December 14th, 2012
Throughout my weeks of researching Ethnic Cultural Diversity, i’ve found that trying to define the words ethnicity and culture aren’t in any way easy, but are significantly easier that trying to define the word diversity. When I began this project, in my CLS 100 class a few weeks prior to now, I hadn’t really gone into depth on the topic of diversity in any way, shape, or form. When I say “...in any way, shape, or form”, I don’t mean for that statement to be taken lightly. Basically, any thought that I had had on the topic of diversity had not ever gone beneath the surface of the word. Think of it as a glacier. From an average perspective, one will see what they know to be a glacier. In reality, usually 90% of a glacier is concealed beneath the water. What a person is seeing when they look at a glacier is merely the 10% (or so) that is actually above the water. Seeing the word diversity and thinking only of something as insufficient as a difference in skin color, for example, is just like seeing a glacier and believing you are surveying the whole. On occasion, the beauty of something can only be found if you look beneath the surface.
At the beginning of this “Diversity Project” we were given a group, consisting of two or three other classmates, and were told to pick one of the ample topics within the category of Diversity. I was picked to be part of a group with two of my fellow classmates Eli Ledy and Lordia Dipiazza. We chose to focus our search on the diversity between the thousands of different ethnicities and cultures found throughout the world. We took into consideration the abundance of cultures found within the U.S. itself, which gives America the nickname of being a “Melting Pot” of ethnicities. The downside to this idea, is the entire concept of the melting pot. When you “melt” together all of the different ethnicities, cultures, and traditions that they may have presently had, you end up with resemblance between all of the different cultures, and less of the characteristics that should, and used to, define specific cultures from one another. This ended up being the deciding point for our choice of Ethnic Cultures Throughout the World over Ethnic Cultures in the U.S. While the different cultures in the U.S are becoming more and more related to each other, the cultures that are located right in the root of where they began stay as pure, unique, and distinct as they were hundreds of years ago. Throughout the continents of Asia, Africa, and Europe, there are multiple cultures and traditions with special characteristics that are rich in specificity. Cultural practices include multiple different characteristics including religion, language, art/music, customs/traditions, celebrations, eating, clothing, and other aspects of normal, daily life. Some cultures are roughly known in general by the rest of the population, but have lavishly interesting qualities that are virtually unheard-of.
As the most populous in the world, the continent of Asia has more than 4 billion people, making up around 60% of the population of the world. Central Asia, Southern Asia, Western Asia, and Eastern Asia are each subregions of this large continent. Central Asia is made up of five former Soviet Socialist Republics including Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan. In Central Asia, the most prominent religion is Islam. Influences on the culture are most likely an effect from land conquerors, such as the Mongols, Persians, and Russians and also Indian, Chinese, and Arabian cultures. In Central Asia, no part of an animal is ever wasted. The fat, liver, lungs, intestines, head, tail, you name it. Whether the parts are for something edible or something wearable, it’s all used. By refining the search of traditions within cultures, we can elaborate on a specific country. For example, in Kyrgyzstan, there is...