Cultural Diversity

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Cultural Diversity
Throughout our world there is a wide variety of different cultures. Each and every culture has their own spin on how certain situations are handled, for example; Greeting one another, eye contact, openness to outsiders, etc. In a country such as the United States, we live in such a culturally diverse country, but yet, many of us no very little or nothing about cultures other than our own. Often times we know nothing about our own culture because culture isn’t really thought about by most of us.

My family is a mixture of Italian, Polish, and German, though we do not really identify with any of those culturally, to be the least bit generous we have a little spin off of Italian culturally but not very much. Culturally I would have to say that my family and I are very much Americanized. Now what does it mean to be Americanized? Americans have their own special set of rules upon strangers. We are not always the most friendly to outsiders but all greetings should involve introducing yourself and usually involves a handshake, to show respect. American cultures usually do not always get to eat dinners as a family together, with the busy lifestyles that everyone has these days, meals together are often few and far between, but in most occasions they usually take place on the weekend or at a special even such as a party. The little spin off of Italian in our culture is we often enjoy eating Italian and we often like to go out with our relatives and have a big old family meeting over a good meal. Special occasions we celebrate are the usual Holidays; Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, then we also celebrate others birthdays, graduations from High School and College to show appreciation for the work they have done or just surviving another year. Our culture is the culture of many. Many celebrate the same, simple things that my family does.

The Americanized culture is a pretty simplistic one with not much too special about it, maybe because we are just so accustom to it. But it’s when you go and enter other cultures boundaries that you feel different. With having a half Latino cousin, I have often been around the Puerto Rican culture for most of my life. Recently I took a look at another Latino culture, the Mexican culture. My friends and I went to a friend’s sibling’s birthday party. Upon entry since we are already known by the main family (my friends family) we were welcomed, we were slightly introduced to some immediate family, eye contact is made during the introduction and usually a handshake is involved. I noticed when family members greet each other a hug or sometimes a kiss on the cheek is used as a hello then small talk is often followed. In comparison I feel the American culture dresses up a little more casually for party situations than the Latino culture, but where they lack dressing up, they make up with having a little more fun. Where my family at a party most of the time we sit around the table and talk and eat, they eat, everyone helps pitch in on the cooking, and they like to play games and drink (they also tend to be more lenient on the drinking age). Their parties tend to be a bit larger though I have tended to notice that Latinos often times have larger families than any other culture I have experienced. I will be able to use this information in the future to know how to greet others of the same culture whether it be a stranger or it be someone of higher power, say at a job interview, I now know how to introduce myself, that they are big on family, and that they like to eat and drink. This information can be used to surprise them and make them think well of me if in an interview.

To conclude, all cultures are different, each has their own specific likes and dislikes about each and every situation, no culture is the same, some are alike but never identical. Being able to look into a different culture is always a nice learning experience because it teaches you how to act around different...
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