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  • Culture vs. Ethinicity?

    So, do you feel that one's ethnicity motivates certain behaviors or are behaviors more driven by one's culture?

    I ask because I learned yesterday from my dad, that he is half middle eastern. (Exciting, but surreal news lol) His father was adopted in Italy (I knew this) and raised in the Italian culture but his bio parents were Iranian and Syrian.

    It got me to thinking today about how culturally, we could be raised differently while being of the same ethnicity. Which is why culturally, many people of different ethnicities residing in the US, all seem to unite. (Forget about the NFL scandal for a minute lol)

    So is a geographical culture responsible for that or is geographical ethnicity?

  • #2
    ethnicity dictates culture and culture dictates behaviour? sorta? lol

    its hard to determine D because blacks in the USA have been displaced.

    that said. look at asians? they behave much the same in the USA as they do in asia..same family values etc..
    Originally posted by MatrixTransform
    where were you before you put yourself last?
    Originally posted by TheNarrator
    Everywhere I travel, tiny life. Single-serving sugar, single-serving cream, single pat of butter. The microwave Cordon Bleu hobby kit. Shampoo-conditioner combos, sample-packaged mouthwash, tiny bars of soap. The people I meet on each flight? They're single-serving friends.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by TheNarrator View Post
      ethnicity dictates culture and culture dictates behaviour? sorta? lol
      That could be, but in the US, it seems like there is a culture unto itself that is secular, and yet offers ethnic and religious freedoms. In other countries, like the middle east sadly in some parts, people are oppressed to expressing themselves and their ethnicity.

      its hard to determine D because blacks in the USA have been displaced.
      What do you mean?

      that said. look at asians? they behave much the same in the USA as they do in asia..same family values etc..
      True, but I still think the American ''culture'' over shadows a lot of their culture. The American culture is hard to escape if you live here.

      That said, I look at my maiden name and I was raised believing that my father is 100% Italian, and while it's really cool to learn this about my ethnic background, it's causing me to wonder some things. If my grandfather had never been given up for adoption, and still followed the same path to coming to the states after he got married, my entire life would have been different. (despite living in the US) So maybe ethnicity does play a powerful role, despite living in diverse, secular ''culture.''

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      • #4
        I think culture.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Deidre View Post
          That could be, but in the US, it seems like there is a culture unto itself that is secular, and yet offers ethnic and religious freedoms. In other countries, like the middle east sadly in some parts, people are oppressed to expressing themselves and their ethnicity.

          What do you mean?
          what do i mean? they culture was kind of bastardized by being enslaved ( i dont mean that as a OMG FEEL SORRY FOR THEM , they are in fact better off for it) but their culture has therefore become a bastardization of WESTERN culture and their old african culture's.. or rather what they THINK their old culture should be.
          Originally posted by Deidre View Post


          True, but I still think the American ''culture'' over shadows a lot of their culture. The American culture is hard to escape if you live here.
          yes but they still hold onto for the most part to their values.
          Originally posted by Deidre View Post
          That said, I look at my maiden name and I was raised believing that my father is 100% Italian, and while it's really cool to learn this about my ethnic background, it's causing me to wonder some things. If my grandfather had never been given up for adoption, and still followed the same path to coming to the states after he got married, my entire life would have been different. (despite living in the US) So maybe ethnicity does play a powerful role, despite living in diverse, secular ''culture.''
          i think diversity is the doom of all cultures.
          and it is sad..and yet inevitable now
          Originally posted by MatrixTransform
          where were you before you put yourself last?
          Originally posted by TheNarrator
          Everywhere I travel, tiny life. Single-serving sugar, single-serving cream, single pat of butter. The microwave Cordon Bleu hobby kit. Shampoo-conditioner combos, sample-packaged mouthwash, tiny bars of soap. The people I meet on each flight? They're single-serving friends.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by simpleman View Post
            I think culture.
            and you had the gull to tell me i contributed nothing to these forums when i agreed with people's posts?
            it meant i agreed with them

            what the fuck is this bullshit?
            (he has me on ignore so im talking to a wall)
            Originally posted by MatrixTransform
            where were you before you put yourself last?
            Originally posted by TheNarrator
            Everywhere I travel, tiny life. Single-serving sugar, single-serving cream, single pat of butter. The microwave Cordon Bleu hobby kit. Shampoo-conditioner combos, sample-packaged mouthwash, tiny bars of soap. The people I meet on each flight? They're single-serving friends.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Deidre View Post
              So, do you feel that one's ethnicity motivates certain behaviors or are behaviors more driven by one's culture?

              I ask because I learned yesterday from my dad, that he is half middle eastern. (Exciting, but surreal news lol) His father was adopted in Italy (I knew this) and raised in the Italian culture but his bio parents were Iranian and Syrian.

              It got me to thinking today about how culturally, we could be raised differently while being of the same ethnicity. Which is why culturally, many people of different ethnicities residing in the US, all seem to unite. (Forget about the NFL scandal for a minute lol)

              So is a geographical culture responsible for that or is geographical ethnicity?
              0. At the beginnning of all research stands the question of how we proceed in order to get answers; what techniques to apply - in short: methodology.
              In this question, I am not sure how to identify "ethnic behaviour". Not saying it doesn't exist, I'd just have a hard time defining any. Examples welcome.
              That said, let's assume that simple introspection or self-observation is sufficient.
              If so, then facts about this should be available to anyone, or at least anyone with a mixed ethnic ancestry.

              1. I'd like to return the question: are there displays of, say "Italian" behaviour vs. "Syrian" or "Iranian" (or "American") behaviour?
              Episodes or habits that seem inexplicable in a purely cultural frame of analysis? Examples welcome.

              2. My ethic background has the mono-ethnic and monocultural main strain of my birthplace, but with documented admixture of German, and, if family rumours are true, English and Polish relatives. I have to say that I don't "feel" any of them.

              3. I spent a good handful of my childhood years abroad; not much compared to many others, but certainly enough to make me stand out as "different" among the locals. If that can make such a big difference for people who are co-ethnic with the peer group, and is co-cultural with most of them for most of the time, my money is on culture, and not on ethnicity.

              M

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by TheNarrator View Post
                what do i mean? they culture was kind of bastardized by being enslaved ( i dont mean that as a OMG FEEL SORRY FOR THEM , they are in fact better off for it) but their culture has therefore become a bastardization of WESTERN culture and their old african culture's.. or rather what they THINK their old culture should be.yes but they still hold onto for the most part to their values.
                I have to process this, and come back to it. I see your point, but not quite sure I agree....

                i think diversity is the doom of all cultures.
                Really? Why do you say that? I think diversity is great, it is what breeds compassion and acceptance. Otherwise, we'd all be alike and there'd be no challenges, imo.

                Originally posted by Manalysis View Post
                0. At the beginnning of all research stands the question of how we proceed in order to get answers; what techniques to apply - in short: methodology.
                In this question, I am not sure how to identify "ethnic behaviour". Not saying it doesn't exist, I'd just have a hard time defining any. Examples welcome.
                Hmmm, interesting. ''Ethnic behavior'' could be in how people of a certain ethnicity conduct themselves in front of others of the same ethnicity. Italians often kiss on both cheeks, a sign of love and greeting - is that cultural or ethnic? It appears to be ethnic, but what do you think? I say that because Italians in the US or in Italy, greet one another in this way, often times. (so it's not ''cultural?'')


                1. I'd like to return the question: are there displays of, say "Italian" behaviour vs. "Syrian" or "Iranian" (or "American") behaviour?
                Episodes or habits that seem inexplicable in a purely cultural frame of analysis? Examples welcome.
                See above.


                2. My ethic background has the mono-ethnic and monocultural main strain of my birthplace, but with documented admixture of German, and, if family rumours are true, English and Polish relatives. I have to say that I don't "feel" any of them.
                Do you enjoy the food, are you drawn to certain customs of your heritage? It might be difficult to pinpoint to be honest, now that we are openly discussing this, because how do we know that our tendency to like a particular ethnic food wasn't some form of indoctrination from childhood?

                3. I spent a good handful of my childhood years abroad; not much compared to many others, but certainly enough to make me stand out as "different" among the locals. If that can make such a big difference for people who are co-ethnic with the peer group, and is co-cultural with most of them for most of the time, my money is on culture, and not on ethnicity.
                So it was because you were out of place in another's culture that caused you to stand out you believe, and not your ethnicity. That makes sense. But, how about the Jews living in Nazi Germany. It was their ethnicity that caused them to be Hitler's target, not how they behaved culturally. For culturally speaking, they blended in with everyone else...and didn't stand out in any awkward or off beat ways. Now, Hitler was a racist bigot, but it goes to show, that he only hated people based on their ethnic labels and not on how they ''behaved.'' I imagine if a Jewish person were to have fooled him into thinking he/she were German, he wouldn't have been the wiser.

                For me now, I'm processing this news my dad shared with me, and while this doesn't change my daily life, I can't help but wonder, if I had known this as a child, what might my life look like. I know that we can all play the 'what if' game, but it really goes to show that if just one piece of the puzzle isn't precisely aligned just right in our lives, the puzzle all falls apart...or takes a different shape. And even though I'm an American, I was born in the US...if I were raised with more emphasis on my middle eastern background than Italian, would I behave differently, now? Despite being an American, is my question. It's sort of rhetorical, but something to ponder.

                We only know what we know, and that is our ''truth.'' But, when we learn more, it's hard not to play the ''what if'' game.
                Last edited by Deidre; 09-29-2017, 12:49 AM.

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                • #9
                  Ethnicity is genetics.
                  Culture is environment.

                  So the crux of the question is the classic "nature vs nurture" question.

                  For simplicity's sake I'd say that ethnicity dictates IQ (obviously a distribution) while culture is among other things a code of morality.

                  As such I'd argue that culture has a bigger impact on decisions and behavior that contain a moral component, whereas the genetic component may play a bigger role in morally neutral decisions.

                  I do think IQ sets the table for a person's ability to deviate rationally from the cultural morality instilled by their upbringing.
                  "...but when she goes off you, she will not just walk away, she will walk away with your fucking skin in a jar." ~~ DoctorRandomercam
                  "The laws of man, they don't apply when blood gets in a woman's eye" - The Black Keys

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Deidre View Post
                    Really? Why do you say that? I think diversity is great, it is what breeds compassion and acceptance. Otherwise, we'd all be alike and there'd be no challenges, imo.
                    have you looked outside lately D? or on the fake news? or the youtube real news?

                    no. it does not. it makes our differences go away for one hence kills culture.. think big picture... its inevitable it kills ALL cultures.

                    and.. you think it breeds compassion? and acceptance?

                    look at western society currently.. its a product of multiculturalism and feminism....... you still think it breeds those two?
                    Originally posted by MatrixTransform
                    where were you before you put yourself last?
                    Originally posted by TheNarrator
                    Everywhere I travel, tiny life. Single-serving sugar, single-serving cream, single pat of butter. The microwave Cordon Bleu hobby kit. Shampoo-conditioner combos, sample-packaged mouthwash, tiny bars of soap. The people I meet on each flight? They're single-serving friends.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Mifune View Post
                      Ethnicity is genetics.
                      Culture is environment.

                      So the crux of the question is the classic "nature vs nurture" question.

                      For simplicity's sake I'd say that ethnicity dictates IQ (obviously a distribution) while culture is among other things a code of morality.

                      As such I'd argue that culture has a bigger impact on decisions and behavior that contain a moral component, whereas the genetic component may play a bigger role in morally neutral decisions.

                      I do think IQ sets the table for a person's ability to deviate rationally from the cultural morality instilled by their upbringing.
                      Good thoughts to think over. Thank you.

                      Originally posted by TheNarrator View Post
                      have you looked outside lately D? or on the fake news? or the youtube real news?

                      no. it does not. it makes our differences go away for one hence kills culture.. think big picture... its inevitable it kills ALL cultures.

                      and.. you think it breeds compassion? and acceptance?

                      look at western society currently.. its a product of multiculturalism and feminism....... you still think it breeds those two?
                      Hmmm, feminism is manufactured diversity to be honest, but multiculturalism...that's inevitable. The world is a very big place, and we are destined to all overlap our 'diversity.'' Not sure if I'm misreading your point, but natural diversity is inevitable. We are not all the same cultures, ethnicity, religions...and thank goodness for that, lest we become like North Korea?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Deidre View Post
                        Hmmm, feminism is manufactured diversity to be honest, but multiculturalism...that's inevitable. The world is a very big place, and we are destined to all overlap our 'diversity.'' Not sure if I'm misreading your point, but natural diversity is inevitable. We are not all the same cultures, ethnicity, religions...and thank goodness for that, lest we become like North Korea?
                        nah it wasnt inevitable before the last 3 decades.
                        but it is now.
                        Originally posted by MatrixTransform
                        where were you before you put yourself last?
                        Originally posted by TheNarrator
                        Everywhere I travel, tiny life. Single-serving sugar, single-serving cream, single pat of butter. The microwave Cordon Bleu hobby kit. Shampoo-conditioner combos, sample-packaged mouthwash, tiny bars of soap. The people I meet on each flight? They're single-serving friends.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Manalysis View Post
                          0. At the beginnning of all research stands the question of how we proceed in order to get answers; what techniques to apply - in short: methodology.
                          In this question, I am not sure how to identify "ethnic behaviour". Not saying it doesn't exist, I'd just have a hard time defining any. Examples welcome.
                          That said, let's assume that simple introspection or self-observation is sufficient.
                          If so, then facts about this should be available to anyone, or at least anyone with a mixed ethnic ancestry.
                          Ahhh.. my philosopher friend...

                          There are actually a body of study of feral children, where you can compare their behaviour from all around the world. and it makes no difference if the feral child is russian or indian or african, they all behave pretty much the same... So when it comes down to basic stuff we are all the same, sme instincts same mentality... whatever difference you find between a feral child and a nurtured child... that is culture.

                          With this in consideration, I think that culture is the main factor here.

                          1. I'd like to return the question: are there displays of, say "Italian" behaviour vs. "Syrian" or "Iranian" (or "American") behaviour?
                          Episodes or habits that seem inexplicable in a purely cultural frame of analysis? Examples welcome.
                          To answer short: NO.

                          2. My ethic background has the mono-ethnic and monocultural main strain of my birthplace, but with documented admixture of German, and, if family rumours are true, English and Polish relatives. I have to say that I don't "feel" any of them.
                          I am going to say something probably a bit ignorant here... but I think your place of birth does not have a strong culture identifiers... in the sense that other places have cultures that make more noise and use more bright colors... No that I am saying that it is bad, I actually like the neutrality and sobriety of it...

                          Strong noisey cultures usually come on places that have identity problems... In south america culture makes a lot of noise... for instance carnivals... then the great body of identity music, for instance... songs that do nothing but say "I am Argentinian" or "I am Venezuelan"... just to remember that they are not Spaniards...

                          3. I spent a good handful of my childhood years abroad; not much compared to many others, but certainly enough to make me stand out as "different" among the locals. If that can make such a big difference for people who are co-ethnic with the peer group, and is co-cultural with most of them for most of the time, my money is on culture, and not on ethnicity.

                          M
                          Yeah, that is a good point too... probably not as dramatic and the feral children I made... but still... few years in foreign cultures and you are already perceive as a foreigner in your town of birth...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Deidre View Post
                            Hmmm, interesting.
                            Yes, it is a good question.
                            However, I think it might be fruitful to retreat to an even more basic level than methodology, and just look at txonomy/identity/semantics.
                            The esteemed Mifune-San proposes that "ethnicity" is "nature", which is a codeword for "genetics", and that shifts the whole discussion.
                            Which also spotlights that perhaps the terms "ethnicity" and "culture" may not have been defined sufficiently distinct from one another.

                            As an example, Americans of Japanese extraction would be "genetically" Japanese, but being perhaps 3rd or 4th generation "American", they will be ... "ethnically"? ....
                            or is it "culturally" Japanese?
                            Or do you mean that they - even if perhaps only in a kinda-sorta way - maintain "Japanese" traditions in family life, while acting or being "American" in public, i.e. among other Americans?
                            If the latter, isn't that just straddling two cultures? Where we might perhaps label one of these cultures "ethnic" and the other one "cultural"?
                            Not a "Aha!" trick question, just to clarify terms.
                            The main importance of the point is that when it comes to remedies, one had better have the right analysis, i.e. understanding of any issue.
                            real understanding in the real world, that is.


                            ''Ethnic behavior'' could be in how people of a certain ethnicity conduct themselves in front of others of the same ethnicity. Italians often kiss on both cheeks, a sign of love and greeting - is that cultural or ethnic? It appears to be ethnic, but what do you think? I say that because Italians in the US or in Italy, greet one another in this way, often times. (so it's not ''cultural?'')
                            That is the question, isn't it?
                            For the sake of argument, let me take the position that I say that these are both "cultural". One culture has its root in an ethnic background ("historic environment"), while the other one has its roots in the ethnicity which is not background, but present reality ("present environment"). That would make the difference one of time and place, but on the same level, that of culture.
                            If I were to go Mifunish, I'd have to say that there are "Italian genes" that make Italians kiis on the cheeks, or, in your case, say, "Iranian genes" that make you love gormeh sahbzi more than hamburgers, and Tahdig more than cheeze doodles, Idk. Tbh, I doubt we can find explanations on this level. Perhaps there are genetic differrences that code for different behaviour, We know that they may code for different looks (colour of hair, skin, eyes, etc.), i.e. physical traits, and it would be surprising, because statistically improbable (I assume) that there are physical differnces and no behavioral differences; otoh, they are probably hard to identify.

                            Do you enjoy the food, are you drawn to certain customs of your heritage?
                            Yes
                            ... but all of them.

                            It might be difficult to pinpoint to be honest, now that we are openly discussing this, because how do we know that our tendency to like a particular ethnic food wasn't some form of indoctrination from childhood?
                            Yes, that was a point I made, or tried to make, in many discussions with Maxx, that it takes a very skilled, if not omniscient, observer, to separate natural from cultural behaviour. It's like trying to make a visual separation of the gin and the tonic in a gin and tonic.

                            So it was because you were out of place in another's culture that caused you to stand out you believe, and not your ethnicity.
                            No, sorry, I guess my description was incomplete; of course abroad I stood out as a foreigner, but the curious thing for me was that I stood out back home once we had returned there, although I didn't have foreign/immigrant parents, although my mother tongue was their mother tongue, although I looked like them and, for that matter, was genetically in the same group as them, was a citizen of the same country, etc .... iow, not a stranger in any way, except for having been exposed to a different culture for a short period of time; yet apparently (more than) enough to make an observable difference.

                            But, how about the Jews living in Nazi Germany. It was their ethnicity that caused them to be Hitler's target, not how they behaved culturally. For culturally speaking, they blended in with everyone else...and didn't stand out in any awkward or off beat ways /.../
                            Yes and no. First of all, the Nazi defintion of a Jew included a lot of people who were not, or were no longer Jews, if one considers to be a purely religious property; and that was of course because the Nazis saw it not as a religious, but as a "racial", i.e. genetic propery.
                            And otoh their behaviour _did_ stick out, because many of them were small buiness tradesmen and/or professionals, awakening the envy and hatred of the even poorer proletariat, or "common worker", if that is a more suitable term. One of the (many) pretexts for the 1938 Kristallnacht was a boycott declared by non-german Jews as a protest against the infamous Nuremberg Laws. While the protesters were on the right side, their tactics served the purposes of the Nazis well.

                            Now, Hitler was a racist bigot, but it goes to show, that he only hated people based on their ethnic labels and not on how they ''behaved.''
                            I imagine if a Jewish person were to have fooled him into thinking he/she were German, he wouldn't have been the wiser.
                            Yes. Like you brought to the fore above, a 'genetic' position would be something that the individual could not overcome, or could only overcome by massive intervention and/or support. [/QUOTE]
                            No; except that meat tastes lovely.


                            M

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                            • #15
                              I'll come back to your points, Manalysis - thank you for taking the time to share them.

                              In other news, my dad basically told me that I'm on my own in terms of incorporating the middle eastern side of my heritage into my life. I asked him to join me later to go to this local middle eastern market, and he said that he doesn't want to be ''a part of this.'' He doesn't want his clients ''finding out'' that he's middle eastern. I can't even believe that he is afraid he will lose business if people know this. What?

                              My father can't separate the middle east from radical Islam is really more of what this is about, and I explained to him that there are many Christians who live in the middle east, and he said that the ''culture'' is Islam. We got into an argument because I told him that he shouldn't be ashamed of being middle eastern. I can't even believe we are arguing over this, but that's where life is right now. My husband thinks it's pretty cool, but he told me that I should try to understand my father, in that he wasn't told he was middle eastern until after he was married to my mom, and that his whole upbringing had nothing to do with that. I'm trying to understand and will respect my father's wish to not be a part of this, but he should respect me that I want to explore this. When it comes to respect, it's always a one way road with my dad. :/

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