List Yourself

An Autoethnography of Intercultural Identity

in Intercultural Mirrors


This chapter presents a “messy” text (Ronai, 1995) – a layered account of intercultural experience that reflects both the content and process of the narrative construction of identity. Layering story with rumination and reflection, the purpose of this work is to further explore, through the autoethnographic form, how intercultural interaction shapes the ‘self.’ Drawing heavily on the work of constructivist psychologists, such as Neimeyer (2004), who conceptualise identity as a “narrative achievement,” suggesting “our sense of self is established through the stories we tell about ourselves, the stories that relevant others tell about us, and the stories we enact in their presence (p. 54), this chapter assumes a view of human beings as “Homo Narrans,” people “driven by the very roots of our co-being in telling our stories” (Poulos, 2008, p. 64). From this perspective, the link between intercultural experience and identity can perhaps be understood as grounded in stories of self and other, consistent with the idea that we story and re-story sense into our lives as a means of co-constructed meaning-making.