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Cultural differences. Why are they important. Compare two cultures

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Functions of etiquette knowledge in people’s life.Everydaycourtesies.Publicproprieties.Etiquette and Rules of Behavior Etiquette for Personal Contact.

First of all I’ll give you the definition of etiquette.

E – a set of behavior rules. It is thoughtful behavior to people around us.

Etiquette is correct interpersonal behavior.

Etiquette plays important functions in people’s life:

First of all, it makes people feel more comfortable. Etiquette puts people around us at ease. It makes our life pleasanter and more relaxed for everyone.

As a result, it improves the quality of our life.

Etiquette is a set of rules prescribed ( established, formed, made) by society. So, we can say, that etiquette regulates the life of a society.

We can feel etiquette in everyday life looking at everyday courtesies.

Courtesies mean respect of other people, calm and polite relationships. Courtesies help to low stress in your everyday life and deal with (contact, interact) your colleagues, neighbors, relatives, friends.

Courtesies included public proprieties, manners between men and women, polite talks and so on.

For example, greetings. It is polite to greet all people you know and even if you know people very bad, or even know the name only.

In social transport it is polite to give seats for senior (older) citizens, disabled’s (инвалид) and passengers with children. It is very important not to disturb (bother) other passengers.

Smoking – is one part of public proprieties. It can be acceptable or unacceptable. People should always ask for permission or smoke in special areas.

When people visit public places such as cinema or theatre they should also follow the rules. If you are late, be calm, don’t bother other people and apologize.

In case if you want to sneeze or cough – you should have a handkerchief (tissue) . Try to do this insensibly.

It is also very important to follow etiquette rules in communication with friends and colleagues. It is not polite to argue. It is proper to keep calm and try to solve problem constructively (effectively) with respect to your partner.

It is unacceptable to spread gossips and lie.

It is very important to have good manners and respect in interpersonal contacts.

Low stress – снизитьстресс

Public proprieties – нормыприличия

Acceptable/unacceptable – доступны/недоступны

For permission – заразрешением

Sneeze and cough – чихикашель

Handkerchief – носовойплаток

Insensibly - незаметно

Arguing - спорить

Solve problem constructively – решитьпроблемуконструктивно

Protect – защищать

To observe (follow) etiquette rules


1) What are important items of etiquette? (

2) What are main rules of etiquette? ( punctuality, calm, politeness, good manners, respect)

3) Why is it important to observe etiquette?

4) What etiquette rules must be observed in our society?

Cultural differences. Why are they important. Compare two cultures.

To begin with, I will give the definition of culture. We know that many definitions of the word “culture” exist (are), more than 400. But we choose the definition which is important for professional cross-cultural communication. Culture is a set of rules of behavior shared by a group of people and transmitted across generations.

Every nation has its culture. In different countries cultures can be very special. Often they are very contrasting. I want to show it comparing (on) German and Chinese cultures.

Germans are clear-cut and strict in saying opinions. They say what they think (without worry to offend the partner). Chinese always try to be polite and never respond (answer) angrily. Chinese can smile even if they are irritated.

Germans are individuals, they used to take responsibilities for themselves and compete with each other. Chinese are collectivists. They like to do everything in groups and support each other.

Germans are very punctual and don’t like to be late. For the Chinese it is normal to be late for 15 minutes.

Chinese can speak very loudly. For Germans it means not to be polite and educated. Chinese don’t understand the meaning of line (turn), but Germans like strict order in everything.

So, on this example we can understand how diverse (special) the cultures can be and how important is to realize cultural differences.

To exist - существовать

To share - делить

To transmit- передавать

Generations - поколения

Clear-cut - резкий

To worry - беспокоиться

To offend - обижать

To respond (answer)

To be irritated – бытьраздраженным

To take responsibilities – братьнасебяответственность

Line ( turn)- очередь

Strict – резкий, строгий

Order - порядок

Punctual - пунктуальный

Tosupport - поддерживать

Diverse – многообразный, различный




1) Why did you choose this definition of culture?( As I have already said many definition of the word “culture” exist. I have chosen this one because in my opinion it reflects the process of intercultural communication)

2) Why did you choose German and Chinese cultures to compare? (I have chosen these two cultures because they are very opposite and we can see what kind of problems can happen (be) if you don’t know these cultures).

3) What situations of misunderstanding can happen between German and Chinese people?

(For example, a Chinese businessman can be 10 minutes late for meeting because it is normal in his culture, but his German colleague will think that he is rude or not professional: A Chinese can speak in a very loud voice and German people can think that he is irritated)

4) You showed different features, what do you think they have in common? (Though these two cultures are very different, they share some common features (values):


3.Give definitions to the word “culture”. What is a culture iceberg. What are the components of culture (Levels of culture Iceberg)

To begin with, I will give the definition of culture. We know that many definitions of the word “culture” exist (are), more than 400. But we choose this definition because it is important for professional cross-cultural communication. Culture is a unique meaning and information system, a set of rules of behavior shared by a group of people and transmitted across generations. Culture is often compared with iceberg, because we can’t see the largest part of it. There are 3 levels of culture: surface culture, shallow culture and deep culture. Like an iceberg nine-tenth of culture is under its surface.

Surface culture means its elements (components) that can be easily seen. For example, food, dress, music, language, national sports and games, architecture and so on. It is very special part of culture, we can feel the difference between people and their traditions.

Shallow culture includes people’s behavior, some unspoken rules of conduct such as courtesy rules, body language, the attitude to work, meaning of food, relationships to other people. I think that everyday etiquette is a part of shallow culture. It can be very different in different countries.

Deep culture means something people follow without any thinking. For example, family relationships, attitude to older people, attitude to life, some traditions in society.

So, we can state, that culture is information about the country (people), which includes many rules and details. When we communicate (meet) with people of other cultures it is very important to remember about three levels of culture. Sometimes, we know only about visible culture, and don’t know about its biggest part which is the most important in communication.

1) Why it is important to know about culture iceberg for people who travel abroad? (When people travel abroad they don’t only visit museums or theatres , they communicate with locals. And if we don’t know the traditions which are invisible part of culture we can think that local people are rude or stupid.

2) Give your examples of visible and invisible culture traditions of any nation.

Unique – уникальный

Shared – разделять

transmitted across generations – передаватьчерезпоколение

surface – поверхность

shallow - мелкий

include – включать

unspokenrules – непроизносимыеправила

attitude – отношение

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