The way a person communicates can say a lot about that person. The way the waitress at Brady's Bar can tell quite a bit about people by the way they communicate. The way the person orders a drink or what kind of drink they order can say many different things about this person. Whether or not they are legal drinking age or if they are a regular customer. Another way a person communicates is by their body language or actions. A lot of miscommunication can come from trying to interpret other peoples behavior. The article in the Minneapolis Tribune described a scene where a group of Spanish speaking people attacked police officers as they were attempting to resuscitate a heart attack victim. Their interpretation of the scene was that the police officers were assaulting the victim instead of trying to save her.
What we learn growing up in our culture is very different from other cultures. The Miztec ate beehive larvae as a treat, which John thought was disgusting and John served them onion soup which they also thought was disgusting. The Miztec communicated the way they felt about the soup by dumping the soup out on the dirt floor. One of the Miztec men finally said "onions have a terrible odour and, if you eat too much of them it makes you stupid!"
Communication is a big part of cultures and should be taken into consideration when evaluating situations. When someone is in another culture they could be misinterpreted by the way they communicate in their language or body signals. By learning how to communicate in one's culture you're more apt to be accepted in that culture.
Monaghan, John, and Peter Just. "Social and Cultural Anthropology. "Bee Larvae and Onion Soup: Culture.... [continues]
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