2Multicultural of the United States The most multicultural of the worldDrawn from the Nation’s history of immigrationPreferences and tastes differ by cultureMore/fewer childrenHonor of elderly/youngPeaceful/warlikeWhat is polite, rude, beautiful, ugly, etc
3What is CultureValues, beliefs, behavior and material objects that together form a people’s way of lifeOur link to the past and our guide to the futureNonmaterial Culture—the ideas created by members of a societyMaterial culture—the physical things created by members of a society
4Culture ShockPersonal disorientation when experiencing an unfamiliar way of life
5Culture Shock—Even in the US A trip to the Amish countryside in OhioA New Yorker visits a small southern townOther examples?
6QuestionWhat specific practices or social patterns familiar to us in the United States that would shock people from another society?
7Humanity—No natural Way Since humans have the capacity to think, there is no one way for them to build a culture or actOnly humans rely on culture rather than instinct to create a way of life and ensure our survival
8Culture and Human Intelligence From primates of 12 million years agoAnimals with largest brains/body sizeClosest relativeHomo Sapiens of 40,000 years agoPeople looked more or less like ourselves
9River Valley Civilizations Permanent settlementsFashioning the natural environment for ourselvesIraqEgypt
10Culture, Nation, and Society Culture—a shared way of lifeNation—political entity, with borders—but not necessarilySociety—the organized interaction of people who typically live in a nation or some specific territoryThe US is both a nation and a society
11How Many cultures in the US Census Bureau list 200 languages100 languages spoken in the LA school system7000 languages spoken globallyBut half are spoken by 10,000 peopleNumber spoken commonly is decliningHigh technology, communication, international migration, expanding global economy accounts for decline
12The elements of Culture SymbolsLanguagesValuesNormsetc
13SymbolsAnything that carries a particular meaning recognized by people who share a cultureWordWhistle (verb)GraffitiRaised fistFlagWinking the eyeInterest, understanding, or insult
14New Symbols are Created All the Time :-() I am shocked:- I am smiling:-II I am angry with youEtc
15Symbols and Culture Shock The inability to “read” meaning in new surroundingsNot sure how to actFearWhat about seeing people burning the flag
16Differences People in parts of Asia roast dogs for dinner We may offend people in India by asking for a hamburger because cows are sacredA fur coat may represent success or inhumanity to animalsConfederate Flag—regional pride/history or a symbol of racial oppression
17Language Helen Keller (1880-1968) Language Cultural Transmission Blind and deafBrought to understanding through sign languageBecame famous educatorLanguageA system of symbols that allows people to communicate with one anotherCultural TransmissionThe process by which one generation passes culture to the next
18Literacy The US—about 10% are illiterate Low income countries—about 50% are illiterateLanguage sets humans apart as the only creatures who are self-conscious, aware of our limitations, and ultimate mortality—able to dream and hope for the future and better
19Does Language Shape Reality? Edward Sapir and Benjamin Whorf—yes!Symbols are distinctive and build realityLanguage has words or expressions not found in any other symbolic systemA single idea may “feel differently” in another language
20Values and BeliefsValues: Culturally defined standards that people use to decide what is desirable, good, beautiful, and that serves as broad guidelines for social living. Values support beliefsBeliefs: Specific statements that people hold to be trueDifferent—values are more abstract and beliefs more specific
21Values and Beliefs (cont) Culturally mosaic nationThe US differs from Asian countries like Japan and China—more culturally homogeneous
22Key Values of U.S. Culture Equal opportunityAchievement and successMaterial comfortActivity and workPracticality and efficiencyProgressScienceDemocracy and free enterpriseFreedomRacism and group superiority
23Values Sometimes in Conflict Do our values of equal opportunity conflict with our ways we view race and sex?Do we view values in a hierarchy?Are we becoming a “Culture of Victimization?”Where has rugged individualism gone?Where is accepting our responsibilities gone?
24Values: A Global Perspective Higher income countries have different values than lower—Lower:Lower income countries value survivalPhysical safetyEconomic securityTraditional valuesCelebrate the pastFamily, religion, obedience to authority, conformity
25Higher Income Countries IndividualismSelf expressionHigh quality of lifeLifestyleHappinessTolerantDivorceAbortion
26NormsRules and expectations by which a society guides the behavior of its membersProscriptive—what we should not doPrescriptive—what we should doExample: we are expected to applaud at the end of a musical entertainment event but not after a sermon
27Mores (more-rays) and Folkways Mores: norms that are widely observed and have great moral significanceFolkways: norms for routine or casual interactionAppropriate greetingsProper dressDraw a line between the right and rude
28Social ControlMores and folkways make dealings with others more orderly and predictableSocial control—attempts by society to regulate people’s thoughts and behaviorHelp to give people a conscious“Downloading a term paper on the internet” can cuase some guiltMark Twain—people “are the only animals that that blush—or need to.”
29Ideal and Real CultureWe may not make achieve the ideal actions or behavior, but we should strive for it
30Material Culture and Technology Physical human creations called “artifacts”We own 230 vehicles and half bought in recent years were SUVsRugged individualismConsistent with the U.S.
31Material Culture and Technology Technology—Knowledge that people use to make a way of life in their surroundingsThe better the technology, the more people can make a lifeThe better to shape society around them
32Technology Downside Has contributed to unhealthy levels of stress Created weapons capable of destroying mankindAmish of Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Indiana live simple live amid “commercialism and technology run wild”
33New Information Technology and Culture Not so much working with your hands as working with symbolsAbility to speakAbility to writeAbility to computeAbility to designAbility to create
34Computer-Based Economy Generating new cultural ideas, images and products
35Cultural Diversity: Many Ways of Life in One World The U.S. is the most multicultural of all high-incomeJapan, due to historic isolation, is the most monocultural of all high income nationsBetween 1820 and 2003, 69 million people came to our shoresOne million newcomers now arrive each year.
36High Cultural and Popular Culture High culture—cultural patterns that distinguish a society’s elitePopular culture—cultural patters that are widespread among a society’s populationThe text author suggests we may praise high culture more simply because people have more money in that culture—oh, really? What about:Dangers that may exist in more popular cultureUntried new habits that sprang up as just popular, in the culture’s face, hooky actionsJust because it’s different
37SubcultureSubculture—cultural patterns that set apart some segment of a society’s population“chopper” riders (author forgets…now yuppies)Polish AmericansNew England “Yankees”Etc.
38What Kind of Commitment ot Subculture Can set people apart from one another—sometimes referred to as “tribal mentalities” or “Balkanism”Yugoslavia1990s civil war fueled by extreme diversityTwo alphabets, three religions, four languages, five major nationalities, six political republics, absorbing cultures of seven surrounding countriesThe above was a source of pleasing variety but also outright violence
39The “Melting Pot” is Questioned Out of many, oneThe author suggests that one subculture is as good as another—the rich skier in Aspen is equal to the skateboarder in L.A. (can’t a rich skier also be a skateboarder in L.A.?)Therefore, some sociologists prefer to level the playing field by emphasizing multiculturalism
40MulticulturalismAn educational program recognizing the cultural diversity of the United States and promoting the equality of all cultural traditions (how do you do that?)Formally, we defined ourselves through Western (primarily English) cultureHistorical traditions or contemporary diversity—is that the real question?
41EurocentrismThe dominance of European (especially English) cultural patternsBut the country is moving to where people of African, Asian, and Hispanic ancestry will be the majority (really?? Then what about the tendencies to cross-marry, etc)Some educators call for Afrocentrism—emphasizing and promoting African cultural patterns (OK, but what about the Asians, Hispanics and Indians)—or is it really just the loudest voices speaking?
42Multicultural Criticism Divides people by looking at their skin pigment rather than looking at people as individualsIs it better to live, breathe, and “ooze” in the color of one’s skin or is it better to simply accept all people as equals and children of God as made in the image of God.Do we obsess over our differences through the philosophy of multiculturalism rather than embracing each other through the simple faith that we are all seekers of God and the promise of everlasting life?
43Multiculturalism Criticism (cont) Does multiculturalism unify? Or does it d separate us by pointing out divisions and differences among us?Instead of recognizing “truth”, does not multiculturalism interpret truth through the “prism” of race? Or gender?Do we not dissolve into an “African experience” or “Asian experience” instead of a human experience
44Multiculturalism Criticized (cont) What ever happened to Dr. Martin Luther King’s statement that implores people to evaluate people based not upon the color of one’s skin but on the content of one’s character?Are we to study only certain topics and issues from one point of view? How intellectual is that?
45Cultural Change Change remains a constant Today’s students more interested in making money rather than developing a philosophy of life—true?Cultural integration—when one thing changes, the change(s) effects other things.
46Cultural Lag When some things change faster than others Does the laboratory fertilization of an egg with sperm from a stranger change the traditional ideas of motherhood and fatherhood? If yes, then what about adoption?
47Causes of Cultural Change Invention: like the telephone, airplane, and computerDiscovery: a better understanding of something already in existence—such as new elementsDiffusion: the spread of cultural traits from one cultural to another
48Ethnocentrism and Cultural Relativism Confucius: “All people are the same; it’s only their habits that are different”Ethnocentrism: the practice of judging another culture by the standards of one’s own cultureCommon to “come from some place” when evaluating othersBut, there can be conflict
49Cultural Relativism Judging a culture by its own standards Requires opennessRequires putting aside cultural standards known
50Problems—Are Some Cultural Norms Just Plain Wrong? What about the children of Indian and Moroccan families who worked long hoursBefore judging, first ask what do they think about the norm
51A Global Culture The world is flat Everyone is wearing jeans More people are speaking EnglishMigrationCommunicationsEconomy
52The World is Flat Limitations? The author say the advantages go to North America and Europe—really? What about the internet?Poverty sets people apart from othersPeople see cultural differences differently—Harry Potter has more influence in one nation than another
53The Functions of Culture: Structural-Functional Analysis Complex—strategies for trying to meet human needsCultural values bind us togetherThink functionally—why do these people live this way? The Amish?Cultural universals: family, funerals, care of children, etc
54Critical Review—Structural-Functional Emphasizes dominant cultural patternsDownplays change
55Inequality and Culture: Social-Conflict Analysis Link between culture and inequalityAny trait benefits some members more than othersMarx said that man’s social being determines his consciousnessMaterialism verses structural functionalism
56CapitalismServes the interests of the countries wealthy elite. (your author) Really? What about all those who have moved from poor to middle class and middle class to wealthy in this system?Teaches us that the rich work harder and are more deserving—Oh?Disparages economic equality—Oh, how?
57Evolution and CultureSociobiology—a theoretical approach that explores ways in which human biology affects how we create cultureRests on Charles Darwin—natural selection—organisms change over timeAdaptation and survival of the fittestBut—is one race superior to another?
58Culture as a Constraint HabitRacial prejudicesGender discrimination
59Culture As FreedomWe are forced to chose and we make choices—having that freedomWe continue to make and re-makeGood?