Culture and Identity in Study Abroad Contexts
After Australia, French without France
Year of Publication: 2007
Oxford, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Wien, 2007. 332 pp.
ISBN 978-3-03911-082-7 pb. (Softcover)
ISBN 978-3-0353-0283-7 (eBook)
Weight: 0.500 kg, 1.102 lbs
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This book examines the effects of a study abroad experience on students' culture and identity and the impact of these effects on their readjustment to their home culture. It explores issues of culture and identity from the perspective of French students studying in Australia. Issues of perceived cultural proximity between France and Australia, a relative lack of prior knowledge of the host country before the period of study and the impact of distance all influence aspects of these students' experiences. Employing long-term and cross-sectional studies focusing on culture shock, reverse culture shock and cultural identity issues, the author investigates the cyclical journey of French academic sojourners and examines the impact of the acculturation and repatriation processes and the language experiences on their perceptions of cultural identity. Once the students had traversed the difficult stages of culture shock and reached the stage of full recovery (adjustment), they no longer wished to go home. What impact has this process had on the returnees who faced the insularity of their home society once they returned home? Is the French community beginning to acknowledge the start of a brain-drain of the educated French overseas? What are the implications for borderless higher education? What value should be placed on pre-departure preparation from participating institutions and the individuals themselves, both on a linguistic and a psychological level? This book poses questions relating to these issues.
Contents: Acculturation in Australia - Elements from Australian culture occasioning stress for French sojourners - The effects of negative stereotypical images on intercultural relations - Successful adjustment in Australian society by French sojourners - Reverse culture shock and interpersonal relationship issues - Reverse culture shock and reactions to culture learning - Employment and academic issues and reverse culture shock - The vicissitudes of identity of French academic sojourners - Identity crises correlating with being in transit in France - Identity and successful readjustment of returnees.
About the author(s)/editor(s)
The Author: Marie-Claire Patron is Assistant Professor and Head of French and Spanish at Bond University, Australia. She has a background in education through teaching languages in Australia and in France and Spain. In Spain, she had industrial experience in business, law, banking and the building industry making extensive use of her skills in interpreting and translation. Her degrees are from Victoria, Queensland and South Australia and her publications are based on intercultural relations, sociolinguistics and second language acquisition.
Cultural Identity Studies. Vol. 4
Edited by Helen Chambers