Posts Tagged ‘Photo Gallery’
International Women’s Day is celebrated on March 8 (this Wednesday) around the world. Learn how it’s observed in various countries from CultureGrams:
- Burkina Faso: On International Women’s Day, official celebrations are held in cities. Many Burkinabè, especially women, dress up in a fabric designed each year for the event. People also celebrate by going to bars to drink, eat, and dance.
- Kyrgyzstan: On International Women’s Day, men give gifts to the women in their lives, including grandmothers, mothers, sisters, aunts, classmates, co-workers, and wives or girlfriends.
- Mauritania: International Women’s Day is celebrated in each regional capital with a fair at which women’s cooperatives from the surrounding area display and sell their goods. A ceremony is held and includes speeches by government leaders. Many development organizations present awareness campaigns.
- Ukraine: On International Women’s Day, everyone gets the day off work. Women receive flowers and gifts, as well as household help from their husbands. Special attention is paid to mothers, and girls are congratulated as future women.
- Madagascar: International Women’s Day is celebrated across Madagascar, even in small villages. The day’s events typically include a gathering at the mayor’s office, where women’s groups perform traditional dances for the town’s officials in return for a small monetary gift. Women in the northeastern part of the island commonly wear matching blouses and lamba (long cotton wraps). They often make noise using whistles and condensed-milk cans fashioned into rattles.
CultureGrams is a great way to learn about holidays around the world. Each World and Kids edition report has a Holidays section that discusses the traditions and celebrations associated with a country’s most popular holidays. Not only can learning about a country’s holidays be fun, but it’s also an engaging way to learn about a country’s culture and gain insight into what is important to the people who celebrate the holidays.
Some holidays celebrated in other countries may sound familiar, but others may be new to you. For example, are you familiar with St. Dévote’s Day, celebrated in Monaco on 27 January? That’s this Friday! From the World Edition Monaco report Holidays section, we learn:
On 27 January, Monégasques honor St. Dévote, the patron saint of the principality. Dévote was persecuted and martyred for her faith in the fourth century. Her body was eventually buried in Monaco, and several miracles were associated with Dévote. Years later, a group of thieves tried to steal and sell Dévote’s bones, but Monégasque sailors retrieved the bones and set fire to the thieves’ boats. On this holiday, the prince or a member of the royal family sets fire to an old boat in the port to commemorate the rescue of the bones.
Not only can you read about St. Dévote’s Day on CultureGrams, but you can also find photos of the celebration in our Photo Gallery so you can see what the celebration is like:
Hola from Colombia, the country I just arrived in and where I’ll be living with my family for the summer. We are currently in the Caribbean city of Cartagena. It has long been a tourist destination within the country and is increasingly attracting visitors from around the world as well. This is especially true of the walled old city (where we live), which is a UNESCO heritage site, and the nearby Miami-style strip of hotels and shopping centers that make up the Bocagrande neighborhood.
It would be easy to never break out of the tourist bubble that is this area, but, CultureGrams editor that I am, I’m of course interested in local culture and the everyday life patterns of the people who live in the vast and much poorer neighborhoods that make up the rest of the city.
And so it was that one of the first places we went in our new hometown was Bazurto Market, a place so local that the taxi drivers who took us there asked us again and again why exactly we had chosen that destination (especially when there is a nice mall just a few blocks away!).
Markets are a common subject of photos and videos in CultureGrams and for good reason: they contain a wealth of information about a place. They of course reveal what foods and goods people most commonly use and what they pay for them. But they can also illuminate family dynamics (Are children manning the stalls? Are they with their parents? Are they working on homework at the same time?), services rendered (Do people commonly have clothes custom made by tailors? Are construction workers available for hire?), and a population’s resourcefulness (What kinds of used parts are for sale? What commercial goods are replicated and produced by hand?). Even the arrangement of goods often has an artistic pattern that is unique to a place.
So enjoy some images from El Mercado Bazurto before they make their way into the Colombia CultureGrams photo collection and be sure to check out the local market in the next country you visit!
Bored with your screensaver? Download a new one here for free! This collection of screensaver images highlights the focus on people that CultureGrams reports offer. With 24 carefully selected photos from the Americas, Africa, Asia, Oceania, and Europe, you can go on a world tour from your desk. Scroll down for directions on how to install your screensaver collection.
To install your screensaver:
1. Download the zipped file. Open it and save the images to a new folder.
2. For Windows (XP and Vista), right click on your desktop, select Properties, click on the Screen Saver tab, and select “My Pictures Slideshow” from the drop-down menu there. Then click on the Settings button next to that drop-down menu and use the Browse button to select the folder of screensaver images you saved in step 1. You’re done!
3. For Mac OS X, launch System Preferences, click on Desktop & Screensaver, click on the Screensaver tab, select the + button near the bottom of the screensaver list, Select “Add Folder of Pictures,” navigate to the folder you created in step 1. You’re done!
Have photos of the world you would like to see incorporated into CultureGrams? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for details on how to submit them!
On Memorial Day, the last Monday of May, we commemorate the men and women who have paid the ultimate price while engaged in active military service. Originally, the holiday was called Decoration Day. It was intended to honor the soldiers who died during the Civil War. But now on Memorial Day, we remember all the men and women who have given their lives while serving in the U.S. military. However, the United States isn’t the only country to pay tribute to their war dead. Below are examples of war memorials in four other countries.
See these and other photos of war memorials in the CultureGrams photo gallery.
We would not be able to maintain CultureGrams’ focus on daily life across the world without the individual contributors we rely on to provide unique cultural content. And the contributor who has submitted the most multimedia to the site—including over 2,000 photos of some 40 countries—is Salym Fayad.
CultureGrams editors work to solicit photos and videos that avoid tourist sites and news events and instead reveal the details that make up the fabric of a culture. Finding such materials for Africa is especially challenging, since, as Salym points out, Western media often portray Africa as a single region plagued by famine and violence instead of the complex, culturally rich continent of over 50 countries that it is.
Having traveled to and photographed nearly half of those countries, Salym is an expert at capturing elements of culture that make each place unique, including the way people dress, their gestures, personalities, interactions, and environments.
Though some formal training and an artistic eye help, his photographic success rests on something more fundamental: he is genuinely interested in people and shows it. Before taking pictures, he tries to create an atmosphere of comfort and trust, which often involves mingling with people for a while before he starts shooting and showing them the photos as he goes. His trips are also well researched ahead of time so that he has an understanding of the places he visits and an idea of what to look for.
Based in South Africa but a nomad by nature, Salym has also traveled extensively in Latin America and Europe and has recently started exploring Asia. The route to his current profession has been nomadic as well. He was educated in literature and philosophy in his native Colombia and worked at jobs like waiting tables and DJing before beginning to cover Sub-Saharan Africa as a freelance journalist.
In addition to his photography work (which also includes CultureGrams video), Salym regularly contributes articles on topics with cultural dimensions to several Latin American publications and facilitates musical exchanges between Colombia and South Africa.
Salym’s work can be consuming, but that’s a good thing because it combines those things he loves most: travelling, music, people, Africa, and—luckily for CultureGrams—taking pictures.
As any world traveler can tell you, outdoor and informal markets can be found in just about every country of the world. Markets provide locals a place to buy, sell, and exchange goods, and they often attract foreign visitors as well. Of course markets vary greatly too, from the type of food sold to the design of product displays to bargaining techniques–each market has its own look, feel, and smells.
The following photos are from the CultureGrams photo gallery.
Can you guess where each photo was taken?
We’ve posted the answers in the comments section of this post. Check them out and tell us how well you did!
Have you explored the CultureGrams World and Kids edition photo gallery? The gallery can be accessed via the “Photos” link in the top navigation bar from the region- and country-specific pages, as well as by a link on the right-hand margin of each country report. Did you know that you can search the photo gallery for specific terms?
To search for photos, find the search bar at the top of any page in the photo gallery and enter the search term. For instance, searching for ‘toy‘ will bring up thumbnail pictures of children from a variety of countries playing with their toys. Click on a thumbnail to see the full-sized photo.
Searching through the photo gallery makes cross-cultural comparisons easier, as the results for ‘toy’ shows. Students and teachers can see what toys, or many other terms, are like in different cultures. The photos can then be used to create thematic slideshows for a class presentation, or as part of a class discussion or writing assignment on differences between cultures.
Have you used the search function in our photo gallery? What did you find? Let us know what you have searched for by leaving a comment on this blog post!
As the Christmas season approaches, it’s fun to take a look at how people around the world celebrate the holiday.
In Botswana, people attend church and celebrate through eating and drinking and visiting relatives in their home villages. There are also community efforts to share with the underprivileged. Family members do not exchange gifts, but they usually receive new clothes. Urban children enjoy meeting their cousins and learning traditional games from those living in rural areas.
In Spain, families get together on Christmas Eve and have a special dinner; traditional dishes vary according to the region. Practicing Catholics go to the Misa del Gallo(Rooster’s Mass) at midnight. Families also have a big lunch together on Christmas Day. The Day of the Three Kings (6 Jan.) is one of the most popular Christmastime celebrations. On the night of the 5th, children put out milk and cookies or sweet wine for the Three Kings and leave their shoes near the window or under the Christmas tree. In urban areas, families then watch a large parade featuring the Three Kings, which takes place after sunset; in some regions, paper lamps are carried to the parade. Children return home or wake up the next morning to find their shoes filled with presents from the Three Kings. Most families also open presents at Christmas so that children can play with their gifts during their school holidays.
In the Philippines, Catholics attend a series of Christmas masses called Simbang Gabi. From 16 December to Christmas Eve, a mass is held at dawn each morning. Many Catholics believe that if one faithfully attends Simbang Gabi, a wish will be granted. From the beginning of Simbang Gabi until Christmas Eve, children in many areas go door to door singing carols and receiving money and sweets. On Christmas Eve, urban families gather to exchange gifts and enjoy a large feast featuring pork, beef stew, casseroles, and traditional desserts like leche flan (caramel custard) and coconut salad. Rural Filipinos also enjoy a large meal, but exchanging gifts is less common. On Christmas, people light fireworks to celebrate. Windows, doors, and drawers are opened to let out the bad spirits and welcome the good. For luck, people hang 13 ripe, round fruits around their doorway, wear clothes with circular (which symbolizes eternity) prints, and carry money in their pockets.
What are some of your holiday traditions? Let us know in the Comments!
Here at CultureGrams, we are constantly adding new photos to our online galleries and slideshows that provide a glimpse into the daily lives of people from all over the world. While browsing through CultureGrams’ photos, one cannot help but begin to make comparisons between the subject’s daily life and their own. This allows for a great learning opportunity. Located at the bottom of the CultureGrams homepage, our Teaching Activities PDF features a number of activities and sample lessons that allow CultureGrams users to benefit from the product in different ways. One activity that stands out to me is our Tanzanian Life lesson, which challenges students’ analytic skills as they look through gallery and slideshow photos.
1. Have students access the photos of Tanzania in the Photo Gallery. Note: Photos from other countries will work as well.
2. Ask the students to write down their responses to the following questions about some of the photos. Have them identify some of the differences between life in Tanzania and North America. How do shopping, weddings, clothing, food, and work in Tanzania contrast with those aspects of their own families’ lives?
4. Then, have the students read the Lifestyle section of the Tanzania report in the CultureGrams Kids Edition. This section includes information on Games and Sports, Holidays, Food, Schools, and Life as a Kid. From their reading, have students identify at least three aspects of life in Tanzania that are different from their own life. Also, have them identify three similarities. Ask the students if they can find in the text any of the characteristics of Tanzania they identified in the photos.
CultureGrams learning activities are not only about sharing culture but about sharing ideas in the classroom. So, leave us a comment if this activity worked for you and your class.