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Surprisingly, however, this system, nearest to human language in function, belongs to a species remote from humanity in the animal kingdom. On the other hand, the animal performance superficially most like human speech, the mimicry of parrots and of some other birds that have been kept in the company of humans, is wholly derivative and serves no independent communicative function.
Extended Definitions in Essays and Speeches
Attempts to teach sign language to chimpanzees and other apes through imitation have achieved limited success, though the interpretation of the significance of ape signing ability remains controversial. In most accounts, the primary purpose of language is to facilitate communication, in the sense of transmission of information from one person to another. However, sociolinguistic and psycholinguistic studies have drawn attention to a range of other functions for language. Among these is the use of language to express a national or local identity a common source of conflict in situations of multiethnicity around the world, such as in Belgium, India , and Quebec.
Language interacts with every aspect of human life in society, and it can be understood only if it is considered in relation to society. This article attempts to survey language in this light and to consider its various functions and the purposes it can and has been made to serve.
Cultural Identity Essay: Make Others Feel the Beauty of Your Native Land
Because each language is both a working system of communication in the period and in the community wherein it is used and also the product of its history and the source of its future development, any account of language must consider it from both these points of view. The science of language is known as linguistics. It includes what are generally distinguished as descriptive linguistics and historical linguistics.
Linguistics is now a highly technical subject; it embraces, both descriptively and historically, such major divisions as phonetics , grammar including syntax and morphology , semantics , and pragmatics , dealing in detail with these various aspects of language. You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience and security. Article Media. She queries whether translation can be a new form of imperialism in the age of English since translation from minority languages into English is slight.
She raises a highly relevant problem, much discussed in the media, as to the impact of social media on minority language cultures and asks whether this could lead to what V. For Lithuanians previously under the domination of Russia this new trend arouses anxiety as to the future of their language — will it fossilize or will translated texts open new doors and initiatives in the native language? The first trans is aesthetic, the second the transition from post-colonialism to transculturalism, and the third is translation — all relevant in the construction of identities. This is examined in relation to racism and the black struggle, and to black music which Arthur the protagonist uses as a tool of resistance both to racism, and as an expression of sexual orientation by queering the gospel and Christianity.
Matthias Stephan discusses transculturation in science fiction. In Lessing the realms function as distinct cultures within a multicultural society, tolerant and accepting of each other, but remaining the same as before, but with added understanding. The transcultural encounter in Battlestar Galactica, on the other hand, postmodern and posthuman, results in elimination of both cultures.
In all three texts the presentation and expression of identities is crucial to an understanding of the dynamics of encounters. South Africa is heir to a legacy of autochthonous livelihoods see, most famously, the Khoi and the San as well as Bantu immigration; slavery ; colonisation; settler economies ; and liberation movements. These histories have all had a drastic effect on the make up of South Africa's population.
Yet somehow through the interchange of cultures and sharing of cultural influences in the age of globalisation, there defiantly remains a tapestry of phenomena which can identifiably and unabmiguously to termed 'South Africa. Like 'heritage' and 'identity,' 'culture' is a term that causes much confusion and suffers from its misuse. Traditionally it has been used to refer to the ways of life of a specific group of people, including various ways of behaving, belief systems, values, customs, dress, personal decoration, social relationships, religion, symbols and codes.
The pitfalls of the term are however, considerable.
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For instance, it is not unusal for European visitors to South Africa or Africa at large, to innocently enquire into the nature of "African Culture. Even to ask about 'Zulu culture' is potentially wide of the mark, given how varied and dynamic the Zulu population is. While it is a stretch of the imagination to state that culture simply does not exist, as has been claimed by certain postmodern intellectuals, it remains difficult to reach a consensus about what the term really denotes.
Is there such a thing as 'White culture' or 'Coloured culture,' for instance?
Language Identity Essay
Throughout history, various people and institutions have attempted to define what is meant by culture. In , one of the fathers of British social anthropology, Edward Burnett Tylor attempted to describe it in the following way: "Culture or civilization, taken in its wide ethnographic sense, is that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society. In South Africa, the question of definition according to race and culture carries an especially sharp edge to it, which potentially makes it a more contentious issue here than elsewhere.
This is primarily due to the policies of the Apartheid government that sought to distinguish and segregate the country according to rigid definitions of race between These policies reached their apotheosis in the establishment of the 'Bantustans,' which were created as homelands for the major different ethnic groups represented within South Africa's borders.
For this reason, subsequent attempts to define the people of South Africa may easily carry an unpleasant connotation of racist categorisation from the past. With this proviso, South Africa has a hugely diverse population, representative of a vast spectrum of different languages, practices, and values. South Africa has been famously referred to as the rainbow nation because it is made up of so many diverse cultures and religions. This is part of the healing that democracy has brought after culture was used to divide South Africans in the past.
Identity, like culture, is ever changing. For example a person can be a teacher, parent, spouse and driver to their children, as well as being a famous politician fighting for justice or a farmer growing crops for food. To this person it is possible to be all of these and much more. At the same time being a person of a particular race or class also influences one's identity. When people speak of 'intersectionality,' they are broadly referring to this way that a single person can be at the intersection of multiple different social identities.