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Traditional and Nontraditional Culture
Psy 450

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Traditional and Nontraditional Culture
Cultures all across the globe are perceived in many different ways. Cultures may view other cultures
as being odd, while other people in different cultures view some of the aspects of different cultures as
being either traditional or nontraditional. In this paper we will focus on the aspects of how cultures are
either traditional or non traditional, what makes them so and the differences between two specific cultures
in their being either traditional or nontraditional. But what exactly is a traditional and nontraditional
Traditional VS Nontraditional
Traditional cultures are those that adhere to strict cultural boundaries and expectations throughout
time and history, they do not change or evolve. There is a high level of conformity in such cultures and
very little tolerance for there being anything different in many aspects. Nontraditional cultures are those
that do not adhere to historical views and perceptions of generations past; they evolve and change with
time and each generation. Within nontraditional cultures change is welcomed, diversity is welcomed and
the culture in and of its self breeds change in the aspects of its people, religions, environments and
societies (Carteret, 2008). Two good examples of traditional and nontraditional cultures are that of the
United States and India; the United States of America being the nontraditional culture and India being the
traditional culture. While the United States fosters change and strives to evolve in a forward motion, India
works to maintain the traditions and ways of their ancestry. This in no way constitutes that one culture is
better than the other; they both have their pros and cons. This can include many aspect of ones behavior
both spoken and unspoken, the very nature of what one believes to be socially acceptable can be very
different between traditional and nontraditional cultures (Carteret, 2008). The meaning of eye contact,
body language, head nodding, use of silence and gesturing can mean very different things in each culture
but no bigger difference has been seen that in the traditional versus nontraditional cultures
(Carteret, 2008).

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Nontraditional Culture of the United States of America
The United States of America is a non-traditional culture. From America’s birth the
country has developed in numerous ways. Bruce (2010) explains the country as, “…the world's
richest country and is known for its impact on culture and entertainment around the globe” (p. 1).
This is the land of opportunity. Immigrants moved to the United States with hopes and dreams of
making a better life. This has made the country a melting pot of all nations. With the Declaration
of Independence, the individuals in the country have a large amount of freedom compared to
most other countries around the world. Although amendments have been made to this document,
the core remains the same. Parents send their children to either public or private schooling until
they have almost reached the end of their teen years. Afterwards the children have the option to
continue schooling or to stop there. America contains numerous religious beliefs. The people are
free to worship and praise whoever they choose, and in their own way. This particular freedom is
a high placed value. The government tries to separate from religion when ever possible.
Technology has become part of every day life. Individual and businesses use cell phones,
laptops, and other equipment daily. Medicine and hospitals have developed and use specific
technology to diagnose and treat patients. The culture encourages competition in businesses. This
keeps the stress to work hard, and listen to what the people are wanting. Businesses work against
each other to create the superior product. Celebrities are individuals who have done well for
themselves. These people may be movie stars, or a musician. The government is a Democratic
system. The people vote to place individuals in their particular places.
The Traditional Culture of India
One of the numerous traditional cultures is in India. India is widely known as one of the
oldest cultures in the world. The culture of India highly values the traditions and beliefs

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