June 24, 2004

Something to disagree with

I wrote this in a email earlier today and thought it as good a rendition of my thinking on this point so far:

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I've been pondering how cultures sit together, and what the role of a dominant culture is, and the role of an immigrant culture. Being in England (and particularly England not the other nations in the UK) makes me aware of how people want to retain the culture they were born with, and I think no-one would seek to deny that right. Yet cultures which try to dominate other cultures are frowned upon, people who ignore other cultures are labelled facists, and dominant cultures are regarded as little more than a weed. I've come to a sort of consensus among my opinions that cultures must be measured on their willingness to contribute to the future culture of the group (whether the group is geographically located or centred around something else like business or cricket). Obviously, the English have a big space in which they can decide what they would like to contribute to cricket in the future. But that is a substantively different position than asserting their right to have cricket follow their culture - whether their culture is contributing or not.

To have this opinion you have to take the point of view that culture is an inherantly temporal thing, and you must accept that it will change. Rather like language I suppose. Once you accept that point, the game becomes about engaging in where that culture is going. If you aren't moving and contributing you'll find your culture irrelevant. Though as I write this I notice that I am changing the focus to the future in typically western style. hah! oh well.

And yet, there is an inherant process by which the new generations take in the traditions and heritage that they choose to carry. Rather like some kind of evolution, some things survive and others don't. So my position is clearly about engaging with how the culture is developing and how the various cultures of New Zealand are combining into something rich and sustaining.

Posted by carla at June 24, 2004 06:09 AM
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