Hi everyone! Thanks for tuning in for todays questions, “What determines whose histories and stories get told? How does history impact intercultural communication?”
To answer the first question, the people who determine whose histories depends on what the histories are about and who they’re special to. If it is a family history then it will be passed down from generation to generation. According to Martin and Nakayama, “Family histories occur at the same time as other histories but on a more personal level. The often are not written down but are passed along orally from one generation to the next” (Martin and Nakayama, 124).
Family history is different than national history as far as where we learn it and who decides what we learn. The government decides what we learn for our national history because it is taught in schools. According to Martin and Nakayama, “U.S. citizens are expected to recognize the great events an the so-called great people (mostly men of European ancestry) who were influential in the development of the nation. In classes, students learn about the revolutionary war, Thomas Paine […] and so on” (Martin and Nakayama, 125).
The histories are determined by the people teaching them, and the stories are told by them as well.
To answer the second question, history impacts intercultural communication because if two cultures go head to head and dislike each other, then they are likely to still dislike each other after the fight is over. An example is the Protestants and the Irish Catholics. They have been to war with each other and still to this day dislike each other.
According to Martin and Nakayama, there are three ways to understand intercultural communication, “One way to understand specific relationships between communication and history is to examine the attitudes and notions that individuals bring to an interaction; these are the antecedents of contact. A second way is to look at the specific conditions of the interaction and the role that history plays in these contexts. Finally, we can examine how various histories are negotiated in intercultural interaction, apply a dialectical perspective to these different histories” (Martin and Nakayama, 146).
I believe that looking into how these three points will help both cultures understand each other and learn how to coexist in peace and happiness.
In history, it seems that it is sometimes tough to coexist with other cultures that you are not accustom to. I believe that a cultural difference, moral or value difference, and religious differences are a key ingredient to different cultures not getting along. If these cultures would learn how to communicate better then they would have an easier time understanding each other. The contact hypothesis states that, “the notion that better communication between groups of people is facilitated simply by bringing them together and allowing them to intact” (Martin and Nakayama, 149).
In conclusion, if cultures were to communicate more efficiently they would have a better history and a better future. Also, there are many different people who determine histories and there are many different types of histories but each one is decided by a different group or person.