Essay about Cultural Autobiography

2315 Words Nov 25th, 2008 10 Pages
Running Head: MY CULTURAL

My Cultural Autobiography
Nancy Domanski

Sir Frances Bacon said, “If a man be gracious to strangers, it shows that he is a citizen of the world, and his heart is no island cut off from other islands, but a continent that joins them,” (Jenkins, 1994). This quote represents all the core values that I cherish and to which I adhere. Personal culture doesn’t have to be linked to a certain country of origin or a specific ethnicity; it can be as simple as a person’s core values. The Southern way of life is a culture all in itself. Growing up south of the Mason-Dixon Line in the United States has instilled in me many values including honesty, integrity and a genuine concern for my fellow man. Most
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I think it is because of how different the food is and how many choices are available. I am proud that I have continued this tradition with my children for many reasons, but manly because it opens their minds to new people and cultures. I think this tradition that my mother started was pretty progressive for her time. She never seemed to be restrained by the typical female roles of most women of her time. She somehow managed to remain true to her southern traditions while blending them into a progressive way of thinking. I think I am the same, in that I am trying to teach my daughter respect for others, especially her elders, while making sure her own thoughts are valued as well. My brother, Mike, recently reminded me of another very strong southern value that I too feel passionate about when he said, “Don’t ask me for a handout, but I am always willing to give you a hand up.” By this is meant, southerners are always willing to help someone better themselves or their situation. If they are hungry, feed them and show them how to feed themselves. If they need a job, teach them the skills needed to find a job—not give them money. To us, throwing money at a situation is not helping. It is demeaning to the receiver and it will most likely encourage the problem. More simply put, if you give a man a fish, he will eat for a day. If you teach a man to fish, he will feed himself forever.

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