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Culture Shock Solved by Building Inner Beauty

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Date 9/24/2016

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Culture Shock Solved by Building Inner Beauty

Culture difference influences people inside on every aspect. Like the air one breaths, people never get rid of or live without its impact. However, this will become a serious problem if people have to go to a new country with other culture, or the culture of where people live in dramatically changed. Then people will find adaptation into a new culture is as hard as a millstone, especially in physical appearance, also known as the culture of beauty. Alisa Valdes, the writer of My Hips, My Caderas, was born in New Mexico, whose mother is white and American, but father is Cuban. In her article, she is a female worried about her hips, which are too voluptuous for her to fit in America society. However, she is not the only one facing cultural difference problem. Niranjana, the writer of another article, Weight of the world, was born in India but moved to the state, faced the double standard of beauty in weight. These two stories epitomize in many ways that people meet problems in adapting a new culture. People sometimes have to move to another place to live, and enter into another culture they are not familiar with. Does it really have to change our physical appearance to adapt into a new culture, do the physical appearance has so significant role when people meet a new culture? The answer is a definite no, a key to solve cultural difference is building people’s inner beauty, and let others admit this beauty of people’s owned, instead of caring too much on the people’s physical one.

People’s body shape is more likely determined before they were born. Like gene, play a huge role on how people look. Both writers had gone through a hard time trying to change their appearance but failed. Alisa Valdes “pushed hundreds of leg lifts on her bedroom floor” (47), tried to get rid of hips by doing exercise. As well as Niranjana Iyer, she wrote “For the first time in my life, I visited a gym, where my whimpers became shrieks of pain.” (51). But however hard they had tried, it’s just waste efforts and failed in the end. It’s hard for people to change their physical appearance, and sometimes, it is not possible to reach that goal. Scientists have long known that genes are the software of life, determining what a creature will look like and where the parts go. Like Alisa’s hips, she has hips not because she ate too much, because these are what she was born with, simply because she is a seed of Cubans. People can’t oppose to what they look like, because this is nature.

Changing people’s body shape to meet a different standard is difficult. And use this way to adapt into a new culture is not useful. “Sometimes I fast for days, sometimes I make myself puke up rice and beans. Usually I get over it, but it always comes back” (48), when Alisa Valdes wanted to get rid of her hips. She tried but failed every time. Not only her but also Niranjana Iyer, said “my extra poundage, however, was like a cockroach; it might disappear for a while, but it could never be eradicated ” (51). The standard of beauty may be relatively same in some aspect, like tall and slim in nowadays society. And certainly, using individual’s effort to influence the whole culture is impossible. What a person, as an individual, only can do is to meet the culture. But even meet the culture is not an easy task. Nevertheless, standard changed fast, 20 years ago, people didn’t regard this degree of slim as beauty. Who knows what standard will be 10 or 20 years later. Even if a person can predict the future standard of beauty, touch the standard doesn’t mean the one are automatically adapt into a new culture. The stories like a beautiful-look person but lack of friends, a handsome man having terrible relationship, is widely spread. A beautiful face can help people draw others’ attention, but won’t help them in understanding culture, forming good relationship, contributing to career success. On the contrary, in real society, many cases show that men without attractive appearances can enjoy their success. So what should people do if one wants to adjust themselves under another society?

Inner beauty is the very key to break the circle of physical appearance standard problem. In the end of two articles, both writers seem to find a way. “I dream of the day when bicultural Latinas will set the standards for beauty and success, when our voluptuous caderas won’t bar us from getting through those narrow American doors” (49), written by Alisa, shows that she will no longer try to change her body shape, but to chase a new standard which success and appearance can get in the same time for all the bicultural Latinas. And “Time to go on a diet, I realized, I opted for the Mediterranean one” (51), in Niranjana’s words, indicated that she will live just on her owned standard. From that moment on, both writers started to live on the right way after went through so many sufferings. Actually there is no need to pay so much attention to the outside look. What’s really important to adapt into new culture is building one’s inner beauty. So what is inner beauty? Inner beauty is something can’t be seen but only can be felt. The standard of it is different between individual to individual but is not random. Inner beauty is a combination of person’s character. Physical appearance is only useful when people first glance at you, but to build a long-time relationship, a network with other, people’s inner beauty, which combined one’s knowledge, social skills, personality, kindness, and so on, will be truly helpful. For example, Salma Hayek, is a famous Mexican-American film actress, she didn’t try to change her physical appearance but she used her perfect acting capability won a lot of attention and awards who is a perfect example that one doesn’t have to change their appearances to get into another culture, but by their talents, which are also a part of inner beauty. If describing people adapt into a new culture in terms of a man walking through a gate. Attractive physical appearance is a strong body, and inner beauty is the impetus which pushes people forward, and motive people toward destination. That is the key people adapt into a new culture. That is the factual aspect people should pay attention to. Like paintings to a painter, music to a musician, movies to a director, inner beauty is the indicator to different people. You may chat to a person for a minute and find their appearance pleasant or not-so-pleasant at first. But as the conversation goes on longer, you may start to pick qualities and traits, and without even realizing it, you may start to find a person’s inner side more and more beautiful, charming or not.

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