Hi there Jennifer, thanks for reading and for the kind words. I definitely feel like an acknowledgement of these misinterpretations is a vital first step. However, I think that meaningful change towards a more comprehensive understanding of different people is going to be harder to achieve. Language is only one component of the equation, the other part is the very real way different people perceive and engage with the world. It’s not that there aren’t capable multilingual people in government, the problem is that these people struggle to articulate the nuances of different cultures and languages to decision makers. As a fellow Chinese speaker, I’m sure you’re well aware of the cultural nuances and subtleties found within Chinese. At every step of negotiations and discourse we need to remind ourselves that the other person actually conceives of the world differently to us. Presently the vast majority of decision makers fall back on the biases of their own culture and values and this colours their interpretation of the other. Unfortunately the realm of interpreting body language is relatively unknown to me so I can’t really comment on this. Thanks again!


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