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06 culture

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Culture What is culture? The culture is a summary of all material and spiritual values which are created by the humanity from the beginning until the present. It includes everything what people think, say, do, and make, faith, art, right, morality, language, science, habits and the other abilities which the man acquires as a member of society. The culture is learned and hand down from generation to generation through words, pictures, written sources or material sources. It depends on political and historical facts. The culture is a part of our everyday life – represented by characters of people (human as a part of culture), architectonic conception of building, by art which come up in time of the culture and also by people’s behaviour. acquire získat, osvojit si come uppřijít, přistoupit, jít nahoru overcomepřekonat Cultural differences Every culture has distinct characteristics that make it different from every other culture. Some differences are quite evident such as languages, religion, art, political organization etc. and the other are not so obvious. The diversity we face today is an unavoidable effect of inhabiting different parts of the world. Sometimes the landscape and many other factors concerning the nature can influence the way the local inhabitants evolve. For example, people living in a dessert would have different rituals, mainly concerning the water as the most valuable element, than some other folks living in mountains. You can feel some differences even as a tourist. These differences can be seen in streets, restaurants, at school, at work or for example by handshaking. For example: Physical contact- all cultures have different notions of social space, distance people or how to well come someone – if we may shake hands or kiss on face or how to wave farewell. Gestures Humour-each country has its own brand of humour (English dry humour) Politeness- greeting (in England and USA people should say: ”hallo, how do you do”), speaking about personal questions (Americans may find it easy to talk about themselves, but in some countries it can be impolite to ask about personal questions), behaviour for example in a restaurant or on cultural and social events (a wedding feast) distinctzřetelný, odlišný obvious jasný, samozřejmý valuablecenný, hodnotný unavoidablenevyhnutelný inhabitingobývající, bydlící concerningvztahující se Eating habits : Japanese people have a clean handkerchief with them for drying hands and to use as a napkin at the table – never for blowing the nose. All Japanese carry tissues. In Korea, when drinking wait for someone to pour your drink, don’t pour your own. Don’t pour a drink into a glass unless it’s empty. If someone holds the bottle over your glass, it’s a signal to drink up so that they can fill it. When holding your glass to be filled, use both hands. Make sure you’re wearing nice socks if you go to a Korea restaurant, because you may have to remove your shoes. In Taiwan, it’s bad luck to leave your chopsticks sticking vertically out of your bowl. Don’t point your chopsticks at people. When eating Thai food, use your spoon in your right hand to pick up food and your fork to push it on in your left hand. In Spain, dinner is eaten quite late – not until 9 or 10pm. It’s quite normal for people to share starters. People often hold a fork in the right hand, a piece of bread in the other. In Germany, it’s good manners for a man to enter a restaurant before a woman, and lead the way to a table. Glasses and cups aren’t refilled before the guest has finished the contents. It’s bad manners to place your hand in your lap while eating. In Italy, if you’re invited out to dinner, offer to pay at the end, but allow your host to insist on paying. Polish people say ‘thank you’ at the end of a meal (thanking the others for their company) Russian people don’t expect to eat at any particular time. You may be very hungry by the time anyone suggests going to a restaurant. In the USA, if you’re having steak, cut up some of it into bite-size pieces, then put down the knife and hold the fork in your right hand to move the food to your mouth. Use your fork(held in your right hand) to cut vegetables and fish. Something about gifts: In Japan if you receive a gift, take it with both hands and open it later in private. If you give a gift (such as something from your country), it must be wrapped beautifully. In Germany if you’re invited to someone’s house, buy flowers for the hostess. Remove the wrapping before handing them to her. In Cuba if you receive a gift, open it right away while the other person is watching. In Korea it is good manners to refuse a gift at first – people have to be persuaded to accept one. In Russia male and female visitors are often given a bunch of flowers to welcome them. In Taiwan give your gift with both hands. Don’t give clocks, towels, knives, letter- openers, scissors, or white, blue or black items. If someone gives you a gift, open it later in private. In the UK it’s not customary to give gifts. But if you go to someone’s home, take a bottle of wine or some flowers. CULTURE SHOCK Many travellers go through a period of euphoria and excitement, full with a thrill of being in a totally new and unusual environment. As this initial sense of "adventure" wears off, they become aware of the fact that old habits and routine ways are strange for them. They gradually (or suddenly) no longer feel comfortable. If this happens to you, you will feel like the outsider. Minor problems may quickly change into major crises, and you may find yourself depressed. You may be worried that it would result in losing all your familiar signs and symbols. You will experience a "Culture Shock". Such feelings are perfectly normal, so, knowing this, you will soon find yourself making changes (some small and perhaps not even noticeable) that will enable you to adapt to your new cultural environment. There is no easy way of dealing with culture shock. Simply recognizing its existen

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