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Shared Cultural Experiencres Shape our Identity - Essay Example

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Shared cultural experiences shape our identity Customer’s Name Customer’s Grade Course 18th October 2011 Cultural experiences are the things that we do as a result of being born into a society where people were doing the same thing. They are the things that we learn without being taught but from observing the things that surround us…
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Shared Cultural Experiencres Shape our Identity
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Shared Cultural Experiencres Shape our Identity

Download file to see previous pages... For that to happen, a general view has to be created in the mind of a person. Since every person is an individual, these views are not exactly true and thus they are stereotypes. The image created in ones mind about some other people is what that person will hold true until he/she learns otherwise. Shared cultural experiences go a long way in trying to demystify stereotypes. They provide further information in a more accurate manner than the stereotypes which are mostly assumptions. Television, for example, gives people a lot of information concerning other cultures and helps a great deal in shaping ones individual identity. It is therefore not wrong when we say that it affects the construction of individual identity. As the adage goes, “no man is an island”. This means those human beings are social in nature and live in groups. The group that one identifies with can be said to be his/her culture. It is therefore likely for that individual to possess characteristics which are particular to that group. Every human being possesses certain characteristics unique to them only. Through interaction people are able to learn about others and thus end the stereotypes which they hold against the others. In today’s world, this happens through the media very much. There are common beliefs in the west that in Africa, there is no civilization and people live in caves and other such places. When an individual who holds such a believe watches television and sees cities that are in Africa which are just like the ones found in the west, this person’s believe changes out of learning this new bit of information. This change is as a result of the individual having true information as stereotypes are based majorly on assumptions which are rarely true. Shared cultural experiences are those things that are used across cultures and they are not associated with any one culture. These are things like music, movies and many others. A Stereotype is accepted to be true due to lack of information concerning the certain thing to which the prejudice is directed towards (Nelson, 2009). Through shared experiences, one can understand other people from an individual level and thus eliminate any existing thoughts about the person. In a class, for example, there might exist a prejudice that a certain group of individuals is expedient in a certain field of study. With such premeditated thoughts if one is not from that particular group, he/she may always believe that he can not perform better than those individuals. Through interaction with those other people who are believed to be better, one may get the confidence and thus desire to perform equally well. If this person emerges top, of the class the stereotype will have been broken. If this happens, it will have been instigated by the sharing of a cultural experience between individuals of different cultures. When studying human behavior, it is believed that it is shaped by what one believes thus people will behave differently when in the company of certain individuals. If what makes this person behave in a certain manner is not true, then this person shall be understood wrongly. Some stereotypes can make people, from say a minority group; think that they are inferior to others. When cultural experiences are shared between individuals from the superior and inferior cultures, this stereotype can be mystified. By doing ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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