New Customs And Traditions From Other Countries

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When this interview project was presented, I was very excited to learn about new customs and traditions from other countries. While looking for a person to interview, I remembered that my boyfriend had a roommate who was an international student from China. I had heard of China before and I was extremely interested in learning about their marriage traditions. I wanted to learn how their marriage traditions were similar or completely different from the traditions in the United States.
It was about two weeks ago that I went to visit them at UC Santa Barbara. The name I chose to give my interviewee was Ray. The reason for my choosing of this name was because it is the name he would like to give his son one day. Ray is 18 years old, Chinese, and was born and raised in a small city called Binzhou in China. Ray is an only child and has lived in the same small home his whole life with his father and mother. He just came to the United States this summer to start his first year at UCSB. "The United States has the best education in the world, this is why I had to leave my family. I want a better life." This is a quote I took from Ray that I really liked. It made me think about how many American students sometimes take for granted the education they receive here by not taking it seriously. Ray’s intended major is electrical engineering; he chose this major because he is very interested in learning how electronics are made. His goal is to get a job where he will be able to make and hopefully create the next best computer or smartphone. He would like to find a job back in China so that he can be close to his family, but he is also willing to stay in America if he finds a job here. Ray finds living in the United States very different, for examp...

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... marriage are similar to Americans such as each partner having sexual access to each other, rights over the child, rights of economic service to their family, and obligations to care for the child and family. Lastly once married the couple must go and live on their own. They do not have any traditions in which the bride goes to live with the husband’s family or vis a versa. This is a way for the couple to learn how to provide for themselves and their child.
My role as an ethnographic interviewer and researcher was difficult for me. This is because I am a very shy person, but I had to learn to step out of my comfort zone in order to interview a complete stranger. If I had an opportunity to redo the interview I would have practiced with someone I do know so that I would not feel as uncomfortable. Overall this project was educational and I would happily do it again.

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