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6/8 (Sat.) Cultural Stereotypes and Differences (Joseph)

發表於 : 週日 6月 02, 2019 3:01 pm
6/8 (Sat.) Cultural Stereotypes and Differences (Joseph)

Hello everyone, this is Joseph. It’s been a long time since we last met. With this chance as your host, I tried my best to find a fun topic for you. Wish we can all enjoy the discussion.
Some of you might know I have been working for a Belgium company for almost one year. Working in an international team gives me a lot of culture shocks, sometimes conflicts. From time to time, European colleagues surprise me with their opposite points of view. Those experiences lead me to the topic we have today.

Section I Cultural Stereotypes

• 70 People Reveal Their Country's Most Popular Stereotypes and Clichés | Condé Nast Traveler https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4MRZbWuUmkk

There are some famous stereotypes of countries:
- Britain has terrible food;
- French waiters are rude;
- All Italians are fashionable;
- Russians love vodka;
- Germans drink a lot of beers;
- Bullfighting is the Spanish national pastime;
- Smoking weeds is legal in the Netherlands;
- Kenya is all national parks;
- The Japanese use chopsticks to eat sushi;
- All white Americans are obese, lazy, and dim-witted;
- Mexicans are lazy and came into America illegally;
- All Arabs and Muslims are terrorists;
- All Asians are good at math. All Asians like to eat rice and drive slow; and
- All Americans are generally considered to be friendly, generous, and tolerant, but also arrogant, impatient, and domineering.
(Reference: https://www.msn.com/en-us/travel/articl ... Y#image=18 ;
https://examples.yourdictionary.com/ste ... mples.html)

1. Do you know these famous stereotypes about countries around the world? Would you agree with them or against them? Please share your own opinion.

2. Have you heard any stereotype about your culture? What do you think about them?

3. What is your favorite country you would like to live in in the world? What’s your impression about that country? Do you think that is a stereotype?

4. What is your less favorite country? What characteristics make you don’t like it?

Section II Cultural Differences

• 18 Cultural Differences Between the USA and EUROPE https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NutQz-MkVYQ

• Humor and culture in international business | Chris Smit | TEDxLeuven https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MB6NXzGKMKg

1. Taiwanese culture has been deeply influenced by American culture. Our impressions of Westerner are mostly shaped by Hollywood Movies. Have you noticed European culture is quite different? What is the most difference between American and European culture?

2. Taking about business, different cultures and mindsets have always been one of the most difficult part of cooperation among businessmen. Have you ever found lacking mutual understanding with your different culture business partners or foreign friends?

3. British English and American English are different in pronunciation, accent, spelling and usage. Which one you preferred and why is that?

4. It has been a long history of researches to compare eastern culture and western culture. What do you think is the most significant difference?

3:45 ~ 4:00pm Greetings & Free Talk / Ordering Beverage or Meal / Getting Newcomer’s Information
4:00 ~ 4:20pm Opening Remarks / Newcomer’s Self-introduction / Grouping
(Session I)
4:20 ~ 5:00pm Discussion Session (40 mins)
5:00 ~ 5:20pm Summarization / Regrouping (20 mins)
5:20 ~ 5:30pm Break
(Session II)
5:30 ~ 6:10pm Discussion Session (40 mins)
6:10 ~ 6:30pm Summarization / Concluding Remarks / Announcements (20 mins)
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Re: 6/8 (Sat.) Cultural Stereotypes and Differences (Joseph)

發表於 : 週五 6月 07, 2019 4:36 pm
Iris Wu
I was thinking to skip this meeting because I am still recovering from a trip, but the topic is interesting, I cannot help checking out more of the referencing materials and questions.

Nowadays, media is so accessible, you don’t have to travel around the world to feel the culture differences. Stereotyping easily leads to bias or prejudice, but it seems an inevitable part of human nature. Our brain doesn’t deal with complicate facts well, so we “simplify” them by “concluding” things into some “rules”.
For me, stereotypes more or less represent certain trends or truth of a society, but don’t go with any stereotype without deeper understanding of its positive and negative causes and results; or don’t stick in a stereotype with a close/fixed mindset. We can discuss more specific stereotypes and share some interesting experience in the meeting.

Re: 6/8 (Sat.) Cultural Stereotypes and Differences (Joseph)

發表於 : 週五 6月 07, 2019 10:26 pm
Iris Wu
And I'd like to add this: Stereotyping mostly happens when people see another group of people from a distance; once you know an individual in person, you only see human nature which is shared by all regardless of their race, nationality, and ethnical backgrounds.

Re: 6/8 (Sat.) Cultural Stereotypes and Differences (Joseph)

發表於 : 週六 6月 08, 2019 1:07 am
Hi Iris,
Thanks for your acknowledgment. I am more than glad you like the topic.The summarization you made about stereotyping/labeling is remarkable!

Actually, I did not prepare to bring us into such a philosophical discussion. Because my original intention is to provide a relaxing and leisurely meeting, which attendee can join without preparation. In fact, my first draft began with a hilarious stand-up talk show which making fun of national stereotypes. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3W5QMHU-TTM)

However, with more preparation and reference review, I decided to shape this topic to be more flexible. I wish to provide you an open discussion which can cover a large spectrum from easy chitchat to in-depth communication. All depends on your own interest and preference.

Culture differences are the outcome of different groups of people. From a distance, people create labels for each other to identify differences between them. And labels facilitate quick acquaintance but limit deeper understanding in the meantime. As you mentioned, don't stick in a stereotype with a fixed mindset so we can go on and know people by heart.

I've been always fancy culture differences. That's why I welcome exotic cultural exposure. By talking cultural cliche's, I started conversations with new coworkers and got chances to know them more when they start to explain their real lives from stereotypes. Basically, it's a good material of schmoozing, as long as you don't believe it yourself and take it too seriously.
And the most important thing, do not upset people at the very beginning by saying discriminating things!

Re: 6/8 (Sat.) Cultural Stereotypes and Differences (Joseph)

發表於 : 週六 6月 08, 2019 10:17 am
The topic reminded me of a personal experience of cultural stereotype when I pursued a master degree. I studied locally but one of my classmates was an American, who married a Taiwanese girl and stayed in Taiwan.

Back then all my perception of American cultures came from Hollywood movies. I inevitably thought that all Americans were quite liberated toward sexual relationships. He corrected and challenged my notion by saying that the lion’s share of Hong Kong movies then were filled with street gun shots. Did I see Hong Kong as such a violent city? I was struck dumb and unable to respond. That was the first time I learnt my own stereotype.

Re: 6/8 (Sat.) Cultural Stereotypes and Differences (Joseph)

發表於 : 週六 6月 08, 2019 3:52 pm
Thanks Kooper, your experience sharing is enlightening. We all be misled by stereotypes sometimes. But it is more important that we are willing to correct ourselves and have the courage to admit our ignorance.
Your act is a demonstration of wisdom!

Re: 6/8 (Sat.) Cultural Stereotypes and Differences (Joseph)

發表於 : 週六 6月 08, 2019 11:33 pm
Attendees(16): Blithe, Bret, Catherine, Christine, Gloria, Iris, John, Joseph (host), Julian, Ken, Kooper, Leon, Shirley, Steven (newcomer), Tim, Timothy