Never Say Please to Mother

The clash between Chinese and Swedish table manners highlights how different cultures define politeness and intimacy. Dr. Martin Rundkvist of Aardvarchaeology is married to a Chinese immigrant to Sweden. Her life entails switching back and forth between being polite to those with whom you are familiar and reserving formal manners to those to whom you are not particularly close. This shows how much more there is to learn about a culture than just the language! Commenters at the post add their experiences in how other cultures would react. Link

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Similar to my experience in Korea. In Korean you use Formal Polite when talking to anyone older than yourself, Informal when talking to someone younger than yourself, but with friends it can be hard to gauge when you're good enough friends to switch from Polite to Informal. (It changes how you conjugate verbs and adjectives, and even some vocabulary choices.)
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also in the chinese culture you will undoubtedly have notice table manners in formal situations are totally different, no elbow rules... but taking the first or last thing on a plate without being directed to is totally unkosher... like wise with accepting gifts, they must always be refused then offered once more or even several times before really being accepted, and its rather rude to open wrapped gifts in front of others (even the bearer)... feels quite odd when giving gifts...
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I love being Chinese since it is acceptable to eat messily. It's actually considered a compliment to the chef. Nice for me since I'm such a klutz.
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It is considered very rude to put your hands under the table (like in your lap) in Germany.
Germany seems to have won the weird cultural customs competition.
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