Perspectives on Diversity and Culture:

 Perspectives on Diversity and Culture:

Culture has many different meanings for many of us. For some it refers to an appreciation of music, art, food, clothing, things we discussed, even what we read. Cultures are not the product of just one person. Culture continuously evolve around a group of people sharing ideas and interacting with the environment. Cultural patterns such as language and politics make no sense except in terms of the interaction of people.

I was curious and wanted to know if my family member shared and viewed culture and diversity the way I viewed culture and diversity. I was elated to know that my family member shared her views on culture much the way we were taught and evolved in society and our region.

Family Member Response:

Culture is complexed, but diversity is easy for me because of our up-bringing and rules in our home. Culture is a belief, knowledge, morals, and customs shared by family members. Diversity is simply acceptance of other people beliefs as being real and important to them.

Friend Response:

     Diversity is showing no discrimination of minorities or other social groups different than my own. Diversity is being able to work with people from different groups and backgrounds, get along together without conflicts and fighting. Culture is the way we dress, the foods we eat, and how we act in the world.

Colleague Response:

   Culture is many different traditions that distinguishes social groups in a specific society. Culture refers language, traditions, morals, clothing, food, and beliefs that set peoples apart from others.  Diversity is a natural part of life and meant to serve the group and its members, allow the social groups to express themselves without biases. Society should embrace diversity through acceptance advancements from the contributions of their unique members. Diversity allows each social group to excel and celebrate their unique differences.

  • Which aspects of culture and diversity that I have studied in this course are included in the answers I received—and what are some examples?

All answers given from the three responses have validity. The three response related that culture is unique to its own social group. Our resource reading for this week, “ Beyond culture clash”: Understanding of immigrant experiences, illustrates the ways that culture and identity are constructed within the double movement of discourse and representation. It offers examples of how dominant representations create simplistic understandings of the identities of immigrant youth, as well as the ways youth are constructing new identities (Ngo, (2008). This is one example from the course reading that exemplify the true meaning of culture and identities.

In order to account for the complexity of different cultures and diversity in families’ experiences, and the ever-changing nature of culture and identity, we need to move beyond just understandings of culture and diversity and move forward in creating significant changes in attitudes.

  • Which aspects have been omitted—and what are some examples of such omission?

   The responses did not address the true meaning of family and how it relates to culture awareness and identity. Subjectivity has to come into play if we are going to truly address and understand how cultures are different and similar. As professionals, educators, policy makers, advocates, and community workers we must have an understanding of cultures that are different, yet we all share pride in our way of life.

  • In what ways has thinking about other people’s definitions of culture and diversity influenced my own thinking about these topics?

   I feel all cultures have universal traits, different cultures have developed their own specific ways of carrying out or expressing them. Culture and society are not the same thing.  While cultures are complexes of learned behavior patterns and perceptions, societies are groups of interacting social groups. In societies are groups of people who directly or indirectly interact with each other.  People in human societies also generally perceive that their society is distinct from other societies in terms of shared traditions and expectations.

While human societies and cultures are not the same thing, they are connected because culture is created and transmitted to others in a society.  Cultures are groups working and interacting together in a tradition manner.  They are the continuously changing and growing, we must grow with them.

Reference

Ngo, B. (2008). Beyond “culture clash”: Understanding of immigrant experiencesTheory into Practice, 47(1), 4–11.
Retrieved from the Walden Library using the Education Research Complete

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6 thoughts on “Perspectives on Diversity and Culture:

  1. Birdie,
    Thank you for once again sharing your insight! I think that culture and diversity are such broad topics that when I sat to speak with people they had to really think about what they were going to say. I got responses like “well culture is…no I mean…well” Yet being that they are such broad topics I also found it amazing that when i really looked at their answers, they were worded differently but they were all the same!
    ~Jessica

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    • Jessica,
      As I reflect back on my discussions with culture being defined, the words were different, but we all arrived at the same place. A broad topic, but easy to understand that we must be aware of cultural differences and respect families and children as they come to our classrooms.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Birdie,
    Thank you for sharing this great blog. I mostly enjoyed how the definition of diversity was narrowed done to “acceptance.” Acceptance is diversity; we learn and accept the differences of others. I also found it interesting how food and clothing always come up. Although these things do not shape our identities, they can still be part of our upbringing. I know my family has tradition meals which move on with generations. How can a Latino not know how to make guacamole?

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    • Monica, I smiled as I read your blog about guacamole. I am from the south, and I have found that many cultures love fried chicken. (lol) I am so proud that being from the south increased my awareness of diversity and culture differences, and how in some ways, many cultures share similarities.

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  3. Birdie,
    Family is very important in the understanding of culture and diversity. Family can play a huge role in the identity of someone and the ways they choose to identify themselves. My family has been an huge influence on my life and the goals I strive for. I believe if I didn’t have the family I have I would be s different mentally, physically and emotionally they molded me into the wonderful person I am. My household’s culture has rules to follow and I knew that it was important to follow them. I agree that every culture has unique characteristics that make them special and every culture has a unique way of accomplishing things. Thank you for sharing!!!

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    • Thanks Shawnica!
      We are more than blessed to shared a close knit family. I use to say, “Wow, my mom and dad are so strict.” But I appreciate the strictness now that I have a daughter and grand daughter. The strictness gave me a sense of family values that I shared with my daughter. Her senior year in high school, she said, “thanks mom for being strict on me and saying “no.”

      Like

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