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Western culture (sometimes equated with Western civilization or

European civilization) refers to cultures of European origin.


Western culture began with the Greeks, was enlarged and
strengthened by the Romans, reformed and modernized by the
fifteenth-century Renaissance and Reformation, and globalized by
successive European empires that spread the European ways of life
and education between the sixteenth and twentieth centuries.
European Culture developed with a complex range of philosophy,
medieval scholasticism and mysticism, Christian and secular
humanism. Rational thinking developed through a long age of change
European culture
and formation with the experiments of enlightenment, naturalism,
romanticism, science, democracy, and socialism. With its global
connection, European culture grew with an all-inclusive urge to adopt,
adapt, and ultimately influence other trends of culture.
The term "Western culture" is used very broadly to refer to a heritage
of social norms, ethical values, traditional customs, religious beliefs,
political systems, and specific artifacts and technologies. Specifically,
Western culture may imply:

The concept of western culture is generally linked to the classical


definition of the Western world. In this definition, Western culture is the
set of literary, scientific, political, artistic and philosophical principles
which set it apart from other civilizations. Much of this set of traditions
and knowledge is collected in the Western canon.
Finland culture
• The Finnish-speaking part of the population are called Finns,
possibly including a subculture of Swedish-speaking Finns. Finns
are somewhat genetically distinct from other Europeans. The major
Y-haplogroup in Finland is haplogroup N. Y-haplogroup I is another
haplogroup prevalent in Finland. The Finnish language is not an
Indo-European language, and belongs to Finno-Ugric family of
languages. Finns are traditionally divided to subgroups (heimo)
according to dialect, but these groupings have only a minor
importance due to 20th century urbanization and internal migration.
• The Finnish society encourages equality and liberalism with a
popular commitment to the ideals of the welfare state; discouraging
disparity of wealth and division into social classes. Everyman's right
(Ministry of Environment, 1999) is a philosophy carried over from
ancient times. All citizens have access to public and private lands for
agrarian activities or leisure. Finns value being close to nature, the
agricultural roots are embedded in the rural lifestyle. Finns are also
nationalistic, as opposed to self-identification with ethnicity or clan.
Family structure
• Family structure
• The Finnish family life is usually understood to be centered on the nuclear
family, rather than the extended family. There are usually one or two
children in a family. Traditionally, men were the wage-earners and women
remained in the home and care for children. However, since the Second
World War, gender roles have changed. Today, both men and women are
dual wage-earners. The welfare system allows for generous parental leave
with income-based benefits (Leitner, A. & Wroblewski, A., 2006). Finnish
parents have the option to take partial or total leave they are entitled to. A
majority of mothers opt to take longer leave, up to one year. Finland's
divorce rate is 51% of marriages being dissolved (Statistics Finland,
updated 5/07). Cohabitation is also common.
• Youth seek independence and typically move from their parents' residence
around the age of twenty and relocate to youth hostels or apartments.
Females tend to leave the family home earlier in pursuit of education. Males
remain in the home longer due to obligations to the military. Members of the
extended family typically live apart
• Dance music
• Notable Finnish dance and electronic
music artists include Jori Hulkkonen,
Darude, JS16, DJ Proteus, Fanu, DJ
Muffler, and DJ Orkidea.
music
• Folk music
• Much of the music of Finland is influenced by
traditional Karelian melodies and lyrics, as
comprised in the Kalevala. Karelian culture is
perceived as the purest expression of the Finnic
myths and beliefs, less influenced by Germanic
influence, in contrast to Finland's position
between the East and the West. Finnish folk
music has undergone a roots revival in recent
decades, and has become a part of popular
music.
• Popular music
• Modern Finnish popular music includes a renowned heavy metal music
scene, in common with other Nordic countries, as well as a number of
prominent rock bands, jazz musicians, hip hop performers, pop music and
dance music acts such as Bomfunk MCs, Darude and Waldo's People. The
producer JR Rotem, who has a Finnish and Israeli descent, is common in a
lot of Finnish hit songs and in America. Music from Russia such as t.a.T.u
and Tokio Hotel is common in that country as well. Finnish electronic music
such as the Sähkö Recordings record label enjoys underground acclaim.
Iskelmä (coined directly from the German word Schlager, meaning hit) is a
traditional Finnish word for a light popular song. Finnish popular music also
includes various kinds of dance music; tango, a style of Argentine music, is
also popular. One of the most productive composers of popular music was
Toivo Kärki, and the most famous singer Olavi Virta (1915–1972). Among
the lyricists, Sauvo Puhtila (born 1928), Reino Helismaa (died 1965) and
Veikko "Vexi" Salmi are a few of the most notable writers. The composer
and bandleader Jimi Tenor is well known for his brand of retro-funk music.
• Rock and heavy metal music


• Apocalyptica's Perttu Kivilaakso playing metal music live.
• The Finnish rock music scene emerged in the 1960, pioneered by
artists such as Blues Section and Kirka. In the 1970s Finnish rock
musicians started to write their own music instead of translating
international hits into Finnish. During the decade some progressive
rock groups, such as Tasavallan Presidentti and Wigwam, gained
respect abroad but failed to make a commercial breakthrough
outside Finland. This was also the fate of the rock and roll group,
Hurriganes. The Finnish punk scene produced some internationally
respected names including Terveet Kädet in 1980s. Hanoi Rocks
was a pioneering 1980s glam rock act that left perhaps a deeper
mark in the history of popular music than any other Finnish group by
being an influence for groups such as Guns 'n' Roses.
SPANISH CULTURE
• Spanish Characters
• Spanish characters are easy to find and identify
with. With such an abundance of brilliant writers,
Spain has become home to numerous
personalities who have been created to excite
and entertain audiences all around the world.
Characters such as Don Juan and Don Quijote
have been revamped several times to work in
several types of media. Be sure to check it out
and get to know the characters that have won
over Spain.
• Symbols
• There are several symbols that form part
of the traditional culture. Some are more
noticable than others but each has an
emotional or historical significance that
has kept the attention of audiences all
around the world.
• Here are a few to get you thinking about
Spanish history and culture!
• History of Spanish Dance
• The concept of Spanish dance immediately
conjures up images of the strumming guitars,
stomping feet and bright dresses of flamenco.
While many people make this common
connection between Spain and flamenco, a
plethora of traditional dances from Spain's
various regions weave into the lengthy history of
Spanish dance. For example, not many people
would ever expect to visit Spain and hear the
music of bagpipes and tambourines floating
through the air, yet it is the traditional music
accompanying Spanish dance across northern
Spain
• Traditional Spanish Dances
• Jota Aragonesa: This typical dance hails from the north of Spain, namely Aragón, and features a fast tempo as
couples dance with their hands raised high above their heads playing castanets. Moorish influences are probable,
as it is loosely attributed to a Moorish poet who was kicked out of Valencia during the 12th century.
Sardana: Several couples join hands and dance in a closed circle in this traditional dance from Catalonia.
Muñeira: Danced in twos or alone along to the music of bagpipes, this traditional "Miller's Dance" is typical
throughout Galicia and Asturias.
Zambra: The zambra began as a Moorish dance, but with monarchs Fernando and Isabel's reconquista of Spain,
the Moors were able to conserve the dance by adapting it to Spanish dance customs.
Bolero: One of the oldest and most traditional dances of the history of Spanish dance, the bolero is a quick
Spanish dance boasting sudden pauses and sharp turns.
Fandango: At one point the most famous dance of Spain, the fandango is a lively, happy Spanish danced in two's.
Paso doble: A quick one-step Spanish dance.
Flamenco: A passionate dance hailing from gypsies, flamenco is internationally famous. Learn more!
Sevillana: Lively and joyous dance typical of Seville and reminiscent of flamenco that features four distinct parts.
• Spanish Eating Customs: Meals
• A normal day's breakfast- or desayuno- typically consists merely of a cup of coffee,
although it's also commonplace to accompany your steaming café con leche with a
croissant or other pastry. While an American traditional breakfast has pancakes,
bacon, and eggs, the Spanish "traditional" breakfast consists of the vastly popular
churros, served sprinkled with sugar or dunked in hot chocolate.
Spaniards eat their lunch, or comida, between 2:00 and 4:00 in the afternoon.
Serving as the day's main meal, it is traditionally quite a bit larger than the dinner
meal, or cena. A typical lunch will have several courses. The first course is the lighter
part of the meal, usually consisting of a salad or soup, while the second course is
normally your typical fish or meat dish. A dessert can be a simple piece of fruit, a
typical Spanish flan, or a sweet pastry or cake. While there are of course many
people who eat full meals, the Spanish dinner (cena) is traditionally much smaller
than the midday comida. It often consisting of something lighter like a salad, a
sandwich, or a selection of tapas. Spaniards eat late for this final meal of the day-
even more so on weekends and during the summer- sitting down to eat anytime from
9:00 until 11:00 in the evening
• Spanish Eating Customs: Siesta
• No, it's not a myth. Yes, the infamous siesta really does exist. It began long
ago as after eating the large mid-day meal farmworkers needed to rest and
digest before going back out to work the fields. While this daily break
doesn't necessarily include a nap, businesses and stores do shut down for
about two hours and many people return home to eat with their families.
Spanish Eating Customs: Wine
• Whether out at a restaurant or in the home with the family, it is very typical
to drink wine along with a meal. So common, in fact, that restaurants
offering a menú almost always include wine in the advertised price.
Spanish Eating Customs: Coffee
• Coffee is quite the Spanish phenomenon. Many Spaniards drink several
cups of their favorite caffeinated beverage in the course of a single day.
Coffee also traditionally follows a Spanish meal and is served after the
dessert. To fit in with the locals, ask for a café con leche (coffee with milk), a
café solo (coffee without milk), or a café cortado (coffee with some milk).
Spanish Eating Customs: Tipping
• While its practice is completely voluntary, many restaurant patrons choose
to leave a modest tip of around 5-10% after a meal.
DRINK
• Spanish Wine
• From the refreshing finos of Andalusia to the rich
red wines of La Rioja, Spain serves up a wine
culture delightful to the palates of both
connoisseurs and amateurs alike. With 50 wine
regions boasting red, white, sparkling, rosé, and
sherry wines spread throughout the country,
Spain is the 3rd largest wine producer in the
world. With a reputation like that, you can
imagine the abundance and unmatched quality
of the vineyards and their products
• Spanish Wine Regions
• If you're looking to really delve into and learn about the intricacies of the Spanish
wine culture, many of the vineyards and bodegas - some of which are hundreds of
years old and feature stunning architecture - offer tours and of course generous
samplings. The regions of Ribera del Duero, Priorat, and especially La Rioja boast
their deliciously hearty red wines. For top-notch white and sparkling wines,
Catalonia's Penedes region is the place to be, while the Galician region of the Rias
Baixas has earned quite a reputation for its array of fruity white wines. Spanish
Wine: Sherry
• One of Spain's most famous contributions to the international wine scene is its sherry
(jerez). In fact, all of the world's genuine sherry comes from the region surrounding
the small Spanish city of Jerez- which lends its name to its wine product. The sherry
varieties, ranging from the light and refreshing manzanillas and finos to the darker
and stronger olorosos and Pedro Ximénez, are Spanish wines that are popular
throughout Spain, especially in Andalusia, and the world.
• Spanish Wine: Cava
• Cava, Spain's tasty response to France's champagne, is a sparkling Spanish wine
that hails principally from the Spanish wine regions of Catalonia, Aragón, and
Navarre. Like with sherry, its international presence once again puts Spain on the
wine radar, as it is now the 2nd largest producer of sparkling wines in the world.