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Cultural Values in Our Society

Humans are social creatures. Since the dawn of Homo sapiens nearly 250,000 years ago, people have grouped together into communities in order to survive. Living together, people form common habits and behaviors from specific methods of childrearing to preferred techniques for obtaining food.

It’s important to note that geographical place is an important factor in culture beliefs and practices, and society, the social structures and organization of individuals and groups. Almost every human behavior, from shopping to marriage to expressions of feelings, is learned.

In the United States, people tend to view marriage as a choice between two people, based on mutual feelings of love. In other nations and in other times, marriages have been arranged through an intricate process of interviews and negotiations between entire families, or in other cases, through a direct system, such as a “mail order bride.” To someone raised in New York City, the marriage customs of a family from Nigeria may seem strange or even wrong.

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Types of Culture

There are two types of culture which are existing in this world. Here are those:

Material Culture : The cultures which are the manifestations of some physical objects, spaces and resources created by people of that particular culture. Homes, schools, mosques, churches, temples, factories, offices etc. do get included in this.

Non-Material Culture : The all elements of a culture which are intangible (which cannot be touched, hold, felt or tasted) are comes under these segments. The examples of it are morals, rules, values, languages, beliefs, arts, music, literature, social roles, customs, traditions and many more.

Importance of cultural values : If one can see beyond the tangible cultural aspects then can see the actual importance of it. Culture works like the vein of the society through which the life flows. Cultural values bind people together which makes them strong and united.

It makes people learn tolerance and understand brotherhood which paves the path of social harmony, economic improvement and physical well-being of the community and the others. A culture is nothing without its values. The cultural values are considered as the spine of any organizational culture to which they belong to. They provide the right guidance to the people which results in positive performances and behavior.

The Culture of Bangladesh

The creation of the independent nation represents the triumph of ethnic and cultural politics. The region that is now Bangladesh has been part of a number of important political entities, including Indian empires, Buddhist kingdoms, the Moghul empire, the British empire and the Pakistani nation. Bangladesh was founded as a “democratic, secular, socialist state,” but the new state represented the triumph of a Bangladeshi Muslim culture and language. Bangladeshi national identity is rooted in a Bengali culture.

Economic Status : Bangladesh is one of the developing countries in the world. The only significant natural resource is natural gas. Approximately 75 percent of the workforce is involved in agriculture, and 15 percent and 10 percent are employed in the service and industrial sectors, respectively. Bangladesh has been characterized as a nation of small, subsistence based farmers, and nearly all people in rural areas are involved in the production or processing of agricultural goods.

The majority of the rural population engages in agricultural production, primarily of rice, jute, pulses, wheat, and some vegetables. In recent years industrial growth has occurred primarily in the garment and textile industries. Jute processing and jute product fabrication remain major industries.

Food Habits : Rice and fish are the foundation of the diet; a day without a meal with rice is nearly inconceivable. Fish, meats, poultry, and vegetables are cooked in spicy curry (torkari) sauces that incorporate cumin, coriander, cloves, cinnamon, garlic, and other spices. Muslims do not consume pork and Hindus do not consume beef. Breakfast is the meal that varies the most, being rice or bread-based. A favorite breakfast dish is panthabhat. For many men, especially in urbanized regions and bazaars, no day is complete without a cup of sweet tea with milk at a small tea stall, sometimes accompanied by confections.

Social Stratification

There is also class system in Muslim in Bangladesh. The ashrafis a small upper-class of old-money descendants of early Muslim officials and merchants whose roots are in Afghanistan, Turkey, and Iran. The rest of the population is conceived of as the indigenous majority atraf.

This distinction mirrors the Hindu separation between the Brahman and those in lower castes. In rural areas, class is linked to the amount of land owned, occupation, and education. In urban areas the great majority of people are laborers. There is a middle class of small businessmen and midlevel office workers. One of the most obvious symbols of class status is dress.

National Festivals and Cultural Assets

A series of festivals varying from race to race are observed here. Some of the Muslim rites are Eide-Miladunnabi, Eid-ul-Fitr, Eid-ul-Azha, Muharram etc. Hindus observe Durga Puja, Saraswati Puja, Kali Puja and many other pujas. Christmas is observed by Christian. Bangalees have also another national festival, Pohela Boishakh, observed by all classes of people. Bangalees are also rich in literary heritage. The earliest available specimen of Bengali literature is about a thousand years old.

During the mediaeval period. Bengali Literature developed considerably with the patronage of Muslim rulers. Chandi Das, Daulat Kazi and Alaol are some of the famous poets of the period. The era of modern Bengali Literature began in the late nineteenth century Rabindranath Tagore, the Nobel Laureate is a vital part of Bangalee culture.

Kazi Nazrul Islam, Michael Madhusudan Datta, Sarat Chandra Chattopadhaya, Bankim Chandra Chattopadhaya, Mir Mosharraf Hossain and Kazi Abdul Wadud are the pioneers of modern Bengali Literature. Traditional music is also a great feature in our culture. Music can be divided into three distinct categories-classical, folk and modern. The classical music, both vocal and instrumental is rooted in the past of the subcontinent.

Ustad Alauddin Khan and Ustad Ayet Ali Khan are two names in classical instrumental music who are internationally known. The store of folk song abounds in spiritual lyrics of Lalan Shah, Hasan Raja, Romesh Shill and many anonymous lyricists.

Zainul Abedin, Kamrul Hassan, Anwarul Haque, Shafiuddin Ahmed and S. M. Sultan are famous artists in Bangladesh. Zainul Abedin earned international fame for his sketches on famine of 1943 in Bangladesh. Drama has an old tradition and is very popular among Bangalees.

In Dhaka more than a dozen theater groups have been regularly staging locally written plays as well as those adopted from famous writers, mainly of European origin. Folk dance is also another rich cultural part of ours. The folk, tribal and Middle Eastern traits are also common.

Among the tribal dances, particularly popular are Monipuri and Santal. The transport system in our culture is very peculiar. In rural areas bullock carts, buffalo carts and tomtoms (horse carts) are commonly used. Brides are carried to the bridegrooms’ places by Palki. Being a land crisscrossed by rivers, Bangladesh has a wide-ranged tradition of ferry transport.

Wooden boat popularly called nawka is a vital means of rural communication. Rickshaw is a very common vehicle to Bangladeshis. Another important aspect of the culture of Bangladesh is clothing. Bangladeshi woman usually wear Saris, finely embroidered quilted patchwork cloth produced by the village woman. Woman will traditionally wear their hair in a twisted bun, which is called the “Beni style”. Hindus will traditionally wear Dhuty for religious purposes. These days most men of Bangladesh wear shirts and pants.

Government and non-government organizations like Bangla Academy, Nazrul Institute, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy, Fine arts Institute, Chhayanat etc. play significant role to flourish Bangladeshi art and culture providing encouragement in music, dráma, dance, recitation, art etc. Many other cultural organizations are also popularizing Bangladeshi art and culture.

Cultural Values are not static; they vary across time and between groups as people evaluate, debate, and change collective societal beliefs. Values also vary from culture to culture. Though cultural values are changing continuously, they construct and improve our society for our betterments. And the mechanisms of it are highly effective.

Md. Mahabub Alam

I am a committed educator, blogger and YouTuber and I am striving to achieve extraordinary success in my chosen field. After completing Masters in Anthropology from Jagannath University, I am working as Chief Accounts Officer in a national newspaper of the country. I really want your prayers and love.

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