Multicultural: United Kingdom and National Identity Essay

Submitted By lucaslo
Words: 1017
Pages: 5

My Understanding of National Identity After a semester’s learning, I have had a brief understanding of inter-cultural communication. In this term paper I will first discuss an interesting phenomenon which happened in my oral teachers, with the knowledge we have learned as the basis for explanation. The two oral teachers are named Dani and Dragana, with the former one as my teacher of British Culture and Society, while the latter my oral English teacher. Now I would like to introduce their background, which has a great influence on their teaching styles. Dani is from Britain, but she majors in archaeology and is quite interested in oriental history and culture, especially the Chinese culture. For this reason, she went to Beijing for further education within a certain period of time and now she is going to Yale University for her Doctor Degree. Thus it can be concluded that Dani is an oriental-style teacher to some extent. As for Dragana, like other foreign teachers from US, she is quite of American-style. That is to say, more freedom, class interactions, designed activities are expected in this style of class teaching. Based on what has been mentioned above, we can guess I have experienced two thoroughly different kinds of oral classes. On the one hand, Dani is quite strict with her students, who always calls for her students to do presentations and tests, just like a typical Chinese teacher. What is more, she hates others’ being late. Once she punished those students who were late, by asking them to stand in the classroom. On the other hand, Dragana’s class is always full of fun, as we don’t have so many tests as we do in Dani’s class. Often, we have in-class discussions and activities like making an ideal robot. By comparison, we can find that though both teachers come from western countries, Dani is quite affected by the Eastern culture, making me feel that she is just a Chinese teacher. So I think this phenomenon can show us some reflections upon the cultural differences between Britain and China, which results from the national identity. Now I will try my best to elaborate my understanding about this important concept. According to my comprehension, national identity is concerned with what the people feel about their belonging countries and emotional appeals towards their specific cultures, politics and so on. People living in different countries will have different understandings about a certain topic, show different attitudes towards a specific idea and more importantly take different actions in a fixed situation. In the next part I will make a further discussion about the differences between British and Chinese identity with a thorough analysis followed. In my opinion, the biggest difference lies in the culture itself. Gentility is the most extraordinary character for the British. Every time we talk about Englishmen, we regard them as gentlemen first. Politeness should be considered as one of their shining points. What is more, the British always attach importance to holidays for relaxation and enjoyment, which will guarantee their own freedom and privacy. But in China, things are quite different. Chinese are always modest in others’ eyes, yet with not enough freedom to say or do anything, especially when it is in contradiction with public profits. I think this is because of the historical culture. One case in point is that King Arthur created a time of knights and chivalry, leaving people become gentle from then on. And the system of constitutional monarchy entitles people to enjoy the freedom, holding that everyone should be treated as equal according to the laws and regulations no matter whether you are rich or poor, powerful or powerless, or anything else, causing them to form individualism. On the contrary, under thousands of years of the influence of Confucianism, the Chinese citizens are educated to be modest and