Quite a lot of people have striven to define ‘Englishness’ and failed in fact English culture is really a mixed culture, having assimilated the best from many other cultures. Racially the English are Celts, Romans, Vikings, Saxons, Normans, with a handful of lesser traits thrown in for good measure.
The colonial past has made the city more cosmopolitan than any other. Class is still often more important than color, though its boundaries shift with the winds. The English have always admired foreigners, and have imported other cultures, languages and foods, giving them a unique turn.
The main distinguishing trait of the English is the aplomb. The stiff upper lip and the seeming endless capacity to put up with the unspeakable was given a boost during the blitz when Londoners faced the might of the Nazi bombing campaign and terrible hardships with a cheerfulness that was almost pathological.
London is one of the most cosmopolitan places in the world. Where else can you order breakfast in Farsi, book a taxi in Urdu, ask for afternoon coffee in Arabic and spend the evening chatting with your friends in Cantonese? Over 300 languages are spoken in this very city.
London is certainly the capital for multicultural events and festivals, and hosts the biggest celebrations for the Chinese, Sikh, Bengali and Hindu New Years. London also boasts some of the greatest festivals in the world , one can witness anything from Turkish belly dancers to 4 x 4 Bhangra dancers, Bharatanatyam dancers to flamenco dancers and Russian classical ballet to Mexican Folklorico. Students play a crucial role in making London so dynamic and your experience in this city will provide one with a network of friends from all over the world.
London offers a fantastic diversity of population and supports a myriad of different lifestyles.People of all ages and backgrounds flock to London for many different reasons. They include improved work prospects, better wages, a higher standard of living and the stimulation of living in a bustling metropolis. The city’s lifestyles vary considerably and the options are endless. From nightlife to sport, shopping to theatre, art to dining there’s always something to do and people to meet.
London’s long-standing ethnic diversity is an important factor in its popularity with settlers from overseas. The strong economy of the City draws many people including graduates from around the country and beyond. The presence of large numbers of long- and short-term visitors also adds to London’s vibrancy. As with all big cities, there can be issues with traffic congestion, crowded public transport, long working hours and high costs of living but there are ample compensations and ongoing improvements on many fronts.
London is frequently likened to a collection of villages. Clusters of local shops, markets, parks, leisure centers and other venues help foster a feeling of local community within a conurbation of seven million people. Some areas have a particularly strong identities and associations making London a world in one city. The capital continues to draw newcomers all the time and it is a city that is always changing.