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Travel broadens the mind?

  1. Jul 15, 2005 #1
    I hear this phrase used quite frequently, but how true is it really?

    Have your travels made you any less provincial?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 15, 2005 #2
    A lot of how we see the world is based on generalizations that we form from our environment. Traveling sometimes exposes you to people and places that defy generalizations and therefore puts into perspective the things that perhaps you have believed throughout your life.

    A simple example of this is racial stereotyping. For a person who lives in a certain neighborhood all his/her life, it may seem perfectly valid to racially stereotype a person because a small sampling of few-deviating people may continuously reinforce such ideas. However, by traveling to other places and perhaps meeting people who break that stereotype, this person now can conclude that a stereotype is insufficient and that ultimately, stereotypes in general are dodgy statistical correlations at best.
  4. Jul 15, 2005 #3
    Very true...
  5. Jul 15, 2005 #4
    Not me. For there is another saying: "You can take the zoobie out of the woods, but you can't take the woods out of the zoobie."
  6. Jul 15, 2005 #5


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    Yes, in Argentina, its F=1/2ma
  7. Jul 15, 2005 #6
    Its very true, it gives you a whole new perspective on our ever shrinking world.
  8. Jul 15, 2005 #7


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    I think it's more true when you live in an actual provincial area, like South Dakota. Growing up around Los Angeles and especially working at Disneyland for two years, I met every imaginable kind of person from every part of the world. That said, I'm sure travelling to other countries would still expand my mind, giving me an idea of what life is like in other parts of the world (aside from what I see in documentaries and my anthropology-buff girlfriend constantly talking about what she learned the other day). If you can't travel, though - sadly, I've never left the North American continent - you can always watch foreign films, read foreign literature, and study foreign mythologies. I do feel like I've learned a great deal from that. Then again, knowing the ritual significance of the symbolism employed by Roman castration cults isn't necessarily going to tell me much about modern-day Italy.
  9. Jul 15, 2005 #8
    I grew up in Upland California and lived there until I was 13. Then we moved out to the Midwest and eventually ended up in So.Dak. Then while in the service I ended up back in the California only this time I was in central California.

    The travel I was talking about comes from visiting different countries around the world and experiencing a different culture directly.

  10. Jul 16, 2005 #9


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    That doesn't mean it isn't more true when you actually grow up in a provincial area. The first place I ever moved to out of California was Swannanoa, North Carolina, a tiny little farming village in the Appalachians. It seemed like in some parts of the mountains there, some of the people under the age of 18 had never even seen a brown-skinned man before. Ironic seeing as how I lived four miles from a Cherokee burial site that was being excavated by university archaeologists.

    Just so you know, I wasn't trying to call you provincial. I know you've been in the military and have probably travelled to far more places than I have. You should be in a unique position to experience what I meant, though. Having grown up in Upland (I grew up in Whittier, only about 15 miles from there), you should be able to see how different it is for the kids growing up in Brookings.
  11. Jul 16, 2005 #10
    :blushing: Sorry....

    I guess I would have to agree then...I still have California plates...lazy I know...the looks never cease to amaze me. especially from the younger ones...
  12. Jul 16, 2005 #11


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    Yes - travel broadens one's mind - I still remember many trips and places. I once spent two weeks (including one week in England) with my father. England was especially significant since we visited the place where my paternal grandfather was born and lived.

    As a result of traveling overseas, I have several very close friends who I can go see when I have the opportunity in the future.
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