I am taking a class in Spain at Suffolk University on Spanish Culture. It has quickly become one of my favorite classes. I thus combined some class notes with some personal observations and decided to put this together. Spanish people are just so interesting.
Culture- Anything produced by humans, relating to Spain or just by Spaniards in general.
- Tie your experience in Spain together
My Professor’s Advice on Spain
- Love or hate: Spain tends to provoke strong emotions from people. It will literally drive you crazy with epic stupidity.
- My observations in Spain are tainted but I can attempt to reduce my subjectivity.
- I must realize that there are people living in Spain for 600-900 euros a month. Don´t let your social groups- hang outs keep you completely isolated from the reality of peoples´ situations in Spain.
- Ethno-centrism: There are things that we overlook.
- Try to keep an open mind.
- Experience as much, that is actually Spanish as you can.
- Go to dirty bars, engage with people and learn about Spain
- Go to a place of worship
- Spanish Libraries
- Public Squares
- Dusto mayo in the Malasaña area
- But don´t go to Irish bars. (Apparently they suck.)
- Read books on Spain
- Don Cioqote
- Fortunata and Gisenta
- Catalonia by George Orwell
- Gibson on Spain (1992): Fire in the Blood
- Realize that being passionate requires variation. You need highs and lows. There must be a base level so that something may strike your passion.
- Watch the Daniboy late late Show.
- Be more British
- The British know they´re superior to everyone else… They just don´t let people know that they know that. For example: If you get in trouble, play stupid and apologize. You will most always get a sympathetic release.
Quick Notations/ Observations
- Italy and Spain are relatively similar because of their prior relationship with the Roman Empire
- Language is similar
- People do not smile to one another here.
- People stare at you. They are not embarrassed about it. They will not look away if you make eye contact.
- Parenting Styles in Spain are more relaxed. They don´t blow up at their kids. They correct their wrong doings as they happen.
- There is a phenomena-> weekdays are busier than weekends. The weekend is for sleep and catching up on other things.
- Spanish people possess an infuriating set of pre-conditioned reflexes resulting from having been deprived for centuries from security, stability and dignity.
- This leads to an automatic distrust of authority.
- Spanish people often close off their home to the view of others.
- In Spain, most of the houses have bars on the windows.
7 Deadly Sins of Spaniards
Learn to be comfortable with generalizations, and embrace them. There are exceptions to everything. Just know that you can never be certain or always correct. Do not rely on them.
¨Survival of the Fittest¨: Fit – as in Fitted. A triangle will fit into a triangle, but a square won´t fit the shape. Thus, it depends on what the environment demands.
- Generous and Incurious People… The incuriosity- 500 years of not asking too many questions… This was in order to keep your job and stay out of trouble. There was a huge emphasis in Spain placed on not asking questions. This reminds me of the fallen Arab dictatorships…
- They lack Self-consciousness
- Insensitivity to being caught/ called out.
- Relaxed…Peace-mil means of aggression. They release aggression bit-by-bit
- Anglo-Saxon… N. Europeans tend to live peacefully, unt8il there is extreme brutality within the Anglo-Saxons. Spain- constantly being aggressive to everyone around them
- Lack of Snobbishness… There are no lower class accents in Spain. Accents aren´t associated that way in Spain as they are in Britain. Spanish people are very proudly independent. Friendly: Friendships are superficial
- Feverishly nocturnal… Nobody sleeps here. They take lots of naps- the siesta.