Word Count 1099
Discuss the similarities and differences between any TWO societies. In your answer, make reference to the role of cultures, norms, values and inequality in social organization.
There are many similarities and differences between the cultures of Japan and Britain, this essay will look at some of these including religion, education, norms, values and inequalities in their social organizations. According to Google’s public data there are 127, 817, 277 people living in Japan compared to 62, 641, 000 living in Britain. (Google, 2011) There are two main religions in Japan, Shinto and Buddhism. These religions do not play a big part in everyday life, although the Japanese do follow religious rituals at ceremonies like birth, weddings and funerals. England’s main religion is Christianity, where people go to church to worship God. One of the major ceremonies that take place in Japan is New Year, where it is celebrated it over 3 days, from 1st January – 3rd January. At this time the Japanese visit their late relatives’ graves and their first visit is also believed to secure luck for the year ahead.
Throughout Britain, New Year celebrations begin on New Year’s Eve, 31st December, where parties are normally held between family and friends. On the stroke of midnight, there are lots of cheering and drinking of toasts. Tradition known as the ‘first footing’ usually happens at midnight too, where it is believed the first person over the threshold will bring luck for the coming year.
O-Bon in Japan is another celebrated event which takes place around 16th August, where it is believed the spirits of their ancestors come to earth to visit the living. Unlike Halloween which is celebrated in Britain, these spooky spirits are welcomed and this is another time where the Japanese visit their families’ graves. (Inside Japan Tours Ltd) Certain cultural norms are expected in Japan as with any other culture. An example of when food and drink is consumed...
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