Presentation on theme: " Constantly changing Based in large, heterogeneous groups of people Based mainly in urban areas Material goods mass-produced by machines in factories."— Presentation transcript:
Constantly changing Based in large, heterogeneous groups of people Based mainly in urban areas Material goods mass-produced by machines in factories Prevailing money economy More numerous individual relationships, but less personal Weaker family structure Considerable leisure time available to most people Police, army, and courts take the place of family and church in maintaining order
If a single hallmark of popular culture exists, it is change › Words such as growth, progress, fad, and trend crop up frequently in newspapers and conversations › Some people unable to cope with fast change › Vast majority of people in developed countries belong to the popular culture
If a single hallmark of popular culture exists, it is change › We profited greatly in material terms through this transition › Disadvantages become apparent as one moves toward the popular end of the continuum We forfeited much in discarding folkways Popular culture is not superior We weaken both family structure and interpersonal relationships The prominent cultural geographer has said of popular culture “only two (things) would I dislike to give up: inside plumbing and medical advances.”
If a single hallmark of popular culture exists, it is change › Contributions to the spread of popular culture Industrialization Urbanization Rise of formal education Resultant increase in leisure time › All the reasons popular culture spread caused folk culture to retreat
Often Destroys Folk Culture › preserves traditions as museum pieces or tourism gimmicks. Mexican Mariachis Swimming Pool, West Edmonton Mall, Canada
Western Media Imperialism? U.S., Britain, and Japan dominate worldwide media. Glorified consumerism, violence, sexuality, and militarism? U.S. (Networks and CNN) and British (BBC) news media provide/control the dissemination of information worldwide. These networks are unlikely to focus or provide third world perspective on issues important in the LDCs.
Accelerated Resource Use through Accelerated Consumption Furs: minx, lynx, jaguar, kangaroo, whale, sea otters (18 th Century Russians) fed early fashion trends. Consumerism evident in most Western Media fashions, including hip hop and rock and roll. Inefficient over-consumption of Meats; meat-eating pop cultures Mineral Extraction for Machines, Plastics and Fuel New larger housing desires and associated energy and water use. Golf courses use valuable water and destroy habitat worldwide. Pollution: waste from fuel generation and discarded products, plastics, marketing and packaging materials
Without the sign, we would not know if these were houses, apartments, or condos. Their style is no style; a sense of sameness pervades. Nothing sets these structures apart as being in a particular place; this is placelessness
James Kunstler speaks of “geography of nowhere” in describing America › One place become much like another, robbed of its geographical essence › Pervasive influence of a continental or worldwide popular culture
Most effective device for popular culture diffusion Commercial advertising of retail products bombards us visually and orally Using psychology, we are sold products we do not need Popular culture is equipped with the most potent devices and techniques of diffusion ever perfected
Modern advertising is very place-conscious › Products and services are linked to popular, admired places › Example of the “Marlboro Man” and the romanticized American West › Remarkably such techniques work in countries as far away as Egypt
Advertising plays a key role in the diffusion of popular culture. Symbols are important marketing tools and companies aim to get instant recognition for their products. Here a row of former Chinese shop houses has been renovated as a “strip mall.” The signs are international status symbols meaning “American.”
American pop culture is becoming increasingly popular in Asia to the dismay of many traditional parents. How do you think these young Malaysians learn about American products and why are they so much in demand? Where do you think they are manufactured? What signs do you recognize?
Popular cultures of North America, Europe, and Australia have become similar and in constant contact › Americans lineup to hear touring British rock musicians › Rocky Mountain ski resorts are built in Alpine- Swiss architecture › Latest Paris fashions appear in American department stores › Fast-food franchises of McDonalds and Kentucky Fried Chicken diffused to Russia › Motel chains such as Holiday Inn took root in Tibet and other countries
Television has become to popular culture, worldwide, what fire is to folk culture
Television has diffused widely since the 1950s, but some areas still have low numbers of TVs per population Much media is still state-controlled. Ten Most Censored Countries: 1.North Korea 2.Myanmar (Burma) 3.Turkmenistan 4.Equatorial Guinea 5.Libya 6.Eritrea 7.Cuba 8.Uzbekistan 9.Syria 10.Belarus Source: The Committee to Protect Journalists. www.cpj.org.
Perhaps the personal computer and Internet access have created another new type of place Certain words we use imply it has a geography—”Cyberspace” The information superhighway connects not two points, but all points, creating a new sort of place
Does cyberspace contain a geography at all? › Place, as understood by geographers, cannot be created on the net › “Virtual places” lack a cultural landscape and a cultural ecology › Human diversity is poorly portrayed in cyberspace Old people, poor people, the illiterate, and the continent of Africa are not represented On the net, users end up “meeting” people like themselves The breath and spirit of place cannot exist in cyberspace › These are not real places and never can be
Still, cyberspace possesses some geographical qualities › Enhances opportunities for communication over long distances › Allows access to rare data banks › Encourages and speeds cultural diffusion › The Internet helps heighten regional contrasts › Uneven spatial distribution of Internet connections creates a new way people differ