Tuesday, April 28, 2009

English Essay

I wrote this for my English class and thought it was pretty interesting.
Please do not copy. But feel free to par-ooze =] 
REMEMBER: Plagiarising is bad *shakes fist*

Culture is stronger than the individual.

Although individuality allows such freedoms as expressions and speech, such things would not be inspired if not for the many cultures and traditions that people belong to and are surrounded by. Therefore, culture is stronger than the individual because it is these cultures that create who we are as individuals. They mould people from a young age to believe and feel a certain way, lend security for individuality to be expressed and are free of judgement and prejudice of the individual as everyone is from the same background. 

Even when people feel very strongly about their individuality, their upbringing and values of their culture are still stronger traits. An example of this is Peter Weir's film 'Witness'. The protagonist John Book finds himself in a conflicting position where he can either conform to the Amish society's ways or stand up for the honour of others-which is what would be expected in his home of metropolitan Philadelphia. Ultimately, he does as he was brought up to do and uses violence. This further proves the point that because of the traits that his culture has so strongly enforced into him, he is unable to conform to Amish ways, despite strongly wanting to.

Another way in which culture proves to be stronger then individuality is the sense of belonging it instils into its people. No matter how overbearing individual wants may be to adopt another culture, there is no guarantee that the said culture will be willing to accept the individual as instead of being viewed as a singular person, they will be judged by the culture they had come from. Such prejudice is shown in Oodgeroo Noonuccal's short story 'we look after our own'. A nun easily turns away a dying man purely because of his skin colour. Even after denying she was "prejudice [and] racist" the nun still refuses to care for the man, forcing his daughter to care for him until his death. This reinforces her belief that " [Her people] look after [their] own" because had they been amongst others of the same ethnicity and culture, they would have been easily accepted.

There is no such risk if always surrounded by people of the same culture as they offer a security from the rest of the world. Cultures offer a community that share the same language, customs and values. This commonality offers security in the sense that there are so many people with similar senses of values to rely on. In 'Witness', the character Rachel experiences this when she first takes her son to the city and has so many horrible things happen during the trip as warned by her father who said " Be careful among the English". This contrasts to her home life with her family and Amish friends, who offer a safe environment.

Overall, people from the same culture gravitate towards one another. Shared values, languages and beliefs offer security and comfort. Knowing that, the individuals rely on that safety net to avoid such things as prejudice and racism. No matter how strongly an individual may want another way of life, they will never be able to totally rid themselves of the values they were brought up with. Thus, we can conclude that culture is stronger then individuality.

Anyway, that's it. Short and sweet, yet way over the 350 word limit?!?!?!



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