Wednesday, May 7, 2008

11. Hate Speech

From my own personal experience people of the same ethnic complexion and religious views as Greg would be called "Towelhead" and "Sand Nigger".

In speaking with an Urdu speaker and Baha'is practioner I found that "towelhead" is appropriate. He explained that Sikhs in his opinion are a blending of Arabs and Hindi's. He said the blend is odd because historically the two groups have been at odds. He said that the neighborhood determines the acceptance and tolerance of the mingling. Arabs and Sikhs in a Sikh neighborhood is completely acceptable and the same is true in an Arab neighborhood. A Hindi and a Sikh in a Sikh neighborhood is accepted but a the same couple in a Hindi area is viewed as more cautious. The men may joke and tell others to "lock up their wives".

Free speech in India is comparable to the US and other Western States. Greg could not recount any specific cases of hate speech in Indian culture.

Monday, May 5, 2008

10. Gender

Punjabi has two gender forms, masculine and feminine.
English has no distinct gender forms. Some English words come from gender based features or ideas.

9. Argument

Greg's view of argument comes from his parents. His father was the head of the family and was to be respected. His mother had a similar set of authority but a different role. India has markets and a history of haggling which would lead me to believe it to be an "argument" culture.

In the US, arguments frequently occur anywhere and everywhere. It is understood that you respect those older than you and those that have authority although it is not a rigid rule. Everyone is allowed to speak publicly although not everyone will be listened to. Public speakers have status and that determines their audience. Verbal arguments are the norm and any physical violence is not tolerated even though it maybe encouraged by spectators. Argument here is used to get ones way, it is usually used as a last resort.