CULTURAL COMPARISON Cultural Comparison Latona Fullilove HIST 101 Cultural Comparison The term “culture” refers to the complex gathering of knowledge
The term “culture” refers to the complex gathering of knowledge, folklore, language, rules, rituals, habits, lifestyles, attitudes, beliefs, and customs that bond and provide a general identity to a group of people. Cultural differences are obvious from one group of people to another. It is based on many things that are passed on from one generation of people to the next. Often times people take their languages, beliefs, and values for granted. When it comes to the cultural differences of people there is no right or wrong. People should be aware of others cultures and respect the differences that are between them. Let’s take for an example the differences between Japanese, Greeks, and Egyptians such as social and cultural, political and economic, and diplomatic and military cultures that have contributed to society.
Social and Cultural
In Japan, children are the center of the family. Strong family bonds are developed early on between the mother and children. The women in Japan were expected to be secondary to men and were kept to local matters only. They were excluded from certain sacred areas and were expected to show deference to hierarchal authority in both speech and behavior. Around 1947, a new legal framework was established giving equality to both sexes, thus giving women more access to education, job opportunities and career advancement. However, the changes in the gender gap, equal pay and educational accomplishment are slow moving and the concept of total equality remains an ‘ideal’ rather than the norm at present. As far as religion, Shinto and Buddhism are Japan’s two major religions. Most Japanese consider themselves Buddhist, Shintoist or both. As of today, religion does not play a big role in the everyday life of most Japanese. (Japan Guide) Much like Japan, Greece the birth of the first child is an important event, and the child is showered with attention. Relationships with family members remain close throughout life. The women life of Greece has advanced greatly during the 20th century. Traditionally, Greece was a male-dominated society in which public life was reserved for men and private life and the home was reserved for women. In 1957, women earned the right to vote in and are now represented prominently in business divisions and at all levels of government. Women can and do inherit property equal to that of men, and although the government discourages dowries, much property is still transferred to women from their families upon marriage. (USA Today) In Egypt, they are really close to their family also. When it comes to family affairs, they pay special attention to family values and relationships. Women in Egypt are expected to be conservative and modest, in following with the Islamic principles for women. The type of relationship Egyptians have between family members encourages children to live with their parents until they get married and then start their own families. Therefore, marriage rates are high and families encourage and financially support their sons and daughters to get married. Usually the responsibilities are divided so home and childcare are the main responsibilities for women, while men are responsible for supporting the family financially. Because the family members are so connected, they deeply mourn the death of a family member. It is customary to wear only black for at least 40 days after a family member passes, and this duration can last up to a year. This is one of the traditions inherited from the grand pharaohs, and it is considered inappropriate to show any sign of happiness during funerals. Egypt and Greece both had Gods to represent each aspect of their lives but there were many differences. The Greek Gods were more centered around culture and all the emotions and actions of life through their Gods while Egypt was more focused on the calendar and movement of time, shifting of seasons and there gods reflect accordingly. Egyptians had a very strong believe in the after-life and they built all their large pyramids and structures in order to help their dead find a better life after death. The Greeks lacked such beliefs and this is why their social structure was very different from the Egyptians. (Ancient History Encyclopedia)
Political and Economic
In the political scope, the Egyptian civilization had stronger emphasis on central authority, while the Greeks had a more decentralized structure, where powers were distributed over the cities and the states as well.