2 Why must we understand culture? To avoid misunderstandings from a lack of knowledgeExample: Eleanor who moves here from Hong KongEveryone is born into a cultureIts inherited by parents/grandparentsIt shapes our livesTo avoid being ethnocentric; stopping the label of the “ugly American”Ethnocentrism – means to judge other cultures negatively & narrow-mindedlyWe need to avoid this if possibleWHO has culture?Culture: all the things that make up a people’s entire way of life.Example: Eleanor, a Chinese girl from Hong Kong would not look at her teacher, and the teacher got mad. The teacher reprimanded her. Eleanor was confused, didn’t the teacher know it is disrespectful to look directly at a person of authority? Even her father does not look at his boss directly in the eye. She did not know that Americans consider it rude to not look them in the eye.Culture: is reflected in what we eat, clothes we wear, jokes we tell, etc… also affects what we think is ugly or beautiful, what is right or wrong, and our goals for future.
3 Elements of Culture Social Organization Customs and Traditions Which family structure termwould be used todescribe everyone, including:your parents, siblings,grandparents, cousins,Aunts/uncles, friends, etc…Social OrganizationFamily structureNuclear familyExtended familySocial classesBorn into your class in the pastToday, there is more opportunity for social mobilityCustoms and TraditionsRules of behaviorLanguage is the cornerstone of cultureIdentity, expressionNuclear family=wife, husband, and their childrenExtended fam=several generations living in one household.Less common in industrialized societies.Examples: common in many societies. Farming culture, grandparents look after the young while older children and adults work land.Family members many times pool their savings to buy a tractor/send child to school.Respect for elders- strong-seen as very wise.Who exercises authority in household?US-many times it’s the man.For centuries, most cultures families were patriarchal-run by the males.In some African & Nat. American cultures, families are matriarchal-authority lies with females.Presently, things are changing-with 2 income households, authority is trying to be shared.How do you change your social status?Obtaining good educationEarning more moneyMarrying into a familyRules of behavior-Some affect everyday life=what to wear, how to be politeEat with chopsticks or forkSleep on bed or hammockGreetings with hand shake or bowOther ways to enforce behavior- social pressure (appropriate clothes for a party)Written laws express most important rules of right and wrong.
4 Religion Cultures usually share religious beliefs. Why has religionbeen the causeof so many wars?Cultures usually share religious beliefs.Religion helps people answer basic questions about the meaning and purpose of life.Also supports the values a group of people consider important.History has played a central role in shaping the religion of a society
5 Religious diversity List of major religions: Monotheism Polytheism HinduismChristianityIslamBuddhismJudaismMonotheismWorship of one godPolytheismWorship of more than one god.Religion spreads…Religious differences still cause major problems around the world today.Religion spreads: missionaries, conquering armiesReligious differences:Struggles are not new-have lasted thousands of years.Ex: northern Ireland-fighting btwn Catholics and protestants.Balkans-fighting between Muslims and ChristiansEthnic rivalries is another reason for these struggles.
6 Forms of government Why are they formed? Government: people or person who holds power in a societysociety’s laws and political institutionsWho organizes governments?Types of government:Democracy – a government where the power rests in the hands of the people. Govt. can act only with their consent.Autocracy - ruler or small group of rulers who hold unlimited power. Usually rule by force.Note: There are more specific types of government within these 2 categoriesWhy are they formed?Provide for their needs:Keeping order in societyProtecting society from outside threats.People organize govt. in many different ways.Sometimes-like in early history, when people lived in small groups, government was simple. (chief or elder made decisions based on culture’s beliefs and customs)As time went on…governments became complex. With the large populations came more and more complexity.Now there are nations who are based on written code of law. Governments do many jobs- collect taxes, enforce laws, administer justice.