How might watching a movie from another country help you prepare to interpret non verbal culture correctly?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Movies (as well as television shows) from foreign countries are very helpful in understanding the nonverbal culture of a country.  This can prepare a person to interact with people from that country.

In movies and TV shows from other countries, we see the ways in which the people interact.  We see how close they are when they talk to one another.  We see how they interact if they like each other or if they do not.  We see how they stand relative to people who are higher or lower than them in the social hierarchy.  We even see things like how they interact while eating and drinking.  For example, in Japanese society, it is impolite to fill one’s own glass and it is also impolite if you do not fill the glass of another person when it is empty.  From watching movies, you can see people interacting in these ways.

Of course, just watching one or two movies or shows will not be a fool-proof way of learning.  It is hard to learn if you just watch and do not have anyone to explain things to you.  However, watching people in movies and shows lets you see how they interact nonverbally and it helps prepare you to correctly interpret nonverbal communications from people of that country.