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New York City – The Cultural Capital of the World

New York City – The Cultural Capital of the World


Arguably one of the greatest cities in the world, New York, is the epitome of what a developed, cosmopolitan city should be like. The most populous city in the United States of America and one of the most populous in the world, New York has a charm that has attracted millions of people from all parts of the world to its wonderful shores. Everyone wants to be lucky enough to be able to visit this city of tall skyscrapers, giant parks, lovely seashore and the Statue of Liberty. Being the world center of trade, commerce, finance, culture, fashion and art what New York does today the World does tomorrow. New York has been the symbol of Western philosophy, prosperity and grandeur helping it become a truly global city in every sense of the phrase.

Compared to some of the other cities in the world the history of New York is relatively new but its importance has in no way been diminished by that fact. In the pre-colonial era the region in which the city of New York is situated today was inhabited by the Native Americans known as Algonquian, the first European to step foot upon the New York harbor was Giovanni De Verrazano was a Florentine explorer his visit was succeeded by other European travelers looking for a way into the Pacific Ocean which ultimately led to the establishment of the first colony on the New York shores by the Dutch traders who had earlier named it New Netherland. The city underwent numerous transformations in its history changing nationalities from the Dutch to the British in the process. It was christened ‘New York’ in 1664 when it was occupied by the British and has held that name ever since.



The modern history of the New York City has been characterized by the mass influx of immigrants from mostly European countries during the nineteenth and the twentieth century which in a way has helped the city attain the honor of being one of the most diverse cities in the world. This confluence of cultures, identities and languages enabled the city to emerge, on the foundation of its solid economic and industrial development, as a truly global city which could satisfy the aspirations of millions of people embraced by it something it has been doing even today. New York is perhaps one of the most well known cities of the world with many of its famous monuments, bridges and iconic destinations etched in the memory of millions around the world.


The New York Metropolitan Area consists of five parts namely, Brooklyn, Bronx, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island which together make the one giant city home to an estimated population of eighteen million people. The city’s skyline is perhaps one of the most readily identified sights in the world with hundreds of buildings touching the sky among them the prominent being the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, the Rockefeller Building and the One World Trade Center which have at various times in their history been the tallest buildings in the world.


The tag of being the cultural capital of the world comes naturally to New York City as culture seems to run in the air. The city through its rich history has been the center of many cultural movements in American history such as the Harlem renaissance which brought African-American literature to the forefront of mainstream media, the Jazz movement of the 1940s and 1950s were influential in the popularity of the genre, expressionism in the 50s and is also the birthplace of the Hip-Hop movement which has celebrated the city in its music widely. The city has been widely displayed in popular media and is a center of arts, film and theatre with names such as Broadway and the NYU Film School needing no introduction. The Times Square intersection which leads to the chain of forty theatres together known as the Broadway is in many ways the epicenter of world theatre and cinema with some of the greatest artists of the modern era displaying their work. 

Statue of Liberty seen from the Circle Line ferry, Manhattan, New York


Besides being the greatest city on the planet New York City is also one of the most active and frequented tourist destination in the world with the number of tourists coming into the city touching the mark of fifty million and above since 2011. Being the cultural, financial and media center of the world people from all parts of the world are attracted by the grandeur, charm and magnificence of this wonderful city. Some of the major tourist destinations in the city being the New York Harbor’s Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Rockefeller Center, Central Park, Times Square and the Yankee Stadium. Regional events such as the St. Patrick Day’s Parade, Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade and the free performances at Summer time are also great tourist attractions. The City of New York holds within it the dreams of millions of its inhabitants and is a treasure of the world which will continue to enthrall travelers for ages.

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