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Topics in cultural studies - Essay Example

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Cultural Challenges Faced by Non- Western Cultures Abstract Cultural Challenges Faced by Non- Western Cultures Non- Western cultures (mainly Africa and Asia) are being influenced by the Western cultures (mainly America); however, quick on a superficial level…
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Download file to see previous pages The statement, “Worldwide, non-Western cultures faced fundamental challenges to their cultural identities—not so much a re-centering of culture but a de-centering of culture.” (Sayre, 2010, p.419), apparently holds true when we look at the present scenario of non-Western countries on a superficial level. For example, McDonalds which is an American company is also situated in many non-Western countries such as India, Egypt and others. The high percentage of popularity of McDonalds in these countries shows that it has had great influence on the non-Western cultures in the terms of food. But didn’t Indian Food Restaurants, open up in different parts of America in order to cater the Indians living on American ground? Americans would have tried the food also. Hence, we can say that apparently there is de-centering of culture mostly on the part of non-western people but looking at it the depths of the cultural values and beliefs gives a completely different scenario. Understanding the Aspects of Culture A culture defines the identity of a group of people living in a particular region or country. Culture covers the following aspects: dress, greetings, food, values: moral and religious, traditional events and the like. Among these: dress, greetings and food are superficial aspects which can change quickly but change at deeper levels is much slower. (Majid Tehranian, B. Jeannie Lum, Toda, 2006, p. 12). Understanding the Influence of Western Cultures Western cultural imperialism creating a unified globalised culture may be occurring on a superficial level. However, at deeper levels, cultural changes are slow and invisible. This suggests that though there is a global culture being formed where non – western cultures are being influenced by the western cultures, on deeper levels, though; the people continue to value their own diverse cultural aspects in their everyday lives. As moving to the future, people may move quickly as well as they may return back to their roots as they realize the importance of their cultures as their unique identities which should not be lost. People will, thus, stay connected in both ways: to their past and also look forward to the future. (Tehranian, Lum, 2006, p. 13). Taking example of the Indian Culture, there are a lot of cultural values and beliefs in this region. In this modern era, Indian culture has been influenced by the western cultures in terms of dressing, greetings, food and traditional events. Though, they have not forgotten their values but they have added on the western cultural values as a part of their existing culture. If we consider the dress aspect of the Indian culture, their traditional dress is the “saree”; currently, worn by the old Indian generation. One can also see many teenage youths wearing short skirts, pants and the like. The traditional greeting of Indians is the saying of the term “Namaste”, “Salaam” and others. However, one may hear people their say: “Hello”, “Hi”, and “Good Morning” which are greetings that belong to the western culture. The people of the West celebrate Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day and more. The Indians along with the celebration of Diwali also celebrate the days celebrated by the West. (Venkateswara, 2010). If we look at the Indian culture before the European expansion and compare it with today’ ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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