Post 10

“Communication must be HOT. That’s honest, open and two-way. ” Dan Oswald

I am appreciative for this semester and the concepts I have been able to learn from our class. There were many new aspects of intercultural communication that I will take into my personal and professional career in dealing with various cultures. The main concept that I learned from our class that will help me with future interactions in other cultures is the fact that I need to be willing to accommodate to the cultural norms and expectations of the other culture. I think of the experience that Scott and his partner, George had in Ghana doing business with them. George approached the culture with an arrogant, ethnocentric view with the mindset that they would be able to do business in the way that he was always used to. They both had to learn the hard way that if they were going to be successful in doing business that they would have to respect the cultural differences.

Another effective example of this is a guest entering the house of another for dinner. That guest must take into account the expectations of that household in order to be respected.

In conclusion, there are many other concepts and lessons that I would love to elaborate on learned from class apart from this, but this is the main concept I wanted to elaborate on. I hope that I was able to effectively reflect my concept learned through this blog.

Post 9

“The great myth of our time is that technology is communication.” Libby Larsen

One of my favorite shows growing up was the cartoon, “Jackie Chan Adventures.” Jackie Chan is the main character in this show and he is of Asian descent. Many of the characters, including him were talented at karate. Because of this show I made the assumption that all Asians were good at karate. This is an effective example how popular media has an impact on our cultural views and how it influences our culture. There are many other individuals who will make assumptions based on popular media. I was shocked when I found out that not all of Africa is poor and desolate. Since individuals are exposed to popular media it will constantly have an impact on their views.

It’s vital that individuals be aware of the cultural differences within new cultures they experience. This was what stood out to me about our speaker’s presentation. He mentioned how he and his partner were not aware of the cultural differences, and because of this they had a more difficult time doing business there. He also mentioned how they were guests there, and it’s important for individuals to be aware of cultural differences to accommodate accordingly to them.

Post 8

“Only through communication can human life hold meaning.” Paulo Freire

I had the opportunity to talk to one of my friends who is involved in an interracial relationship. It was interesting hearing her input on this relationship in relation to topics we’ve discussed in class. She mentioned how her family questioned this decision made by her wondering if there would be too many cultural differences between them. Her family’s views of their marriage relates to ideology, which is the collective beliefs, attitudes, perceptions, and values know to members of a culture which guide their actions. She also mentioned how at first it was difficult for her husband to gain equality within her family, but it has steadily improved throughout the years.

Listening to the LBGTQ was an extremely beneficial experience for me for what I was able to learn. A valuable lesson I learned is how an individual’s culture and background has an influence on the decisions they make, and how it will have an impact on them. When the members of the group were sharing their experiences, it seemed that a common theme among them was how their personal and family’s religious views had an impact on their decisions. The culture and ideology that an individual has adopted will impact their decisions and how they feel about it.

NPR talk assignment

NPR/Ted Talk Assignment
Jordan Bumgardner
Utah Valley University

Understanding my Privilege

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Those in positions of power hold a privilege accorded to their status, one that they may not recognize, by simple virtue of having that privilege.” (Lawler 1997 pg. 18). This is a quote from one of the articles that I read for my subject of privilege that I will be discussing. I chose to watch a Ted Talk featuring, Sue Borrego titled, “Understanding My Privilege”. I will present the solutions I developed in relation to this issue and feature several articles that support them.
The first solution towards this issue is that individuals should be allowed the same amount of equity regardless of their race, and gender. My first article, “Lawler, P. A. (1996). Ethics, Equity, and Hidden Privilege. Adult Learning, 8(2-), 18-19, illustrates a story of an off-campus seminar at Lawfield University taught by Dr. Vandana Shiva, who was a young woman, wore a sari, and spoke with a slight accent. Jack Barnes was the director of these continuing education programs. One of their important clients was Megacorp, and they relied heavily on their business. Jack received a call from the education director at Megacorp, stating that several of the executives asked him to replace Dr. Shiva. The complaints were not in reference to her teaching, but they felt uncomfortable with the fact that she was different. This story illustrates the need for individuals to be treated equally. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. has a famous quote that relates well to this point, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color their skin, but by the content of their character.” I understand that this solution presents many difficulties, because human nature and biases are hard to resolve, but I feel that this solution can be directed towards organizations. I think of the movie, “Hidden Figures” in relation to this solution. Katherine Johnson, who is a black woman is the main character in this film. She works at NASA, and begins as a temp. She is treated poorly based on her race. Eventually, she gains favor in the eyes of the CEO, Al Harrison, for her work. There are still several individuals who are inconveniencing her due to her race. Al takes a stand against this racism, and allows her the same opportunity as the other employees. In summary, within organizations, and as individuals we need to allow everyone equal opportunity for privileges.
There are individuals who have the benefit of having more privilege than others. It is vital that their privilege be used to benefit the lives of others. This is my second solution. My second article, Hernandez‐Wolfe, P., & McDowell, T. (2012). Speaking of privilege: Family therapy educators’ journeys toward awareness and compassionate action. Family Process, 51(2), 163-178. doi:10.1111/j.1545-5300.2012.01394.x gives more insight on this solution. Family therapy educators who are in a position of privilege due to their positions and social locations. They use their positions as a means of creating and modeling equity their family therapy training. By using their privilege, they benefit the lives of others and create a sense of equity. Their example is a great model that we can follow. This story is not in relation to the article, but about the ted talk that I watched. Sue Borrego explains how her grandma worked downtown. She took Sue with her and they saw a man sleeping in the windowsill of a building. She said, “Look nanny, look at that guy sleeping in the window.” Her grandma said, “You have a place to sleep, food to eat, and people who care for you. That does not make you better than that man, but more fortunate.” This story, and the article features how individuals who are in a privileged position should benefit the lives of others.
In conclusion, individuals should be allowed the same amount of privilege, regardless of their background, and those individuals who have more privilege than another should benefit the lives of those who are less privileged. I hope that I was able to effectively illustrate my solutions and insights to privilege through my personal research.

References
Hernandez-Wolfe, P., & McDowell, T. (2012). Speaking of Privilege: Family Therapy Educators’ Journeys toward Awareness and Compassionate Action. Family Process, 51(2), 163-178.
Lawler, P. A. (1996). Ethics, equity, and hidden privilege. Adult Learning, 818-19.

 

Post 7

“Words, once they are printed, have a life of their own.” Carol Burnett
My views of privilege have changed from a few weeks ago. Researching the topic for my group’s presentation has changed my view. Before our discussions on it, I never felt it was much of an issue, or a factor that impacts our society. My views have changed because of I realize it is a factor in our society that needs to be addressed. The video we used for our presentation puts into perspective this concern in today’s society. Unfortunately, those who are considered to have less privilege may not experience the same benefits in life compared to those who have more privilege.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t in class the day we had the activity. I hope that by me discussing the privilege walk will suffice for this section of the post. The privilege walk put into perspective how many privileges that I should be thankful that I enjoy. I’m grateful for the discussions we’ve had in class on this topic that have opened my eyes to this factor in our society.

Post 10

“Communication must be HOT. That’s honest, open and two-way. ” Dan Oswald

I am appreciative for this semester and the concepts I have been able to learn from our class. There were many new aspects of intercultural communication that I will take into my personal and professional career in dealing with various cultures. The main concept that I learned from our class that will help me with future interactions in other cultures is the fact that I need to be willing to accommodate to the cultural norms and expectations of the other culture. I think of the experience that Scott and his partner, George had in Ghana doing business with them. George approached the culture with an arrogant, ethnocentric view with the mindset that they would be able to do business in the way that he was always used to. They both had to learn the hard way that if they were going to be successful in doing business that they would have to respect the cultural differences.

Another effective example of this is a guest entering the house of another for dinner. That guest must take into account the expectations of that household in order to be respected.

In conclusion, there are many other concepts and lessons that I would love to elaborate on learned from class apart from this, but this is the main concept I wanted to elaborate on. I hope that I was able to effectively reflect my concept learned through this blog.

 

Post 5

“Communication works for those who work at it.” John Powell

Privilege is a topic that I had never considered so frequently before this class. it has been alarming to me how fortunate I am for the privileges I enjoy. The activity we had in class where we had to pick a clip for each point we related to within each subject opened my eyes more fully towards this. There were times where I felt guilty taking some of those clips for myself. As we’ve discussed in class, when an individual is in the majority they don’t have to think about how their behaviors will affect others. They also have an advantage professionally. There’s a story that illustrates this point found in the HR and White Privilege article. A black candidate for a managerial position was asked by a white consultant about his goals. He answered that he wanted to help his daughter learn healthy grooming habits. The white consultant complained that this was a ridiculous answer. The author responded that all parents need to teach their children healthy grooming habits. If a white male had answered in the same way the white consultant wouldn’t have questioned the answer.

I served an LDS mission in St. Louis, Missouri. This was a time in my life where I felt that I was the minority. Missionaries are required to adhere to a dress code daily. They are to wear white shirts and ties, as well as name tags. Dressing like this caused me to stand out among others. Because I stood out I had to think about my actions and how they affected others. I would ensure to keep my conduct professional in order to accommodate the majority. This experience was enlightening in how I view privilege.

I was thoroughly impressed with presentation Patience gave in class. His topics were white privilege, the history of South Africa, and the war between Israel and the Palestinians. He stated how the people of Israel justified in claiming land because of their religious beliefs, and the Palestinians justified it due to their human justification stating that they were there first. This caused me to reflect on how individuals justify their actions.  Individuals have a tendency to justify their actions whether right or wrong, when they believe they’re right. This justification causes conflict between two parties, because they will be unable to see from the other’s perspective. Unfortunately, there is still racism today. I believe that one of the causes of this today is due to individuals justifying their actions  towards parties that they feel may be inferior. I appreciated the comments and concepts shared by Patience today.

Cultural Self-Assessment

Jordan Bumgardner

Intercultural Communication

Utah Valley University

Cultural Self-Assessment

            Introduction:

            In this introduction I will include a brief synopsis of some of my personal interests, achievements, and goals. I am a senior working towards my bachelor’s degree in speech communication. I am co-president for the National Communication Association for students at UVU. I graduated as a cum laude student at Snow College with my Associate in Science. Theater, music, fishing, and sports are all passions of mine. I play the piano, ukulele, and guitar. I enjoy playing basketball, and I have been involved in several plays. Obtaining my master’s in speech pathology has been a priority of mine, and is one of the many goals that I am working towards.

            Cultural Identity:

            An individual’s identity has an impact on how they will be viewed by others. There are several factors that make up an identity. These include; race, gender, and socioeconomic class. I am a white male, middle class. My identity will impact my personal facets in life, including; academically, socially, and professionally. I am associated the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I live in Utah, and the LDS religion is considered to be the dominant one. Since I am LDS in Utah I typically don’t have to think about that since my views are rarely challenged. I grew up in Utah, mainly living in Utah County. Based upon my experience living here and being integrated into other counties, Utah County has a unique culture associated with it. The LDS members tend to have a stricter outlook on the LDS religion, and how it should be lived. Again, this is based on my personal observations and experience of it. I grew up in Lehi, Utah. It is predominantly white. Because of this I had little exposure to those who were different from myself. When I experienced these moments of diversity it caused me to reflect on my personal cultural identity and reevaluate my views. This story will further elaborate on my last point. One of the teachings of the LDS church is to abstain from drinking coffee. My sophomore year was the first time that belief of mine was ever challenged. I was in class with some friends and I explained to them how tired I felt. One of them offered her coffee drink to me. I refused and told her that it was against my beliefs. When individuals are in the majority they don’t have to focus on their behaviors, but when their behaviors and choices are questioned they feel a sense of being uncomfortable. Feeling this uneasiness creates a desire to return to their sense of identity within the majority.

            Ideas about Cultural Groups Different from Your Own:

            Knowledge is power. I feel that it’s safe to say that most individuals will experience some sort of cultural change in their lives. Cultural changes constitute many kinds of changes that can be experienced. Some of these can include; moving to a new place, changing schools, and getting married. This kind of change brings a different culture associated with it. Integrating into a new culture involves adjusting to the norms, beliefs, and values of it. My purpose in stating what was said previously is to stress the importance of being culturally diverse. In this section I will discuss the valuable concepts I obtained from these two cultural identifications, gender and race. I will address several questions regarding women and the African American population.

            Women’s Rights. (2016). Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia, 1p. 1. Women have historically been viewed as submissive to the male gender in their history. This cultural view has had a negative impact on them socially and academically to name just a few of the categories. I learned that in Hinduism, the reward of a virtuous woman is the rebirth of a man. It hasn’t been until recent years that they have been able to gain recognition in these regards. Women’s rights movement arose in Europe in the late 18th century.   They have been viewed as less intelligent due to their inferiority compared to men and not being allowed the opportunity to express their views. Anthony, S. B. (2017). The status of woman, past, present, and future. Status of Woman, Past, Present, & Future, 901. Based upon their history in seeking to gain recognition women behaved submissively and were diligent in their duties in basic housekeeping. Women fit into my worldview as providers. The many women that were involved in my life were superb in providing me with the care they needed, including my mom, aunts, and cousins. My mom and dad raised me in a manner that men were viewed as the head of the household, with the woman as his equal in support. I always respected the way my father respected my mother. He would ask for her input concerning matters that were important to them, rather than just stating it was his way or the highway. From my understanding my parents were raised similarly to how they act towards each other. Their parents also believed in treating their spouses as equals.

            African Americans have historically been given titles, such as Negro and colored. Their ancestral roots are related to African slaves who were brought to the United States. Hood, S. (2017). Continuing the Exploration of African Americans in the Early History of Evaluation in the United States: Contributions of Ambrose Caliver in the U.S. Office of Education. American Journal Of Evaluation38(2), 262-274. They, similarly to women have had an unfortunate past of tribulation in gaining recognition as contributing members of society. Families were often separated due to being sold to different people. Damewood, C. (n.d.). African American Family Values. Retrieved October 06, 2017, from http://family.lovetoknow.com/african-american-family-values because of this they would often select friends and loved ones as family members. This illustrates their value of family to them. Religion is an important factor of their cultural identity. Since I was not exposed to many African Americans I did not gain a worldview of them until I was older. Serving an LDS mission in St. Louis, Missouri had a large impact on my view of the African American culture. I often felt comfortable around them because of how they were very accommodating towards me and my beliefs. They were very willing to explore my opinions on the LDS culture and I found them to be in tune with their religious values.

            Sources of Cultural Knowledge and Input:

            My knowledge obtained of these two groups were obtained from my exposure to media, personal experiences, and from others. I grew up watching sports with my dad and there were many African Americans that played on some of my favorite teams. I viewed them as athletic individuals. I also watched several movies featuring African American actors, such as Denzel Washington, Will Smith, and Eddie Murphy. They seemed to talk more and act more hyperactive, so I naturally assumed as a child that this was a trait that was associated with their identity. Rap music also seemed to be a natural aspect of their cultural identity. I met an African American individual who was a mutual friend that listened to country music. This came as a culture shock to me. Since I grew up watching them perform on sports teams I also believed that sports was their only interest. He informed that he enjoyed theater, and dance. This came as a surprise to me.

            Women in the media I was exposed to as a child confirmed my validation of their role as caregivers and providers within the home. Due to the roles that the actresses often played I also viewed women as being more responsible than men. This generalization came largely in part from the movie, “Mrs. Doubtfire”, which is a movie I enjoyed as a child. In this film, Robin Williams struggles to maintain a job, and Sally Field is the sole provider for the family. I also viewed quite a few Disney movies, which featured several princesses. Disney viewed them as hopeless romantics, dependent on a prince to save them, and having difficult life circumstances. Due to these movies I often felt that women were hopeless romantics in need of rescuing.

            In conclusion, there are three different areas of interest that I have in reference to intercultural communication. My first area is cultural norms. The question that relates to this area is, can norms from other cultures gradually be integrated into another culture if enough members of the society integrate that behavior, or is it still going to be classified as something out of the ordinary? Secondly, creating an awareness towards racism in our culture in an effective, yet critical way. We had a great discussion in class on this subject. It was stated that if we don’t speak about it the issue will never be resolved. It seems that this will always be an issue, but is this something that can ever be lessened? Thirdly, how can an individual’s identity tied to a specific place be altered when they integrate to a different culture. Individuals will experience many different types of cultural changes within their lives. I hope that in this assessment I was able to effectively explain my thoughts towards the subjects I presented.

Post 4

“We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we can speak.” Epictetus

I have thoroughly appreciated and enjoyed the concepts I’ve learned thus far in class. There have been several that have stuck out to me. 

The first concept that has stood out to me is the conversation we had in class about how the world has categorized the different races. We watched a clip in class where several black girls spoke on their experiences of being that color. It was disheartening to me to hear them discuss the difficulties that they experienced. Before this discussion, I knew that racism is still unfortunately an issue that is experienced today, but I never considered it to be a prevalent one. Having this discussion caused me to reflect on how it still is an issue. I appreciated the fact that it was stated that we need to talk about this, otherwise it will never get resolved. I have too often tried to avoid talking about it, but it is an issue that needs to be discussed in order for it to be resolved. 

Secondly, I enjoyed the conversation we had in class about how our identity can be tied to a place. Before coming to UVU I attended Snow College. I had a great experience there, and made some important discoveries regarding my personal identity. I have often associated myself with that place, because of how it impacted me. I feel that many individuals will identify themselves with a place. Take those that are in the workforce for example. They will often associate themselves with that place because of the value they have there. 

Adonica Limon touched on some extremely valuable points in her movie. The point that stood out to me was how she mentioned that we can all become successful in life despite our outcomes. It doesn’t matter where we came from, but it matters where we’re going to go. We can’t control the hand of cards that have placed  on us, but we can control the outcome of those cards.

Post 3

Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind. ” -Rudyard Kipling

The question of whether English only laws should be enforced brings many associated controversial arguments. I will elaborate on this question using my own personal insights and experiences, as well as update on my service learning project.

I personally don’t believe that English only laws should be enforced, because various languages brings a unique sense of cultural identity associated to it. I feel that it would personally add to the cultural value to the members who speak that language. It gives them a sense of pride. Another reason I feel that English only laws shouldn’t be enforced is because it would have a negative impact on global relationships. If various cultures felt that they couldn’t have their language associated with them it would cause a feeling distrust, which would in turn have an impact on imported and exported goods. If I personally were in a different country apart from the United States and I knew that there were going to be English only laws I would feel less willing to be of any type of service to the United States if the situation ever presented itself.

I am currently in the process of setting up my hours for my service learning. I have contacted the company that it is associated with to coordinate my schedule with theirs so I can go through their orientation. Mondays and Saturdays will be my best days to accomplish the necessary hours to complete the assignment.