A Long Distance Dialogue between Cultures

Learning is a unique process. The listening process during learning goes two ways, not only the students will need to listen to lecturers, but the lecturers need to listen to their students too. This reciprocal listening process makes learning feels wholefull, active, and memorable. The same thing happened to the public lecture which was held on Friday, 11th November 2022. The main topic in this lecture is intercultural learning. The title of the lecture is "Public Lecture: Virtual Intercultural Method" which focuses on learning methods that raise intercultural topics. In highlighting these cultural differences, the learning process that has been carried out uses a process in the form of virtual sharing using a video conferencing platform. The sharing was carried out by several people representing different cultures.

Not only special topic, this lecture also invites special guests who have been diving into this topic for a long time. The guest came all the way from Japan to Indonesia to specifically sharing his research and knowledge regarding intercultural material at Sanata Dharma University. He is David Dalsky, Ph.D, an associate professor at Kyoto University. David is an American who has been working in Japan since 2004. His background in psychology plus his postgraduate degree in social psychology encouraged him to explore cultures through the languages ​​of several countries. His latest research is the integration of English language education with a shared understanding of emic cultural concepts in Javanese, Balinese, Chinese Mandarin, Deutsch and Japanese.
This public lecture was held with the aim of introducing students to the importance of awareness of intercultural concepts. Each individual requires the growth of curiosity and sensitivity to individual cultural identity. Through the process of discussing the different meanings of several words from various cultures, individuals unconsciously realize how unique intercultural learning is from an outsider's point of view or people outside the culture. The interaction of a person with a different culture increases curiosity about his own culture. In other words, intercultural learning is also able to increase recognition and pride in one's own culture.

The event started at 11.30 WIB with the Dean of the Faculty of Psychology, Yohannes Babtista Cahya Widiyanto, introducing the speaker in front of students in the classroom. Mr. David then began to present the material using power point. He also introduced a site where he uploaded his essays and several animations and illustrations to make material explanation easier. During the presentation of the material, the students were enthusiastically in responding to several questions and statements from Mr. David. Towards the end of the lecture, Mr. David gave group assignments consisting of 2-3 students to find unique words in various languages ​​that explain a certain unique concept. Students write their answers in the google docs provided by Mr. David. After about 15 minutes of work been, Mr. David asked a pair of students to come forward to explain their findings. They explained the meaning of a Javanese word, sawan and this explanation sparked deeper curiosity from Mr. David. Unfortunately, due to the duration of the lecture, Mr. David had to close the class and saying matur nuwun to all students. The lecture ended with the whole class showing their appreciation towards Mr. David for the presentation.

This activity was able to bring enthusiasm from various circles, as seen from the scale of the audience who took part alongside those who have requested for the lecture to be livestreamed. As intriguing topics accompanied by experienced speakers will make this event special. Even though the duration of the lecture was limited, it is hoped that the presentation regarding intercultural topic will spark the curiosity of psychology students at Sanata Dharma University to dive and explore more knowledge related to culture. Not only about one's own culture, but everybody should be open towards learning about other culture in order to improve oneself.

Regina Audrey , Lintangswasti , Yulisa