Analyze and interpret the following quotation: “The confrontation of Western
civilization with other peoples whose values were often dramatically opposed to
the West’s…suggests that by the dawn of the twentieth century, the tradition and
sense of centeredness that had defined indigenous cultures for hundreds, even
thousands, of years was either threatened or in the process of being destroyed.
Worldwide, non-Western cultures suddenly found that they were defined as
outposts of new colonial empires developed by Europeans, resulting in the
weakening of traditional cultural practices, political leadership, and social
systems that had been in place for centuries.” (Sayre, 2013, pp. 410-411).
In the later nineteenth and early twentieth century, what would this “loss of
centeredness” of culture have meant for a given cultural group? Select from
among the non-Western cultural groups noted in the text (Native American,
Chinese, Indian, Japanese, or African) and research the impact of Western or
European cultures on that group.
What was the selected non-Western culture like prior to the late nineteenth
century? How did it change as a result of European expansion? How is this change
representative of what Sayre calls a “loss of centeredness?” Be sure to use
specific examples and details.