O istorie a comunicarii interculturale
This short chapter, A Brief History of Intercultural Communication, presents studies and perspectives of different authors about intercultural communication. It tries to follow an historical evolution of the concept, from its first theories in the 1950s through the work of the US Foreign Service Institute and the publication of Edward Hall's The Silent Language to the latest trends (intercultural management and intercultural dialogue).
The first authors based their theories on the USA, as it is representative for the multicultural environment. All theories issued on the American ground can be applied to the European space, which represents an unified territory of common historical and cultural basis (and this is the real dimension of Europe), not only on economical basis, as the European Union started. The European "interculturality" is more complex due to the intricated relations within Europe, which during its history, longer and tumultuously then the American's, has undergone many changes at the political, social and economic level, having as effect the migrations, the instability of the national and state boundaries.
A special attention is offered to the roots of intercultural communication, the first explorers and the roman-greek synthesis. The review of the previous decades reveals the main theories on intercultural communication and the most proeminent figures of the interculturalists (in the 1970s Samovar and Porter, Condon and Yousef, in the 1980s Gudykunst, in the 1990s Dodd). The beginning of the XXIst century offers new perspectives, especially due to teenagers contacts, the exchange programmes, the demographic changes and the European Union policies regarding diversity.
To understand the intercultural field we need to take into consideration different aspects of culture, communication and intercultural interactions. An interdisciplinary analysis is required with the help of linguists, anthropologists, psychologists, theologians and others. In the latest decades, there was a constant concern about the diversity and the multicultural environment of our world, which was concretized
in The UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity in 2001, completed in 2005 by The UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions and many NGOs, trainings and master's programmes on intercultural communication.
Intercultural communication has an important role: it can prevent miscommunication, misunderstandings and mistakes, conflict situations in our multicultural world. This capter offers a perspective of intercultural communication and stimulates the involvement in the "interculturality" field.
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