Cultures & Traditions

A:

One's national identity refers to the sense of belonging one has to a state or a nation, or a sense of solidarity one feels with a particular group without regard to one's actual citizenship status. This is not a trait with which people are born; rather, experiences from the common waystations of people's lives build their sense of national identity. Factors like language, national colors, national symbols, the history of the nation, blood connections, culture, cuisine, music and other factors all play a part. If one views national identity positively, it is typically called "patriotism," but if one views this negatively, it is sometimes known as "chauvinism."

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  • How Many Human Races Are There?

    Q: How Many Human Races Are There?

    A: Technically there is only one human race, as humans today are 99.9% genetically identical even though physical appearances differ from one person to another. Most of the genetic differences that do exist are due to gender and unique individual traits.
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  • What Are the Goals of the American Indian Movement?

    Q: What Are the Goals of the American Indian Movement?

    A: The American Indian Movement is an organization whose two main goals are to protect the rights of Native Americans and perpetuate the spiritual and cultural independence of the Native peoples. This organization is a formal advocacy group to advance the lives of Native peoples.
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  • Why Are Girls Better Than Boys?

    Q: Why Are Girls Better Than Boys?

    A: According to a study carried out by professors Daniel and Susan Voyer at the University of New Brunswick, girls perform better than boys because of self-discipline and encouragement. A study by top scientists at the University of Pennsylvania, Martin Seligman and Angela Lee Duckworth, showed that girls have an aptitude for patience, setting goals and actively addressing frustration.
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  • What Do Hawaiian People Wear?

    Q: What Do Hawaiian People Wear?

    A: As Hawaii is a state affiliated with the United States, most people in Hawaii adhere to the basics of the American way of dressing. People in Hawaii normally wear what any other person would wear on a normal day, and they do not feel out of place.
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  • What Is an Example of a Personal Ethics Statement?

    Q: What Is an Example of a Personal Ethics Statement?

    A: A personal ethics statement can be constructed from a person's beliefs and expectations, and it differs from person to person. A personal ethics statement can be developed by listing a set of desired values, such as integrity, excellence and attitude, and attaching related behaviors to them.
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  • What Holidays Are Celebrated in France?

    Q: What Holidays Are Celebrated in France?

    A: France celebrates 11 national holidays: New Year's Day (January 1), Easter Monday (day varies), Labor Day (May 1), WWII Victory Day (May 8), Bastille Day (July 14), Ascension Thursday (day varies), Pentecost (day varies), Assumption of Mary (August 15), All Saints' Day (November 1), Armistice Day (November 11) and Christmas (December 25). In addition, France celebrates a number of nonpublic holidays, such as the Epiphany, Valentine's Day, the first of April, Mother's Day and Halloween.
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  • What Is the Importance of Fashion?

    Q: What Is the Importance of Fashion?

    A: Fashion is important because clothing and accessories can illustrate culture, indicate membership of a group or demonstrate values and beliefs. It is also a way to highlight favorable cosmetic attributes.
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  • What Do Brazilian People Eat?

    Q: What Do Brazilian People Eat?

    A: According to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics, the three most commonly consumed foods in Brazil are rice, beans and coffee. The national dish of Brazil is feijoada, a thick stew made with black beans and pork that is traditionally prepared in a clay pot.
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  • Why Do People Need Clothes?

    Q: Why Do People Need Clothes?

    A: Clothes are necessary for several reasons: they are required by law in many areas of the world, serve as a way to identify certain cultures and traditions, set societal norms and standards and provide protection from the elements, such as wind, cold, rain and strong sunlight. Clothing has been used by humans for thousands of years, and comes in a variety of forms. Clothing has evolved throughout the course of history to include more fabrics, styles and designs and helps to shape the identities of individuals and societies around the world.
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  • What Did the Cherokee Indians Live In?

    Q: What Did the Cherokee Indians Live In?

    A: The Cherokee Indians lived in log cabins reinforced with mud and wood. They settled in the southeast woodland region of America, although originally they were from the Great Lakes area.
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  • What Is the National Dress of China?

    Q: What Is the National Dress of China?

    A: The cheongsam is widely regarded as the national dress of China. The snug, one-piece garment is available as a dress for women. Its male counterpart, the changshan, is similar, resembling a long shirt.
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  • What Is the Dress Code for a Gala Dinner?

    Q: What Is the Dress Code for a Gala Dinner?

    A: Those attending a gala dinner may have to wear white tie, black tie, black tie optional, semi-formal or creative black tie attire. The dress code is generally listed on the invitation.
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  • What Games Did the Ancient Greeks Play?

    Q: What Games Did the Ancient Greeks Play?

    A: Games in ancient Greece usually consisted of activities derived from or inspired by warrior skills, including sprinting, wrestling, running, equestrian events like chariot races and horseback riding, and hand-to-hand combat events like boxing and the pankration. Youths swam, ran and played with hoops and balls, while older Greeks played team games similar to modern hockey and rugby. Greeks of all ages enjoyed dancing games, which usually accompanied their festivals.
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  • Why Are Countries Referred to As Feminine?

    Q: Why Are Countries Referred to As Feminine?

    A: The femininity of countries, or "motherlands," is partially a reference to the rich and nurturing soil of which they are composed, or "Mother Earth." There is also a linguistic basis for the phenomenon.
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  • What Are Some Common Arabic Sayings?

    Q: What Are Some Common Arabic Sayings?

    A: Some common Arabic phrases include "salam," which is used to mean "hi," and "laila sa'eda wa ahlaam ladida," which means "good night and sweet dreams." When greeting someone in Arabic, a person can also say "sabah el kheer" to mean "good morning" or "masaa el kheer" to mean "good evening."
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  • What Are Traditional Hindu Clothes?

    Q: What Are Traditional Hindu Clothes?

    A: Traditional Hindu clothing includes the dhoti and sari. The dhoti, consisting of a loose skirt or shorts that drape like a wrap, is worn by men with or without a long shirt. The sari is a 5- to 7-yard-long swath of fabric that is draped and tucked into the waistband of a woman's undergarments. Sometimes a shawl called a chunni is draped over a woman's head.
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  • How Is a Wish Made With a Wishbone?

    Q: How Is a Wish Made With a Wishbone?

    A: The Lucky Mojo website states that wishes are made with wishbones by two people each grasping a leg of the bone and then pulling it apart at the middle until it snaps, while making their wishes. The person with the longest piece of the bone after it snaps is supposed to have his wish come true. On those occasions when the broken lengths are even, both wishes are fulfilled.
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  • What Is the Name for Santa Claus in Ireland?

    Q: What Is the Name for Santa Claus in Ireland?

    A: Santa Claus is called "San Nioclás" or "Daidi na Nollag" in Ireland. The first name means "Saint Nicholas," and the latter translates literally as "Daddy Christmas" or "Father Christmas" in traditional Irish.
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  • How Does the Caste System Affect Indian Society?

    Q: How Does the Caste System Affect Indian Society?

    A: While it has been illegal in India to discriminate against others based on caste since the 1950s, the system continues to affect society in terms of economic inequality, genetic disease and even the election of politicians. Those who live in the country continue to grapple with the implications of caste despite a new, more egalitarian economy. Many compare the impacts of caste in India to those of race in America.
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  • Why Do We Wear Wedding Rings on Our Left Hand?

    Q: Why Do We Wear Wedding Rings on Our Left Hand?

    A: The custom of wearing wedding rings on the left hand originated in the third century B.C. in Greece. Physicians of that time incorrectly believed that a vein in the third finger of the left hand ran directly into the heart. Therefore, it made compelling sense that this body part should be chosen to bear a symbol of eternal love. The vein was known as "Vena Amoris," the "Vein of Love."
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  • What Are Some of the Obstacles to Achieving the American Dream?

    Q: What Are Some of the Obstacles to Achieving the American Dream?

    A: Lack of education and work opportunities, a depressed or recessionary economy, inadequate political direction and global factors are all seen by most Americans as significant obstacles to achieving the American Dream. Disadvantages are even more acute for recent immigrants although they apply to all demographics.
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