Contact Mailing List
Japan Intercultural Consulting

Home
About JIC
Services
Clients
News & Articles
Events
Blogs
English Skills
Store
Contact Us


Japanese Business Culture Blog

A blog about communications between Japan and other cultures, particularly in business.



JIC Blogs by Author

To read blogs by specific members select from the list below:





Comments

The comment function for this blog is being hosted in our Japan Intercultural Consulting group on LinkedIn. Please join our group and participate in the discussion.



JIC Blogs by Category

To read blogs by specific categories select from the list below:

Book reviews
Business travel to Japan
Foreign firms in Japan
Gaijin in Japan
Human resource management
Japanese business
Japanese companies
Japanese culture
Japanese etiquette
Japanese firms in Africa
Japanese firms in Asia Pacific
Japanese firms in China
Japanese firms in Europe
Japanese firms in India
Japanese firms in Latin America
Japanese firms in N. America
Japanese firms in the Mideast
Japanese management
Japanese manufacturing
Japanese society
Japanese startups
Learning Japanese
Movies
Teambuilding with Japanese
Websites of interest
Working with Japanese


President Obama's bow to the emperor
Misako Onoda
Nov 20, 2009 01:05 PM
In Japan, we say "when America sneezes, Japan catches a cold".

The bow of president Obama was not discussed much in japan at first, but the newspapers reported that "It seems like President Obama is apologizing for something" in America.

The picture shows President Obama bowing while shaking hands. As a Japanese who did not experience WW2, I warmly welcomed the picture.
Surely it looks a bit odd since President Obama made the profound bow mandated by Japanese etiquette while meeting an emperor, while shaking hand which is western style.
It may not make him look like a ”Great Man", but it makes him look like a nice person.

Why do you have to make yourself "look better" or "look great"?
The previous President who flaunted his power seemed rather comical in Japanese eyes.

When I was living in Europe or in NY people sometimes greeted me with words such as "Oh Ninja!" or "Samurai!" while gesturing a Karate move.
I have also experienced some people greeting me Thai style with hands clasped in prayer, even though I am not Thai.

These may not be a well-mannered or adequate etiquette, but I like these communication styles, as they are sincere attempts at connection.

Bookmark and Share

 

   
 
Privacy Policy