No. 46  Mar. 2020




本期範文賞析(SPOTLIGHT),由寫作中心江介維老師撰寫,介紹跨文化溝通的起源及發展,進而引用學生及自身的例子分享,闡述學習跨文化溝通的重要性。人員專訪(STAR OF THE MONTH)採訪蘇虹菱老師,分享她收藏文具的嗜好,細數文具帶來的簡單美好。讀者園地(PENNY FOR YOUR THOUGHTS)節錄李振清教授去年年底在臺大的演講,以跨文化與世代溝通為題,探討其中所面臨的挑戰與應對策略。

"In every age 'the good old days' were a myth. No one ever thought they were good at the time. For every age has consisted of crises that seemed intolerable to the people who lived through them."


by Brooks Atkinson (1951)




(江介維老師 撰文) Jie-Wei Jiang, Editor of AWEC Newsletter, NTU)

Intercultural Communication: Origin, Development, and Cases
Around 50 years ago, the term "global village" was coined and envisioned by Marshall McLuhan (1967) in a world where people began to grow aware of how their lives and daily events were connected together through technology. With the continuing progress of technology, the way people interact with one another, especially those across genders, races and nationalities, is sure to constantly evolve in various manners.
Intercultural communication, as proposed and theorized by Edward Hall (1959), is an essential skill in this global village. Instead of going deep into the anthropological and linguistic aspect of Hall's discussion, this article would elaborate on the framework and significance of intercultural communication for the contemporary reader. Martin and Nakayama (2018) have dedicated two decades in their joint work that has reached its seventh edition to articulating the raison d'être of intercultural communication, boiling down to the following six "imperatives": self-awareness, demographic change, economic mapping, technological access, international peace, and ethical concern.
Of these six aspects, the self-awareness imperative is most relevant, and probably elusive, to the student readers of AWEC Newsletter, hence its pivotal role in this article. Over the past two years of teaching and helping students refine their application documents for studying abroad in the course "English Writing for Academic Pursuit", I have kept in contact with some of my previous students and tried to track how they adapt themselves to the new environment and culture in the USA and Europe. A vast majority of them have reported varied degrees of difficulty. In terms of adapting oneself to American universities, Maryanne Datesman et al. (2014) have clearly pointed out how international students have been struggling to keep their overseas stay on the right track:

These students are frequently confused or even mystified about American values, attitudes, and cultural patterns. Even those students who have mastered enough English to take courses in an American university often find that they do not understand the cultural rules well enough to be successful as students.

The message is clear and alarming—these students pursuing their degrees overseas are barely ready for, or even unaware of, the potential challenges posed by an unfamiliar milieu. Simply put, their understanding of the past self fails to keep abreast of the accelerating rate at which a new self in a foreign context is expected to arrive. That is to say, as reflected in my students’ correspondence, many of these international students tend to underestimate the importance of learning intercultural communication as a survival skill, leading to their frustration and bewilderment in the early or even middle stage of living and studying overseas.
Another instance to underline the importance of learning intercultural communication happened during my trip to attend an academic conference in Europe in 2019 (EATAW2019). The theme that year was "Academic writing at intersections: Interdisciplinarity, genre hybridization, multilingualism, digitalization, and interculturality." As encouraged by some of the thematic keywords, "intersections," "interdisciplinarity" and "interculturality," scholars there were particularly active in exchanging ideas and extending interpersonal network. I followed suit and fared well until I bumped into a scholar from Finland. After a brief exchange of greetings, I could perceive the distance he intentionally kept between us; at that time, I could only go so far as to interpret it as a sign of lack of interest in our conversations. However, one day it dawns on me that the Finnish abide by "a cultural norm [that] discourages striking up a conversation with strangers in public places" (Rogers & Steinfatt, 1999, p. 151). This experience stimulates me to try harder to study and understand certain cultural norms in Europe to better instill proper intercultural communication knowledge into my students with a prospect of studying in European universities.
Intercultural communication is here to stay. For those who would like to refine their understanding and practice of intercultural communication, Dignen and Chamberlain’s book Fifty Ways to Improve Your Intercultural Skills (2009) offers a step-by-step introduction to the knowledge, know-how, and exercise that will help readers build up their intercultural literacy.


Datesman et al. (2014). American Ways: An Introduction to American Culture (4th ed.). USA: Pearson Education.

Dignen, B. & Chamberlain, J. (2009). Fifty  Ways to Improve Your Intercultural Skills. Malaysia: Summertown Publishing.

Hall, E. (1959). The Silent Language. Garden City, NY: Doubleday.

Martin, J. & Nakayama, T. (2018). Intercultural Communication in Contexts (7th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill Education.  

McLuhan, M. (1967). The Medium is the Message. New York: Bantam Books.

Rogers, E. & Steinfatt, T. (1999). Intercultural Communication. USA: Waveland Press.


   (蘇虹菱老師 受訪)(Interviewee: Hung-Ling Su, Project Assistant Professor of AWEC, NTU)








講員:李振清 教授



講者首先和大家分享成長經歷,敘述他如何從一位台灣南部的農家子弟,透過知識的薰陶,勇於走出舒適圈,出國拓展視野,帶著中華博大精深的文化內涵與跨文化的學習態度培養人文素養。也許在面對文化衝擊時我們會感到憤怒、害怕、焦慮,甚至是退縮,講者引用Craig Storti所著之The Art of Crossing Cultures分享,面對衝擊時我們可以Identifying causes、Observe the situation、Appropriate expectations。除此之外,Cross-cultural mistakes、Cultural blindness、Attitude、Mentality、Adjustment等課題,皆值得我們思考。跨文化素養的形塑,來自家庭的教養、學校與同儕,以及社會風氣如政府、領導人、國際化教育等多重面向。講者點出台灣目前面臨的挑戰,如教育經費不足、學生對於自己沒有信心、迫切需要國際性的學習文化等,呼籲台灣應落實跨文化認知與溝通。
講者亦鼓勵學子們寫作,因為「寫作文化」是現代人溝通所需的素養。Becoming a better thinker means a better writer. 透過寫作培養最重要的三項能力:獨立思考、批判思考與明辨是非。學子們可以大膽假設,學習理性回覆的書信「寫作文化」。講者列舉自身書信寫作經驗為例,探討書信寫作文化所呈現的中西差異,讓聽眾從西方社會的溝通素養中得到啟發,學習西方文化重視人際間平等溝通與友善互動之精神。從文化層面省視內在學習動機與文化,反思個人選擇的價值。
當年藉由全球化的洗禮,使得臺灣能從落後到躋身亞洲四小龍,開創世界矚目的台灣奇蹟,是國際化、高等教育、跨文化溝通、人文素養等因素,改變了台灣的命運。今日學子們應該勇敢走出去,拓展視野,並培養自己的寫作與思辨能力。講者的教學經驗顯現出,寫作及文化素養培育不少台灣的菁英人才,學術表現享譽國際。國際化教育與跨文化學習可以引導全球人才交流、全方位合作、創造共享福祉。演講接近尾聲時,講者引用哈佛大學校長Charles William Eliot對學子的勉勵與聽眾分享:"Enter to grow in wisdom. Depart to serve better thy country and thy kind." 最後,講者推薦他認識的史丹佛大學前校長John L. Hennessy所著之《這一生,你想留下什麼?史丹佛的10堂領導課》(Leading Matters: Lessons from My Journey)給莘莘學子,藉由這本啟發性的好書,他期勉大家懷抱一顆謙卑的心,帶著求知慾探索這個世界,為人類服務。