Cross cultural communication

A Vietnamese speaking friend asked me to explain the difference between “convention” and “convection”. After defining a couple of the meanings of “convention” and trying to explain the basic scientific nature of “convection”, he showed me the newspaper headline that he was trying to decipher. It read: “Wrongful Conviction”.

It reminded me of how much of what we say is open to misinterpretation and misunderstanding. We are misunderstood far more often than we realize because all communication is, in fact, cross cultural.

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