Making Acquaintances: Differences And Similarities
1.You will provide a brief cultural write-up relating to Japan(20 points)
- Historical background
- Communication styles (language, both verbal and non-verbal)
- Beliefs (religion, family, nature, etc.)
- Society structure (gender equality, role of children, family, ethnic groups, leaders, government, political ideologies, hierarchies)
VERY IMPORTANT – your final score will greatly depend on this.
In the next sections, associations SHOULD be made with the value orientations addressed in the Values portion of this course:
- Human Nature (Universalism-Particularism, Good/Evil, High-Context/Low-Context, Uncertainty Avoidance)
- Relation to Nature (Subjugation, Harmony, Mastery, Inner-/Outer-Directed)
- Activity Orientation (Achievement/Ascription, Doing-Being-Being-Becoming)
- Human Relationships (Affectivity/Affective Neutrality, Instrumental/Expressive, Self (Individualistic)/Collective (Collateral)/Linear, Egalitarian/Hierarchical, Power Distance)
- Relation to Time (Past-Present-Future, Monochronic/Polychronic, Low-Context/High-Context
2. Each student will provide a list of ‘Reasons for Codes of Cultural Behavior’ for tourists visiting his/her representative country. This list will explain to tourists why it is important that they follow each of the Do’s and Don’ts (that you listed in your Making Acquaintances: Do’s and Don’t’s assignment), from the hosts’ cultural (values of the culture) perspective, and should include the following: (40 points)
- Five major ‘Do’s’ for tourists
- At least one appropriate value orientation of the culture for each ‘Do’ (20 points) (Describe in detail one distinct value orientation for each Do. Do not repeat value orientations for the items on the list of Dos.)
- Five major ‘Don’ts’ for tourists
- At least one appropriate value orientation of the culture for each ‘Don’t’ (20 points) (Describe in detail one distinct value orientation for each Don’t. Do not repeat value orientations for the items on the list of Don’t’s.)
3. Each student will provide APA-style citations within the text whenever applicable and compile a list of APA-style references (reference page) for all resources used in his/her write-up (5 points).
4. On the ‘Making Acquaintances Part 2’ discussion forum, each student will post his/her findings about the representative country in a thread by the due date.
5. Each student is required to read the findings of one other student and respond to the posting of the other student by identifying the following, on or before the response due date (10 points):
- One major cultural value commonality between his/her country and the other country (5 points)
- One major cultural value difference between his/her country and the other country (5 points)
Please respond Student A and B:
History of Nigeria: The first evidence of humans living in what is now known as Nigeria, dates back to about 9000 BCE. The oldest evidence found was a part of a society called the Nok culture. The evidence found was primarily made of terra-cotta figurines that were found by miners in the early 1930’s. Before the British took control over Nigeria in the late 19th century, there were many kingdoms ranging in size that had emerged there. Several wars including the Yoruba, and the Sokota jihad, heightened the desire of slave trade while Britain was trying to end it. Prior, slaves had been traded for European goods such as guns, but while Britain was actively trying to end the slave trade, they began to trade more oils, specifically palm oil and natural resources. The trade of palm oil made the slave trade worsen because slaves were responsible inthe prouction of the oil. By the 1870’s, the trade in Nigeria was making money, and French companies noticed. During this time, a British businessman bought out the French competitors and began the Royal Niger Company. With the success over these territories, the area’s name was changed to the Protectorate of Nigeria and was governed by Sir Fredrick Lugard. British rule established a lot of new things by law in Nigeria in regards to religion, education, and language. Nigeria gained independence on October 1, 1960, and became a republic in 1963. A midwest region was created in 1963, dividing the Western region into 3 states. Throughout the 1980’s-1990’s, there was a military regime and eventually the country practices a representative democratic republic, where executive power is all in the government. (Ajayi, & Kirk-Greene, 2019).
Communication styles: Nigeria has 300 extremely diverse ethnic groups with their own communication styles. The most uniformly used language is English, although Igbo, Hausa, and Yoruba are the most dominant indiginous languages. People in Nigeria like to use titles over first names, such as: Uncle, Sir, Boss, Auntie, Chief, etc. Within business meetings, Nigerians tend to include personal topics such as hobbies, and family in order to create warmth and comfort in conversation. Lastly, Nigerians tend to have long, timely handshakes, and a sign of rush, is disrespectful. (Warburton, 2017).
Beliefs: In Nigeria, there are three different types of marriages: Religious, Civil, and Traditional. Religious marriages take place in a church or mosque. A Christian man is allowed one wife, but a Muslim man is allowed four wives. A Civil marriage take place in a government facility, and men are allowed only one wife. Lastly, a Traditional wedding is taken place in the wife’s home, and follows the customs of the ethnic group of the couple. In Nigeria it is estimated that 50% of the population is Muslim, 40% is Christian and 10% is independent. There are tensions that have led to many deaths between Muslims and Christians in Nigeria. (Urry, 2010).
Society Structure: According to the United Nations Development Programs, there has been a huge progression of gender equality in Nigeria. The main growth has been in education. There are now far more educated women then there used to be. In certain parts of Nigeria, gender equality is not valued and women are not getting jobs they are qualified for, and are also prone to sexual violence. With more women in public office, the gap will grow smalled and smaller. (Yengayenge, 2019). Children are appreciated and represent future and often influence marriages. Young boys around the ages of 4-5, are expected to help their fathers in the fields, while young girls are expected to help their mothers with household duties. There are many ethnic groups in Nigeria, each bordering ethno-religious lines. In the north the predominant ethnicity is Hausa-Fulani. Islam is important to their identity and their culture is patriarchal. In southeast Nigeria, Igbo is the most predominant ethnicity. Contrasting from the north, Igbo is known to be decentralized and non-hierarchical. (“Ethnicity in Nigeria”, 2007). The current president is Muhammadu Buhari, who was elected in 2015 and is the 15th President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. (Urry, 2010).
Reasons for Code and Ethical Behavior:
5 Major Do’s for tourists:
Dress casually but modest (no short shorts, or revealing clothes of any kind). (Topetta, 2019)
Elongate hand shakes and be welcoming with a smile (Topetta, 2019)
Bow down to elders, Respect for elders is crucial (Topetta, 2019)
When invited into a home, bring gifts for the children (nuts, fruit, etc.) (Topetta, 2019)
Say that the gift is from a woman if you are a man giving the gift (mother, sister, any female relative). (“DOs and DONTs, 2011).
The way one dresses falls under the Past Relation to Time. This portion focuses on past traditions and the respect of ancestors. Therefore, dressing modest is a tradition that Nigerians follow and expect of outsiders for the respect of the past.
Elongating hand shakes falls under the High Context portion. This portion highlights non verbal communication and how others are expected to know and sense the behavior, therefore stating that one is supposed to be aware of this cultural behavior.
Respecting elders falls under the Linear portion of the Human Relationships. This portion highlights obedience and respect of authority. Therefore stating that it is crucial in Nigeria to respect authority and elders.
Bringing gifts to a Nigerians home is part of the Activity Orientation. This portion focuses on assessing people or tangible objects, in order to predict behaviors. Therefore, by following this cultural norm, in which is bringing an object, one can assess this and predict good behavior.
By mentioning that the gift was from a woman, this is comes from the Masculinity portion of Activity orientation. This portion focuses on gender inequalities, differentiated sex roles, and is poessessions oriented.
5 Major Don’ts for tourists:
Do not use your left hand at ALL, it is considered dirty. No shaking hands with the left hand, no greeting with the left hand, nothing. (“DOs and DONTs, 2011).
Do not use a facial expression that does not show empathy, Nigerians appreciate strong facial expressions to express interest. (“DOs and DONTs, 2011).
Do not hold eye contact, can be seen as intrusive and overpowering. (“DOs and DONTs, 2011).
Do not try to wear Nigerian clothes. Nigerians believe other nationalities look pathetic and too try hard when they do. (“DOs and DONTs, 2011).
Do not criticize Nigerians, but do not be too polite, because they take that as a weakness. (“DOs and DONTs, 2011).
Using the left hand falls under the Universalism portion of Human Nature. This is because this is a universal, standardized rule that everyone is expected to follow whether from Nigeria, or visiting.
Facial expressions fall under the Particularism portion of Human Nature. This is because situationally, the expressions will be different. Nigerians expect some sort of reactions while in conversation which depends on interactions.
Eye contact falls under the High Context portion. This is because it is a non verbal communication that everybody in Nigeria is expected to follow circumstantially.
Not being able to wear Nigerian clothes as a tourist stems from the Collateral portion of Human relationships. This portion recognizes group consensus and harmony. Therefore if someone outside of the culture comes in and immerse themselves in physical Nigerian culture, Nigerians would know that it is an embarrassment for the tourists thus the tourists would be shunned from an entire group.
Being cautious of what to say in Nigeria and making sure one is not too stern or polite, this falls under the Expressive portion of Human relationships. This portion focuses on social interactions and how they are valued in order to get along. Therefore, one will be self aware in order to not be made a fool of, or disrespectful, by talking and creating a relationship with a Nigerian.
Ajayi, J. F. A., & Kirk-Greene, A. H. M. (2019, November 21). Nigeria under Buhari. Retrieved January 2, 2020, from https://www.britannica.com/place/Nigeria/Nigeria-under-Buhari.
Nigeria Travel Tips – DOs and DONTs. (2011, March 13). Retrieved January 2, 2020, from http://www.traveltaboo.com/nigeria-travel-tips-dos-and-donts/.
NewsHour, P. B. S. (2007, April 5). Ethnicity in Nigeria. Retrieved January 2, 2020, from https://www.pbs.org/newshour/arts/africa-jan-june07-ethnic_04-05.
Urry, T. C. (2010, April 29). Nigeria. Retrieved January 2, 2020, from https://www.everyculture.com/Ma-Ni/Nigeria.html.
Warburton, K. (2017, March 23). Nigerian Communication Styles. Retrieved January 2, 2020, from https://www.worldbusinessculture.com/country-profiles/nigeria/culture/business-communication-style/.
Yengayenge, C. (2019, June 20). Goal 5: Gender equality: UNDP in Nigeria. Retrieved January 2, 2020, from https://www.ng.undp.org/content/nigeria/en/home/sustainable-development-goals/goal-5-gender-equality.html.
Cultural Write Up – Italy Making Acquaintances Diff. & Similarities
Italy became a nation-state in 1861, when the city states of the peninsula along with Sardinia and Sicily were all united under King Victor Emmanuel. Parliamentary government ended in the early 1920’s when Benito Mussolini established a faciast dictatorship. In 1946 a democratic monarchy replaced the dictatorship, and an economic revival followed. Italy has been the forefront of the European economic and political unification, joining the European Monetary Union in 1999. Ongoing problems in Italy include; illegal immigration, organized crime and corruption, high unemployment, and low incomes in southern italy compared to northern Italy (“Italy Country Profile”, 2020)
Typically Italians tend to be social, expressive and animated. Italians also tend to be loud and it is safe to expect interruptions while speaking. They also tend to be eloquent in the way they speak. Silence during a conversation is rare and silence tends to make italians uncomfortable (Aguliar, 2013). Italians are also famous for their non-verbal communication style. They often greet friends with a tight hug or a kiss on either cheek. You can also find them greeting people with a hand shake, nod, slap on the back or a smile (“Italian non-verbal greetings,” 2018).
71.4% of Italians are Christian. Making Christianity the dominant religion and the majority of the country being of Catholic denomination. The Catholic church accounts for 93% of Christians in Italy (“The Religious Demographics of Italy, 2019”). The family is a very important aspect in the beliefs of Italians. The family provides emotional and economic support. Parents typically have authority over the children. There is also a lot of respect shown towards elderly. Families tend to have a patriarchal head, and more traditional values. However, some non conservative family values are accepted. (“Cultural Atlas, 2020”).
In 2019 it was reported that the population of Italy was estimated to be 59 million people. The ethnic group that dominates the country is Italian (includes small clusters of German-, French-, and Slovene-Italians in the north and Albanian-Italians and Greek-Italians in the south). The government is a Republic. Italian is the official language of Italy and 93% of the population speak the regional dialect. The family is the center of the social structure and they are typically nuclear families. The family provides both emotional and economic stability (“Italy-Language, Culture, Customs, and Etiquette”, 2019).
Reasons for Codes of Cultural Behavior
Five Major “Do’s” for Tourists:
1. When meeting someone, try to use phrases like “Buon Giorno” or “Buona Sera” as these are appropriate when talking to a stranger (“Ten Do’s and Don’ts of Italian Travel Etiquette,” 2018).
2. Italian locals do appreciate when you try to speak Italian so it’s important to learn some basic phrases before you travel (“Ten Do’s and Don’ts of Italian Travel Etiquette,” 2018).
3. Italian culture is much more conservative in comparison to American culture. It is important to cover your shoulders and knees. Especially if travel plans include exploring any of the many churches in Italy as you may not be permitted to enter if you are not dressed modestly (“Seven Do’s and Don’ts When Traveling in Italy,” 2012).
4. To wish someone good morning or good evening Italians will kiss both friends and strangers on either cheek (“A Guide to Italy,” 2019).
5. You should introduce yourself before asking to speak with someone on the telephone (“Social Customs in Italy,” 2010).
Value Orientation for Major Cultural Do’s
“Human Relationships” appropriately matches the first “Do” on the list because, by appropriately and respectfully greeting someone while in the host country will make for the start of healthy relationship or at least a cordial interaction.
“Human Nature” appropriately matches the second “Do” on the list because, by speaking the hosts language tourists are showing an initiative to interact with someone from a different country. This promotes universalism.
“Relation to Time” appropriately matches the third “Do” on the list because, Italians live a very conservative and traditional way of life that pays tribute to the past. Although this may not match the values of other cultures, it shows respect to the host country.
“Relation to Nature” appropriately matches the fourth “Do” on the list because this is an outward depiction of harmony.
“Activity Orientation” appropriately matches the fifth and final “Do” on the list because, Although quite formal, it shows that you as a tourist are immersing yourself in the cultural activities and values of the host country.
Five Major “Don’ts” for Tourists:
1. One thing that seems to be a big pet peeve for Italian locals is when tourists block walkways. While either walking side by side, or walking slow and stopping to look at the sites. The streets are notoriously narrow, and it can be difficult for the locals to live their daily lives with so many tourists visiting all year round (“Seven Do’s and Don’ts When Traveling in Italy,” 2012).
2. Never eat or drink while inside the churches (“A Guide to Italy,” 2019).
3. It is considered rude if you refuse a “top off” of wine during a meal (“A Guide to Italy,” 2019).
4. Do not seat yourself while visiting the local restaurants. It is important to wait for your hostess (“A Guide to Italy,” 2019).
5. Do not insult your host or hostess. As a tourist you may be excused but, you most likely won’t be invited again (“A Guide to Italy,” 2019).
Value Orientation for Major Cultural Don’ts
“Activity Orientation” appropriately matches the first “Don’t” on the list because, this directly correlates with doing, and being. It is important as tourists to be aware that you are in the host country and things are different.
“Relation to time” appropriately matches the second “Don’t” on the list because, The church and religion is a big part of Italian history and it is important to Italians that everyone, including tourists uphold a certain degree of decorum and respect when inside the churches.
“Human Nature” appropriately matches the third “Don’t” on the list because, Although not even thought about in other cultures, the Italians see this as rude. So, when visiting it is important to immerse oneself into the host culture as much as one is comfortable with to avoid culture shock.
“Relation to Nature” appropriately matches the fourth “Don’t” on the list because, it is important not to subjugate the host/hostess when visiting another country. Especially Italy as it is an important value of theirs for the host/hostess to have a certain level of control in a situation pertaining to guests.
“Human Relationships” appropriately matches the fifth and final “Don’t” on the list because, just like in many cultures it is important to respect the person who is serving you.
7 Do’s and Don’ts When Traveling in Italy. (2012, May 30). Retrieved from https://www.walksofitaly.com/blog/travel-tips/italy-travel-tips
10 Do’s and Don’ts of Italian Travel Etiquette. (2018, September 22). Retrieved from https://www.livitaly.com/10-dos-donts-of-italian-travel-etiquette/
Guide to Italy. (2019, January 1). Retrieved from https://www.kwintessential.co.uk/resources/guide-italy-etiquette-customs-culture-business
Social Customs in Italy. (2010, September 17). Retrieved from https://www.justlanded.com/english/Italy/Articles/Culture/Social-customs-in-Italy
Italy – Country Profile – Nations Online Project. (2020, January 1). Retrieved from https://www.nationsonline.org/oneworld/italy.htm
Italian Non-verbal Greetings – Life in Italy. (2018, June 30). Retrieved from https://www.lifeinitaly.com/lifestyle/non-verbal-communication
Communication Styles in Italy. (2013, November 12). Retrieved from https://prezi.com/ntm6mi-t93d5/communication-styles-in-italy/
The Religious Demographics of Italy. (2019, June 29). Retrieved from https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/the-religious-demographics-of-italy.html
Italian Culture. (2020, January 1). Retrieved from https://culturalatlas.sbs.com.au/italian-culture/italian-culture-family
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