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Write a formal report to observe and analyse whether characters in a video scenario (from the choices given below) are showing effective cultural capabilities and maintaining a culturally safe space. Also, recommend how effective cultural capabilities of the characters in the video could be improved.

  • Summarise and describe observations of the interactions related to aspects of cultural capabilities in the video clip.
  • Analyse (with formal references) the safe and unsafe aspects of the scenario,  including the physical location and interactions between actors.
  • Provide recommendations for creating or sustaining this video scenario as a culturally safe space.
  • Be written in a formal tone - avoid personal language, contractions and slang. (For more information, see link to formal writing in the Assessment Tasks Overview Summary Table.)
  • Identified an example of cultural intelligence from the video clip
  • Integrated a definition of cultural intelligence from one of her readings Explained how the behaviour in this example relates to the definition and the broader question for the report

Before writing: Brainstorm connections between developing cultural capabilities and creating safe spaces.

  • Write down the connections you identified in assessment 2 about cultural intelligence, and cultural self-awareness as they relate to developing cultural capabilities.
  • Think about what you have learned about cultural judgments: how do effective cultural judgments create productive safe spaces?
  • Some initial questions to prompt your thinking might include:

What is the relationship between cultural judgments and cultural empathy?

How do we negotiate and create safe spaces?

Whose responsibility is it to create and sustain these spaces?

Who could take an action to improve the situation being represented?

  • Jot down some key points (with references).
  • Review what an analysis is. Apply this technique to your video and readings to identify the links between, for example, cultural empathy and safe social and work settings.
  • Consider how the literature can help to explain and analyse your chosen film scene relating to work or social space applications.

Relationship between cultural judgments and cultural empathy

The report is focused on evaluating a given video in the context of cultural capabilities and safe cultural spaces. Cultural capability refers to the ability of people to understand people from diverse cultures and interact with them accordingly. Cultural safe places are spaces whether social, physical or emotional that help people to interact with people from different cultures without any cultural conflicts. The video being analyzed through the study is a part of an episode in the TV series named House. In the video cultural aspects connected with bilingualism and its significant implications are being depicted. Cultural capability, cultural self-awareness and cultural intelligence and its relation with the creation of cultural spaces are discussed and analyzed.

The aim of the study is to effectively study a video and evaluate the aspects of cultural capability to determine its significance in the context of creating safe spaces. The study further aims to find out the factors that are connected with the creation of the safe spaces. The connection of the reference video with the understanding of cultural capabilities are to be established.

The video considered for the study is a small part of an episode of House. The scene that will be discussed depicts a Chinese American teenage girl visiting the clinic of Dr. House and using the supposed unawareness of House for the Chinese language tries to unfairly prescribe birth control pills from House.

The video clip that is being considered is a scene from the episode of House. The scene will be used to analyze the significant aspects that are related to safe spaces. In this video the setting is a patient’s room in a large hospital (Singer, 2004, Nov 30). The scene depicts some issues that can be affected by bilingualism. The scene shows a teenage Chinese American girl with her Chinese mother. The girl translates her mother’s medical needs to Doctor House. She says her mother is suffering from a menstrual problem and needs birth control pills to relieve her pain. Dr. House quickly replies the her mother is actually suffering from just cold and she is wanting the birth control pills for her own requirement, taking advantage of her Mother not knowing English and Dr. House  not knowing Chinese. Dr. House however, provides her mother with the pills for cold and her with birth control pills. However, in another scene the girl returns with her mother and says that she has mixed up the pills and would like to get them again. Dr. House reveals that he knows Chinese and informs her mother about the entire matter and leaves the mother and daughter to quarrel. The entire scene takes place with these characters.

Creating and negotiating safe spaces

The behaviors of the people involved in the scene show significant levels of cultural gaps and low cultural capabilities. In the scene however, it can be seen that the doctor is quite aware of the issues that can be related to bilingualism. Dr. House shows good cultural understanding of the matter. Cultural capability requires people to develop essential skills to identify the significant cultural aspects of different people. Here, it can be seen that House quickly understands the cultural differences between him and the Chinese mother and daughter. The space is not culturally safe as the girl’s mother is unable to speak in English. The girl takes advantage of the same. The larger part of the video the woman is unaware of the meaning of any of the conversations that takes places between her daughter and House. A safe space is created when people from diverse cultures do not feel pressure while expressing their feelings and thoughts. The layout was large and did not necessarily have the warmth of a smaller space, the voice however was good and the body language effective.

Time sequence of the scenes

Empathy signs

Body language

Voice Tone

0.07 House enters the room

Strong glare

Attentive and curious

The Chinese American teenager speaks in slow voice

0.56 House explains the scenario

Empathetic look of Mr. House to the girl

House is sitting in conversation with the girl focuses on the girl only

The voice tone is medium

1.10 House provides the prescription to the girl

The girl has a mildly shy look

Girl is staring down and House shows body language that is  considerate about the matter

House speaks in a medium voice

2.12 The girl comes with her mother again and informs House about her issues

The girl and her mother are concerned. House shows disappointment

Girl has a shy body language House gives

House speaks in a higher tone than before

The scene is divided into two parts. The first part is the longer part and shows the Chinese American teenager come to the hospital and demand the services of Dr. House. Doctor house enters the room and figures out very sharply that the girl is taking advantage of her mother’s inability to understand English to get birth control pills for her. In the scene the girl is bilingual and acts as the bridge between her mother and Doctor House (Singer, 2004, Nov 30). It can be seen that she is not much culturally ethical as she takes advantage of her mother’s language problem to get her own needs met. However, the space remains unsafe for her mother as she for the larger part remains ignorant of the conversation her daughter is having with Dr. House. Cultural intelligence seems to be very good in Dr. House as he is very easily able to understand the real issue with the health of the mother.

Cultural intelligence refers to a person’s ability to understand the cultural aspects of a completely different culture. Moreover, it implies adjusting ones one communication and interactive aspects to match that of the other person. Here, Dr. House shows high cultural intelligence where he understand the actual health issues of the mother despite her not uttering a single word in English and her daughters sly intentions (Brislin, Worthley & Macnab, 2006). Dr. House is easily able to understand the significant issues that affect the scenario. The Chinese girl is culturally not intelligent enough and undermines the ability of Dr. House. The mother also has low cultural capabilities as she completely relies on her daughter to communicate with the doctor. The ability to adjust to a completely different culture requires a certain level of acceptance of different cultures. In order to freely interact beyond cultural barriers one needs to develop better knowledge of various cultures. In Dr. House this is prominent and it is also later revealed that he can speak Chinese. Cultural capabilities are much required for essential cultural interactions and better cultural understanding (Quappe & Cantatore, 2005).

Factors connected with the creation of safe spaces

There is a significant lack of safe space that can be seen in the video. Safe place implies an area where people from diverse cultures can freely interact (Holley & Steiner, 2005). In this case the Chinese woman is completely unaware of what actually transpires in the hospital. Her daughter used her inability to speak or understand English to get birth control pills for herself. Dr. House also keeps her in the dark about the conversation between him and her daughter. This creates a state of confusion that is not in accordance with the requirements of a safe space. It can be said that the space is not safe as an effective conversation does not take place. However, at the end better cultural capabilities have been used by Dr. House to make her aware to a certain extent about her daughter’s intentions. The cross cultural interactions in this case only affects the daughter and Dr. House. However, the girl fails to make good use of it and later the entire issue is revealed. The environment and the non-transparency made the setting much unsafe (Spencer-Oatey & Franklin, 2012).

It is recommended that the characters remained more transparent in their conversation. The daughter should have essentially considered her mother’s actual health issues while communicating the same with the doctor. For the mother it was much required that she took the help of hand gestures and other non-verbal modes of communication to let the doctor know about her actual health issues. Her reliance on her daughter acting as the translator was the reason the conversation did not go well and the safe space was not created. It was also not a good on the part of Dr. House to keep the mother unaware of the issues that were discussed between him and her daughter. Moreover in the end it was seen that House does reveal the issues to the mother and leaves the room. The scenario could have had a better conclusion if the participants enhanced their cultural communication.


The video pointed out that bilingualism can help to create safe spaces as well as contribute to further confusion if it is not used properly. The scenario was not good in terms of safe spaces as ineffective cultural interactions took place in the video clip. The participants should have worked in better ways towards understanding their significant needs. The girl needs to open up to her mother about her intentions. It is important for the creation of safe spaces that all the participants engage in interactions on equal terms.


Alon, I., Boulanger, M., Meyers, J., & Taras, V. (2016). The development and validation of the business cultural intelligence quotient. Cross Cultural & Strategic Management, 23(1), 78-100.

Ang, S., Rockstuhl, T., & Tan, M. L. (2015). Cultural intelligence and competencies. International encyclopedia of social and behavioral sciences, 2, 433-439.

Brislin, R., Worthley, R., & Macnab, B. (2006). Cultural intelligence: Understanding behaviors that serve people’s goals. Group & Organization Management, 31(1), 40-55.

Groves, K. S., Feyerherm, A., & Gu, M. (2015). Examining cultural intelligence and cross-cultural negotiation effectiveness. Journal of Management Education, 39(2), 209-243.

Holley, L. C., & Steiner, S. (2005). Safe space: Student perspectives on classroom environment. Journal of Social Work Education, 41(1), 49-64.

Livermore, D., & Soon, A. N. G. (2015). Leading with cultural intelligence: The real secret to success. Amacom.

Ott, D. L., & Michailova, S. (2018). Cultural intelligence: A review and new research avenues. International Journal of Management Reviews, 20(1), 99-119.

Quappe, S., & Cantatore, G. (2005). What is Cultural Awareness, anyway? How do I build it. Retrieved July, 17, 2008.

Singer, B (2004, Nov 30). House MD, Season 2 Episode 18, Bilingual Backfire (Fox Studios). Retrieved from

Spencer-Oatey, H., & Franklin, P. (2012). What is culture. A compilation of quotations. GlobalPAD Core Concepts, 1-22.

Thomas, D. C., Liao, Y., Aycan, Z., Cerdin, J. L., Pekerti, A. A., Ravlin, E. C., ... & Moeller, M. (2015). Cultural intelligence: A theory-based, short form measure. Journal of International Business Studies, 46(9), 1099-1118.

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