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Culture Chapter 3.

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Presentation on theme: "Culture Chapter 3."— Presentation transcript:

1 Culture Chapter 3

2 What Is Culture? Culture: Totality of learned, socially transmitted customs, knowledge, material objects, and behavior Includes ideas, values, customs, and artifacts of groups of people

3 What is Culture? Material culture – physical or technological aspects of our daily lives Nonmaterial culture - beliefs

4 Non Material Culture Values – culturally defined standards which serve as broad guideline for social living Beliefs- specific statements which people hold to be true

5 Non Material Culture Norms – rules and expectations by which society guides the behavior of its members Mores – norms that are widely observed and have great moral significance Folkways – norms for routine, casual interaction

6 What is the purpose of culture?
Our major mode of adaptation Sets limits on behavior and guides us along predictable paths Becomes internalized Doxa –things so deeply internalized that they come to be seen as “natural”

7 Characteristics of Culture
Culture is shared uniquely Culture is learned Cultural transmission – passing of cultural traits from one generation to the next

8 Characteristics of Culture
Culture is based on symbols Symbol – anything that carries a particular meaning recognized by people who share culture Language – a system of symbols that allows people to communicate with each other Language is our most important symbolic system Ensures the continuity of culture Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis – people perceive the world through the cultural lens of language

9 Characteristics of Culture
Culture is integrated Cannot change one element without impacting another Cultural integration – close relationship among various elements of a cultural system Cultural lag – period of maladjustment when on element of culture changes and disrupts a system Change caused by Innovation – introducing a new idea or object Invention – creating new elements Discovery – understanding an idea not fully understood before Diffusion – spread of cultural traits

10 Culture and Society Society is the largest form of human group
Common culture simplifies day-to-day interactions Culture influences human behavior

11 Cultural Universals Cultural universal: certain common practices and beliefs that all societies have developed Many adaptations to meet essential human needs Murdoch listed cultural universals but they are expressed differently from culture to culture

12 Ethnocentrism Ethnocentrism: Tendency to assume that one’s own culture and way of life represents the norm or is superior to others Our view of the world is dramatically influenced by the society in which we were raised

13 Cultural Relativism Cultural relativism: People’s behaviors from the perspective of their own culture Different social contexts give rise to different norms and values

14 Cultural Diversity High culture – cultural patterns that distinguish a society’s elite Popular culture – cultural patterns that are widespread among a society’s population Subcultures – cultural patterns that distinguish some segment of a society’s population

15 Cultural Diversity Counterculture – cultural patterns that strongly oppose those widely accepted in society

16 Technology Gerhard Lenski - “Cultural information about the ways in which the material resources of the environment may be used to satisfy human needs and desires.”

17 Culture and the Dominant Ideology
Dominant ideology: Set of cultural beliefs and practices that help maintain powerful interests, including: Social interests Economic interests Political interests

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