Intercultural Communication

Course Website for Tunghai FLLD Seminar

Archive for September, 2006

What I want you to think about for next week

Posted by thuicc on September 29, 2006

Yesterday we ended up the class by identifying some of the cocultures we find in Taiwan and some of the stereotypes the dominant culture has about these cocultures. For next week, I’d like you to think about how the cultures/cocultures you belong to affect your communication with people from other cocultures.

For instance, I mentioned that you’re all English majors in Taiwan, and you’ve been trained to write and speak in particular styles of academic English. Can you think of any examples of how your membership in this coculture might have affected your communication style and your communication with people who are not English majors? (You’re welcome to respond on this blog, also.)

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Posted in assignments, cultural patterns, identity | 4 Comments »

Lots of tidbits of advice on doing business in other cultures

Posted by thuicc on September 26, 2006

Here is some advice from various folks on “How not to be the ‘ugly American'” (or ugly anyone else, perhaps?) when doing business in other cultures. (It’ll open in another window.)

These bits of advice can be helpful, but as one commenter, Miguel, writes, “One must be careful with these tidbits as they can easily transmogrify, as Calvin would say, into STEREOTYPES. Respect is #1. After that, one simply must be observant and careful until one feels more at ease with their knowledge of local customs.”

Posted in business, stereotyping, websites | 3 Comments »

Other reflections on today’s class activity?

Posted by thuicc on September 22, 2006

Below you can post any thoughts you have about today’s ‘mock’ intercultural activity.

One thing I thought of was in reaction to what Teresa and Rachel were saying about their experience trying to end the conversation. As you know from Speaking Naturally (actually, did you use that textbook in Freshman English?), preclosings are an important part of a conversation. They signal that the conversation is going to end. The “I’ll buy you lunch” series of exchanges is a kind of preclosing/closing. But Rachel didn’t know how to respond properly to that, so it made the conversation go on, rather awkwardly, it sounds.

This reminds me of something similar that happened to me a few years ago. My wife asked me to call some of her students (junior high-age kids) to give them a little practice talking to a “foreigner” on the phone. Most of the kids tried to get off the phone as quickly as possible, but one talked to me for a long time (about 20 minutes). When I wanted to get off the phone, I said to her, “Well, it’s been nice talking to you” as a preclosing. But she took it as a statement evaluating her conversation performance and responded, “Really? I was worried that my English wouldn’t be good enough….” So I had to respond by saying that her English was actually pretty good, and then she responded to that, and… Anyway, the point is that although her ability to talk in English was fine, she missed the “cultural cue” of a particular kind of preclosing.

Any other thoughts or observations about today’s activity?

Posted in course admin, cultural patterns | 4 Comments »

Penn State students’ introductions

Posted by thuicc on September 21, 2006

To Dr. You’s students,

Please introduce yourselves in the comments section below.  I believe your professor will provide you with instructions about what to include. Nice to meet you!

To THU’s ICC students: enjoy reading!

Posted in course admin, greetings, United States | 11 Comments »

Tunghai ICC students’ introductions

Posted by thuicc on September 21, 2006

To the Tunghai ICC students: Below in the comments section, you should write a brief introduction of yourself and your interest(s) in intercultural communication. Be specific about your areas of interest (for example, international advertising) and your reasons for those interests (for example, you will be involved in international business, you plan to go abroad to study, you plan to become an English teacher, etc.). This introduction should help us in grouping students together from Tunghai and Penn State for later discussions and/or projects.

Remember, don’t write your e-mail address or IM information, etc., in your post–unless you want millions of people to start e-mailing and spamming you. (OK, maybe just thousands… 😉 )

To the Penn State students: Well, enjoy reading the introductions. Soon I’ll post a call for you to introduce yourself to the THU students.

Posted in course admin, greetings, Taiwan | 14 Comments »