Contact Zone

588 Words Oct 12th, 2015 3 Pages
Mary Louise Pratt defined contact zones as “social spaces where cultures meet, clash, and grapple with each other, often in contexts of highly asymmetrical relations of power, such as colonialism, slavery, or their aftermaths as they are lived out in many parts of the world today.” A contact zone is a place where two cultures can mesh together. People from different cultures are able to interact with each other through these contact zones. A contact zone allows people to look into cultures other than their own. They can get new ideas by looking into another culture, as well as their own. Contact zones allow you to look at things in a new way. Pratt talks about contact zones being seen more and more today. People may have to look beyond how …show more content…
In school, students can take information from their teacher. They can go through the information and change it to make it easier for them to understand. The teacher and the student may have different ways of explaining or learning about the same thing. In this example the teacher would be the dominant “group.”
Pratt uses many examples. She talks about her kids as examples. On page 326 she said, “when speakers are from different classes or cultures, or one party is exercising authority and another is submitting to it or questioning is.” One of the examples she uses is a classroom. In a classroom you are with people from many different backgrounds. While being a classroom many different cultures can mesh together.
A community has similar things. They can live in the same place, have similar characteristics, or share the same interests and goals. They are not exactly the same, but they have similarities. A contact zone is not like that. A contact zone could be a classroom that has people from all different cultures. They are trying to learn together and work together by putting together their different thoughts and ideas.
All in all, when a contact zone is being used people are able to break a boundary. They can look at an idea from both cultures. Contact zones allow people to gain new knowledge because they are able to interact with people