This will be a great course, and a great experience.
You will see. . . .
Some people like to procrastinate. Others like to arrive early, and in some ways they’re “pre-crastinators”.
I am sending this note out early to make it more convenient for the pre-crastinators to order the textbook on-line (if that is an attractive option for you), and / or to let you get started reading some of the interesting materials that we have for the class (if you are the kind of person who likes to do that sort of thing). Or you might want to start watching one or other of the internationally-award-winning films and videos that we have lined up for the class. If none of these options apply to you, and you feel like a little end-of-the-summer procrastination, just relax and enjoy the wonderful fall weather, or maybe even take a trip to the Minnesota State Fair to enjoy their special, albeit sometimes a bit unusual, treats.
Interest in Understanding Global Cultures has never been higher, and more important . . . even apart from the Olympics. . . .
Yesterday, for example, the BBCNews carried an article on how a “Project connects Moscow pensioners to students abroad” (BBCNews, 22 August 2016), which talks about Russia’s new plan whereby “students learning Russian around the world are being offered the chance to improve their language skills by chatting online to pensioners in Moscow”. Yesterday the BBC also discussed a German plan to start stocking up food and water for future emergencies: “Germans told to stockpile food and water for civil defence.” And, of course, “Brexit,” the UK’s exit from the European Union, has been big news around the world for months, affecting stock markets throughout the industrialized world.
The text isUnderstanding Global Cultures: Metaphorical Journeys Through 34 Nations, Clusters of Nations, Continents, and Diversity, Sixth Edition
(Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, 2015)
Understanding Global Cultures, Sixth Edition (2015)
is currently available on-line for $98.81 new, and $61.88 used.
[It is also being offered on-line for as much as $333.28, or even more, so be careful to check prices.]
(+ p/h, where applicable, at amazon.com & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25).
(20 August 2017)
The exams will be open-book essays constructed from a list of study questions that you help create, so it would be a good idea for you to have your own copy of the text you plan to use in the exams.
For the exams you should normally just need to read the text and other assigned works carefully and be able to discuss them intelligently. That is, you should read these as if you had picked it/them up at an airport or neighborhood bookshop, or read them in the morning or on-line paper, because you were interested in the subject and wanted to know more about the subject, like literally millions of people are doing in everyday life.
PLEASE NOTE:Some students are used to principally memorizing facts in classes. This class is not one where that is the focus. It is about investigating new topics, reading, listening, synthesizing ideas, thinking, exploring, and becoming familiar enough with the various subjects, peoples and places to carry on an intelligent conversation in modern-day society.In short, this class aims to give you practice in critical thinking, and even creativity.
Critical thinking, involving evaluation and synthesis, has long been regarded as essential for success in the modern-day world. In recent years, actually for two decades, creativity has also become central to success, and "process skills" vital to creativity. Process skills involve "strategies to reframe challenges and extrapolate and transform information, and to accept and deal with ambiguity" (Pappano, "Learning to Think Outside the Box," The New York TimesEducationLife, 9 February 2014, 8). Laura Pappano, writer in residence at Wellesley Center for Women at Wellesley College, points out that "In 2010 'creativity' was the factor most crucial for success found in an I.B.M. survey of 1,500 chief executives in 33 industries. These days 'creative' is the most used buzzword in LinkedIn profiles two years running" (2014, 8).
With all of the class materials you will be expected to share your ideas and comments with others in the Class Forums and wikis.
It is not accidental that TAPS, Canada’s leading Beer Magazine—in fact it’s THE BEER MAGAZINE—features this these kind of exams in its editorial of Winter 2012, p. 2); at least one major former Editor in Chief thinks it’s message is worth noting and imitating.
In a nutshell, this course consists of three main segments:
For the first part of the course much of the material for the week will be presented in the form of text materials and slide materials. In the second section of the semester, once you have mastered the basic information relating to Understanding Global Cultures, we will look (generally comparatively, cf., Main Characteristics of Anthropology in Week 01) at a series of video materials from around the world. The final section will focus on your research projects.
One of the four main characteristics of American Anthropology is fieldwork, "a primary research technique, involving “participant observation," which usually means living among the people one is interested in learning from and about. It would be wonderful if for anthropology classes we could just rent a bus or charter a plane and fly off for a year or more to learn first-hand from the people themselves. Money, time, and practicality prohibit that, so the next best things—when it comes to studying anthropology—is going to places and viewing subjects by video, and we will do a lot of that this semester. More information on Visual Anthropology is available on-line at <http://www.d.umn.edu/cla/faculty/troufs/anth1604/visual_anthropology.html>.
In laying out a course one has many options. Given that time is limited one can, for example, opt for an approach that portrays basic features of a large number of cultures/countries, or one can focus more in-depth on a limited number of topics and cultures/countries. In class, we will focus more in-depth on topics and cultures/countries, focusing on a few rather than many. The readings, on the other hand, presents a broader view, featuring over three dozen cultures/countries/regions. Together, the text plus the in-class materials should give you a "pretty good" Understanding of Global Cultures.
You will find that there is "an awful lot" of materials on-line—maybe even too many!
BUT, you will find the required materialscenter stage in your folder. Most of the rest of the materials are optional, but you may find that material useful in working on your class project.
Then have a look at your Gradebook folder, which gives a nice listing of the actual requirements and due dates for the course. (You'll find the link for that in the upper-left-hand corner of the top of Block 1. See the figure in the “First Day Handout.”)
Then have a look at the "Course Overview" in Block 1 (the top of page one) of your folder <https://www.moodle.umn.edu/> . See the figure in the “First Day Handout.”
Please heed the earlier word of caution. recommends that you use theFirefoxbrowser (available free at <https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/update-firefox-latest-version>). The Windows Internet Explorer (IE) occasionally will not display items on your screen. These items will simply not be there on IE when they are fine on or even on Chrome. Microsoft Word should likewise not be used to cut and paste things to ; bad things can happen to your file if you do—randomly. Almost every time you are asked to enter text in , you will see the message, “Please do not copy/paste text directly from Microsoft Word. See explanation here<http://www1.umn.edu/moodle/issues.html#10>.” Please pay attention to that request.
So once again, welcome to Anth 1080 Understanding Global Cultures. This will be a great course, and a great experience. You will see. . . .
Thanks for signing on for Understanding Global Cultures.
I’m looking forward to seeing you on Tuesday, the 29th, in Cina Hall 214, at 2:00 p.m.
Finally, laptops are welcome, in fact encouraged, in the classroom. Many find a laptop quite useful in following the class materials. You can, for example, download all of the slide materials used in class.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to post them on or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
See you on the 29th.
I hope you enjoy the State Fair weather, or maybe even the State Fair itself.
12 August 2017
P.S. If you are new to the world of "technology" don't worry too much about that. Things may not "work" for you at first, but hang in there and we'll help you along. If you have not used course management system before, you might find it helpful to view the orientation tutorial.
Professor, California State University San Marcos
Professor Emeritus, Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland
(Ph.D., Columbia University) is Professor of International Management and Strategy, College of Business Administration, California State University San Marcos. He is also Professor Emeritus, Smith School of Business, University of Maryland at College Park. At Maryland he held several administrative positions, including the Associate Deanship for Academic Affairs and the Founding Directorship of the Center for Global Business, and received the University's International Landmark Award.
Professor Gannon has been the Senior Research Fulbright Professor at the Center for the Study of Work and Higher Education in Germany and the John F. Kennedy/Fulbright Professor at Thammasat University in Bangkok, and has served as a visiting professor at several Asian and European universities. He has also been a consultant to many companies and government agencies. Professor Gannon has lived and worked in over 25 nations for various periods of time as a visiting professor, consultant, and trainer.
Ph.D. Rajnandini “Raj” Pillai (Ph.D., State University of New York at Buffalo, 1994) is a Professor of Management at the College of Business, California State University San Marcos (CSUSM). She is also Executive Director and founding member of the Center for Leadership Innovation and Mentorship Building (CLIMB) at the university. Her areas of research interest are leadership and cross-cultural management. She has published her work on charismatic and transformational leadership, leadership and voting behavior, and cross-cultural differences in organizational justice in The Leadership Quarterly, Journal of Management, and the Journal of International Business Studies. She has also presented her work at regional, national and international conferences and serves on the Academy of Management Teaching Themes Committee. She has also co-edited two books, Teaching Leadership: Innovative Approaches for the 21st Century (2003) and Follower Perspectives on Leadership (2007) and is co-author of the 4th and 5th editions of Understanding Global Cultures with Martin J. Gannon. She serves on the editorial board of The Leadership Quarterly. Rajnandini Pillai has held mid level management positions in the banking industry in India, consulted with organizations in the U.S. on leadership effectiveness, and conducted workshops on leadership and global issues for the local business community. She has received awards for excellence in teaching and research including the College of Business Outstanding Professor Award, the Western Academy of Management Ascendant Scholar Award, the CSUSM President’s Award for Scholarship and Creative Activity, and CSUSM’s highest faculty honor, the Harry E. Brakebill Distinguished Professor Award. -- Maureen Bickley Center
Published By: SAGE Publications, Thousand
Oaks, CA, 2015
"In the fully updated Sixth Edition of Understanding Global Cultures: Metaphorical Journeys Through 34 Nations, Clusters of Nations, Continents, and Diversity, authors Martin J. Gannon and Rajnandini Pillai present the cultural metaphor as a method for understanding the cultural mindsets of individual nations, clusters of nations, continents, and diversity in each nation. A cultural metaphor is any activity, phenomenon, or institution that members of a given culture consider important and with which they identify emotionally and/or cognitively, such as the Japanese garden and American football. This cultural metaphoric approach identifies three to eight unique or distinctive features of each cultural metaphor and then discusses 34 national cultures in terms of these features. The book demonstrates how metaphors are guidelines to help outsiders quickly understand what members of a culture consider important."
"In summary, this is a significant book . . . for a multitude of audiences, including scholars, practitioners, students, expatriates, travelers, and those who are simply interested in culture. . . . This book is also an ideal reference tool, since the metaphors are easy to remember yet rich in contextual value and are presented in a logical structure for quick consultation. Overall, this book is enormously appealing, genuinely useful, and a worthy addition to any collection." -- Thunderbird International Business Review (reviewing the Third Edition)
"In Understanding Global Cultures, Fourth Edition, authors Martin J. Gannon and Rajnandini Pillai present the cultural metaphor as a method for understanding the cultural mindsets of individual nations, clusters of nations, and even continents. The fully updated Fourth Edition continues to emphasize that metaphors are guidelines to help outsiders quickly understand what members of a culture consider important. This new edition includes a new part structure, three completely new chapters, and major revisions to chapters on American football, Russian ballet, and the Israeli kibbutz.'
This book describes a method, the cultural
metaphor, for understanding easily and quickly the cultural mindset of
a nation and comparing it to those of other nations. In essence, the method
involves identifying some phenomenon, activity or institution of a nation’s
culture that all or most of its members consider to be very important
and which they identify closely. Metaphors are not stereotypes. Rather,
they rely upon the features of one critical phenomenon in a society to
describe the entire society. The characteristics of the metaphor then
become the basis for describing and understanding the essential features
of the society. For example, the Italians invented the opera and love
it passionately. Five key characteristics of the opera are the overture,
spectacle and pageantry, voice, exteriority, and the interaction between
the lead singers and the chorus. These features are used to describe Italy
and its cultural mindset. Thus the metaphor is a guide or map that helps
the student of foreigner understand quickly what members of a society
consider to be very important.
The generic types of cultural frameworks developed by Triandis
and Fiske, and the torn and cleft culture framework developed by Huntington,
form the underpinning of the book. These frameworks allow the reader to
gain new insight into various cultural metaphors and to begin to address
the challenging issue of integrating cultural and economic perspectives.