For that, this movie was expected to mention different accents of English or new vocabulary created by mixing two languages together. However, misunderstanding between Americans and Mexicans were obviously unavoidable due to language barriers. Besides, we also had several stereotypes related to cultural differences between people who came from different countries because language is an important part of culture. To be more specific, while American people were perceived to have better life with appropriate salary and high standard of living, Mexicans were suffering numerous difficulties in their lives.
Thus, numerous Mexicans were dreaming of better lives in America. By many ways, they tried to come there to looking for jobs that provided them much money than in their home country even illegally. Mexican people flexibly earned money by many ways, such as salesman, workers and housekeepers for Americans. However, due to language barriers and lack of experiments, these jobs did not provide them much money as expected. Mexicans were discriminated in American society, as their social position was low. In addition, American people usually thought themselves better than Mexicans.
Sometimes, they wanted to be the best of everything. Based on personal experiences, Mexicans and American were stereotyped with special characters. Typical Mexicans looked like Spanish people in term of outside appearance and obviously, they spoke Spanish. Mexican society usually reminded us drugs and violence that were seriously happening day by day. Furthermore, they were perceived to be short-tempered. On the other hand, Americans were easy-going. Then, they were highly task-orient when concerning much about time and work. Additionally, money represented a remarkable position in their lives.
Hence, they were working hard for their bright career with much money. B. After The Movie After the movie, some stereotypes were confirmed as our thoughts. Besides, there were numerous new things about Americans and Mexicans that we learned from the film. It could be seen that money had a particular position in American society. This was inferred by the fact that Deborah gave 20$ for Flors relative as an apology when her nose was bleeding. Then, during the conversation about recruitment, Deborah did not forget to mention money and repeat it as an essence. Furthermore, money issue appeared in the way American people educate their kids.
For example, John taught his children by telling them to collect pebbles and paying them cash equivalently to their effort. American people usually did not mean what they were saying. In the movie, when leaving the paper to Flor with the phrase steal your daughter, American women actually just wanted to hang out with Cristina instead of truly stealing her. However, this might mean so serious to Mexican mother when she was angry. Culturally, American people had some interesting habits, such as kissing new acquaintances or inviting women glasses of wine in the pub or restaurant.
These would be figured out in this movie. They were quite open about sex and relationships. Moreover, American wives also not only concerned much about their career but also of their husbands. Mexican values were seen through two characters Flor and Cristina. If Cristina was typical for new young generation who adapted modern society quickly, Flor was an traditional mother who was fighting to keep their values. Privacy was always respected in Mexican culture. That was why Flor felt uncomfortable when being kissed for the first meet and refused drink invitation from American men in the restaurant.
She also kept the acceptable distance with John when talking to him. Then, Mexican people usually meant exactly what they said, which made Flor seriously behave when misunderstanding Deborahs paper. Mexican people were thought to mess up the emotion and work in the daily life. For instance, feeling embarrassed after arguing, Flor wanted to quit the job while her male boss did not force her to do that. Obviously, Mexican people were close in sex and relations, which explained why Mexican people always worried about her daughter when she got order.
Furthermore, based on a conflict between Flor and John, it was seen that the ways to educate their kids were different. Then, thoughts about weight or food also drew complicated scenes for the movie. In addition, at the end of the film, Mexican traditional values seemed to be essentially recognized by Mexican daughter after her mother question Is what you want for yourself to become someone very different than me. C. The Visible and Invisible Cultural Aspects Culture Iceberg a. Surface Culture Language barriers In Mexico there is over 113 million people and a majority of them speaks Spanish as their mother tongue.
On the other hand in USA there is over 308 million people and majority of Americans speak English. Its impossible to avoid misunderstandings when people are speaking second language. Greetings In Latino culture, where Mexican culture belongs to, is normal to greet with two kisses on the cheeks. Americans greet normally by shaking hands, because for them their personal space is smaller. Kissing on the cheeks may feel uncomfortable to Americans. b. Unspoken Rules Dealing with problems Mexicans are very intense so they will show their feelings when something is wrong.
Mexicans arent afraid of admitting that they did something wrong or if they are wrong. While Americans takes it losing or consider it was shameful to be wrong. c. Unconscious Rules Values Mexican: Family, Health, Happiness, and Roots American: Status, Money, well-balanced life For Mexicans there is nothing more important than family: work comes always second. Mexicans are able to enjoy of small things and live in a moment. Its something else than money that makes them happy. They are happy if they have enough money to have roof on top of their heads, buy food and water and if they are healthy.
Me, myself and I, thats the way Americans think. They first think of themselves: How do I look? What about me? What do other people think of me? Americans want to be best at everything: good education, big house, a lot of money, has to be in good shape. Family is also important for Americans but in a different way. Its important that their children will have the best education or that our family has the latest technology or car. At least you need to be better than your neighbor. Americans are more material people than Mexicans. But does the material make them happy?
Maintaining this kind of lifestyle also requires a lot of money. Thats why work is very important for Americans, and they work around the clock to maintain their lifestyle. Americans are trying to find balance between work and family. Concept of money Money for Americans is like a status symbol. The more you have money the more important and powerful human you are. Money is norm for American and they spent it everyday (and use it for example to go watching the movie). But Mexicans are poorer than Americans. They really have to work everyday to earn money.
The money is kind of a blessing to Mexicans. They dont have as good education than Americans have, so it shows what they earn. Education Education is very important for Americans. Good education is assumption for a well-paid job. It is really common that parents want their children to get in private school. Schools in America grant scholarships for example of good achievement in school or good sports success. Mexicans also appreciate education, but there are happy to even have one. Education is expensive and only few Mexicans have a possibility to choose their school. Concept of beauty.
Americans take their look more seriously. Women are training hard to have perfect body or they may even go for plastic surgeries. Mexicans are content with their look and they are proud of their Latino roots. They arent obsessed with their look. Meanwhile Americans wants to be thin Mexicans are proud of their natural body. Work ethic In Mexican culture men normally work to earn money, and women takes care of chores at home. In America is normal that both of parents work, but is not unmoral that women stay home. Its also common that American women dont work at all. They are housewives.
Parenting In Mexican culture children are raised with a lot of parental care and attention. Mexicans wants their children to be who they are. Not try to be anyone else. And in general they are proud where they come. Mexican mothers role is really strong. In American culture children are raised in a more independent manner, with minimal guidance from parents. Thats because work requires so much time from the parents. D. Examples Movie Situations Explained 1. Deborah (wife) took Cristina (Flors daughter) out without Flors permission, leaving one short note May I borrow your daughter?
* Deborah: simple thinking, careless, spontaneous, do as wish (typical interdependent American woman) * Flor: extremely worried getting furious, in deep need of a apology, full explanation (children always come first) (overprotect towards own child) 2. Cristina got into a high-class school * Deborah: strongly believes in the school itself regardless of the childrens personalities (high-class education guarantees a good life) * Flor: worried about changes of daughter (losing roots of origin, attitude, and benefits for her own daughter Etc.) (more concerned about own culture, afraid of blending in) * John: having the same thoughts as Flors 3.
John promised to grant money for the kids who collected sea glass on their holiday. * Cristina: serious about the promise (money concerns) * Other two kids (American kids): carefree 4. Love scene between John and Flor * John: betrayed man, trying to forget by approaching another woman * Flor: behaving herself, staying conscious (cultural values of family and motherhood come first) 5. Desires of Flor; desires of Deborah.
* Flor: own kids come first (family safety and stability) * Deborah: define oneself, high self-esteem, competitive in every way (concept of oneself) E. Hall and Hofstede Classifications Observed in The Movie Geert Hofstede : Classifications | American| Mexican| 1. Power Distance Index| (not mentioned)| (not mentioned)| 2. Uncertainty Avoidance Index| learning to get familiar with risks- low uncertainty avoidance| learning to get familiar with risks- low uncertainty avoidance| 3. Individualism/Collectivism| Individualism| Collectivism| 4. Masculinity/Femininity| Every gender is equal.
Self-esteem grows big. | Differentiation in the roles of male/female. Male is usually the stronger one; female should have someone to rely on. | 5. Long-term Orientation| Short-tem orientation| Long-term orientation| Edward Hall: Classifications | American| Mexican| 1. Space| Kids ask for personal space when they need it; private room cannot be without. | Because of difficult life, it is not possible for every kid to have his or her own space. They are used to it. | 2. Time| (not mentioned)| (not mentioned)| 3. Context| Low context culture| High context culture|.