Human interaction is based on communication, which is the process by which people exchange their thoughts and emotions (Beck, Bennett, and Wall, 2013). There are numerous ways to communicate, including through media outlets or social media platforms like Facebook. Contrarily, culture can be characterized as a person’s way of life (Gruenert, 2015). Because of several causes, this concept implies that culture is the echo while human communication is the voice. For instance, exactly like voice, communication is contextual, self-reflective, irreversible, and has a result. Culture, on the other hand, is built on symbols and may be picked up like an echo. Additionally, echo is a reflection of the voice; the same way culture is a reflection of communication (Samovar, Porter, McDaniel, & Roy, 2017).
Communication is contextual, which means it does not occur in a vacuum. Therefore, it means that the setting and environment where a person is will help others to determine the words and actions being produced and the meanings that are given to the meanings of symbols received. In the same way, the context and environment affect the voice since people in particular places tend to use slangs that suit them. Additionally, communication is irreversible; once a person does something like showing a gesture, the action cannot be undone, the voice is the same way, once you utter a single word or produce a sound you cannot take it back (Samovar et al., 2017). Communication is self-reflective, what you say or show others shows how you feel about them; the voice is like that also. People use voice to air out their views or emotions. Furthermore, communication has a consequence; they will receive a response or feedback, this occurs when you voice something to others, they will always respond. Lastly one of the major forms of communication is by talking which is giving out your views. On the other hand, culture is learned, this means that the habits that are transmitted from one generation to the next have to be internalized by members of the same cultures. Such habits usually take time to be internalized (Samovar et al., 2017).
The topic relates to personal experiences because I usually communicate with different people who are around me for example friends, teachers, and family on a daily basis. The communication is usually two way as there is feedback or response between us. Additionally, I have a culture, just like anyone else. Additionally, this is the same case with current events happening in the country as many people communicate with others in their daily lives. Furthermore, people of different cultures live together in towns or cities, and we usually meet them on a regular basis hence the need for intercultural communication. Therefore, this shows that the topic reflects personal experiences, current events and something that I am familiar with.
The topic is important because it equips the reader with intercultural communication skills. The latter are those skills that are needed to facilitate communication or sharing of information between people from other cultures and social groups. Additionally, the topic helps the reader realize that even though language skills are an essential component in intercultural communication, they are not the only requirement. Lastly, the topic helps the reader understand that different cultures have different social mores, standards, thought patterns, and customs. Therefore, it makes the reader more willing to accept the differences and hence adapt to them.
I will incorporate this knowledge to a cultural situation that I am in the following ways. First, I would adapt my behavior, and I would not always expect other people to change to me which includes not being offended when someone does something to me that I find it difficult to accept. I do not have to agree with it, but I will try to politely explain why I find it difficult instead of just getting angry at someone.
Secondly, since I usually interact with people of different cultures and sometimes they speak a different language than mine, I would demonstrate my willingness to meet others halfway by learning a few phrases in their language. Some phrases like “good evening” or other types of greetings usually go a long way.
Thirdly, I would use this knowledge to check my understanding and that of other people. The best way to avoid misunderstanding is by listening carefully and asking questions where necessary. Additionally, I will avoid prejudice when speaking to people who belong to different cultures.
Conclusively, the topic had such a meaning because communication is the voice and culture the echo. This is because culture and echo are a reflection of both communication and the voice. Additionally, the topic relates to something that we are familiar with because human beings communicate daily through various ways and they do so with people of different culture. The topic is important to intercultural communication as it equips the reader with knowledge and skills that can be used when interacting with people from different cultures.
Beck, A., Bennett, P., and Wall, P. (2013). Communication studies: the essential resource. New York: Routledge.
Gruenert, S., and Whitaker, T. (2015). School culture rewired: How to define, assess, and
transform it. Alexandria, VA: ASCD
Samovar, L. A., Porter, R. E., McDaniel, E. R., & Roy, C. S. (2017). Communication and Culture: The voice and the Echo. In Communication between cultures (9th Ed.). Boston, MA: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning, pp. 25-67.