My Experience with Culture Shock Essay

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Cross culture difference(India-Canada)

It is always been a debatable issue how cross-culture affects our daily life and what are the differences and similarities between the cultures. Today I will discuss the cross cultural differences between India and Canada. And the cross-culture shock I have experienced.

To begin with, every country has its own intermixed culture. However, India is a diverse country (many cultures are adopted in India). Firstly, there are many languages spoken in India as compared to Canada i.e. India- (22 languages), Canada-(2 languages) {as per researchers}. So, for me, it is a drastic cultural difference between both countries (India and Canada).

Secondly, the cultural costumes are different, festival celebrations are different. As in India, there are dramatic sorts of costumes worn {salwar kameez, churidar, lehenga choli(skirt and blouse), dhoti, panache or lungi, sherwani, etc.}.However, In Canada, there are different sorts of costumes worn by people{parkas, long johns, ear muffs, scarves, gloves, mittens, tuques (woolen caps), various jackets made of linen and leather, leggings, Ojibwa shirts, trousers, and moccasins, etc.}.In India, many festivals are celebrated by the dwellers{Diwali, Holi, Christmas, Dussehra, Durga puja, Janmashtami, Ganesh Chaturthi, Eid-Ul-Fitr, Rakshabandhan, etc.} and in Canada the festivals which are celebrated by people are{Montreal Jazz Festival, Winterlude, Celebration Of Light, The Ex, Pride Toronto, Folklorama, Just For Laughs, K-Days, The Calgary Stampede, Canada Day Celebrations, etc.}In Canada there are fewer festivals which are celebrated in comparison to India.

Thirdly, India is home to at least nine recognized religions. The major religions practiced in India are {Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Sikhism, Buddhism Jainism, etc.}.In Canada, there are fewer religions {Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, etc.}.

Fourthly, In India, the most popular sports are {Cricket, badminton, football, shooting, wrestling, boxing, tennis, squash, weightlifting, gymnastics, athletics, table tennis, basketball, volleyball, cycling, chess, kho-kho, kite-fighting, leg Cricket, polo, snooker, gillidanda, etc.}. However, In Canada the most popular sports are {Ice hockey, lacrosse, gridiron football, soccer, basketball, curling, baseball, etc.}.

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Fifthly, There are many different rules and regulations which are been followed by the Indian and Canadian governments. In India, many people are never caught after breaking the rules. However, in Canada, there are very few rare cases in which the rule breaker may not be caught. Moreover, in India, Most of the crime cases are pending. However, in Canada, the results of the crime cases are transparent.

Sixthly, The Cultural History of India and Canada is very different. English people ruled for over 200 years in India and Canada was an independent country. In Indian cultural studies, we have to read all about the wars, records, acts, famous personalities, the ruling party, rulers, historic moments, etc. In Canadian cultural studies, we have to learn all about the history of Canadian dwellers, previous wars, traditions, records,etc.

Seventhly, The behavior of city dwellers is different if compared. In India, most people react very angrily to many normal things. However, In Canada, most people handle all sorts of situations with love and care. In India, the people nearby will not interact easily with the newly met person. However, in Canada, the dwellers prefer to make the passing stranger feel good and smile on his/her face.

Moreover, As everyone entering a different country experiences cross-culture shock The tourist’s glamour may not be the resident’s reality. It is common for people to suffer from some form of culture shock after arriving in a foreign setting. This normal reaction to a new environment occurs while you are outside of your comfort zone. When adapting to a foreign culture, you could experience a range of emotions from euphoria to yearning for home. Culture shock is a term used to describe what people experience when they are overwhelmed by unfamiliar surroundings and conditions, resulting in a sense of isolation.

Stages of culture shock

As an exchange student, you may experience some or all of the following stages of culture shock:

    1. Initial Anxiety: Before departing, is common for exchange students to feel anxious about their upcoming journey. You may even question your decision to go on exchange.
    2. Initial Elation: At this stage, you have just arrived in the new country and are observing the culture through a tourist’s idealistic eyes. Everything is fantastic! And so much fun! This is also referred to as “the honeymoon period”. In this phase, you are positive and curious. You are looking forward to new adventures with anticipation, and you may even idealize the host culture.
    3. Initial Culture Shock: Irritability and hostility are both symptoms of culture shock. It is at this stage that it is important to realize that there is a fine line between saying that people do things differently and that they stupidly do things. It’s also common to blame the new culture for one’s frustrations and emotions, rather than the process of acculturation. Mobility – A World of Opportunities
    4. Initial Adaptation: Next, there will be a period of acceptance, during which you gradually adapt to the new culture and no longer nurture feelings of anxiety or resentment. During this adjustment, you will begin to feel more comfortable and develop a balanced, objective view of your experiences. However, the frustration may return, and you may experience feelings of sadness again.
    5. Acceptance of Host Culture: Now you will begin to integrate your host culture into your everyday life. During this phase, you may develop a sense of belonging to your host culture or even a soft spot for certain customs.
    6. Return Anxiety: This phase is similar to the initial anxiety period and occurs before you return to your home country. You may feel anxious about leaving your new community and readjusting to your life in Canada. At the same time, you will also feel a sense of relief and accomplishment after having completed your stay abroad.
    7. Reverse Culture Shock: Many students overlook reverse culture shock. After having assimilated the host country’s culture, it may be challenging for you to return home; you may have to overcome cultural differences for a second time. Moreover, reverse culture shock can be more intense because is often unexpected. You may require time to settle back into a routine and to readjust to life in Canada.
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