RECENT TRENDS IN CULTURAL
Dept of Geography & Disaster Management
WHAT IS CULTURE?
“Culture is The Sum of All Learned Behaviour of People
Reflected in The Way of Life.”
Culture is a Latin word derived from Cultura mean
cultivation. This word first used by Roman orator Cicero.
Culture is integrated pattern of human knowledge, belief and
behavior that is both is a result of and integral to the human
capacity of learning and transmitting knowledge to
Culture thus consists of language, ideas, beliefs, customs,
taboos, codes, institutions, tools, techniques, works of arts,
rituals, ceremonies and symbols. It has plays a crucial role
in human evolution.
ARE YOU A TABOO?
Do you eat pork/beef?
Have you ever kissed in public?
Should you have more than one wife
Do you eat with your left hand?
Do you eat fertilized duck eggs?
Do you wear shoes in the house?
Have you ever talked back to an
NOTES ON CULTURAL
Learned. The process of
learning one‘s culture is
―enculturation.‖ Culture is not
merely passively absorbed,
but rather taught and learned
by agentive individuals with
differing levels of power.
Members of a
particular society have their
culture in common.
Patterned. People in a given
society live and think in
distinctive and describable
means of constant and ongoing
social interaction, individuals
create, recreate, and change the
nature of a particular culture.
Those within a
particular culture possess a
Arbitrary. Culture is not based
on natural laws but rather is
created by human beings.
Internalized. Culture is habitual,
taken for granted, and perceived
CULTURE AND GEOGRAPHY
Cultural geography is the study of cultural products and
norms and their variations across and relations to spaces and
places. It focuses on describing and analyzing the ways
language, religion, economy, government and other cultural
phenomena vary or remain constant, from one place to
another and on explaining how humans function spatially.
Cultural geography is the study of product and
norms and there variation across and relation to spaces and
Cultural geography is define as the study of the
patterns and interactions of human culture both material and
non-material, its evolution, culture oriented space,
CULTURES AND ENVIRONMENT
Determinism - human events
can be entirely explained by the
effects of the environment
Cultural Ecology :is two-way
relationship. Cultural Ecology is
the study of the cause-andeffect interplay between cultures
and the physical environment
Theory (Toynbee) : a difficult
environment causes people to
build a civilization. People need
the challenge of a difficult
environment. Weather of the
middle latitudes led to more
determined and driven work
CULTURES AND ENVIRONMENT
influences, but does not
control, human events,
choices and constraints
are based on cultural,
economic, political and
―There is no
“Nature does not drive a
EVOLUTION OF CULTURAL GEOGRAPHY
Though the first traces of the study of different nations and cultures
on Earth can be dated back to ancient geographers such
as Ptolemy or Strabo, cultural geography as academic study firstly
emerged as an alternative to the environmental determinist theories
of the early Twentieth century, which had believed that people and
societies are controlled by the environment in which they develop.
environmental classifications, cultural geography became interested
in cultural landscapes.
The Father of Cultural Geography
Carl Ortwin Sauer
(December 24, 1889 – July 18, 1975)
The concept was led by Carl O. Sauer.
Sauer defined the landscape as the
defining unit of geographic study. He
saw that cultures and societies both
developed out of their landscape, but
also shaped them too. This interaction
between the 'natural' landscape and
humans creates the 'cultural landscape.
CREATING CULTURAL LANDSCAPES
The Earth’s Surface As Modified By Human Action
MODERN CULTURAL GEOGRAPHY
Many Ideas was brought from RATZAL‘S Anthropogeographie.
This branch of geography has influenced two group of Geographers
a) French Regional Geography School
b) Cultural Landscape School (Berkley School of California, USA)
major tradition of Cultural Geography in the 20th Century has been Americans, the
courses in cultural geography common in USA and Canada.
Relatively rare in European Geographical Teaching outside Germany.
Cultural Geography in Europe was developed in English Speaking world by Carl O. Sauer.
In India it is relatively New Branch. A.B. Mukerji Student of Sauer was the Pioneer.
Sauer's work was highly Qualitative and descriptive and was surpassed in the 1930s by
the Regional Geography of Richard Hartshorne, followed by the Quantitative Revolution.
Cultural geography was generally sidelined, though writers such as David Lowenthal continued
to work on the concept of landscape.
THEMES IN CULTURAL GEOGRAPHY
1. Cultural Ecology
2. Culture Realm
3. Landscape Studies
4. Cultural Interaction
5. Cultural Diffusion
Ecology is two-way relationship between Organism and
Environment. Cultural Ecology is the study of the causeand-effect interplay between cultures and the physical
To what extent does the environment affect culture?
To what extent does culture rework the environment?
CULTURE REGIONS/ REALMS
Cultural Regions is a distinct, culturally discrete spatial unit;
where certain cultural norms prevail.
Types of Cultural Regions:
A area inhabited by peoples who have one or more cultural trait in
common. Ex: Bengali spoken Region.
Cultural region also depend on multiple related traits. Ex: An Eskimo
culture region might depend on language, religion, type of economy, type
of social organization and typical form of Dwellings.
Denotes an area that has been organized to function politically, socially or
economically. Ex: Newly formed Telengana State. TTAADC, Tripura.
Formal cultural region is abstract rather than concrete but functional
cultural region is not culturally Homogeneous.
Traditional Rural Formal Culture Regions
of North America
FORCES THAT STABILIZE CULTURE REALMS
Despite diffusion, cultures remain fixed
Studies the past and how geographic distributions have
How people have interacted with their environment, and
created the cultural landscape.
Historical Consciousness (self reflection on history)
Fixed Assets (Infrastructure)
Values - Preserve key aspects of culture
Passed down from generation to generation
Aerial view of Denver. Can you see any boundary zones?
A culture complex is a closely
related set of culture traits
Some links are historical
Some links are causal
urban culture tolerance of
CULTURES CHANGE IN TWO WAYS:
an important role
externally by borrowing
of cultural elements
from one society by
members of another
Cultural Diffusion –
process of spreading
Assimilation – process
from which radiated
and ideologies that
change the world
Hearth & Diffusion
Cultural Interaction is when two
or more cultures of different
origin interact with one another.
development when interaction is
in a positive way.
The process of spread of cultural attributes from Cultural
Hearth to new places.
In today’s world there are different cultures which are
coming in contact with each other either in one way or the
other. Cultural diffusion involves the spreading out of a
culture among a greater population. It can also include the
distribution, intentional or not, of cultural traits or cultural
behaviour from a particular locale to other places.
One of the important goal of Modern Cultural
Geography is to analyse the diffusion pattern.
When, from Where, Why, and How one Culture
traits is diffusing from its hearth over new spaces.
TRADE & CULTURAL DIFFUSION
Triggers change - Important force
Trade, economy, and culture
Part of Economic Geography
Study of how various people make
a living, how economies develop,
Export surplus, Import Luxuries
WAR AND CULTURE
Introduce New Culture
New Social Formation
New Cultural Rituals
Destruction of Old Culture
Change in Cultural
New Ideology, Norms,
Cultures that preserve
traditions – often bound by
distinctive, religion, nationality, or
Rural, cohesive, conservative,
largely self-sufficient group,
homogeneous in custom
Strong family or clan structure and
highly developed rituals
Tradition is paramount — change
comes infrequently and slowly
Urban folk cultures
Immigrant groups – preserving
Culture of people who embrace
innovation and conform to
Food, clothing, items that are
―Mass taste‖ = some loss of
individuality and cultural identity
Marketing of popular culture
Often highly individualistic and
groups are constantly changing
Money based economy prevails
Replacing folk culture in
industrialized countries and many
Exchange of cultural features
that results when groups
come into continuous
Immigrants adapt to cultural
change resulting from contact
with the dominant group by
using one of four strategies:
A cultural divide is "a boundary in society
that separates communities whose social
economic structures, opportunities for
success, conventions, styles, and norms are
so different that they have substantially
A cultural divide is the virtual barrier caused
by cultural differences, that hinder
interactions, and harmonious exchange
between people of different cultures.
For example, avoiding eye contact with a
superior shows deference and respect in
East Asian cultures, but can be interpreted
as suspicious behavior in Western cultures.
Culture of the Entire Globe Affected Once More When……
Creation of stock
Multiplied energy for
New cities, factories,
and town sprang up
USA at Political
World at a
European ways are superior
Christianity a major catalyst
Economic & military
Reference Group Behavior
(desire to belong)
Wealthy buy Western
Young adopt western
Media & TV increase
rate of diffusion
9/11 Ripple Effect
Negative views of
(Europe & U.S.)
Spread of U.S. Culture
DO YOU KNOW THE ORIGIN OF THESE
Me Also Don’t Know.........
Change in Thinking
Social Values & Moral
Mohammedan peoples of Middle-East
worldwide which is called ‗Jehadh’ by
them. It is nothing but a struggle in
their own way to preserve their
diffusion of western culture among
WHY CULTURAL GEOGRAPHY???
Individuals and communities have their have their own values,
meanings, customs and knowledge system that affirms identity and
diversity and play a key role in sustainable livelihoods. However, such
features have been frequently ignored in developmental planning.
Geographers apply the cultural ideas and try to explain all sorts of
man-made spatial system.
Cultural Geography demonstrates the significance of understanding
the interface between Culture, Community, Livelihood, Sustainability
, Planning and Development.
WHY CULTURAL GEOGRAPHY???
Survival for the FITTEST......
I think the Greatest innovation among the
theories of Social Science.........
In a New Environment....
Animals survives through Physical
We with our CULTURE........
Ahamed, A. (1999); Social Geography; Rawat Publications; Jaipur.
Bhattacharyya, D.C. (2010); Sociology; Vijoya Publishing House; Kolkata.
Hamnett, C. (1996):Social Geography: A Reader, Arnold, London
Husain, M. (1994); Human Geography; Rawat Publications; Jaipur.
Norton, W. (2000) : Cultural Geography, Oxford University Press, New York
Peet, R.(2004): Modern Geographical Thought, Blackwell Publishers, Massachusett, USA
Robbins, R.H. (2001): Cultural Anthropology, Thomson & Wardsworth, Belmont, USA
Sen, J. (2011); A Text Book of Social and Cultural Geography; Kalyani Publishers; New
Vincent, J. & Del, C.J.(2009): Social Geography: A Critical Introduction, Willey Blackwell,
West Sussex, UK