For this assignment I read the NY Times article “All Cultures Are Not Equal” by David Brooks, which had a lot of insight and I think is very accurate to today’s society and I believe that what he says to be true.
- I do agree with Brooks that not only are U.S. citizens diverging but also world wide we are diverging. What he said about the nations and the wold supposed to be coming together but really falling apart is true. Also on a smaller level this is true here in the U.S. and with our citizens. We as a culture have come a long ways and it seems like we are pushing for growth together but yet we are falling into distinct and isolated subcultures. One of probably the best examples of this is, as he mentioned, the politics of America and the differences between the Republicans and the Democrats. As he said they seem like they come from two different worlds, but in reality if you look at them closely they push for the same basic things yet are such distinct and strict subcultures. It almost seems so to the point where these two groups can’t even agree to disagree, or go okay you have your ideas and we have ares so lets just say that and go our separate ways. I think this can and has lead to more countercultures in the U.S. Countercultures are, a way of life and set of attitudes opposed to or at variance with the prevailing social norm. I think that what is has come down today in every way is the left (one opinion), the right (another opinion), and those who don’t fit into either of those, and to fit into either of those groups you have to wholeheartedly believe in it (all or nothing kind of sense). Our cultures especially, and everywhere in the world is falling apart in one way or another and most of it is due to what we thought would bring us together, but it actually has created subcultures and divided our nation.
- One idea that Brooks mentions that I would do further study in would be that “every place becomes more like itself.” To study this I would go from neighborhood to neighborhood (or send out anonymous surveys) ensuring that I went to many socially different neighborhoods so that my data comes from different cultures and is not skyward. I would ask things like; race, income, what they would describe their neighborhood like (all above are worded in correspondence to the assumed neighborhood majority), religion, political views, region/town/city in which they live, where (if) they formerly lived and why they moved, cultural background, views on different social movements (i.e. gay rights, abortion, black lives matter, etc.). I would also ask if the resident would in their views consider themselves as a part of a neighborhood with similar views to them. In most of these categories there would be multiple questions pertaining to the topic as to get a good notion of the peoples’ stances and their likeness in where they reside. They will be able to give a positive=1, negative=-1, or neutral=0 response where I would then factor the means of a numerical response. After factoring this I would have the numerical data to look at the similarities in numbers between the people of 1 neighborhood to compare them thus giving me the value of the neighborhood. From there I would compare the numerical add up of the neighborhoods against other neighborhoods. This would give me the end result of neighborhood differences in one culture versus other neighborhood beliefs of other areas and culture.