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Catalan Culture 2004 Class Blog

martes, octubre 21, 2003

Assignment 4
Before I went to Barcelona I had expected it would be a little bit like last summer, when I went to work in Mallorca for two months. I worked in a small harbor and it was so easy to get to know people. They were open, friendly and it reminded me a lot of the Latin-American culture. I have been living in Latin-American for two years, so I am used to be in an open culture and therefore I am not a typical "cold Norwegian" anymore. I liked the openness and it did not shock me. So I thought that the culture of Cataluña was going to be as friendly as the culture of Mallorca. I was wrong.... My experience so far is that there are different cultures within Spain and the culture of Cataluña is not as open as I thought.

Of course compared to the Norwegianan culture, Cataluña-culture is very very open.... I choose to just compare the people, if not it is going to be more then two paragraphs. ( I can leave the rest to my Norwegian friends...:-)In Norway you don't greet anybody with a kiss ( your boyfriend maybe, but "strangers", are you crazy!) It is not rude to be direct and tell things directly to the other person. If we don't want to go to your party we will let you know. We don't have the Spanish "subjuntivo", the way of saying yes, but which actually means no...We are very puntual and if we tell you we will be a place at one, we will be there five to one. Why? Because it is rude to wast your time, so it is better that we wait for you, than you for us. So the syndrome of mañana does not work in the Norwegian culture. If we are not sure of the way, or place that you are asking for, we would simply say "I dont know" and dont even try to send you in a direcction we are not sure of, just to try to be helpful.

I could go on and on and on....but I wont. I would just like to say that I think there are good and bad things about each culture, so we can learn a lot from eachother. An easiest way to compare -if I am allowed to say- " my 3 cultures" are this: Mix Norwegian culture with Latin-American culture and you will get the culture of Spain. Hopefully everybody knows what I mean:-)
Norway: Cold
Spain: Warm

Have a great week!

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