Writing a self-reflective tirade is perhaps one of the most difficult tasks to perform. The part of my life that I am going to make known to you, is a subject that I myself have been wondering about. I have found myself pondering this topic for an unusually long time; I decided to write about my culture– the one thing about myself which I understand the least. This question which is so easy for others to answer often leads me into a series of complicated explanations, “I was born in the U.S., to an American mother and an Arabic father. I am now nearly twenty-six, which means I have spent half of my life being Arabic, and the other half trying to be American, or is it the other way around?
I do not consider myself Arab-American. I am too “Americanized” to be Arabic, (although by birthright, I am American).
So what does all this have to do with my culture, what does a label really matter to cultural identity? It matters much. I believe that this seemingly trivial confusion over labels reveals the even greater confusion that surrounds my cultural identity: Am I a bridge between these two multifaceted cultures, or have I become a mosaic displaying colors from here and there, and elsewhere too? Perhaps both, and I could be a colorful bridge, or perhaps neither. Whatever the case, I cannot seem to separate these absolutely disparate realities within me. Their forces are still clashing, coming together within me, creating an extraordinary mystery out of me. I believe that to truly analyze my culture, the roots of this confusion must be explored. I must try to encompass the widths of two worlds, their unique interactions within me…which I hope constitute what is called culture.
Socialization American Born Chinese Children under Chinese Culture According to the American Heritage Dictionary, socialization is "the process of learning interpersonal and interaction al skills that are in conformity with the values of one's society" (American Heritage). It is a process of learning culture. During socialization, children will acquire attitudes, norms, values, behaviors, ...
I am an alien of sorts. I am an alien in my own country… but what is my own country? I am an alien wherever I go. In the Middle East, my lack of Arabic reveals my American leanings. In the U.S., my appearance has marked me as a “minority.” Being bi-cultural has placed me in a perplexing portal between two separate worlds, with their own unique ideology, thinking, traditions and way of life. It helps me understand the relationship that exists between such cultures; and allows me to examine the pros and cons of each.
My personality and identity has been molded from these two cultures. Being the odd one out has its own blessings, you know. I have derived from such experiences, the art of diplomacy, and a sense of understanding. As I have matured through life, I have learned a lot. However, there is one aspect which will always remain gray for me, my identity.