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Understanding Intercultural Communication by Adrian Holliday

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Chapter 1

The grammar of culture

The book will be driven by the grammar of culture, which is represented in Figure 1.1. As linguistic grammar provides a structure which enables us to read sentences, the grammar of culture provides a structure which enables us to read cultural events. However, it is also an invention – a map which can guide us. This map must never be mistaken for the real terrain, which is too complex and deep to be mapped too accurately. Throughout this book, whenever mentioned, the items of the grammar are in bold.

With this unfathomable complexity in mind, the grammar is characterised by loose relationships which represent a conversation between the different domains. This conversation is sometimes harmonious and sometimes ...

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