cultural understanding

Baijiu, China’s go-to alcohol, is virtually unknown in the rest of the world. [...] “It is a matter of respect. When someone has a bottle of baijiu on the table you should probably drink it because it’s there for you. It’s a gift and an expression of warmth. So it’s nice to be able to reciprocate and participate in the local drinking ritual,” Sandhaus remarked.

The ASSE International Student Exchange Program brings students from more than 30 different countries, from Brazil to Estonia and Moldova to Thailand, to Washington and other states every year. The summer months are the last chance local families are able to sign up to host an exchange student, since they’ve got to be settled by the end of August for school to begin in September, said Margot Hoffman, the Washington state ASSE coordinator.

Days after attacks on African students in Greater Noida, a group of Indian and African students came together for a friendly football match on Friday at Sharda University. The 90-minute match was played between two teams, Chancellor's 11 and Embassy 11, which had the same composition - four students from Africa, one each from Nepal, Bhutan, Vietnam and Afghanistan, and three from India.

In her examination of cultural diplomacy, Von Maltzahn looks briefly at its relationship with ‘soft power’, with the Europeans developing structured programmes between the world wars, followed lately by China, but with few Arab countries taking the practice seriously, other than recently through satellite television channels.  Compared to Iran, Syria has had little desire to propagate its culture abroad. 

“In September, Conflict Kitchen announced it would serve Palestinian food and celebrate Palestinian culture,” The Washington Post reported, “This choice — a chance to sell familiar dishes such as hummus and falafel with the lesser known, such as ­rumaniyya, maftoul and namoura — turned into more than just a menu change.”

The “Culinary Diplomacy: Promoting Cultural Understanding Through Food” exchange will provide an opportunity to explore the role of food in bringing people of varied backgrounds together. The participants will meet with chefs, farmers, and culinary experts across the country.

As the J-1 program brings over 100,000 young people coming to the U.S. annually, it has become as much about money as cultural understanding. The reforms by State Department would limit and refine the types of jobs students can have and ensure that the objective of the program — positive exposure to the United States — is accomplished.

August 14, 2011

For uninformed visitors, the sight and sound of foreigners belting it out in Chinese might seem bizarre. But Glenn is part of an unprecedented program called I Sing Beijing that has brought to China 20 young Western performers from the United States, Europe and Central and South America to learn to sing opera in Mandarin. More than 200 people auditioned in Los Angeles, Denver and New York.