Unanswered [6] | Urgent [0]
  

Home / Undergraduate   % width Posts: 3

Is it one's surroundings or one's history that creates their identity?- own topic


ninasen17 3 / 4  
Dec 28, 2010   #1
Is it one's surroundings or one's history that creates their identity?
It's the days when I am surrounded by cars, buses and the occasional cow, manically trying to maneuver themselves between each other that I sit back and think, "Wow I actually live in India." After three years in this country it still comes as a surprise to me.

Even though I live in a country where Indian culture is everywhere, whether it is blaring from stereos or staring me in the face as I drive past a billboard, it's ironic how I have never felt more African. I feel that my experiences of being an expatriate in India have allowed me to embrace, not only the cultures of others, but of my own country.

I previously believed that my history defines me but now I understand that history has become less of a factor in determining my identity and my surroundings have become more influential.

If I had stayed in South Africa, my country's history of racial segregation would have molded my character rather than the country itself, the country after freedom was attained. In South Africa, I was racially defined as an Indian and I am glad to say that in India I have no race label. I am South African, it is not my race but my nationality; it does not define me but influences the choices I make. During Apartheid, I would have had to declare my race as an Indian. I would have been expected to perform the roles of an Indian in society but I am a part of the generation who escaped the regime. I am a part of the generation that can say "I am free and I have always been free."

Even though I establish myself less with the Indian culture, I have not completely dismissed my background. I still think of my grandmother as I see a Hanuman statue being built near a temple; I still remember the prayers my family performed during religious holidays as I overhear devout chanting.

I do not think I will ever be able to define myself through one identity but I do believe that I am made up of various cultures, the predominant one being African as a result of my current experiences. I may find myself being composed of another culture as I progress through life but I believe that finding an identity is a lifelong journey.
Kimbi18 1 / 3  
Dec 29, 2010   #2
Reword this sentence I previously believed that my history defines me but now I understand that history has become less of a factor in determining my identity and my surroundings have become more influential. /font] to something like " In the past, I believed that my history defined me but now I have realized my surroundings... ".
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Jan 12, 2011   #3
I'm feeling the need for a little thesis statement added to the end of that brief first paragraph. What's it going to be? What is the sentence that captures the message of the essay. Tack it onto the end of that first para.

:-)

Even though I establish myself less with--Do you mean to say identify less?


Home / Undergraduate / Is it one's surroundings or one's history that creates their identity?- own topic