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Old 09-01-2009, 11:55 PM
 
Location: Hernando County, FL
8,489 posts, read 11,384,772 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachael84 View Post
Well, being open-minded to other cultures, interacting with them, traveling to different countries, that will make you cultured. The word culture is in "cultured" obviously, and cultures therefore mean different nationalities and countries. I think that makes someone more cultured than carrying on a conversation. I'd say I'm pretty cultured after living in the most diverse county in the country.
Experiencing different countries does not automatically make you cultured.

By the time my daughter was 10 she had already traveled to a few different countries and many states. She ate the foods, experienced the local customs. She was not cultured at the snap of a finger because of this.

Being able to hold a conversation on many varied subjects shows more culture than going to Belize and eating a dukunu in my opinion.
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Old 09-01-2009, 11:55 PM
 
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
13,856 posts, read 14,036,003 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tpk-nyc View Post
Part of the problem is that you're using an unusual, or at least expanded, definition of the word. Most New Yorkers use the term with regard to education, especially in the arts and humanities.

The original definition of "cultured" (I looked it up in the OED) was about the selective breeding of plants or things purposefully grown, like cultured pearls. Its closest synonym is "cultivated." People, like plants, can be cultivated or cultured. It has nothing to do with "culture" in the sociological sense.

(For a working definition see: Cultured Definition | Definition of Cultured at Dictionary.com)

The word certainly has elitist implications, and some people find it obnoxious (or offensive), but the meaning is established. To equate being "cultured" with cultural sensitivity or multiculturalism is to strain language.

Your point that some New Yorkers can be chauvinistic, or even solipsistic, is fair, but it has nothing to do with being cultured.
I agree with much of this, but are New Yorkers really the most cultured even in the classic sense?

Manhattan does seem to be high in people with Master's Degrees or doctorates, but I'm not sure if the other boroughs are.

http://www.city-data.com/top2/h182.html

San Diego seems to have a good deal of museums. Charleston has a reputation for manners and also has many museums. Boston College has a "great books" program and Boston is known for its symphony. Philadelphia has a good deal in the classical music world. Baltimore has the Peabody. Even with smaller cities Santa Fe, New Mexico seems to have a good deal of highly educated people and one of their colleges does a "Great Books" program.
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Old 09-02-2009, 12:13 AM
 
Location: Concrete jungle where dreams are made of.
8,904 posts, read 6,796,433 times
Reputation: 1819
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Peterson View Post
Experiencing different countries does not automatically make you cultured.

By the time my daughter was 10 she had already traveled to a few different countries and many states. She ate the foods, experienced the local customs. She was not cultured at the snap of a finger because of this.

Being able to hold a conversation on many varied subjects shows more culture than going to Belize and eating a dukunu in my opinion.

Well, that person would be able to carry on a long conversation about that country, its customs, etc. A lot more so than most people can. That's an example of being cultured.

My 3 best friends growing up were from Germany, El Salvador, and Puerto Rico. I learned about where they came from, their cultures, learned their languages, customs, ate the food sometimes. Having friends as a kid from other countries will definitely help you become more cultured.

I also think it makes someone a little cultured if they've been to really poor/bad neighborhoods, but have also been to some wealthy areas. Just basically seeing different types of living circumstances.
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Old 09-02-2009, 12:21 AM
 
Location: OKLAHOMA CITY
559 posts, read 1,309,962 times
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watching films with no words that say "fin" when finished.
eating odd cheeses while sipping wine.
wearing an ascot cap and tweed pants.
quoting maya angelou.
all while in the presence of a jew.
yeah......cultured.
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Old 09-02-2009, 04:07 AM
 
Location: CLEVELAND OHIO
434 posts, read 549,208 times
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Being stuck on an Air Craft Carrier for six months at a time with all different types of people you can think of. My Senior Chief was from Trinidad. The Navy is one big happy rainbow.
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Old 09-02-2009, 07:56 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
23,013 posts, read 17,993,886 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WeSoHood View Post
It seems like (on here atleast) that a vast majority of East Coaster (particularly NYC and surrounding areas) think they are more cultured because they live in NYC.

But from viewing most of their posts, it seems like it's the opposite. It seems like most have not actually traveled the US or the world for that matter.

I'm not sure if I'm the only one who gets that perception. But to be truly cultured, you have to actually know about the cities people talk about. Far too common on here people tend to speak about cities they've never been to.. I try and ONLY talk about areas I've traveled. I just notice that if there is any city or location near NYC (NJ, LI, Conn., Philly, etc) that New Yorkers will almost definitely pick that area or strictly speak about it.. it's just a shame that NYC is such a great place, but the people don't really know about outside of the immediate area.
If I went to NYC could I, for example, get country cooking in a downtown restaurant, hear bluegrass music on the radio, visit some farms and go to the theater to see some buck dancing? Could I see how quilting is done, butter is made or visit an Indian reservation? So, quit patting yourselves (not you, the poster --- generally speaking) on the back about how diverse your culture is in NYC and other urban locations. Your culture is DIFFERENT. It's not better or as diverse as you think it is. You are just so cocooned in urban culture with a like-minded media that reinforces how special you (and they) are that you believe it.
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Old 09-02-2009, 08:21 AM
 
Location: Kentucky
6,753 posts, read 14,905,774 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LauraC View Post
If I went to NYC could I, for example, get country cooking in a downtown restaurant, hear bluegrass music on the radio, visit some farms and go to the theater to see some buck dancing? Could I see how quilting is done, butter is made or visit an Indian reservation? So, quit patting yourselves (not you, the poster --- generally speaking) on the back about how diverse your culture is in NYC and other urban locations. Your culture is DIFFERENT. It's not better or as diverse as you think it is. You are just so cocooned in urban culture with a like-minded media that reinforces how special you (and they) are that you believe it.
Wonderful post!
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Old 09-02-2009, 10:22 AM
 
Location: Houston, TX
1,308 posts, read 2,184,997 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tpk-nyc View Post
Your point that some New Yorkers can be chauvinistic, or even solipsistic, is fair, but it has nothing to do with being cultured.
I think, at least from what it appears in the context generally on display in the City-vs-City forums, culture is used more in the anthropological sense (defineable patterns of behavior characteristic of individual breeding groups). And, when these braggarts wax on about how much culture New York City has, they aren't specifically saying they're cultured in the intellectually curious sense. They're merely saying something to the effect of, "We gotz lotsa peepul from all overs the places that look and act differnt from mee."

In other words, some posters from New York City think its "culture" is unsurpassed because of the readily availabile durian fruit ice cream.
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Old 09-02-2009, 10:40 AM
 
Location: roaming gnome
12,395 posts, read 14,906,259 times
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Hrrmmm I'm not sure high culture cuts it either. I mean that is pretty pompous to think we are even that great in our feats, because every generation behind us tends to become more accomplished and highly subjective. Is a person more cultured who majors in math and has a great understanding of logic, or a person who majors in the classics and knows greek and latin philosophy and art? Humanities is certainly one of the least employable fields these days...
Out here in Sonoma County, perhaps one would have you believe that a strong knowledge of world wines, select grapes and vintages might make you cultured. But I know friends across the pond who would highly disagree and believe their knowledge of single malts trumps that.
If you want to play that card, I think you should call it subjective sophistication and not cultured.
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Old 09-02-2009, 10:51 AM
 
Location: DC Metro/NoVA
1,713 posts, read 3,724,641 times
Reputation: 743
Quote:
Originally Posted by WeSoHood View Post
It seems like (on here atleast) that a vast majority of East Coaster (particularly NYC and surrounding areas) think they are more cultured because they live in NYC.

But from viewing most of their posts, it seems like it's the opposite. It seems like most have not actually traveled the US or the world for that matter.

I'm not sure if I'm the only one who gets that perception. But to be truly cultured, you have to actually know about the cities people talk about. Far too common on here people tend to speak about cities they've never been to.. I try and ONLY talk about areas I've traveled. I just notice that if there is any city or location near NYC (NJ, LI, Conn., Philly, etc) that New Yorkers will almost definitely pick that area or strictly speak about it.. it's just a shame that NYC is such a great place, but the people don't really know about outside of the immediate area.
I've lived in 6 States, West Coast, East Coast, Great Plains, Small towns (smallest was 16,000 pop) and big cities (Chicago). I find most people I speak to have a myopic view of their world. They have never stepped off their day to day life and seen how other people live. Believe me, Philly people are way different from San Diegans and those from Wichita. They act different and have a different world view than the other. I'm older and have no patience any more for those who have that-I've lived only on my block-viewpoint. They all may have heard Mozart, but their neighborhood makes them listen to it differently. And I can hear that 'neighborhood' in their opinion.
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