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Cultural Identity Essay

7 February 2019

A cultural identity essay is common for a student. There are numerous cultural identity essay examples and cultural identity essay topics. The illustration below is a good “cultural identity essay about myself”

Cultural Identity Essay

Personal cultural identity essay

The Hmong culture is one that exists among the Hmong people, which is an ethnic group native to numerous countries and is believed to have originated from the area called Yangtze river basin in the southern part of China. In China, they are referred to as the Miao and this consist of all of Hmong’s subgroups.  The Hmong have remained with their distinct customs, language, and ways of life throughput history while still adjusting to the ways of the nation in which they exist. Whereas many of Hmong people still reside in Laos, China, Vietnam, Thailand, and Myanmar, many have migrated from Laos since 1975 due to the fear of prosecution. After being housed in camps in Thailand in the 1980s, many have resettled in nations such as the United States, France, Australia, and Germany. Some have opted to remain in Thailand with the hope that they will return to their land one day. In the U.S, novel generations of Hmong are interweaving into American society while being taught Hmong history and culture by their elders. Most are apprehended that as the older generations pass, the knowledge and insight of Hmong among those bred in America will also pass; thus, there is an urge to preserve the culture among the younger generations.

How to Write a Cultural Identity Essay Example

The following sub-topics form cultural identity essay ideas:

Social Pattern

            The clan persists as the main organizing entity in Hmong culture. There are around 18 Hmong clans that are recognized in Thailand and Laos. Membership to a clan is inherited upon birth or sometimes via adoption. All children belong to the father’s clan, and through this, they can trace their ancestors. After being married, women become part of their husband’s family but remain with the clan name of their father. The members of a similar clan regard each other as siblings or brother and are excepted to offer mutual support to each other. Respected leaders of the clan are anticipated to assume responsibility for conflict negotiation and routinely the preserving of religious rituals. Clan members who have the same ritual practices can describe themselves on a sub-clan level.

Marriage

Hmong clan groups can be described as exogamous; this means that Hmong cannot within their clan group as a spouse must be from a different clan. Nonetheless, they are permitted to marry blood relatives from the side of the mother. For instance, the children of a sister and brother can marry since they are from different clans. Usually, when a boy has found a partner, he will clarify his intentions and will snatch her whenever he gets the chance presents itself. This sort of kidnapping is symbolic in Hmong culture. The bride price is taken as compensation for the novel family taking the daughter from her family since the girl’s parents will be short of one individual to assist with household chores (the girl’s price depends on the value attached to her or her parents). The elders from both families usually negotiate the price before the engagement and are typically paid in the form of livestock or bars or lives. It is also usually handed out as cash.

Traditional Gender Roles

Hmong culture has traditional gender roles. A man’s role entails family duty and providing physical amenities and spiritual welfare for his family. Males in Hmong culture have a structure for making decisions along with clan leaders. The man can consult his wives if they desire before making key decisions about family issues; however, the husband is perceived as the head of the home and should state the decision. Women in Hmong have the duty of nurturing children, working in farms, making meals, and feeding animals. Traditionally, females in Hmong culture take their meals after the man has eaten, particularly if they are hosting guests.

Spirituality

Modern Hmong people cannot be grouped to adhering to one belief system. Indeed, missionaries who arrived in Southeast Asia converted a large percentage of Hmong people to Christianity at the start of the nineteenth century, and a large number have become Christian after migrating from the region to the Western world. Nonetheless, most Hmong people in Asian and the West have preserved their traditional spiritual practices including ancestor veneration and shamanism. The spiritual beliefs are interweaved with beliefs associated with well-being and sickness. In the traditional practices of the Hmong culture, an individual does not detach his/her physical well-being from the spiritual well-being. The realm that involves the spirit is very influential and determines what occurs in the physical world. In accordance with these beliefs, all things possess a spirit, irrespective of whether they are animate or inanimate. A sensitive balance exists between these two realms, therefore, the need to honor and revere the ancestors for protection and guidance.  The spirits of the ancestors are believed to affect the health and welfare of the living. People conduct rituals including pouring libation, burning incense to please the spirits and get their favor, and offering of spirit money and food.

Festivals

            One prominent festival in Hmong culture is the New Year celebration. The festival is a cultural tradition that occurs yearly in selected regions where Hmong community live and an adjusted form where smaller groups gather. During the New Year festival, the Hmong people dress in traditional clothes and enjoy traditional Hmong foods, bullfights, music, dance, along with other types of entertainment. The celebrations are comprised of Hmong ethnic culture and traditions, and also serve the role of educating those who seek insight into Hmong culture. The New Year festival usually happens in November and December; this is usually after the harvest season after all work has been done. It acts as the Thanksgiving holiday for the Hmong culture.

Comparison of Hmong Culture with my Culture

            The biggest similarity in regards to communication and meaning process between the Hmong and my culture lies in the clan system. In both cultures, our primary form interaction and socialization is the clan in which a person belongs. Another similarity is the use of elders to solve conflicts. The biggest difference is the language system. Hmong have one language while in my culture, the different clans use different languages. The cultures are poised to interweave smoothly when it comes to the adoption of the father’s name by all children. On the other hand, the cultures may clash when it comes to the naming of the wife as the brides in Hmong stick to their father’s name after getting married.  The thing that my culture might assume different, hurting, and insulting from Hmong culture is the fact that cousins may marry each other. On the other hand, since members of the same clan can get married in, my culture, the Hmong may be offended by this. To that extent, there are certain things that members of my culture must be careful about when interacting with the Hmong people. First, whereas the Hmong may resemble the Thai and many of them live in Thailand, they are not Thai in any form or way. Second, the Hmong people have gone through a history of war and skirmishes, therefore it is wise to avoid such conversations around them as they may spark unrest among them.

Cultural Identity Essay

The guideline of how to develop cultural identity essays is fundamentally the same of each formatting style. The keen part that a writer should look out for is the citation format.In addition, a cultural essay should focus on examining the values and beliefs of a culture.

 

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