It took some determination to complete this short post… besides all the excuses, I failed to keep up with a promise. But that’s okay. The bright side being I didn’t give up this story. I believe it is a great reflection of my current status.
In Dominique Moïsi’s book – The Geopolitics of Emotion, one of the focuses on the rise of Asia has caught my attention.
Despite the book being published almost 10 years ago, the trends predicted by Moïsi has been playing out now. I can kind of identify myself with his words.
In work, I was given opportunities to work with families of the same cultural background as me. Whenever I took my colleagues to interview these families, their values and practices stroke my colleagues every time. However, I was placed in a privileged position to say, ‘I understand you.’ In my area of work, these families are truly remaining themselves while becoming the dominant culture (otherwise they will not be able to escape from the eyes of these enforcement). I can see the struggles of these families, especially the parents. Just like myself, these parents are raised in our traditional cultural values and practices, but we all migrated to the West for the better lives of our children (not that I have any children now…). However while we can see that our children is having a brighter future here, we continue to struggle how to disseminate our cultural values to them. It would be hard for the children themselves too. Being told one way at home and the other at school.
On the other hand, it is interesting how our society pushes for cultural awareness in our practices, but our practices and policies do not necessarily reflect these cultural sensitivities from the perspective of the Others (other cultures in opposition to the dominant culture I am situated in). These policies and practices are often generated from the views of the dominant culture with little exceptions.
As an Other living in the West, it has been an interesting experience. To be honest, I enjoy the privilege of living in both worlds. The exposure to the beautiful and vivid lifestyle in the West allowed me to reflect upon my core Chinese values. This, in turn, strengthen who I am.
I’m in no position to suggest policy changes in terms of cultural awareness. However I only wish that we better engage with each other with less conflicts and more understanding.