Wednesday, September 13, 2006


From a comment on The Panopticon of Ecclesial White-ness: Taking Foucault to a Church divided:

"I might be a jerk, but that doesn't mean I'm wrong" -- dude, that's like my personal motto. Maybe it's a Catholic thing? The first time I brought my Protestant wife-to-be home to meet the folks, my dad, after baiting her on some now-forgotten topic, finally asked her: "So, you don't like to argue?" Maybe Catholics rely more on external surveillance to keep themselves in line: lists of sins, the confessional, other people pointing out their jerkiness. Protestants live under the perpetual gaze of the inner panopticon, dying daily to the inner jerk and perpetually manifesting their regenerated nice selves. But I digress...

That's like me and Jodi. When we visit her parents, or when they visit us, they spend 80% of the time "arguing". Then when I mention it, Jodi denies that they were arguing. That's their way of discussing things, she says. My family, on the other hand, relies on hidden cues and latent shared values to reach consensus. It will be interesting to see which way our kids lean, but I have a pretty good hunch already.

The above is a good example of a difference in family culture, and not national culture. Surprising to me, people don't ask about me and Jodi's cross-cultural issues a lot. (The #1 question is what language we speak at home.) But it seems to me like that 80% of the conflicts we have stem from personality differences and only 20% from cultural differences. Jodi has also remarked to me and to friends that when you spend time with them, you find out that people from other cultures are more similar to yourself than you had previously thought. (The answer: about 50%/50% Chinese and English.)


At Sep 15, 2006, 2:54:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said:

Last Name=Doyle

'Nuff said. ;)

- andy :)


Post a Comment

Post a Comment

« Home