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  • Writer's pictureMichael Acevedo

A Pedacito Of The Elements Of Culture: People, Place, Food, And Art

Pedacitos Travel & Culture was founded in 2020 by Michael Acevedo, a former Disney Imagineer who wanted to form a platform to bring his passions of travel and storytelling together as a way to share informational and inspirational culture stories from around the world. Since it's founding, Pedacitos has shared over 350 stories from contributors all around the world.

Pedacitos, pronounced "peh-dah-see-toes", is a Spanish word that means “pieces” or “bits” and we use the word Pedacitos to describe our stories, which are short cultural bits. That’s why our slogan is “cultural bits from around the world” and why our logo is made up of small multi-colored pieces that form the letter “P”.

We are not social scientists by any means, but we do believe that all cultures can be defined through four distinct components: people, place, food, and art. Today I'd like to briefly describe our perspective on each of these components. This is also how our stories are categorized, so I hope this can help you discover new cultures through out library of stories from around the world.

Elements of Culture: People

Our people stories highlight the cultural diversity that exists among individuals. These include religion, ethnicity, national heritage, immigrants, refugees, sexual orientation, gender expression, and more.

These stories also spotlight individuals in our community who are giving back in some way. They are leaders in their industry or area of practice and we hope to amplify the work that they are doing by sharing their journey with you. It is incredible to see how many ways people can give back, and we hope that by reading these stories you are inspired to share your gifts to advance the culture in our communities.

Elements of Culture: Place

Our places stories hone in on the natural and manmade elements that contribute to the cultural identity of a region. These include geography, attractions, national landmarks, and more. These stories help readers discover new places to visit and highlight the interconnectedness between people and their location as it relates to culture.

For example, how does an amusement park have anything to do with culture? Well, the place in and of itself may not, but it does impact the lives of people in an area. Disney for instance, where I used to work, has become a vital part of the cultural identity of Central Florida. It brings people from all over the world and from all walks of life to a single place that has a ripple effect on the community. Suddenly whole industries are formed that service people from all walks of life.

Elements of Culture: Food

Our food stories emphasize the role that ingredients, techniques, and traditions have in conveying cultural identity. These are the markets, restaurants, and more, that bring sustenance to the community.

I have to see, this is one of my favorite ways to discover and experience cultures! Food is an integral part of our lives, for obvious reasons. But beyond the obvious need to nourish our bodies, food creates a narrative about the influences on culture within an area and their people. The type of meats, fruits, vegetables, spices, and cooking techniques are all influenced by geography, migration routes, politics, and more. You can learn so much about people through their food and each dish has a story.

Elements of Culture: Art

Our art stories celebrate the many ways that culture is expressed. This includes music, dance, sculpture, theater, architecture, and so much more.

For some of you, this may seem like an obvious category, but others may not have connected art as a form of identifying culture. Art is truly an expression of our beliefs, upbringing, experiences, and helps share the story of people. Music is a great example of how culture is expressed. From the instruments that are used to the vocal arrangements, all of which are influenced by the unique story of a region and people.

We hope that our stories inspire you to learn more about the cultures all around us. In today's global economy we are more connected and alike than some might want us to realize. Despite extremist beliefs, bigotry, racism, and all the other forms of hate that exist in the world, I believe that at the end of the day we all want the same things out of life. We all want to be happy, have our needs met, and have the ability to express our unique selves without causing harm to one another.

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