BC: Our text talks about the fact that many White people believe that they have no culture. I was one of those people. After some reflection I realize that my family has its own culture consisting of the various beliefs and traditions pulled from our many ethnicities and personalities. We are not religious in an organized way, but we all believe in our own private way. I say that I am Italian because of my last name, but I have come to realize that "Lombardi" stands for its own ever changing and ever growing culture. A culture that is based on the belief that family, of any shape, size or makeup, is the single most important thing in one's life.
FC: My Linguistic & Cultural Background Scrapbook By Jennifer Lombardi
1: This is me. I am a 28 year old English speaking preschool special educator. I consider myself Italian because of my last name, but in reality I am a mixture of many different ethnicities. I have spent most of my life right here in Massachusetts in a fairly large city south of Boston.
2: My mom and dad were young and unmarried when they had me. My mom attended dental school and became a hygienist, and later, an orthodontic assistant. | My dad made an attempt to attend college, but quickly decided it was not for him. Instead, he became a firefighter and took over his family's restaurant. | In 1986, they had my brother, Jonathan. My parents held us both to very high standards, expecting that we would both go to college and be more successful then they, themselves, felt that they were.
3: My extended family functions very much like I imagine a true Italian family might. I was raised to believe that family always comes first. We are fiercely loyal, hardworking, loud, opinionated, and very close-knit. | The family unit consists of not just blood relations, but also of many friends who are considered family. We look for ANY excuse to get together and any issue to debate amongst ourselves. My cultural background is grounded in this large, multicultural family .
4: My immediate family has almost always lived just beyond our means. We lived mostly in the two houses shown here-the house on the top was in a middle class neighborhood and we had lower to middle class neighbors. Thehouse shown below located in an upper- middle class neighborhood with upper- middle class neighbors. | We have always been a lower- middle class family, but my parents wanted more for us, so they did everything they could to make us feel and appear better off then we actually were.
5: I was raised Catholic but my parents required only the minimum work possible to remain part of the church. We loosely celebrate all Catholic holidays but do not attend church. As a result, I am not overly religious and no longer consider myself a part of any organized religion. I have always been taught to think for myself. Therefore I have my own beliefs based on my loose Catholic upbringing and the many other religions I have learned about in my life and studies.