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|Title:||Grappling With a New Culture: Dynamic Courses of Action and Cognition of Indonesian University Students in Japan|
|Doctoral Committee Chair(s):||Hill, Jacquetta|
|Department / Program:||Education|
|Degree Granting Institution:||University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign|
|Subject(s):||Education, Bilingual and Multicultural
|Abstract:||This ethnographic study investigated the experiences of Indonesians who, after having learned to be adept in their first (and maybe second) culture in Indonesia, coped with a new culture in Japan as university students. It confirmed the importance of focusing on individuals in studying culture (Goodenough, 1981). In addition, this study clarified the possible processes by which culture becomes shared yet remains flexible, allowing individual differences in its internalization (D'Andrade, 1981). People's experience with a culture is complex, dynamic, and personal, as well as shared. Furthermore, understanding social situations and cultural practices in Indonesia as well as those in Japan was crucial for unveiling the processes of Indonesians coping with a new culture. Clarifying those contexts in the description and analysis of the events, together with the focus at an individual level of thought and action, enabled this study to examine the dynamic courses of action and cognition by Indonesian students grappling with a new culture in Japan.
The notion of the "cultural model" (Holland & Quinn, 1987) was used to refer to an individual's organized knowledge (with embedded emotions), which frames his understandings about experiences and guides his action. It was found that some cultural models work as goals, helping to explain how individual Indonesians were motivated to act in certain ways (D'Andrade, 1992). In recent literature the concept of "constructed knowledge" is often used, but too loosely. This study unveiled the process of construction of knowledge in cognitive terms of elaboration, tuning, restructuring, and creation in the Indonesians' situated experiences.
Typically Indonesians participated in various situated activities (Lave & Wenger, 1991) and gained enough knowledge to become adept in their surroundings, interpreting experience and transforming ideas to understand events and experiences in the new settings coherently (Agar, 1986). Each person selected those subgoals and activities that were truly feasible, worthy, and relevant to achieving the major goal (Anderson, 1980, 1985), earning an advanced degree or certificate. Priorities among subgoals shifted and changed as specific events challenged initial understandings about which measures were essential to gain the major objective of their sojourn in Japan.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1993.
|Date Available in IDEALS:||2014-12-16|