Where does the true culture of a ……….. culture, lie? Or is it of a nation, of a country, of a people, of a language, even? When we speak of Hispanic culture, its roots are surely in the Iberian Peninsula, but must all manifestations of it be found there? Is English culture found only in England?
If by “English culture” or “Spanish culture”, we mean the culture in England or Spain as it is currently expressed, then no doubt we need to restrict ourselves to those locations b/c it is location we are talking about, i.e. how do the people at latitude X, longitude Y behave? If we are talking about some sort of essential Hispanic culture, English culture, Japanese culture, Yoruba culture, Russian culture, etc. then we have to broaden the scope.
The Romantic version says that only in England do people speak the real language, only in Spain will we find the true essence of Hispanic culture, etc. There is an anthropological notion of deep culture which says that as a culture radiates outward, it changes in response to what it find out there, and to find the original cultural expressions, one must find the deep culture, usually in the center of the culture area or in isolated places. The language known as “deep Igbo” or “deep Navaho” is found where traditions have been passed on intact and people do not second-guess themselves in response to outside influences.
However, expressions of a culture might be found anywhere that culture has been taken. One of my romantic takes on English culture is the old English inn. Could an English-descended family in Argentina not have preserved an old inn following that tradition, where only the liquor license is printed in Spanish? If you want to hear the formal/informal distinction of Spanish Usted/tu preserved, go to Mexico, not Spain. The same for saunas and public baths, clog dancing, the subjunctive, and all kinds of food. Much of that may have been lost in the “old country” but preserved in Akron.