Cultural Assignment

Cultural Assignment Words: 674

Organizational Communication I struggled with this assignment and I found it very difficult to determine cultural body language movements for the African American culture. However, what I found is over the years the African American culture has blended with the white American culture. There are historical facts regarding slavery and how that impacted the African American culture. Through art, music, and dance the African American’s found their outlet for self expression. Today a lot of black Americans hold onto their own culture through their interactions at church, which includes enthusiastic singing; this is an expression of their culture.

It’s quite fascinating and uplifting attending services at an African American congregational church. African American Body language and cultural issues: They carry themselves in a way that exhibits strength. African dance moved north from the south. Families are brought together through food. Soul food – plays an important role in the African American culture and traditionally these foods are high in fat. However, over the years they have tried to remove trans- fats from their diets. African Americans observe ethnic holidays alongside traditional holidays.

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We now have black history month which focuses on the lives and history of African Americans. They will refer to each other as sister and brother – even though they are not related. It is used as a sign of respect. The salutation “mam” is also used in some cases as a sign of respect. Families often include extended families living under one roof. Hispanic body language and culture issues: A simple toss of something can be considered insulting. If you need to give something to someone don’t toss it – walk over and hand it to them. Stupid – is considered a huge insult. Gringo – is not an insult – just means foreigner.

The hand gestures come here – means you are romantically interested in that person. Hugs and kisses – Hispanic culture is very emotional. Family ties include parent, grandparents, sisters, brothers, and children. Different holidays – Christmas is celebrated on the 24th and the Santa celebration is done on the January, 7th. They don’t celebrate Halloween or Thanksgiving. Touching – they will hold hands without thinking about it. Differences between Latin (Hispanic) culture and African American The term “Hispanic” is used in the United States to describe all people of Latino and Spanish descent.

It is a broad ethic classification including individuals who originated from the Dominican Republic, Spain, Puerto Rico, and about 20 to 30 other regions. According to the federal guidelines, Hispanics are classified as white Hispanic or black Hispanic. Our federal government doesn’t recognize Hispanic as a race, only an ethnicity. If you ask a Hispanic child what is your race he/she most often will tell you Spanish, or Hispanic; he/she will very rarely say white. However, the federal guidelines do recognize African American or black as a race. The two cultures are different, yet very similar.

They both have extended families who they share their living quarters with even though they are not really related. Hispanics like close quarters; they like touching, hugging, and kissing. It is not uncommon for Spanish woman to hold hands. They are considered to be a very sensual population. African Americans also believe in the extended family concept. I have the benefit of working with both Hispanic and African American individuals and I find through personal experience that Hispanic individuals are very upbeat, friendly, emotional, and very touching.

They want to be physically close to the individual with whom they are speaking. In addition, the African American individuals I work with have some of the same cultural characteristics; however, they are a little more reserved. Both cultures are close to family, both treat their mothers with the highest respect, and they both gather around food. Every party no matter how small has an enormous amount of food. And, I believe individuals in both cultures to be hard working and just trying to hold on to some of their individuality and stay true to their heritage.

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