Expatriate versus Repatriate

Topics: Culture Pages: 9 (2861 words) Published: December 26, 2013

Expatriates versus Repatriates
The cultural adjustment

The culture shock that expatriates and repatriates experience is different in some ways, but weigh about equally the same. First of all, the explanation of culture shock itself is a phenomenon that all expatriates experience when they travel abroad for any kind of purposes they have (Internations.org, 2013). The phenomenon in which we can also describe as when the people around you have different style of living, food, traditions, culture, views, beliefs, and environment, therefore expatriates would feel interacting with people around is not as comfortable as with the people where the expatriates from, also might feel the way of living in the new country is not as what they used to live like in their home country. Expatriate, person temporarily or permanently residing in a country and culture other than that of the person's upbringing or legal residence, have always been having trouble facing culture shock, yet will most likely adapt to the new environment, and the same goes to repatriates. Repatriates simply means expatriates who return back to their original place, and mostly repatriates will again experience another culture shock of adapting to a new environment from which they were once adapted to the environment at the place they were at before coming back to the home country.

Expatriates Culture Shock
In everywhere around the world, every expatriate will experience culture shock and will also manage to get through. There is no specific theory explaining how expatriates avoid experiencing culture and every expatriate will always experience culture shock. Expatriates are not only having a single strike of culture shock, whereas there are stages of culture shock. It takes time for expatriates to get adjusted with the cultural differences and issues stages. Different stages have some different characteristics to be precise. The stages of the cultural adjustment as listed:

1. Preliminary Stage: This stage is when expatriates are still at their home country and they are aware about leaving and will stay out of their home country for quite some time. This will lead to them in saying goodbyes, preparing for their new life. 2. Initial Euphoria: This stage is when expatriates first arrival in the new country and getting excited for curiosity of new things and places. 3. Irritability: This happens when expatriates begin to see the surroundings are different in many ways. Whereas the difference in communicating with people, food, lifestyle, way of thinking and many more. Expatriates will also feel homesick and missing all the things from their home country. The difference between home and host culture and environment will have big impact on the expatriates feeling. Then, expatriates will tend to be having hard time to settle in the host country. 4. Gradual Adjustment: When expatriates start to get used to the new environment, they will tend to forget little things that makes them miss their home country. They will start to enter this stage when they finally accepted their presence in the host country is not really giving them that many trouble and they know they can survive and adapt to the host country. 5. Adaptation and biculturalism: This stage will then take place when expatriates feel when they feel that they are able to develop their adaptation to the host country. They would even feel that they are a part of the host country and the feeling of their “foreignness” slightly start to wear off. Somehow, they will tend to get more comfortable with the host country and homesickness will start to not take place gradually. 6. Re-entry Phase: This happens when expatriates return back to their natural habitat and then considered as repatriate. (University of California Irvine, 2011)

This cultural adjustment stages is applied for expatriates anywhere around the world....

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