Hey Everyone! Hope yall are doing as well as you can be!
When I started watching Asian dramas, some scenarios were so absurd to me, and I just didn’t understand the source of the conflict sometimes. I would always ask myself questions like “Why can’t they just come out and say what they want?” “Why did the character get offended?” “Why is everything so indirect?” It was a frustrating experience sometimes.
I’m currently pursuing a master’s degree and am learning some interesting things that have helped me understand more of what I am watching in k-dramas too. Thought it would be good to share. Yall may have picked up on some of these things too!
Edit: The low context and high context scale only refers to methods of interpersonal communication. The word “context” refers to the context of a situation/conversation. Some places it is rude/ unbecoming/intimidating to be direct with the way you speak. Some places it is rude/ frustrating to be indirect. One is not better than another. It’s just different!
High Context Cultures
- For communication, meaning is conveyed via non-verbal means like:
- Eye contact, Tone, Silence, Scripted conversations
- Burden of understanding falls on the listener, not the speaker
- Cultures tend to be rigidly hierarchical and homogenous, which allows for shared norms governing communication
- Developed in relatively isolated and homogenous societies with low levels of immigration
- Most of the meaning is conveyed through explicit verbal conversation as opposed to being implied through context, non-verbal cues, and conversation
- Burden of understanding falls on the speaker
- High levels of immigration or cultures prone to imperialism
Of course, not every single individual can be generalized. Each person also has their own experiences, personality, and communication style, but this may be useful in understanding certain scenarios the writers of dramas put in place. What do you yall think?