Does Europe have a common culture? We occasionally ask you what it means to be “European”, and those of our readers who do feel part of a European identity (which is by no means all of you) often mention shared values, history, and culture. It’s true that we all have Beethoven and Da Vinci as reference points, but are they uniquely European? Surely great artists are part of a shared global culture, part of humanity’s common heritage? Also, modern Europeans are probably more interested in living Hollywood celebrities than in dead composers and painters.

True, we all eat Italian food, but we also eat Indian and Chinese food. Is there anything uniquely European that binds us together culturally? Or has culture gone global in the 21st Century?

We had a comment sent in on our “Suggest a Debate” page from Anonymous, who asked what European culture was.

Historically, European identity was often associated with religious identity. The name “Europe” rarely appeared on maps in the Middle Ages, with cartographers more commonly referring to the continent as “Christianitas” (Christendom). Early proposals for common European political unity (such as those of the 15th Century Bohemian King George of Poděbrady) were justified with reference to Catholicism.

Even then, however, there were Muslims in Iberia, Orthodox Christians in the East, Jews living across Europe, not to mention the Cathars and other movements considered heretical by the Church. The Protestant reformation complicated the picture even further, making it impossible to describe the continent as a united Christendom. Instead, “Europe” became a geographic (rather than religious) idea.

Today’s Europe is even more diverse in its cultures and beliefs. Ideas and fashions from across the world meet and blend together in the melting pot of modern European life. Is there any common thread running through all of that?

What is ‘European culture’? Is there anything that binds us together culturally? Or is culture global in the 21st Century? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!

IMAGE CREDITS: CC / Flickr – Kristina Savic

149 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

    • avatar
      Bódis Kata

      Read the New Testament and you will know.

    • avatar
      Jose Marcal

      I was going to answer the same but no need to repeat

    • avatar
      Kung Jin

      I would say that secularism is more relevant than an outdated concept of christianity (lower case intended). Morals don’t necessarily come from any religion, as multiple European states with incredibly low percentage of ‘believers’ show.

    • avatar
      Elie Awake

      Kung jin christian values dont mean to force people to be Christians its just inspired from Christianity and u can be whatever u want but still the law and social values are inspired from Christianity

    • avatar
      Leonardo Monteiro

      I agree with Elie Awake – I am functionally an atheist (no belief in god), but whatever i like it or not, i am culturally christian. I observe christian holidays even by tradition, and i have the sense of christian individualism.

    • avatar
      Leonardo Monteiro

      That said, I would add secularism is a key European value.

    • avatar
      Δημήτρης Χαλβαντζής

      Three cities have shaped Europe, Jerusalem, Athens and Rome. All the other things, are the upper part of an inverted frustrum with these three cities, as it base.

    • avatar
      Cris Dracou

      Bódis Kata Christian religion is the Christ,s teaching, and not the old and new testament.

    • avatar
      sofoklis stefanidis


    • avatar
      Mary Guttel

      Roman Law no longer have in Britain, where the law is based on precedent. The other two you mention are the pillars of European culture.

    • avatar
      marie louise delvaux

      well said, but don’t forget the Latin language that allowed the medieval
      intelligentsia to cross the continent for centuries.

    • avatar
      Wlodzimierz Gontarz

      Ethics is just derivative of religion. Protestant ethics is different from catholic ethics which is different from islamic ethics, etc… Which ethics do you mean?

    • avatar
      Julia Hadjikyriacou

      Also look at stand-alone actions regardless of the motivation behind it, especially religious and punish accordingly. E.g like the rape of a child by a refugee must not be forgiven, or not being allowed to name harmful actions by Israel or not punishing injustices by Turkey for fear of retribution. Look at violations of ethics and do not baby countries or races/ethicities because of their religion.

  1. avatar
    Yannick Herve

    Il n’y a pas de culture européenne. Il y a un héritage plus ou moins partagé de culture grecque et romaine. Les Peuples se sont développés indépendamment même si des échanges ont existé.
    Quelles convergences entre un italien du Sud et un danois, un Breton et un letton, un portugais et un lituanien ?

    • avatar
      Bódis Kata

      Yes, there’s a European culture and civilisation and within that we have the national ethnic cultures.

      Would you say that there’s no Chinese culture? The cultural differences between the various provinces are huge, no smaller than the difference between Scandinavia and, for example, Bulgaria.

    • avatar
      Yannick Herve

      Le seul point commun est la religion imposée par la force et les massacres.
      L’islam va détruire ce lien extrêmement fragile et artificiel.
      Il y a plus excommunications entre un portugais et un brésilien, un espagnol et un argentin, qu’entre en français et un suédois.

    • avatar
      Yannick Herve

      Le seul point commun est la religion imposée par la force et les massacres.
      L’islam va détruire ce lien extrêmement fragile et artificiel.
      Il y a plus de lien organique entre un portugais et un brésilien, un espagnol et un argentin, qu’entre en français et un suédois.

    • avatar
      Piotr Azia

      Beaucoup plus qu’on ne le pense, en considérant le mouvement des peuples à travers les siècles. Les Normands, ont bien occupé la Sicile, emmenant leurs culture et leur type physique. Il n’y a pas un seul coin d’Europe qui ne soit connecté à tous les autres – sauf le Pays Basque espagnol. L’invention des états nations et des frontières est relativement récente, ainsi les gens voyageaient librement à travers le continent, que ce soit pour étudier, découvrir ou conquérir

    • avatar
      Piedade Luisa Pinho

      Speak for yourself.
      And no. Islam is not going to destroy christianity. Is going to make It stronger.

    • avatar
      Elie Awake

      The only common background is Christianity apart from that last a little things .and now do u include russian and Georgia and ukraine in Europe ? Or u inly think about thr EU ? Lol

    • avatar
      Dave Morrow

      but even Roman Culture took influences from Egyptian Culture , as well as from Celtic Culture as all empires do , Spainish Culture was hugely influenced by the Moors , and probably by the Inca’s , as British Culture has been influenced by Asian and African Cultures.

  2. avatar
    Wolf Achim Wiegand

    Europa means living on the continent where modern civilization as we know it today stems from. European discoverers and adventurers have found the “new world” and have (mostly) succesfull “exported” their European way of live.

  3. avatar
    Yannick Herve

    Seule la religion imposée par la force peut sembler être un ciment bien fragile. L’arrivée en masse de musulmans (ou l’intégration de la Turquie) va détruire ce lien déjà très ténu.

  4. avatar
    Ivan Burrows


    There is no such thing as a ‘European culture’, there are as many cultures as there are defined peoples within the 51 Nation States of Europe.

    • avatar
      Gustav Bekkrman

      There is definitely a European culture.

      You cannot speak about the Northern European Albrecht Dürer or Jan van Eyk without speaking about the Southern European Michelangelo or Leonardo da Vinci. Nor discuss Shakespeare without acknowledging the influence of Classic Greece. Nor Chopin without Bach.

      The cross-cultural influences were so immense that none of the cultures in Europe stayed isolated, culminating in a European culture.

      17/10/2017 Felipe Santos Rodríguez, Director of the Cervantes Institute in Brussels, has responded to this comment.

      31/01/2018 Sneska Quaedvlieg-Mihailovic, Secretary General of Europa Nostra, has responded to this comment.

    • avatar
      Wlodzimierz Gontarz

      And this is very definition of European culture. They all live and thrive, sharing something, borrowing something, exchanging something, with no intention to extinguish one another. Similar, but different, and most of all compatible…

    • avatar

      And various cultures/subcultures within them

  5. avatar
    Yordan Vasilev

    The European values are freedom, democracy, tolerance, privet own and free market.

    • avatar

      And what’s the difference between U.S. and Europe then?

    • avatar

      And most importantly Free speech!

    • avatar
      Wlodzimierz Gontarz

      I think it is time for you to take some time to go over the basic school history program and re-learn what you forgot, or learn what you never knew about history of European culture…

    • avatar
      Anna Campbell

      I suggest you learn about Righteous Among the Nations. In Poland alone 6,620 people risked their lives and many died in the process (including entire families and villages, because the punishment for helping a Jew was death in Nazis hands). THIS is the European culture, sir!

    • avatar
      Taline Babikian Angelidou

      Romans, Greeks, Celtics?!,Slavs…Scandinavians?! and other tribes/clans..I think make up what we know today as amd recognise as Europeans

  6. avatar
    Elie Awake

    Cultures are affected by languages and religions so the only commun cultural background in Europe is Christianity .and now do u include russian and Georgia and ukraine in Europe ? Or u only think about thr EU ? Lol

  7. avatar
    Paul Franssen

    Only persons scrutinizing their bellybutton and the collection of bacteria ever present there would fail to observe the broader environment which brought about the general context making it possible for that nombril to subsist. There is no such thing as a narrow interpretation, when evaluating such broad expanse of phenomena as “culture”: no two beings are exactly alike, some prefer Rameau to Bach, but both musicians, one German, the other French, did play the same instrument, and even in those days, with difficult, oft perilous, travel, knew each other’s music. There was correspondance on all levels. Same was not exclusive to Europe: scholars of Moslim origin heavily influenced medicine, philosophy and mathematics, by no means exclusively European domains. Peter the Great lived in the Netherlands, Karl Marx in London. It would be a humongous error to identify Germans by the standards of any one of their individual citizens, Italy by spaghetti or pizza, France by mere association with romantic imagery. We do not, ladies and gents, live in merely a village: that village is built with bricks from elsewhere! Europe has a heavily intertwined common history, and that most certainly not in a favourable context! European culture is most visible once one leaves the continent, when other cultural influences become more prevalent. I have lived in various European countries, and need not to be convinced that we have common culture.

    • avatar
      Giorgos Plevrakis

      There could have been no better put answer!

    • avatar

      Well said

  8. avatar
    Guillem Martí Bou

    – Christianity and Jew basical and reformed values.

    – Free Market/Personal Freedom.

    – Rule of Law.

    The western values that get prosperity and freedom into any society, and which its repeal would generate always misery and repression around de globe.

  9. avatar
    Vicente Silva Tavares

    Like it or not (and I am an atheist), the European Civilization is based on Christianity and the actual social values dues a lot from the Renaissance (Enlightenment).

    • avatar
      Wlodzimierz Gontarz

      What is so nice is that something like Renaissance could only happen in Europe… and this was great. Definitely without Greece and Rome we could not have such Enlightenment….

  10. avatar
    catherine benning

    Whatever it is that has made us connect as Europeans is beautiful. And obviously admired throughout the world. Many outside our land mass are resentful of our way of life but cannot wait to get inside of it. And once they do find they want to destroy it as they cannot understand its depth or begin to be part of it’s uniqueness. Hence the constant attacks and reference to racism. The truth being, the shoe is on the other foot.

    This gives a view of the basis of us being Europeans.

  11. avatar
    Savas Ozyurt

    To answer this, we have to go aaaaaall the way back to the beginning… darkness, cave, no fire, forest… then we can understand the true culture of Europe.

    • avatar
      Wlodzimierz Gontarz

      Well, in XX century people discovered cultures living at that level with no sign of any progress… cave is common to all ancient people around the globe… And forest actually had quite a lot of spiritual meaning for old people, much more peaceful and enlightening meaning than Christianity or Islam…

    • avatar
      Savas Ozyurt

      And somewhere somehow Europe has lost its touch with all that.

  12. avatar
    Stefania Portici

    La cultura deve essere cosmopolita .Le diverse culture arricchiscono la società ma l’economia deve essere nazionale per tutelare e salvaguardare i diritti del 99% della popolazione mondiale. . I globalizzatori attraverso l’economia stanno distruggendo l’uno e l’altro ,la globalizzazione sta distruggendo la cultura e i diritti dei cittadinbi. I popoli si scontrano non per la cultura . Birbacciona , ladra, assassina e guerrafondaia la globalizzazione degli ” illuminati” che l’hanno voluta in questo modo .Quegli illuminati sono dei criminali

  13. avatar
    Christina Kler

    Learn history first !!! Then you can talk about culture and cultural heritage !!! And RESPECT it .

  14. avatar
    Margarita G. Soto

    If you really want to create a true union, don’t waste your time talking and take the necessary steps to do what it takes so that happens now

  15. avatar
    Nicholas Farrugia

    European culture is what the EU dictators want to eliminate. Europe has a rich cultural diversity with compatibility. The so called multicultural pseudo liberal twits want to put everything in a cultural Liquidizer INCLUDING incompatible cultures and blend everything into some tasteless shitty too.

    • avatar
      My name

      I always wonder why it is only European countries that- as some poeple claim- need diversity. Why they never look at Japan or Nigeria and say ‘there is not enough diversity in this country’?

  16. avatar
    Bernard Barthalay

    It depends on what you mean by culture. Some mean identitity, but there is no more a European identity than national identities. Because identity refers to some uniqueness, a same something that does not exist. I don’t even speak my mother tongue just like the guy nextdoor. Each milage is different. Is it useful or just or benign to think in terms of one unique identity? No. Not at all. As François Jullien wrote, there are just “cultural resources” available to us, to choose from, a legacy of more or less elective affinities. Not one standard native inheritance, to be stuck on you by force or by law or by birth place (natio).

    • avatar
      Maia Alexandrova

      The combination of history, geography and religion is what made Europeans unique.

  17. avatar
    Ariste Arvanitides

    You will not have to define European Culture soon, as it will be wiped off the face of the earth with the hoesting of enemy invadors in our lands, with a cultur of their own, of beheadings and slavery and other evil things such as IMPOSING their BARBARIC and ISLAMIC culture to eliminate ours. The west bombed them out of their homes, and now they want revenge… and they are ge tting it.

  18. avatar
    Tamzin Jans

    Here is the problem: everyone thinks they will be wiped off and that their whiteness or their Christianity or their other self-identity will be wiped off by another who is probably Black, gay, atheist, woman, Muslim, freeloader migrant globalist elitist liberal!

    Europe didn’t have a culture until things were imported: food, religion, humans, lifestyle, philosophy etc.

    Europe also exported “its culture” to millions of humans across the globe.

    We are a part and parcel of a mixed humanity.

    • avatar
      Anna Jugo

      ‘Europe didn’t have culture until things were imported: food, religion, humans, lifestyle, philosophy etc.’. What times are you talking about? The times before the first people set their foot in Europe? Because otherwise your statement is silly. Where is a group of people, there is a culture. People always have their customs, traditions, beliefs- that’s what culture consists of. Also, why did you use quotation marks in this sentence: ‘Europe also exported “its culture” to millions (…)’? I know that the comment was made 5 years ago, so I don’t expect this person to reply, but I wanted to notice that it’s weird that they used quotation marks only referring to Eureopan having its own culture. It seems to me that this person might be very biased.

    • avatar
      Andre Mardaga

      Like what other heritage.
      Illuminati or kebab…..

  19. avatar
    James Allen

    If the Western Canon (particularly literature) were still taught by competent teachers who believed it was still important to illuminate and transmit great works to the next generation, this question would not need to be asked.

  20. avatar
    Adam Williams

    What makes Europe special is the diversity of compatible cultures. I’ve absolutely no idea why there is a rush for union. Single currency, single parliament….you may as well have a single language then.

    • avatar
      John Lamprogiannis


  21. avatar
    Κωνσταντίνος Πατσαλάς

    I suggest you my friends to read the book of Mr. Giannaras Christos for the two totally different cultures of Europe, the Eastern and the Western. In its base is about the fondamental distance between Byzantin-Greek way of life and Vikings-Franks-Saxons.

    • avatar
      Roman Romanov

      Latin influenced westerners and Byzantine influenced east

  22. avatar
    EU Reform- Proactive

    One of “THOSE” questions (again)- very well than- dear EU! Those who are so very sure about a correct answer- probably just “shoot” from the hip & being trapped.

    The relentless & rabid political EU concept- championed by all these ethical & moral “flag bearers” know very well & doing their utmost- because they have decided, directed and are determined to:

    abolish, destroy- uproot- equalize what is/was known as “our common European cultural heritage”- contributed over millennium by all those tribes & nations who inhabited this part of the earth. These enlightened forces are forging ahead to replace the old traditional order(s) to form a new concept/culture- using “cohesion” etc- to build their new world order. Everything based on “Treaties” & regulations- equally applied & strictly enforced all over- centrally controlled.

    That is contrary to what “traditional (despised) European culture” is & was. It’s perversion or “modernizing” (real purpose?) is now understood by many to become the neo EU culture- to be loved, embraced & saluted!

  23. avatar
    John Lamprogiannis


    • avatar
      Wlodzimierz Gontarz

      In Polish language, there are a lot of words that come directly from Sanskrit, including most significant ones like veda-wiedza-knowledge, budda-budzić-awaken, numbers, family members, etc. Similar both in sound and meaning.
      This does not contradict what you says: mythology, geometry, even music tuning in European music until XVI century, etc… but I see European culture as an extension and enhancement rather than simple continuation…

  24. avatar
    Chris Pavlides

    Unfortunatelly current europe is not the continuation. ITS THE SHADE. Darkness is familiar to north.

    • avatar
      Wlodzimierz Gontarz

      Well, islam did not do any good to Europe… pity… Christianity, well, this topic will never be met with some agreement, but at least we got a lot of old architecture for tourists, and some nice music… :) Buddhism first came to Europe by the end of XIX century and was very limited to just a few people, so to short time to really make an impact…

  25. avatar
    Gregorio Baggiani

    Portogallo ed Estonia condividono la fede cristiana, la democrazia, lo stato di diritto ed altre cose, pur essendo ovviamente diverse sotto molti altri aspetti.. la Russia è invece senz’altro europea dal punto di vista culturale , ma non dal punto di vista poilitico, questo la rende ambivalente dal punto di vista civilizzatorio, evidenziandone i punti di contatto con l’Europa, ma anche la sua alterità politico-culturale……

  26. avatar
    Peter Bakos

    I have lived in France and Hungary. There are common cultural elements and there are different cultural elements. I would also suggest that 1000’s of years of history has injected new elements to that cultural heritage and that it is in a constant state of flux.

  27. avatar
    Wouter de Ruiter

    About the only thing all Europeans have in common is that we all like cheese. For most of Africa and Asia cheese is just rotten milk

  28. avatar
    Wouter de Ruiter

    About the only thing all Europeans have in common is that we all like cheese. For most of Africa and Asia cheese is just rotten milk

  29. avatar
    Wouter de Ruiter

    About the only thing all Europeans have in common is that we all like cheese. For most of Africa and Asia cheese is just rotten milk

  30. avatar
    Wouter de Ruiter

    About the only thing all Europeans have in common is that we all like cheese. For most of Africa and Asia cheese is just rotten milk

  31. avatar
    Wouter de Ruiter

    About the only thing all Europeans have in common is that we all like cheese. For most of Africa and Asia cheese is just rotten milk

  32. avatar
    Wouter de Ruiter

    About the only thing all Europeans have in common is that we all like cheese. For most of Africa and Asia cheese is just rotten milk

  33. avatar
    Wouter de Ruiter

    About the only thing all Europeans have in common is that we all like cheese. For most of Africa and Asia cheese is just rotten milk

    • avatar
      Maia Alexandrova

      The teachings of Jesus Christ is what connects all European people into one.

    • avatar
      Jerzy Pielas

      Christianity was and still is a great disaster to European culture.
      Hopefully it will vanish in XXI century.

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Dionysios Stavropoulos
      Roman Law is INFERIOR to COMMON LAW – just look at TI index for proof!

  34. avatar
    Georgios Kyriazopoulos

    European means first of all to be Greek…because is Greek name…and without Greece….the european countries…would be not the way they are now…

    • avatar
      Danny boy

      If I were you i’d start worrying about where Greece is now,the laughing stock of Europe.

    • avatar
      Maia Alexandrova

      Without Christianity European countries would not be the way they are now.

  35. avatar
    Paul X

    People keep confusing values with culture, they are not the same

    European values are pretty much the same as the rest of the western world, and that includes America (unfortunately for all you US haters)

    There is no common culture throughout Europe, and despite how much the EU is trying homogonise things, there hopefully never will be. Who wants to travel across Europe and experience one bland “Euro-culture”?….. the best thing about traveling around Europe is being able to experience all the cultural differences in a relatively small continent

  36. avatar
    Paul Grajnert

    a) There is no such thing as Europe. This is a racist figment of a racist’s imagination. b) Enlightenment values are universal values.

  37. avatar
    Maia Alexandrova

    European is the culture of all countries geographically located in Europe and all people in them who are native to Europe and have been connected in history by Christianity – whichever denomination. It is not the culture of any nomads or immigrants who came from other continents and brought their own religions and beliefs with them.

    Nowadays religion does not have that much significance, so European culture is more about human values, stemming from the teachings of Jesus Christ. People are not obliged to be Christian, but just to respect those values and not to try and impose themselves on others. Different religions, beliefs and practices are only acceptable, if they do not disturb the indigenous European population. Tolerance does not mean lack of any opposition to incompatible and unacceptable moral teachings from other parts of the world. It means letting newcomers live at peace, if they do not disturb the peace of the local community. It is not wrong to be intolerant, if someone passes that boundary.

    • avatar
      Danny boy

      So I take it in your vision of this continent a black Muslim praying to Allah in the park is unacceptable,but a blue eyed,blonde Aryan praying to Jesus is fine by you?

    • avatar
      Maia Alexandrova

      The Black Muslim praying to Allah does not represent the European, but African or Asian cultures. Blonde people are mainly part of the Northern European cultures, but still indigenous Europeans, as are the predominantly dark-haired white people of Southern Europe. USA, Canada and Australia are offshoots of the European culture, but do not represent it, simply because they are geographically located in America and have had their own unique development separately from Europe.

      Anyone can pray in the park, if they want, provided that it is not loud, provocative and disturbing others in any way. What I meant by “unacceptable moral teachings” is, for example, preaching hatred of Christians or imposing guilt and shame on women for wearing summer clothes. This should not be tolerated.

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Maia Alexandrova
      Some ‘offshoots’ are better than others methinks?

  38. avatar
    Stelios Peppas

    A mix of Christianity as neoplatonic system of ideas filtered and the supreme power of the Roman Empire heavily influenced by Hellenic culture and Easter mysticism. In matter of fact thanks to Eastern Roman Empire aka Byzantine Empire Europe is also experiencing the Renaissance period

  39. avatar
    Mario Dingli

    The difficulty with Europe is that each individual courtry has a very deep hisorical background and each country would never think of renouncing one bit of their individuality. This is not like the United States; this is a very difficult question. The Spanish had their empire; and are proud of it; the French the same; the Portuguse the same. When the Europeans start to forget their glorious past, then , oerhaps, we can start to move forward towards a truly united Europe

    • avatar
      Paul X

      Sorry, but to me phrases like “renouncing individuality” and “forgetting the past” are truly frightening and I cannot comprehend how anyone can even think like that (though I have no doubt your opinion is probably shared by more than one or two Brussels)

      Take away individuality and what have you left, some pseudo communist society ?

      ..and we should never forget our past, some parts we should be rightly proud of and some parts maybe not so, but it happened and nothing can change it, but we can learn from it

  40. avatar
    Dany Barradas Sobral

    I don’t really think it is appropriate to say ‘European culture’. At the end there are European CultureS. Yes there are many similarities, which one can take as common points, but at then end it is important to preserve each and every European culture.

  41. avatar

    So called “Christian values” is nothing more than Church’s slogan deprived of any sens and without any meaning.

  42. avatar
    Monique Taxhet

    European culture can be defined by democracy and freedom. Very diverse cultures cohabitating in peace, at least that’s the am. Not always easy but worth every effort. :-)

  43. avatar
    Agathi Gkouderi

    It’ s a common cultural and spiritual heritage derived form Greco-Romain antiquity, Christianity and Renaissance.

  44. avatar
    Florence Baudin

    Yep European culture is being replaced by Islamic culture because the corrupt leaders are in bed with the rich Arabs and the banks

    • avatar
      Bruno J. De Cordier

      Hm, European cultures were already eroded before that by Americanization (or, more adequately, cultural ‘New Yorkisation and Californisation’). And the only thing Islam is doing, is using the inroads and cracks created by internal decadence.

  45. avatar
    Bruno J. De Cordier

    The legacy of the Enlightenment that is often invoked has degenerated in the venomous and thoroughly anti-European combination of economic neo-liberalism and cultural Marxism dominant today. The only way for European rebirth and even survival is to connect again with Europe’s Traditionalist pagano-Christian nature. For Northwestern Europe, which is objectively in an advanced stage of decadence, it might be too late though. Which means the core of White European civilization might move eastward.

  46. avatar
    Andreas Laskaris

    In the article you mention only medieval characteristics as if you forget the fundamental historical and cultural basis of Europe that are the Greek and Roman civilisation! Religion comes second but also connects a common tradition among Europeans! Same religion path for 1000 years and politically devided for the next 1000 years! In conclusion the common European culture exist through the Greek-Roman civilisation and Christianity and French illumination!

  47. avatar
    Noel Muscat

    It is true that, throughout its history, Europe has been a melting pot of cultures. One has to be specific about what he intends by the term Europe, since in classical and mediaeval times Europe as a cultural centre was rather seen as encompassing the Mediterranean basin, more than our contemporary concept of Europe. It was from the Mediterranean basin that Europe gained much of its present identity, including the development of modern European languages, the socio-political framework of modern states, and a Jewish-Christian identity. To reject these facts is to reject the very notion of what European culture is all about. In spite of all this, however, Europe has never been, and will never be, a united socio-political-economical reality. In all aspects of its rich cultural heritage Europe is a confederation of nations and has seen borders shift in continuation. Diversity is the trade-mark of Europe in all aspects. The EU will fail if it does away with the fundamental concept of respect for diversity and recognition of historical truth when it pretends to create its own European framework. For example, Europe without the Mediterranean dimension, Europe without its Christian identity in culture, is a false creation of a postmodern culture without any roots or sense of identity. This is the mistake of the EU today… Its effects are already felt in its shaky structure, since true identity is not only based on economic growth, but upon a recognition of sound human values.

    • avatar
      EU Reform- Proactive

      A well painted- befitting a more “complex European painting” to live with & die for, than just dry, neo liberal political treaties, regulations & cohesion’s to be enforced & adhered to by a Brussels Suzerain!

    • avatar
      catherine benning

      @ Noel Muscat

      This is split thinking really, as, Judaism v Christianity cancel each other out.

      Judaism is the ethic of an eye for an eye. Christianity is, turn the other cheek.

  48. avatar

    European culture is empathy.
    That is the root of most European values: egalitarianism – both in everyday relations and in economic system; labour law; quite liberal social norms; quite liberal criminal law; rule of law which should assure that people are treated fair; aversion to any kind of “natural order of things”. Basic idea that other people are no less worthy then myself.
    Of course this is not an only universal value and extent of its practical implementation in different areas is a battlefield between left-wing and right-wing. But still, I’d argue that this one is elementary.
    It’s hard to answer this question without enough knowledge about non-European cultures, but that would be my hypothesis based on a few discussions with people from Asia, Africa, USA and Russia, and with people I know who have lived there for some time. The most surprising thing for me was this idea of hierarchy, of being better than others – because of wealth, of diligence, of confession, of sex, of being a citizen of an empire, whatsoever.
    Of course, I mean modern European culture. Cultures differ in time just as they differ in space. What made Europe exceptional was not Roman law and Greek philosophy. It was turning matter into movement and movement into a flow of electric charge. Looking for a common ground for pre- and postindustrial Europe is – imho – quite misleading.
    Is empathy a Christian value? Christian churches adapted to the reality of feudalism, which was something quite the opposite. But I would argue that culture based on empathy is quite deeply rooted in teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. Even European atheism had to determine itself in relation to his moral views – most of which have not been negated.

  49. avatar
    Dr Jean-Pierre Van Hees

    Une manière commune d’évoluer positivement en s’efforçant de de ne plus reproduire les erreurs du passé tout en développant de nouvelles idées pour un futur meilleur.

  50. avatar
    Lasse Ørberg

    A flock of birds.
    Each flying their own way.
    Yet together.

  51. avatar
    Borka Gergely Attila

    Greek philosophy, roman law, some christianity (not necessarily the religion itself but the influence of it and some values), latin, architecture, humanism, enlightement, classic music, WW1, WW2, the european dream of peace.

  52. avatar

    Ancient Greek scripts, Roman Law and Christianity.

  53. avatar
    Jokera Jokerov

    Lay Christian. The French have a very good expression: La Republique est laique, mais la France est Catholique.

  54. avatar
    Chastity Turney

    European culture is amazing for me and I am only 11 years old. I study it daily and I need some answers. What is their culture?

  55. avatar
    Michael Hales

    Europe has three major and several minor language families, most of them interrelated. It has three major monotheist religions plus freedom of thought for those who are not religious. We share the same basic conception of human rights. Capital punishment has been eliminated. We share the same musical tradition albeit with national/regional specialisations. We visit each other’s countries and appreciate each other’s particular gifts and talents.

    • avatar

      i like european culture

  56. avatar
    Athanasios Spyropoulos

    The culture that Unites Europe is our philosophy. Our European Philosophers Unites us. Starting with Plato and Aristotle. Nicolo machiavelli jean jack Rousseuau. it’s European philosophy that unites us.

  57. avatar

    Maybe we could speak of common roots and shared “branches” along millennia:
    1) the Indoeuropean mothertongue, for the languages (with the special exception of ugro-finnic family);
    2) the ancient forms of paganism beliefs, over which Christianity took roots and “borrowed” many elements (Christmas’ Eve, Easter, Brigit = Saint Brigit, but also the name of weekdays in many European languages);
    3) the Roman law before and the Germanic law later, during high Middle age;
    4) the evolution of pictorial and musical arts;
    5) the mutual influences in architecture and city-planning;
    6) the social and political organization, with a pyramidal concept of public administration (parliamentary monarchies and republics);
    7) humanism as (more or less unconscious) approach to many aspects of life (unlike the dominance of the “group” in Asian culture);
    8) the scientific and the industrial revolutions (and, at the base of them, the curiosity and the hunger of knowledge and power);

    – individualism;
    – liberalism;
    – human rights (more or less, depending on which geographical point in Europe);
    – a growing ambientalism and culture of sharing;
    – the hunger of “emotions” and “experiences”.
    But as the article said, all of these are more likely “global” than “eurocal”.

    • avatar

      i like europe european culture too much

  58. avatar

    European culture is the foundation of humanity. If Logos, Geometry and Music is what differentiates the humans from other mamalian species then it all started here. The European culture has always been Europe’s effort to the light against the Erebus of her father Phoenix. It has always been Europe’s will to be kidnapped by Zeus. European culture is what is left from the movement of Europe away from the Middle Ages that Christianity imposed. And this has only be partial effort as the Greeks were by these times occupied by the Ottomans. Now that all Europeans are free, European culture is what will emerge when Europe will ultimately get rid of Christianity and the other Abrahamic religions.

    • avatar

      europe culture good

  59. avatar

    i am indian living in india.i have great value respect on european people of their humanity basic social & personal descipline and originality in life.thoe thing not available in west asia to south asian is wrongly taught & wrongly political failure and so and so failiures.thats why iwant the current european people`s thought culture.

  60. avatar
    no face

    i jjust need to know: Explain one shared cultural trait found in Europe and how has it influenced Europe’s modern culture. can someone help me?

    • avatar

      christianity is the main common factor that europe had in common for the last 1700 or so years. the other main one is being the direct legacy of Rome, whether the Eastern Roman Empire (eastern europe) or the Western Roman Empire (western and central europe)

  61. avatar

    christianity and being directly or indirectly descended from Greece and Rome

  62. avatar

    Religion: no monoteist religion is indigenous to Europe. Simply none of those emerged in Europe, as the self-hatred, gynophoby, and disturbed praising of suffering wasn’t part of our attitude. The Greeks had multiple gods, the Romans had multiple gods, and the Vikings had multiple gods, none of which demanded them to be petty underlings to a skewed ideal to what essentially is servitude, in fact quite the opposite.

    Freedom and self-expression: sadly, this is also diminishing slowly and silently into being culturally required to adhere everyone’s tiny little “offended” pathetic soul, although from time to time in European history, the desire to live, speak, and act as an individual, rather than merely a specimen with barely more than collective identity in a flock, resurfaces, at least.

  63. avatar

    I think it’s shared common values rather than culture

  64. avatar

    European culture include the way of living in the City from ancient Greece, the roman law, Christianity (church in the center of the village) from Middle East, celtic heritage…well it’s difficult to summarize ! I think also about Islam that brought ancient greek knowledge and allow european science and philosophy. Well, i did my best to define european culture…

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