The Culture Code and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

The Culture Code: An Ingenious Way to Understand Why People Around the World Live and Buy as They Do
 
 


or
Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Start reading The Culture Code on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

The Culture Code: An Ingenious Way to Understand Why People Around the World Live and Buy as They Do [Paperback]

Clotaire Rapaille
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (116 customer reviews)

List Price: $15.99
Price: $11.57 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
You Save: $4.42 (28%)
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Want it tomorrow, Aug. 21? Choose One-Day Shipping at checkout. Details

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $10.99  
Hardcover --  
Paperback $11.57  
Audio, CD, Audiobook, Unabridged $26.98  
Audible Audio Edition, Unabridged $17.95 or Free with Audible 30-day free trial

Book Description

July 17, 2007
Why are people around the world so very different? What makes us live, buy, even love as we do? The answers are in the codes.

In The Culture Code, internationally revered cultural anthropologist and marketing expert Clotaire Rapaille reveals for the first time the techniques he has used to improve profitability and practices for dozens of Fortune 100 companies. His groundbreaking revelations shed light not just on business but on the way every human being acts and lives around the world.

Rapaille’s breakthrough notion is that we acquire a silent system of codes as we grow up within our culture. These codes—the Culture Code—are what make us American, or German, or French, and they invisibly shape how we behave in our personal lives, even when we are completely unaware of our motives. What’s more, we can learn to crack the codes that guide our actions and achieve new understanding of why we do the things we do.

Rapaille has used the Culture Code to help Chrysler build the PT Cruiser—the most successful American car launch in recent memory. He has used it to help Procter & Gamble design its advertising campaign for Folger’s coffee – one of the longest lasting and most successful campaigns in the annals of advertising. He has used it to help companies as diverse as GE, AT&T, Boeing, Honda, Kellogg, and L’Oréal improve their bottom line at home and overseas. And now, in The Culture Code, he uses it to reveal why Americans act distinctly like Americans, and what makes us different from the world around us.

In The Culture Code, Dr. Rapaille decodes two dozen of our most fundamental archetypes—ranging from sex to money to health to America itself—to give us “a new set of glasses” with which to view our actions and motivations. Why are we so often disillusioned by love? Why is fat a solution rather than a problem? Why do we reject the notion of perfection? Why is fast food in our lives to stay? The answers are in the Codes.

Understanding the Codes gives us unprecedented freedom over our lives. It lets us do business in dramatically new ways. And it finally explains why people around the world really are different, and reveals the hidden clues to understanding us all.

Frequently Bought Together

The Culture Code: An Ingenious Way to Understand Why People Around the World Live and Buy as They Do + Care of the Soul : A Guide for Cultivating Depth and Sacredness in Everyday Life
Price for both: $24.65

Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

French-born marketing consultant and psychoanalyst Rapaille takes a truism—different cultures are, well, different—and expands it by explaining how a nation's history and cultural myths are psychological templates to which its citizens respond unconsciously. Fair enough, but after that, it's all downhill. Rapaille intends his theory of culture codes to help us understand "why people do what they do," but the "fundamental archetypes" he offers are just trumped-up stereotypes. He often supports jarring pronouncements ("The Culture Code for perfection in America is DEATH") with preposterous generalizations and overstatements, e.g., Japanese men "seem utterly incapable of courtship or wooing a woman." Writing with the naïveté of someone who has learned about the world only through Hollywood films, he seems unaware that every person living within a nation's borders doesn't necessarily share the same cultural biases and references. Rapaille's successful consulting career is evidence that he's more convincing in the boardroom than he is on the page. Amid the overheated prose and dubious factoids, it's easy to overlook the book's scattered marketing proposals and employee-management tips. (June 6)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“This book is just plain astonishing! Filled with profound insights and ideas that have enormous consequences for today’s organizations. If you want to understand customers, Constituencies, and crowds, this book is required reading.”

--Warren Bennis, Distinguished Professor of Business, University of Southern California and author of On Becoming a Leader

Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Crown Business; Reprint edition (July 17, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0767920570
  • ISBN-13: 978-0767920575
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (116 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,899 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
47 of 53 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Who is Clotaire Rapaille & why does he dress like Mozart? February 25, 2007
Format:Hardcover
Who?

The first question is easy to answer. Clotaire Rapaille is a Frenchman who claims that a candy bar shared by a GI during the Liberation was a key imprint leading him to ultimately adopt the US as home. He holds a Masters in Political Science and in Psychology and a Doctorate in Medical Anthropology from the Sorbonne. As chairman of an organization called "Archetype Discoveries Worldwide" he shows how you too can become an archetypologist and learn the process of decoding culture. While he has taught at a long list of universities, he is better known as an advertising guru to top American corporations whom he helps discover the culture code that unlocks the door to successful marketing.

Why?

So why does he dress like Mozart? Perhaps because he uses a three movement orchestration that he calls "discovery" to penetrate to the heart of the social archetypes--to arrive at the code--the very deep "why" of human behavior, the trigger to an emotional response in the primitive brain that explains why people choose to do what they do and, especially of interest to his clientele, why they buy what they buy. The archetypal resonances of Mozart's The Golden Flute and the passion arousing sounds of Timotheus' lyre are what marketers and advertisers need to be "on code" or "off code" in ways that will essentially determine their success.

When the author explains that the culture code for US eating habits is FUEL, while the French focus on pleasure, it goes a long way toward explaining why, after close to a decade in France, I am schizophrenic. Eating in a US restaurant, the check arrives the moment I have stopped. It is delivered by an attendant in that very instant when I have set down my desert or coffee spoon indicating that my "tank is full.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Understanding What Makes Us Different August 27, 2006
Format:Hardcover
This is a brilliant book! It is extremely well written, incredibly interesting and tremendously insightful. I bought it after reading a page at random and was hooked.

In "The Culture Code" Frenchman turned American, Clotaire Rapaille, an expert on culture coding and adviser to many of the world's largest and most successful companies, unlocks the secrets to understanding why people in America, Europe and Asia live and buy as they do. Everything centers around how each nation sees itself and others, especially America. These codes are important to companies trying to sell their goods and ideas abroad. But they also reveal a great deal about us.

The French code for France, for example is Idea, while the code for America is Space Travelers. The German code for Germany is Order, while that for America is John Wayne. The English code for England is Class, while that for America is Unashamedly Abundant. And the American code for America is Dream.

"Dreams have driven this culture from its earliest days," writes Dr. Rapaille, with a beauty and passion that lends much to his French roots. "The dream of explorers discovering the New World. The dream of pioneers opening the West. The dream of Founding Fathers imagining a new form of union. The dream of entrepreneurs forging the Industrial Revolution. The dream of immigrants coming to a land of hope. The dream of a new group of explorers landing safely on the moon."

Rapaille shows that, while the Europeans fail to understand Americans and many even hope we will fail in the future, they admire our country and Americans for our boundless sense of youth, energy and hope.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
30 of 35 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Started Strong but lost momentum July 24, 2007
Format:Paperback
Having marketed and sold in every region of the globe, I was naturally drawn to Clotaire Rapaille's "The Culture Code." Rapaille utlizes a one word "code word" which you could characterize an "emoticon descriptor" for a product or service, such as "HORSE" for the the Jeep Wrangler, or "DISAPPOINTMENT" for Love. He caught my interest up front with an overview of the process behind his code labeling, but as the book progressed, never provided a road map as to the analysis behind the process except the end results surrounding vanity areas of health, beauty, sex, home, money and other emotional areas. But nothing regarding hard business analysis. His premise is that we all look at the world differently due to our childhood driven, hard wired cultural experiences, causing stark differences between the emotional quotient of Europeans, Asians and Americans. At the end, the chapters were fairly repetitive recapping the first, and strongest in the book.
Was this review helpful to you?
48 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Too potent for most people to handle June 15, 2006
Format:Hardcover
Clotaire Rapaille reminds me a little of a somewhat softened, better educated and French version of the Jack Nicholson character in that pivotal moment of "A Few Good Men" where he blurts out: "You can't handle the truth!"

The author is confrontive in the extreme, but in an intellectually assertive and nonviolent way. He has truly mined some of the cloaked messages going on as endless tape loops in the unconscious minds of individuals and their national cultures - especially, but not exclusively, Americans.

I smiled knowingly when I read the Publisher's Weekly review at the top of this page. The reviewer roundly attacks the author for the statement about Japanese men and romance. I live in San Francisco and I have dated a number of Japanese women from Japan. I would have to say based on my experience that it is the PW reviewer who is looking at life through the preposterous prism of a Hollywood lens, and it is Dr. Rapaille who is right in touch with street-level reality.

The book's subtitle overpromises a little (as subtitles are wont to do) in that this book won't give you an entirely new world view from which to understand everything about everybody. It won't.

But the number of stunning insights (all of which resonated with me, as an experienced marketer) about: sex... seduction... men's view of women... money... food... alcohol... beauty... and being fat...

... will cause the thoughtful, inquiring and willing-to-learn reader to see things in a new way and understand parts of his world a lot better.

This is a great book and well worth reading if you are interested in psychology, marketing, and/or the world the way it is and the way it is likely to be for years to come.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars It's funny and informative
Very entertaining and illuminating. It's funny and informative. I recommend it for global companies and tourists alike
Published 11 days ago by Shaikha Al-Hashem
5.0 out of 5 stars I had excitedly bought the book thinking it will enable ...
I had excitedly bought the book thinking it will enable me to crack the cultural code for a product-brand I was working on. The book did more than that. Read more
Published 18 days ago by Kritika
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful and captivating
I enjoyed reading Clotaire Rapaille's experience with deep cultural knowledge. His method and stories of discovering cultural beliefs are fascinating.
Published 3 months ago by Santiago Strasser
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the most brilliant books I've read in years...
I wish he had more books! Or had expanded this one to three times the size, every paragraph had me wanting more information on other countries with further explanations. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Suzanne Deneuve Hall
5.0 out of 5 stars Why do people act against their Best Interests time after time?
For all those who have tried to help others and been frustrated by their inability to change, even when they see they're hurting themselves. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Sandra L Bailey
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Theme
This theme is what originally grabbed my attention. It is important to understand why we are drawn to certain things depending on our culture. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Channing Salava
5.0 out of 5 stars Game Changing Book…
After thinking that I know it all as a worldly American having lived the dream, this book opened my eyes to the undercurrents of why the masses of people do what they do based upon... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Brian Fradet
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
It was initially hard to take Rapaille's codes with a grain of salt. And after Rapaille mentioned helping a company make their foods more addictive, I found his siting depression... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Ryanne
5.0 out of 5 stars Discussion
Got this book for a group discussion, so haven't had that yet. Soon this will happen? Looking forward to it
Published 6 months ago by Jayne D
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best books regarding our culture
It dives into how we fall in love with products, get emotionally attached to them and why we purchase what we purchase. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Soraya Bittencourt
Search Customer Reviews
Search these reviews only


Forums

Topic From this Discussion
Academically Irresponsible and Thin on Research
100% agreed. You took the words out of my mouth. In fact, about 60 pages in, I also started skimming and looking for the bolded "Codes." I don't feel I missed anything of substances in doing so.

I don't understand why on earth people like it so much!
Sep 19, 2007 by Mark |  See all 3 posts
Have something you'd like to share about this product?
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 


Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions


Look for Similar Items by Category