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Intercultural Communication

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Intercultural Communication

Chapter One

Communication is the process through which information is passed from one party to another. This communication however takes place among diverse members of the society who practice different cultural and religious practices. The parties involved can therefore be termed to as being people from different social groups. It is through intercultural communication that different members of the society efficiently communicate with the sole aim of coming to an understanding. Intercultural communication can therefore be used in describing a wide aspect of the communication process. It encompasses the actual communication process and also the natural problems that are associated with the process. This problems associated with communication are often affected by the different backgrounds of the parties involved. This includes their religious, cultural, social and ethnical backgrounds. Cross cultural communication goes as further as trying to study and evaluate the behavioral characteristics of the parties involved in the communication. In this sense it tries to analyze how the members of the different cultures communicate, how they act and also their whole perception of the world and their environment. According to Jacob (2011), culture is among the major factors that determines how individuals from different backgrounds communicate. This includes their medium of communication, means of encoding the messages and interpretation of these messages. This is because first and foremost, different cultures communicate in different languages. Intercultural communication therefore tries to understand the different languages used by members of the different cultures. It also tries to adopt a standard language that can be used by the parties in order to come to an understanding. Members from different cultures also have different thought patters. In order for an effective intercultural communication, we need to understand the customs and traditions of the people from diverse backgrounds. Lastly, culture has an effect on the social attributes of an individual. People from different cultures relate with others differently. Their modes of greeting differ with differences in gender, sex and economical positions of the individuals. There is need therefore to efficiently understand the social attributes and behaviors of the different cultures in order to interculturaly communicate and relate well. The main importance of intercultural communication is that it forms the base for international business communications. It also plays major roles in the study of different cultures, linguistics, communication studies and social sciences. However, this intercultural communication is sometimes faced with problems and challenges. This challenges are often caused by the interpretation of the message. Parties from different cultures often interpret coded messages in their own values and beliefs. This may at times be different from the expectations of the party who coded the message. This leads to misunderstandings in the communication process. The Intercultural Communication Law (2016), therefore, advocates for learning and research as a major way of developing intercultural communication skills.

Chapter Two

With an aim of globalizing intercultural communication, the