggers in Intercultural Conflict Assignment

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Part 1: Go to the implicit biases link in the Additional Materials for this module. Take the test on “How We Think About Race.” Follow the step-by-step instructions on the website. Once you take the test, write a summary describing your results. If you are not comfortable writing about your results, in a 300-word reflection essay, discuss your experience. Answer the following questions:

Did you know that you had biases prior to testing?

Did the testing make you uncomfortable?

Have you experienced or committed microaggressions?

Part 2: Essay – Before writing an 1800 word essay, read the additional resources for Module 5 and view the videos, then address the following prompts:

Discuss what white fragility and white supremacy are, how the two differ, and how they both relate to racial trauma.

How can implicit bias and microaggressions cause emotional trauma to people from marginalized groups?

Identify some groups of people who have suffered multigenerational historical trauma and discuss why you think it is important to gain understanding.

Discuss how incivility or bullying can disrupt the milieu of the workplace and trigger trauma. How does this impact the workforce?

What are 1 to 3 triggering events for you? How will you respond to the triggers? How can you eliminate them?

Combine Part 1 and Part 2 into one 1800-word APA-type essay.

Assignment Expectations

Length: 1800 words

Structure: Include a title page and reference page in APA style. These do not count towards the minimal word amount for this assignment.

References: Use the appropriate APA style in-text citations and references for all resources utilized to answer the questions. Include at least three (3) scholarly sources to support your claims.

Format: Save your assignment as a Microsoft Word document (.doc or .docx).

A Sample Of This Assignment Written By One Of Our Top-rated Writers

Responding to Triggers in Intercultural Conflict

Intercultural conflicts are common issues in culturally-diverse contexts due to the prevailing differences in cultural beliefs, practices, norms, and perspectives. According to Ramayan et al. (2020), intercultural conflict is “a perceived or real incompatibility of goals, values, expectations, processes, or outcomes between two or more interdependent individuals or groups” (p. 201). These conflicts exacerbate other issues, including structural discrimination, implicit biases, microaggressions, bullying, and workplace incivility. As a result, building cultural competence can enable victims of intercultural conflicts to increase cultural awareness, understand perceptions and values, and address the triggers of conflicts. This paper elaborates on the results of the test “How we think About Race.” It explains various elements of intercultural conflicts, including white fragility and supremacy, implicit bias and microaggressions, multigenerational historical trauma, incivility and bullying, and trigger events.

Part 1: “How We Think About Race” Test

Did you know that you had biases before the testing?

Biases are often unconscious attitudes, reactions, beliefs, and stereotypes that affect behaviors and understanding (Richard & Wohlauer, 2021). Based on this fact, perceiving biases as natural and unintentional is valid. The “How we think About Race” test revealed various aspects of the personal understanding and awareness of own cultural predispositions and other people’s cultures. As a white, I have interacted and developed meaningful relationships with people of other cultures, including African Americans, Asian Americans, and Latinos. Although accommodating other people’s cultural perspectives has been the primary ingredient of socialization and social cohesion, I have encountered unintentional manifestations of biases through subtle language and misconceptions based on my lived experiences. These biases are exclusive to races and other dimensions of diversity, including sexual orientation (homophobia) and religious intolerance. In many instances, I have apologized for expressing unconscious attitudes and stereotypes toward people of different sexual orientations. However, I have learned the art of cultural tolerance, intelligence, and competence, allowing me to thrive in culturally diverse contexts.

Did the test make you unconformable?

The test did not make me uncomfortable since I was eager to conduct a personal inventory and cognitive appraisal regarding my understanding of my own’s cultural background and other people’s cultures. The findings from the test confirmed my perspective of intercultural integration, diversity accommodation, and cultural awareness. Further, the test allowed me to explore and unearth implicit biases, stereotypes, and perceptions that may contribute to intercultural conflicts.

Have you experienced or committed microaggressions?

Like implicit biases, microaggressions are unconscious and often inadvertent. According to Harrison & Tanner (2018), microaggressions are brief and subtle exchanges that disparage other people based on their characteristics, including perceived group membership. For example, people can make subtle statements about people of different sexual orientations, ages, gender, ethnicity, race, and religious standpoints. In many instances, I have experienced different microaggressions, including microassaults, microinsults, and microinvalidations. For example, I heard one person saying, “it is ridiculous that you all believe in God; you cannot make real scientists if you believe in God.” Such a statement is a microinsult to people who believe in God. In a separate instance, I heard an educator say, “you should do a medical course in Mexico because I do not think people like you can succeed here.” This sentiment targeted Hispanic learners and aimed at discouraging them based on race. Such microaggressions affect victims and can exacerbate intercultural conflicts if recipients fail to manage their negative emotions effectively.

Part 2: Responding to Triggers in Intercultural Conflict

White Fragility and White Supremacy

White people experience discomfort and guilt when other people discuss racial injustice, oppression, inequality, and discrimination. Caporuscio (2020) presents white fragility as the “feelings of discomfort a white person experiences when they witness discussion around racial inequality and injustice.” Consequently, they may develop defensive mechanisms, prompting others to comfort them. Examples of feelings and emotions associated with white fragility are anger, guilt, silence, silence, and leaving the stress-inducing situation (Caporuscio, 2020). White fragility differs from white supremacy.

Amidst the discussion about racism, discrimination, injustice, and oppression in a white-dominated environment, white supremacy is the belief that white people are superior to people of different cultures (Caporuscio, 2020). According to Torino (2020), white supremacy extends to the perceived domination in political, economic, and social systems. It is essential to note that white fragility and white supremacy can perpetuate racism and result in racial trauma. For instance, white people are susceptible to racial stress due to the underlying implicit and explicit biases that they are racist, when people of color discuss their racial experiences and perspectives, and when people of other races do not protect a white person’s feelings regarding racism.

How can implicit bias and microaggressions cause emotional trauma to people from marginalized groups?

Implicit bias and microaggressions contribute to conscious and unconscious behaviors, beliefs, stereotypes, and uninformed perceptions toward people of different cultures. Consequently, they contribute to structural discrimination and racism toward marginalized groups. Williams (2019) defines racism as “beliefs, attitudes, policies, and acts that denigrate or disadvantage individuals or groups because of presumed racial or ethnic-group affiliation” (p. 3). Microaggressions occur in daily interactions in three categories: microassaults, microinsults, and microinvalidations (Harrison & Tanner, 2018). Microassaults are conscious, deliberate biases and explicit beliefs or behaviors channeled to marginalized people through verbal and environmental cues and behaviors.

On the other hand, microinsults are primarily unconscious statements or verbalizations that vast a negative perspective regarding marginalized people based on their characteristics or group attributes (Harrison & Tanner, 2018). Finally, microinvalidations entail verbalized or communicated cues that seek to nullify marginalized groups’ thoughts, feelings, and experiential realities. The tendency to exclude, downplay, and invalidate other people’s experiences, feelings and thoughts renders them less relevant and can facilitate the inferiority complex. While responding to implicit biases and the three forms of microaggressions, people from the target groups express negative emotions and feelings of anger, frustration, fear, and retaliation.

Besides exacerbating negative feelings, implicit biases and microaggressions can result in emotional trauma by contributing to racism, incivility, and discrimination and exposing marginalized groups to unethical behaviors and acts, including bullying, physical assault, sexual harassment, and mistreatment. Woody et al. (2022) contend that racism affects multiple aspects of daily living, including employment, academics, politics, and social contexts. As a result, it contributes to various mental health issues, such as distress, anxiety, hypervigilance, anger, reduced self-esteem, and intrusive thoughts. Similarly, perversive discrimination and racism result in suicidal thoughts, stress, trauma, and depression. These ramifications contribute to premature deaths, self-harm, and a high prevalence of drugs and substance abuse among marginalized groups.

Groups of people who have suffered multigenerational historical trauma

African Americans, Latinos, Asian Americans, and Native Americans are disproportionately affected by discrimination and racism that emanate from multigenerational historical events, including slavery, oppression, and dominance by white Americans. According to Torino (2020), the historical trauma facing these marginalized groups plays a significant role in shaping intergroup relations and contributing to social disadvantages, including economic, social, and health disparities. Amidst a history of traumatic experiences and the subsequent reinforcement of racism and discrimination in contemporary societal ideologies, white Americans can express bias and microaggressions without adequate knowledge and awareness of their potential consequences (Torino, 2020). Eventually, target groups bear the burden of dealing with the adverse consequences of racism and discrimination, including emotional trauma, stress, depression, suicidal thoughts, suicides, and limited access to social, economic, political, and health opportunities. Similarly, discrimination and marginalization of minority groups contribute to disparate treatment in social institutions, including learning institutions. These issues contribute to social injustice, violation of human rights, and limitations in access to all aspects of quality life.

Cultural intelligence is profound when interacting with people from minority groups. Understanding their cultural orientations, beliefs, practices, and perspectives can enable white people to thrive in culturally-diverse contexts. According to Alifuddin & Widodo (2022), cultural intelligence allows individuals to recognize, understand, and adapt to cross-cultural contexts and change their perspectives regarding people of different cultures. Also, this aspect enables people to confront problems arising from interactions with people of different cultures. By underlying the cultural backgrounds and history of trauma among marginalized groups, it is possible to eliminate implicit biases and alleviate microaggressions that perpetuate discrimination and racism.

How incivility or bullying disrupts the milieu of the workplace and triggers trauma. How does this impact the workforce?

Bullying and incivility predict an unhealthy workplace environment since they affect employee performance, teamwork, and collaboration. Wu et al. (2020) contend that workplace bullying manifests through intentionally humiliating or belittling others, direct physical attacks, verbal criticism, insults, and workplace violence. Similarly, workplace incivility encompasses “low-intensity behavior with ambiguous intent to harm the target, which violates workplace norms for mutual respect; rude, showing a lack of respect towards others” (Tricahyadinata et al., 2020, p. 3). Based on the definition of workplace incivility, it is valid to categorize anger, humiliation, disrespect, bullying, and physical violence as uncivil behaviors and acts that compromise ethics and morality.

Bullying and workplace incivility disrupt employee performance and trigger trauma by contributing to multiple adverse effects. According to Bambi et al. (2018), uncivil behaviors and acts like bullying, violence, and humiliation lead to physical, psychological, and behavioral issues, including insomnia, fatigue, injuries, anxiety and panic attack, depression, guilt, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Also, victims of workplace bullying and other uncivil behavior and acts are susceptible to irritability, aggressiveness, concentration issues, drug and substance abuse, isolation, suicidal thoughts and suicide (Bambi et al., 2018). These ramifications contribute to low productivity, a lack of workplace cohesion, and intentions to resign from professional duties.

What are 1 to 3 triggering events for you? How will you respond to the triggers? How can you eliminate them?

Triggers are cues that facilitate or rekindle negative emotions and memories of traumatic events or experiences. Although I have never suffered racial discrimination or racism, I have encountered incidences where people from marginalized groups faced disparate treatment by security agents and organizational leadership. As a result, many daily encounters can trigger memories of these past incidences. Examples of triggers include reading or encountering graphic images that depict violence against ethnic minorities, subtle comments or comments that target people of specific dimensions of diversity, including age, gender, and sexuality, and when people inquire about the ethnic origin of my friends of different cultures. These triggers remind me of the deeply-embedded racism and discrimination that significantly affect people’s perceptions and thinking.

Based on my lived experiences, I have developed a strategy for eliminating these triggers. This strategy entails building racial stamina, which allows me to interact with others while eliminating the feelings associated with white fragility. According to Caporuscio (2020), racial stamina enables people to manage racial stressors rather than ignore them, as well as to break the patterns of fragile behaviors and actions associated with discrimination and racism. By developing racial stamina, I am aware of other people’s cultures. I can openly engage in conversations regarding other people’s history of emotional trauma, oppression, and marginalization as they live in a white-dominated environment.


Intercultural conflicts are common phenomena in culturally-diverse contexts due to incompatible cultural beliefs, goals, and objectives. Marginalized groups, such as African Americans, Latinos, Asian Americans, and Native Americans, are susceptible to intercultural conflicts that manifest as racism, workplace bullying, incivility, and violence. White Americans should demonstrate cultural intelligence and develop racial stamina to confront factors that facilitate racism, including white fragility and white supremacy. Also, cultural intelligence is ideal for preventing workplace bullying, implicit biases, and microaggressions that can result in emotional trauma among victims. Finally, racial stamina is crucial in confronting racial stressors and enabling people to understand and accommodate other people’s lived experiences.















Alifuddin, Moh., & Widodo, W. (2022). How is cultural intelligence related to human behavior? Journal of Intelligence, 10(1), 1–18.

Bambi, S., Foà, C., De Felippis, C., Lucchini, A., Guazzini, A., & Rasero, L. (2018). Workplace incivility, lateral violence, and bullying among nurses. A review of their prevalence and related factors. Acta bio-medica: Atenei Parmensis, 89(6-S), 51–79.

Caporuscio, J. (2020, June 12). What is white fragility, and why is it a problem?

Harrison, C., & Tanner, K. D. (2018). Language matters: Considering microaggressions in science. CBE—Life Sciences Education, 17(1), fe4.

Ramayan, S. K., Abu Bakar, I. A., Kutty, V. S. S., & Rosa, K. K. (2020). Causes of intercultural conflict and its management styles among students in Sunway University. Idealogy Journal, 5(2), 199–214.

Richards, R. D., & Wohlauer, M. V. (2021). Coming face to face with implicit bias, microaggressions, and macroaggressions: Understanding the influence of structural racism and misogyny on physician wellness. Journal of Vascular Surgery, 74(2), 101S110S.

Torino, G. C. (2019). Microaggression theory Influence and implications. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Tricahyadinata, I., Hendryadi, Suryani, Zainurossalamia ZA, S., & Riadi, S. S. (2020). Workplace incivility, work engagement, and turnover intentions: Multi-group analysis. Cogent Psychology, 7(1), 1–16.

Williams, M. T. (2019). Microaggressions: Clarification, evidence, and impact. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 15(1), 3–26.

Woody, M. L., Bell, E. C., Cruz, N. A., Wears, A., Anderson, R. E., & Price, R. B. (2022). Racial stress and trauma and the development of adolescent depression: A review of the role of vigilance evoked by racism-related threat. Chronic Stress, 6, 247054702211185.

Wu, M., He, Q., Imran, M., & Fu, J. (2020). Workplace bullying, anxiety, and job performance: Choosing between “passive resistance” or “swallowing the Insult”? Frontiers in Psychology, 10.

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