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Barriers In Intercultural Communication Essay

1806 words - 8 pages

Họ tên thành viên nhóm:
1. Huyền Tôn Nữ Hạnh Phước
2. Trần Tiến Đức
3. Trương Thị Ngọc Minh
4. Trần Thị Ngọc Diệp
Barriers in interculural communication.
“The thing I like most about Brooklyn is all the different people who live there. The thing I like least about Brooklyn is that those people do not get along with each other.”
Elderly African-American.
Brooklyn resident.
( Pearson, Nelson, Titsworth & Harter, 2006, p. 208)

Nowadays, with the rapid development of technology and the tendency of globalization, the meeting of ...view middle of the document...

It means people use the norms and standards of their own culture to judge and evaluate other cultures. However, they can not answer the question from where they get a right to set their particular culture as an international system for the rest of the world to rely on. Haviland (1991) points out that ethnocentrism is “the belief that one’s own culture is superior to all others” (p.161).Without a logical explanation, people just do the action of admittance that their culture is the best. One research of Pew Global Attitudes Project has revealed that up to 71% of Americans at the age between 50 and 64 agree with the statement: “ our people are not perfect, but our culture is superior.” Even though the younger generation is less ethnocentric, the number is still very high. People of the age group from 30 to 49 has a considerable percentage of 56%, and those of 18- 29 gaining 49%.
Such enthnocentric idea can be injurious to the effective intercultural communication. Because it makes people’attitudes manifest a feeling of contempt for members of other groups. Even when they try to be open-mined and tolerant of cultural differences, they still view others from their own cultural perspective. People often forget one thing that in culture, it should stop at the point of observation, not evaluation. It is impossible to say whose culture is the best.

Another major problem is stereotype. According to the definition by Augoustinos and Walker (1998), it is a fixed, commonly held notion or image of a person or group, based on an oversimplification of some observed or imagined trait of behaviour or appearance. In other words, stereotype is a belief that every member of a particular culture or co-culture are similar to each other, and all of them have the typical characteristics of that culture or co-culture. It is like an image of printing machine producing thousands of copies, and all are exactly the same. For instance, Asian Americans are generally supposed to be brilliant at maths. A person having stereotypical thinking will believe that all of them can easily get high marks. However, in reality, there are still many Asian students having B’s in maths even when they try hard.
In cross-cultural communication, stereotype is a big barrier because it is one main cause leading to false assumption of foreigners. A clear example is the distorted image of Islamists in the mind of Americans after the event September 11th, 2001. Through mass media, many people in U.S make a simple gerneralization of Islamists as terrorists or religious extremists (Abdulla, 2007). Such a negative stereotype can make communication between an American and an Islamist much more difficult and challenging, even worse it can stir up racial hatred and hostility towards the other.
However, stereotype does not always have bad side. A reasonable generalization will help us a lot to communicate well in an another cuture. It directs us how people in that culture...

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