When Cultures Clash

In: English and Literature

Submitted By boston4
Words 1709
Pages 7
In, Bend it Like Beckham, the main character Jess, lives in a Panjabi immigrant community and is not alone in the challenges she faces as she tries to balance her cultural heritage with the western influence that she encounters in the surrounding English community. Jess must deal with the wants and restrictions of her family while trying to be a part of the western culture she is exposed to at the soccer league. I lived the past two years in Hong Kong and I watched my fellow students struggle with the same dilemma. My classmates and friends tried to blend their culture and parental expectations with their own goals and desire to adopt many elements of western society. Nowhere was this more evident than in my acedemic improvement. Chris, a close friend of mine in Hong Kong, went through a similar experience as he tried to pursue a career in acting and yet live up to the expectations of his father who wanted his son to follow him into the family business. He had to juggle the norms of his traditional Chinese parents with his own wants.

I moved to Hong Kong two years ago with my family where I attend the Canadian International School. It was quite an experience. We moved into an area where many of the tycoons of China live. All the children who live there attend private school and many are enrolled in the international schools because their parents want them to become more worldly and to be ready for the global society that Asia is fast becoming. For many of the students, they are the first generation to grow up with money and western exposure at a young age. I quickly realized that many kids are westernized, or “Americanized” as some phrase it, but the problem is their parents and elders are not. Although they want their children to become modern and westernized so that they can compete globally, they still want the fealty and submissiveness that comes…...

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