Repetition in Culture

Repetition that seems like “‘a quality of difference’ compared to what has gone before” is  a constant is one of James A. Snead’s claims in Repetition as a figure of black culture. Snead says that human culture evolves and things from the past emerge in the future as either improved or retrogress. Culture either progresses or regresses. I agree with James Snead that culture is  constantly evolving.

I found that claim interesting and it made me think about what American culture is at the present moment compared to its history. I feel that American culture is based heavily on race. The way race plays an integral part on American society has evolved. An example that comes to mind would be the evolution of slavery. Slavery was part of the American culture for hundreds of years and after it was abolished, the institution of incarceration was used to continue slavery in an evolved manner. The constitution itself states that slavery is legal if it is for punishment. Therefore I wonder how long is would take to have this practice evolve to something completely different. What must be done for racism to not play an integral part of American culture? I also wonder what kind of future would America have in terms of culture as we are headed in a direction where minorities may not be minorities any longer.

Another thought that I had when reading this text was cultures that have been destroyed due to imperialism and how those cultures were affected. Colonizers were known to force their cultures onto their colonies. This lead to many cultures not being practiced anymore. I would say the culture evolved differently than it would have if it had not been for outside intervention. A question that I have is: whether the evolution process the cultures of countries that were able to retain it despite colonization was affected by the intervention. I also ponder on what would be the implications to keep in mind for the future.

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