Culture Shots

Your Culture makes you unique

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Message in a shot for WOMEN around the world

During this week we have collected messages for the International Women’s Day from people we have met. We hope you enjoy it! 

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Filed under cultshots womensday china colombia sweden pakistan

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Jympa - The Swedish way to exercise

A lot of you have probably heard about the exercise forms crossfit, spinning, yoga and body pump, but have you ever heard of jympa? In Sweden, jympa has been available for a long time and is today perhaps most related to the association Friskis&Svettis - at least if you are Swedish. The name jympa comes from the word gymnastics and jympa can be described as being similar to aerobics class in its content, but tends to be less choreographed and less coordination-requiring. It is a fun and unique way to exercise and both yougn and old people are welcome, because jympa is for everyone!

A proof of jympa being an exercise for everyone is that the concept cannot only be be found in Sweden, but also in other parts of the world. In China for instance you can try out jympa with Heyrobics. Heyrobics was founded by a Swede who took the concept jympa to China, but added an own and modern touch to the concept. It is very popular and is appreciated by both Chinese and expatriates living in China. They have all sorts of fun events like roof-top jympa-sessions on skyscrapers during the summer, jympa-sessions in parks and running camps. We think Heyrobics is a good way of showing that activity and exercise can bring people with different cultural backgrounds together!

Since it is the International Women’s Day the 8th of March, Heyrobics wants to send a personal message to the women all around the world! 

International Womens Day is all about strong, happy women… And so are we! Join us on Friday 8th of March (or anytime!) for a Swedish-Style full body challenge that will put one big SMILE on your face. Big, small, young, dry or sweaty: we love you as you are!

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Happy, healthy Women’s Day from the Heyrobics Team!


To learn more about Heyrobics or join one of their sessions, visit their website

Filed under jympa Cultshots sweden heyrobics womensday china

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A Culture Shock event

On the 2nd of March, 2013, we had a dinner party at Reema’s corridor, located in Delphi, Lund. Soraya had created an event on a social meet up website where she and Reema are active members. The group consists of a mix of students, working professionals, locals and ex-pats from a diverse mix of both cultural and ethnic backgrounds. They are a nice bunch of people interested in socialising and having fun. Soon our event had plenty of people signing up and even queuing up in the waiting list. The theme was obviously to share cultures and this time the medium was scrumptious food! 

By 7:00 PM all the guests started pouring in, and soon we had the entire corridor’s common kitchen area full, with excited people and steaming hot dishes. Johanna and Saranda came all the way from Malmö all prepared with necessities such as paper plates, cups and their own dishes. By 8:00 PM we could literally see a culture ‘shock’ wave throughout the corridor. People belonging to different cultures mingled and talked. Once everyone had settled down and the dishes were setup, we all one by one introduced our traditional recipes, followed by a short introduction to our blog. Right after that all the hungry birds attacked the food. Everyone wanted to try all the dishes and get the recipe for their favourite one. The dishes included, Japanese sushi salad, Bangladeshi Keema Palao and Pakoras, Indian Daals (two types), Afghani/Jordanian Palao, Swedish Reindeer stew, Kheer (Indian Dessert), Arepas with flavoured Tomatoes and beef sauce from Colombia, the Swedish cake Kladdkaka, ice cream and so much more.

Once we had eaten we turned up the music and everyone joined in for free style dance. We put up loud Indian and salsa music, and much to our surprise we all turned out to be amazing dancers while picking up on dance moves from each other. The food we ate was digested for sure! 

The evening came to an end after two hours of nonstop dancing. Tired and happily stuffed with food, people decided to leave for their homes, since some had to catch buses and trains in time. We bid them farewell, showered with compliments and hopes that in future we will arrange more such events. All in all the evening turned out to be a blast and for those of you who could not join us, we have a video we would like to share with you. Hope we can transfer some of the festive mood to you!

 

Filed under Cultshots dance salsa food

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International Women’s Day on March 8th

International Women’s Day is celebrated on the 8th of March every year and was initiated around 100 years ago by the German politician Clara Zetkin, as a way of honouring the women’s movement and to support the right for women to vote. In Sweden it has been celebrated since 1912 and in many parts of the world it is also a national holiday – in order to inspire women around the world and to celebrate the achievements that have been made so far, all sorts of different events are held in many countries every year.

The recent happenings in India, where the rape of women has become increasingly common, has gotten a lot of attention in international media. This is only one of many problems for women around the world and the fact that this is something that women are exposed to in 2013 shows that the situation for women all over the world needs to be improved.

As mentioned above, International Women’s Day is given attention in different ways in different countries in the world. The Irish radio station Culture Shots has chosen to celebrate it by interviewing women who have taken great steps towards real solutions to issues of gender inequality. To listen, visit mixcloud.com

If you want to read more about this day and find about an event near you, go to internationalwomensday.com. Or visit United Nations Foundation’s web page, click here

Since we are four women behind this blog we will be covering this day as well, visit us again tomorrow and find out how we and others show our support for women. Leave a message to all the women around the world on our Facebook page, click here, or below through DISQUS.

 

 

Filed under women cultshots mixcloud womensday

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The Swedish Royal Court

The Swedish Royal Court is well known in many parts of the world and consists of King Carl XVI Gustaf, his wife Queen Silvia and their 3 children Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Madeleine. Together they represent Sweden and perform different types of ceremonial duties and functions, but they have no political power and are therefore not involved in the Swedish politics.

Sweden has been a hereditary kingdom for more than 500 years and the Swedish monarchy is one of the oldest in the world. In June 2010, it got a lot of attention when the Crown Princess Victoria got married to Daniel Westling. Approximately 500 000 well-wishers came to Stockholm to celebrate that day and 1 200 people attended the wedding in the Stockholm Cathedral, among them different members of Royal families from other countries around the world. This year it is time for a Swedish Royal wedding once again – on the 8th of June Princess Madeleine will tie the knot with Christopher O’Neill. Make sure you are in Stockholm that day if you want to take part in the celebrations!

To learn more about the Swedish Royal Court and to read more about the coming Royal wedding, visit http://www.kungahuset.se/  or http://www.sweden.se/

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Filed under Sweden Royalfamily wedding monarchy Cultshots

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# 12 Did you know?

In Singapore it used to be prohibited to chew gum, because people had the bad habit of sticking them everywhere which made the city dirty. It was also forbidden to spit for the same cleaning reasons as for chewing gum. This tells us that this culture is really concerned about hygiene. What do you think?

Interested in visiting or learning more about Singapore? Visit www.yoursingapore.com and/or check out this video by vidtur.com about Singapore – top 10 attractions!

 

Filed under didyouknow Cultshots culture singapore travel

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The Colourful Holi Festival in India

Holi is celebrated on a full moon day in the month of March to welcome spring. This is when the fields are filled with crops, promising farmers a good harvest, while flowers bloom everywhere. The entire country is festive at the time of Holi. Markets are full of active shoppers who are busy preparing for the festival, heaps of various hues of gulal and abeer (colour) can be seen on the road side in every shop. Pichkaris (water guns) are available in new modern designs to attract children into buying them and using them to drench each other.

There are said to be many legends associated with Holi, but some of the famous include that of demon King Hiranyakashyap who demanded everybody in his kingdom to worship him. But his own son, Prahlad denied doing so. Angered Hiranyakashyap wanted his son to be killed, so he asked his sister Holika to enter a blazing fire with Prahlad in her lap, since Holika had a boon that made her immune to fire. Story goes that Prahlad was saved by lord himself for his extreme devotion and evil minded Holika was burnt to ashes, for her boon worked only when she entered the fire alone.

Since then, people light a bonfire, called Holika on the eve of Holi festival and celebrate the victory of good against evil and devotion to God. Children take special delight in the tradition which has another legend. It says that there was once an ogress Dhundhi who used to tease and trouble children in the kingdom of Prithu. She was chased away by children on the day of Holi. Hence, children are allowed to play pranks on the day of Holi.

Filed under cultshots india holi color

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Count on the fingers to ten the Chinese way

One of our guest bloggers wanted to give us a lesson in how to count on our fingers from one to ten the Chinese way. What do you think? 

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Filed under china cultshots

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# 11 Did you know?

Did you know that the dance tango is from Argentina and that couples from Japan, Russia, Colombia and the United States frequently win the Tango Dance World Cup?  However, last year Argentina recovered its dominance at the world’s top tango dancing competition. In 2009, UNESCO declared tango as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Tango is a beautiful fusion of the European and African cultures, which were brought to Argentina by the Spanish, Italian and French immigrants and the slaves, respectively.  The dance originated in lower-class districts of Buenos Aires and it has developed into different styles; even Electro Tango. Thus, it seems that there’s a tango style for everyone - for some people tango is the most sensual dance!

 


Filed under dance tango UNESCO Argentina didyouknow