Russell Turpin
Fri, 19 Oct 2001 19:10:01 +0000

Jim Whitehead writes:
>But, *all* cultures change over time.  We now closely associate tomatoes, 
>and tomato-based foods with Italian food. But, tomatoes are a new-world 
>vegetable, and were introduced to Italy sometime in 1520-1545.

Yes, but we still have an Italian culture. We have lost
many other cultures. And Italian culture, as something
distinct, may be on its way out, destined to be submerged
in a larger CE culture. Even the Italian speaking portion
of its population may decline, since they have one of
the world's lowest reproduction rates. Some Italian
politicians have proposed a bachelor tax to encourage
adult men to marry. (Ironically, this was tried by the
Roman empire, to little avail.)

A culture is always changing. But not always in a way
that causes its own disappearance as a culture distinct
from the rest of the world's cultures.


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