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Reflection Paper 2

Reflection Paper 2 - Reflection Paper 2 Meeting 1...

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Reflection Paper 2 Meeting 1 : 3/25/11 5:00-6:30pm Coffee Date at Starbucks in Downtown New Brunswick Topics Discussed: Lillian’s spring break experience in Beijing, China Cultural difference in the idea of “treating” Cultural difference in college students’ idea of fun in China vs. America Over spring break, Lillian secretly traveled to Beijing, China to visit her boyfriend without her parents’ consent. In fact, she had to miss a few days of school in order to make her trip worthwhile. I was highly anxious to hear more elaborate details about her adventure in Beijing that afternoon in Starbucks. She brought me back priceless souvenirs from Beijing, which made me felt both shocked and appreciative of her thinking about me on her trip. Our meetings have always been going well, but this meeting went especially well because we haven’t communicated at all over spring break. Lillian told me how much she missed me, and she told all of her friends in China about me. Lillian claimed that after returning back to Beijing, she realized how much she misses her boyfriend, her friends from her undergraduate school, and most importantly, the Chinese culture. She described how her friends in China were simply more fun and caring than her friends from Rutgers. I explained to her that the cultural differences in the concepts of “fun” and “caring” in China vs. America really play a significant role on how she perceives her experiences. For instance, all of Lillian’s friends in China may perceive going to the karaoke as a “fun” event; whereas Lillian’s friends in America may consider partying or going to the bar as “fun” events. Different cultures have different standards and judgments on the idea of “fun;” therefore, it doesn’t necessarily mean that people in China are naturally more fun. In fact, Lillian is still more susceptible to the culture in China, in which drinking and clubbing are not valued as much as in
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American culture. Furthermore, Lillian told me that her friends in China showed her more core by taking turns treating each other to meals. One cultural element that we both have in common is the concept of “treating each other to meals.” Americans believe in “going Dutch” while eating out with friends, but Chinese people place more emphasis on taking turns treating each other to show reciprocity of affection towards one another. This difference can be related to the concept of Individualism vs. Collectivism, one of
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