Culture- First Reflection Paper

Cultural Spaces

I believe my understanding of cultural space to be much like many others, such as a certain part of a state or town. As we discussed in our first class, it is difficult to truly define where a culture starts and stops, so this post is mainly my personal opinions and take on what I believe to be a culture after discussing in class and reading about the topic.

My Opinion

A culture to me is when you share strong similarities with a group of people close to you. Of course by this, I do not mean that they share every similarity with that group of people.

This culture is formed with a special kind of bond because of the similar actions and beliefs but may be presented in different context.  I mean that we may share a culture with one another, but it does not mean that those people are always going to be “close.”

Example of Situations of Culture

When put into an awkward situation, I believe that even if two strangers are part of the same culture, they will connect with each other because of those similarities before they would become close with another person of another culture. An example of this is when a woman enters a room full of men and one other woman; she most likely will sit next to the woman because they are part of a similar culture.

Our reading about the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood provided a great example about how culture groups together.  This area is mainly inhabited by the Muslim nationality who have gathered together in a particular neighborhood, creating a culture.

What I find particularly interesting is that when one hears of this community, they instantly jump to their conclusions over what the community consists of. Knowing that many Muslims live there, they immediately direct their thoughts to the belief that this neighborhood is simply filled with one culture, even if others of different faith and belief also live there. If most of the community is of one nationality, do we not group them as a culture?

The answer is most likely, YES!

My Culture

As for my culture, I must tell you my background first to better understand what I believe to be my culture. I invite you to make conclusions about what you believe to be my culture, as I believe to be very much a cookie cutter American.

I am a white 22 year old female from Iowa with my nationality being both Danish and Irish. My family is Christian, with whom a couple are strongly religious and the others not as much. My dad is actually atheist, which changes some of the dynamics of our family as a whole.

I am in a committed serious relationship with a great guy. We have been dating for 2 years and have been living together for 1 year. We recently rescued a puppy from a shelter in the area and we are looking to buy a home together.

I believe my culture to be defined by my gender, ethnicity, and area of my home. My culture enjoys time with family, works hard and plays hard, and would help any person in need. I am proud of the people of Iowa for these reasons. I strongly believe that this is quite unique to my culture and not in others around the area.

In all, not everyone will see or describe culture as the same thing, it is just one of those things that is too complex to put a label on.


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