In sociology, Cultures can be described as the people's way of thinking, how they behave, and lastly the concrete objects that combine to give shape to the society's mode of living. Cultures are widely used to define the people of a particular group. It is possible because different cultures pertain their unique cultural components and social practices (Farrell, 2013). These social practices include; their religion, type of art, cooking and dishes, their mode of dressing and other additional factors. The social disciplines at some point are very bold to the extent of covering the material components of the people. For this paper, I will be comparing and contrasting two chosen cultures; and they are the Indian and the American cultures.
These two countries have diverse cultures; they have their differences and similarities too. In this paper, the analysis will expound on the two nations' cultures using the cultural components. The four cultural elements that I will use to explain the two are language, material objects, behaviors, and symbols.
The two counties both compare and contrast in matters language.
There are over 500 spoken languages in the United States, but the most spoken by the population is English. It is also the national language though not necessarily recorded by the constitution. Specifically, the American English is the language which has taken over the spoken art. Its usage is by more than eighty percent of the people living in the country. English has been the commonly used language in official matters; this is in the issues like the education system, government facilitation, court orders and other federal issues. Surprisingly, Spanish is the second most used language in the country, having accrued more than forty million speakers as per the census collection data. With that large population of Spanish in place, the government has given privileges to the Spanish speakers, such as during elections. They have allowed the printing of ballot boxes in Spanish in places like Puerto Rico, which is one of the most Spanish populated regions.
After Papua guinea, India has the second most number of spoken languages. The constitution article states that Hindi should become the official national language in place of the extant English. Despite the perception, Hindi is not yet the official national language. Even though there is no a constitutional documentation, it is the most spoken language in the nation. The government has incorporated it, the federal system and most of the education system as the primary language, which is mainly in the central and the northern side of India.
Just like it is in America, English is spoken widely in India. Its usage is in tertiary education systems and some parts of the government. Earlier, English received some delegation to a minor official language after a few years of competition with Hindi. The constitution has no determined official language. It has left Hindi and English to take the dominance over the other minor in place. Both are used for official and federal purposes too.
In the United States, there a few symbols which are used to represent the nation from the cultural perspective of sociology. The most significant symbols are; the star and stripes of the United States flag, there is also the great seal of the USA, the nation's bird, and the white house (Campbell & Kean, 2016). The list can grow longer, but those are just but a few which represent the country at large. All these symbols can have an association with one thing, which is power; this is something that the country is also known for in a long time. From being the most powerful nation in the world, the state has some reserved perspectives of strength. When it comes to ammunition, America is designated a parcel of an indomitable force.
On the Indian culture, the focus is mainly on religions for the multicultural state. The primary symbol of the nation's culture is religion. All along, the Indian culture domination is by the Dharmic religions. They are the bases towards giving shape to the music, philosophy, art, and literature of the Indian nation (Whitesell, Mitchell & Spicer, 2009). The religion concerns the spread of Buddhism and Hinduism. There are also other dharmic religions which grow as minors in the society; this includes the Sikhs and the Jains. In general, they are called the Indian religions. They are termed to be one of the major religions in the world.
While the united states do not appreciate the Muslim religion, India incorporates a lot of Muslims. The American government term Muslims as radical and as a risk of terrorism. It has led to campaigns against the Muslim religion into the country. Things are different in indie; they appreciate the Muslim faith with no negative perception.
Cultural behaviors are the learned behaviors as portrayed by human beings in their daily lives. This behavior defers from a place to another due to the exposure to different social condition during growth. In America, one of their behavior is that they value a lot of privacy; this is, for example, the access to other people's property, one is not allowed to access the homesteads of others without an appointment, it does not just literally. The American people are also installed with them the etiquettes to deal with people; they appreciate the value of being kind to others and being humble in their undertakings. Most American's enjoy having fun during free times. It is because they spend most of their time working, so, during weekends, they tend to spend time having fun.
In India, one of the most valued behavior was cooperation. There is a significant value that is attached to cooperation which is traceable from the past. In one, it was very crucial to the family's survival. Because of the strong bond and perception felt while being in a group, the competition was rare, in fact, everyone worked towards achieving the well good of each other and the primary social institutions too. It feels secure being a member of a group and that is not the same case in being left out not only in a lower position but also in a higher one. It makes the Indian code of conduct to allow just the competition with oneself and not with others. The cooperation is soo intense to the extent that they believe democracy is the consent of consensus and not indeed as the description, the majorities' imposition.
The two cultures have a similarity in the point that they are value etiquettes and modesty. Both cultures appreciate the qualities of being humble; it is a good sign of valuing each other without belittling others. Even when one has achieved so much, it will only be wise if they do not despise the others because, in the future, they might also have met their targets.
Refers to the physical aspects and resources that culture has an association with at any given time. It might also include the places which are close and significant to a particular culture. One of the most significant materials of the American's culture is technology. Everyone in the country beginning from the children must endeavor to perfect on the use of technology. It starts from the schools where to survive; one must be able to use computers and other technological components. It happens that the United States is associated with technology because it is an innovative nation.The most significant material objects of the Indian culture are the works of art. It includes the paints, architecture, architectural decorations, and paints. The Indians have specialized in this line of talent. They produce soo many designs which at sight one can be able to give a direct relation of the Indian culture with the material. The religion of the Indian people has had a significant influence on this pieces of art. Thus most of the skills have been used on the religious lines.
In summary, every culture has their material and non-material components which cannot be taken away from them. It is these components that are used to shape the community's or even a nation's culture. As seen from the above case, India and America defer on different bases but also have some similarities; this is because some cultures are sourced from the original code of conducts while others are self-culture invented. It will not be easy to find communities with the same material objects; this is because each social society's material object often depend on their daily routine.
Farrell, J. (2013). Environmental activism and moral schemas: Cultural components of differential participation. Environment and Behavior, 45(3), 399-423.
Whitesell, N. R., Mitchell, C. M., & Spicer, P. (2009). A longitudinal study of self-esteem, cultural identity, and academic success among American Indian adolescents. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 15(1), 3.
Campbell, N., & Kean, A. (2016). American cultural studies: an introduction to American culture. Routledge.
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