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  1. Background

Cultural intelligence, cultural awareness, and cultural capability are basic requirements in the creation of safe spaces. The safe space is constructed when every individual in that specific setting participates in the activities positively. In relation to societal setup, safe space encourages equality and togetherness “…My mom and all the women and girls in my family were forced to marry young so that their fathers can get money. I seriously think that if they were educated and knew that girls can also go to school and make a living the women in my family wouldn’t be so dependent on their husbands (Roux, 2012). Giving equal opportunities to everyone in the community or family setting makes them better regardless of their sex status and social prejudices like oppression, diversity, and cultural proficiency.

  1. Scope

The report centers on safe spaces associated with the place of work setting. The movie that has been picked is the One Where Rachel Smokes as an indication where Racheltakes upsmoking to feel more included at work. This movie highlights the topic for analysis to help in connecting the aspect of safe place. The movie displays particular scenes that make it ideal for the primary discussion in the entirety of this report.

  1. Aim

This report is going to offer a detailed summary, analysis and an account about the movie the One Where Rachel Smokes, and describes safe spaces concept. The film will also give recommendations on the best way to enhance safety standards in academic environments thus avoiding instances that lead to unsafe place.

  1. Video Excerpt

The One Where Rachel Smokes movie provides clear understanding of safe place where Joey is getting envious when Ross gets an audition for commercial add and knowing there is part of the father creates the need for safeness in operations. The point of concern comes with the introduction of Phoebe who throws an intimate dinner as birthday party for Rachel, which actually comes a month in advance. In the turn of events, Monica hurriedly takes over in different style. The needed to create the needed safety thus prompts the suggestion to have the smoking breaks in the balcony. This movie integrates characters that show safe conditions in two instances. First, there is collaboration of safe place of operation when Monica meets Rachel. Secondly, the safeness is seen when there is need to smoke in the balcony.

  1. Literature Summary

Safe spaces not only form fundamentals in an academic setting but also in the societal setup and workplaces. Nevertheless, for one to discern the meaning of safe spaces and how to build this environment there is a need for cultural intelligence, awareness, and capability, which form the basic insight to this conception.

    1. Cultural Self-awareness

The insight to the word “culture” offers the first impression in an identification of safe spaces. The understanding of culture is crucial in all areas of society-from the barriers of communication to how we perceive the social world. A culture forms three components; behavior, expertise, and the experiences. The three components are the fundamentals defined as cultural self-awareness. Cultural awareness involves “…the foundation of communication and highlights the ability to stand for ourselves and become aware of our cultural beliefs, perceptions, and values” (Cardwell and Flanagan, 2005).

    1. Cultural Intelligence

Cultural awareness enables us to understand the meaning of cultural intelligence. It is the capability of a person to effectively function in settings marred by cultural diversity (Holley and Steiner, 2005).

Cultural intelligence is always evident in apparent settings characterized by individuals being unfamiliar with their particular surroundings. This cause of culture shock happens when a person visits a foreign nation or when engaging with a group of persons who possess differences in their experience, knowledge and age. The failure in uncovering the distinct interpersonal skills like facial expressions, voice tone and body language can make one feel misplaced and manifest their culture shock later consequently and will experience the four stages of culture shock. The “Honeymoon, the crisis, the recovery and the “complete adjustment stages” (Bruhn, 2005).The figure below represents the four stages.

Report demonstrates a deep understanding of the concept of safe spaces and how this concept is demonstrated in the media clip. The discussion is very well supported by academic sources.It is crucial to understand communication among various cultures to ensure effective cultural intelligence. Nonetheless, there are hindrances that block effective communication when involved in an academic setting. The hindrances include; stereotypes, language, and behaviors (Bruhn, 2005).While these barriers hinder effective communication, comprehension of strategies to overcome these hindrances is vital .The key programs are listed below.

  • Clear and open questions

  • Active listening

  • Avoidance of stereotyping

  • Honest communication

Observations on Video four

Video Analysis 4

Sc Scene Time frame

Physical Factors

Communication Factors


Cultural Intelligence and Cultural Self-awareness

Ss Scene 9, Super-philosophy (4minutes,


— Portrays warm amber colors that show sense of humanity.

— Smoking in the balcony displays a sense of comfort that is associated with safe space.

— The close-ups and the camera shots display intimate atmosphere.

— The characters engage in eye contact.

— There is a welcoming gesture, laughter, smiling, and humor in most part of the scene sharing challenging issues and ideas.

— The voices of the characters represent calmness and softness.

— Their dialogue is open and honest.

— Highlights of inclusion are also displayed in the form of humor presented across the scene.

They apply this element to relate well with each other and become trustworthy. Ben, therefore, demonstrates cultural intelligence and cultural self-awareness

The film, The One Where Rachel Smokes highlights the idea of “safe spaces” through the encouragement of new concepts, creative thinking, and risk-taking attitude, this is manifested in its distinct communication and physical factors displayed across the movie scenes. The factors are precisely outlined in the figure below.

  1. Discussion

Scenes 2, 4 and 6-Joy forms bond with Ben

The scene highlights the union where Joey commences to discover himself. He begins to discover himself through the cultural intelligence and awareness of Ben. Rachel starts to feel safe, embraced in the presence of Ben, and hence reveals her feelings and challenges. The primary attachment that draws him to Rachel is that they both originate from one place, and share the same culture and upbringing and most critically, their experiences of child abuse. Ben, unlike other people, was able to understand Rachel in a way that no one had ever done to him. This motivated Ben to open up to him, gained his trust, and improved his self-esteem. The knowledge of one’s own culture that helped Ben copes with Rachel.

Scenes 3, 4 and 7-Joy and Rachel forms strong partnership

The initial meeting of the relationship between the two is marred by lies. However, these seem like coping mechanisms employed by Joy to safeguard a revelation of her life. Nonetheless, Rachel is able to uncover the weaknesses of Ben and starts to interrogate him about the life he lives. Eventually, Rachel gets irritated and feels that he would not be able to involve himself in a relationship. However, after a serious and honest discussion with Ben, Rachel receives support from her.

Such behaviours have been widely recognized in different researches including those which have attempted to find a link between movie episodes and instances of safe place within such movies. Furthermore, such studies have been focused on the social and academic environment as discussed by Taipale (2012) when he researched on mobility of cultures and knowledge management in contemporary Europe. The discussion provides an insightful review of how people adapt, perceive or react to the social world. It states people see, understand, and assess things differently. This is brought by distinct cultural traditions that people possess. For instance, the upbringing of Ben has shaped him to be a better person who is able to react and respond to people in relation to the social world. As much as the elements can be modified or changed in the scenario of Ben, his intellectual capability cannot be easily altered to perceptions of one’s experiences or values to ensure he suits in the cultural traditions.

  1. Recommendations

The video analysis in four displays it as a safe space, since it encourages creative, new ideas, welcoming of discussion and risk taking (Taipale, 2012).These safe components all guards Ben against emotional and psychological harm.

There are also some adjustments that can be made to curb the negative outcomes Ben experienced. This would enable him to be freer to reveal his feelings to Rachel without sheer of the doubt. For instance, in the beginning of “Super Philosophy” opening where Rachel is waiting upon Ben to start the first conversation.

The safe space occurrence that is displayed in the report analysis can also be adjusted to make the surrounding even much better and secure.

The physical behavior demonstrated by Ben at the opening of the session indicated that he did not show welcoming courtesy to Joey since he was whistling, looking around and felt sleepy. At that point, Ben should have demonstrated an inviting expression with eye contact to welcome Rachel into the room.

There was also need for Ben to encourage active participation of Rachel at the beginning to enable Rachel to feel more protected while giving his revelations.

  1. Conclusion

This report discussed safe spaces and attaining its sustainability in a culturally academic setting. The reported in relation to The One Where Rachel Smokes film highlighted the idea of safe spaces through analysis of various communication and physical factors. Whilst, the movie had initially displayed safe spaces, some few components required adjustments to modify and sustain the spaces to look safer. These include; calm smiles and inviting facial expressions, and essential eye contact. The report aided my ideologies through academic literature and effective and appropriate necessities that were applied in every section. Especially, in the summary of Literature where I offered a complete understanding review of the literature I have been learning about cultural intelligence, cultural awareness, and cultural capabilities. The camera, eye contact, space layout, settings, theme and sense of inclusive in the film entirety embraced the concept. Therefore, the report successfully reinforced the movie as a culturally “safe space”


Cardwell, M., & Flanagan, C. (2005). Psychology AS: The complete companion. Cheltenham: Nelson Thornes.

Roux, C. (2012). Safe Spaces: Human Rights Education in Diverse Contexts. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.

Holley.L.C.& Steiner.S. (2005) Safe space student perspectives on classroom environment. Journal of Social Social Work Education, 41(1),49-64.doi:10 5175/JSWE 2005.200300343

Bruhn.J.G.(2005) Culture -brain interactions physiological and behavioral Science,4040(4).243-254,doi:10.1007/BF02915216

Holland, T. (Director). (1999, April 8). The one where Rachel smokes (Television broadcast). Retrieved from

.Taipale (2012) Mobility of cultures and knowledge management in contemporary Europe, European Review, 20(2),173. doi:10.1017/S1062798711000445.