Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Week 3

Blog Assignment
For my blog this week, I thought about the cultural diversity I see in my colleagues at school, in my neighborhood, workplace, and within your family. I considered all  of the aspects that make up culture, including race, religion, political affiliation, sexual orientation, varying abilities, and ect. After careful self reflecting, I have to admit that I do communicate differently with my colleagues who are close in age, and of the same race; in turn I have noticed that my colleagues of the same race often speak to me differently when compared to their counterparts of another race. In addition, I have noticed that when I am at work or in a public setting and a group of people are present, I tend to gravitate towards people that “look” like me because there is an illusion of undisclosed comfort because I assume I can relate to them on some level. However, I have found that this form of comfort can prevent me from meeting and or interacting with a group of people that I may have a lot in common with.
On a personal note, I have cousins and intimate relationships with people who are biracial Black/White, Latino/Black, American/Jamaican, or American/Trinidadian and I have noticed that I do try to be more sensitive to the cultural differences between each group. For instance, my son’s father is part Trinidadian and I am African American (so my son shares both cultures) and my family is from the south and he makes comments about eating “fried chicken” which is “funny” to me because I don’t eat fried chicken that is just a stereotype that sometimes effects my communication with him. I find it interesting that one of my uncles tend to talk about all races and groups of people, but he often struggles with being himself when his granddaughter/ my cousin is present because he doesn’t want to offend her by making one of his ignorant comments because she is Black/White.

Based on what I have learned this week, I have learned of the importance of   being "other-oriented, by following the “Platinum Rule” to help me communicate more effectively with people on a professional and personal level. I have also learned that when interacting with people on a professional and personal level, I need to make sure my body language matches my words. I also learned that I need to remain neutral or unbiased when interacting with the diverse group of families/students and colleagues I work with so that I am more effective in my teaching/facilitating lessons.

O'Hair, D., & Wiemann, M. (2009). Real communication an introduction. Boston MA: Bedford's St. Martin’ s.



  1. Nicky,
    I understand your uncle's change in communication styles when talking to various races within the family. In my family, I have a very prejudice relative. She speaks hatefully of many races, mostly out of a hatred developed during World War II. However, when she speaks to my ten year old grandson, she changes her wording to be less hateful, commenting instead on the challenges of different languages.
    Mary L.

  2. Nick, I do believe it is important to speak to other cultural groups based upon their cultural. We can't assume that it is o.k to address certain cultural groups the same as our own cultural.Thanks for sharing....

  3. Nicky,

    Thanks for reminding everyone to have cultural sensitivity when communicating. There are many stereotypic jokes in our society still today. Most people who use these types of jokes do not mean it in a discriminating manner; however it still hurts and should not be said. Every individual has their own likes, habits, and life desires. On a side note, I am Caucasian, from the South and love Fried Chicken because I was raised on it. I make Oven Fried Chicken today because we know about health, but I still love it!

  4. Nicky,
    I was intrigued by your mention of your uncle. I was wondering about his comments about other races contrasting with his treatment of his granddaughter. I guess you are trying to say nicely that he makes comments in her absence that he would feel uncomfortable repeating in her presence. Do you fear that he will slip one day?

  5. The platinum rule is a very useful tool when communicating with people that have diverse cultures. It ensures that we treat all cultures as they want to be treated and not how we think they should be treated.