Mooc Island +++ seals +++ absolutely intercultural 254 +++

Hanko seals

In this show we’ll be looking at an unexpected effect of the pandemic on bureaucracy in Japan and we’ll also be looking at how doing an intercultural course in a virtual world can change your outlook.

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Colombian coffee +++ Fourth of July +++ Absolutely Intercultural 252 +++

US flag

Welcome to show 252 of Absolutely Intercultural, the show about all things intercultural. My name’s Anne Fox and I’m coming to you from a locked down Denmark. But the Covid 19 pandemic is overshadowed somewhat by the Black Lives Matter protests sparked by the killing of George Floyd. These protests have gone global and with American Independence Day coming up I wondered how Americans were feeling about the meaning of the fourth of July right now.

Do you remember Luis from Colombia who we met in Show 250? He was a wedding photographer in Colombia but could not continue in cold and rainy Denmark so he decided to start a coffee importing business and how easy was that?

In this show we are talking to Elisabeth Hansen from Arizona who is now living and working in Australia. Elisabeth answered our call for Americans wanting to talk about what the fourth of July means to them. So, if you have an intercultural story you want to share then just get in touch either here on our webpage or on our Facebook page.

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Angélique Kidjo +++ UNICEF +++ Covid19 +++ Le Province +++ wedding rituals +++ Absolutely Intercultural 250

Do not hug

This show is coming to you from a partially locked down Denmark. Yes, this show is coming to you right in the middle of the COVID 19 pandemic with schools and businesses shut down and people advised to keep a good distance from each other. Fortunately, all the contributors to the show could be reached digitally. I talked to Elizabeth Anne, a former teacher based in the south of France who told me how the country is divided.

Then, I talked to Luis from Colombia, who recently moved to Denmark. In Colombia Luis was a wedding photographer but in Denmark, he discovered that wedding ceremonies were not so predictable.

Now, do you want to dance? Angelique Kidjo has recorded a special version of a song that was popular during the apartheid years in South Africa in the 1950s. The song Pata Pata means lightly touch but in these Covid 19 times the advice is no touching! So UNICEF, in collaboration with one of their goodwill ambassadors, Angelique Kidjo, has slightly changed the song so that it is about NOT touching and you can be in the video which comes out later this month if you film yourself dancing to it!

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coded English +++ Outside magazine +++ Absolutely Intercultural 248 +++

Outside Online magazine

In this episode we’ll be introducing you to a new online magazine and hearing about some language challenges for non-native English speakers.

But be careful! Learning English could lead to some very strange results when you go back home!

And why talking about mundane everyday things for ages could actually be a sign of something good!

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effect of accents +++ Brexit +++ Absolutely Intercultural 246

Image: Pixabay

Well I hope that you have recovered from hearing about all those gory details about life on the farm in the last show! This is the first show of 2020 so Happy New Year! In this show we go to the UK because there, finally three and a half years after the referendum on whether to leave the EU, the UK government has managed to pass legislation that takes the UK to the next stage. Anyway all our contributors today are migrants to the UK. But you will probably learn almost nothing about Brexit from this show. So if you are concerned that this will be about arcane constitutional corners of Britain or obscure trade rules then please don’t worry!

So what will we be hearing about? Would our contributors recommend migrating to the UK from the EU right now, for example?

And how is the transition from freedom of movement to getting permission to stay making migrants feel?

Although we talked long and hard about being a migrant in the UK, our third contributor, Konrad, did not even mention Brexit. Instead, he gave what I think is the best description I have heard so far of what an intercultural coach does.

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remote surveys +++ formal language +++ intercultural training +++ Absolutely Intercultural 244 +++

Electricity pylon
How to get information about African electrification from Denmark?

From a university internship to a career as an intercultural trainer we’ll be talking to people at both ends of their career in show 244 of absolutely Intercultural. My name’s Anne Fox and this show is coming to you from Denmark.

First, Gabrielle Lachance, a French Canadian Masters student interning with a consultancy company in Denmark, tasked with getting a good response rate to a survey about electrification in southern African countries. But what are the chances of getting a good response when you send an email asking for complicated technical information to people that you have no connection with?

And then I talked to Iris Schneider who I met at the SIETAR congress in Belgium in June who is an intercultural trainer based in Bonn Germany. How did she get her first intercultural trainer job? She applied as a relocation expert and then this happened!

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Hands Up project +++ Palestine +++ Bilbrough +++ Absolutely Intercultural 242 +++

I am hoping that by the end of this show you will want to buy a book called ‘Toothbrush and other plays’, as this will help the wonderful Hands Up project which we are going to hear about. You will find the link to buy the book here.

So what is this show about? It’s about the difficulties of getting to and from Gaza in Palestine. It’s about the power of storytelling as a way of learning language and it’s about ingenious ways of getting classes in Palestine to create and perform plays to audiences all over the world. Nick Bilbrough is the man behind the project, and I caught up with him at the IATEFL conference in Liverpool in April where teachers of English from all over the world gather to exchange ideas.

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SIETAR +++ Syria +++ Pilbeam +++ diversophy +++ Absolutely Intercultural 239 +++

Leuven town hallLast week I was in Belgium in the beautiful city of Leuven for the SIETAR Congress.

SIETAR stands for the Society for Intercultural Education, Training and Research and their biennial congress is a very friendly affair. Of course a Congress is always very diverse, forgive the pun, and in addition diversity was one of the main themes of the Congress this year so todays show is also very diverse.

If you are listening to this from our website then you will see a beautiful image of the gothic town hall of Leuven. This is where we had the opening reception to the Congress and this is also where we heard the mayor of Leuven, Mohamed Ridouani,  give a very inspirational talk about what you can do at local level to make people feel valued and included. Unfortunately I did not ask him to be on the podcast but we do have an interesting variety of people for you in the next 25 minutes or so.

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gender issues +++ Palestine +++ IATEFL +++ Absolutely Intercultural 238 +++

I’m sitting here in Denmark after having attended the annual IATEFL conference in Liverpool in the UK. There are always people from all over the world at this conference, which is one of the biggest gatherings of teachers of English as a foreign language in the world and this year was no exception.
One really nice surprise for me was to meet up with We’am Hamdan who I had recently worked with virtually. I love working online but it’s always nice to meet people face to face and We’am had travelled a long way from Palestine to be in Liverpool where she was leading a session for the IATEFL Global Issues special interest group. We’am was talking about a really interesting and universal topic so we have decided to devote this whole show to it.

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cosmetics +++ Mara D’Louca +++ Instagram +++ China +++ Absolutely Intercultural 236 +++

Thanks to Katie Stewart who contacted us about an interesting initiative she had heard of and which means that for the first time on Absolutely Intercultural we’ll be hearing about make-up and how that differs across cultures.

And we’ll also be going to China to find out more about the universal social monitoring that you read so much about.

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