Field Experience A feedback on the movie “Bend it like Beckham” -------From the perspective of Cross-cultural communication ?? :?????? ?? :??? ?? :201120327 ?? :2011? 10? 11? A feedback on the movie “Bend it like Beckham” -------From the perspective of Cross-cultural communication Abstract: Based on the English movie “Bend It like Beckham”, this paper is going to reveal the cultural phenomenon hidden in this story. Divided into three parts, this paper mainly makes an analysis on two aspects, one is religion, and another is family culture.
Finally, the author points out: it is very important for people of different cultures to understand and respect each other. Thus, a peaceful and harmonious world would be around us! 1. Introduction and analysis of the movie: Before the 1980s, African culture and Asian culture got terrible restriction in UK, however, after the 1980s; a large number of movies that describe immigrants’ life have emerged in film industry in England. Bend It like Beckham” is such a movie, which borrows cultural and racial difference between England and India, reflects how the two cultures co-exist and accept each other in a hard procedure As the immigrant of the second generation, Jess, a girl with talent to be a football player, shows her great admiration to Beckham,hoping, one day, she can play for England with Beckham shoulder by shoulder, while her mother believes that Jess has two great duties in life: to learn to prepare a complete Indian meal, and to marry a nice Indian boy.
However, Jess never wants to be a housewife who can only cook. Jess’ love of soccer crosses over into a love of life. She runs onto the field as if simply at play, in her eyes’, football is not one part of aboard culture,but a natural thing in her living environment,however, it was not included in her clan and family culture,therefore, what she has to confront is the strait of the cultural conflicts caused by two co-existing culture. In fact, “Bend It like Beckham” is a product of cultural clash.
One day, Jess was playing soccer with boys in the park; Of course, an Indian girl should not play soccer at all, since in her mother's mind the game consists of "displaying your bare legs to complete strangers. " Jess is seen in the park by Juliette, who plays for the Hounslow Harriers, a woman's team, and is recruited to join them. The coach is a young Irishman named Joe. Although she deceives her parents about her join into the football team, she loves them and understands their point of view.
The cultural conflict is still upgrading when Jess falls in love with her coach,, which is undoubtedly an earthquake for Indian family, but, at the end of this movie, we can feel hope, the two family members shake their hands together, and Jess’s boyfriend begin to play cricket together. It seems that, English people are being accepted by Indian family. And the old Indian people get out from the dark shadow in their heart. Historically speaking, India was the colony of England for a long time, English people usually were gentlemen, but they look down upon Indian people.
Jess’s father was a excellent cricket player, owing to cultural diffusion,he lost the chance to play cricket , fortunately, Jess got her family’s support and realized her father’s dream. Then, in the following part, I will give a detailed analysis about cultural differences under the influence of two different tradition and religion, 2. Cultural analysis 2. 1. Culture and family Although, a culture’s core values and world view derive primarily from its predominant religious view and cultural history, the family is the primary caretaker of these views and values and transmits them to new members of the culture.
In this story, there are two families, the representatives of the two cultures, one is the ordinary England family, observed from the surface, and it is an open, modern, and fashioned family. However, In this story, Juliette’s mother misreads Jess and Juliette’s friendship as lesbian, so painful that she cried secretly, according to her attitude toward lesbian, we will realize English people is conservative in soul. The other one is an emigrate family from India, Indian parents are strict and traditional, they have strong religious belief. Which indicate what kind of Jess’s family is.
As expected, it is incredible and unsupportable for a girl playing football. Family gives children knowledge about their historical background, information regarding the permanent nature of their culture, and specific behaviors, customs, traditions, and language associated with their ethnic or cultural group. In short, the family tells us, and others, who we are and what groups we are part of. ( K. A. Ocampo, 1993, 106). So next, I will render the different interaction pattern in English family and Indian family from two aspects: gender role and individualism- collectivism 2. . 1. gender role In India, males are usually considered the superior sex, as Samovar points out, men make most of the important decisions, inheriantance is through the male line, and a woman lives in her husband’s village after she marries. (Samovar, 2000,). Therefore, in India, boys give much freedom of expression than the girls, and girls are asked to help with the chores that keep the family functioning. However, in British, women usually have the equal right as man does in family life, even in social activity. 2. 1. 2. ndividualism and collectivism Individualism and collectivism are learned through the family, which teaches children whom they must obey and who the dominant figures are in their life. In this movie, the Juliette from English nuclear family is much more self-reliant and self-responsible than Jess who from Indian Family, because, India is a typical country of extended family, people in India, share property, all material possession, food, work and love, perform religious rituals together, and often live under the same roof.
There is a scene in this movie: when her sister’s would-be parents-in-law discovered her intimate behavior with Juliette whom was mistaken for a English boy,. Just because of Jess’s so-called “shameful behavior”, they break off her son’s engagement with Jess’s family according this story, it’s not difficult to get conclusion that India family is a typical collectivism; one people’s thing is the thing of the whole family. 2. 2. Culture and Religion: In this movie, you will find lots of religious elements in the story, to some extent, cross-religious communication is the cross-cultural communication. When religion jumps to life it displays a startling quality. It takes over. All else, while not silenced, becomes subdued and thrown into a supporting role…It calls the soul to the highest adventure it can undertake, a proposed journey across the jungles, peaks, and deserts of the human spirit (H. Smith, 1991, P9). So, from different religions, we can understand different people’s spiritual and psychological needs or their behavior and habits, here, taking the Sikhism as example, we will have a better understanding of Jess’s family, Sikhs, followers of the Sikh religion, centered in Punjab State, in northwestern India.
Sikhism is an ethical monotheism fusing elements of Hinduism and Islam. It was founded around 1950s, In Jess’s family's living room is a large portrait of a Sikh spiritual leader, called Nanak, but above Jess's bed is her own inspiration--the British soccer superstar David Beckham, and there is a distinctive contrast between Indian traditional belief and modern British cultural shock.
According this story, it’s not difficult to get conclusion that it is incredible for Indian people to get married with a pagan or people without same belief, but, in British, Christianity is the dominant world view. In this land, it is not a easy job to infuse with the native Indian Sikh religion, and vice versa. Conclusion England is the birthplace of modern football game, English people’s enthusiasm to football caused football culture’s coming into being, which exactly stands for the national culture. While India is a country of dances and songs.
The scene of Indian jolly wedding with dance and song in this movie is just the epitome of Indian culture. Young people always can accept new things easily, in this movie; it is the two girls who play the role of fusion of two cultures. There indeed are some cultural shocks during people’s communication around the world, no matter which aspect it is, religion, ethnic, family or something else. Now that we live in the same earth, it is very important for people of different cultures to understand and respect each other.
Thus, a peaceful and harmonious world would be around us! References . K. A. Ocampo, M. Bernal, G. P. Knight, (1993) “Gender, Race, and Ethnicity: The Sequencing of Social Constrancies,” New York: New York Press. . Samovar, A. l. , Porter, R. E. ,& Stefani, A. L. (2000) Communication Between Cultures(Third Edition). Beijing: Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press . H. Smith, (1991)The World’s Religions. New York: HarperCollins.