top-rated free essay

Things a Visitor to My Country Should Know to Avoid Intercultural Misunderstandings

By ophyls Nov 19, 2008 665 Words
My country is NIGERIA, which is in the African Continent. It is the most populous country in Africa and the largest country in West Africa, with its capital in a city called Abuja . Nigeria has different ethnic groups, diverse ethnic languages and is rich in cultures and traditions. Each year, so many visitors from all over the world come to Nigeria for vacation. There are so many natural landscapes and sites to visit. However, visitors to Nigeria should beware of the difference in lifestyles and cultural attributions that exist in Nigeria as to avoid any intercultural misunderstandings. One of the most important things a visitor to Nigeria should know is that there are different ethnic groups and they have their own languages. Though English is the official language, it should not be surprising to visitors that not everyone they meet can express themselves in English. Visitors should not be embarrassed when they hear people speak languages other than English. It is established that most people in my country tend to be very friendly to visitors or foreigners; they are always happy and willing to help them find their feet in a strange environment. It is important that people visiting my country should know this so they will not misinterpret the friendliness as encroaching into their personal space. In Nigeria, there are strong emphasis on traditions and customs. These traditions and customs vary according to ethnic groups. Visitors should know this and they should also know that what works in one ethnic group might not work in another. Worth noting is the fact that people in different ethnic groups expect visitors to adapt to their own way of life or their traditions irrespective of where they are from. Thus the saying that "You behave like Romans when you go to Rome” is applicable here. Different ethnic traditions demand different ways of doing things. In some regions, certain foods that are eaten everywhere else in the world might be considered taboo in some parts of Nigeria. In some places, people are expected to eat with bare hands, while in others they can eat with cutleries (spoon, fork etc). People also have different ways of greeting, some ethnic regions expect their elders to be greeted while prostrating or bowing, however in other ethnic communities it does not matter how one greets. These are the things visitors should be aware of so as understand the country very well. Social strata exist just like in most countries, some regions have extremely rich people that enjoy everything good life can bring, while in others visitors might see people that are so poor that they barely have something to eat let alone enjoy luxuries of life. Individual Independence is not a strong factor in Nigeria unlike in the United States. Most people in Nigeria have their choices made for them and which they must take. In most cases, men and women can not freely choose when and who to get married to. Some of these choices are made by their parents or families. People in my country have strong attachment to family ties, they tend to live together and share family bonds. Visitors should know this so they will understand better when they witness any strong family affection. It should not be strange to visitors when they see or hear people condemn people who are living together but not married. This is a strong issue in my country and it’s considered a taboo. Likewise pregnancy outside marriage is a taboo and the people involved most times are forced to do some sacrifices to appease the gods. These issues discussed above are but not limited to the things visitors coming to Nigeria should know so they will not misinterpret or misunderstand intercultural values. I strongly believe that if visitors to Nigeria are at least informed of the different values, customs and cultures of the country, they will understand better the essence of intercultural values and so respect each country's traditions.

Cite This Document

Related Documents

  • Should I Be Proud of My Country

    ...SHOULD I BE PROUD OF MY COUNTRY? Why am I proud of my country you ask, there are many reasons to it… some of them have been illustrated here forth… haffun… 1. Where else would you be allowed to pee on the road, on street intersections, footpaths, in short any place you would like. I have known that animals use a tactic of urinating ove...

    Read More
  • my country

    ...CURRICULUM VITAE PERSONAL PROFILE NAME: Nyarko, Christa Akosua DATE OF BIRTH: 22ndDecember, 1985 PLACE OF BIRTH: Hwidiem REGION: ...

    Read More
  • My Country

    ...Our Country Our Country, the Union of Myanmar, is known as the land of golden pagodas. Myanmar is surrounded by big countries like China in the north and India and Bengladish to the west. Thailand and laos lie to the east of Myanmar and the south is the east of Myanmar and the south is the sea. Its area is about 676553 square kilometer...

    Read More
  • Intercultural Analysis of My Big Fat Greek Wedding

    ...An Intercultural Analysis of My Big Fat Greek Wedding GDUFS SEIB1104 Nicole Guan As a typical intercultural movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding is about Toula, a lower middle class Greek American woman who fell in love with a non-Greek upper middle class “white Anglo-Saxon Protestant” Ian Miller. They overcame a series of difficulties and e...

    Read More
  • MY country

    ... The word ‘MALAYSIA’ automatically remains us that a country with multi-ethnic society. Multi-ethnic society means what? It is made up with different ethnic background people. Why it referring to Malaysia? This is because in Malaysia people with different ethnic and various races were living together in peaceful manner. One of the major p...

    Read More
  • My Country, My Home

    ...say this? This is because Malaysia is a good country in the universe. Malaysia is a country full of many different things. However, my country is also full of good points which makes many people love it. Firstly, the food is different from state to state. For example, in Ipoh, I can eat many food which cannot be eaten in other states,...

    Read More
  • My Vision to My Country

    ...“I belive that no country can prosper until the people themselves realises the worth of their country”. Unity, Faith and Discipline, was the slogan of Mohammad Ali Jinnah but unfortunatley few follow him.Today we are fighting,we are arrogantt and most of all we have corrupt politicans OVERVIEW It is an undeniable and well-established ...

    Read More
  • Things to Know About Malunggay

    ...THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT MALUNGGAY: Malunggay Scientific Name : Moringa Oleifera Also known as: "Malunggáy" in Philippines, "Sajina" in India, "Shojne" in   Bengal, "Munagakaya" in   Telugu, "Shenano" in   Rajasthani, "Shevaga" in   Marathi, "Nuggekai" in Kannada, "Drumstick Tree, Horse Radish Tree, Ben Oil Tree" in English, "La mu" in Chi...

    Read More

Discover the Best Free Essays on StudyMode

Conquer writer's block once and for all.

High Quality Essays

Our library contains thousands of carefully selected free research papers and essays.

Popular Topics

No matter the topic you're researching, chances are we have it covered.