Becauseof close-mindedness and lack of cultural education, people have a difficult timeinteracting with different societies. I feel that people shouldn’t stereotypebecause this might lead to misjudgment. For example, I have personallyexperienced this type of stereotyping of my Egyptian culture. Although peopleview Egypt as a plain desert with camel riders, my experience from living thereshows Egypt to be a developing civilized country with a great history . People think about Egypt in this manner because of the media.
Thenews primarily exposes the uncivilized parts of the country. For instance, thewell known news broad-casting channel CNN showed the circumcising of a younggirl on the television screen. This is a harsh way to introduce a culture topeople. Often, CNN shows cases of the Egyptian desert with camel riders. Thisnarrow perspective influences the society’s view of our culture.
Another example is an article in the National Geographic magazineabout Egypt (written by Peter Throux in April 1993). The writer described thecountry as smoggy, dirty, over-populated and with traffic problems. The articleintroduced Egypt as a superstitious culture which was graphically proven in apicture shown in the article. This picture showed the head of a woman with thebody of a snake.
This picture gives the reader the impression that Egyptiansbelieve in black magic. Whenever the media introduce a culture, they should mention all thepositive and the negative aspects of that specific culture. For instance,whenever you watch a program about the United States of America back home, yousee only sky-scrapers and big luxurious cities. This doesn’t portray the entireUnited States. In reality, Egypt is a mixture of well educated and uneducated people.
I have lived there for many years and from experience, I think it’s aninteresting country. Egypt has the Nile River which supports the cities aroundit with water and green areas. In Egypt, the government encourages the peopleto move away from the cities and start agricultural communities with greatfacilities. This encouragement helps provide more agricultural areas and morejobs for the Egyptian people.
This enrichment has stabilized the currency forsix years and has also improved the growth of the national income. In Egypt,there are the “pyramids” which are symbols of the Egyptian pride. Temples,churches and mosques show a great art of design. These buildings are not justconstructions, they are decorations and a history for all generations. Thishistory has motivated the Egyptians to continue their modern progresses.
It hasalso influenced the Egyptian traditions. For example, the Egyptian ancestorspassed down many traditions. These traditions emphasize respect for elders andfamily. In conclusion, my view is that culture has it’s good and bad qualities. The negative ones in the Egyptian culture are the traffic, extensive paper work(with certified signature), hard-to-find housing and beggars. This occursbecause of the over population problem.
The Egyptian government is trying tofix this problem by doing everything possible. I wish every person could view the Nile River at night, the historicalsites (such as the pyramids) and the beaches of the red sea, to fully understandthe beauty of nature in this part of the world. Egypt is mentioned in the holybook Quran as a secure country with generous people living in it. I wisheveryone could see the world with an open mind, rather than with an eye ofignorance and prejudice.