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Cultural differences between Chinese and Western table manners

- Mar 10, 2018 -

1. the most basic difference between Chinese and western table manners is how to put the tableware. Knives and forks and chopsticks not only bring the difference in eating habits, but also affect the living concept of the East and the West. People can not play with chopsticks when eating, you can not use chopsticks to point to people or sign gestures. Usually before eating, the chopsticks in China should be placed on the right side of the bowl and must be placed neatly on both ends. If you use chopsticks to finish the dishes during the meal, they don't eat continuously, and the chopsticks should be neatly upright in the middle of the bowl. In tableware placement, the common rules of western countries are: "the saucers in the middle, left is fork, knife is right.

2.the seating arrangements. Chinese traditionally like to use square table to entertain guests. The seat facing the door is the best position .The elderly, or high-ranking people would have this seat. In the west, usually, the position of the table is determined by the distance from the position to the main table. Base on the master's table, right means high, left is low, near is high, and far is low. Westerners treat with a long table, hosts sit in the owner at both ends. For Chinese, the left seat is more important than right; On the contrary, in the west, respect for the right, leftfor the times.  

3.the order of courses. The Chinese food order: the first is an appetizer, usually four kinds of cold dishes of assorted cold dishes. The main course after appetizer, also known as the big meal, "the number of main course is usually four, six, eight and even, because even numbers are seemed as lucky number." Dessert refers to the desserts supplied after the end of the main dish, such as pies, cakes, bun, almond bean curd, etc. The last is the fruit. On the contrary, "There are four or five categories on the menu of Western food, which are appetizers, soup, salad, seafood, meat, dessert and so on." The official serving order: appetizer,it generally has special flavor, taste with a small number and high quality. Soup is the second dish. The soup of Western food can be divided into 4 kinds, such as clear soup, cream soup, vegetable soup and cold soup. Vice dishes, fish dishes generally serve as the third dishes in Western, also known as auxiliary dishes. The main dishes, meat and poultry dishes are the fourth dishes of Western food, also known as the main course. Next is the dessert ,which is eaten after the main dish, can be counted as sixth dishes, such as Boudin, pancake, ice cream, cheese, fruit and so on. The last is drinks,maybe coffee or tea.  

4. the dining atmosphere. Chinese like to talk loudly during the meal.There is always lively atmosphere . As soon as the Westerners sat down to the table, they were devoted to the quiet cutting of their own dishes. Drinking soup can not make noise, shut up when eating chewing, do not lick their lips, chewing food do not speak, even if someone speak to you, but also to answer after swallowing. You can talk to the left and right guests when you eat, but don't just talk to a few acquaintances only. If the guests do not know, they can first introduce themselves, others can not talk in their speech, the volume to keep the other person can hear the extent.


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