Chinese Material and Non-Material Culture essay example
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Chinese Material and Non-Material Culture

The history of China can be dated as early as 1250 BC; it is one of the oldest cultures worldwide. Today China is one of the most popular and powerful countries in the world. They’re advancement in technology puts them before of many countries. When observing cultures there is something called a material culture, and a non-material culture. Material culture is the physical objects, spaces, and resources that define a specific culture. For example, religious buildings such as a church. A non-material culture is a non physical idea that people have of their culture, such as beliefs, values, norms, and morals. Five examples of Chinese material culture the tobacco pipe, Chinese suits, traditional hairstyles, traditional wedding attire, and lamps.

The tobacco pipe was a big material in the Chinese culture because back in the day China put in place an anti-smoking movement, there was a national ban on tobacco and for the people who were addicted to tobacco having to be executed. The traditional Chinese suits were embroidered with dragons then and only the emperor was allowed to wear it, it was a sign of power, leadership, and wisdom. Traditional hairstyles were important in China because if the young woman wore her hair down it meant that they were unmarried in search for a husband. Traditional wedding attire is still current in China, women on their wedding days’ wear red, it is considered lucky, happy and auspicious in their culture. Lamps were most significant to the Chinese culture because a red lamp or “red deng” how the Chinese say was a statement of happiness. For those who moved far from home having a lamp or candle caused homesickness. Moving on to the Chinese non-material culture examples could be the respect for elders, respect for family members, Confucianism, loyalty, and faithfulness.

Respect for elders and family members in the Chinese community is a huge thing, youths must learn and be able to appreciate elders and family members who have more experience than them. Confucianism is an everyday life arena of religion, the three essential values of it was filial piety, humanness, and rituals. Having someone’s loyalty in their culture is like is giving someone your word for life. This varies from the Canadian culture, because with the new generations I find that loyalty does not mean as much to us as it would in the Chinese culture, nowadays we will run whomever just, so you can succeed, and this event is not right. We have lost the meaning of loyalty and faithfulness for our greedy needs and wants.

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In Conclusion, the Chinese culture is different from our Canadian culture but there are some similarities. The similarities we share with the Chinese culture would be a majority of the non-materialistic culture of the Chinese, such as, the respect for elders, respect for family members, loyalty, and faithfulness. These are similar because as children our parents raise us to respect elders and family members. So it is something we just know how to do and as individuals we eventually pass it on to our children. Also another two things we share in common with the Chinese culture is the sense of loyalty and faithfulness towards one another.

As Canadians we are thought of as very nice people, but along with that we are overall very loyal people. After studying the different types of cultures we have around the world, it is safe to say Canada is a diverse and accepting country. With all the races and cultures, we have in this country we are truly blessed to be around them. There is so much to learn from one another as the years go by and there will always be something new to learn about another person’s culture.

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