Welcome to Turning East

Taal Lake in Tagaytay

This website features recorded interviews which were edited to be read but also to retain the language of the individual storyteller, sometimes with a name change to protect privacy. The interviews begin in 1985 and continue into the present. Almost all are set in  China, Korea, Japan or the Philippines and center on personal, intercultural experience of life, work and travel. Occasionally I include a story of my own. I’ve now gone to posting once a month.

You can access posts by using the links on the right, listed under China, Japan, Korea, Philippines and Elsewhere. Or visit the index pages (links in upper right-hand corner of this green section) for more information. There’s a country index (link) and a subject index (link).

It is now possible to leave comments and read the comments of others by clicking the Facebook button to enter the site via Facebook. Please do.

Downloadable textbook–Bridges: Intercultural Conversation

Over ten of the years I was teaching at Dongguk University in Seoul, I wrote and used a two-semester textbook based on the Korea interviews in this site. (link) Each of the full-length chapters includes a reading selection on Korean and American interaction, exact definition of key terms, reading and discussion questions, listening tasks, grammar exercises/word study based on the reading selections and crossword puzzles using the vocabulary of the reading selections. Two additional chapters contain a reading selection for discussion or a writing assignment. PDF files of all eighteen chapters and a supplement are available on the textbook page so teachers can use them. Just don’t republish, please.

Carol Dussere

In 1984-86, I was a professor of English at Xiamen University, Fujian, China and a member of our tiny, close-knit expat community.  China was what we lived, breathed and discussed at great length. Stories about our experience flew around from one expat community to another like frisbees. I started collecting them in hope of writing a book. I returned to the University of Pittsburgh and eventually–after I moved to Seoul in 1988–finished up an MA in linguistics with TESOL certification. From 1989-2006, while teaching at Dongguk University in Seoul. I continued doing interviews and reshaped them into the cultural component of Bridges. In 2007, I moved to the Philippines. I’m now living in the beautiful town of Tagaytay, where I’m working on the submission package of a completed novel and writing a memoir. (“Dussere” rhymes with “blue hair,” which I don’t have yet.)

About the Author Carol

Carol Dussere was a professor of English from 1984-86 in Xiamen University, Fujian, China and from 1989-2006 at Dongguk University in Seoul. The interviews and photos on this page were collected as a result of her experience abroad. She currently lives in the beautiful town of Tagaytay, Philippines, where she is working on two book manuscripts. ("Dussere" rhymes with "blue hair," which she doesn't have yet.)

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5 comments
Syll says August 5, 2009

I love Carol’s smiling face.

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~ Sil in Corea says August 6, 2009

Isn’t it interesting how much alike people in small, farming villages are? I really enjoyed reading about Michelle’s experiences at the Chinese wedding. Some customs may seem different on the surface, but the reasons for them are as valid in any other village on the globe.

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Loretta Worters says August 12, 2009

This is FANTASTIC Carol! I love the picture at the top (where is it?) and your picture. Your friend did a wonderful job. Love the “feel” of the Website, the colors, everything is clean lines, etc., which is so important.

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Yourbethy says October 19, 2010

Carol – I love your latest about your first years in Korea and China. Very inspiring. Much love. Bethy

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Carol says September 14, 2017

Hi. Please leave comments,.

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