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Cultural Studies

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Cultural Syncretism and its Impact
Joanna Abele, Cassandra Drapeau, Amanda Lawson, Brandon Nelson, and Crystal Wooten
American Intercontinental University – Online
March 3, 2013

Abstract
In gaining an understanding of how early civilizations lived, we can see what impact they have had as they migrated to the New World. By examining what they left behind we can also see the impact they have had on many diverse cultures and societies today.

Cultural Syncretism and its Impact
Introduction
Cultural syncretism occurs when two opposite cultures mix and blend their cultural beliefs, whether they be political or religious, to produce or to start a new culture or religion. Historically, syncretism has been seen as an attempt to reconcile disparities between various cultures. Africa and the Americas both had help with other factors like weapons, religion, and technological advancements. When it came to cultural beliefs, China and India’s values were very different. They would operate from outside of the traditional beliefs, which made them much more resistant to syncretism.
Compare and contrast the legacies of cultural syncretism in Africa and the Americas with the resistance to cultural change Westerners encountered in China and India.

When different aspects of cultural philosophies or religions blend together and disparities are compromised, cultural syncretism occurs. According to the 1830 American census 2.3 million people were of African descent and there was only 12.8 million in the country (Joyner, 2003). Also of that 12.8 million 2.44% were free Africans, 15.56% were enslaved Africans and 82% were free white people (Joyner, 2003). Within the United States, the large number of Africans along with their culture greatly contributed to the culture and history of America. The people brought with them knowledge of science and technology from the West...

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