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Culture Shock What is culture shock Culture shock is primarily a set of emotional reactions to the loss of perceptual reinforcements from ones own culture to new cultural stimuli which have little or no meaning Adler 1975 In laymans terms culture shock is the anxiety resulting from losing ones sense of when to do what and how Pederson 1988 There are many different ways to experience culture shock It can be experienced across the world or as near as ones backyard Many Americans would venture that they consider themselves very culturally accepting Often when these same Americans travel abroad they experience culture shock It is not always a negative thing Often it is just the shock of being in a place that is completely different in every way from anything one has ever known Culture shock is a widely experienced phenomenon when people enter a different country Stephen Bochner in his chapter entitled Culture Shock describes an interesting way of looking at Culture Shock He describes the Push and Pull factors The four Push factors being the stressful aspects of the new environment The two Pull factors are what the sojourner left behind back home The first Push factor is that operating in an unfamiliar environment is stressful and hard work Secondly it leads to feelings of helplessness as well as self-doubt The role of an individual may be confused due to the new environment Lastly the more one learns about a different culture the more apparent differences become The different practices could disgust a person and the person would feel guilty because they failed to respect local customs The two Pull factors are loss of status and the ever-common homesickness Bochner totally focuses on attitudes and feelings of the individual while another theorist Adler 1975 feels that it is behaviorally based and Pederson 1988 feels differently yet Culture shock has an emotional core and produces a heightened emotional awareness of the new and
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