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  #15 (permalink)  
Old 9th May 2006, 20:55
DistantCelt DistantCelt is offline
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What are the main, key differences, from anybody who's inhabited or studied both places?
I lived in the isles for just over eight months ( around manchester) in my pre-teens. My impression about the major difference between England and Scotland are :

1. England is cold, damp, cloudy and rolling hills. Scotland is cold, damp, cloudy and pretty picturesque moors and cliffs.

2. England is crowded. Scotland isnt.

3. Scotland seemed to be more culturally active than England ( saw a lot more 'cultural processions' on the streets of Edinborough/Glasgow than i saw anywhere else in England with perhaps London as the only exception)

4. Scottish bars ( yeah i managed to sneak in- i was precocious ) are/were a lot louder than English bars

5. Scotland has Nessy, England's got the Queen. I say the Scots got the better end of the deal here !
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Old 9th May 2006, 21:31
english-curious english-curious is offline
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Originally Posted by lordbarneth
there are hardly any differences and to go on about haggis and gaelic is just an embaressing cliche. i think that we are so similar is what bugs some scots and look for the smallest of differnces.
I'm not so sure. To my mind, it was harsher in Scotland, also the people are more passionate and maybe more charismatic, and more engaged as generalizations go. The south-east seems very blank, mild, and cold in comparison. Also they seemed to take more of an interest in other people. A little more community spirited and less lonely also. But I think the north is different to London and the SE in that way
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Old 10th May 2006, 05:15
PRgirl PRgirl is offline
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Originally Posted by english-curious
I'm not so sure. To my mind, it was harsher in Scotland, also the people are more passionate and maybe more charismatic, and more engaged as generalizations go. The south-east seems very blank, mild, and cold in comparison. Also they seemed to take more of an interest in other people. A little more community spirited and less lonely also. But I think the north is different to London and the SE in that way
PRgirl: I had no idea how Scottish people should behave, I had no real idea at all before I joined this site in 2001. What have I concluded? Compared to Puerto Ricans Scottish people are not as passionate, emotional or expressive. But instead they are witty, social and polite in general. I think they are the people with the music inside. They have a lot of emotional content....it is just subtle and reserved for more private circumstances. The Scottish are surprisingly sensitive people. They just find expressing that sensitivity embarassing. Lol. Being overly emotional is not something encouraged in the culture. It seems to be something not done. Being too direct, too passionate and too personal with people seems to be frowned upon. Maybe that is why there is so much drinking. It is a more repressed culture emotionally...yet deep inside they (as many cultures are) are very needing of emotional release of some kind.

In terms of intelligence. It would be hard to find a more intelligent group of human beings. And well educated too. Scotland is a place that produces fine conversationalists. And that is patently obvious in this site.

Their only flaw? I don't think they dance as well as we can....Lol. Not by a long shot. No matter what. But the men are so attractive!! They grow on you. And the women are strong and smart and dynamic. I think they are a fine cultural group. Totally different in style though to the Spanish influenced societies. Totally different. The Scottish have a lot of substance and not much flash. What they have to know as well is if they decide to be more flashy, they have a right to be....!!

The second flaw is the cooking. I am sorry. The haggis is not going to be a universal favorite dish that crosses international borders and makes some iconic symbol on the homo sapien brain. No it won't. It is definitely an acquired taste and not very appetizing.

I think people feel comfortable with what is familiar. And safe...and I think they should be more adventurous in the world. More of the explorer and the adventurer and try on different cultures, languages and thoughts on for size. It broadens the mind, the heart and the spirit. If most Scottish people don't see many 'black' people. They should....lol. I know it is a hard thought to realize but more than half of the human race (the majority of the human race actually) is not European at all. And most definitely not of Scottish or British origin. If there is anything I love the most about my culture, it would be just one thing...its total lack of 'sticking to your own kind' in its history...instead it is a place with a deeply rooted tradition of miscegenation with all the races of humankind, and I find that something to celebrate. I really do. When people are very mixed genetically and there is a marked presence of many 'races' in their faces and in their appearances, and the many races intermarry and socialize and interact with each other, and don't stick to what is familiar....I think it makes for an interesting future. One in which, out of the many differences, people start emphasizing what is truly substantive, in contrast to what is truly superficial. For me, what race you look like is not of any major importance...it is how you think, what values you hold dear, and how you live your life that counts. That you come from a long unbroken line of "Scottish" people or "British" people doesn't mean much in my book. But that you respect your culture, your traditions and your ways not to impose those on any other people, but because the people that taught you your values, had to suffer and had to sacrifice to make your life possible. That is what is great about history and respecting roots. Not the other stuff, the other stuff is ignorance and fear at work. Fear of the 'unknown' and the 'different'. The Scottish have nothing to fear. For I think they have all the substance necessary to see truth and distinguish it from lies. And depth from shallowness. They know the difference.

I think people are all made of the same essential things inside...they just wear different 'masks'. And people make mountains out of molehills with race most of the time. We are all the same species with the same needs basically. How we go about seeking to satisfy those needs is where cultural diversity comes into play. We all need to eat, need to sleep, need to communicate, need to get a mate, or want to get a mate, reproduce, and live with purpose and with meaning. To belong and be respected. To be heard and understood. Those are universals.

What are the big differences between the English and the Scottish? The same ones that are important between people in general. Lack of balances of power, lack of good communication, respect, love, and true fellowship. If one can feel that for every nation or culture at some level....the differences are not all that important. Are they?

Good night

PRgirl
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Last edited by PRgirl; 10th May 2006 at 05:51.
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  #18 (permalink)  
Old 10th May 2006, 20:55
gustard gustard is offline
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Originally Posted by lordbarneth
there are hardly any differences and to go on about haggis and gaelic is just an embaressing cliche. i think that we are so similar is what bugs some scots and look for the smallest of differnces.
Barneth - Gaelic is an embarassing cliche I was only joking about the Haggis anyway. Of course we are very similar but to deny differences is to deny what makes the world an interesting place. Anyway another difference is the economy. Even in England itself the south is much wealthier.

PR girl : well said.
I know Latin America is a much more racially integrated place and that races are much more integrated. In many ways perhaps Latin America will have to show an example to the rest of the world as it changes. However I notice in some countries a white elite still holds the power, though this is changing thanks to people like Evo Morales and Hugo Chavez.
I guess the tricky bit is telling the difference between wanting to preserve your culture and being afraid of difference.
For example I know of some Native American tribes who are endanger of completely dissapearing. Every time someone "marrys out" to a non native American not only is the blood thinned by half but more importantly the non-native parent does not know the culture or Language so they lose the culture and language as well. As a result many of the remaining members try only to marry withing their group.
Each culture can take a certain amount of immigration without losing its identity. It absorbs the immigration into the culture. However if there is too much immigration the culture will be lost. This happened to many Native nations in North America and certainly Aboriginal tribes in Australia. Most British people do not realise they have a culture - like fish who do not realise they are in water. However after living in Latin America I realise how distinctive British culture is - like all cultures. It would be sad if that completely dissapeared .
To me differences between people are not something to fight over - they are what makes the world and interesting and diverse place and are to be celebrated and admired. However I do not forget that we are all humans and our similarities outweigh our differences.
Mucho Gusto conoscerte !
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  #19 (permalink)  
Old 10th May 2006, 23:08
DistantCelt DistantCelt is offline
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However if there is too much immigration the culture will be lost. This happened to many Native nations in North America and certainly Aboriginal tribes in Australia. Most British people do not realise they have a culture - like fish who do not realise they are in water.
Fear not.
Look at India for the best example of unity in diversity.
It too, is a nation built on immigration - much before the British or the Turks arrived, India has had immigration for a long long time.
The Kushans, the Gujjars( Gujratis), the tibeto-burmese groups etc etc.
The entire reason India is so culturally diverse ( in simple diversity scenario, its as diverse as entire Europe combined really, if not more) is because of immigration throughout the millenias.
The fundamental difference between the Indian attitude and western attitude towards immigration is the integration factor.
In India, they have ' live and let live' policy culturally. In the west, it works on assimilatory basis - you either get absorbed or you live on the edges until your community builds up a sizeable population base.The staunch hardline Christian regimes in the west throughout the middle ages and renessance meant that independent groups were totally absorbed (such as the western Huns, Turks, Moors etc) or driven out en masse/condemned ( the awesomely diverse granadan culture in spain was demolished by the Castillians with their ridiculous and laughable notion of nobility that was so pervasive in the european cultures till perhaps 80-90 years ago, the gypsies etc. etc.).

But eventually, that will change. Xenophobia exists in the west in general and its very pronounced in some regions. But then again, the phenomenon of non-white and voluntary immigration to the west in any sizeable scale is less than hundred years old. In terms of cultural evolution, thats like a blink of an eye. Its largely because tolerance ( an essential element to have diversity) is a foreign concept (from western perspective) and rather new in the thought-stream. But eventually, it will grow and if the west abandons the assimilatory posture, it will flourish diversity-wise. Otherwise it will be like America or Canada - a lotta ethnicities but hardly any cultural diversity. But then again, Canada and USA hardly qualify as a 'culture' on their own - they are still very much an 'extension of british culture' than developing their own distinct culture.
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old 12th May 2006, 18:22
gustard gustard is offline
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Originally Posted by DistantCelt
Fear not.
Look at India for the best example of unity in diversity.
It too, is a nation built on immigration - much before the British or the Turks arrived, India has had immigration for a long long time.
The Kushans, the Gujjars( Gujratis), the tibeto-burmese groups etc etc.
The entire reason India is so culturally diverse ( in simple diversity scenario, its as diverse as entire Europe combined really, if not more) is because of immigration throughout the millenias.
The fundamental difference between the Indian attitude and western attitude towards immigration is the integration factor.
In India, they have ' live and let live' policy culturally. In the west, it works on assimilatory basis - you either get absorbed or you live on the edges until your community builds up a sizeable population base.The staunch hardline Christian regimes in the west throughout the middle ages and renessance meant that independent groups were totally absorbed (such as the western Huns, Turks, Moors etc) or driven out en masse/condemned ( the awesomely diverse granadan culture in spain was demolished by the Castillians with their ridiculous and laughable notion of nobility that was so pervasive in the european cultures till perhaps 80-90 years ago, the gypsies etc. etc.).

But eventually, that will change. Xenophobia exists in the west in general and its very pronounced in some regions. But then again, the phenomenon of non-white and voluntary immigration to the west in any sizeable scale is less than hundred years old. In terms of cultural evolution, thats like a blink of an eye. Its largely because tolerance ( an essential element to have diversity) is a foreign concept (from western perspective) and rather new in the thought-stream. But eventually, it will grow and if the west abandons the assimilatory posture, it will flourish diversity-wise. Otherwise it will be like America or Canada - a lotta ethnicities but hardly any cultural diversity. But then again, Canada and USA hardly qualify as a 'culture' on their own - they are still very much an 'extension of british culture' than developing their own distinct culture.
I think India is a bit different. Firstly its enormous and could accomodate many different peoples in the times you talk of. Secondly these migrations were all of people from more or less the same part of the world and more or less the same race.
However Britian has people from every corner of the planet arriving by the thousands and is quite small. This type of immigration is possible because of modern technology (ie modern transport) and is happening in a way that wasnt possible before.
By the way I think you misunderstood what I was saying - it is not xenophobia to want to preserve cultures its the opposite - its a love of difference. Of course its great to have al sorts of different p[eople in Britain - but when they start to outnumber the original inhabitants - which on current demographic trends will not be long - then immigration needs to be slowed down. Perhaps Britain is just repaying its colonial history. As for what you say of of cultural diversity in Britain well.... it didn't work before. Britain was a Brythonic/Gaelic culture before the Danes/Angles/Romans/Normans etc got here - whats left of their culture ? Maybe thats just because the Angles were as you say a dominator culture.
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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 12th May 2006, 18:35
english-curious english-curious is offline
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This threads gone a little intellectual and off track
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