The CPD Blog is intended to stimulate dialog among scholars and practitioners from around the world in the public diplomacy sphere. The opinions represented here are the authors' own and do not necessarily reflect CPD's views. For blogger guidelines, click here.

August 8, 2012
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Min hem ya neem,” bellowed the baritone Kurdish Hamlet. To be or not to be—always a good question to be asked of any public diplomacy venture.

The American Music Abroad program is designed to communicate America’s rich contributions to the global music scene as it fosters cross-cultural communication and people-to-people connections to global audiences. Today, American Voices is proud to administer the American Music Abroad program on behalf of the U.S.

“If you are going to tell people the truth, you better make them laugh; otherwise, they’ll kill you.”
-George Bernard Shaw

I used to think that humor was one thing that didn’t translate in cross-cultural communication. In my travels, I had watched numerous attempts at jokes fail miserably as they got lost in translation or cultural nuances. Things often ended awkwardly amid the seemingly untranslatable nature of humor.

For a field that is predicated on communication, we public diplomats don’t always do as good a job as we could in communicating what is public diplomacy to the public that we serve.  As such, it remains an ongoing challenge for the field to create awareness of what public diplomacy is and what it entails.

How country music shapes America's brand status. 

“Five million Kurds in Iraqi Kurdistan have become a beacon of light for the 35 million Kurds who live in Turkey, Syria, and Iran. That beacon of light is keeping us awake at night and is filling our hearts with hope.”
-Kani Xulam, Director of the American-Kurdish Information Network

In the subcontinent, there is really only one religion that unites India, Pakistan and Bangladesh: cricket.

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