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美版知乎:谈一谈中西文化的主要差异

What are the major differences between Chinese and Western cultures?

中西文化的主要差异是什么?

以下是Quora读者的评论:

Gabriella Crystal Hendricks, studied at Northwest University

I'm sorry for taking so long to answer this question. I thought a lot about this question. And I don't want to answer a question Bc I have to, I want to answer a question Bc I have my own experience and opinion about it.

很抱歉花了这么长时间来回答这个问题。关于这个问题我想了很多。我不想回答一个我不得不回答的问题,我想回答的是我拥有自己经验和观点的问题。

About money: Chinese people love to share their financial situation with people. And sometimes people will ask you how much money you make every month. Not Bc they care, Bc they want to compare and to see who make more money.

关于金钱:中国人喜欢和别人分享他们的财务状况。有时人们会问你每个月挣多少钱。不是因为他们关心,而是因为他们想互相攀比,看谁赚的钱更多。

For westerners, it's not polite to ask people's financials. Bc it's none of others business.

对西方人来说,询问别人的财务状况是不礼貌的行为。这不关别人的事。

About spending money: Chinese likes saving money instead of spending. For example, we decorate our house for living, not for feelings. We don't buy extra useless stuff to make our home look beautiful. We buy stuff to use, not for looking. As long as it's still working, we don't get a new one to replace it.

关于消费:中国人更喜欢存钱,而不是花钱。例如,我们装饰房子是为了生活,而不是为了感受。我们不会购买多余的无用之物来装点我们的家。我们买东西是出于实用,不是为了欣赏。只要东西还能用,就不会买新的来代替它。

For westerners: people like to make their home cozy and beautiful, sometimes they buy candles and decorations to put it on the table to make it look better.

对西方人来说:人们喜欢把他们的家装饰得舒适漂亮,有时他们会买蜡烛和装饰品放在桌子上,让桌子更好看。

About who pay the bill: for Chinese people, the elder,the male,the staff instead of the boss, the one who asked people out.

关于谁来买单:对中国人来说,买单的人是长辈,是男性,是员工而不是老板,是邀请别人出去的人。

For westeners: ALWAYS PAY FOR YOURSELF

对于西方人来说:总是为自己买单

About dating: for Chinese boys, if a boy likes a girl, he would get her number and talk to her, maybe flirt with her and ask her out sometimes without telling the girl that he likes her, if he "felt"the same way, then he will tell her that he likes her and asks her to be his gf. Then if everything goes well, after they became bf and gf,they will go on dates. But sometimes, girls just don't get it. For example, one of my friend gave me medicine when I had a cold. I was grateful about that, but I didn't have a second thought.. We didn't talk that much, I didn't know him that well, he didn't know me well either. One night, he told me that he liked a girl and he didn't know if he should let her know, I was like sure, why not, the chance is fifty-fifty. So later that night, he sent me a message like he wants me to be his gf. I was totally shocked. So I told him that I was busy at doing my homework and I'll talk to him later. He probably thought I was going to turn him down,so after couple days,I told him that I don't him that much, I can't be his gf. And he texted me back said: I was kidding! So I said that I was kidding too. He was trying to save his dignity. But the truth is I don't even know who he is. But for him, it's about I look down on him Bc he's not good Enough. That's not true. It's just Bc I don't know him well Enough. I don't like his personality either.

关于约会:对于中国男孩,如果一个男孩喜欢一个女孩,他会要到她的电话号码,跟她聊天,也许和她调情,有时候邀她出门,不会急着跟她说他喜欢她,如果他“感到”女孩对他也有同样的感觉,那么他就会告诉她,自己喜欢她,问她愿不愿意做自己的女朋友。如果一切顺利,在他们成为男女朋友之后,他们会继续约会。但有时候,女孩子就是不明白男孩的心意。例如,我的一个朋友在我感冒时给我送来了药。我对此很感激,但我没有多想。我们互动不多,我不太了解他,他也不太了解我。一天晚上,他告诉我他喜欢一个女孩,他不知道是否应该让她知道,我说,当然,为什么不呢,起码有一半成功的机会。所以那天晚上晚些时候,他给我发了一条信息,说想请我做他的女朋友。我完全震惊了。所以我告诉他我正忙着做作业,晚点再和他谈。他可能以为我会拒绝他,所以几天后,我告诉他我不喜欢他,不能做他的女朋友。他回我短信说:我是开玩笑的!所以我说我也在开玩笑。他试图挽回自己的脸面。但事实是,我甚至连他是谁都不知道。但对他来说,是因为我看不起他,因为他不够好。可那不是事实。只是我还不够了解他。我也不喜欢他的个性。

For westerners: ask a girl out that makes a date and both of them know it. They gets to know each other through the dates.then they establish a relationship. If it doesn't work out, no hard feelings.

对西方人来说:约女孩出门就算约会,双方都清楚这一点。他们通过约会了解彼此。然后他们建立起情侣关系。即便约会不成功,也不会难过。

 

Thomas Pauken II, Reporter at Freelance Entrepeneur (2014-present)

I can speak from experience since I have lived in Beijing, China for the past 10 years. There are some major cultural differences but I’ve noticed remarkable similarities as well.

因为我在中国北京生活了10年,所以我可以以自己的经验来说说。中西方有一些明显的文化差异,但我也注意到一些显著的相似之处。

Outside China, few people have awareness of the good traits of the Chinese people because the Western media has portrayed the country in a very negative light. Therefore, many people think the Chinese are bad; but for those who lived in China for awhile or have gotten to know the Chinese they will discover they are good people too.

在中国以外的地方,很少有人意识到中国人的优点,因为西方媒体对中国的描述非常负面。因此,许多人认为中国人不好;但对于那些在中国生活过一段时间或已经了解中国人的人来说,他们也会发现中国人也是好人。

We should never ignore human nature and that all people have good and bad attributes, they have talents along with strengths and weaknesses in their characters. Some people are good at drawing paintings while others can writes amazing stories. Each person is unique.

我们不应该忽视人之本性,所有的人都有好有坏,他们有天赋,也有优缺点。有些人擅长绘画,而另一些人可以写出惊世之作。每个人都是独一无二的。

Nonetheless, the countries and families they were born into can also impact their behaviors, attitudes, actions and mindsets. But that’s not to say all Chinese are the same as their fellow citizens while you can’t say the Americans are all the same either.

然而,人们托生的国家和家庭也会影响他们的行为、态度、行动和心态。但这并不是说所有的中国人都和他们的同胞一样,同样的,你也不能说所有美国人都一样。

But overall, many Chinese are very forgiving people and pragmatists. I have only met a few Chinese who are diehard stubborn or perfectionists so when mistakes happen they are quick to forgive and seek to move forward without feeling long-held animosity against the person who made the mistake, so long as they understand it was an unintentional act.

In the same vein, many Americans have a similar nature as “forgive and forget” people. You can fight them one day and after matters are resolved they go back to being your friend the next day. For Americans and the Chinese, the mistakes and fights are just normal occurrences in our daily lives, so we should not allow it to ruin our outlooks.

但总的来说,许多中国人是非常宽容的人,是实用主义者。我只接触过几个中国人,他们要么顽固、要么固执,要么就是完美主义者,所以当出现什么差错时,只要他们知道这是无心之过,就会迅速原谅、翻篇,不会对犯错的人长期抱着敌意。

同样,许多美国人也具有这种“既往不咎”的性格。你可以和他们斗上一天,当事情解决后,他们第二天又会成为你的朋友。对于美国人和中国人来说,犯错和争斗只是我们日常生活中常见的事情,所以我们不应该让它毁了我们的人生观。

But the biggest cultural difference between Americans and the Chinese would be on the issue of patience. Americans are very impatient and proud of it. They think impatience can connote assertiveness, hard work ethic, proactive and dominant personality.

Whereas the Chinese are much better at patience, willing to wait, wait and wait. And if necessary, they can wait, wait and wait some more without feeling anxious or troublesome. From their perspective an impatient person can not control their emotions and are easy targets to exploit when negotiating deals or settling arguments.

但是美国人和中国人之间最大的文化差异在于耐心。美国人很没有耐心,并以此为荣。他们认为,缺乏耐心可能意味着自信、勤奋、积极主动和强势的个性。

They just wait for the other side to say. “I can’t wait any longer” and they swoop in and suddenly announce their demands in a “take it or leave it” framework. That’s the brilliance of Chinese culture, but the weakness in this strategy is that sometimes patience does not pay off.

他们只会等着对方说“我等不下去了”,然后突然冲进来,宣称他们的要求“要么接受要么放弃”。这就是中国文化的光辉之处,但这种策略的弱点在于,有时耐心是没有回报的。

Many Americans view the patient person as slow-witted, lazy and weak; while many Chinese think impatient people are foolhardy, rude and unstable of mind. But a good point would be for Americans and the Chinese to look at each other in a more sympathetic manner.

许多美国人认为有耐心的人是迟钝、懒惰和软弱的;而许多中国人认为没有耐心的人是鲁莽,粗鲁的和不稳定的心态。但一个好的观点是,美国人和中国人应该以一种更惺惺相惜的态度看待彼此。

 

Isaiah Pablo

There’s lots of differences. Some are as follows.

有很多不同之处。有些如下。

Harmony - In ancient Chinese culture, harmony with the universe is emphasized. There’s an order of things that you ought to follow in order to be successful. That’s why China often preserved it’s natural resources because it realized how important it was for it’s survival. Western culture is about imposing your will. You make things happen. You have to work hard and achieve the impossible regardless of what happens. That’s why you often see nature being destroyed in western societies.

和谐—在中国古代文化中,强调与宇宙万物的和谐共处。为了成功,你必须遵循一系列的事情。这就是为什么中国经常保护它的自然资源,因为它已经意识到这对中国的生存是多么重要。西方文化就是把你的意志强加于人。无论发生什么事,你都要努力工作,实现不可能的目标。这就是为什么在西方社会你经常看到大自然被破坏的情况。

Individuality vs. Hierarchy - Chinese culture has a collectivist society. Conforming to a group is very important. They do what’s best for the family and it affects their careers, dating lives, list goes on. If a boss disrespects a Chinese person, he/she is expected to take the insult. Preserving harmony and knowing your place in society is more important than yourself. This isn’t the case in Western culture. The person is more important than a group. You have your own values, choices, opinions, etc.

个性与等级——中国文化是集体主义社会。服从集体是非常重要的。他们做对家庭最有利的事情,这影响了他们的事业,约会生活,等等。如果一个老板不尊重一个中国人,他/她将会受到非议。保持和谐和了解自己在社会中的地位比你自己更重要。但在西方文化中并非如此。个人比集体更为重要。你有自己的价值观、选择、观点等。

Success - In Western culture, success is defined by the outside world. Your self worth depends on your achievements and successes. In Chinese society, success is found inside of yourself. You find yourself by eliminating the “false” self and being self-aware. Virtue is highly valued.

成功—在西方文化中,成功是由外界定义的。你的自我价值取决于你的成就和成功。在中国社会,成功存在于你的内心。你通过消除“虚假的”自我和保持自我意识来发现你自己。美德受到人们的高度重视。

 

Jay Kim, studied Business Administration & Technology at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2001)

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The Fear of Failure and Challenging Authority

害怕失败和挑战权威

After having spent the last 12 years living over in Hong Kong, I finally feel more Asian than American. As an “American Born Korean” I grew up most of my life with a very western mentality and honestly I still don’t speak Korean very well.

在香港生活了12年后,我终于觉得自己更像亚洲人而不是美国人。作为一个“美国出生的韩国人”,我一生中大部分时间都是带着一种非常西式的思维方式长大的,说实话,我的韩语说得不是很好。

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