Cultural identity is an important part of an individual’s personality. It often dictates the way they talk, think, and live. It involves various aspects such as one’s nationality, language, religion, and gender. However, cultural identity is something that an individual can choose to believe. While most people acquire a nationality, gender, and religion after their birth; they may grow up with a different cultural identity. This is due to their experiences that may have influenced their beliefs.
This highlights the importance of writing a cultural identity paper as it can provide individuals with a clear insight into their preferred culture. This article aims to guide individuals on how to write about identity.
Cultural Identity Essay Definition
A cultural identity essay is an academic paper about the author’s cultural identity. This type of document tends to be reflective since the author will need to share their personal thoughts and ideas. Writing the paper does not rely on looking for reliable sources and citing them in the body paragraphs. Instead, individuals will need to use their experiences and knowledge to clearly discuss their cultural identity. The paper is a great medium for individuals to express their emotions and learn more about themselves.
Some of the common topics for this type of essay are experiences, places, influential people, traditions, food, and ideologies. These topics are closely related to cultural identity as they can showcase a way of thinking or a significant event. Topics, like influential people and ideologies, can help readers understand the personality of a particular culture. While other topics, like places, food, and traditions; showcase the significant practices of a culture. An individual writing a cultural identity essay should pick a topic that they feel strongly about. This will make the writing process easier and provide a steady flow of ideas.
Cultural Identity Essay Basic Structure
Similar to other academic papers, college essays about cultural identity should follow a basic structure. This will allow the writer to easily organize their work and also ensure that readers can comprehend the paper. The basic structure for this type of paper follows the standard introduction, body paragraphs, and conclusion format. Additionally, since it is an academic document, students may need to include a reference page.
All college essays begin with an introduction. This section is the introductory part of the document where the writer must aim to capture the reader’s interest, provide background information, and state the importance of the topic. Students can utilize controversial statements to persuade the readers to read the whole document. They can also utilize strong descriptive writing to paint a picture for the reader and entice them into reading. Aside from these, it is important that the reader acquires a general idea of the document and understand the objective of the author.
Additionally, the introductory paragraph must include the cultural identity paper’s thesis. The thesis is a one to two sentence-long statement that defines the main idea of the document. It should indicate the main point that the author will discuss in the body paragraphs. Depending on the topic, the thesis can be a personal idea or a statement of fact.
Body paragraphs contain the main contents of the cultural identity essay. The contents of the body must support the thesis statement and give substantial information to the readers. In a short academic document, the body will contain three paragraphs. However, since this type of essay tends to be reflective, students can write more than three paragraphs to support their thesis.
The body paragraphs must contain discussions regarding all the points of the author. To make an effective body, students should discuss one point in each paragraph. This will make the document easier to read since the readers can easily identify each point. Additionally, since each paragraph contains one point, the author can extensively discuss their ideas without writing unnecessarily long paragraphs.
The conclusion is the last paragraph in a cultural identity essay and should conclude the document. To conclude the document, students can restate the points that they previously discussed as well as the thesis statement. However, it is important that they do not make the conclusion too long since it can lead to repetitive ideas that the author already discussed. Students can aim to dedicate one sentence for each point and additional sentences for the thesis and concluding statements.
Cultural Identity Essay Writing Tips
Writing a cultural identity paper can be challenging due to its reflective nature which requires a student to express their emotions in writing. Some students may find this process difficult since they may feel uncomfortable sharing their feelings. Below are some tips to help students struggling with their papers.
1. Start with a draft
Since this type of document requires an individual to share their emotions and personal ideas they will not have the option to use sources to find information. Their main source of content will be their experiences and ideas. To efficiently extract these ideas, students should start by writing a draft and focusing on putting their thoughts into paper. When writing the draft, they should not think about proper formatting, structure, spelling, or grammar. They should aim to put all the ideas they have on the topic into paper. They can ignore errors in their grammar and spelling and simply continue writing. This process will greatly help in composing a good cultural identity paper.
2. Use descriptive language
Writing a cultural identity paper is a reflective, and possibly, emotional process. An individual may be writing about a personal experience that they are hesitant to share or an idea that they are too excited to talk about. To achieve the goal of defining one’s identity, it will be useful to utilize descriptive language in the paper. An author can do this through vivid examples or anecdotes that will grab the reader’s attention and provide a clear understanding of the author’s point. Additionally, using the first-person perspective along with emotional words can make the document sound more personal and sincere.
3. Read other cultural identity essays
Reading other similar documents can help an individual get an idea of what to write. Cultural identity involves various aspects of life from religion to a person’s diet. Reading other papers will allow an individual to understand how to effectively express their thoughts and share their cultural identity. It would be better if an individual finds a similar topic to the one they are currently writing. For example, a student writing about a religious site can learn a lot from reading another essay regarding a culturally significant place. Reading can provide substantial information that an individual may potentially disregard.
4. Reread the paper the next day
One of the best ways to examine a document is to look at it with fresh eyes. Students that just have completed a paper will greatly benefit from setting it aside and rereading it the next day. This is because writing is a mentally-taxing activity and trying to refine a paper right after its accomplishment can cause the author to easily miss errors. Taking a good night’s rest and forgetting about the paper can help an individual better assess their work. However, if a student is under a tight deadline, they can instead take a few hours or minutes to relax before evaluating the paper.
5. Let someone else read the paper
Aside from rereading the document, students should let someone else read their paper. This person can be a friend, colleague, or even a stranger. The point is, allowing someone to read the paper can help an individual find errors in their work that they otherwise would have missed. The reader can also assess if the author successfully expressed their ideas and achieved their objective. They may find inconsistencies in the writing or ask questions regarding confusing parts of the document.
A cultural identity essay is a reflective academic document that requires an individual to discuss their cultural identity. Writing this type of document does not only help in improving a student’s writing skills but also allows individuals to better understand their identity. Individuals writing a cultural identity essay should keep in mind the ideas that this article discussed and utilize them to compose an excellent college essay.