Why is Eastern European Culture much richer than Western European?

Eastern European are very family oriented, value their traditions and are proud of their culture.

People in Eastern Europe are more friendly and have a great affection for family and friends so traditions are better preserved.

My friend is Ukrainian and her family as others are following different traditions. They go to church during all the holidays, although they are not religious. They are making varieties of specialties during the holidays and often go with them to other family and friends to share. While sitting around the campfire they are singing old local songs and watching old immortal traditional movies. As well the festivals looks bright, unique and memorable.


It's not.

I understand why it looks that way but that's because of your perspective.

Western Europe is incredibly rich in culture from rich cuisine (French cuisine is divine and Im going to include Portuguese cuisine too) to traditional festivals still being held.

The reason why it appears less ‘rich' is because much of our culture has been exported to the wider world through colonialism and hence its no longer limited to Western Europe and so is taken as ‘normal culture'.

Furthermore, the Iberian peninsula is so incredibly rich in culture that Portugal has several holidays throughout the year for food festivals, folklore festivals, etc where people go out in traditional dresses (rather similar to traditional Hungarian dresses) and dance in the streets! This also happens in France and the UK! The reason why people don't see this is because metropolitan cities dominate the West and so many tourists only encounter cities and don't go into the country and small towns where the culture is preserved. The reason why Eastern Europe seems to have more culture is because even their capitals aren't as developed as Western capitals because of poverty and the Soviet Union, hence traditional culture is still thriving. And of course in response to the Soviet Union's attempt to erase their culture, they fought back by strengthening traditional things.

Hence the East may *appear* richer in culture but it's mostly due to perceptions as well as where people actually visit. Europe is so diverse in culture and still so incredibly rich in culture that it's pretty rude and dismissive to think that France has no culture compared to Poland for example.


Well, I think you just haven't been exposed to the very vibrant and rich Western European traditions. :)

Look at the picture below, this is a fest-noz (night party) in my region, Brittany:


I disagree. You can find vibrant culture almost everywhere you go. Excluding the special case of the Americas and Australia, most places in the world are products of several millennia of cultural development.

If you know what to look for, you can always find interesting culture. If you're limiting things to dances and clothing, then you're probably missing out on a lot, since they're some of the parts of an aging culture that are quick to go.

Maybe you should:

  1. Listen to more music
  2. Eat more food
  3. Watch more theater
  4. Watch more movies
  5. Read more literature
  6. See more architecture
  7. Participate more in holidays and social gatherings

... from Western European cultures.

Using my native Denmark as an example, no-one dances "traditionally" anymore or dresses like Vikings did. We dress as most Westerners (including Eastern Europeans) do. But we still have great traditions for music, movies, TV-shows, furniture, literature, poetry, architecture and festive occasions, like Christmas or just the general Scandinavian party culture. I'd also like to believe we have some good food, but no. We don't. Go to Italy or France for that one.

Anyway, I'd say you're making a big mistake by judging solely from your own experiences. I'm sure if you devoted enough time to it, you'd see that Western Europe has culture as well.

Bonus: It also occurred to me that the reason Western European culture might seem non-existant to you, is because Western European culture has largely became the norm or influenced the norm in pretty much half the world, which makes it a bit invisible to people who already semi-grew-up-in-it


That's not remotely true.

We have just as many traditional dances,clothing, beer, brandies, wine, and food in Germany as they do in Ukraine.

France, England, Spain, Portugal, Italy, and the Nordics as well.


Your perception probably stems from the fact that the reputation of those countries is dominated by corporate brand names and political figures that fight for international attention.

That doesn't leave much room for anyone to tell you about the cultural heritage.

Eastern Europe, given its non-capitalist 20th century, don't have their image crafting dominated by large corporations trying to sell you things.


Whatt?? It's not richer. This question applies a one way standard kinda like why are not apples more like peaches.

Back until the late 1800's Easten Europeans (EE) were flocking to Weastern European (WE) Universities and coming back with this same ideas. How cultured WE is. Well yes. It was, because the rich people there wanted to show off how rich they are. While in EE we had to pay our tribute to the Sultan if we were in the Balkans or bow down to the Emperor if we were part of Russia.

They measured culture by innovation back then. Guess what.. today Innovation is still higher in WE.

Oh.. You mean wearing the national clothes and dances, eating traditional food and .. I don't know.. singing carols for Christmas.
Well.. remember communism on this one. They tried to be stamped out regionalism and religion. What you are seeing is an old generation that misses their childhood and so, it is very traditional and resists globalization. This was nr 1. And nr 2, WE tends to be urban while EE is more rural. It's kinda hard to take your sheep grazing in the city. It's hard to have a traditional wedding between apartment buildings. And surprisingly, it's even hard to go singing carols. I know.. I was a young village boy once that also lived in the city. We always went singing in the village. We never could do that in the city. People were not home, nobody was opening their doors and generally it was not really too fun.

I will give you the example of Denmark vs Romania.
A village in Ro has many houses, one next to the other, with relatively poor families and kids, and agriculture is their only way of living.
A village in Dk has many houses, but usually they are either wall to wall (German style) or in the middle of a field, barely surrounded by anyone, with relatively good income families, and the adults work in the city, but live in the country side.
When you are poor or isolated, you have to live with your neighbor and funny enough you tend to cook together, eat together and drink together. Your wife is usually your childhood friend, or maybe a girl from a village next to yours.

Hopefully this did not turn out as a rant,
I just meant to say is that if you want to say a place is more cultured that it wares traditional dress.. then.. there you go. Being biased you made EE seem more cultured. But if you say Rapp music, operas and culture houses are a proof of culture.. than WE wins.

For me.. culture is made by tradition (Italy and Denmark win on this. One is a huge family based and the other is a social cooperation), food (Portugal and Romania) and social activity (Netherlands or Norway because they are literally involved in anything. Spain cause.. "have you ever been at a party with a Spanish?" and Poland because they have a culture center in every small village and I have always seem people there)
Never been to Russia but I bet you they have a lot.


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