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Article-1 1.What is symbolic ethnicity? How do Irish-Americans display their symbolic ethnicity on St. Patrick’s Day? People who emigrate from one country to another feel a little ‘uprooted’ from their own culture and ‘home’. To feel attached to their homeland and to feel being a part of their own culture, they celebrate certain festivals or customs which symbolize their cultural roots and traditions…
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Download file to see previous pages The intention behind these festivals is to celebrate their own cultural values without disturbing their daily routine or without making those values a serious part of their lives. Hence, the mild and fun way to celebrate the ethnic festivals and cultural customs by immigrants, to symbolize their cultural and ethnic values, is known as symbolic ethnicity. St. Patrick’s Day is a religious holiday celebrated in Ireland to pay homage to St. Patrick who died on March 17, 460 AD, and who is known to have introduced Christianity to Ireland. Hence, St. Patrick’s Day is considered as a part of their religious values and is practiced by Irish people by going to Church and paying respect to St. Patrick. However, Irish people who have immigrated to America celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in a different way and without giving it a serious touch of religiousness. In the US, St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated by Irish-Americans in celebratory form by holding a parade consisting of banners, colorful costumes, bands and celebrations. New York hosts the largest St. Patrick’s Day parade with more than 150,000 Irish soldiers and 3 million spectators participating in it. For Irish-Americans, there are no obligations to attend the church or to follow any serious religious rituals on this day. This celebratory method of St. Patrick’s Day has become so famous that St. Patrick’s Day parades are celebrated in different cities throughout the world now. Irish-Americans practice St. Patrick’s Day to symbolize their ethnic roots and feeling of belonging to their homeland. Hence, Irish-Americans celebrate the St. Patrick’s Day lightly as a symbolic ethnicity and not as a religiously important day. 2.According to the article, why is symbolic ethnicity appealing to white ethnics? In today’s fast paced world, time and speed has become an important aspect of life. People’s choice depends on speed and time. Preference for fast things has also affected the religious aspects of people’s lives. According to the article, White etnics have adopted those practices which allow them choice and freedom to celebrate the religious aspects in their lives. Symbolic ethnicity does not demand much of their time and energy. It is a fun method of celebrating important religious festivals. Moreover, symbolic ethnicity is free from any restrictions, strict behavior codes, obligations or rituals. Hence, it makes people feel that they are free to practice festivals in their own way without any pressure from ‘religious authority’. Symbolic ethnicity offers choice and freedom to people and they feel that they can express their feelings for religious festivals in individual way. Moreover, White ethnics not only enjoy their individuality but also the feeling of belongingness to their community by practicing ethnic practices in symbolic way. Symbolic ethnicity does not affect their daily lives in any way but in fact, gives them a fun break and relaxation from their work. They achieve both, the personal and social identity, by practicing symbolic ethnicity. Hence, symbolic ethnicity has become appealing to White ethnics in America. 3.Why do you think so many people with no Irish heritage celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? ‘Old’ traditional and religious customs were difficult to follow as they needed a person to know the religious asp ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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