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Human life in society is impossible without the existence of certain rules, which constitute a substantial part of their lifestyle. In accordance with the rules, each person has his or her own idea of ??a bad and good behavior. Hence, in every culture, there is a system of permissions and prohibitions that prescribe how a person is obliged to behave in a given situation or prohibit certain actions. Each culture has a number of its features that are relevant to the cultural norms, traditions and rules in various areas of human life: professional, friendly, family, etc. In other words, communication between people has various forms and is subject to cultural norms. Cultural norms are certain patterns and rules of behavior, action and cognition. Cultural norms are of particular importance for the existence of any society, regardless of its type.
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Cultural norms are connected with cultural values, which can be seen as as conceptions of the desirable that guide the way social actors (e.g. organizational leaders, policy-makers, individual persons) select actions, evaluate people and events, and explain their actions and evaluations. Cultural norms and values regulate the functioning of society, determining its specific logic and coherence. The rules of etiquette can also be considered as cultural norms, because they regulate the interaction between people. It means that the treatment of a handshake, tactility as well as the features of the distance between the interlocutors are also determined by cultural norms, since each culture based on its vision of what behavior is permissible argues different standards of communication and interaction between people.
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The Features of Cultural Communication
I belong to Hispanic-Cuban cultural ancestry. My people is characterized by temperament, openness, and sincerity. It is the main reason that we like to discuss our thoughts, ideas, and actions with other people, including relatives. For us it is very important that in the process of communicating with other people we can hear new opinions and understand whether our thoughts and actions are correct and justified. In addition, the people belonging to my culture express everything in words. It may be relevant to almost any field. You can come to visit a friend and meet there new people, who immediately begin talking about their lives, sharing their problems and asking for someone’s advice. We do not seek to hide our thoughts, but on the contrary, we are trying to express them openly. Openness and spontaneity are the distinctive characteristics of our people. They are accompanied by a high degree of temperament. It leads to the fact that we can talk about a lot of different topics, including child care and education, household, as well as politics, religion, economy.
My people also have a cheerful character, musicality, and love for entertainment and parties. Considering taboos in my culture, I can say that our modern culture does not have any strict taboos. Certainly, if a person demonstrates a rude behavior insulting other people, it is considered a breach of etiquette. Such a person is seen from an extremely negative standpoint. A taboo as a phenomenon, which appears in the form of rigid rules of a social and family life, is not present in our contemporary culture. Everyone has the right to freedom of choice, including the right to choose a life partner, type of religion, etc. There may be a taboo in my culture in individual cases, characterizing individual relationships between people, including family. For example, I know a married couple where the husband is the head of the family, while the wife’s task focuses on the birth and upbringing of children. This family is an example of a patriarchal family, although I believe that the feature of a family is determined not only by cultural, but also individual peculiarities of relations between a husband and a wife. A patriarchal family defines a dominant role of a man in a family. All other family members, including a wife, should obey the orders and instructions of the head of the family. In other words, patriarchy is a social system in which the role of the male as the primary authority figure is central to social organization, and where fathers hold authority over women, children, and property However, regardless of the type of family relations, respect for older family members (especially for grandparents) is mandatory. We are very respectful to the older generation. This social norm exists for a long time in our culture. In general, we strive to be respectful to everything that has to do with our culture, because all this characterizes the unique history of our cultural heritage.
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Openness and friendliness of my people determines the fact that unlike the Americans, we are more inclined to use tactile perceptions in relations with other people. Certainly, in relationships with our family members and friends, we show more emotions, also using touches. When it comes to communicating with strangers, we do not allow ourselves excessively using a close contact preferring the distance between us and another person. However, the way we treat strangers cannot be called a cold attitude, since our society is not characterized as a low-touch society. We compensate the lack of tactile touches by using facial expressions and gestures. Their task is to make it clear whether communication will be continued. With regard to relations with the opposite sex, they depend on the personal traits of the interlocutors. If a man and a woman are talking to each other and the young man realizes that the girl does not like a too close contact, he does not allow himself too much. In this case, the basic idea is that our culture does not impose strict limitations on the scope and process of communication. Therefore, the type and characteristics of the interaction can be determined individually, depending on the preference of the interlocutors.
In general, an eye contact even with strangers is also determined by the demonstration of openness and friendly attitude. Nevertheless, if someone sees that his/her interlocutor is feeling uncomfortable within such communication style, he/she tries to reduce the amount of the eye contact. As I have previously mentioned, gestures and facial expressions are an integral part of our culture. With their help, we can convey our psychological state and report that either we have any problems or everything is fine and we are ready to enjoy life. We are not ashamed of our emotions and facial expressions, as for us, they act as emotional discharge. We seem to give our energy to the outside world, and this makes us even happier. We do not have any special way of greeting other people, since everyone has the right to choose the way of greeting. It may be a handshake or a nod, depending on the situation. As for the temporal aspect in your culture, it seems to me that my culture is focused primarily on the past and present. We greatly value past since we see it as created by our ancestors , who have invested in it all much of their energy, efforts, and talent. On the other hand, present time also has a special meaning for us, since for us enjoying the present day is a demonstration of the fact that life is a celebration of joy and fun. For this reason, we have a lot of holidays, accompanied by lively music and singing. Our attitude towards a life determines the fact that we try to take care of our health. The basic idea is that only a person who has a healthy is able to enjoy life giving joy not only to him/herself, but also to others. Given our love of life it becomes clear why we want to live as much as possible and as best as possible. I know many of my compatriots who control what they eat and drink as well as the amount of physical activity and a combination of sleep and wakefulness.
Temperament, sociability, cheerfulness and vitality of our people is reflected in how we welcome others as well as the features of interpersonal communication, including the intensity of the use of facial expressions and gestures. Our culture is based on the idea that everyone has the right to express his/her emotions, so facial expressions and gestures play an important role in communication. Unlike Americans, when communicating with strangers, we tend to show more openness and cordiality. The features of our communication with others are defined by our cultural patterns, in which manifestations of feelings and emotions play an important role. On the other hand, one cannot argue that when communicating , we seek to impose our views to an interlocutor. Rather, it depends on the individual features of the interlocutors. Despite the deep respect for our culture, we are also able to adapt to the current trends in culture, which determines the absence of strict taboos and prohibitions in culture. However, the basic requirement particularly in the field of family is respect for the older generation.