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Step 1: Identification
Fantasia Goodwin is a basketball player who joined women’s team in her junior session. During this period, she became pregnant and found it difficult to make a decision of informing the coach. However, Goodwin participated in the play for entire season until when she delivered a bouncy baby boy. The assignment question is “What should Fantasia have done?” The following are the additional ethical issues I identified.
1. Fantasia Goodwin is a basketball player and is pregnant during her session.
Is it right for her to inform the coach about her condition?
2. She proceeds to play the entire season in her condition.
Is it right to participate in the game while pregnant?
3. What if Goodwin subjects herself to risks such as miscarriage of the baby?
Is it right for her to play and expose her life and that of the baby to danger?
4. Pregnant athletes who terminate their game end up missing scholarship opportunities.
Is it fair that Goodwin make a decision of staying home until she delivers and miss such opportunities?
5. Goodwin claims that even if she had an abortion, she would still be playing for her team.
Is this fair and does it imply that pregnant women are selfish?
Irresponsibility is the central ethical issue to be resolved because it creates a negative impact on behaviors of players. It leads to wrong decision making when they opt to proceed with the game even in their pregnant situation. The reason is because they perceive athletics as a way of maintaining fitness by exercising even when they are pregnant. Furthermore, this enables them to remain competitive but is a bad decision that exposes the woman and fetus to danger. The solution that could assist in reducing irresponsibility among pregnant women is to stop participating in athletics. For instance, a woman might assume that she is fit but she has a hypertension problem that could cause termination of the pregnancy. In such a case, this can be avoided when a pregnant woman takes responsibility of her condition to rest for safety of the baby. In addition, problems evident among irresponsible pregnant women who proceed with athletics are oxygen deficit, hyperthermia and sports injuries (Zedd 65).
If pregnant women are irresponsible of their condition, it could lead to sports injuries. This implies that a direct impact caused by athletics damages the fetus or the mother’s womb. Due to this potential risk, it is up to the mother to take responsibility of her condition by terminating athletics. The consequences of athletics could cause trauma to the fetus and the only sure solution is for the woman to make a good decision by taking a break until when she delivers the baby. Irresponsibility among pregnant women could also lead to oxygen deficit. This is stimulated by factors such as intensity of the practice, duration and type that could affect the heart rate of the developing baby. In some circumstances, if a pregnant athlete attends practice on a regular basis, it enables the fetus to get used to stress of the exercise and subjects it to a better condition. This could be a similar situation to that of Fantasia Goodwin because she managed to deliver her baby safely despite the continuous exercises during her pregnancy. On the contrary, for unfit women, high intensity practices could affect their fetus because it decreases flow of blood to the uterus leading to serious oxygen shortage.
The solution to this issue is for pregnant athletes to be conscious and pay attention to movement of the fetus (Wyne 134). This is because developing babies in the womb stop moving when they lack sufficient supply of oxygen. In addition, responsible pregnant women who participate in athletics must drink plenty of water to keep them safe. The relevance to this information in relation to irresponsibility among pregnant women is that it enables them to make a wise decision. For instance, the significance of a pregnant woman being responsible is that she takes caution to avoid miscarriages and abortions that could happen during athletics. These details create awareness to pregnant women to check with medical practitioners if they are unfit or fit to go for exercises in their condition.
Step 2: Research
The following are sources that are relevant to the central ethical issue in relation to Goodwin’s condition.
- “Unfairness during sports”
This is evident when women athletes are denied a chance to participate in sports when they are pregnant. Based on this case, the writer suggests that when a female athlete is pregnant, she should be terminated immediately from exercising for her safety and that of the child. This is an ethical issue because it affects only female athletes and not men. For instance, this could mean immediate suspension of the athlete against her will (Barbara 72).
- “Unconsciousness by pregnant women”
Conversely, another issue noted from the case is that pregnant women need to be conscious of their situation because this contributes to responsibility of their actions. According to medical experts, this tends to affect pregnant women involved in athletics by exposing them to dangerous threats such as miscarriages.
- “ Discrimination against Female Athletes”
This is another ethical issue that is experienced in sports. Discrimination against female athletes is another challenge experienced in sports. The article exhibits how the public discriminates against pregnant women by assuming that they cannot participate in athletics. As a result, this affects the female participants who are pregnant when it terminates their scholarship in athletics.
- “ Selfishness among pregnant athletes”
Another issue in the case is whether pregnant women are selfish; this is evident when Goodwin ignored her responsibility as a mother by exposing her baby at risk. In this case, there is also a challenge when sports officials fail to adhere to NCAA rules. For instance, it becomes an issue when sports officials do not exhibit integrity by denying pregnant women athletes the red t-shirt option that could permit them to participate in the 6th year to prove their eligibility in athletics. On the contrary, the medical red t-shirts are issued at discretion to be used at a 17 school athletics program (Wyne 165).
Step 3: Analysis
In this section, I evaluate on options that Fantasia Goodwin could have opted to take, the stakeholders affected and how each choice affects an individual stakeholder. The stakeholders involved in this case are Fantasia Goodwin, medical practioners, the coach, team players and individuals who offer scholarships. The following are decisions that Goodwin could opt for;
- Visit the medical practitioners for advice
- Inform the coach about her pregnant condition
- Be loyal to her team and benefit from scholarships
- Drop out of the team and return after delivery
- Continue playing and ignore the risks that come along such as abortion.
|Advice||Inform couch||Be loyal||Drop out||Continue playing|
|Fantasia Goodwin||If she seeks advice from medical practioners, it enables her to know if she is fit to continue playing in her pregnant condition.||Telling the couch about her condition will make him dismiss her from the team.||If Goodwin decides to remain at her team, she might benefit from scholarship opportunities.||This option grants her safety from dangerous risks such as abortion.||If Goodwin proceeds playing, she might keep fit but also risk losing the baby.|
|Medical practitioners||If medical staff advices her to take a break, they may not risk their patient losing pregnancy hence will avoid complications from her.||Informing her condition to the couch will make him direct her to medical practitioners who will take care of her.||Being loyal and continuing to play will cause worries to medical staff about her condition.||Medical practitioners will be at peace when she drops out because it’s a sure way of being safe.||This will increase worry among the medical staff as there is high chances of losing the baby.|
|Couch||If she decides to go off, the couch will miss a player in his team.||Informing the couch may convince him to discontinue her from playing.||Being loyal will put the couch at risk to be answerable if anything bad happens.||This will give a couch a difficult time of finding another player to replace her.||The couch may risk going to court if she loses the baby.|
|Team players||If advised to leave, players will miss her company.||This could lead to changes in the team that might make other members uncomfortable.||Loyalty will make other members miss scholarship chances due to her presence.||Dropping out will create a gap that may affect performance of other players in the team.||If she continues playing and abort, it will discourage others to play when pregnant.|
|Scholarship individuals||If Goodwin accepts the advice of taking a break, scholarship individuals may find it difficult to award others considering that she is a best player.||These stakeholders may end up excluding her from scholarship opportunities.||If she remains loyal and be one of the best players, it will force them to increase the number of scholarships.||Dropping out will force these individuals to search for other best players to award.||If she proceeds to play, they will be forced to increase the number of scholarships to be enough to all players who qualify.|
Based on an inductive moral reasoning, there are ethical implications that these potential solutions may have on stakeholders (Morgan 156). For instance, for medical practitioners that are part of the athletics group, this may force them to be concerned and carry out follow-ups on pregnant women who participate in sports. This can be accomplished through checkups to ensure that they are fit to proceed with athletics in their pregnant conditions. In relation to the deductive moral reasoning, ethical implications that potential options have stakeholders affect the organization that is responsible in issuing scholarships. A good example is when an athlete woman is pregnant, she cannot access scholarship because the firm responsible for awarding them terminates her opportunity with thoughts that she cannot compete again in athletics. As a result, this affects stakeholders who offer scholarships and tend to seek for another alternative other than awarding the pregnant women.
Step 4: Application
In this section, I will apply ethical theories to the options that I listed in above steps.
- Consequential ethical theory
Consequential theory could be of help to find a resolution of irresponsibility among pregnant athletes, which is a central ethical issue. In relation to consequential theory, Act suits this case because it reveals that anything a person does at a given time, her overall best consequences are determined by moral and right actions. In regard to irresponsibility, this implies that when a pregnant athlete makes a wise decision by taking responsibility of her actions, this determines her best course of action. For instance, in this case, it is morally right for women in such a condition to take a leave from athletics and return later after delivering for safety purposes.
- Non-consequential ethical theory
The second theory to apply is non-consequential theory concerning natural laws. According to this law, moral standards that govern behaviors of human beings depend on nature of human beings and the universe (Zedd 156). Based on its central principles, this theory is morally right because it reveals how character of human beings depends on their behaviors. For instance, if a pregnant athlete decides to proceed with sports, it is morally acceptable because she is fulfilling her standards by maintaining fitness that is natural in human beings. These central principles of the theories applied assists in resolving the key issue that is irresponsibility among pregnant athletes. For instance, Act is a theory that would assist women to opt for safety measures by taking a break from athletics to keep the baby safe (Morgan 118). Natural law is a theory that incorporates central principles and guides such women to do what they think is right in relation to their nature. For instance, this allows women to exercise in a careful manner to maintain fitness during pregnancy.
Step 5: Decision Making
The wisest and most ethical option is for pregnant women to be responsible for decisions that could lead them to actions that are morally right. Based on research, if pregnant athletes take a break from sports, this could be a relief to stakeholders because they will be sure that they are not exposing baby and mother to risks. Applying the ethical theories and laws, the morally right resolution to central key problem is for pregnant athletes to take responsibility of their actions. This implies that staying away from athletics for some time will assist to keep both of them safe. This is the best solution because it is less dangerous when the pregnant athlete avoid vigorous activities. In addition, the mother will be safe from potential harm caused by athletics that could lead to fetal overheating. It is also the best solution for a pregnant woman to stop participating in athletics to avoid losing the baby through miscarriage.
Step 6: Evaluation
There are three counterarguments against the option I selected as being morally right.
- The first argument is that pregnant women will not be able to keep fit when they avoid exercising. This tends to be unhealthy and may affect the normal growth of fetus in the womb.
- The second argument is that organizations that award scholarships tend to ignore them thinking they are not capable of competing again. As a result, they offer these scholarships to other athletes who are not pregnant hence promote inequality.
- The third argument relates to title IX of Civil Right Acts, it claims that denying pregnant women chances to practice is similar to discriminating them and it prohibits such actions. To defend against these arguments, I concur with the idea of keeping fit only when the woman is in good health condition (Barbara 115). This implies that if she has hypertension issues, medical practioners will not allow her to practice.
Step 7: Reflection
Reflecting on my thought process, I learnt that responsibility is a virtue in athletics. This applies in case study and it implies that women who are irresponsible by making bad decisions do not act in a moral way. For instance in this case, a pregnant woman takes risk of engaging in athletics without the knowledge that she could lose the baby. To improve on the problem solving process, I could incorporate more arguments and alternatives to central issue to find a relevant solution.
Barbara, Lenice. Women in sport. Malden, MA: Blackwell Science, 2000. Print.
Morgan, William. Ethics in sport. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics, 2001. Print.
Wyne, Robert. Ethics of sport and athletics: theory, issues, and application. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2009. Print.
Zedd, Robert. Fair play the ethics of sport. 3rd ed. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 2010. Print.
Fred Ho highly promoted capitalism in art with his main philosophy pointing at making art that is defiance of class or color. According to him, this was the only possible way in which a revolutionary art could be achieved where there is no confusion or sensitization in regards to color or race. As an artist, Ho favored imaginative realism that would bring color in the world of music. He believed that an art should fill people with love since this is the only way in which an ultimate society which is transformed can be achieved. When an art has the ability to organize people of different social classes and races together without any ties, then this is when revolution shall have been achieved. Asian American artistic production has drawn through Ho’s philosophy of making art that is political focusing its major themes on the subjects of race, culture and class and the ways in which they affect the society at large. The plays titled “Trying to Find Chinatown” and “R. A. W: Raunchy Asian Women” are perfect examples of Asian films that have expressed Ho’s philosophy in its plots making these particular art works political in nature.
A revolutionary art should inspire the defiance, class and national pride spirit because this is the only way in which it can easily resist the backward ideology and domination that the world has been having for a long period. The play “Trying to Find Chinatown” is known for its popular class settings while exploring various themes regarding different cultures that the students can understand easily. The play is set in American where the audience can identify the ways in which it defies national and cultural ideologies and spirit. Benjamin Wong, who is a Caucasian Asian American, finds himself clashing with Ronnie, who has Asian ancestry because of their identities. Each has different viewpoint on the ways in which they represent Asian American community in America but differ in ideology.
Benjamin having grown up in Kansas is proud of his ethnic background which he considers liberal since he has managed to study in Madison majoring on Asian American study. Nonetheless, his last name was given to him by Asian American people who adopted him where he acquired his ethnic identity. He hopes that since Ronnie is an Asian would give him directions to find his birth place Chinatown (YouTube 1). However, this is not the only instance when Benjamin judged Ronnie by his physical appearance and skin tone; he also did so when he mistook one of his musical instruments for a fiddle. It is important to note that though Ronnie is an Asian, he mainly covers and plays classical music and jazz which for a long time has been labeled with black Americans. It is clear that Ronnie is a revolutionary artist who is not defined by appearances and social relations to determine the kind of music that he loves or plays for people. It embodies cultural imperialism which can only be achieved by revolutionary artists like him.
On the other hand, the play “R. A. W: Raunchy Asian Women” mainly explores the stereotype that whites have about Asian women like the character Miss Saigon who is considered as suicidal and exotic virgin. Though all the characters in the play are women, who perform various arts like spoken word, dancing and music, the producer used their voices to address different political relationships that Asian women have with white American men in the country (HIDVL 1). Among the things that have been quoted to depict racial stereotype include their Asian hair which the men compare with that of white women. In summary, Ho played an important role in influencing Asian film themes to address issues that affect them in the society while at the same time using the political nature to resist the backward ideology and domination and this is evident in the plays “Trying to Find Chinatown” and “R. A. W: Raunchy Asian Women.”
“R. A. W: Raunchy Asian Women.” HIDVL, 1996. Retrieved from http://hidvl.nyu.edu/video/003808914.html
“Trying to Find Chinatown.” YouTube. 2012. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUYa3JSUuWY
Rebellion Origins of African American Music Culture
The United States is known to be the biggest exporter of entertainment in the world. Music and movies are two of the major forms of entertainment the United States distributes to the rest of the world. Both forms of entertainment are held in high regard both inside the United States itself and throughout most of the cultures of the rest of the world. Of particular interest to this paper is American music, in particular the type of music that is played by African Americans.
There exist varied theories as to the origin of African American music. Saouli recounted that music as a means of communicating between Africans slaves, since they had different cultures and spoke different languages (1). Saouli’s paper further argues that the music evolved in response to social, economic and racial issues that African Americans faced to various forms like jazz, R&B, blues, hip-hop, rock and many others. In fact, Appiah agrees that all the various forms of American music can be traced back to the period of drum playing during slavery (123). Floyd links African American music the need for cultural cohesion and spirituality among the early slaves (6). The studies seem to show that American music owes its origins not just to African Americans as people, but their removal from their society and the conditions and challenges they faced in the new land and the slavery.
At the dawn of the 17th century, the flourishing slave trade encouraged the capture of Africans and further fueled their trade. The ships took them to new lands. These Africans were from different parts of the world and hence of different cultures. It was a culture shock for them. Though physically taken away from their home lands, their bodies were in a foreign land while their minds still remained at home. Some of their original cultures were preserved in the popular songs they brought with them. A cultural evolution took place-there was a fusion of cultures. Africans were starting to identify themselves as African Americans.
Music developed in the harsh conditions of slavery that followed their arrival in America. The slaves used music as form of rebellion. Besides being a protest to enslavement, music also it they used music as reminder of and a store of their African heritage. The twin competing use of music saw to the evolution and development of varies socioculturally rich music.
The uprising role of music played a bigger role in its evolution and development than the role of keeping and preserving the Africans’ cultural heritage. In the traditional African societies, drums were used for communication. Messages were disseminated in rhythms and beats which could be deciphered by those for whom the message was meant. Africans knew what a particular rhythm and beat symbolized. This use of drums goes way back in the past before arrival of the slave capturers and traders. Most Africans could play drum, some of them were among the slaves that were captured. The slaves used the same technique of transmission of information by drumbeating to communicate among themselves and express their disapproval of the harsh conditions of slavery they were being put through (Friedman 6).
It took long for the slave owners and slave traders realize that what they heard was not merely music. From then onwards, African Americans were forbidden from playing drums. The drums were confiscated and those found in possession of drums faced punishment. This move by the slave owners and slave traders disoriented the cultural ties among the Africans that had been developing and becoming stronger with time. Their cultures were being taken away from them.
In their refusal to let go of music, they resorted to playing music in forms that did not require the drums that had been taken away from them. Anything that could contribute to rhythm making, they picked it up. Among them were household equipments. European instruments were not spared either. The whites thought that by taking away drums from the Africans would stop the music. It seems they had only taken away the instrument-the drum was still in possession of African Americans. The sounds of the drums were still at large. The sounds of the drums were mimicked in vocal rhythms and styles. They were so skilled as to be able to vocally replicate the sound of multiple drums. African sounds and rhythms had secured new homes in new instruments. This was a rebirth of the role of music in the lives of the African as had been played with the drums.
As time went on, the African Americans learnt the English language, the consequence of which was that the voice could not only mimic drums; it could also compose lyrics. Owing to the accessibility of the English language to the slave owners and slave traders, the lyrics composed by the Africans were so coded that they could only be understood by fellow Africans. The white Americans were now being confronted with a new form of rebellion, one that could not take away.
In addition to singing, African Americans parodied the style of dance that was done by their slave owners; their mockery of the white dances were masqueraded as normal dancing, even in the sight of the slave owners they were mocking. The white people who noticed it mistook it for an inability of Africans to dance, and liked it for that reason.
A new form of music was born into the African American community that came to be known as the African American spiritual. It was actually advocated by the slave owners, on the ground that, they thought, it was a sign of conversion from the tradition African religions to Christianity. They did not have any problems with Africans singing praises and worship to God. They encouraged it, on the contrary. Unknown to the slave owners was the fact that African Americans incorporated undertones in their singing that served as a vessel passing of messages about escape directions, solidarity and rebellion. All that the slave owners thought was the African Americans’ yearning to be within proximity to God.
At the core of the spirituality of African Americans was the theme of escape from enslavement and pursuit of freedom. African Americans’ concept of freedom was tactfully incorporated into spiritual music. Spiritual music became its channel of transmission and dissemination. Black preachers discovered the potential of music assemble and unite people, and so exploited it to garner power from the multitudes. The possibility of emancipation was becoming higher. Upon realizing what was actually going on behind the scenes, restrictions on the assembly of African Americans for no purpose were put in place. The African American music was restricted from the public throughout most of the slavery period. It was constrained to slave quarters and, occasionally, entertainment of slave owners and their guests.
In the infancy of the 19th century, some white people started mimicking the dance and singing of African Americans. These racist shows gained popularity with the Americans. When African Americans were allowed to the performance, something that was originally meant to ridicule them, they did it better than the whites had crudely portrayed them. As a result, they earned notoriety. The audiences preferred them. Finally, the availability of public exposure meant that these first performers were had pioneered a wave of African American music.
Towards the end of the 19th century, ragtime came into the scene and gained not only attention but popularity also. Playing on the piano, they amalgamated and reconciled the harmonics of the white music with the syncopation of the African-American syncopation, creating the starting point for defined style. This evolution carried on blues, a new variant of the African American music.
The blues grew out of disillusion of the African Americans as a result of disenfranchisement and denial of full equality to African Americans after the civil war. Most of lyrics of the songs focused on these subjects they were not explicit- they were culturally coded. One needed to be familiar with the African American society and culture to understand what they actually mean. In the rebuilding years that followed, blues musicians started to express their concerns openly. The cultural coding of the blues music was adopted as the music’s language. Jazz is developed around the same time as blues.
The United State’s entry into World War II saw to the drafting of young and skilled labor into the army, leaving opportunities and vacancies for the less skilled African Americans left behind to fill. Furthermore, some young black women were employed to entertain the army. With the employment, the African Americans gained confidence in themselves. Consequently, a wave of young African American musicians who could not be drafted into the army because of their age swept into the New York jazz scene.
Towards the end of the world war, there appeared a split in the music scene. On one hand there was a group of musicians who saw the opportunity to profit from the commercial demand African American music; on the other hand were those who sought to use music as a tool for personal expression and they also wanted to innovate it. The former incorporated vocal lines into urban blues, giving rise to the form of music called rhythm and blues or R&B. R&B later became the precursor to funk, disco and rock and roll. The latter gave rise to a myriad of other styles.
At the end of world war, solders returned home to retake the positions that had been filled by African Americans when they left for the war. This once created social and civil unrest. The African Americans once more felt looked down upon. There was a resort to spirituality music in search of patience and patience. The church had always involved with the advocating for civil rights. The turns of events revived the spiritual songs. Only this time the lyrics openly asked God to relieve African Americans from oppression.
The journey of African American music has been long and tough, from the time of slavery to through to this point in time. The African American music started as a rebellion against oppression during the enslavement era, and has gone on to express the disapproval of social injustice and denial of civil rights. The spirituals sang in the church also share the same origin as other forms of African American music. Today, social and civil reformation having taken place, the music is fully entertainment rather, rather than the rebellion and expression of oppression, the reasons to which they owe their evolution and development.
Appiah, Anthony. Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience.
Oxford [u.a.: Oxford Univ. Press, n.d.. Print.
Floyd, Samuel A. The Power of Black Music: Interpreting Its History from Africa to the United States. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995. Print.
Friedman, Jonathan C. “The Routledge History Of Social Protest In Popular Music Author:
Jonathan C. Friedman, Publisher: Routledge Pages: 336 Pu.” (2013): 336.
Saouli, Halima. “The Origins and Development of the Africo-American Music.” (2014).
Southern, Eileen. The music of black Americans: A history. WW Norton & Company, 1997.
Survival as an Element of Canadian Culture
Multiculturalism is one of the most common identifiers of the Canadian nation. Unlike other nations such as Europe, Canada has established effective cultural values and identities which encourage cohesion and unity among diverse cultural formations. Other nations have adopted negative perceptions of multiculturalism entailing cultural sabotage and polarization, which were not initially evident in the Canadian context (Banting and Kymlicka 46). However, the idea of multiculturalism is constantly being built on isolationist as well as stereotypical assumptions about each of the ethnic groups in the country. The evidence of the same is taken to imply that Canada is moving in the footsteps of Europe. Due to the assumption of the direction of Canada’s movement relative to Europe, the country is under constant scrutiny to determine whether the same segregation, prejudice and polarization activities experienced in Europe have started being experienced in Canada. The outcome of such scrutiny is that most of the cultures of the country are constantly under the pressure to survive amidst a dynamic cultural background (Banting and Kymlicka 46). The concept of multiculturalism and the associated polarization brings about the need for segregation in the same measure as experienced in Europe. On the contrary, it has resulted in the realization of the inherent need for survival and can be cited as the driver of the survival theme in Canadian culture.
Survival in Canadian Culture
Understanding the concept of survival in explaining the Canadian culture can be a difficult challenge. This is because the survival is considered one of the thematic guides in Canadian literatures in regards to cultural exploration. Individuals in the country identify themselves collectively with their different ethnic cultures while positioning themselves within the triangulations of culture and collective identities. According to Violini (5), the Canadian landscape itself, in its diversity, mirrors the diversity of the people in the country. The citizens are enclosed within the concepts of diverse mythological cultures. The assortment of cultures to be chosen from, the intertwined cultural differences and the massive immigrant populations make it difficult to establish a single thematic perception that can effectively describe all Canadians. With the variety of cultures demanding individual attention, Canadians resort to the identifying themselves with close knit cultural relations. Each cultural group works towards ensuring it is not assimilated by others. Survival thus becomes the most reasonable thematic descriptor of Canada, which gives the country the intended unity.
Survival is seen as a theme not only in Canadian literature but also in the conduct of various cultural groups. In the theme of survival, the cultural truth is continuously seen to be prevalent in the contemporary Canadian culture. The theme of survival not only describes the inherent desire of each cultural group to be recognized but also acts as a bridge between the different cultural groups in the country. The aboriginals have different survival stories and techniques from the White Canadians as well as from other cultural and ethnic factions in the country. While each understands the differences between their cultures, they all struggle to stand against the concept of acculturation, particularly with respect to the impacts of the colonial era. Canada has established itself under the survival theme in terms of describing conditions experienced by different cultural groups in the country. Presently, the development of the modernized nation- state following colonization has led to the distinction of small, potential communities for assimilation and larger communities which can assimilate others.
The Aboriginal Canadians form the best example in the exploration of the survival theme in Canada. The community, initially recognized by the distinctive practices with regards to self defense and economic activity, has continued to be associated with distinctive clothing, language and physical features. Such external factors characterize their consideration by others, a factor which has to be rectified in most cases to achieve individual identity. While the collective people have a shared history of genocide, poverty, disenfranchisement and collective trauma among many past experiences, they still have individual identities separate from the collective perception (Frideres 321). The perception of the community as a small cultural groups results in the loss of individual identity and the assumption of potential assimilation by larger cultural entities. In such a case, the theme of survival emerges not only in the preservation of the collective identity but also in the preservation of individual identities. The community and the members thereof have to develop a distinctive identity separate from the description accorded to them by others. In most cases, maintaining an independent description proves to be challenging as the community members respond more to external characterizations.
At the same time, the Aboriginals have made massive efforts towards ensuring cultural survival not only through perseveration of their cultural practices in their indigenous settings but also exposing the culture to large urban settings. The community recognizes the need for interconnection among all things and all people, particularly through communal practices of spirituality and religion (Frideres 323). The community has to maintain variants of its cultural practices yet maintain a world view of the culture and the elements in it. Because of such need for a world view, the community is under constant strain, struggling with the pressure towards assimilation by larger communities versus the community forces and the cultural traditions of the aboriginal identity (Frideres 324).
In other communities, the theme of survival is viewed not only as a unifying element of Canadian literature but also of the diverse cultural identities in Canada. Each of the ethnic groups in the country had different struggles and different challenges (Alter 159). At the core of Canadian culture, the theme of survival exemplifies the efforts made different native and non-native communities in ensuring positive progress. For the early settlers, the theme of survival was majorly developed in the early years where the communities had to stand against a plethora of hostile natives and natural elements. On the other hand, the French Canada had to survival the unexpected increase of the English Canada to be able to ensure cultural sustainability is achieved. Their numbers notwithstanding, the English Canada also has to constantly remain strong against and populous and similarly strong neighbor, the United States (Alter 159). The implications of such interactions are that each of these groups is constantly striving to maintain its unadulterated cultural practices. To a large extent, this has not been possible, partially due to the acculturation that resulted from colonial powers and also due to the modernization effects in Canada and beyond.
The experiences of different Canadian communities and cultures provide a good example of how survival is part of culture. Not only do different communities strive to stand amidst other conflicting cultures, but they also share in their national efforts to sustain the Canadian culture. The implication is a general unification in the theme of survival.
Alter, Grit. Inter and trans-cultural learning in the context of Canadian young adult fiction. LIT Verlag Munster, 2015. Retrieved from www.books.google.co.ke/books?id=Whq5CgAAQBAJ&pg=PA159&lpg=PA159&dq=Survival+as+an+element+of+Canadian+identity&source=bl&ots=LXxDc2b2ic&sig=ScUnlJYEQj_5qWHYoUSLOf_7-jA&hl=en&sa=X&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=Survival%20as%20an%20element%20of%20Canadian%20identity&f=false
Banting, Keith and Kymlicka, Will. Canadian multiculturalism: Global anxieties and local debates. British Journal of Canadian Studies, vol. 23, 1(2010): 43- 72. Retrieved from www.post.queensu.ca/~bantingk/Canadian_Multiculturalism.pdf
Frideres, James. Aboriginal identity in the Canadian context. The Canadian Journal of Native Studies, vol. XXVIII, 2 (2008): 313- 342. Retrieved from www3.brandonu.ca/cjns/28.2/05Frideres.pdf
Violini, Cara. Hundreds and thousands: Diversifying themes in Canadian literature through Emily Carr’s mythographies. Master’s Thesis – Athabasca University. 2011. Retrieved from www.dtpr.lib.athabascau.ca/action/download.php?filename=mais/CaraVioliniProject.pdf