Sunday, October 25, 2015

Conflict Management when Experiencing Culture Shock


                Being an outsourced employees isn’t easy, especially to faced problem cultures like striking differences in culture. This problem has been experienced by Todd (Outsorced, 2006), an outsorced employees which is sent to India from America. India and America is a country that has a very significant cultural differences. India is a country that has high context cultural while America has low context cultural. In this movie, Todd had very big cultural shock. On the first time he arrived to India (on the airplane), he met many significant different thing. He had to realize that India and America isn’t same place. But in this case, he still negotiated his cultural (American Culture) with Indian culture. He know that everything was different, but he still want same thing (which is he got that in America) in his life when he stayed in India.

                But, after all, after experienced many things, met a lot of people, and chat with many people he had to adapted with Indian culture. Because people in India can’t followed his culture. Him, who should did it, to follow the culture in India and adapting. See how Todd tried to adapt to the environment in India, I would like to say that his experienced (as an outsourcing on that film) can be explained by face negotiation theory. The face negotiation theory explains how cultural difference in people influence in managing conflicts. The theory was formulated by Stella Ting-Toomey, professor of human communication at California State University. Toomey described that difference in handling the conflicts can be a part of maintaing a ‘face’ in the society. (http://communicationtheory.org/face-negotiation-theory/).
                Overall, this film describes the culture shock experienced by someone who has a very different culture. The only way to survive in a place that is isolated (for him) is to learn the culture of the place and adapt. This is done by Todd. Although previously it was he who "force" people in India to understand that he is an American. I will explain some of the scenes in which Todd then learn to manage conflict within him caused by the culture. As explained previously, conflict management in a person can be explained through face negotiation theory.
                The film as a whole can be analyzed through face negotiation theory. But I will only show four scenes only. The first scene is when Todd ate meal for the first time in India. He never learn about culture in India, including how to eat. He still brought his habit of eating with the left-handed and put back the food he had eaten at the plate. Well, Indian people try to remind that "in India do not like that". And Todd was trying to understand it and get rid of the dominance of culture.  It can be said, Todd finally succumbing to follow what is usually done by Indians and left what he used to do in America. The second scenes is when Todd wants to defecate but there was no toilet commonly he used in America. So he had to use “toilet-that-indian-used-to”.
                 This is simple thing but effect him so much. This is just about “defecate”. But culture show that there are so many different things in America and India which is had to be faced by Todd, including how to do in toilet. The third scene is when he taught his local employees in India. He introduced the "how Americans talk" and asked workers to adapt it when talking to Americans. This is done so that the workers in India are able to communicate with the Americans. The last scene of the most I remember is when the holy day held. The celebration of holy day is the feast of the Hindus in India. By the time that day lasted people are not allowed to use nice clothes. The celebration itself is done with "color war". Todd wasn’t learned about that before. Initially, Todd felt mistreated. But after knowing the purpose of the celebration instead he took to have fun with other Indians.
                I would like to say, from this film, Todd get a culture shock as previously never learn about the culture in India. Ignorance of India made him a must to experience the beat of the culture is so strong. Moreover, the cultural context between India and America is vastly different. In addition, the ignorance whic is what makes him still show some culture "Americans" are strange in India. Although ultimately Todd still able to adapt and even fall in love with an Indian woman.

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