Belgium and it's Culture - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

View by Category
About This Presentation

Belgium and it's Culture


Tourism, Religion, Region, History, Geographical location ,Capital, Famous places ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

Number of Views:5596
Updated: 2 November 2011
Slides: 49
Provided by: Defender08
Category: Other


Write a Comment
User Comments (0)
Transcript and Presenter's Notes

Title: Belgium and it's Culture

(No Transcript)
Presentation on Belgium
  • A PowerPoint Presentation
  • BY- K.Hamprishan

What is culture ?
  • Culture is the way of life of a group of people.

BASIC Elements of a countrys Culture based on
  • ARTS
  • FOOD


  • Gallia Belgica was the Romans' name for the
    northern part of Gaul, the northern limit of
    their empire. In early modern times, the name was
    used as an erudite synonym for the Low Countries.
    After the 1830 revolution and the establishment
    of an independent kingdom, Belgium became the
    official name of the country.

Location and Geography
  • Location and Geography. The country is located at
    the western end of the northern European plain,
    covering an area of 11,780 square miles (30,510
    square kilometers) the neighboring states are
    France, Luxembourg, Germany, and the Netherlands.
    The two main rivers are the Schelde and the
    Meuse, both of which begin in France and flow
    toward the Netherlands.

Location and Geography
The land rises progressively toward the south.
Flanders (northern part of the country) is less
hilly than Wallonia (southern part). The
German-speaking population lives at the borders
with Germany and Luxembourg. Discoveries of coal
in the hills of northern Wallonia led to the
early industrialization of the area.
Western Europe, bordering the North Sea, between
France and the Netherlands
three equal vertical bands of black (hoist side),
yellow, and red the design was based on the flag
of France
Yellow - a symbol of generosity Red - hardiness,
bravery, strength valour Black - Determination
Antwerp City Hall in the center of Grote Market
4 October 1830 (a provisional government declares
independence from the Netherlands) 21 July 1831
(King Leopold I ascends to the throne)
The independence of Belgium received the approval
of the European powers at the London Conference
of 1830-31. The Independence Day of Belgium
commemorates the formal establishment of the
independent kingdom and the crowning of Leopold I
of Saxe-Coburg. Prince Leopold I of Saxe-Coburg
was appointed king of the Belgians on his
willingness to support the constitution drawn up
by the National Congress.
Executive branch
chief of state King ALBERT II (since 9 August
1993) Heir Apparent Prince PHILIPPE, son of the
monarch head of government Prime Minister Guy
VERHOFSTADT (since 13 July 1999) cabinet
Council of Ministers formally appointed by the
monarch elections none the monarchy is
hereditary following legislative elections, the
leader of the majority party or the leader of the
majority coalition is usually appointed prime
minister by the monarch and then approved by
temperate mild winters, cool summers rainy,
humid, cloudy
  • Western Europe. It is a founding member of
    the European Union and hosts the EU's
    headquarters, and those of several other major
    international organizations such as NATO.
  • Belgium is home to two main linguistic groups,
    the Dutch speakers, mostly Flemish, and
    the French speakers, mostly Walloons, plus a
    small group of German-speakers.

  • Belgium's linguistic diversity and related
    political and cultural conflicts are reflected in
    the political history and a complex system of
  • The name 'Belgium' is derived from Gallia
    Belgica, a Roman province in the northern most
    part of Gaul that, before Roman invasion in
    100 BC, was inhabited by the Belgae, a mix
    of Celtic and Germanic peoples.

The population of Belgium is 10,403,951 as of
July 2008. The capital city Brussels contains
1,019,022 people.
Belgium classes as well as along the linguistic
border and around Brussels. The presence of
important Francophone minorities in some parts of
Flanders has been the source of political
conflicts and led in the 1980s to the resignation
of several central governments.
Belgium became independent from the Netherlands
in 1830 and was occupied by Germany during World
Wars I and II. It has prospered in the past half
century as a modern, technologically advanced
European state and member of NATO and the EU.
Tensions between the Dutch-speaking Flemings of
the north and the French-speaking Walloons of the
south have led in recent years to constitutional
amendments granting these regions formal
recognition and autonomy.
History and Ethnic Relations
Emergence of the Nation. Although the name of the
modern state refers to the original Celtic
inhabitants after the Roman conquest in 44 B.C.E.
, the population was Romanized and adopted the
Latin language. Latin gave rise to a series of
dialects including, in the southern part of the
country, the Walloon dialects. The name "Walloon"
derives from a Germanic word meaning "foreign,"
and refers to the Roman Empire.
Flemish culture came to northern Belgium as a
consequence of the Germanic invasions of the
fourth century. In the central and southern
regions, the Germanic invaders formed small
kingdoms and adopted their subjects' culture.
Until the eighth century, conquests and
divisions modified the borders of these kingdoms.
The last division took place at the treaty of
Verdun (843) between the grandsons of
Charlemagne, who divided the Holy Roman Empire
into three parts, of which the central part,
Lotharingia, encompassed the territories between
the Netherlands and Italy, including present-day
Belgium. However, Lotharingia was absorbed into
the German Empire, and the idea of a state
between France and the German Empire did not
resurface until the fourteenth century. The
Burgundian princes inherited, conquered, bought,
or received in dowry most of the fiefs
constituting the Netherlands, Belgium, and
northern and eastern France. They established
their court in Brussels and brought the French
language to their states. The possessions of the
dukes of Burgundy were inherited by the Habsburg
dynasty in 1477. In the middle of the sixteenth
century, a religious civil war led to the
division of the Low Countries into two parts. The
north became the Netherlands, a Dutch-speaking,
Protestant state. The south remained Catholic and
was associated with the Habsburg dynasty until
the French conquest in 1794. Under the Habsburg
rulers, the use of Flemish progressively
declined, but the position of French was
reinforced during the French administration
Belgium's cultural heritage includes the
paintings of Pieter Breugel the Elder (c. 1515 or
153069), Jan van Eyck (13951441), and Peter
Paul Rubens (15771640), and the music
compositions of Orlando di Lasso (153294) and
César Franck (182290). Modern Belgians writers
include the Nobel Prize-winning dramatist Maurice
Maeterlinck (18621949), and the popular
detective novelist Georges Simenon (190389), who
was born in Liège. Prominent modern painters
include expressionist James Ensor (18601949) and
surrealist René Magritte (18981967).
Belgian Family Values
. Family plays a central role in most
Belgians' lives. . The obligation to the family
is a person's first priority. . Many people
remain in the town in which they were raised,
which creates close extended families.
Appearances Matter
. Appearances are important to Belgians. . They
can often be seen washing the pavement or steps
in front of their house or even sweeping the
street. . Cleanliness is a matter of national
pride. . Belgians take great pride in their
houses.  To have overgrown hedges or untidy
gardens would disgrace the family and insult
their neighbours. . Belgians take pride in their
personal appearance too. They dress well and are
concerned with the impression they make on others.
Equalities in Belgian Society
. Belgium is on the whole an egalitarian society.
. Women are not expected to change their name
when they marry. . There are laws governing
paternity as well as maternity leaves and laws
forbidding sexual harassment in the workplace
Linguistic Affiliation. The main languages are
Dutch and French they are also the joint
official languages. Although German is also
recognized as the third national language, it is
not used frequently in the national
administration. French was introduced as the
language of the political elite by feudal lords
of French origin, particularly the dukes of
Burgundy, who choose Brussels as their main city
of residence. In the eighteenth century, French
was widely adopted by the bourgeoisie, and in
1830, it was adopted as the official language.
Through education and social promotion, French
replaced the local dialects in Wallonia and
Brussels, but it was not as widely adopted in
Flanders. In Wallonia, a series of Romance
dialects rather than a single language were
widely spoken but never had official status.
Brussels was originally a Flemish city, but the
influence of French has always been strongest
here, and only a tenth of the population speak
The language spoken in Flanders is Dutch, which
is commonly called Flemish. The Taalunie, an
official institution, guarantees the
international unity of the Dutch language. There
is a great diversity of Flemish dialects which
differ in vocabulary and pronunciation. French is
still spoken in Flanders by some people in the
upper and upper middle
  • French, Dutch, and German are the official
  • There are hundreds of different dialects coming
    from French and Dutch.

Many of Belgium's colorful festivals are based on
local myths. One is the famous Cat Festival of
Ypres. According to legend, medieval Ypres was
overrun by rats, and cats were brought in to kill
them. But the cats multiplied too fast, and
people took to throwing them off the tops of
buildings. (Today this action is imitated during
the festival with toy cats.) Folklore also
surrounds Belgium's traditional puppet theater,
whose marionettes are based on characters from
the tales of their particular cities.
  • Belgium is 75 Roman Catholic and 25
  • Religion has been another source of division in
    Belgium's history.

Religious Beliefs.
Catholicism is the main religious faith. The
government financially supports the Catholic and
Protestant churches as well as the Jewish and
Muslim faiths. The Catholic Church controls an
important network of schools with 70 percent of
the pupils in secondary education and two main
universities. Religious beliefs and practice
declined during the twentieth century, but
approximately 65 percent of Belgians believe in
God. Many people who say they do not believe in
God take part in religious rituals for major
events such as baptisms, weddings, and funerals.
Minority faiths include Muslims, Jews, and
Economy - overview
This modern private enterprise economy has
capitalized on its central geographic location,
highly developed transport network, and
diversified industrial and commercial base.
Industry is concentrated mainly in the populous
Flemish area in the north. With few natural
resources, Belgium must import substantial
quantities of raw materials and export a large
volume of manufactures, making its economy
unusually dependent on the state of world
markets. Roughly three-quarters of its trade is
with other EU countries. Public debt is nearly
100 of GDP. On the positive side, the government
has succeeded in balancing its budget, and income
distribution is relatively equal. Belgium began
circulating the euro currency in January 2002.
Economic growth in 2001-03 dropped sharply
because of the global economic slowdown, with
moderate recovery in 2004.
There are not many interactions in the streets,
as residential, working and leisure areas tend to
be distinct. Among young people, especially
Francophones, A stone bridge crossing a
canal in Bruges. The north part of Belgium
consists of isolated farms between villages,
while the south tends to contain larger groups of
farms. girls rarely shake hands but kiss other
girls and boys.
Meeting Etiquette
 Greetings entail a degree of formality. A brief
handshake is the common greeting among people who
do not know each other. . Once a relationship is
developed, three kisses on the cheek may replace
the handshake. This is more a kissing of the air
near the person's cheek. Start with the left
cheek and alternate. . Men never kiss other men
they always shake hands.
Gift Giving Etiquette
. If you are invited to a Belgian's house, bring
flowers or good quality chocolates for the
hostess. . Older Belgians may expect flowers to
be unwrapped. . Do not give white chrysanthemums
as they signify death. . Flowers should be given
in an odd number, but not 13. . Liquor or wine
should only be given to close friends. . Gifts
are opened when received.
Dining Etiquette
. Belgians socialize in their homes and
restaurants.. If you receive a written
invitation, the response must be written as well.
. Wait for your host or hostess to introduce you
to the other guests.  Arrive on time.
Punctuality demonstrates respect. . Wait for
your host to tell you where to sit. . Women take
their seats before men. . Table manners are
Continental -- the fork is held in the left hand
and the knife in the right while eating. . Keep
your wrists above the table when eating. . Wait
to see if your host offers a toast before sipping
your drink. . The guest of honour may also give
a toast. . Women may offer a toast. . It is
polite to stand for a toast. . The Flemish raise
their glasses twice during a toast. The glass is
initially raised during the toast and then at the
completion of the toast. . Never leave food on
your plate. It is seen as both rude and wasteful.
. Indicate you have finished eating by laying
your knife and fork parallel on your plate, tines
facing upwards, with the handles facing to the
right. . Belgians take pride in their cuisine,
so praising a meal is a sincere compliment.
"Belgian musical instruments and music"
1 Classical Music 2 Blues and jazz 3 Folk and
other traditional music 4 Chanson 5 Hip-hop 6 Pop
and Rock 6.1 Indie Rock 6.2 Punk 6.3 Metal 7 Trip-
Hop 8 Electronic Music 9 African music
B Baritone saxophone D Doedelzak M Muchosa P Pipas
so S Saxophone Schäferpfeife
The music of Belgium is a cultural crossroads
where Flemish Dutch-speaking and Walloon French-sp
eaking traditions mix with those of German
minorities and of immigrant communities
from Democratic Republic of the Congo and other
distant countries.
Baritone saxophone
Saxophone Schäferpfeife
Dress Etiquette
. Men should wear dark coloured, conservative
business suits with white shirts and silk
ties.  . Women should wear business suits or
conservative dresses.  . Men should only wear
laced shoes, never loafers or other slip-ons, as
they are too casual.  . Polished shoes are an
integral part of a professional image.
Belgians, especially those in the cities, wear
modern Western-style clothes. Men who work in
offices are expected to wear suit jackets to
work. It is generally acceptable for women to
wear slacks to work. The ethnic costumes of the
Flemings and Walloons are seldom worn today. On
some farms women still wear the traditional
dark-colored clothing and white aprons, and men
wear the old-fashioned caps.
Ancient Belgium Dressing Style
Modern Belgium Dressing Style
Modern Wedding in belgium
Ancient Wedding in Belgium
The Cube Brussels
Parliamentarium Brussels
Cheval Noir Brussels
Rue de la Loi Brussels
Mormont House
Grand Hotel Casselbergh
  • Its government is a federal parliamentary
    democracy with a constitutional monarchy.

  • Belgium is divided ethnically into the
    Dutch-speaking Flemings and French-speaking

Ethnic groups Fleming 58, Walloon 31, mixed or
other 11
Centuries of tradition make for great festivals.
Belgium is home to hundreds of festivals,
pageants and carnivals throughout the year. In
fact, it would be difficult to find a time in
Belgium when there isn't some kind of organized
revelry taking place whether it be themed on
music, art, film or exuberant historic
processions that have taken place yearly since
medieval times. A few are simple, but most are
elaborate, with old customs re-enacted and locals
dressed in ornate costumes. At the end of the
day, however, they're all about having a great
time. Below are a few Festival Highlights that
take place throughout Belgium. Some festivals
Ommegang Festival -Brussels Carnival de Binche
Binche , Stavelot (Mid-lent Carnival) -
Stavelot Zinneke Parade - Brussels .

  • Belgium enjoys its fine arts and it has many
    historical museums
  • Musées royaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique is one
    of the most famous museums located in Brussels.
  • The Royal Museum contains over 20,000 drawings,
    sculptures, and paintings, which date from the
    early 15th century to the present.

  • Belgium has a great soccer team.
  • It has a produced many Olympians which have done
  • Cycling is also very popular in Belgium

  • Belgium Cuisine is very popular in Europe.
  • The most famous dish in Belgium is the Belgian

Food in Daily Life.
Bread and potatoes are the traditional staple
foods. Most meals include, pork, chicken, or
beef, and Seafood is popular in the northern part
of the country. The national drink is beer, but
wine is imported in large quantities. In northern
cities, popular dishes include mussels with fries
and waterzooi a broth of vegetables and meat or
fish. Throughout the country, French fries are
eaten with steaks or minced raw meat. Cooking is
traditionally done with butter rather than oil
there is also a high consumption of dairy
products. Immigration has ensured a diversity of
"ethnic" restaurants and is gradually changing
the eating habits of the residents in culturally
mixed areas.
Food Customs at Ceremonial Occasions.
Christmas is an occasion for large family meals
with grandparents and cousins. There are many
other occasions for long meals at public and
private celebrations, such as weddings, funerals,
and the days devoted to city and parish saints.
Pastries are associated with religious and civil
occasions. At Christmas, people eat sweet bread
in the form of the child Jesus at Easter,
children are told that eggs are dropped in the
gardens by flying churchbells and sugar beans
are distributed to those who visit a young
  • Belgium culture is very unique and Belgium is a
    great tourist attraction.
  • If you are looking for something new you should
    go there.

(No Transcript)