Top-Rated Free Essay

Culture Shock

Topics: Culture, The Culture, Sociology / Pages: 5 (1138 words) / Published: Jun 3rd, 2013
Overcome the Culture Shock When people move from one culture to another, they usually feel lonely, vulnerable or lost, like a fish out of water. That is called “culture shock”, which was introduced for the first time in 1958 to describe the anxiety produced when a person comes to a completely new environment1. Nowadays, while immigration is becoming more popular due to the globalization, more people suffer from culture shock which results from the difference between two cultures. To combat the culture shock, a specialized institution, which offers varied courses for foreigners to adapt to new life, is needed. Lack of familiarity and understanding of the new environment caused culture shock which brings emotional discomfort and social intercourse problems. For one thing, people are excited and curious at the beginning when they come to a new environment. Nevertheless, bad feeling such as loneliness and depression will follow on, which can be regarded as “homesick”. Those who experience emotional discomfort are confused by the new manners and customs. Besides, the loss of identify also makes people feel uncertain about their own position. Second, the diversity of the new culture such as language, religion, mode of thinking, also contributes to social intercourse problems, which takes long time to adjust to. For instance, people from western country usually value their privacy more than Chinese. When westerners communicate with people in China, they are unwilling to tell the personal affairs such as their own age, weight or salary. However, such behavior is likely to bring embarrassment for each other since it is common for Chinese to talk about this. Facing various difficulties and challenge, some people will isolate themselves from the host country’s environment. Moreover, there are still some individuals who cannot accustom themselves to living in foreign countries because they are unable to get through the transition2. As a consequence, it’s appealing for solutions to solve these problems. Asking for some tips from internet or friends, consulting the International Office in certain college, going to the special institution People who go abroad usually ask for suggestions from the internet, friends or consulting institutions in order to decrease culture shock. first of them is to keep an open mind. Of course people will face a large number of problems when meeting something or someone they have never met, keeping an open mind can help one to face the difficulties more optimistically and thus can keep more peaceful and thoughtful when something bad like losing way happens. To make an effort to learn the local language is another way to accustom to the new surroundings. Language is the precondition for communicating, once one have mastered the local language, nothing will be so difficult for him or her to combat in a new country. However, if a person knows little about the local language, it will bring him a lot of troubles. For example, if one person who does not know the local language, he will feel difficult in ordering a meal because he cannot speak the local language and the waiter will not understand what he wants to order, same with buying something he likes, even going somewhere he wants go to. When coming into a new country, people will start to get acquainted with the social conduct the new environment and get to know people in new environment, in order to make them adjust to the surroundings as soon as possible. Although there are so many ways for people to adapt themselves to the new environment, there are still so many people feel confused when they come to a new country. All the solutions mentioned above take a long time, which makes it impossible for those people who just come to a new country for only few days for business or touring to adapt to the new environment soon. Since previous solutions did not work well to deal culture shock, to build a Global Cultural Communication Institution (GCCI) is becoming necessary. GCCI is an organization that will be carried out by National Ministry of Education. It is a professional organization aimed to help people who are going abroad. Unlike the other institution in specific country, which only offers the culture of some certain popular countries, GCCI will be a salad bowl that offers different course about different culture. Usually, culture shock could affect the one who move into a new environment by emotion, thinking style, social skill and social identity which is followed by the GCCI’s courses. For example, GCCI could offer the social customs which is conducive to adapt the diverse cultural values, the basic language that is useful when people need to ask for the directions in the somewhere out of their beat and also the psychology. People could choose the courses according to what they need “since individuals who have strong interpersonal skills in their home culture tending to experience less culture shock and adjusting better as expatiates than their counterparts with lower levers of interpersonal skills” 3, according to what Mendenhall and Oddou stated. The courses that GCCI provide are no whittled away to nothing, it will provide virtual occasion to educate people how to do in a specific circumstance, especially for the social customs because research has demonstrated that the knowledge and the cultural values is a problem-solving approach to decreasing culture shock4. Moreover, it will be a chain institution like the Confucius Institute around the world so that people can find the GCCI and receive the classes more convenient. Some people may criticize that it is hard to put the GCCI into practice because it needs large quantities of professors and a great deal of money to run the institution. To avoid this, the GCCI will appeal local volunteers who want to spread their culture and gain some experience, to engage in the team helping people reduce the culture shock. To draw a conclusion, to overcome culture shock is vital for the one that move into a new environment since the culture shock will bring inconvenience to their daily life. For people who are going abroad to enjoy an exotic atmosphere, GCCI is a best access to defeat the unpredictable troubles caused by culture shock. Furthermore, GCCI is a practical institute that could be found all over the world. In spite of enjoying great time in a foreign country, it is time for immigrants or foreign students to accept the classes that GCCI offered since nobody wants to make some cultural mistakes in public or in an important conference.

Source: 1. http://edweb.sdsu.edu/people/cguanipa/cultshok.htm 2. http://www.worldwide.edu/travel_planner/culture_shock.html 3. M.Mendenhall and G.oddou, The dimensions of expatriate acculturation. Academy of Management Review, 10(1985), pp.39-47. 4. M.Winkelman, Culture chock and adaptation. Journal of counseling and Development.73(1994), pp.121-126 .

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