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Japanese and Indian Cultures Essays

All countries in the world are unique and differ greatly from one another. Even though, they have many differences, they still have many things in common. When one thinks of Japan and India, not many similarities come to mind. They may come up with similarities such as, Japan and India are both Asian countries and both have roots in Buddhism. But, actually they share several more cultural similarities. The Japanese culture and the Indian culture are similar in that they both believe in the importance of a joint family system, education and gender roles, but they differ greatly when it comes to marriages.

In both Japan and India, the family is the most important social unit. It is not uncommon to have extended families living under one roof. The extended family would include members like one’s parents, children, the children’s spouses, their children and grandparents. The extended family system allows the older generation to share knowledge about the cultures and traditions of their country to the younger generation. Both Japan and India have strong gender roles that remain the cornerstone of the family responsibilities.

Both countries, believe the men are the sole bread- winners and they are responsible for the financial security of the household. The women are responsible for all the household chores, raising the children, and being obedient to her husband. The children are taught discipline, restraint and the importance of an education. Most societies agree that it is a basic human nature to care for one’s infant. They don’t put a lot of emphasis on the sex of the baby, just that it’s a strong and healthy baby. But, in Japan and India the sex of the baby is just as important as the health of the baby.

Infanticide-the killing of an infant by the parent- has been accepted by both countries for many centuries. “A common form of unwanted child infanticide is the killing of female babies that occurs in some countries because of a cultural preference for male children” (World Book, 2009. Nov. 2009). Even though, infanticide isn’t a common practice in most societies today; it still exists in Japan and India. In honor of the birth of a son, both Japanese and Indian families celebrate a special day for their male children. Japan celebrates “Children’s Day”-this national holiday celebrates the growth and happiness of children.

The Japanese families fly kites in shape of carp to show Japanese boys the importance of strength and courage. Much like the Japanese’s tradition, Indian families also celebrate a “Children’s Day”-this day is to remind the family of their commitment to the welfare and the rights of children. In a traditional Japanese and Indian family, it’s the responsibilities of the children to care for their parents in their old age. Usually, it’s the wife of the eldest son that cares for the aging parents. Education is very disciplined and taken serious in both Japan and India.

Students in both countries do very well in Science and Math. Students are required to wear school uniforms. Females make up less than half of the students in school, due to the discrimination toward females. As education becomes a bigger part of society and the number of students continues to increase, it will have a positive impact of their economies. Gender roles between Japan and India are similar. The men’s roles in the family continue to be the bread-winner. It’s the male’s responsibility to provide financial stability in the home.

The women’s roles in the family are to take care the household duties, care for the children and her husband. Most women in both the Japanese culture and India culture still wear traditional clothing. It is important in each culture that the women dress and behave appropriately. Japanese women still wear traditional kimonos. “In Japan it is still a tradition for the women to wear kimonos. “The kimono provides an elaborate coding system for gender and life-cycle stage. The higher one’s status, the shorter the sleeve of one’s kimono.

Unmarried women’s sleeve length is nearly to the ground, whereas a married women’s sleeve is nearly is short” (Miller 2007, pg. 318). In India, women wear traditional Indian clothing called a sari. A sari is a strip of unstitched cloth, which is draped over the body in various styles. Japan and India differ greatly when it comes to marriages. Japanese marriages are no longer arranged marries. The bride and groom are allowed to pick who they wish to marry. It’s Japanese’s tradition for the bride-to-be painted in pure white from head to toe.

The bride wears a white kimono and a beautiful headpiece with charms to bring lots of good luck to the new couple. The groom-to-be wears a black kimono. In India, arranged marriages are accepted as normal and have been for centuries. Arranged marriages are usually planned by the parents and other respected family members. Arranged marriages are made after taking into account factors such as age, economic status, and education, the background of the families and even astrological compatibility of the couple’s horoscope.

While arranged marriages are still common in India, love marriages are being accepted into Indian culture, due to westernization and education. Although, Japan and India share in some similarities in their culture and traditions, they are still worlds apart from each other, socially, economically and religiously. It is common knowledge that Japan and India are friendly with one another. The most prominent Japanese companies, such as Sony, Toyota, and Honda, are found in India. Japan has an investment in the Indian automobile giant Suzuki. Due to the positive influence of Japan in India, the Indian economy has increased dramatically.

As the bond grows between Japan and India, we may see more and more similarities between Japan and India in decades to come. Sample student – Well-done. You have good organization and covered the content well. Remember to cite all your sources in your paper, not just direct quotes. Content was covered well. 10/10

References

Miller, B. (2007). Cultural Anthropology. Boston: Allyn and Bacon. Encyclopedia Britannica- www. Britannica. com Kaye, Neil S. “Infanticide. ” World Book Advanced. World Book, 2009. Web. 16 Nov. 2009. Lal, Vinay, and Anil Lal. “India. ” World Book Advanced. World Book, 2009. Web. 15 Nov. 2009

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