Class X + New Reading (Kwame Appiah’s Cosmopolitanism) + Introductions

class x 3 182013

Again, for Wednesday, bring your peer-review partner’s essay introduction back to glass with a  grade-range given, and comments and proof-readings.

As well, read and bring the following reading to class:  Kwame Appiah – Cosmopolitanism

Please be on time and please be prepared. If you have any questions, e-mail me tomorrow before 5pm.

20 thoughts on “Class X + New Reading (Kwame Appiah’s Cosmopolitanism) + Introductions

  1. Albanian culture, the power that it has over me would have to be strictness because albanian parents always want something a certain way, as well as their expectations of you relates to strictness, due to the fact that albania is a very poor country they think that you should be successful because you live in america. Most albanian people back home don’t know that just because you live in a wealthier country it does not mean it’s easier.

  2. The power that my Chinese culture has over me is expectation. My parents constantly want to design my life, and they try very hard to make sure I do as they say. My parents have a traditional mindset and believes that I can only succeed if I follow the routine they set up for me. As a child who does not want to be deemed as a “failure” by her own parents, I try very hard to do well in school, work, and household duties.

  3. Russian culture has power over its bearers through the works of literature. Not that we resort to those literary sources for guidance throughout life or they somehow prevent us from doing what we want to. Read in school, right at the time when personality is formed, our undoubtedly rich and diverse literature (especially classical one) makes us acquire certain values, thus determining to some extent what sort of people we become.

  4. I was born in Guatemala and I moved to New York when I was seven years old. One of the things that has power over me from my Guatemalan culture is the respect that one is expected to give to the elders. When I was growing up in Guatemala, all the children were expected to greet their uncle, aunts, grandparents, parents and even strangers with reverence. When I moved to New York, I noticed that my cousins had a lack of respect for their elders and although the New York culture has become a part of me as well, that respect towards my family and elders is still there. This respect has become a part of me and is something that I try to practice with everyone I encounter. Another thing that is part of my culture and has power over me is the family bond. As a popular saying says, one chooses one’s friends but one cannot choose one’s family. The bond I have with my family is something that I will always maintain because my family helps me stay balanced and will always help me even when I fail.

  5. My culture is American. I believe that media, regarding its advertisements has power over me. Advertisements in America are almost impossible to miss, you see them everywhere whether or not you go outside or stay at home. Advertisements are displayed on television, phones, computers and even on buses and trains. I believe that in America advertising portrays the notion that people need to constantly “upgrade” their electronics. Such advertisements give off the idea that if you do not upgrade you will be unhappy. Sometimes I feel that upgrading my old electronics will may be happier. I believe that this feeling stems from the core motives of advertising in America. Advertisements often convince people to upgrade even though the products that they currently have are perfectly functional. In some scenarios, advertisements have affected my decisions. One example displaying this is the fact that I recently upgraded to a smart phone from a regular phone. My old phone was functional in the sense that it could make calls and send texts, but I could not open my email or anything too complicated on it. Though in other cases, I can proudly say that I have not upgraded. An example of not upgrading is the fact that I have the second generation iPod Nano for about eight years. I believe that it does everything it was made to do, which is play music. I hope that it will continue to work as it has been all these years.


  6. I have been partially influenced by hip-hop culture throughout my years in high school. Because of the amount of music I listen to, I may occasionally resort to using slang to express myself in informal conversations. This habit has been formed due to the jargon and wording present in much of the music of the culture.
    In addition to the music, I also used to dress like the icons of the hip-hop music industry. This was a phase that I eventually overcame quite easily. I am glad for the fact that this somehow led me to have a newfound appreciation or passion for basketball. Though I’m not clear on what exactly coincides between hip-hop culture and the sport of basketball, there surely must be some components prevalent in both.

  7. One thing that my culture of Colombia has power over me is violence. The acts of violence along with the economic turmoil that occur in my neighborhood keep me from going back. I have not been back to Colombia in 7 years and am afraid that if I go back I would seem as “American” and get targeted for an attack. The picture of an “American” in Colombia may lead to the interpretation of wealth and success because many seek to go to America for the “American dream”. Fear of this violence keeps me from going back to my country.

  8. One thing in American culture (meaning an overarching coalescence of norms, traditions, and values) that has a lot of power over me is the idea of a social norm, or the “ideal personality”. It’s constantly shoved down my throat that the ideal personality is one that constantly talks, is commanding, and is super outgoing; I am the complete opposite of these things and this has power over me in a negative way. It’s at the point where it’s questionable to myself if it’s “okay” to be the way that I am, but surely no one would deny my right to be myself since that doesn’t hurt anyone. Also, no one is expected to communicate with me on my terms; rather, I am forced to communicate on theirs, which is generally extremely exhausting. This thing is tied to the American culture because it is ingrained as the kind of person who is “successful” along the lines of Carnegie and Rockefeller, which is the popular image of a successful person to this day. It is, according to the culture, “not acceptable” to be who I am.

  9. Culturally, I would define myself as Bengali-American. One thing that my culture has power over me is family. My family is very large, and spans a wide distance from Bangladesh to America, to many countries in between. Even as big as it is, we somehow always make some type of effort to connect and keep up to date with familial matters, including huge decisions, such as remarrying in the family. It becomes a joint-effort to come to a decision. This is an excellent way to make sure communications between all of us is always strong, bringing us closer even when we’re miles apart from each other. Family always comes first between all of us, and is an important facet of being part of the Bengali culture that isn’t in Bangladesh.

  10. The power that chinese culture has over me is food. Most chinese families require you to know most foods within the culture. Things like roast pork, soup dumplings, fried rice, etc. are some of the basic dishes to know. Why is it required? Food is one of the traditions that make the chinese culture unique. If it wasn’t passed down from generation to generation, the chinese culture would be lost.

  11. The Chinese culture is vast but it does not completely define every person it composes of. This is because the culture can be divided into the languages and dialects that each person speaks. This creates a more specific culture that is derived from the Chinese culture. For me, it is the Toisonese culture. In the region of Toi Son, the inhabitants compose of mostly farmers. The rural ancestry creates a “pressure to succeed” for its future generations. In my family’s neighborhood, to simply immigrate to the United States meant success. But the definition of success can change throughout each generation. For my parents, it was to provide a better future for their children. For me, success would be the ability to provide a better quality of life for my parents.

  12. Just being American alone has power of myself as an individual.There are extremely high expectation levels for American students, from the beginning of my education the idea of the American Dream was thrown at us time after time. This expectation level is something that is an influence with my education. Being Greek, the lack of a successful economy has been portrayed as a burden to the world. The current financial situation constantly gets linked back to Greece. The problems at Greece has influenced my family’s decision to not visit, due to the riots in Athens

  13. The power that my Ashkenazic Jewish American culture has over me is the community. The purpose of the community is to facilitate inter-family assistance and to provide a place of comfort in the diverse New York City. However, the community holds a certain number of standards and expectations. For example, if I were to marry a non-Jewish woman, I would be ex-communicated. Another example of this would be if I were to openly lead an nonreligious lifestyle. I would be shunned to the point of excommunication.

  14. Jewish culture has had great influence and power over me throughout my life. Throughout my years in school I have attended Jewish school and that has engraved the Jewish expectations in my mind. It has raised expectations of me to be a religious Jew and to participate in all the celebrations my religion has. Being in an American culture makes it difficult to keep everything that is excepted from me but i do put the effort in.

  15. One thing that has power over me in my culture is the importance of manners, regardless of age. For example, I have become accustomed to saying “Yes sir, no sir, yes ma’am, no ma’am” to people from any age group. The only exclusion to this would be very close friends, and even then a few yes sirs and no ma’am’s happen to slip. This has control over me because many Hispanics can immediately tell that I am Colombian because of this habit. It also has control over my work ethic because it allows me to address Hispanic customers in a professional manner with ease. This cultural habit also leads to a few laughs among friends who are not accustomed to being addressed as ma’am or sir. It also unfortunately makes some people who I talk to think that I think they are old. For example, they will tell me “Im not that old, you don’t have to call me ma’am.”

  16. “Culture in American anthropology meant the evolved human capacity to classify and represent experiences” (Wikipedia) and in the Chinese culture, the language, a form of communication learned through cultural experience and environment is an important knowledge that ties me to my culture positively. Language reluctantly learned through the process of growing up in a specific household, it is not something an individual can “choose to learn” rather an inevitable knowledge someone receives from the environment they grow up.

  17. One thing that the Chinese culture has over is me is tradition. Every year, we have different customs than other people. For starters, we always go by the lunar calendar, but it’s so confusing, I don’t even know when Chinese New Year is. Speaking of Chinese New Year, nobody else celebrates it. We get these red envelopes for good luck, but all that everybody is really looking forward to is the money inside.

  18. There is no more accurate way to describe the time we live in than “The Age of Information.” The sole reason why we are capable of such exponential growth is because of our newfound ability to store massive caches of data, and transfer these from one party to the next. Without these capabilities, society would render inefficient. The primary means of such regards how technology helps bridge the gap between individuals. Distance and time are no longer an issue, as communication is fully instantaneous. Furthermore, direct face-to-face contact is not necessary, making it easier for parties to present more radical, progressive ideas. While some argue that this diminishes social skills, it certainly yields benefits that outweigh this. Lastly, multitasking has become second nature as a result of technology, namely iPhones. Why has the iPhone become such a popular tool? The reason why the world loves the iPhone and needs it, “What makes an iPhone unlike anything else? Maybe it’s that it lets you do so many things. Or that it lets you do so many things so easily. Those are two reasons iPhone owners say they love their iPhone. But there are many others as well” quoted by Apple ( The functions on the phone become endless. These vices, which continue to evolve to make us even more efficient day by day, have become a symbol of communication in the modern day, to the point where they are almost fully responsible for the most significant of human relations by creating memories and conversation needed to tie that bond.

  19. The power that the Albanian culture has over me along with most other Albanians is expectancy. Albanian parents tend to have really high expectations of their children, they enforce rules and expect their children to attain college degrees. What ties expectation to this culture is that my parents grew up in a third world country where children mainly gained education until the 8th grade. So, for their children to have free a free education is something they wish they could have attained, expectancy derives from the thought that if you are given a free education, you should take advantage of it to be able to make more money than they were able to as well as having a better life than they did.

  20. Thanks for taking this chance to talk about this, I feel strongly about it and I take pleasure in understanding about this topic. If feasible, as you gain data, please add to this blog with new information and facts. I have found it particularly helpful.

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