Today I was reminded how smiling for photos is such a Western habit. I was browsing through photos of this woman and her son in India.
They were beautiful photos, and they were wearing such great clothing, but in every single picture they were scowling. Not just a timid non-smiling sort of face. No! These were actual, full-on glares and scowls!
I don’t think they were annoyed at having their picture taken. Far from it – they stood stiffly and in what looked like their best clothing. I guess “saving face” is very important in that culture, so dignity is to be upheld at all costs.
Fast forward to some of my friends here in the U.S. They make faces, dance and gawk in frozen smiles whenever a camera comes out.
How can we all still be human beings and act so different?