Cultural Identity: The Components

Initially we should have a clarification over terms equivalent to tradition, identity and cultural identity which leads us to the American cultural identity and its elements. Culture is a really complicated term to define. "It has more than a hundred definitions." (1) To provide a easy definition and no to confused with the hundred of the definitions we can define culture as follows: tradition refers back to the customs, practices, languages, values and world views that define social teams comparable to those based on nationwideity, ethnicity, area or widespread interests.

Identity is one other time period we should know about earlier than understanding cultural identity. "The condition or character as to who a person or what a thing is."(2) The most effective way to define the term identity is an answer to the query who am I? We will say that identity is about our self-notion and perception of others. There are totally different types of identity in response to different ways of categorizing of aspects. Personal identity, social identity and collective identity are essentially the most recognizable ones. "The concept of a collective identity refers to a set of individuals' sense of belonging to the group or collective. For the individual, the identity derived from the collective shapes a part of his or her personal identity." (three) The master forces of collective identity are nationwideity, ethnicity, faith, gender, profession and decadent culture.

Cultural identity is the identity of a gaggle, culture or of a person as far as one is influenced by one's belonging to a group or culture. Then cultural identity is a collective identity.

The American cultural identity could be merely defined because the sets of values, norms and beliefs that make the American folks because the Americans. Collective identity shouldn't be in conflict with personal identity as each American has its own identity while the whole People has a particular collective identity by which they are distinguished from the British people.

Talking concerning the elements of the American cultural identity is troublesome, because there are various components that form it. To depend a few of the most important parts I am going for the following ones.

• Language
English language is among the parts that for my part have shaped the American cultural identity. It gives the Individuals a way of having a British origin and a sense that the language their ancestors spoke was English like them and I think it makes them think of their Anglo-Saxon background. English language as the most importantity of the People speak has had an amazing affect on shaping their collective identity.

• Egalitarianism
The concept of egalitarianism or having equal opportunities makes the second aspect of the American cultural identity. This sense that all of us live in a land of opportunities, while others do not and we all are equal to have opportunities to live has integrated People as a whole.

• Exceptionalism and Nationalism
The thought of exceptionalism has instilled in Americans mind via the history and consequently it has made them think that they're unique and particular individuals dwelling in a land of opportunities. They believe in American Dream they usually think that they've had this likelihood to live on this land not some other people. People imagine that they and only they are distinctive and this concept offers them a way of nationalistic point of view. Being patriot is a very common symbol of being an American and it has a lot to do with exceptionalism and nationalism. For example, US flag is considered a national image and an emblem that integrates all People to a whole.

• Liberalism
Liberalism is undoubtedly essentially the most influential factor of American cultural identity. The idea of liberalism in America is as old because the United States the place according the US Constitution the people are free to work, worship, live, travel and so on so forth as long as they respect every others' rights. Liberalism limits the influence the federal government has on the personal lives of the citizens as well. When people see that they're free to choose no matter they want under the liberalism umbrella, then they really feel they are Americans and they recognize themselves as Americans.

• Individualism
Individualism has had an incredible impact on being an American. It has a Puritan background. Individualism has helped the creation of property ownership and what is called privacy. Ownership in America is of nice significance and it provides the owner a way by which he/she feels American because they consider it a results of residing in America and believing in American beliefs. Individualism is not only about financial terms like property ownership. By way of tradition, cultural individualism is the concept that the whole Individuals see themselves as an individual from which the thought of Americanism comes from.

• Pragmatism
Pragmatism, like individualism, has a Puritan origin. Americans work very hard to achieve their goals. The query "What do you do?" is a quite common question in American culture. It means that hard-working is an important factor among Americans. People work very hard and they always think about the outcomes undermining the instruments by which they will achieve the ends. In accordance with the American multicultural context, pragmatist ideas which refuses any absolutes turned quite common because "moderately than believing in absolutes it is believed that these ideas are changeable and rely on the context in which they are being discussed." (4)

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