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COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE

PowerPoint Summary of:


Cross-Cultural Communication

Slide 2:
Communication and Culture

Communication is cultural

• It draws on speech patterns,


language, and nonverbal messages

• It is interactive

• It operates through social


relationships
PowerPoint Summary of:
Cross-Cultural Communication

Slide 3:
Communication and Culture

Cultural Fluency

• Essential for effective cross-cultural


communication

• Consists of
• Understanding your own cultural
lenses
• Understanding communication
variation across cultures
• Applying these understandings to
enhance relationships
PowerPoint Summary of:
Cross-Cultural Communication

Slide 4:
Common Cultural Differences

Perception of Time

Perception of Space

Fate and Personal Responsibility

Importance of Face

Nonverbal Communication
PowerPoint Summary of:
Cross-Cultural Communication
Slide 6:
Fate and Personal Responsibility

Extent to which we feel ourselves


to be the masters of our lives

Extent to which we see ourselves


as subject to things outside our
control
PowerPoint Summary of:
Cross-Cultural Communication
Slide 7:
Face and Face-Saving

Face is the standing a person has in


the eyes of others

The importance of “face” and


face-saving varies across cultures

• Some cultures value “face” more


than their own well-being

• Other cultures do not care about


face all that much
PowerPoint Summary of:
Cross-Cultural Communication

Slide 8:
Nonverbal Communication

Different cultures use different


systems of understanding
nonverbal cues

• Low-context cultures -- place


relatively less emphasis on
nonverbal cues

• High-context cultures -- place


relatively more emphasis on
nonverbal cues
Attitudes & Behaviour
“Cultural Awareness”

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Urbanization Nationalism Colonisation
Education

Migration
Industrialization
Personal
Minority
Culture Social
Experience
background
Values
World-views
Cross-
Beliefs Ethnic
cultural
background
Adjustments Behaviours
Profession
Religion
Gender Language

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Eating habits

 Asia- chop sticks


 Europe - knife and fork
 Clean right hand in some
countries
 Common plate

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Eating habits

 Beef
 Pork
 Horse
 “Everything that moves”

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Religion

 Religion – an important place in


many societies
 Knowledge of religion of host
nation very important
 Respect religious beliefs

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Family and Gender

 Elders are highly respected in


some cultures
 Understand family ties
 Different gender beliefs and
views

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Communication

 Language is culture specific


 Avoid use of idiomatic
expressions
 Humour

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Body Language

 Gesture/body language have different


meanings
 Smile will never be misunderstood
 Polite handshake is accepted in most
cultures

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Dress Code

 Depends on culture, customs,


traditions and climate
 Adapt to local customs

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Traffic

 Peacekeeper die in traffic


accidents
 Different traffic conditions
 Respect local traffic laws
 Adapt to local conditions

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


Time

 People have different concept of


time
 Need to understand
 “You have the clock, we have
the time”

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


 Understand your own culture
 Understand and accept logic of
other cultural frameworks
 Cultural differences as unique
and creative problem-solving
opportunity

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


 Knowledge of history, culture,
customs and traditions
 Background for the conflict
 Expectations from “Blue Berets”

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


 Unfamiliar:
◦ Language
◦ Climate
◦ Currency
◦ Road signs
◦ Colleagues
 Adaptation process

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03


 Cultural awareness is increased by giving
you the most common examples
 This is the first step to handle cultural
differences positively, avoid conflicts due
to misperception and to make you interact
positively with host cultures

TES / Mil Div / DPKO SGTM 1.1@30JUNE03