Adapting Communication to Cultures and Social Communities

Chapter 8:
Adapting Communication to
Cultures and Social Communities
Megan Gratzer
Morgan Oglesby
Erin Flowers
Discussion Questions
Is it more important for society
to be ordered or to provide
personal freedom to its
Discussion Questions
Does winning a medal or honor
reflect more on the receiving
individual or the person’s
Discussion Questions
What are some key
characteristics of our society?
 Definition: A way of life- a system of ideas, values,
customs, and language that is passed from one
generation to the next
 It’s a part of everything we do, feel, and believe
 Interconnected parts affect whole
 No change is isolated from overall system
How Communication Relates to
We learn culture through communication
Communication expresses, sustains, and alters culture
Shapes how you communicate
We acquire attitude as we interact with others, then
reflect cultural teachings in the way we communicate
Learning Culture
Begins at Birth
Learn both Verbal & Nonverbal
Exposed to Mass Communication to learn Language
We both consciously and unconsciously internalize
our culture
 People from different cultures communicate
Individualism in Culture
 We can distinguish cultures by level of individualism
 Communication reflects, expresses individualistic or
collective values
 2 types of Societies
 individualistic – Low-context communication
 Collective- High-context communication
Social Groups
 Everyone belongs multiple social groups and
minimum of one culture
 Each identification we hold affects how we
 Most Societies have dominant mainstream way of life
 Social Community: group of people who live in
dominant culture, but belong to different social
 Standpoint Theory
Effects of Communication on Culture
 Communication sustains culture, perpetuates values
 Communication is a source of cultural change
Adapting Communication to Diversity
of Culture
Engage in Person-Centered Communication
Respect others feelings and Ideas
Resist Ethnocentric Bias
Recognize adapting to cultural diversity is a process
Resistance – rejection of beliefs
Assimilation – give up ways, adapt to dominant culture
Tolerance – acceptance of differences
Understanding – No cultural teachings are best or right
Respect – No longer judge, respect
Participation – Incorporate values and practices
Class Activity
Chapter summarized from information found in:
Wood, Julia T. (2014). Communication Mosaics: An Introduction to the
Field of Communication. 7th Edition. Boston, MA: Wadsworth.
These student lecture notes provide a brief summary of Wood’s
discussion on verbal communication (chapter 4) while providing
additional commentary and examples. The information in this
slideshow is based on the work (content and organization) of Wood