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Insocio lecture 4 culture and society
 

Insocio lecture 4 culture and society

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Credits to my profs

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    Insocio lecture 4 culture and society Insocio lecture 4 culture and society Document Transcript

    • Culture and Society What is society?  A fairly large number of people who live in the same territory, relatively independent of people outside their area and participate in a common culture.  A society is the largest form of human group. It consists of people who share a common heritage and culture. What is Culture?  Is the shared set of values, beliefs, behavioral expectations, and artifacts that comprise the way of life of people Characteristics of Culture  1. Distinguishes one group from another  2. It gives group members a sense of “we-ness”  3. Culture melds past and presents, synthesizing achievements and aspirations.  4. It comprises a complete social heritage. The Interaction of Society and Culture  Culture and society is sometimes used interchangeably, but their precise meanings are different. Culture refers to a SHARED WAY of Life. Society is an organized interaction among people within a geographical or political boundary. Society is composed of interacting people who share the same culture.  Neither society nor culture could exist without the other. Two basic Elements of Culture  Ideas – Non Material Culture  Objects- Material Culture Material Culture All the tangible or physical products that the members of society creates. Two Elements of Material Culture  1. Artifacts- The physical things that the members of a society make when they apply their technology to the physical environment. 1
    •  Artifacts maybe technologically sophisticated or technologically simple.  It is important to remember that newer or more sophisticated is not always better.  2. Technology - Is the body of knowledge that members of a society apply to their physical environment to meet their survival needs. Non Material Culture All the non tangible or non physical products that the members of society creates. Components of Non Material Culture  1. Symbols  2. Language  3. Values  4. Norms a. Folkways b. Mores c. Laws d. Taboos Symbols-  Anything that has been given representational meaning by the members of cultural group.  The meaning given to a single object or action may vary tremendously from culture to culture  The meaning of symbols can also change overtime. Language  The most complex symbolic system in a culture.  Language is a system of patterned sounds, often with corresponding written symbols, that the members of a society use to communicate their thoughts and feelings to one another.  Although every known culture has a spoken language some such as Huaorani of Ecuador, have no written symbols that correspond to their vocalizations.  Language is vital to the preservation of human societies because it is the primary source of Cultural transmission. Cultural Transmission  Process by which culture is passed on from one generation to the next. 2
    •  Language is vital to the preservation of human societies because it is the primary means of cultural transmission. Values  Values are cultural standards or judgments of what is right, good and desirable  Values provide guidepost for daily living in a society and may influence eve routine activities. For example in many Asian countries, spiritual values require that new businesses and buildings be blessed before they open to the public.  Interestingly, values within a culture maybe contradictory. Norms  Are the rules of culture, they tell the members of a culture how they are expected to behave in a given situation.  They tell us what we should do under certain circumstances (prescriptive norms) and what we should not do (proscriptive norms) Types of Norms 1. Folkways - are norms with little moral significance or weaker norms. They are the everyday customs. Violation brings only mild sanction, since adherence to them is not considered essential to the well being of the society. 2. Mores-  Are norms that have great moral significance.  They carry a strong social sanction if violated because the members of a culture consider adherence to them essential to the well-being of the society.  Mores usually apply to everyone, everywhere, all the time. 3. Laws- Are formal mores enacted by legislative body. 4. Taboos – strongly held norms that to violate them is virtually inconceivable. Characteristics of Norms  1. Norms vary not only from culture to culture, but also situationally within a single culture.  2. Norms vary from place to place  3. Norms change over time. Culture shock Anyone who feels disoriented, uncertain, out of place, or even fearful when immersed in an unfamiliar culture. 3
    • Development of Culture Around the World 1. Cultural Change  A. Cultural lag – When changes in one dimension of culture ( typically material culture) out space changes in another dimension of culture (typically nonmaterial culture) B. Discovery – finding and gaining knowledge about something not previously recognized or understood. C. Diffusion – the spread of one’s society’s culture to another. When members of different society come in contact with one another, aspect of one’s society’s culture maybe absorbed or adopted by or forced on the members of the other society. Sample means of diffusion  Internet  Mass media  Military Conquest  Missionary works 2. Globalization- is the worldwide integration of government policies, cultures, social movements, and financial markets through trade and the exchange of ideas. Examples: Christmas in China Call Centers Cheap labors Cultural Diversity • Subculture- is a group within a society’s dominant culture. It shares in some of the dominant culture’s elements, but at the same time, it differentiates itself from the dominant culture in a specific way. • Counter Culture - These group openly reject the dominant culture and may try to change it in fundamental ways, or at least live alternative lifestyles 4
    • Attitudes towards Cultural Diversity Multiculturalism  Emphasizes respect for and appreciation of the cultural contributions, practices and experience of diverse group. Ethnocentrism The idea or belief that one’s own culture or ways of doing things are “right” or “best” thus judging others’ values and practices inferior. Xenocentrism The idea or belief that other culture or way of life is superior than one’s own culture. Cultural Relativism  Refers to judging cultural practices in terms of how well it helps the members of a society meet their survival needs. 5
    • Attitudes towards Cultural Diversity Multiculturalism  Emphasizes respect for and appreciation of the cultural contributions, practices and experience of diverse group. Ethnocentrism The idea or belief that one’s own culture or ways of doing things are “right” or “best” thus judging others’ values and practices inferior. Xenocentrism The idea or belief that other culture or way of life is superior than one’s own culture. Cultural Relativism  Refers to judging cultural practices in terms of how well it helps the members of a society meet their survival needs. 5