Paddington Bear is a fictional children literature novel depicting an immigrant bear from Peru a South American country written by Michael Bond. The novel main characters depict the cultural aspects of the people of Imperial British Empire which includes their language, social interactions and their manners among other cultural aspects.
Paddington is the name given to the immigrant bear that the Brown family find sitting at Paddington Railway station. Paddington has just arrived from Peru sent by his Aunt Lucy from the “Darkest Peru”. He has a tag around his neck written “Please look after this bear. Thank you” (Bond 10). The Browns assume the responsibility of taking care of him and take him home with them.
British manners are conservative as is brought out in this novel but can be said to be of very high standards. In the novel, they rarely address one another by their first names and always include titles like Miss, Mr., and Mrs., before the surnames. Even Paddington is addressed as Mr. Brown despite his foreign status (Bond 67). Mr. Gruber particularly always makes it a point to address Paddington as Mr. Brown, using the surname of the family that harbors him.
The British use English as their language in everyday interactions. The manner in which they use English is rather refined and formal even in their social interactions. They take considerable measure to ensure that their language is not corrupted by foreigners whom they fully assimilate into their system. They even go an extent of naming foreigners with English names they consider appropriate rather than addressing the immigrants with their given names. For instance, the Brown family decided to name “Pastuso” Paddington a name that sounds more British (Bond 90). They in general value their language.
The British are also very structured in their social interactions. Every institution including the family is organized in a structured manner with conventions that must be followed by all I this society. The society is rather patriarchal as the husband or the men are the ones who make most of the decisions in this particular society. It is the husband, Mr. Henry Brown who decides that the bear would be named Paddington. Considering the manner in which Paddington adapts to this society, is it logical to assume that the British are a dominant and non accommodative of foreign cultures?
In response to the first post, the Browns would still have treated Paddington in the same manner as they treated Paddington if he were a real child. They would have been even more compassionate if Paddington was human despite his origin. The Browns did not take up the responsibility of taking care of Paddington because he was a bear but because they were responding to the message written on the tag around Paddington’s neck. The sales man cannot be said to be rude, he might have just acted out of surprise as it not an everyday occurrence to see a bear accompanying humans on a shopping escapade.
In the second posting, the assertion that the Browns disrespected the bear by assuming that his name was too long is unfounded. It is Paddington who claims that his name is too difficult for them to understand. This might be satirical though as they later learn and understand his real name. If the Browns never had any respect for the bear or Peru, then they would not have take Paddington home and given him a place to stay in. It is true that the British Empire spread across the world hence the saying that the sun never sets on the British Empire. Though they in same way dominated and suppressed other cultures, they strived to understand them even going to an extent of learning their languages in order to try and eliminate those that seemed barbaric. The Empire is still much alive in language and other cultural aspects though in collaboration with other world cultures. The saying the sun never sets on the British Empire still holds true to date.
Bond, Michael. A Bear Called Paddington. New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2012. Print.