Thursday, June 20, 2013

Domesticism–The Forgotten Phase of Reverse Culture Shock

I am 6 months home from almost 3 years living in Asia. For a while I thought I was over my culture shock, but truth be told, I’m not so sure anymore. I’ve realized that I seem to be going through another phase of integration – or discovery; one that doesn’t appear to have a name or even a mention on any of the culture shock posts I’ve found online, so I am dubbing it domesticism. So what is domesticism? Well, in order for one to understand I need to give an introduction of the beginning stages of reverse culture shock (RCS) because I find that many people have quite simply never heard of this before. For those of you who have lived abroad and don’t feel like reading a tldr post, skip to the 3rd from last paragraph for my explanation of domesticism.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Experiences in Teaching – The Hardest Lecture of My Life

Last night* I gave the hardest lecture of my life. Perhaps I should have known it would be difficult. Perhaps it is best that I did not, or I may not have ever touched on this topic, as important as it is.

The topic was violence. The assigned reading was a chapter from their textbook on the cultural construction of violence. The week before my students turned in papers on interviews they conducted about identity. Having grown up largely sheltered from any seriously violent conflicts and coming off of grading these papers, I decided the best way for me to prepare for this lecture was to do the assignment myself. So I interviewed an Iraq war vet and presented the interview to my class.