Random Culture Thread

This forum is to learn about foreign cultures and habits, because language skills are not everything you need as a world citizen...

Moderator: Forum Administrators

User avatar
Saim
Posts: 4652
Joined: 2011-01-22, 5:44
Location: Poznań
Country: PL Poland (Polska)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Saim » 2017-11-23, 12:38

linguoboy wrote:
Osias wrote:From those, I only know Manson by name and never saw anybody that idolizes him...

Well, I've never heard of Lampião.

But let me ask: Is he so universally beloved in Brazil that you incorporated a tribute to him in your Olympic opening ceremonies?


What a weird way to pronounce larrikin. I would say [læɹɪkɪn], not [lɑɹkɪn].

And I had no idea it was an Australianism until now. :lol:

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 19820
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2017-12-19, 6:34

I just wanted to clarify something that I'd posted earlier (not in this thread): a post I'd made months ago about Western (especially American) pop music. I've come to realize that it's not really about Western music but rather just another one of many heritage-related issues that I have. As an Indian (by heritage and, in the event that dual citizenship is legally permitted in the US, by citizenship), I'm very attached to (some kinds of) Indian folk music (and a lot of Indian music more generally, much of which is strongly based on those folk traditions) because it's a part of my heritage that I'm afraid may be dying. I'm also pretty attached to or at least appreciative of other folk music traditions because I see those as part of people's heritage, too. I tend not to relate to other kinds of music the same way.

User avatar
Prowler
Posts: 1672
Joined: 2013-07-19, 5:09
Gender: male
Country: PT Portugal (Portugal)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Prowler » 2018-01-12, 20:36

Someone was asking this question the other day in another community I'm part of and I figured unilang would be a pretty good place for me to ask that question as well:

Have you ever wondered how different you'd possibly be if you had been born in a different country?

In my case... I guess it depends. First of all, if I had been born to different parents from my own I'd probably be a bit different personality wise than what I am right now. As for different country... well I doubt I'd have been that much different overall if I had been born in, let's say, Denmark or Slovenia. In an Asian or African country though? Well, naturally.

It'd be curious to know how I'd be if I had been born Japanese or Korean in particular. Dunno why, but if I could access an alternate reality where this happened I'd definitely do it. :hmm: . I also have a feeling I'd be quite different if I had been born in Australia, Canada or USA. For one thing, I'd call football "soccer" and that sport wouldn't even cross my mind... which seems mindblowing for me.

Thoughts?

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 19820
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-01-12, 20:46

I have no doubt that I'd be different in many ways if I was born in a different country or into a different ethnicity. I feel a lot of the arguments I've had on this forum and elsewhere prove it. My anxiety-related disorder is very much cultural, too.
Last edited by vijayjohn on 2018-01-12, 20:54, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Prowler
Posts: 1672
Joined: 2013-07-19, 5:09
Gender: male
Country: PT Portugal (Portugal)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Prowler » 2018-01-12, 20:53

vijayjohn wrote:I have no doubt that I'd be different in many ways if I was born in a different country or into a different ethnicity. I feel a lot of the arguments I've had on this forum prove it.

Yeah if I was born in Saudi Arabia or Kenya I'd definitely be quite different. Hence why I'd rather focus on the Japanese or Korean hypothesis. You know why? Because I'd be different but not as different. For one thing I'd still live in a developed nation and probably wouldn't be super religious(well some Koreans take Christianity a bit too seriously...). It's likely I'd also be into video games(I mean Japan and Korea...). And liking football isn't particularly uncommon in those countries, especially not in Japan. Korea is more geared towards baseball afaik.

So yeah, interesting hypothesis. How would my view of the world be overall? Would Europe just be a mere theme park for me with some funny looking castles?

As for "new world countries"... well if I was American... sounds a bit scary to think about that for some reason. Could turn out either a great life or a rather bad one. Australian? Probably not bad, but I can't see myself as an Aussie. Latin America? Having to fear for my life and my stuff when I go outside seems like a crazy idea for me.

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 19820
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-01-12, 20:57

I'm not sure how much time people in either Korea or Japan generally have for video games, though. My impression so far of twentysomethings in South Korea is that they are overworked at school (and cram school on top of that) and don't have time to sleep, let alone play video games. Some of their (especially online) classes may be portrayed like a video game, though. I'm not sure how different from this Japan is (I suspect not much). If you were born in either country, I think your life would actually be a lot more like mine.

I don't think you'd be all that different if you were American. :P
Last edited by vijayjohn on 2018-01-12, 21:01, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Prowler
Posts: 1672
Joined: 2013-07-19, 5:09
Gender: male
Country: PT Portugal (Portugal)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Prowler » 2018-01-12, 21:01

vijayjohn wrote:I'm not sure how much time people in either Korea or Japan generally have for video games. My impression so far of twentysomethings in South Korea is that they are overworked at school and don't have time to sleep, let alone play video games. Some of their (especially online) classes may be portrayed like a video game, though.

Still, they have a lot of gamers. Lot's of online players in Tekken and Street Fighter are Korean and Japanese. Daigo Umehara is one of the best pro Street Fighter players in the world, for example. Also, naturally Sony and Nintendo consoles sell well in both countries. Not to mention Koreans love Starcraft. They probably find a way.

Yeah that is one thing that'd suck about being Japanese or Korean. Working like a robot just so people think you work a lot. Living to work. Sounds unpleasant. Then again, the image we have of people in those countries are overworked salary men. Obviously not everyone there is a doctor or a businessman.

vijayjohn wrote:
I don't think you'd be all that different if you were American. :P

Compared to being Japanese, Korean, Saudi, Kenyan or Indian... yeah I wouldn't. But compared to other European countries or even to countries like Argentina, Brazil, etc? I'd be.

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 19820
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-01-12, 21:47

I'm just going to try to give you an idea of what it might be like if you were born Indian because, you know, I was, so that and being born in the US are the only things I can speak about from personal experience. If you want to know to what extent this informs anyone else's experience, or even to what extent this differs from other American-born Indians, I'm afraid you're going to have to figure that out yourself. Describing my own is hard enough.

If you were born to Indian parents, they will probably each have some sort of anxiety-related disorder, as a result of which you will, too. They will scrutinize all sorts of things out of what you do, likely including but not necessarily limited to: how long you sleep, what time you wake up, what time you get out of bed, the difference between those last two times, what you do immediately after getting out of bed, what time you eat your first meal of the day, what you eat, where you eat, how much you eat, how often you eat, what might be causing you to eat what you do, how much you exercise, what you do in order to exercise, which people you speak to outside of school, how often you leave the house, what your reasons are for leaving the house at any time, where you go, when you go, how you go, who you go with, your grades in every single one of your classes in school (to the point where getting any grade less than 90 out of 100 points on any assignment/exam/whatever may very well make you scared to go back home), your exact height and weight, your plans for every five-year interval in the future from now, what your interests are, how likely your interests are to make you money in their opinion, what your lifelong career plans are, how soon you get married, how soon after that you make babies, what kind of a girl you can marry, how much of a dowry you can get (not applicable to all families), your religious beliefs, your personal quirks (which they will feel perfectly free to make fun of, even when talking to complete strangers, regardless of whether you are present or not), how often you speak in front of visitors to the house who are approximately the same age as your parents, how you react when anyone else visits the house, how well you can drive a bike, how well you can drive a car, any mistakes you ever made while driving either of these things, how much time you spend studying, what exactly you study, whether you're giving equal attention to everything you're supposed to be studying, how much you read, what you read, why you read it, when you read it, where you read it, how quickly you read it, how much time you spend playing sports, what sports you do or don't like to play, how many prizes you win at school, whether those prizes are academic or sports-related, what the specific purpose of each prize was, to what extent you speak your parents' language, what time you go to bed, how long you sleep, how well you sleep, what clothes you wear, what pyjamas and/or other nightgear you wear, any mistakes you make while putting on clothes or footwear of any type, how often you do household chores, which chores you do, how well you do them, how much time you spend in front of a computer, and in general, how often they catch you doing anything they find morally objectionable. Whenever they are unhappy at you, they will feel free to throw any and all information they glean from scrutinizing all of these things right at you. Even when they are calmer, any problems you experience from the times when they are unhappy will never disappear entirely; they will just hopefully talk about all this stuff less. You really hope they talk about it less. They will tell you they need to know all these things for your own safety. They will probably believe it, too. Without any friends of any type outside of the family, you will believe it, too. They will be outraged if you complain about any of this.

User avatar
Prowler
Posts: 1672
Joined: 2013-07-19, 5:09
Gender: male
Country: PT Portugal (Portugal)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Prowler » 2018-01-12, 22:19

Sounds like a hassle.

My life tho... it's boring. If someone woke up in my shoes tomorrow they'd just count the time until they got back into their shoes again. Wouldn't be a very interesting experience.

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 19820
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-01-12, 22:46

Prowler wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:
I don't think you'd be all that different if you were American. :P

Compared to being Japanese, Korean, Saudi, Kenyan or Indian... yeah I wouldn't. But compared to other European countries or even to countries like Argentina, Brazil, etc? I'd be.

I have to ask: How do you think it would be different?

User avatar
Prowler
Posts: 1672
Joined: 2013-07-19, 5:09
Gender: male
Country: PT Portugal (Portugal)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Prowler » 2018-01-12, 23:01

vijayjohn wrote:
Prowler wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:
I don't think you'd be all that different if you were American. :P

Compared to being Japanese, Korean, Saudi, Kenyan or Indian... yeah I wouldn't. But compared to other European countries or even to countries like Argentina, Brazil, etc? I'd be.

I have to ask: How do you think it would be different?

The "American system" when it comes to education and healthcare is strikingly different from Europe's. Also, USA has a bit of a unique culture and society. If I was american I'd probably own a gun, like different sports than football, drive everywhere, be in crippling debt from uni, would have left my parent's home at 18-19, etc. Not ot mention my view of the world would be way different and most likely more limited.

There's more but hard to explain really.

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 19820
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-01-22, 3:31

Prowler wrote:If I was american I'd probably own a gun, like different sports than football, drive everywhere, be in crippling debt from uni, would have left my parent's home at 18-19, etc.

I think I probably forgot to respond to this earlier, but for whatever it's worth, I am American, and literally none of this is true of me (the "drive everywhere" part is the only one that's even close, but it's not a good idea for the purpose of going downtown here, where parking is difficult to find). I also don't see how a different education and healthcare system make you a different person. I think it's fair to say I do have a very different worldview from most Europeans, but I also think that has far more to do with my Indian heritage than with the fact that I'm American.

Here's another question for y'all: How important is the concept of privacy to you? What would you count as "gossip"? What's your threshold for it? To what extent can you tolerate other people doing what you would consider gossiping about you? How do you feel about other people talking about you in general? Does it matter whether it's in front of you or behind your back? Would you require someone who was doing that to ask for your permission first? Does it matter what exactly they're saying or talking about? What kinds of things about you would be too intimate to be revealed? (Favorite food? Favorite color? Musical preferences? Number of sexual partners you've had? How often you brush your teeth? The details of a medical operation you had recently, if you had one?).

I suspect that there might be cultural differences w.r.t. stuff like this. In my case, if I tell someone that something is a secret or that I don't want it to be revealed to everyone, I trust them to keep that much information, and I generally don't share my address, phone number, license plate number, etc. with other people (unless, for example, they want to send me something). There are also some things I deliberately hide from my parents (for example, I almost never tell them about anything I'm doing on UniLang). Apart from that, though, I'm not sure there's any other information about me that I'd consider confidential. Because of this, I'm somewhat concerned that I might be overly, though unintentionally, insensitive to how other people I interact with feel about this issue. Here at home, my parents say whatever they want about me to whoever they want regardless of whether I'm around or not. I suppose I could be offended by this, but honestly, the issues I have with my parents are bigger than that, so I don't care that much.

User avatar
Aurinĭa
Forum Administrator
Posts: 3551
Joined: 2008-05-14, 21:18
Gender: female
Country: BE Belgium (België / Belgique)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Aurinĭa » 2018-01-22, 11:59

vijayjohn wrote:I also don't see how a different education and healthcare system make you a different person.

If you're a healthy person, differences in health care shouldn't matter much, no. If you're a person with fairly bad health problems, only having access to a healthcare system that doesn't provide care to the level you need it, then that can absolutely have an impact on your personality. As can crippling (medical/student) debt.

User avatar
Car
Forum Administrator
Posts: 10160
Joined: 2002-06-21, 19:24
Real Name: Silvia
Gender: female
Country: DE Germany (Deutschland)
Contact:

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Car » 2018-01-22, 12:11

Aurinĭa wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:I also don't see how a different education and healthcare system make you a different person.

If you're a healthy person, differences in health care shouldn't matter much, no. If you're a person with fairly bad health problems, only having access to a healthcare system that doesn't provide care to the level you need it, then that can absolutely have an impact on your personality. As can crippling (medical/student) debt.

Indeed. Reading about how (IIRC middle class) Americans could only afford a certain number of cancer treatment sesssions before they ran out of money and died. I mean I knew in theory what it's like, but reading actual examples like that, that's so hard to fathom for a country as rich as the US. You really have to be healthy and not think much about possible risks not to let that difference affect you.
Please correct my mistakes!

User avatar
Prowler
Posts: 1672
Joined: 2013-07-19, 5:09
Gender: male
Country: PT Portugal (Portugal)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Prowler » 2018-01-22, 12:52

vijayjohn wrote:
Prowler wrote:If I was american I'd probably own a gun, like different sports than football, drive everywhere, be in crippling debt from uni, would have left my parent's home at 18-19, etc.

I think I probably forgot to respond to this earlier, but for whatever it's worth, I am American, and literally none of this is true of me (the "drive everywhere" part is the only one that's even close, but it's not a good idea for the purpose of going downtown here, where parking is difficult to find). I also don't see how a different education and healthcare system make you a different person. I think it's fair to say I do have a very different worldview from most Europeans, but I also think that has far more to do with my Indian heritage than with the fact that I'm American.

Here's another question for y'all: How important is the concept of privacy to you? What would you count as "gossip"? What's your threshold for it? To what extent can you tolerate other people doing what you would consider gossiping about you? How do you feel about other people talking about you in general? Does it matter whether it's in front of you or behind your back? Would you require someone who was doing that to ask for your permission first? Does it matter what exactly they're saying or talking about? What kinds of things about you would be too intimate to be revealed? (Favorite food? Favorite color? Musical preferences? Number of sexual partners you've had? How often you brush your teeth? The details of a medical operation you had recently, if you had one?).

I suspect that there might be cultural differences w.r.t. stuff like this. In my case, if I tell someone that something is a secret or that I don't want it to be revealed to everyone, I trust them to keep that much information, and I generally don't share my address, phone number, license plate number, etc. with other people (unless, for example, they want to send me something). There are also some things I deliberately hide from my parents (for example, I almost never tell them about anything I'm doing on UniLang). Apart from that, though, I'm not sure there's any other information about me that I'd consider confidential. Because of this, I'm somewhat concerned that I might be overly, though unintentionally, insensitive to how other people I interact with feel about this issue. Here at home, my parents say whatever they want about me to whoever they want regardless of whether I'm around or not. I suppose I could be offended by this, but honestly, the issues I have with my parents are bigger than that, so I don't care that much.


Well it's a generalisation sure, but if I was American it'd be way more statistically likely that I'd own a gun, like different sports, etc. Also my world view would be very American centric. I also would only speak English most likely. Politically speaking I'd probably be different.

Healthcare might not make you a different person but different education certainly does. Education is different among different countries and regions. And my education if I was American would contribute to me havign an American-centric view of the world.

Ofc, I'd be even more different if I had been Japanese or something like that, but I doubt I'd be very different if I had been born greek or dutch.

Talking behind my back? Well, for one thing, if they talk behind my back I cant' really know if they're doing it, can I? Unless someone tells me about it. Depends on the things they say about me and such, I guess.

Privacy? Well I like being left alone.

Favourite food/colour/music intimate details? Not at all. Number of sexual partners? that is just rude to ask. How often I brush my teeth? I'd assume they were implying my teeth were dirty.

User avatar
Osias
Posts: 7245
Joined: 2007-09-09, 17:38
Real Name: Osias Junior
Gender: male
Location: Vitória
Country: BR Brazil (Brasil)
Contact:

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Osias » 2018-01-22, 15:56

Car wrote:
Aurinĭa wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:I also don't see how a different education and healthcare system make you a different person.

If you're a healthy person, differences in health care shouldn't matter much, no. If you're a person with fairly bad health problems, only having access to a healthcare system that doesn't provide care to the level you need it, then that can absolutely have an impact on your personality. As can crippling (medical/student) debt.

Indeed. Reading about how (IIRC middle class) Americans could only afford a certain number of cancer treatment sesssions before they ran out of money and died. I mean I knew in theory what it's like, but reading actual examples like that, that's so hard to fathom for a country as rich as the US. You really have to be healthy and not think much about possible risks not to let that difference affect you.

I understand USA have no universal health care, but I don't get why it doesn't have paid health insurance. I mean, at least for the middle class or something.
2017 est l'année du (fr) et de l'(de) pour moi. Parle avec moi en eux, s'il te plait.

User avatar
linguoboy
Posts: 21440
Joined: 2009-08-25, 15:11
Real Name: Da
Location: Chicago
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby linguoboy » 2018-01-22, 16:02

Osias wrote:I understand USA have no universal health care, but I don't get why it doesn't have paid health insurance. I mean, at least for the middle class or something.

It does. But not everyone can afford it. In particular, for odd historical reasons (related to wage controls introduced during WWII), most middle-class people obtain it through work. So losing your job often means losing your health coverage as well. You can see how this would work out particularly badly for those too sick to work.

These are some of the reasons why the Affordable Care Act was introduced in the first place.
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

User avatar
linguoboy
Posts: 21440
Joined: 2009-08-25, 15:11
Real Name: Da
Location: Chicago
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby linguoboy » 2018-01-22, 16:12

Prowler wrote:Well it's a generalisation sure, but if I was American it'd be way more statistically likely that I'd own a gun

But you'd still be more likely not to own one than to own one. Less than a third of Americans are gun owners and they are concentrated in rural areas; in urban areas, that proportion drops to less than 20%. Roughly 30% of that 30% who own guns (so 9% of all Americans) own five guns or more, and a very small percentage of this minority own a lot of guns, so that drives up the per-capita figures for the USA as a whole. But that still doesn't mean most of us own guns. White men are the most likely to own guns of any demographic group, but this figure correlates negatively with greater educational attainment. So for people with college degrees, it's only 25%.

So do you really have reason to think that if you were American, you'd be less educated and more likely to live in a rural area than an urban one?
Last edited by linguoboy on 2018-01-22, 22:56, edited 1 time in total.
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 19820
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-01-22, 22:32

Also, the fact that Americans are more likely to do something than Europeans are doesn't necessarily mean you would do the same thing if you were American.
Prowler wrote:Healthcare might not make you a different person but different education certainly does. Education is different among different countries and regions. And my education if I was American would contribute to me havign an American-centric view of the world.

Except that there's more to education than just what you learn in school.

User avatar
Prowler
Posts: 1672
Joined: 2013-07-19, 5:09
Gender: male
Country: PT Portugal (Portugal)

Re: Random Culture Thread

Postby Prowler » 2018-01-23, 3:36

linguoboy wrote:
Prowler wrote:Well it's a generalisation sure, but if I was American it'd be way more statistically likely that I'd own a gun

But you'd still be more likely not to own one than to own one. Less than a third of Americans are gun owners and they are concentrated in rural areas; in urban areas, that proportion drops to less than 20%. Roughly 30% of that 30% who own guns (so 9% of all Americans) own five guns or more, and a very small percentage of this minority own a lot of guns, so that drives up the per-capita figures for the USA as a whole. But that still doesn't mean most of us own guns. White men are the most likely to own guns of any demographic group, but this figure correlates negatively with greater educational attainment. So for people with college degrees, it's only 25%.

So do you really have reason to think that if you were American, you'd be less educated and more likely to live in a rural area than an urban one?

Maybe, but it's more statistically likely for an American to own a gun legally than for a European... perhaps the only few places in Europe where you're more statistically likely to own a gun legally are Serbia and Cyprus. Maybe Finland?

Well, I gotta keep every possibility in check. Huge country and 300M people... I could be born anywhere there. Not necessarily in NYC or LA. It's obvious not a rule that I'd be very different but it's quite a possibility. This is all hypothetical, though.


Return to “Culture”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest