Today, three years have passed since the death of Edward T. Hall, an American anthologist and cultural researcher.
His work on nonverbal communication was groundbreaking at the time but today is accepted as normal in the world of anthropology. His legacy as an anthropologist is immense – however, his legacy to the ‘new comers’ – the interculturalists – is inspirational. Much of the work we do in the field of intercultural studies, cross-cultural communication and cultural diversity has its base firmly planted in the foundations of the understanding and insights he laid down.
Eric Hall said his father loved to make people aware of the unconscious processes that affect people’s perceptions and help them figure out why others perceive things differently than they do. And, that’s just what the job of an interculturalist is. Without him we might well not have this profession at all. He also excelled in making tricky things understandable by simplifying them – and that’s what we TRY to do. It will be difficult to follow in his footsteps and he will be missed.
In highlighting the difference between Americans and South Asians he said:
” The future for us is the foreseeable future. The South Asian, however, feels that it is perfectly realistic to think of a ‘long time’ in terms of thousands of years. “