• Elina Koliada
  • Iryna Kalynovska
Keywords: cross-cultural communication, language, culture, etiquette, American English, Ukrainian


This article considers cross-cultural communication between Americans and Ukrainians. Its purpose is to stress how Americans and Ukrainians think and express their thoughts, how they act interpersonally, and how they follow the many hidden rules that govern conduct. In today’s world, it is both valuable and necessary to be aware of intercultural differences. Cross-cultural communication refers to the communication between people who have different cultural backgrounds. Misunderstandings and problems between them primarily occur because they assume that what is natural, appropriate, and acceptable for them must be natural, appropriate, and acceptable to others. Different cultural assumptions may underlie different views on what is “polite” or “rude.” The authors draw attention to the most apparent and fundamental areas of cultural understanding breakdowns, which exist at the everyday level of life between native speakers of American English and Ukrainian. They point out that it is not enough to learn the language’s vocabulary and grammar to understand and be understood by native speakers. The mentality and world view of native speakers is crucial in choosing to use a particular word and the cultural context. The article covers the most basic discourse areas where breakdowns often occur in intercultural communication. They are: addressing people, meeting someone new, meeting and parting etiquette, and receiving guests.