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Introduction to Sociology Chapter 2 – “Culture”

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1 Introduction to Sociology Chapter 2 – “Culture”
Roderick Graham

2 Explaining Culture Culture – the ways of thinking, the ways of acting, and the material objects that together form a people’s way of life Culture can be divided into… Nonmaterial culture – ideas Material culture – physical things Culture is shared…and people who interact in a defined territory and share a culture is considered a society.

3 Elements of Culture - Symbols
Symbols – anything that carries a particular meaning recognized by people who share a culture.

4 Symbols can be logos…

5 Symbols can mean social causes

6 Symbols can communicate instructions

7 Symbols remind us of our history and values

8 Symbols can be manipulated because we all know what they are supposed to mean....

9 Artists use symbols…

10 Elements of Culture - Language
Language – a system of symbols that allows people to communicate Through language we can transmit culture. Wisdom over time is passed down through language.

11 Elements of Culture: Norms
Norms – rules and expectations by which a society guides the behavior of its members. There are two types of norms… Mores – norms that are widely observed and have great moral significance. They are taboos. Often breaking norms lead to being outcast or imprisonment (ex. Incest, rape, murder) Folkways – norms of routine or casual interaction (ex. Shaking hands, eating styles, saying excuse me)

12 Elements of Culture: Values and Beliefs
Values – culturally defined standards that people use to decide what is desirable, good, and beautiful and that serve as broad guidelines for social living Beliefs – specific ideas that people hold to be true Values tend to be general, and beliefs tend to be specific. They are linked…your abstract values affect the specific things you believe about the world.

13 Technology and Culture
Norms, symbols, language, values and beliefs are non- material elements of culture Technology is the material elements of culture. Technology is the knowledge that people use to make a way of life in their surroundings

14 Technology and Culture
Hunting and Gathering Horticulture and Pastoralism Agriculture Industry Post-Industrial Information Technology

15 Cultural Diversity Although societies share general cultures (they share similar symbols, norm, values, and language), there is tremendous variety in the types of specific cultures certain groups practice

16 Cultural Diversity – High Culture and Popular Culture
High Culture – Society’s Elite Popular Culture – Widespread in a society

17 Cultural Diversity – Subculture and Counterculture
Subculture – set apart from society Counterculture – strongly oppose wider society

18 Cultural Diversity - Multiculturalism
Multiculturalism – perspective recognizing the cultural diversity of the United States and promoting equal standing for all cultural traditions Why do people think multiculturalism is a good thing?

19 Cultural Diversity – Ethnocentrism and Cultural Relativism
Ethnocentrism – the practice of judging another culture by the standards of one’s own culture Cultural Relativism – the practice of judging a culture by its own standard

20 What are some examples of invention, discovery, and diffusion?
Cultural Change Cultural patterns do not always stay the same…here are some ways they change? Invention – creating new cultural elements Discovery – recognizing new ways to use something already in existence Diffusion – the spread of objects or ideas What are some examples of invention, discovery, and diffusion?

21 END

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