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The Amish have a distinctive culture. Do you think their beliefs and values mean they have as good a quality of life as someone living within modern society?

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Introduction

James Bullock 1001 Amish Essay The Amish have a distinctive culture. Do you think their beliefs and values mean they have as good a quality of life as someone living within modern society? My essay is about describing the Amish way of life in considerable detail. It is also about comparing, contrasting patterns, trends and making comments about their way of life compared to someone living in modern society. It is also about describing strengths and weaknesses in both societies. At the end of the essay I will decide whether the Amish beliefs and values mean they have a good a quality of life as someone living within modern society. The Amish are a religious group of people who live in 21 states in America and Ontario in Canada. They believe in non-violence, not using technology and dressing very simply. They started out in Europe- but were outsiders among mainstream religions. This led to them being persecuted so many of them went to North America. In the first half of the 18th Century land in Pennsylvania was purchased and communities were established. The Amish get their beliefs from the Christian church when Catholicism was the only Christian faith practised in Western Europe. In 1517 Martin Luther revolted against the Catholic Church, which stated Protestantism. A few years after this a group of young protestant pastors were getting annoyed that things weren't changing. ...read more.

Middle

Their shirts fasten with conventional buttons, but their suit coats and vets fasten with hooks and eyes. They do not have moustaches; but grow a beard after they marry. Amish females wear modest dresses made from solid coloured fabric with long sleeves and a full skirt." This is different to modern society, where we have the choice to wear what we want. As they do not use modern technology, they use thins like horse drawn equipment for ploughing the fields and horse and cart for transport. This is different from modern society where we use modern technology to get to places quicker and to make things easier. Every Amish person speaks three distinctive languages: Pennsylvania German/Dutch, English and High German. This is different from modern society where people speak lots of different multicultural languages. The Amish have strong family bonds and always sit together and eat as a family. In the film witness, we see John Book sit down and start his hot dog straight away, whereas the Amish women and child said their prayers. This is different to modern society where there is hardly a time when the whole family are together and where divorce is increasing more than ever, and the common two parents 2 children idea is a lot less common. ...read more.

Conclusion

I would find it hard to fit into the back to basic lifestyle of the Amish. I would soon get bored, and miss the luxuries of the modern world. As well as this, there are a few other things in the Amish lifestyle that aren't as good as modern society. The fact that children leave school at 14, they miss out on social skills. Also I think that they have a prejudiced view on the modern world, and not seeing the good points to it as well as the bad. There is also a lack of individuality somewhat, as people have to conforn to rules and dress code, or be shunned. The sources that I have used have been very useful, but are they reliable? I will start with the film witness. There are a few things in this film that are not reliable. Firstly, and most evidently, the fact that John Book, who is someone from modern society, was accepted into the Amish society. The film made it look like this was common, but it very rarely happens at all. Also the fact that at the end of the day witness is a film and not a religious lesson, so therefore has to put plot before correctness in the Amish lifestyle. Although it was a very useful source, I found other sources, such as the course book more useful, as it's not trying to tell a story, it's just presenting you with the information. ...read more.

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