Essay On Intercultural Communication

706 Words3 Pages
Everyone in the world communicates interpersonally at one point of his or her life. Some use interpersonal communication more often than others and some are able to do so more effectively than others. Culture can play a large part in interpersonal communication and occasionally needs to be taken into consideration. The act of “members of two or more cultures [exchanging] messages in a manner that is influenced by their different cultural perceptions and symbol systems” (Adler 33) is known as intercultural communication. However, I have learned that communication does not always have to be referred to as intercultural communication even between people of different cultures. When it is, there are varying degrees, or salience, of intercultural…show more content…
Although there are different degrees of how much cultural significance influences communication, often times it can create a misunderstanding in the way we perceive how another culture acts. For example, upon visiting Taiwan recently this past summer, I tried to make “small talk” with a stranger with the little knowledge of Chinese that I had. I made sure to be friendly and smile so I would come off as pleasant. All I received during that conversation were brief responses with a neutral expression on her face, almost as if she completely disregarded and had no interest in what I had to say. Immediately, I was offended and thought of her as being rude. But thinking more about it now, making “small talk” isn’t as normal in Taiwan as it is in the United States. I believe a part of this is because the Asian culture is more reserved and quiet compared to how the United States is. That is when I came to conclusion that the woman was not being rude. It just was not part of her culture to talk to a stranger as openly as I had done…show more content…
I have first handedly experienced the generalizations people make about certain cultures. Being part of an Asian culture, I was often associated with being an “academic overachiever” or a “nerd lacking social and communication skills”. But in all reality, I was often lazy to do homework and hung out with my friends quite frequently. I was often frustrated by the generalizations made of me from my culture that I realized it’s important that these generalizations do not apply to every member of a group. It may be true that our Asian culture performs better academically as a whole as compared to other cultures, but I think it is important for everyone to realize that these generalizations do not define everyone in the culture
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