West It is a concept that derives from Latin occĭdens and that refers, in different ways and with different scopes, to West . When it is written with an initial capital letter, it specifically mentions the Cardinal point . For example: "The captain ordered that we go to the West to avoid sandbars", "I don't know which way to go: in the West, we have the mountains, while several rivers appear to the East".
The idea of the West can also refer to what lies west of something or in the West zone from a place: "The Muslim population is grouped in the west of the city: there are several mosques there", “The western part of this province is full of soybean fields”.
The most frequent use of the notion, however, is used to name the group of countries that maintain a similar cultural tradition and whose systems of economic, political and social organization are similar. In this sense, the world is usually divided into the west and east, as can be done geographically.
Although there are multiple interpretations of what is understood by the West, it is generally included within the group the nations where the religion catholic or Protestant , he capitalism and the democracy . These characteristics, however, are not exclusive, as there are countries that do not meet any of these requirements but, however, are included within the Western world.
What is produced in the west or linked to it is described as western . One can speak, therefore, of western literature, western music, etc.
The region of Western Europe, which also receives the name of Western Europe is located in the western part of the continent, over the Atlantic Ocean. In any case, this concept has other meanings and is generally used to refer to those States that during the Cold War manifested communist positions.
Subsequently, this term has been used to refer to countries that have a democratic system of government and maintain a mixed economy (free market but where the State also has a strong participation and intervention). As of today, however, this definition is becoming outdated since there are many countries that have these characteristics and do not belong to Western Europe.
The division of Europe into Eastern and Western has a historical rather than geographical reason. At the end of World War II a map was raised that politically divided into two sharply. Countries grouped together regardless of geographic location , taking into account their political affinities. Greece, for example, although it is located in the eastern part of Europe, is part of the countries that make up Western Europe; while Lithuania, which is further east, counts as Oriental. Broadly speaking we can say that the Western part is made up of those more industrialized countries; and its members, the vast majority, are part of the European Union.
If we wanted to make a specific geographical division, Europe is divided into four: Western, Northern, Southern and Eastern Europe . It is important to note, however, that this classification is not always used in this way because of this, it is important to know the way in which the speaker is referring to the continent; according to its political division or taking into account the geographical division.
It is worth mentioning that many times the concept of the West is used in contrast to that of the East to refer to a more advanced culture where democracy and social equality reign; However, this is nothing more than a prejudice that is disclosed to belittle the culture of the peoples of the East.