Cultural Mythology and Global Leadership
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Cultural Mythology and Global Leadership

Edited by Eric H. Kessler and Diana J. Wong-MingJi

This ground-breaking book explains how deep-seated cultural mythologies shape contemporary global leaders and provides insights into navigating the dynamics and complexities in today’s era of globalization. The authors use myths to uncover core characteristics and values from 20 different cultural contexts spanning all major regions of the world – the Americas, Europe, Africa and the Middle East, and Asia and the Pacific Rim – that have evolved over generations and continue to shape global leadership models. Commentaries are included from practicing managers and leaders to provide real world insights on the implications of the ideas discussed. International managers and executives, public officials, business consultants and corporate trainers will welcome the insights on cross-cultural leadership styles. The book will also find interest from researchers and students across a broad array of professional and social science disciplines.
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Chapter 3: Cultural Mythology and Global Leadership in the Caribbean Islands

Betty Jane Punnett and Dion Greenidge


Betty Jane Punnett and Dion Greenidge INTRODUCTION This chapter examines mythology and leadership in the islands of the Caribbean. The focus is largely on the Commonwealth Caribbean; that is, the former British colonies, where English is the usual language. Although the focus is on the English-speaking islands, much of the discussion is relevant to the French, Dutch and Spanish islands as well, as all the islands share a similar history. In order to understand the Caribbean today, and to understand its mythology and leadership, one needs to reflect on the history of the Caribbean. This chapter begins with a brief historical overview of the Caribbean. Then, the chapter looks at two aspects of mythology in the region – first, the mix of African magical beliefs with traditional Christian beliefs, and second the African Ananci stories that have metamorphosed into a Caribbean tradition. Later sections of the chapter consider what we know about management and leadership in the Caribbean, and how management and leadership in the Caribbean relate to the history and mythology, as well as how this information can provide practical insights for managers, especially in today’s global business environment. The Caribbean is a region of variety and contrast, and there is substantial variation across the countries of the region. Many people would argue, on the basis of casual observations, that patterns of behavior differ from one island to another, and that cultures differ. At the same time, the islands share many of the factors that are believed to shape cultures...

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