Author Archives: trost98

Exploitation

Exploitation is defined as the act of employing resources to the greatest advantage. Hall says that men have developed almost any type of extension in order to be able to exploit any resource that is available to them. Exploitation is generally done due several reasons. Rapid increase on population leads to a greater demand of natural resources. Cultures of consumerism also lead to the exploitation of natural resources.

Exploitation of natural resources have some great disadvantages for the environment. Some disadvantages include: deforestation, desertification, soil erosion, green house gas increase, etc. In Panama people do a lot of campaigns to stop the exploitation of natural resources. I have never participated in any though. However, I had several people in my school that did projects about helping the environment. Panama has the nickname of “el pulmon de America” (the lung of America), so I can pretty safely say that there isn’t really much deforestation going here.

En conclusion, exploitation is something that is really dangerous, but very necessary. However, people are sometimes careless in their way of exploiting resources. For example, when people cut trees they don’t plant new ones. The consumerism culture should lower a bit, maybe then there wouldn’t be as much exploitation.deforestation-2

 

Defense

Defense is clearly important if we want to establish peace and security in a nation. As Hall said it, we need to defend ourselves from animals and humans alike. religion, law-enforcement, and medicine are the main defensive techniques made by man. Religion helps with the dangers withing the individual, even though I would rather go to some psychologist. Law-enforcement deals with criminals and other societies that impose a threat. Medicine deals with diseases.

Here in Panama our defense is rather poor actually. We don’t have any advanced army. The police may look serious at times, but most of the time they are just doing it to get bribed. Religion seems to be a very important part of Panama, there are churches everywhere in the city and they get full all the time. Public medicine in panama sucks, the system is horrible, and people are sometimes left waiting for months in order to get some important surgery. Also medicines have been found poisoned more than once. However, the private medicine sector is a lot better and a lot cheaper than in countries like USA.

In conclusion, the defense in Panama is alright. The law-enforcement seems to be getting better with time. The one that worries me is medicine. The public medicine of Panama is really weak, but I don’t really use it, so I don’t complain much about it. en_0309_DAgata_480x360

Play

Play (aka Recreation) is a very important factor for humans, as the old proverb says “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”. This means that without time off from work, a person will become bored. It is important to take some rest from time to time in order to enjoy life. I don’t really think there is a culture that actually doesn’t take some free time to do other stuff other than work. Though there obviously are some other cultures that take work more seriously.

In Panama a lot of the recreation comes from clubs. Even though I don’t really enjoy that. Another big part comes from sports. However, my recreation mainly comes from going out with friends to the mall, not to shop though. We just sort of walk around aimlessly while talking. Beaches are also very important in Panama, During long weekends and holidays the people from the city tend to move to the beaches that are outside of the city. This tends to generate a lot of income to the little towns that are out of the city.

In conclusion, recreation is very important for humans. Life would be extremely boring without the time to do something other than working. Recreation is also very important for some countries, since it represents a valuable source of income. Countries like Panama actually generate a lot of income through tourism, so it is important to have recreational activities for the tourists.

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Learning

Learning is the acquisition of new knowledge. As humans our main way of teaching children about general knowledge is by sending them to schools. I don’t think there is really a lot of variation around the world, children seem to always be sent to some education center. Education is extremely important for the development of a country. Like the famous quote that says that the children of today are the something important of tomorrow, I can’t remember it very well.

Anyway, the education in Panama is horrible, at least the public one. Not only are the classes  done poorly, but there always seems to be some incident occurring that damages schools for days. For example: water is gone, electricity is gone, some random act of vandalism occurs, or/and some weird glass fiber accident. Apparently an ex minister of education even got arrested for irregularly giving away the contracts that were meant to repair the glass fiber from schools.

I sadly took classes for a year at the Universidad Technologica de Panama (Technological University of Panama, keyword being “Technological”). Anyway, I had a very irregular schedule, and never really learned anything. I believe I even went stupider in that year. My professors tend to miss a lot, sometimes the university would close out of nowhere. Also, the university had a system that was practically designed to make its students fail, or drop off. Another time, I actually had to teach the children of “Loma Macano”, which is located in Some-Mountain-I-Dunno-Where in the middle of Who-Knows-Where, my cellphone reception clearly didn’t know where was I. The school was just 3 rooms, no air conditioner, and not even a bathroom. Also, the children were pretty dumb, to not use a harsher word. In conclusion, the education in Panama sucks.

Temporality

Temporality has to do with everything related to time. As Hall mentioned, life is full of cycles and rhythms. It can be said that all people have a certain schedule, which makes up a great percentage of a person’s way of living. Also, any disruption to a person’s way of life creates stress. Different cultures may contain different calendars and/or clock time. However, different cultures also tend to be different in the way that they treat time.

Panamanians have the stereotype of being extremely careless about time. However, that’s obviously not the case for everyone, but for a big majority it is. Also, living in a country like this actually affects after a while and I can safely say that I don’t really care that much about time. I might be always on time for some things, but if I get late for something I won’t really get stressed a lot by it. Also, a lot of people tend to be late anyway.

In conclusion, temporality seems to be something which importance is different from person to person. However, a person living in a culture of people who don’t take time as seriously might be affected in the long run, even if that person thinks different at first. Also, people who take less importance of time tend to have less stress. I guess that technically means that Panama has a very low level of stress. Also, stress tends to produce sickness. So I guess that also means that Panama is a very healthy country, or at least it would be if its healthcare didn’t suck so much.

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Territoriality

Territoriality is a behavior pattern in animals consisting of the occupation and defense of a territory. As animals we also experience the necessity of defending our territory. This is demonstrated as we feel pressure when some stranger stands close to us. People need their personal space or they will feel awkward and invaded. The territory doesn’t necessarily needs to be physical, there is also metaphorical space, such as internet accounts. For example: Nobody really lends a Facebook account to someone else.

People say that in Panama everyone invades the personal space of other people and they talk to close. I can’t really see it that way. Everything just feels natural to me. Except maybe while driving. Cars do sort of invade my personal space there and I get extremely paranoid sometimes, but that’s most of the time the fault of the streets that are badly designed. There might be some other cases in which I actually feel that my personal space is being invade, but that’s mainly when there is someone awkwardly hugging me when I just expect a handshake, but I mainly receive that from people who aren’t even from Panama. However, I can’t really complain much about people being friendly with me. I don’t really think there is anything wrong about someone being friendly, at most it is just surprising.

In conclusion, territoriality really differs a lot from culture to culture. Crossing someone’s personal space can be considered either something intimidating or friendly. Most of the time people just feel awkward when someone they don’t know crosses their personal space. Maybe eliminating this barrier actually makes people friendly and more open as sometimes demonstrated by another countries.

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Sexuality

Now this is a topic that is a bit of a taboo. Adding the fact that I’m writing this on the internet, where everyone can see it, makes it even more awkward, but I digress. Sexuality is how people reproduce. However, it also includes the gender roles that are assigned to people. Many people will also see the topic of sexuality as a taboo, which makes it really difficult to talk about sometimes.

The gender roles can tell a lot about the culture of different countries. In the modern world we live in gender roles barriers have been almost completely destroyed. In Panama women can have all the jobs positions that men have, and men can also have the same job positions that women have. However, this is not the case for other countries. For example: In Iraq women aren’t really able to have the same jobs as men do. Also, as Hal mentioned, some of the actions that men do in one country won’t be considered proper in another country. For example: the men in Iran read poetry and hold their hands, while the women are cold and do things that would associated with men from USA.

In conclusion, sexuality is a very delicate topic. As already demonstrated, gender roles assigned to men and women vary greatly around the world. However, the gender roles seem to be becoming more open over time, as demonstrated by the fact that women can now work on professions that were considered before to be only male exclusive.gender

Subsistence

Subsistence is the minimum requirements for a human being to exist. Now taking in consideration Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, the most things a human needs to survive are: breathing, food, water, sex, sleep, homeostasis, and excretion. Maslow's_Hierarchy_of_Needs.svg

Even though, probably a person that can only fulfill the basic physiological level is probably going to have a very miserable life.

Also as Hal mentions, food is very important and it can tell us a lot about the culture of a country. I do think that food can tell us a lot about a country, specially since I can’t define a country by the way people do homeostasis. For example: Panama is very multicultural, so the cuisine contains a bit of everything. USA has a horrible stereotype of being filled with fat people, this is mainly due to another stereotype about quantity and quality of the food they serve.

In conclusion, from all the basic things a human being needs, the one that can be analyzed the most would be food. Some people say that shelter is actually a necessary thing for people to survive, but I don’t think that’s really true. I’ve seen hobos sleeping in a sidewalk, they don’t need any shelter to survive. Besides, that’s in the second level of the hierarchy of needs, right on top of the most basic ones.

Association

Association is when 2 or more individuals interact in order to reach a particular goal. Maybe the individuals have different goals, but they need the interaction in order to achieve their goals. Sort of like me writing this post so that I can reach the goal of having a nice grade. I don’t really think association would change a lot in different parts of the world. People will always be looking for some certain specific goal.

I remember that during last semester I had introduction to psychology. My professor of psychology said that humans will always engage in an interaction seeking a particular goal. I guess that makes sense, I can’t really think of why would I ever need to talk to someone if I don’t really have the need to talk. The most pointless I can ever get is when I’m bored and I talk to someone, but even there my goal is just to kill time. In other terms, association is basically an specific form of causality which deals with interactions. Causality being a philosophical term for basically just cause and effect. The cause being wanting to accomplish a goal, the effect being the interaction.

In conclusion, we live in a world with a system that is designed to concentrate in people’s needs. People that are shunned away by society are the ones who can’t really bring any sort of talents that would help others accomplish their goals. Sounds really harsh, but it makes sense. People hate leeches, if someone doesn’t have any redeeming quality, then the person will probably just be ignored. This is done because people want to accomplish their own goals and that person might present him/her-self as an obstacle or as an annoyance.

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Interaction

As human beings communication is vital for our survival. Thus we need to interact with other people. Interacting with others is not only vital, but it also increases our knowledge and helps us grow as a person. Since the last decade, people have changed a lot about how they interact with each other. Now people use cellphones and other technological tools to never actually lose contact of the people that they are interested.

Also a person might interact differently with different individuals. For example: If I’m ever writing to someone important, my writing will be really formal. However if I’m writing to some friend, my writing would be a bit broken. I wouldn’t care about punctuation, sentence structure, and I would probably add a bunch of emoticons, such as “:D”. Now that I think about it, humans just interact with each other in the best way they assume is appropriate. For example: No one ever told me that I had to be extremely serious with this blog, I just sort of guessed it on my own. I do recall during last semester my professional speaking class. At first I started my speeches being extremely serious. This was due to the fact that it was my professional speaking class, the key word being “professional”. I assumed that all my speeches had to be serious, but being serious backfired heavily. So I began to change my way of interacting with the audience into a more non-serious way, and that really worked very well for me in the end.

In conclusion, interaction is vital for human beings, due to technological advances it is possible to interact in many different ways that weren’t possible before, we change our way of interacting based on the individual we are going to interact, and most of the time we just assume which would be the best way of interacting with another person. interaction