From high-level business negotiations to casual conversations among friends, every interpersonal interaction is shaped by cultural norms and expectations. Seldom is this more clearly brought to light than in encounters between people from different cultural backgrounds, when dissimilar communication practices may lead to frustration and misunderstanding. This thought-provoking text presents a new framework for understanding the impact of culture on communication and for helping students build intercultural communication competence. With illustrative examples from around the globe, the book shows that verbal and nonverbal communication involves much more than transmitting a particular message--it also reflects each participant's self-image, group identifications and values, and privacy and relational needs. Readers learn to move effectively and appropriately through a wide range of transcultural situations by combining culture-specific knowledge with mindful listening and communication skills. Throughout, helpful tables and charts and easy-to-follow guidelines for putting concepts into practice enhance the book's utility for students.