Provide a 2 pages analysis while answering the following question: Communication conflict between culture. Prepare this assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide. An abstract is required. Communication conflict between cultures Introduction: Communication, in its various forms, mainly verbal and non-verbal, has remained the most effective means of interaction between people from different social, cultural and linguistic discipline. In the modern world, where globalization has emerged as one of the most important factors to introduce cultural and social harmony among common people from different socio-religious traditions, communication is considered as a matter of highest importance in order to maintain the pace of such harmonization. The human existence, though, is dependent on several common factors however, every society has its own cultural traits that have been developed due to centuries of historical, religious and behaviorist approaches. Thus, when it comes to performing communication between two separate cultures, there is a high possibility that due to differences in cultural influences such process of communication and the elements of conflict that obviously remain integrally related with methods of communication among people belonging to separate socio-cultural disciplines, would contradict against one another and such problem of contradiction between cultures, in the context of communication, is surely a matter of great concern.
Communication and Intercultural Communication: Definition, Challenge and Theories
According to scholarly interpretations, the process of communication can be defined “[as] a system of behavior” (Novinger 4). Consequently, it has also been identified that “[because] different cultures often demand very different behaviors, intercultural communication is more complex than communication between persons of same culture” (Novinger 4). However, in order to over the obstacles of intercultural communication, several attempts have been made by sociological and linguistic scholars and those attempts have resulted in considerable progress since last 20 years within the same domain. According to the theorists, the entire process of communication can be divided into two categories, namely, subjective and objective. The objectivists of intercultural communication are of opinion that another world, which is separate from general individual existence, exists and people in search of harmony among behavior of other people orient their methods of communication by depending on situations or environment. Thus, according to objectivists, communication is not self-determined. rather it is dependent on external factors like situation or environment. The subjectivists, however, have adopted quite a contrasting position than that of the objectivists as they opine that communication generates from free human behavior and proper analysis of human behavior or modes of communication from different perspectives, would also clearly help people in realizing the truth in support of the observation” (Gudykunst 167).
The case of Raymond and Joseph:
The conflict of communication between Raymond and Joseph, who belong to two different domains of cultural existence, becomes a practical proof in support of the challenges that people encounter in the context of intercultural communication. Raymond being white and Joseph, on the other, being Native American, have different approaches towards life and mutual interaction, which has been developed under influence of their respective cultural upbringing. Both the sociological and historical trends of America clearly provide evidence in support of the observation that as whites have, for ages, dominated over their African American and Native American counterparts, they generally consider themselves superior than the latter. At the same time, the attempts of proving themselves superior in every aspect of life are also quite evident in their respective behavior (Feagin 206-207). In Raymond’s behavior towards Joseph, the same traditional traits of dominance or unconscious attempts to prove his cultural superiority are evident. Raymond’s refusal to share his umbrella or his fury regarding the fact that Joseph’s Native American friends have sat on his bed without his permission show that he has a sense of supremacy. The same sense has actually prevented him from regarding himself equal to that of Joseph or to people belonging to different cultural traditions. His attempt to establish his supremacy over Joseph becomes quite explicit as he suggests Joseph to accept the $10, as if he wanted to prove his superior financial capacity than that of the latter. His munching of chips, while Joseph is sleeping, is also representative of the approach that as he regards his room partner socially and culturally inferior to him, that is why Joseph is required to make all sorts of adjustments alone and he can execute his choices in his own ways. The process of communication between these people, belonging in two different cultural situations, could have been easier if Raymond would have shown certain respect or flexible approach towards Joseph.
The problems that Raymond and Joseph have encountered during process of their communication due to their cultural differences, is quite random in daily course of individual action. No matter how much theorists have come up with different methods to solve this problem, however, the best possible way to make situation easy in case of intercultural communication is to empathize and have a respectful attitude towards other people as well as their respective cultures. Once people learn to believe that like their own culture, every other culture has certain uniqueness and novelty of approach and they learn to interpret those aspects with respect, the situation becomes easier to handle the conflict of intercultural communication in a better way.
Feagin, Joe R. Racist America: roots, current realities, and future reparations. London:
Gudykunst, William B. Cross-cultural and intercultural communication. London: SAGE.
Novinger, Tracy. Intercultural communication: a practical guide. Texas: University of
Texas Press. 2001.