The human mind associates cultural symbols as a visual, verbal or written representation of reality. Sybolism is everywhere around us, we associate deeper meaning to symbols every day and most of us do not even realize.
Visual Cultural Symbols can be seen everywhere, we brand ourselves with tattoos to make a statement, we wear brand name clothing, listen to music on our ipods and drink grande skim lattes from Starbucks. Every one of those things I just mentioned are a form of symbolism. We associate the bitten apple icon to all Macintosh products, as we also do with the swoosh created by Nike. Many of us, including myself have tattoos, perhaps to show our rebellion yet still grouping ourselves with the rest of the inked nation. A tattoo is a form of symbolism, they mean something deeper than the ink resting in your skin. Married couples wear wedding bands to show their status of being taken and to show their loyalty to their other half. Most of the world, when you see the bright, yellow arches while driving down a highway you know a McDonalds will be coming up in the near future. In short, visual symbols are everywhere around us.
Written Cultural Symbols are used everyday in one of the most popular things to do, texting. Texting has created a completely new language in recent years. Everything is abbreviated to make sending your message easier. Every language in the world is written symbolism, it shows our culture by another just by scanning the pages of a foreign book or magazine.
Spoken Cultural Symbols also show who we are as a culture. Many languages have created sub languages, such as ebonics, slang and accents. I was born and raised in South Philadelphia and hearing me speak, anyone could guess that is where I am from. A southern accent shows the cultural twang of the persons home, and the New York accent may be the most heard accent on television and in movies.
In the world today symbolism can show the social status of a person, how educated they might be, the age and even the culutural background. The symbols around us, make us. Throughout the decades symbols have been born and buried, and then brought back to life. The peace sign was very popular in the 1960's and 1970's as a sign of freedom and love often used to protest the war in Vietnam. In recent years it has been reborn, yet used more lightly perhaps more of a fashion statement these days. It kind of has lost its powerful aura it once had in earlier times. Even the crucifix symbol associated with religion has been re vamped in society as a symbol, many stars and musicians wear the rosary around their neck. A cultural symbol has now changed into a fashion statement. Cultural symbolism keeps evolving and will never stop until humans cease to exist. In the end my main point I trying to make is if there is a culture, there is symbolism.