Throughout history, outside influences, such as habitat/environment, other cultures, and the progression of time, have affected many elements of cultures all over the world. A good example of influences like these is in the culture in China. First, their economy has been heavily affected by their environment. The coastline of China is very irregular, and it features many natural harbors, encouraging oversea trade. The environment in China has also influenced the peoples satisfaction of their basic needs – specifically food.
The northern part of China has very ittle rainfall so the farmers must irrigate their crops. When the water supply isnt adequate, famine results. The technological development of the culture there has been influenced too, by the habitat. In China, the Qin Ling Mountains, which divide the country into North and South, block the cold northern winds from reaching the south. Therefore the climate in the south is warmer, and so the houses are built of easily – ventilated wood, as opposed to houses built of mud or mud — brick in the north. Foreign cultures have also influenced elements of cultures.
Chinas creative expression was suppressed by communists, led by Mao Zedong, starting in 1949 when the took over. The communists eliminated private enterprise, discouraged independent thinking, and disallowed artists and writers from expressing themselves. Another culture which has been affected by outside influences is in Japan. One element of their culture which has been affected is their health. Their habitat poses serious dangers, because of many active volcanoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis, which are huge tidal waves sometimes caused by underground earthquakes.
But the earthquakes have led to another cultural effect. A technological advancement has taken place as the Japanese have built skyscrapers which can withstand the force of an earthquake. The values of Japans people have been influenced by the habitat, too. The people value the sea very much because it provides so much for them. Japans coastline is long and irregular, so there are many natural harbors. Fishing is a large industry in Japan and fish accounts for a large portion of the peoples diet. Also, the sea promotes trade, both internal and foreign, with the Inland Sea being the main highway.
Other cultures have affected the peoples satisfaction of their basic physical need for food. The first inhabitants of Japan were hunters and fisherman who made it to Japan from mainland Asia. They were later followed by people who knew how to grow rice. A third culture which has been influenced by outside factors is that from Korea. The economy there has been assisted by the environment; rivers flowing out of the mountains have provided hydroelectric power. Satisfaction of the need for food is affected by the environment. North Korea has much harsher winters, featuring heavy snows and bitter winds, so it an only grow one crop a year.
However, warmer, South Korea has a much longer growing season – the rice yield is among the world largest. Also, time has had an effect on the culture. Through time, Koreans have learned to develop more effective and efficient schooling methods, to improve education – Koreas literacy rate is close to ninety – five percent. Almost all children attend elementary school, and most graduate from high school. Other cultures have influenced the social patterns of Koreas inhabitants. Long ago, Japan attempted to attack China through Korea.
This estroyed much of Korea, but with the help of China, it was able to fend off the aggressors. Weakened, Korea later could not resist the attacks of the Manchus and were forced to pay a tribute to them after they took over China. All these violent relations lead Korea to turn to a policy of isolationism, avoiding foreign involvements and contacts. In conclusion, you can see that outside influences like habitat or environment, other cultures, or sometimes simply time, have sometimes affected many different elements in different cultures, sometimes to extreme extents.