The Meaning and Examples of Culture
Culture is a broad umbrella phrase that encompass the informal social behaviour and attitudes observed in many human communities, and the shared beliefs, customs, practices, arts, laws, skills, talents, and behaviors of the people in those communities. There are five major components of culture: language, art, music, dance, and food. These are the basic ways in which cultures are shared throughout the world.
Within each component of culture there are significant differences, as with gender norms, legal systems, family structures, values, and norms, skin color, and even dietary restrictions. These differences may be profound, and it is not uncommon for one culture to dominate over another, especially if there has been little contact between the two cultures. There are several examples of these types of differentiation, including differences in religious beliefs, artistic expressions, and in the social roles and structures most peoples choose to fill.
The United States is a very diverse country, with different cultures influencing different regions. In the northeast part of the country you will find two communities that highly influence each other: the Irish and the Dutch. Both of these communities are fiercely loyal to their own traditions, with the Irish considering their entire population as one, and the Dutch considering themselves to be the original owners of the islands of Curacao and Bonaire. The Dutch in the northeast are heavily influenced by their culture of origin, while the Irish were influenced by the culture of their neighbors, the Dutch. The culture of the United States is highly influenced by its neighbors, and a study of a nation’s history will reveal many examples of this.