Cultural Rituals As Un-Stereotypes
To celebrate the new year, I thought I would celebrate the un-stereotype once again. The un-streotype is a message about a group that is counter to the stereotype for that group. See my recent post introducing the concept.
Every culture tends to view themselves as unique and special and other cultures as strange and simplistic. My blog this week titled Mapping Stereotypes is an example of how this works because it shows the simplistic stereotypes that cultural groups have of other cultural groups.
Despite that stereotypes make “other” cultures seem one-dimensional, each culture is unique and special. This uniqueness is expressed in the rituals from a culture which demonstrates that culture’s thoughtfulness, ties to traditions, respect for their own culture, and so forth. All things that any culture has despite stereotypes that would suggest otherwise.
Each cultural ritual can be viewed as an un-stereotype. There is one caveat. It is an un-stereotype if you actually understand the ritual, not just know it exists.
In order to promote the idea that rituals, when understood in depth, are un-stereotypes, I invite you to read art therapist and blogger Natasha Shapiro’s recent series on cultural rituals which she introduces here.
Most recently, Natasha discussed Dream Catchers as a Native American ritual.
When we see that other cultures are as unique and special as our own, then we can discredit and move beyond stereotypes.