Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Exotic But Normal

Have you ever thought about what we might consider ethnic or tribal really isn't exotic at all? I have. In fact I have been pondering this idea for awhile now, why is it that we label one thing as ethnic/tribal and another as classic or normal? As I see it the term ethnic and tribal are thrown around when applied to styles of dress, eating, or a culture when it does not originate from the west. Whereas classic is used to describe the European and American fashion, way of eating, and culture. However, what people fail to realize is what one person might consider ethnic is considered classic or normal for someone else. The culture and style of dress of the Masai people in Africa is considered tribal/ethnic by many in the west. The Masai's are semi-nomadic ethnic group which still practice many of the rituals of their ancestors and tend to shun many attempts by outsiders to get them to assimilate into society. Perhaps the Masai tribe see the way people in the United States live, with our huge consumerism culture and fast food restaurants galore, as ethnic. So really, who has the right to label one thing as exotic and another thing as classic and normal? Aren't all things "normal" if you look at it from a different perspective? Once these labels are striped away it is possible to appreciate everything and everyone for what they truly are, no labels needed. When it comes down to it we are all the same. We all laugh, we all cry, we all go though trying times, we all experience utter bliss. We are all human.

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