What is culture
Throughout the world there are absolutely different people, who enjoy living their lives in different ways, who have thousands of various fascinating customs and traditions. Sometimes for an American citizen it may be hard to understand the style of clothing and behaving in the Middle East, for instance, while a woman from the Middle East find it inappropriate to wear clothes in accordance with today’s fashion on the street. People all over the world have views that are often quite the opposite to each other and that is what makes the Earth such an interesting place to live. Getting familiar with people’s attitudes, beliefs and languages around the globe can teach us a lot, it can give the understanding of a number of issues, as long as exploring the world cultures allows to explore ourselves. In this article, you will find some interesting information about the definition of culture as a term, curious facts about different world cultures and guidelines how to deal with writing a paper on what is culture for your studies.
Culture is a specific term that is used to characterize different particular groups of people, each of which has its unique features. By these features, we mean anything that makes the variety of social groups in the world. For example, language, national cuisine, traditions, habits, religion, arts, music and so on. Apart from it, culture is sometimes defined as a number of behavioral specificities, interactions, the ways of communication between people within that or another social group, etc. in other words, culture serves to create the identity of a group of people so that every particular group could be unique and serve to complete the overall pattern of the world community.
As for the historical background, the term «culture» was originated in France and, eventually, was originally a French term but derived from the old Latin language, which gave birth to most of the terms that are used nowadays. In the very beginning, this term was used to explain the cultivation, the growth and nurturing. However, at the same time, the opinions of scientists in regard to this question differ one from another, since they all suggest their own research concerning the appearance of the word «culture», as well as to the original meaning of what is culture.
Today the number of cultures is permanently increasing, because people have enough of freedom to create new cultures that would represent their views, beliefs, values, etc. In accordance with one of the possible definitions of what is culture, this term refers to the way of life of a defined group of people or of a defined period of time. The way of life is something that includes all kinds of activities that people do in their everyday life and that serves as a basis to their behavioral specificities. As long as we all see how the number of ways of life is increasing every day and how everything is constantly changing, it may be even hard to list all the cultures existing in the world today. At the same time, it is important to admit, that there are also such cultures that create the basis for any other potential cultures that are appearing right now or may appear in the future. Here, we are talking of the cultures of different parts of the world in a global context. Below, we provided the list of the major world cultures that everybody should be aware of.
The major cultures of the world
- The Western culture. When it comes to this term, we mean the culture of all the countries in the Europe, as well as of those countries that European immigrants have impact on, such as Canada, The United States of America and so on. This kind of culture tends to expand very fast and includes a wide range of ethnic and social groups, the influence of which can be observed almost in every part of the world.
- The Eastern culture. When talking of this kind of culture, we refer to the social and ethical norms and beliefs of the countries located in the East part of Asia. Although this culture is absolutely different from the Western, it also tends to influence other groups of people. While the Western culture was formed under the influence of christianity, the Eastern culture was also formed under the influence of religion factor.
- The Latin culture. This culture includes a great number of countries, where people mostly speak Spanish language, although the territory and geography of predomination of this culture is much more bigger. It includes the countries of Latin America, first of all, but at the same time, Spain and Portugal, which are located in Europe, appeared to be the key factor of Latin culture origins. It has to be admitted, though, that this culture is not spreading throughout the world as the previous two.
- The Middle Eastern culture. Here, it is important to admit that although this culture connects all the countries of the Middle East, they still have many different features and specificities. The major thing that is common for all the countries of the Middle East is the knowledge and usage of Arabic language. As it is widely known, the part of the world where the Middle Eastern culture predominates, is the birthplace of the major monotheistic religions of the world, such as Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
- The African culture. As a matter of fact, the life of all humans originated on this part of the world and for this reason, the African culture, or at least its elements, are essential to the majority of all cultures existing nowadays. Apart from it, Africa is a place of birth to a great number of unique social and ethnic groups, each of which distinguishes due to the language, traditions and customs.
What is culture in terms of globalization
The world we live in tends to change and develop every moment. New technologies, conveniences, innovations, discoveries are taking place everywhere and there is no remedy to stop this constant process. All this led humanity to a situation, where we face the phenomenon of globalization. This term explains a wide range of issues concerning the specificities of contemporary life of human society. Generally speaking, it refers to the issue of interconnectedness of everything in the world. The interconnectedness of people, of economies, of scientific achievements, and, of course, the interconnectedness of cultures. Representatives of different cultures extend their ways of life (which includes everything above-stated) and by means of this, cultures of different social and ethnic groups mix up and influence each other. Apart from all, such situation often leads to various conflicts on the ground of incompatibility of different cultures and to non-acceptance of what is strange or new by the culture groups or separate representatives. In order to be able to understand each other, to understand what is culture and how to celebrate and admire the differences between different cultures, people all over the world need to make significant efforts and work upon this issue, because this is a matter of peace on the Earth. If people were able to respect, understand and accept their differences, there would be no wars throughout the history of humanity. Below in the article, you will find tips that will be helpful for you and everyone who wants to earn to admire and celebrate cultural differences.
The celebration of cultural differences as the main condition of peace on the Earth
While many people often wonder why do wars and other conflicts start, there is a universal answer to this kind of questions. The main reason for occurrences of violence is the disability to understand, accept, enjoy and celebrate cultural differences. People just don’t want to realize that the beauty of the world is in the variety of everything. They reject those who look and think differently without even trying to open their mind for something new. Therefore, in order to make the Earth a better place to live, it is important to undertake the following steps:
- Make an effort to understand what is culture. It is essential that people realize that they are different. Some of them are blond, brunet, some are taller, others are shorter, some are wiser, nicer, some are black, while others are white and so on. However, no matter how people look, it doesn’t have to be the factor of treatment in regard to them.
- Observing is the second essential step. By observing, we mean communicating with representatives of other cultures and countries of the world, find out interesting facts about them, discover new ways of life, etc. Thus, you will learn the meaning of culture for other people and find out that being different doesn’t mean to be worse. In fact, you may really become interested in something that you rejected lately.
- Exploring new places. This is an important step in expanding your horizons, liberalize your views and make your mind open to new fascinating things. By exploring new places, you will learn how other people live and what forms the definition of what is culture for them.
- Try to learn the culture in other country and involve yourself in it for a couple of days. At first sight, it may seem quite strange and difficult, but in fact, there is nothing bad about it at all! You may wear special clothing of a particular culture, eat their food (consider cooking on your own), learn a few new words and you may even find it to be fun and a great way to entertain yourself while learning something new.
- Get new knowledge and learn something new every day. For example, you may study some history, customs or traditions about a particular culture or even your own country. If you know enough about what is culture in your own birthplace, it will be easier for you to understand the history of others. If you are proud of your own traditions, you will understand why people living in other countries are proud of the traditions of their own.
- Accept the cultural differences. Here, it is the matter of realizing of what is culture, understanding that there are not two equal personalities in the world, as well as there are no two equal cultures. If you undertake all the above-mention steps, this acceptance will be a logical finish, together with the ability to enjoy and celebrate the variety of cultures.
Having said that, it is important that while learning and discovering the variety of cultures in the world, you avoid judging and being unreasonably antagonistic with facts and knowledge that you get. Quite the opposite, you need to be as tolerant as you can and set your curiosity free in order to learn as much as possible. Be open-minded and free from prejudices, be eager to get new knowledge and there is a great chance that you will find it funny and that you will even enjoy the process.
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