Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Indiana Statesman: Gift giving requires different etiquettes around the world


By Shana Dennis
Published: Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Source: Indiana Statesman

In Mexican culture it is bad luck to give yellow flowers as a gift since they are predominantly used for funerals, and pearls as a bridal present are bad luck because pearls represent sorrow, said Patricia Saylor, a Spanish instructor in the languages, literatures and linguistics department.
"But some mother-in-laws who do not like the bride give them anyway," Saylor said.
Today the exchange of presents will be discussed with a global perspective in mind for "International Gift-Giving Customs" at 3:30 p.m. at the Events Area of Cunningham Memorial Library.
"Saylor has organized a panel of six teachers' assistants (TAs) and two adjuncts who will use PowerPoint to present ‘International Gift-Giving Customs,'" said Lisa Calvin, associate professor of the LLL. "They will talk about gift-giving in Japan, Thailand, Egypt, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Spain and Germany."
Saylor, an adjunct in the LLL, said that it is important to be prepared for the little things in a culture you are visiting.
"It's one thing to learn the language; it's another to live in the culture," Saylor said. "You hardly see this information in textbooks."
The kind of gift a person gives and even the way it is given can be highly offensive if the foreign giver is ignorant of the customs of the culture he or she is visiting.
Read this article @ Indiana Statesman

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