European and Greek Heritage and Health Beliefs
Subject: Public Health
Cultural Group: European American A Brief History Descendants of the first European settlers; Have always been the largest group; The Spanish were the first Europeans in America (Cross, 2017); German, Irish, and British immigrants – the first wave; The second wave – mainly Southern and Eastern Europe. Values and Worldview Free will and individual choice; Objective knowledge and science; Taking pride in the country of origin; Individualism and independence; Emphasis on work and material possessions. Language and Communications Patterns The English language dominates; Require personal space (Brzozowska & Chlopicki, 2015); Avoid physical contact with strangers; Different nations added their vocabulary to English; Contributing to geographical names. Art and Other Expressive Forms Develop the European heritage; Exploiting new technologies; Adhering to strong literature traditions; Outstanding achievements in all spheres; High capitalization of art. Norms and Rules Minor differences due to national customs; Respect for different cultures and religions; The majority adhere to Christian ethics; Families are centered around children; Have strong political opinions. Lifestyle Characteristics The trend for self-reliance; Being unique and believing in themselves; Earning as early as possible; Possession of strong work ethics; Striving for professional and personal success. Relationship Patterns and Common Rituals Have wide nets of weak connections; Less emphasis on traditional marriage; Tendency to marry in their thirties; Reverence for family gatherings and holidays; Patriarchy prevails in families. Degree of Assimilation or Marginalization from Mainstream Society A third of the American population; High level of assimilation; Set trends across the groups; Marginalization is low; Easily socialize with different cultural groups. Health Behaviors and Practices Fresh air is the basis for wellbeing; Regular jogging and fitness; Healthy diet, vegan practice; Attention to body image and beauty; When in sickness, ask relatives and friends for help. Socio-Cultural Group: Greek American A Brief History Came from Turkey, the Balkans, and Egypt; Failed to colonize Florida in 1768 (Moskos, 2017); The first community developed in New Orleans; In 1924 got the lowest immigration quota (Jurgens); Were severely discriminated against. Values and Worldview Adherence to democracy through history; The heritage of Ancient Greece; Family and local community; Loving and enjoying life; Work hard to achieve success. Language and Communications Patterns Treasure their native language; Teach Greek in special schools; Prefer to communicate face-to-face; Do not require much personal space; Use expressive body language. Art and Other Expressive Forms The root of Western classical art; Literature and philosophic tradition; Characteristic sculpture and architecture; Practice ethnic dances; Celebrate traditional festivals. Norms and Rules Men and women kiss when greeting; General respect for the elderly people; Including children in adult activities; Hospitality and sociability with strangers; Dressing appropriately to the Church. Lifestyle Characteristics Have a slow pace of life; Characterized by collectivist culture; Spontaneous and flexible with plans; Take afternoon naps; Strong religious tradition. Relationship Patterns and Common Rituals Men are expected to be breadwinners; Women are responsible for the household; Advocate conventional marriage; Close connections with extended families; Meeting at coffeehouses with friends. Degree of Assimilation or Marginalization from Mainstream Society Two-thirds stress their Greek identity; Largely live in cities; Loyalty to traditions and ethnic groups; Marriages between the Orthodox and non-Orthodox; An equal number of Republicans and Democrats. Health Behaviors and Practices Try to avoid hospitals; Prevent illness with folk remedies (Lundy & Janes, 2014); Greek diet and exercise; Caring for family and friends; Using herbs as a medicine. Both Groups A comparison and contrast analysis of common characteristics and distinguishing traits between the groups
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The Greeks are more collective-centered; Both groups are patriotic; Both mostly live in cities; Close in religious beliefs (Christianity); The Greeks are more traditional in social relations. Discussion of Differential Approaches Needed by Health Care Professionals Establishing trustful relationships with Greek families; Educating on clinical medicine; Importance of timely professional help; Respect for traditional values; Paying special attention to children. References Brzozowska, D. & Chlopicki, W. (2015). Culture’s software: Communication styles. Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge Scholars Publishing. Cross, J. A. (2017). Ethnic landscapes of America. Cham, Switzerland: Springer. Jurgens, J. (n. d.) Greek Americans. Web. Lundy, K. S. & Janes, S. (2014). Community health nursing (3rd ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning. Moskos, P. C. (2017). Greek Americans: Struggle and success (3rd ed). Abingdon, United Kingdom: Routledge.