Why explore World Cultures?
World Cultures, in their broadest sense, are the ways in which different groups of humans perceive, express, and address the needs of their lives, in context of the specific environment in which they happen to live. As with the study of the natural world, the study of world cultures provides another endless stream of questions to ponder, which link to and may motivate future studies in history, technology, foreign language & customs, and the fine and performing arts:
- What kinds of stories do the people of (pick a country) tell themselves about themselves, and about people foreign to them?
- In what forms are their stories communicated? (music, poetry, dance, drama, puppetry, novels, etc.)
- How has their culture crafted solutions to fundamental human problems, such as the need for light? shelter? warmth? cooling? food? water? transportation? social interaction? education? etc.
- How and why have their design solutions changed over time?
- What do the answers to these questions tell me about the physical and social realities of life in (pick a country)?
- What value or joy may I derive, personally, from learning about the language, customs, arts, or design solutions of a culture very different from my own?
The study of world cultures provides a rich array of topics for Quercus Academy scholars to discuss, and more opportunities to explore similarities and differences in life experience. In addition, the study of world cultures encourages scholars to think of places and ways in which they might contribute to making the world a better place for all.
Scholars explore the cultures of the world through a combination of library and on-line research, travel, experimentation, and interaction with foreign correspondents scattered about the globe.