M. Munther Kazem Shamran

 Cultural Shock

A concept or expression used to describe fears and feelings of perceived (surprise, confusion, chaos) when people interact within a completely different culture or social environment such as foreign countries, and these difficulties rise through the extent of assimilation and acceptance of the new culture, which creates difficulties in knowing the extent of the convenience without Appropriately, and in most cases this culture is associated with great (moral) disgust about some of the characteristics of the new culture, and among the most prominent researchers who touched on the concept of (Cultural Shock) is the researcher (Michael Winkelman), as he considered it one of the “researches of culturally differentiated means of communication” and recently some researchers claimed That his cultural shock It has many positive effects on temporary visitors to contrast culture and to increase self-efficacy and also to help improve a person’s self-motivation. Although the scholars and expatriates are experiencing the symptoms of cultural shock, most of them are not aware of the precise meaning of this scientific term, they think (as the phrase implies) that the cultural shock is merely a feeling that affects the expatriate suddenly and without introductions if he arrives in the country of exile as a result of the differences between the culture of his country of origin The culture of the foreign country is, of course, an incomplete and incomplete perception.

The term cultural shock originated in (1954) and was the first to refer to it by the American scientist (Kalvero Oberg), as it showed that the cultural shock is psychological fluctuations experienced by the expatriate, which consists of three basic stages, namely:

Honeymoon phase
This stage begins as soon as the expatriate arrives in the foreign country, as he has a feeling of joy and happiness and his eyes begin to notice the differences between his country of origin and the foreign country, and goes on with his discoveries under a dreamer’s light, so he loves everything new, and the stage brings him to his preference over everything that he lived in his native country. But after a short time, the degree of this pink feeling diminishes, as the expatriate collides with the real reality that he lives in the new culture. They make the stage of pleasure and honey gradually fade and take it to the stage of negotiation.

“Negotiation Phase”
In this stage, new things become familiar and pale, and fun and excitement turn into boredom and frustration, and the expatriate gradually feels a kind of anxiety and depression, so he begins to criticize the new culture and sees in it only the barriers of language and the different systems and laws, the type of food, the nature of people, the way of life, and so on. Which creates a feeling of distress and resentment towards the new culture, and at the same time arouses a feeling of longing and longing for its original culture, the homeland, and the memories of friends and family, etc., and it passes through a difficult psychological state and mood swings, with or without reason.

Adjustment Phase
At this stage, and after a few months, usually from (6-12) months, the expatriate gets used gradually to the new culture and settles his psyche and becomes more predictive of situations and better dealing with them, and begins to accept new methods of culture and deals with them in a more positive way and increases his understanding of culture patterns and forms, and less strength His reactions and the time factor are enough to get him to this stage, but psychological readiness and trying to understand the environment and adapting to it helps a lot to reduce acclimatization.

Expatriates in the process of adapting are divided into three sections: –

The first: Rejecter, rejecting the new culture, heart and soul, isolates himself from the new environment and does not see the solution except returning to his original homeland, and these people usually find it difficult to adapt to their original culture when they return to it (and the scholars point towards approximately 60% of expatriates entering under this Section).

The second: The adopter (Adopter) merges with the completely new culture and gives up his original identity, and many of these refuse to return to their countries of origin and prefer to remain in the new country for life (approximately 10% of expatriates join this section).

Third: Cosmopolitan chooses from the new culture what it sees as positive and retains some of its original culture, creating a distinctive and unique style, and these people often do not find it difficult to adapt to their home countries when they return to it (approximately 30% of expatriates represent this section).