Inter-Cultural Interview Essay
: Living in the United States was somewhat different from how was in my country of origin. I found numerous differences, although there were also some similarities. For one, the weather here is definitely colder than in my country. In addition to this, the people in the United States are not overpopulated, nor are the houses crowded. At some point, a sense of independence was also inculcated in my mind. I learned how to look after myself while being appreciative of my roots. Interviewer: From what country are you from? Interviewee: I am from the Philippines, and so is my whole family. We moved here when I was six years old.
Interviewer: Can you tell me something about the culture that you grew up in? Interviewee: I grew up in a culture that gave much importance to family and respect for one another. Furthermore, it was important to be close knit with each other. For every problem faced by each member of our family, we were all there to show some love and support. Each celebration was attended by almost all the members of the family. Non-attendance was inexcusable, with each one sharing their own sentiments. Interviewer: How was your childhood like knowing that your race was different from that of your peers?
Interviewee: Honestly, I did not have difficulty adjusting. I grew up like any other individual, and I was able to adapt the environment I was living in. When I moved to the United States, my parents introduced to us a new world that we were unaware off. I must say that not much difficulty was experienced because we also spoke English at home. In addition to this, my friends never took my race against me. At some point, I remember growing up to the fact that they were asking about some important things about my culture. Interviewer: How was your relationship with your family?
Interviewee: As I mentioned earlier, I grew up in a closely knit family. I was raised to respect the needs of my elders and always take into consideration the feelings of others. In so doing, I also grew up knowing that talking negatively of family members was wrong, and would be accounted for such actions. Furthermore, Sundays were often spent with family members, and dinner was the most important meal in the family. Regardless of how busy we may be, we had to eat dinner all together. This was our chance to talk about what happened with us all throughout the day.
In addition to this, it was our belief that we would take care of the elderly members of the family, and those who have fallen ill. Sending them off to convalescent homes was not an option for us, for it was our obligation as children to care for our parents. Interviewer: Did you have any difficulty with religion? If yes, how did you deal with it? Interviewee: I must say that I did not have difficulty with religion. Since my family was close, I was opened to the Roman Catholic norms. We even have religious idols strategically positioned in the different parts of the house as a sign of respect for the religion.
Furthermore, this did not even become a reason for me to neither doubt myself nor be affected in any manner. Interviewer: What do you think is the greatest factor that differentiates you from your peers? Interviewee: In terms of intellectual capacity, I must say that there is not much difference. We are all given the same quality and quantity of education in school. However, we only differ from the different perceptions formed and inculcated in our minds when we were younger. One difference that I see with others is the fact that I always had to take the feelings and thoughts of my parents in consideration.
As part of the Filipino culture, we were not allowed to answer our parents nor disrespect them in any manner. This was in contrast to how other parents were treated by their children. Whenever we disrespect our parents or elders, we were reprimanded and given some punishments. Interviewer: In terms of language, did you feel at any point that there was a barrier? Interviewee: No. I did not feel that any barrier was formed in any part of my life. However, I felt advantageous for I was also fluent in my family’s language, which was Filipino. In some manner, I felt at home and at ease with my family with the use of the language.
In addition to this, the act itself was a way for us to live our cultural heritage despite the fact that we were not in the Philippines. Furthermore, I grew up in the United States, making me fluent in English as well. It is sometimes funny to think about how others would become impressed with the way I can speak two languages fluently. Interviewer: When dealing with peers, did you feel at some point that you were different from everyone else? Interviewee: No, I did not feel different. Regardless of our differences in belief, I believe that we were all geared towards the betterment of society.
We were given the same kind of information and were taught equally in school. As I mentioned earlier, we all have our differences, and I believe that my peers feel the same way too. Although we have the same quality and quantity of education, we also have to take into consideration the culture and tradition of each. There are certain things they do that would catch our attention and may look different in our eyes. However, these are the certain things in life that we have to take into consideration. Also, I believe that being different from others is just a state of mind.
We all make our own lives, and so it is up to us on how we could make things work. Interviewer: What do you think is one of the greatest influences your culture had on the way you deal with your life and peers? Interviewee: My culture has allowed me to appreciate life better. Also, I am able to appreciate the people who have played an important part in my life. I was able to inculcate in my thoughts and actions the different lessons brought about by my culture and family members. Most importantly, I was able to imbibe self respect and dignity in everything that I do.
Before I indulge in something, I try to ponder on and analyze things. There are certain things that I do in life that I attribute to the beliefs I grew up with. These would often be my guide before I make decisions. Interviewer: Looking back at your life, do you find it difficult to adjust to the American culture and way of life? Interviewee: I believe that living in the United States did not come as a difficulty from my end. For the most part, I was able to learn more about myself and others. Furthermore, I was able to be the individual I am now because of the mixture of cultures I grew up in.
In my own opinion, I believe that the American way of life is one of the most misunderstood cultures. Others would say that American culture was focused on the individuality of people. However, what others do not see is the great deal of competence and individuality inculcated in the perceptions of many. Through independence and competence, individuals are able to hone themselves and become someone in society. It is my perception that these things are the ones that matter most when trying to make it big in society. We are all bound by the difficulties in life, however it is also up to us on how we can change things.
No matter who we are and what we do, we should always give credit to our roots and cultural heritage. Name of Student Course Name of Professor Date Intel-cultural Interview: A Reaction Culture has been attributed to the different challenges experienced by people. For many, culture became an important part in the shaping of one’s perception. I was given the opportunity to find out and understand more about other cultures through this interview. Before the interview took place, I had numerous questions in mind. I wanted to know how other people would adapt to the American way of life.
For the most part, I wanted to see if there were differences with my own perceptions, and if there were also similarities. I wanted to be enlightened with the numerous ideas that flowed in my head. The questions I asked my classmate opened new ideas for me. With the difficulties that came my way, I was able to appreciate more the importance of the other cultures. STATE NAME was one of the few people in school that I admired the most. Through this interview, I was able to learn more about him/her and the kind of life he/she was accustomed to. I admired STATE NAME for her/his honesty and for being open minded.
He/she did not limit the answers to a word or two. Instead, I was given a glimpse of how his/her life was while growing up in a foreign country. In so doing, I was also given the opportunity to understand the difficulties and trials felt all these years. However, I also saw the great deal of importance their culture gave towards dealing with family and respect for the elderly. At this point, I felt a certain deal of admiration for him/her. STATE NAME was a concrete example of how an individual could embrace two different cultures and personify them.
Respect for the elderly has always been inculcated in all of our minds. However, I was able to see it as a reality when STATE NAME gave me specifics during the interview. STATE NAME’S answers were all based on his/her experiences in life, and were considered valid. I was surprised at how much credit he/she gave towards the contribution his/her family had on who he/she is today. In so doing, I also saw how unaffected he/she is with language barriers. Through STATE NAME’s experiences, language barriers may be avoided if people just became open minded.
In so doing, STATE NAME’s mirrored the kind of culture Filipinos showed. By practicing the culture of their origin, they were able to help keep their race alive. Being away from their country of origin did not come as a hindrance for them to forget their heritage. Instead, their bonds as a family and as Filipinos were strengthened further by actions and attitude towards others. I must say that I have learned so much from this interview. In my own little way, I was able to appreciate and give much credit to my roots and the different accomplishments I had in my own life.
At the same time I saw how much we were alike. Regardless of our differences in belief and in culture, there were certain things that bound us together. We were both open to the fact that we would not be who we are today if not for the mixture of culture we have. For the most part, we both believed that living outside of our country of origin would not come as a hindrance for us to reach our goals. Instead, it would help us to become better people; making our families and our country proud. Life is indeed full of challenges—and it is up to us on how we could actually make things work and make a difference.
University/College: University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 25 September 2016
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