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  1. 1. Defining “culture”and cultural anthropology Credit given to: Howard Culbertson at Southern Nazarene University
  2. 2. • “A few years ago I took a cultural anthropology class at a community college. This class studied people in great detail but never really mentioned what culture was. We assumed we were studying culture, but the [word culture] was never truly defined.” • A student in Global Evangelism class
  3. 3. Cultural Anthropology -- an academic discipline
  4. 4. Cultural Anthropology -- an academic discipline
  5. 5. Cultural Anthropology -- an academic discipline
  6. 6. Cultural Anthropology -- an academic discipline
  7. 7. Cultural Anthropology -- an academic discipline
  8. 8. Culture iswhat makesyou a strangerwhen you areaway fromhome
  9. 9. Defining culture1. Philip Bock – What makes you a stranger when you’re away from home2. Ruth Benedict – learned patterns3. Charles Kraft – Complex, integrated coping mechanism4. Bob Sjogren -- What makes us “us” and them “them”
  10. 10. Viewing culture as successive levels Diagram by Lloyd Kwast
  11. 11. An iceberg as an analogy of culture
  12. 12. From Gary Weaver in Culture, Communication and Conflict: Readings in Intercultural Relations
  13. 13. Culture is a complex, integrated coping mechanism.Culture consists of 1. Learned concepts and behavior 2. Underlying perspectives (worldview) 3. Resulting products • nonmaterial (customs and rituals) • material (artifacts) – Chuck Kraft’s definition
  14. 14. Scattered thoughts about Cultural Anthropology• It’s holistic (as opposed to atomistic or narrow)• It’s comparative – Etic (from outsider’s vantage point) – Emic (from an insider’s vantage point• Perspectives run the gamut from relativism to ethnocentrism• You will get your hands dirty (fieldwork)
  15. 15. • What makes up a culture?• What are those learned patterns and behaviors?
  16. 16. Cultural UniversalsGeorge Murdock’s 70 cultural universals
  17. 17. age-grading ethics housing population policyathletic sports ethno-botany hygiene postnatal carebodily adornment etiquette incest taboos pregnancy usagescalendar faith healing inheritance rules property rightscleanliness training family joking propitiation ofcommunity feasting kin groups supernatural beingsorganization fire-making kinship nomenclature puberty customscooking folklore language religious ritualco-operative labor food taboos law residence rulescosmology funeral rites luck / superstitions sexual restrictionscourtship games magic soul conceptsdancing gestures marriage status differentiationdecorative art gift-giving mealtimes surgerydivination government medicine tool-makingdivision of labor greetings obstetrics tradedream interpretation hair styles penal sanctions visitingeducation hospitality personal names weather controleschatology weaving
  18. 18. 9 cultural universals
  19. 19. 1. Place and time
  20. 20. 2. Family life
  21. 21. 3. Economics
  22. 22. 4. Food, clothing, shelter and transportation See note
  23. 23. Note: “Drives” vs. culture• Hunger is a basic human psycho-biological drive.• How that hunger is satisfied involves all kinds of cultural things (what is eaten, how it is prepared, how it is eaten . . .).
  24. 24. 5. Communication
  25. 25. 6. Government
  26. 26. 7. Arts and recreation
  27. 27. 8. Education
  28. 28. 9. Quest for the supernatural
  29. 29. Sociocultural change
  30. 30. Is it worth my time?• Question: Why study cultural anthropology?• Answer: To enrich a college education by giving new insights about ourselves and our own cultural context as well as stretching our imaginations.