The Power of Cultural Influence on Communication

By Austin B. Hahn

My culture influences the way I make meaning of symbols and gestures. This in turn, affects how I conduct my personal behavior in social settings. I am also instilled with a set of values, and my idea about how the world works could be considered subversive, similar to someone else’s, or inspiring. Either way, my culture has accustomed me to a standard of social practices that I use when I go out in the world and apply for a job, when I conduct business with someone, and when I talk to a friend or a family member. Taking all of the aforementioned into consideration, whenever I find my culturally influenced communicative behaviors colliding with another person’s in a negative way, I am sensitized to the cultural practices that I have been shaped with. This also reminds me of the importance to learn about the communicative styles of other cultures. As a result, my family co-culture, and the ever changing global culture of the 21st century, merge to help form the beliefs I have today.

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