Is it racist to criticise a culture?

Do you think a person's race should generally determine a person's culture? Should a person align himself w/the country he was raised in, the country his parents were born in, or the country where he is a citizen?

Is it *racist* to criticise a foreign culture?


Say I am very knowledgeable about this foreign culture.

Update 2:

& to "criticise" is not to yell hate and mindless insults, but to comment, "This can be improved, this is backwards, this is commendable, etc."

AND THUS, judge certain aspects of certain cultures as inferior, such as the misogyny, anti-education, etc. in some cultures.

51 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favourite answer


    You have every right to criticise something. But you must back it up with facts. Take note: Criticise is not to condemn. Condemn is a very different incident altogether.

    When you "criticise" a foreign culture, you are not actually criticising the culture, but the bad points.

    For example, quite unlike what many people had perceived, Islam itself is NOT a bad religion. It is just that some damn fools who embrace the religion misinterpret it and did damage to the world in its name.

    So, yes, you can condemn such people. In fact, they should be hanged. But, no, Islam itself is not a bad religion. You can criticise certain shortcomings it has, but you cannot condemn it.

    Hope this helps.

  • 1 decade ago

    It's very unAmerican to think a person's race is relevant to a specific culture. When I see people of color, some might be foreign, but others are very American. It's quite ignorant to believe that Americans have a specific physical look considering the country has such a long history of interracial mixing since Columbus set foot on this land.

    It is not racist to criticize a foreign culture. It is simply just an act of sharing a personal perspective. People tend to forget that criticism isn't a fact, but an observance.

    Some people are excessively PC to the point that it's a fault because the over sympathize with everything. People need to get over the whole race and ethinicity thing I think.

  • 1 decade ago

    The problem is over generalization. A culture, by definition, is the way that most, or at least many, people from a certain group behave and relate to eachother on a daily basis. If most people did not behave this way then it would not be considered their culture. Anytime you criticize a "culture" you have to make broadbrush general comments about the way "they" behave and those sweeping generalizations will not necessarily accurately describe every single human being from that cultural group. Because of this some people will call it racist, but others will say it is valid critisism.

    In any case however, you had better make really well sure that you are accurately critisizing something that is an actual element of a group's culture and not just a stereotype about that group.

  • 1 decade ago

    I think it's basically impossible for a person to be culturally anything but like the country he/she was raised in, since the environment has such a strong influence on a person's personal culture. But the influence from parents is pretty strong too.

    Yes, I think that it is often a form of prejudice to criticize a culture, depending on the intent behind the criticism.

  • What do you think of the answers? You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    Racism is treating a person different because they are a different race. Criticizing another culture isn't racist, unless it's done soly because they are a diiferent race.

    Culture is not a "should" in that a person is a product of all the cultures that they are influenced by with the majority of the culture being the one the grew up in. This is only a general statement, as individuals will vary

  • 1 decade ago

    If you criticize a foreign culture without knowing anything about it, based solely on misconceptions, preconceptions, bias, and prejudice, then, yes, you may find yourself guilty of racism.

    If you have a good knowledge and understanding of a foreign culture, you will be in a better position to "criticize" it. I don't mean knocking it down, but analyzing it, comparing it with other cultures, seeing the similarities and differences, the strengths and weaknesses.

    You should be just as capable of "criticizing" your own culture. You should realize that no culture has cornered the market on truth, or knows the "one and only" way of thinking and doing things. You should not swallow even your own culture hook, line, and sinker.

    We can all learn from one another. Appreciating other cultures doesn't mean you value your own any less. It just enriches your knowledge and understanding of the world.

  • 1 decade ago

    No i don't think it is. And I think that most claims of racism nowadays aren't actual cases of racism anyway.

    People seem to think if you mention race or criticise a culture then you are automatically being racist.

    However, it's only racist once you DISCRIMINATE based on ethnicity. (Note BASED, not just involving people of different races)

    I was watching the news the other day (UK) and there was a murder. The victim was black so the reporter asked the police "Do you think this was a race hate crime?". However, that never got asked for all the crimes involving white people on the same news bulletin. People are all so quick to claim racism..

  • 1 decade ago

    I believe it's racist to criticize a foreign culture because you're doing it out of sheer ignorance. Most racism stems from fear and ignorance and simply being uncomfortable with the unknown. There isn't any rulebook that states the culture you or I currently have is the correct one and we all should follow suit. This world was created with diversity and we need to embrace and respect it. You may not be comfortable with it, but it's not your life, it's theirs. I believe a person should align himself with whatever culture HE/SHE is comfortable with, irregardless of his parents' native land. If he/she is now an American citizen, but traditional customs are followed in his household, the Constitution says he/she's free to do so. We are so quick to judge or criticize people. When in the end, we are all the same.

  • 1 decade ago

    I think the person should align themselves with whomever they choose may it be their country or not. I think it is a bit racist to criticize a foreign culture because its as if you were to be criticized because you are a female or male without getting the fair chance to be yourself. cause everyone is unique and just because you are the same race or born from the same or different country doesn't make you better. We're all the same (human), but different (personalities, beliefs, movies like to watch, etc.!!! Also, if you were to criticize blindly, you are the one to be less educated because of your close-mindness. I don't think it is fair at all to judge someone/anyone without at least trying to get to know them.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Discussions about race (and culture, country, family) is fine.

    Just don't discriminate. You are "racist" only if your actions dictate that you are. We all have our inner racist, but we are intellectuals, and so we overcome those feelings. We can't help but to think them. It's like trying to control an uncontrollable reflex.... and we all know we can't stop our knee from jerking if we wanted to (at the doctor's office.)

    It's okay to criticize things. Back up your claims with information that supports your position, which is not race.

    Align yourself, with yourself. Choose your own allies based on how you feel. Don't worry about anyone else. Be true to your inner feelings about what is right and what is wrong. You won't disappoint yourself.

    Peace and love. Spread the word.



    not the dog

Still have questions? Get answers by asking now.