Cultural Background - Essay Example

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By definition I can be considered a culturally diverse entity mainly because my parents and I are natives of Puerto Rico and immigrants to the united States. Aside form the obvious birth in a different country, the contributions to my cultural identity are my parents who reinforce traditions of a culture that is not always familiar in my mind through introductions to people from the same culture, reinforcing the flavors, sounds, and vales that should be instilled in my mind…
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By definition I can be considered a culturally diverse entity mainly because my parents and I are natives of Puerto Rico and immigrants to the unitedStates. Aside form the obvious birth in a different country, the contributions to my cultural identity are my parents who reinforce traditions of a culture that is not always familiar in my mind through introductions to people from the same culture, reinforcing the flavors, sounds, and vales that should be instilled in my mind. Perhaps the strongest indication of my culture is my fluent use of Spanish in the home, work, and in social situations. However because of the availability of bilingual instruction in elementary, middle, and high schools, I also am able to read, write, and speak English fluently. Furthermore the maintenance of a staple food, rice and beans with pork, reminds me of the local flavors and aromas native to my country. Btu I think what contributes the most to maintaining a connection to our cultural background seems to have already been established by previous generations of Puerto Ricans. Since Puerto Ricans have been arriving to this country since the 1800s, there has already been collective social action in advocating political and social rights and preserving the heritage. There are more stateside Puerto Ricans in the states; about four million since the beginning of the twenty-first century then there are in Puerto Rico since 2003. There are contributions in all fronts from the entertainment industry, the labor market, the political aspect, and integrating celebration of Puerto Rican culture whenever possible. Currently there are at least fifty Puerto Rican parades that can be participated in across the nation and the majority of Puerto Ricans live together in small communities, the largest in New York City, keeping ties to the culture tight. There have contributions to the educational system including the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund and the National Conference of Puerto Rican Women among others that help contribute to expanding the voice of the people and what has made it possible to break down barriers between immigrant families such as my own and American families. Furthermore there is no one specific concentration of Puerto Ricans in the united States, so the influence is felt in most places. Currently there are prominent government officials representing the community through the House of Representatives and on local governmental positions. In the entertainment industry actors and singers such as Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony have a large following but never have made it a point to stray away from their heritage. It seems that instead of Puerto Ricans assimilating to American culture, Americans, its society has assimilated to Puerto Rican culture. For example it is refreshing to know that in high schools and then future jobs it is a requirement for an individual to learn Spanish, learn the culture and be able to communicate with diverse individuals instead of immigrants and children of immigrants having to ignore their language and traditions and only follow what is set before them as American standard. It is encouraging to know that since the nineteenth century individuals from Puerto Rico have been striving for perfection in their fields but have not forgotten their roots. Their success is achieved without compromising their identity and that makes it hopeful for others that they can achieve without denying their vales and traditions. Instead of a melting pot of cultures in the u.s., it is a salad bowl, which means that speaking a different language, eating a different type of food, listening to a different type of music, or even living a different life style is accepted instead of rejected.
Through this exploration of my own culture and the impact is has on the rest of the nation it is important for me to realize that culture identity is not necessarily established just because someone is born in their country of origin or if their parents are born there. The need to accept that origin and be comfortable enough to identify with other people must be reinforced in a sociological sense. It is easier to identify as being a proud Puerto Rican because I know that there is support system behind me. Read More
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