Family and Cultural Identity

Topics: Family, Culture, Grandparent Pages: 3 (990 words) Published: November 18, 2010
Ever since I was a little boy my parents have told me stories about my grandparents. All throughout my house you can find items that used to belong to my grandparents. My mother and father made a point of decorating our house with items that had a sentimental value to my grandparents. This is because the majority of my parent’s cultural values were shaped by their elders and they thought it was important to pass these cultural values down to my sister and I. They did this by filling the house with objects that had significance to my grandparents. Despite being deceased my grandparents still had a presence in my day to day life growing up because of these items. For example, my grandfather’s combat boots that he wore during the Korean War were always on display next to the fireplace in the living room. In the kitchen my grandma’s antique Rosary could always be found hanging on the wall next to the sink. These two symbolic items told the story of my grandparents and therefore played a significant role in shaping the cultural identity I have to this day.

The two main concepts my parents wanted me to take away from my grandparents was love of country and love of God. These two cultural themes combine together to form my family’s master narrative. This master narrative is best described as traditional family values. The cultural identity I have today is a direct result of the stories my parents told me about my grandparent’s conservative traditional values. My grandfather was a veteran of the Korean War and his military boots represented his patriotism, sacrifice, and love of America. My parents used his military service as a way of communicating to me their concept of America. They taught me that America is a noble country and a special place to live. They wanted me to know America is full of opportunities and that hard work is the key to success. Another cultural theme my parents communicated to me was the importance of God and religion. My...
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