Each culture in the world has certain distinct features which make it different from other cultures. It can be reflected in customs, traditions, beliefs, values, and so on. Studying all these aspects is an essential step in understanding the culture. Otherwise, different views caused by cultural distinctions may lead to misunderstandings and even conflicts. Today, we live in a multi-cultural society, so an unprejudiced study and understanding of these differences is extremely important for us. In this paper, the main similarities and differences of Hispanic and African American cultures will be examined.
Despite the popular concept, being Hispanic does not mean being a representative of another race. Rather, it is being a part of a culture centered on the Spanish language. Thus, the majority of Hispanic people are able to speak Spanish fluently. In addition, the large part of this culture’s representatives refers itself to the Catholic faith, which is usually rather strong. It also includes beliefs in the power of icons representing Catholic personalities. The US also experiences the raising popularity of Hispanic dishes now. Tortillas, tacos, burritos and other kinds of food can be found almost anywhere now.
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Unlike the Hispanic culture, the African American one actually refers to another race, which was segregated for a long time in the past. They do not have a distinct language, but just a dialect of English. African Americans also have another religion, since the majority of them are Protestants, not Catholics. Also, their food is different from the Hispanic one, because it uses much simpler ingredients and is not so popular among other people.
On the other hand, the cultures also have similar points. First of all, the similarity is their hard history and the position in the society nowadays. The representatives of both cultures have strong faith and distinct sets of principles. Therefore, it is extremely important to create the atmosphere of mutual understanding and cooperation for them. The recent enrollment of Hispanics at historically black colleges and universities contributed a lot to that. As the specialists say, it will expose students to a different culture and provide opportunities for learning and mutual respect (Gasman, 2012). Such decision will bring many advantages because it will create mutual understanding and healthy co-existence of the two cultures.
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