Cultural Differences Between Chinese and Westerners: Part 1
During the last century, contact between Chinese and Westerners was relatively limited, and both people knew little about the other. Now we have more opportunities than ever for exchange. With that, however, comes a need for greater understanding of cultural differences. Today I’d like to talk about some of these with you.
Greetings are an important part of every language in the world. However, people in China and the West greet people in very different ways. Because of this, care needs to be taken to avoid causing offence or misunderstandings.
I had no idea about this when I first arrived in Hong Kong. I remember going to a bank, and the employee there asking me if I had had my lunch. You can imagine my surprise; in Britain, we would take such a question as an indirect invitation to eat together. Later at school I was even more surprised when my teacher asked me the same question.
当我第一次到香港的时候，我并不了解这个。还记得有一次我去银行，那里的工作人员问我吃过午餐了没。你应该能想象到我有多惊讶；在英国，我们会把这种提问理解成是在间接地邀请一个人吃饭。后来在学校，当我的老师也问了同样的问题时，我就更醉了。 Read more »