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Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

What are some of the ways you resist cultural expectations?

Asked by Simone_De_Beauvoir (38932points) July 10th, 2009

It could be something small like not wearing make up if you identify as a woman or home schooling your kids or marrying outside your race (I’m making assumptions that these are cultural expectations, they don’t have to be, for you)...

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32 Answers

Saturated_Brain's avatar

Well you’ve already resisted cultural expectations by your phrasing of ‘identity as a woman’ =)

And yes, I do resist cultural expectations in my own small way. Like not being a teen who is in touch with all the latest music (although I am slowly changing on that front).

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Saturated_Brain and what statement does not being in touch with the latest music make, in your opinion?

Nially_Bob's avatar

It depends upon how one defines ‘resist’. My immediate thoughts (when attempting to answer the question) are drawn to my beliefs regarding nationality and nationalism as they definitely differ from the norm but I do not generally make a point of informing people of these beliefs or protesting on their behalf which leads me to wonder if merely believing them is, in itself, a form of resistance.

Saturated_Brain's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir That as a teenager I’m supposed to listen to the latest music or else I’m not hip and cool and am horribly old-fashioned

Strangely enough I get some satisfaction out of knowing that I’m not just like one of the crowd. Even if it’s only musically speaking.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Saturated_Brain and why do you think that is

hug_of_war's avatar

I don’t wear make-up except on rare occasion well because I don’t feel I should have to in order to be beautiful or accepted or whatever. I am not connected to my phone 24/7 because I don’t believe I need to be available at every possible moment, and that’s it’s a good thing to not always be connected to technology.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Nially_Bob I probably, actually, have the same views as you on nationality? care to share those views to see if I’m right?

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@hug_of_war that’s great about being disconnected from technology

Saturated_Brain's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Why? Why do I think I get satisfaction out of standing out? Well… I know it’s because I want to be different. As for an explanation…. Well…. That’s kinda long and complicated… In fact, I myself am not so sure, but I do have my ideas…

Nially_Bob's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir I would be happy to, I would have gone into greater detail previously had it not been for the potentially offensive nature of said opinions. Well, c├ęst la vie.
I believe that a persons nationality is completely irrelevant to their identity or accomplishments. If someone mentions that they are, for example, Austrian, though I will take such into account (and likely be interested to find out if they grew up in Austria and the specifities of such a story) I feel in no way different about who the person is or what they have done. If they are proud of their nationality I will often assume that they are either proud of being associated with principles, creations or achievements that they played no part in creating or are literally proud of being born on a piece of terrain which they deem special without reasonable justification. I do not believe ‘America’ created the declaration of independance, nor that ‘England’ created the magna carta or that ‘Germany’ raised Einstein. People created those documents, Einstein was raised by his parents and loved ones and anyone who tries to associate themselves with such things is creating a connection that does not exist and likely never will.
I do not contend that the culture a person grows up amongst will affect the fashion in which they develop, to do so would be foolish given the evidence, but a culture is not something to be proud of, it is something to be thankful for as it has created who you are today (about on par with several hundred other factors which are often granted little gratitude) but proud? Proud to be part of something you have not created? Proud to be associated with it? (rather analogous to someone who talks constantly about a famous friend they have. Associated but largely unconnected to the friends success). No; this is irrational.
As a minor addition I also strongly dislike how seemingly little attention is given to the negative affects of nationalism.
It is for these reasons that I have no care for what nationality I or any other person should be outside of curiosity to learn about the cultures and international differences further. I attempt to be respectful (mostly by keeping such opinions to myself unless necessary) but when your perspectives on a matter are this “extreme” it’s difficult to not cause offence.
One more statement I would like to make (should anyone present a similar inquiry). Someone once questioned as to whether I would “fight for my country” if needs be. My answer is no, if the society I live in were to be in a position of war I would not fight for my country, I would fight for the people I love and the innocents that could die should such a fight not be resolved quickly. I would do this just as I would gladly fight in defence of the US, French, South African, Australian and Norwegian societies (amongst others) as I know and care very much about people who live in these places also. I would not fight for land nor ideals as there is plenty of land to stand on and my ideals are not designated by a government or society.
I hope that offers you a better insight into my perspective on the matter Simone. If you have any questions feel free to ask :)

jamielynn2328's avatar

I also do not wear makeup unless I am in a wedding. I don’t know if it is a resistance of cultural expectations though. I know I don’t need it to be beautiful, and although I don’t have a problem with makeup, I don’t like that someone feel they are unattractive without painting their face. It is a personal decision, I don’t want to waste my time on it.

I don’t fit into the typical “mom” category either. I am not the PTA mother, or the playground mom. I won’t ever join that race to compete with other mom’s as to who can be the best Good Housekeeping type of mom.

Nimis's avatar

I don’t wear makeup—unless I’m in a wedding. (Good clause, jamielynn.) And my ears aren’t pierced.

Not exactly resisted, so much as not terribly interested. Resisted seems to imply some outside pressure or inner compulsion. While those may exist for the population as a whole, they really weren’t an issue for me.

prude's avatar

well, for me, I am resisting marriage. he brought it up again, trying to make it sound expensive and a hassle, think it will work?
don’t wanna get married.
afraid to get married.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@prude no no, you know how I feel about your partner, don’t get married

Nimis's avatar

A recent question reminded me that I don’t really care for jewelry from Tiffany. (The little blue box does not elicit a Pavlovian response.) It seems to be the go-to place for a lot of guys. I’d rather have a thoughtful gift, than an expensive one.

tinyfaery's avatar

I’m a woman married to a woman.

I am a queer girl who wears dresses, heels, make-up (sometimes) and carries a purse.

I am a woman who does not want children.

I have lots of tattoos.

benjaminlevi's avatar

By acting like I am doing nothing wrong by not living up to expectations. Maybe someday it will make people realize that they don’t have to either?

syz's avatar

Don’t have babies (when you get married). I caught flack for that constantly.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Nially_Bob yes we do share these ideas

Darwin's avatar

By doing what I want to do. I drive a truck, wear jeans and sometimes dresses, usually don’t wear make up but can if I want to, and I do all the house repairs. I married outside of my race (but he was the right person for me) and quit working early to take care of him. I lift weights to stay strong and like to act in movies. I didn’t birth babies but I adopted babies.

Basically, I go where my talents and interests lead me.

prude's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir I’m trying to stall until he forgets about it for a while. I really, really do feel a sense of panic when anyone, not just him, wants to marry me. I really, really don’t want to and most likely won’t. but please don’[t be disappointed in me if I do.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@prude oh i won’t be disappointed, of course, if that’s what you really want to do

Nially_Bob's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir I felt we would. I apologise if my comment came across as more of a rant than an insight.
@Darwin You sound like a very interesting person

Saturated_Brain's avatar

Oh it has to do with the fact that I never really felt that I fit in with my peers because after transferring from a different country things just seemed so different and alien. Hence, I decided to take pride in my individuality and ‘differentness’.

That’s the short of it

Darwin's avatar

@Nially_Bob – My husband thinks so, which is what counts. My kids just think I am embarrassing.

Nially_Bob's avatar

@Darwin The former is evidence of your interesting nature while the latter is conclusive evidence. Afterall, who ever felt embarrassed to be around a ‘regular person’? You’ve got to be doing something right no?

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@Darwin, anyone who likes spiders and moves them out of harms way is A-OK in my book. Makes me wish I’d had kids so I could embarrass them, too.

Darwin's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra Well, your Evelyn sticker is embarrassing mine. Does that count for anything?

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@Darwin Hell yeah. They do know what Evelyn looks like, right?

Darwin's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebraI’m not sure they can even get past the word “Orgasmic”

mattbrowne's avatar

When we had our twins, a boy and a girl, we resisted the expectation that the boy wear blue and the girl wear pink. On occasion we deliberately switched the colors and the effect was hilarious. It was a proof that in most cases people can’t determine the gender of a 3-month-old baby when clothed. The ability to tell the genders apart comes later. When exactly? Not sure.

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