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Impact Of Cultural On Communication Essay

1464 words - 6 pages

Culture is not something that you carry in your DNA. It is not about genetics, it is about being born into a society with certain cultural characteristics. From the moment that you are born, you start learning about culture throughout the course of your life. You gain knowledge of culture from your parents, grandparents, friends, teachers in school and so on. Cultural characteristics refer to the elements that define individuals. Some of these characteristics consist of beliefs, values, norms and social practices. In the next paragraphs you will find a better definition of each cultural characteristic and how they influence verbal and non-verbal communication.

Belief is the idea ...view middle of the document...

There is known to be two different types of social practices, a formal and an informal. The formal social practices consist of activities or rituals of a culture that are not practiced every day. These formal social practices exist in every culture but they are manifested in different ways. The informal social practices consist in the daily habitual tasks. It could be from the way individuals dress, how they eat, simply their habits.

All these cultural characteristics can be affected by communication styles and patterns. Individuals will communicate among members of the same culture or outsiders depending on their cultural characteristics. When it comes to these, each culture has their own and outsiders need to be careful. There are two existent communication styles, verbal and non-verbal communication. Verbal communication refers mostly to the spoken direct word. How the spoken word sounds, written communication, the grammar, the diverse languages and dialects, accents, among others. Non-verbal communication consists of all the aspects of communication that do not involve words. This can be body language, eye contact, facial expressions, touch, time, etc. Since there are so many different cultures, I will select one country from four different continents to analyze different cultural characteristics and how these influence verbal and non-verbal communication.

Spain is located is the European continent. When it comes to religion, most of Spain’s population believes in Christianity. There is a percent of people who practice other religions but not the majority. Since earlier years the Roman Catholicism has influenced them. Spaniards believe in the trinity of the Father, which in other words is God, in the son who is Christ and the Holy Spirit. The combination of these three turns into one God Almighty. Technically, they only believe that if such thing as the evolution existed it was under the power, choice and control of the father, God. Spaniard’s beliefs influence their verbal and non-verbal communication. Because of their strong beliefs, they would encounter a lot of taboos that would prohibit them of communicating. A great example of this is an encounter between someone very religious and a homosexual person. I have witnessed in a restaurant a religious family having a homosexual server, where they have ignored the person completely and asked for another server. Their strong religious beliefs have such an impact that they are even unable to communicate, not even in a non-verbal way because they would not dare to even make eye contact.

Moving on to Argentina located in South America. I will explain one of their cultural values. Argentinians give a lot of importance and focus to building relationships. They are very family-oriented which positions them between been individualistic and collectivist at times. Even though they family and relationships are valuable, they also pursue their goals as individuals. Keep in mind that...

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