Cultural discourses of privacy: Interrogating globalized workplace relationships in Japan
Using Carbaugh’s (2005. Cultures in conversation. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum; 2007. Cultural discourse analysis: Communication practices and intercultural encounters. Journal of Intercultural Communication Research, 36(3), 167–182) cultural discourse analysis and Petronio’s (2002. Boundaries of privacy: Dialectics of disclosure. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press) Communication Privacy Management (CPM) Theory, this study highlights four cultural premises that garner intercultural privacy management between foreign English language teachers (ELTs) and Japanese coworkers (JCWs) in Japan. The analysis revealed that ELTs: (a) expected not to be a “free space” for privacy inquisition by JCWs, and (b) expected voluntary reciprocity in (egalitarian) workplace relationships. JCWs viewed: (a) privacy inquisitions as acts of kindness/caring and (b) soliciting help from a supervisor as providing opportunities for better care. This study calls for attention to intercultural privacy management and enhances CPM’s cultural criteria.