Intercultural Communication

Course Website for Tunghai FLLD Seminar

Questions for the Second Online Chat

Posted by thuicc on October 21, 2004

Here are the questions that you should address in the second online chat this Saturday. These are complex questions, so please stay focused on them during your chat.

Focus of first half of discussion: American culture(s) (30 min.)

  1. Some of the readings your Taiwanese counterparts have done describe Americans’ view of the self as an independent, autonomous individual. Please tell your Taiwanese counterparts about how you usually think about your ‘self’ in relation to others. How independent do you usually consider yourself in terms of the decisions you make in your everyday life? Please be as specific as possible.
  2. Where do you think your view of yourself comes from? That is, what factors have influenced your development of your self-concept?
  3. Please explain low-context culture for your counterparts and discuss with them whether or not you feel this kind of communication is appropriate for interpersonal communication. Why/why not? Please provide examples.

Focus of second half of discussion: Taiwanese culture(s) (30 min)

  1. Your counterparts in the U.S. have read about how the Chinese concept of self is highly relational–that Chinese always think about themselves and consider their actions in relation to the needs of the group. Do you believe that your identity and your decision-making is usually heavily influenced by your relationships with others? Why/why not? Please provide examples.
  2. Do you believe the traditional concept of the self in Chinese culture (as described above) has changed over the years? What kinds of influences might have changed the idea of the self in Taiwan?
  3. Please explain the concept of high-context communication to your counterparts in the U.S. In what kinds of interpersonal communication situations do you feel high-context communication is more appropriate than low-context communication? Do you use low-context communication often? In what situations?
  4. Can you give any examples of different ways you might interact with members of your in-groups and out-groups?

2 Responses to “Questions for the Second Online Chat”

  1. Felicia said

    Wow…We have to ask so many questions this week!It’s gonna be fun.
    Last week,we also asked if they have
    compartimentalixzed friendships or not, they said that they do really have different friends for different purposes. For example, they have friends to be advized, or friends to go shopping with. From my point of view, there are still similar cases in Taiwan,not only in the states.

  2. So the idea of having compartmentalized friendships isn’t an exclusively American characteristic, is it? I was wondering, Felicia–are your American partners all the same gender or is their group mixed? (I’m still trying to figure out if gender has any role in the use of ‘compartmentalizaion’ of friendships.

    As for Saturday’s discussion, try your best to get through all of the questions, but if you get “stuck” on some questions because they are particularly interesting to discuss, that’s OK.

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