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When Cultures Collide: The Challenges Of Raising African Children In A Foreign Country

1031 words - 4 pages

It is our cultural heritage that determines how we interact with different people. Cultural heritage is learned through the techniques of our parents, peer groups, schools, religious institutions, government agencies, media, and/or the village community. This learning process also guides the way we speak, how we dress, our lifestyle, food, value system, beliefs, artifacts, and the environment in which we live in. In essence, cultural heritage reflects ones language, ones ways of thinking, art and laws, as well as religion. In addition, learned behavior is defined as being transmitted from one generation to another through the process of enculturation.

Furthermore, people have the urge to better themselves by becoming educated. In doing so they tend to move from one place of residence to another for a variety of reasons. Such as for greener pastures, a sense of adventure, and in the case of some African nations it is because of frustration, as a result of deliberating economy, and others just want to change their lifestyle. However, people tend to struggle when it comes to being culturally fit. Everyone wants to fit in and look the part when it comes to how we dress, look, act, talk and even walk. Culture defines us and defines who you are as a person. Those characteristics are the way people are perceived when it comes to their culture and personality.

Another difficulty cultures deal with is language and the way people speak. In some cases, people struggle to belong by making changes in the way they speak the English language just to be assimilated. They attempt to use words and letters, as well as body language that fit in the norm; all in an attempt to denounce their original intonation and style of pronunciation. One of the hardest languages to speak is English, and it is also difficult for immigrants to try to speak like Americans.

Moreover, every cultural heritage is manifested in their pattern of clothing and dressing. The way people dress differentiates culture, country, generation or group of people from another. For example, Africa is the second largest continent in the world and it has an elegant, flashy and distinguished look of African clothing. The affluent look defines the African culture. African women has classy, gorgeous styles, while men look outstanding in their chief fancy outfits.

Also, out in the foreign countries, first-generation African immigrants celebrate and engage in various social activities ranging from cultural show and fundraising to family or community reunions. The African culture, is manifested in the way they live their lives, as well as their value system and symbolic nature that have been passed along by word of...

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