Cross-cultural Socialization into a Common Profession: Exploring how Nursing Students in Taiwan and in the U.S. Narrate Professional Identity

Davis Boyd H., Thiede Ralf, Smith Mary K.
2013 Crossroads A Journal of English Studies  
This discussion will draw on a series of written stories and commentaries on professional values in nursing for a cross-cultural pragmatics study of US nursing students in North Carolina and Chinese nursing students in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. We explore cultural differences in salience as a pragmatics construct for a professional construct important in nursing, that of caring. The nursing students were not in direct contact with each other except through written stories and commentaries:The Chinese
more » ... urses first wrote their thoughts in Mandarin and then translated them into English, after which the US students read and responded to them. The nursing students from both countries assumed that they shared constructs of what constituted professional values in nursing. However, our discussion will question the degree to which they shared common ground and assigned similar salience to the construct. We conclude that the Chinese and the US student nurses erroneously assumed that they shared each other's understanding of 'caring,' underestimating the differences in work environment and cultural expectations. We also propose that they are readily capable, through communication, of recalibrating their reference frames once made aware that they differ.
doi:10.15290/cr.2013.01.01 fatcat:ml6wd2ybl5fsflnkwjgyumtp6a