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Intercultural Communication Chapter 2 Culture and Intercultural Communication www.newmaneducation.com1.

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1 Intercultural Communication Chapter 2 Culture and Intercultural Communication

2 What is Culture? A learned set of shared interpretations about beliefs, values, norms, and social practices, which affect the behaviors of a relatively large group of people.

3 What is Culture? Learned through: – Interactions with parents, guardians, siblings, friends, etc. – Expectations received from the natural human events around us. Also provide the filters that help make sense of messages.

4 What is Culture? Set of shared interpretations that exist in the minds of people. When these symbolic ideas are shared with others, they form the basis of culture. A culture can form only if symbolic ideas are shared with a relatively large group of people.

5 What is Culture? Culture involves the sharing of beliefs, values, norms, and social practices. – Beliefs what the world is like or what is T/F. – Values what is good and bad or important. – Norms what is appropriate and expected. – Social practices are the predictable behaviors. Taken together, they form a “way of life.”

6 What is Culture? Culture affects behaviors. – Shared interpretations affect large groups. – Provide guidelines for meaning, importance, and what should or should not be done. – Provides predictability in human interactions. But, not a complete explanation for all behaviors.

7 What is Culture? Culture involves large groups of people. – Small groups of people are not a “culture.” – The term culture describes large, societal levels of organization. – Similar to ethnicity, but not the same.

8 What culture is not Nation – A political term – Culture and nation are not equivalent terms. – Nations regulate the political behaviors. – Cultures exist within the boundaries of a nation-state and influence the regulations that a nation develops. – Many unique cultures can exist within the political boundaries nations.

9 What culture is not Race – Incorrectly used to refer to a genetic or biologically-based differences. – Race is a political, legal, and social distinction. – More encompassing than culture or nation. – Can create visible and important distinctions and sometimes plays a part in establishing separate groups. – Often forms the basis for prejudice.

10 What culture is not Ethnicity – Refers to a wide variety of groups that share a common language, religious traditions, nation-state, cultural system, and historical origins. – People may share ethnic beliefs but may be members of different cultures.

11 What culture is not. Subculture and coculture – Subculture exist in the midst of larger cultures. – Coculture used to hide the implication of a hierarchical relationship. – Both subculture and coculture are redundant and imprecise terms. – Reference cultural groups in their own right.

12 Why Cultures Differ There are six forces that help generate cultural differences. – Unique history – Ecology – Technology – Biology – Institutional networks – Interpersonal communication patterns

13 Why Cultures Differ Unique history – Descriptions of historical events transmitted across generations form the shared knowledge that guides a culture’s collective action. – You have to know what people have gone through to understand what they want and don’t want.

14 Why Cultures Differ Ecology – Conditions affect formation and functioning. – Often hidden because the climate and environment are pervasive and constant. – Availability of water and land contour. – Largely overlooked in the study of cultural differences.

15 Why Cultures Differ Technology – Changes in available technology can radically alter a culture’s survival. – Media effects communicate across time and distance. – Minimizes geographic distances – Also influences how people perceive other cultures.

16 Why Cultures Differ Biology – More variation within races than between races. – Based primarily political and social roles. – Distinctions often include or exclude others. – Cannot explain differences among cultures. – Most differences result from cultural learning or environmental causes.

17 Why Cultures Differ Biology – Race is an imperfect term for categorizing human populations. – Visible cultural differences can be affected by climate and other external constraints. – Most humans have the same genetic origin. – The United Nations and scholars generally agree that there is no scientific basis for race.

18 Why Cultures Differ Biology – Race should be understood as a social, political, and personal term that is used to refer to those who are believed by themselves or by others to constitute a group of people who share common physical attributes. – Again, race can form the basis for prejudicial communication that can be a major obstacle to intercultural communication.

19 Why Cultures Differ Institutional networks – Include government, educational systems, religious organizations, etc. – New media allows easier creation of institutional networks. – Religion binds people and helps maintain cultural bonds. In Christianity and Judaism people belong to a particular church or synagogue. Hindus visit any temple throughout India.

20 Why Cultures Differ Interpersonal communication patterns – Verbal communication systems. – Nonverbal communication systems. – Intercultural communication from one generation to another. – Cultures assign and organize importance to their interpersonal communication patterns.

21 Why Cultures Differ Interrelatedness of cultural forces – Each cultural force works in conjunction with and is influenced by the others. – Adaptations and accommodations are rarely made consciously. – Cultures adjust to the world by altering cultural assumptions. – Changes to institutions or traditions cause members to alter behaviors which can result in changes to institutions or traditions.

22 Intercultural Communication

23 Related terms – Intracultural communication – Interethnic or Interracial communication – Cross-cultural communication – International communication

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