The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

 

In today society if you are not above average or what is conceived by others to be ‘normal’, based on dimensions such as culture, politic, social and economic, you are considered ‘less than’ or abnormal, you face exclusion from a society that you were born into.

Examples of minority groups are the LGBTQ+ community, Social class, disability, gender and race. Within this assignment we will be assessing the extent to which mainstream psychology has contributed to the exclusion of marginalized groups, then comparing with how features and research within critical psychology is able to make reparations to those excluded, focusing on Social class specifically the working/lower class, then concluding with final observations of research found within to the assignment.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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The Social class system affects many aspects of the human experience, these categories offer an identity and stereotype to individuals without a choice. Social class is known as a group of individuals who occupy similar characteristic, traits as well as socio-economic indicators and the socio-cultural aspects of the individual’s life (Rothman, 2017). These economic markers that provide part of the decision are based on, job title, education, earning, and where they live (Cole, 2017) Alongside these indicators researcher believe that cultural capital offers insight into how these groups are labelled, this “currency” is the idea that those with understanding of behaviours and knowledge of the upper class or those seen as dominant in their culture hold, are able to move upwards, reflecting in the clothes or style of the individual, intellect, education and rhetoric (Bourdieu, 1986).The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
The core concept of the social class system is hierarchy, by being closer to the top, the more power and autonomy you have with having greater access to resources such as healthcare and education (Montague, 1951). Within this social class system there are often three to four level that one would be placed into, at the top of the “pecking order” a metaphor used to describe the hierarchy of status, is the Upper class this group will be filled with those wealthiest, a graduate degree within a job such as doctor, lawyer or politician for example, those who hold the most power with our society. Then comes the Middle class those who survive off earned incomes without help, often educators, conventional and seen as the everyday Norm. Finally, the lower/working class this group hold the least status in terms of the ladder with lower income, intelligence, fewer assets, access to resources and stigma which does not encourage motivation for transitioning (Fox Et al., 2009).The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

“Classism refers to stereotypes and prejudice about class position that contributes to discrimination and domination” (Day et al., 2014). The class system is a socially constructed concept built by those who would be at the top, this power based concept grew Classism, which is the attitude and belief system that encourages difference between the classes ensuring that those in the upper class maintain their dominance with however the expense of the lower/middle class by diminishing access and encouraging negative typecasting (Fox Et al., 2009). We are socialized to want power and to look at those with no power or the ability to gain it as undesirable, this occurs through being nurtured by family or friends and how the classes are portrayed through media such as film, T.V, social networks and books, which are often ran or publicised by the elites of society showing only the desired parts of popular culture and ignoring the less desirable, unless it has an admirable story line of ‘rags to ritches’ (Hall, 1982).The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

However, in reality meritocracy, meaning that through hard work anyone can transfer into the upper class, is filled with greater obstacles than what media and films may portray, it is particularly difficulty for those in the lower class.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers. A poll taken by YouGov for the Economist looked at how well the population in Britain are aware of their social class, results showed that 48% of people over 30 hope to reach further up the ‘ladder’ than their parent, however only 28% feel that they would be able to achieve upward mobility, these statistics show the attitudes toward social mobility as being unlikely, in addition to these pieces of data, the poll also showed the 2 thirds of the 1,995 sample believed that they or any children or future children will be able to move upward of the social class they’re born into (Class, 2006). Classism and social opinion, contribute to the marginalization of the lower class, stopping them from living fulfilled social lives, with no control over expectations of their abilities or resources available to them, decreasing their self-esteem and confidence due to public attitudes which are encouraged by media, showing how this class is oppressed and rejected by society (Prilleltensky, 2008).The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

In addition to being excluded through social representation and public attitudes, Mainstream psychology also contribute as an influencer to the marginalization of the lower class, as the social science contains attributes and ideas that are in line with the ideologies of the social class system. The role of psychologists is seen as respected and influential in society bringing foreword development, understanding and knowledge. Psychology and practitioners are themselves upper class in the social system, due to the education required as mentioned previously a graduate degree, high intellect and income are socioeconomic indicators of Upper class membership (Rothman, 2017). when receiving treatment from practitioner we trust their support, council and diagnosis, by respecting the qualification or title of Dr understanding that they must know better than us because they have certificates on show to prove it, this shows how psychologist are a part of the hierarchy, by using their knowledge as influence to persuade or guide care users, this indicates that a power dynamic is used between the client and practitioners (Saper, 1970).The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Psychology is able to identity abnormal behaviours and personalities as it concentrates on people, cultures and societies, as we’ve observed psychology itself is powered by elitist, therefore it often follows similar views of what characteristics define those who are different or ‘abnormal’ with those in the upper class that reject the working class. Within western culture psychology see ‘normal’ as individuals who are have appropriate behaviours, happiness, health, productive work and being able to rely on one’s self however for those of lower socio economic status their accessibility to higher skilled job, efficient healthcare and in some cases the need for financial assistance, does not fit the psychological model of ‘Normal’ (Maisel, 2012).The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Ignoring those who are living below the perceived line of normal, is also seen within research as Psychology see the ideal subject that will be used to generalised in clinical research as a white, male, middle class person, this is an example of how mainstream psychology may exclude other minorities such as race, gender and the lower class (Levesque, 2012). Samples often used within psychological research are often gained from college/university students, this pool of participants will often be representatives of the middle or upper class, as students will often have a higher IQ through gaining education and a degree, putting them into middle class section of the ‘ladder’, this leads to the middle class being over represented in research as the ‘norm’ however then ignoring those in the population who are unable to acquire higher education, meaning the research is not representable or generalised and biased, however these factors are overlooked, further supporting the ideals that lower class member of society are excluded from the norm and considered ‘others’ within the field of research (Fox Et al., 2009).The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Psychological research in to social class is often over looked and ignore, though it affects every aspect of the human experience, social class does not show to be a core focus within research (Day et al., 2014). However, when there has been a direct focus on this social construction, the research favours the angle that individuals have the notion of ‘choice’, that poverty can be resolved and anyone can attain social mobility with the myth of meritocracy through changing the individual, not the structure that developed and constructed the rules of normality or negative stigmas for those who deviate from the desired model. A study conducted by Catherine Cozzarelli on attitudes and attributions of the poor, sample taken from Midwestern college, the overall opinion was negative to the poor for example their poverty being the result of their personal failure due to lack of abilities and effort. However, a pattern showing that of a contrasting opinion between those of different ethnic backgrounds, the sample that were middle class, white and male, agreed with mainstream psychology that individuals have control over whether they remain in the lower class, whereas those considered minorities immigrants & females disagreed and highlighted that social structures must also play a part (Cozzarelli et al., 2001). This study supports how mainstream psychology is biased toward the social structure not being the issue, as they are practitioners at the top of the ‘pecking order’, in by doing this psychology ignores and forgets the real life implications of encouraging descriptions such as talentless/effortless therefore encouraging class difference and the negative stigma that the lower class offer nothing to society.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Additionally, mainstream psychology also encourages the stigma, that those of low socio economic status have considerably low IQ in comparison with others. By focusing on the differences between classes in their abilities, cognition and motivation for social mobility comparing these alone encourages class differences in highlight weaknesses of the classes leading to possible discrimination, ensuring there are always dominating and lesser than classes (Day et al., 2014).The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

American Psychologist Linda Gottfredson, researched the possibilities that lower levels of intelligence is able to explain why and where people are placed on the ‘ladder’, by reviewing literature which offered various views, that IQ is able to predict whether or not individuals will live a successful fulfilled life or not, along wither another view that IQ and status is inherited and maintain from parents nurturing their young to follow their path. Results showed a positive correlation between a father social class which is defined through their occupation and their child’s attained social class matching with their parents, Goffredson also reviews result that display test taken at the age of eleven can also predict the possibility of class transitioning (Gottfredson, 2004). Furthermore, she concluded with this data that all young people are exposed to the same quality/ level of education and expectations no matter the social class, therefore indicating it is down to the child or individual if they are unable to attain success (Gottfredson, 2004).The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

In addition, this incites the removal of ‘blame’ on the social structures and places it again on the individual, this point is further argued and agreed with by Bernice Lott another American psychologist, she argues that those of low socio economic status aren’t able to access the same quality of education that the wealthy or middle class are granted access to, therefore their IQ would be lower due to lower quality education (Lott,2012). As it would also be if a working class child were able to get middle class schooling, a stigma encouraged by mainstream psychology and society, would follow the child and result in lower expectation due to background, therefore as seen in research previous mentions, younger working class children are then ‘othered’ by the education system, however if the young person showed higher intelligence than what expected, they are celebrated in be able to ‘escape’ the ‘horrid’ working class, rejected by society (Lott,2012)

Along with disempowering the lower class through education and public attitude, Mainstream psychology also regards them as ‘problematic’ when faced with health issues. By being seen as disadvantaged by society, they are stereotyped to have lower health including both mentally and physical, that due to the supposed ‘risky behaviour’ of the lower class with common habits such as smoking, lack of nutrition, drinking and not active enough increases the likelihood of poor health (Miller & Grigg, 1966). However, though the negative stigma that exist around people of lower class that they all make bad life, career and health choices, along with being seen as lazy and vulnerable to addiction, this grouping is incorrect as not all individual apart of the lower class fit this stereotype (Wardle, 2013). Often poor health issues are due to being unable to access efficient and affective healthcare, in terms of the U.S aside from overrun free clinic, healthcare is costly as is the insurance which requires a job with stable income, as for the U.K even with the NHS healthcare accessibilities is decreasing due to financial cuts by the government, which causes waiting times and overworked staff to increase, resulting in care below the standard (Ham, 2005)The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

After looking at various factors and research conducted within mainstream psychology, clear themes of disempowerment and oppression come to the surface, showing that psychology and practitioner use similar negative language as public attitudes and the media, such as Lazy, Rejected, talentless, lesser than and ignored. This terminology used by people and heard by the lower/working social class incites them to accept these lower expectation, resulting limited unfulfilled social life, facing society and it obstacles alone without the support of even psychological practitioner who only see a way to ‘fix’ the individual, not the problem that is the social class system. However, we now move on to how another strand of social science is able to benefit and redress the issues the working class are faced with.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

In today’s world, the modern person is educated, independent and aggressive. To be a success, you must put forth your most competitive side and win it all. Nothing less will be permitted. This is the mindset of most business tycoons, stockbrokers and the like. However, on the other side of the globe, third world countries follow a more traditional lifestyle where the outlook on life is a little less malicious. In these countries, the society’s idea of success is being part of a large family with prosperous crops and livestock. How is it that our society and theirs have both been successful? And why has the traditional way of life stayed so prevalent in such an industrialized world?

First, what exactly …show more content…
Females do give birth to the children, but in these societies, a female is more like a piece of property than of heritage. Marriage in these societies is usually based on the best dowry, rather than being based on love like most modern marriages.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Traditional societies believe that family heritage is what holds a family together. These societies have ascriptive values, meaning to follow their family’s ancestry and way of life. In modern culture, an individual has the power to decide for him/herself as to what he/she wants to attain in life – including an education, career and mate. To those of us living in a modern world, traditional societies may seem to have it rough. However, to those living the traditional way, their life is set for them. They need not worry about how powerful they will be or how much money they will make. Their life brings them security.

Medical knowledge is less than adequate in these societies, leading to much illness and a very high death rate. The infant mortality rate is overwhelmingly high, which is a reason for the high birth rates.

In some ways, traditional culture and modern culture are alike. Any culture is a system of learned and shared meanings. People learn and share things over the course of generations, and so we say they are a culture. Traditional and modern culture function similarly because both are ways of thinking, ways of relating to people and to the universe.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

The beginning of culture was language. The first word was culture. Someone looked up from whatever else was going on and said something, and that first word was the building block of all human culture. You could pass it around. You could imitate it or change it. Its meaning could be shared among people.

Maybe the word was “food” or “love” or “God.” It doesn’t matter what the word was, what language it began, or when or how. It just was. And the word constituted culture, because the word carried meaning.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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If there were only one concept to be considered in the discussion of culture, it is this: meaning. How do we know whether the group of letters a-p-p-l-e represents that sweet-tart yellow or red fruit, or a brand name of computer? How do we know whether the group of letters l-e-a-d represents that blue-gray metallic chemical element, or the verb that signifies “to show the way?” How do we know what a person’s intentions are when they wave their hand at us from across the street? It is because we have learned to share the meanings of words.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Of course meanings are not limited to written words but began with thought words and spoken words, signed words, gestured words, pictured words. All these kinds of words carry meaning. And it is in the meanings of things that culture resides, regardless of whether it is traditional or modern culture. So we can commence with the idea that our traditional ancestors, like their modern descendants, learned and shared meanings.

Traditional and modern culture are alike in another way. Both developed to accommodate their surroundings. Both traditional and modern culture work for people because they are suited to local environmental conditions. A farming culture would not work as well in Antarctica. Inuit (Eskimo) culture would not survive as well in the Sahara. Bedouin culture would not function as well in Manhattan. Culture of any kind works best (and longest) if it is well adapted to local conditions.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

It should perhaps be noted that there is apparently nothing genetic about the presence or absence of traditional culture; traditional culture is not the sole province of any one ethnic group. For example, in ancient Europe the Celts and Teutons lived traditional culture. In ancient North America the Anishinabe and Lakota lived traditional culture. In ancient Africa the Bantu and Yoruba lived traditional culture. At some point back in history all human beings — regardless of what continent they occupied and which ethnic group they constituted — all lived in a traditional tribal culture.

Modern culture developed in some areas of the planet as human societies grew larger. Mass organization in some form — first the development of large work forces and armies, and later the development of mechanized means of production — was an important force in changing traditional culture into modern culture. The shift from rural life to urban life is at the core of the development of modern culture.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

While traditional and modern culture may be similar in some ways, in some very significant ways they are clearly different from each other. Traditional culture, such as our human ancestors enjoyed, is held together by relationships among people — immediate family, extended family, clan and tribe. Everyone lives nearby. Everyone knows how he or she fits into the mix because relationships, and the behaviors that go along with them, are clearly defined. “Brother” is someone toward whom I must act like a brother. “Uncle” is someone from whom I expect a certain kind of behavior. If I violate what is expected, everyone will know. Perhaps there will be severe consequences.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

But this does not rob the humans who live traditional culture of their individuality. Some brothers act differently from other brothers. Some uncles take on different roles depending, for example, on whether they are mother’s brother or father’s brother, or whether they are particularly gregarious or more somber, and so on. But in general, well-defined family and clan relationships, and the kinship terms that signal them, make daily operations in traditional society take a workable course. If you have the proper relationship with someone, you can get just about anything accomplished. If, on the other hand, you don’t have the proper relationship, you find it difficult, if not impossible, to accomplish anything. You learn that kinship terms are key phrases in getting along. In traditional culture, relationships and people seem to be what matters.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

In the modern culture of mainstream America, most people live in nuclear families: Mom and Dad and 2.5 kids. Many have only occasional contact with family members outside the immediate household. Young people quickly learn that their importance depends on how many and what kind of things they can control. Eventually they learn that power — personal, economic, social, political, religious, whatever — gets things done. Modern culture has a tendency to spread out, to build empires, to capitalize on as many resources as possible. Modern culture seems to be held together by power and things, not by people and relationships.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

In modern culture people learn that business life is separate from personal life, for example that church and state can be kept apart. We learn to compartmentalize our lives. During the week we can be shrewd business-makers in a competitive marketplace where there are happy winners and tragic losers. On the weekend we can go to church or temple and ask forgiveness for our transgressions, and then go back on Monday and start all over again. We learn (in some form) two key phrases: “It’s nothing personal, but…” and “It’s just business.”The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

But in traditional culture things are not that simple — business life and personal life are often the same thing. Partners in trade and other economic activities are generally the same people as one’s kin relations. Similarly, the principles and values that guide spiritual and ceremonial life are the same principles and values that guide political life. Thus in traditional culture, the compartmentalizing or separating of business and personal life, of religious and political life, would not work. You cannot separate how you treat your trade partners from how you treat your cousins if they are the same people. You cannot separate your spiritual values from your political values if they are the same values.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Another way in which the two differ is that traditional culture tends to stay relatively the same for long periods of time. It is basically a conservative system. Does this mean that new ideas are not incorporated from time to time, that traditional culture is static? Certainly not. The traditional culture of our ancestors changed in response to the same kinds of forces that produce biological change.

The invention of new things in traditional culture (for example, new technologies such as ceramics or the bow and arrow) work in the same way as genetic mutations: something unusual happens, and things after that are different.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers. Preferences for especially useful things and ideas in traditional culture work in the same way as natural selection: something does a better job or is more desirable in some way, so it becomes more common thereafter. Ways of thinking and doing things in traditional cultures flow from one culture to another just like genes flow from one biological population to another: folks come into contact, something gets exchanged. Isolation of a small, unusual sample of people in a traditional culture causes whatever that thing is that makes them unusual to become more common in future generations (for example, if a small group of people sets off to start a new village, and they all just happen to like to wear their hair a certain way, then their offspring would tend to wear their hair that way too) — in just the same way that genetic drift operates. Ancient traditional culture did change. But it was such a conservative system that it tended to resist change whenever it could.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

In contrast, modern culture thrives on change. It creates new goods and services, and teaches us to want them. It adds new technologies, things and ideas at an increasingly rapid rate, such that the amount of cultural change experienced in America between 1950 and 2000 is far greater than the amount of change experienced in the entire eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in America. Change in modern culture is propelled by all the same forces that cause change in traditional culture, only in modern culture the changes happen more quickly. Modern culture is a more mutable system that tends to change often.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Another way in which traditional culture and modern culture differ is in their relationship to environment. Traditional cultures lived in close contact with their local environment. This taught that nature must be respected, cooperated with, in certain ritualized ways. One did not make huge changes in the environment, beyond clearing fields for agriculture and villages. Society saw itself as part of nature; its spiritual beliefs and values held humans as the kinsmen of plants and animals.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

In contrast, modern culture creates its own environment, exports that cultural environment to colonies in far away places. It builds cities and massive structures. It teaches that nature is meant to be manipulated, to be the source of jobs and wealth for its human masters. It sees itself as being above nature. Its religions commonly cast humans as the pinnacle of nature: at best its paternalistic supervisors, at worst its righteous conquerors.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

These differences in the way traditional and modern culture perceive and interact with the environment have various consequences for the humans in those cultures. Not the least of these is the difference in sustainability. A culture that lives in relative harmony with its environment has a greater likelihood of sustaining itself than does a culture that destroys its environment. The culture of our human ancestors existed for thousands of years without doing any substantive damage to the ecosystem. In a very few centuries modern culture has eliminated or endangered numerous plant and animal species, degraded many waterways and negatively impacted the health of many of its citizens: “better” living through chemistry!The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

A closely related comparison between traditional and modern culture concerns ways of thinking. Modern culture is built upon knowledge. The more bits of knowledge one controls — a larger database, a larger computer memory — the more power one has. Modern culture produces new bits of knowledge so rapidly that sometimes our computers tell us “Memory is Full!” People in modern culture are more likely to feel that things are changing, that bits of knowledge are coming at them, so rapidly that they cannot absorb it all, cannot make sense of it all. Modern culture is long in knowledge.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

The traditional culture had a broad base of knowledge, as well. All plants and animals in the local environment were known by name and by their potential usefulness to humans. Weather, geology, astronomy, medicine, politics, history, language and so on were all parts of a complex integrated body of knowledge. But in traditional culture life went on beyond knowledge, to the level of wisdom — seeing the patterns in the bits of knowledge — and to the level of understanding — realizing that there are more profound patterns made by the patterns of wisdom.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Take medicine as an example. Traditional man had a pain in his stomach; he found a plant in his local environment that had a certain medicinal property. These were bits of knowledge. If he prepared the plant’s leaves a certain way, and drank the tea that resulted, it would make the pain in his stomach go away. This is a scientific method, a process that involves seeing the pattern in the bits of knowledge: x (the plant) goes with y (the preparation) to produce z (the treatment). This realizing of patterns is what I call wisdom. Both modern and traditional culture go this far, but here they often tend to diverge.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Eventually this traditional ancestor realized that there were all kinds of plant treatments for all kinds of ills — that for every ailment there was a treatment — and that there was a balancing act that operated on a universal scale of which he was but a small part. There was a harmony that could become disturbed if he destroyed the forest in which the plants grew, or if he overestimated himself by taking for granted the wisdom he had gained about the plants — and this harmony had to be maintained on all levels (physical, social, environmental, spiritual, etc.). This realization that the patterns of wisdom were themselves connected in higher order patterns was the beginning of what I call understanding. The traditional culture of our ancestors was long in understanding, whereas modern culture frequently seems to stop the thought process at the level of wisdom.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

In modern culture, the elders tend to think of traditional culture as “primitive,” “backward,” somehow “childlike.” In traditional culture, on the other hand, the elders tend to think of modern culture as “hollow,” “ignorant,” somehow “childlike.” But modern culture tends to take over traditional culture because modern culture is powerful: it is mechanized, it moves mountains, it digs canals and drains swamps, it overwhelms, and it is seductive — it glitters, it tastes sweet, it goes fast. And it advertises.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

So why do so many people these days seem to be refugees from modern culture? Why are so many people who were raised in the ways of modern culture now so interested in traditional American Indian or Celtic culture? Why is there a constant stream of people searching for a “new age,” for “medicine men” and powwows and traditional ceremonies and Highland games?The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

I think it is because there is a hole in modern culture, where the truly important spiritual and humane parts of life used to be. Put another way, I think that inside modern man there is a traditional man somewhere — who wants the security of feeling connected to an extended family and a clan of other humans — who longs for the pleasure of hearing stories told around the hearth — who resonates to the steady drum rhythm or the haunting bagpipe wail — who plods through his anxious dreams grasping at bits of knowledge, thirsting, perhaps unknowingly, for the cool, delicious harmony of understanding. I believe the shift from traditional to modern culture was one of man’s greatest falls from grace.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Traditional and Modern Societies: A Comparative Look

What are we talking about?

“Traditional” refers to those societies or elements of societies that are small-scale, are derived from indigenous and often ancient cultural practices.
“Modern” refers to those practices that relate to the industrial mode of production or the development of large-scale often colonial societies.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
These co-exist in the world today.

It is stupid to divide things up into dichotomies or dualities, but it is sometimes useful as a heuristic device.
Even though there is no such thing as a completely traditional or completely modern society at the present time, the collision between the two forms of organization has great significance for everyone alive today.

The principle of social analysis.

Even the idea of separating society or daily life into ‘components’ (economy, religion, political organization, social relations, etc.) does not make sense in the traditional worldview, in which they are all inter-penetrated, a Gestalt.
The domination of Western ways and thought of all others, by military and economic force, may be a historical fact, but is not necessarily a permanent state of affairs.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Subsistence and economy.

Traditional: Production for use or subsistence.
Simple division of labor (age, sex); cooperation.
Units of production family, clan, village, age-set (organic social units).Units of distribution and consumption socially-based (family, etc.).
Consumption to satisfy basic needs or ritual.
Little transformation of produce (crafts, metallurgy, cooking…)
Tasks organically interdependent.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Modern: Production for profit, growth.
Complex division of labor (specialization, differentiation).
Individualized, mechanized; units hard to identify (not social).Units of dist. are individual, mechanical, commercial, corporate.
Consumption needs and competitive (over-) consumerism.
High degree of trans., commoditization.
Dependence on others’ skills, knowledge.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Material culture.

Traditional: Accumulation for redistribution, exchange for prestige, alliance.
Collective ownership.
No distinct economic sphere; inter-penetrated with kinship, age, ritual.
No work for pay; no formal contract; no “labor” or “shadow”.

Few possessions; similar standard of living.

Modern: Resources not always used for social ends (self). Cult of wealth.
Private ownership.
Distinct economic sphere, with distinct domains.
Pay for goods and services; contract-based; shadow work.
Many possessions; inequitable distribution of resources and wealth.

Cultural ecology.

Traditional: Subsistence strategy related to ecology, population size and structure, settlement pattern.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Sacred land and commons.
Use value of environment.

Transport by human or animal energy.
Individuals have variety of skills; make tools and control them.
Human, plant, animal and solar energy.
Migration and diverse settlement.
Limited but nutritious diet.

Modern: Techno-economic system unrelated to environmental, social and cultural factors.
Restricted access (private), but few sacred places or commons.
Resource exploitation, domination of nature.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Machine transportation; chemical energy.
Expertise replaces skill and general knowledge.
Chemical, mechanical energy intensive; muscular is leisure.
Urbanized. Rural supports growth.
Varied, but questionable diet (commercialized).

Political and social features.

Traditional: Inherently democratic, decentralized power kin-based.
Public goals (good of group over individual).
No bureaucracy.
Foreign policy is trade, raiding, negotiation, or retaliation.Age, kin, and gender (some) dominance.
Groups in society inter-mixed.
Community cohesion; hospitality ‘law’.
Face-to-face relations, everything negotiable; consensus important.
Family important.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Modern: State tends away from democracy; centralized. Oligarchy.
Some public and personal goals.
Bureaucratic.
Conquest, commerce, assimilation, colonialism.Class, caste, stratified hierarchy of elites, also.
Social separation (apartheid).
Little sense of community.
Impersonal, distance communication, everything pre-defined.
Family pulled apart.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Lifestyle.

Traditional: More leisure, more time; time means lived life.
Spiritual focus.
Mythological basis for taboos and rules. Informal social control.
People entertain themselves. Conversation is an art.

Modern: Less leisure, no time; time is independent of life; time is money.
Secular or religious.
Legalistic or doctrinal. Formal social control.
People are entertained by specialists. Consumption replaces conversation.

Less leisure, no time; time is independent of life; time is money.
Secular or religious.
Legalistic or doctrinal. Formal social control.
People are entertained by specialists. Consumption replaces conversation.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Human beings are biological creatures. We are composed of blood and bones and flesh. At the most basic level, our genes express themselves in physical characteristics, affecting bodily aspects such as skin tone and eye color. Yet, human beings are much more than our biology, and this is evident particularly in the way humans generate, and live within, complex cultures.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Defining Culture
Culture is a term used by social scientists, like anthropologists and sociologists, to encompass all the facets of human experience that extend beyond our physical fact. Culture refers to the way we understand ourselves both as individuals and as members of society, and includes stories, religion, media, rituals, and even language itself.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

It is critical to understand that the term culture does not describe a singular, fixed entity. Instead, it is a useful heuristic, or way of thinking, that can be very productive in understanding behavior. As a student of the social sciences, you should think of the word culture as a conceptual tool rather than as a uniform, static definition. Culture necessarily changes, and is changed by, a variety of interactions, with individuals, media, and technology, just to name a few.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

The History of Culture as a Concept
Culture is primarily an anthropological term. The field of anthropology emerged around the same time as Social Darwinism, in the late 19th and early 20th century. Social Darwinism was the belief that the closer a cultural group was to the normative, Western, European standards of behavior and appearance, the more evolved that group was. As a theory of the world, it was essentially a racist concept that persists in certain forms up to this day. If you have ever heard someone reference people of African descent as being from, or close to, the jungle, or the wilderness, you’ve encountered a type of coded language that is a modern incarnation of Social Darwinist thought.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

During the late 19th and early 20th century time period, the positivist school also emerged in sociological thought. One of the key figures in this school, Cesare Lombroso, studied the physical characteristics of prisoners, because he believed that he could find a biological basis for crime. Lombroso coined the term atavism to suggest that some individuals were throwbacks to a more bestial point in evolutionary history. Lombroso used this concept to claim that certain individuals were more weak-willed, and more prone to criminal activity, than their supposedly more evolved counterparts.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

In accordance with the hegemonic beliefs of the time, anthropologists first theorized culture as something that evolves in the same way biological organisms evolve. Just like biological evolution, cultural evolution was thought to be an adaptive system that produced unique results depending on location and historical moment. However, unlike biological evolution, culture can be intentionally taught and thus spread from one group of people to another.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Initially, anthropologists believed that culture was a product of biological evolution, and that cultural evolution depended exclusively on physical conditions. Today’s anthropologists no longer believe it is this simple. Neither culture nor biology is solely responsible for the other. They interact in very complex ways, which biological anthropologists will be studying for years to come.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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Guildford Cathedral relief (UK): People began domesticating cattle many years before they developed the genes for lactose tolerance.

Culture and Society
Culture is what differentiates one group or society from the next; different societies have different cultures.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES
Differentiate between the various meanings of culture within society

KEY TAKEAWAYS
Key Points
Different societies have different cultures; a culture represents the beliefs and practices of a group, while society represents the people who share those beliefs and practices.
Material culture refers to the objects or belongings of a group of people, such as automobiles, stores, and the physical structures where people worship. Nonmaterial culture, in contrast, consists of the ideas, attitudes, and beliefs of a society.
In 18th and 19th century Europe, the term “culture” was equated with civilization and considered a unique aspect of Western society. Remnants of that colonial definition of culture can be seen today in the idea of ” high culture “.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
During the Romantic Era, culture became equated with nationalism and gave rise to the idea of multiple national cultures.
Today, social scientists understand culture as a society’s norms, values, and beliefs; as well as its objects and symbols, and the meaning given to those objects and symbols.
Key Terms
civilization: An organized culture encompassing many communities, often on the scale of a nation or a people; a stage or system of social, political or technical development.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
high culture: The artistic entertainment and material artifacts associated with a society’s aristocracy or most learned members, usually requiring significant education to be appreciated or highly skilled labor to be produced.
popular culture: The prevailing vernacular culture in any given society, including art, cooking, clothing, entertainment, films, mass media, music, sports, and style
nationalism: The idea of supporting one’s country and culture; patriotism.
Culture encompasses human elements beyond biology: for example, our norms and values, the stories we tell, learned or acquired behaviors, religious beliefs, art and fashion, and so on. Culture is what differentiates one group or society from the next.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Different societies have different cultures; however it is important not to confuse the idea of culture with society. A culture represents the beliefs and practices of a group, while society represents the people who share those beliefs and practices. Neither society nor culture could exist without the other.

Defining Culture
Almost every human behavior, from shopping to marriage to expressions of feelings, is learned. Behavior based on learned customs is not necessarily a bad thing – being familiar with unwritten rules helps people feel secure and confident that their behaviors will not be challenged or disrupted. However even the simplest actions – such as commuting to work, ordering food from a restaurant, and greeting someone on the street – evidence a great deal of cultural propriety.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Material culture refers to the objects or belongings of a group of people (such as automobiles, stores, and the physical structures where people worship). Nonmaterial culture, in contrast, consists of the ideas, attitudes, and beliefs of a society. Material and nonmaterial aspects of culture are linked, and physical objects often symbolize cultural ideas. A metro pass is a material object, but it represents a form of nonmaterial culture (namely capitalism, and the acceptance of paying for transportation). Clothing, hairstyles, and jewelry are part of material culture, but the appropriateness of wearing certain clothing for specific events reflects nonmaterial culture. A school building belongs to material culture, but the teaching methods and educational standards are part of education’s nonmaterial culture.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

These material and nonmaterial aspects of culture can vary subtly from region to region. As people travel farther afield, moving from different regions to entirely different parts of the world, certain material and nonmaterial aspects of culture become dramatically unfamiliar. As we interact with cultures other than our own, we become more aware of our own culture – which might otherwise be invisible to us – and to the differences and commonalities between our culture and others.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

The History of “Culture”
Some people think of culture in the singular, in the way that it was thought of in Europe during the 18th and early 19th centuries: as something achieved through evolution and progress. This concept of culture reflected inequalities within European societies and their colonies around the world; in short, it equates culture with civilization and contrasts both with nature or non-civilization. According to this understanding of culture, some countries are more “civilized” than others, and some people are therefore more “cultured” than others.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

When people talk about culture in the sense of civilization or refinement, they are really talking about “high culture,” which is different from the sociological concept of culture. High culture refers to elite goods and activities, such as haute cuisine, high fashion or couture, museum-caliber art, and classical music. In common parlance, people may refer to others as being “cultured” if they know about and take part in these activities. Someone who uses culture in this sense might argue that classical music is more refined than music by working-class people, such as jazz or the indigenous music traditions of aboriginal peoples. Popular (or “pop”) culture, by contrast, is more mainstream and influenced by mass media and the common opinion. Popular culture tends to change as tastes and opinions change over time, whereas high culture generally stays the same throughout the years. For example, Mozart is considered high culture, whereas Britney Spears is considered pop culture; Mozart is likely to still be popular in 100 years, but Britney Spears will likely be forgotten by all but a few.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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Aboriginal culture: Early colonial definitions of culture equated culture and civilization and characterized aboriginal people as uncivilized and uncultured.

This definition of culture only recognizes a single standard of refinement to which all groups are held accountable. Thus, people who differ from those who believe themselves to be “cultured” in this sense are not usually understood as having a different culture; they are understood as being uncultured.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Although we still see remnants of this idea of high culture today, it has largely fallen out of practice. Its decline began during the Romantic Era, when scholars in Germany – especially those concerned with nationalism – developed the more inclusive notion of culture as a distinct worldview. Although more inclusive, this approach to culture still allowed for distinctions between so-called “civilized” and “primitive” cultures. By the late 19th century, anthropologists changed the concept of culture to include a wider variety of societies, ultimately resulting in the concept of culture adopted by social scientists today: objects and symbols, the meaning given to those objects and symbols, and the norms, values, and beliefs that pervade social life.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

This new perspective has also removed the evaluative element of the concept of culture; it distinguishes among different cultures, but does not rank them. For instance, the high culture of elites is now contrasted with popular or pop culture. In this sense, high culture no longer refers to the idea of being “cultured,” as all people have culture. High culture simply refers to the objects, symbols, norms, values, and beliefs of a particular group of people; popular culture does the same.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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High culture: Ballet is traditionally considered a form of “high culture”.

Cultural Universals
A cultural universal is an element, pattern, trait, or institution that is common to all human cultures worldwide.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES
Discuss cultural universals in terms of the various elements of culture, such as norms and beliefs

KEY TAKEAWAYS
Key Points
Cultural universals are elements, patterns, traits, or institutions that are common to all human cultures worldwide.
There is a tension in cultural anthropology and cultural sociology between the claim that culture is a universal and that it is also particular. The idea of cultural universals runs contrary in some ways to cultural relativism which was, in part, a response to Western ethnocentrism.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Ethnocentrism may take obvious forms. For example, the belief that one people’s culture is the most beautiful and true. Franz Boas understood “culture” to include not only certain tastes in food, art, and music, or beliefs about religion but instead assumed a much broader notion of culture.
Among the cultural universals listed by Donald Brown (1991) are abstract speech, figurative speech and metaphors, antonyms and synonyms, and units of time.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Among the cultural universals listed by Brown, some were investigated by Franz Boas. For example, Boas saw language as a means of categorizing experiences. Thus, although people may perceive visible radiation similarly, people who speak different languages slice up the continuum in different ways.
Since Franz Boas, two debates have dominated cultural anthropology.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Key Terms
culture: The beliefs, values, behavior, and material objects that constitute a people’s way of life.
particular: A specific case; an individual thing as opposed to a whole class.
universal: Common to all society; worldwide.
The sociology of culture concerns culture—usually understood as the ensemble of symbolic codes used by a society—as it is manifested in society. The elements of culture include (1) symbols (anything that carries particular meaning recognized by people who share the same culture); (2) language (system of symbols that allows people to communicate with one another); (3) values (culturally-defined standards that serve as broad guidelines for social living; (4) beliefs (specific statements that people hold to be true); and (5) norms (rules and expectations by which a society guides the behavior of its members). While these elements of culture may be seen in various contexts over time and across geography, a cultural universal is an element, pattern, trait, or institution that is common to all human cultures worldwide.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers. Taken together, the whole body of cultural universals is known as the human condition. Among the cultural universals listed by Donald Brown (1991) are abstract speech, figurative speech and metaphors, antonyms and synonyms, and units of time.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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First-Cousin Marriage Laws in the U.S.: In states marked dark blue, first-cousin marriage is legal. Light blue signifies that it is legal but has restrictions or exceptions. Pink signifies that it is banned with exceptions; red signifies that it is banned via statute, and dark red signifies that it is a criminal offense.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

The concept of a cultural universal has long been discussed in the social sciences. Cultural universals are elements, patterns, traits, or institutions that are common to all human cultures worldwide. There is a tension in cultural anthropology and cultural sociology between the claim that culture is a universal (the fact that all human societies have culture), and that it is also particular (culture takes a tremendous variety of forms around the world). The idea of cultural universals—that specific aspects of culture are common to all human cultures—runs contrary to cultural relativism. Cultural relativism was, in part, a response to Western ethnocentrism. Ethnocentrism may take obvious forms, in which one consciously believes that one people’s arts are the most beautiful, values the most virtuous, and beliefs the most truthful. Franz Boas argued that one’s culture may mediate and thus limit one’s perceptions in less obvious ways. He understood “culture” to include not only certain tastes in food, art, and music, or beliefs about religion but instead assumed a much broader notion of culture.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Among the cultural universals listed by Donald Brown, some of these were investigated by Franz Boas. For example, Boas called attention to the idea that language is a means of categorizing experiences, hypothesizing that the existence of different languages suggests that people categorize, and thus experience, language differently. Therefore, although people may perceive visible radiation the same way, in terms of a continuum of color, people who speak different languages slice up this continuum into discrete colors in different ways.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Culture Shock
Culture shock is the personal disorientation a person may feel when experiencing an unfamiliar way of life in a new country.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES
Discuss culture shock in terms of its four phases – honeymoon, negotiation, adjustment and mastery

KEY TAKEAWAYS
Key Points
Culture shock is the personal disorientation a person may feel when experiencing an unfamiliar way of life due to immigration or a visit to a new country.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Culture shock can be described as consisting of at least one of four distinct phases: honeymoon, negotiation, adjustment, and mastery.
During the honeymoon phase, the differences between the old and new culture are seen in a romantic light.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
After some time (usually around three months, depending on the individual), differences between the old and new culture become apparent and may create anxiety. This is the mark of the negotiation phase.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
In the adjustment phase, one grows accustomed to the new culture and develops routines.
Lastly, in the mastery stage, assignees are able to participate fully and comfortably in the host culture.
In the Adjustment phase, one grows accustomed to the new culture and develops routines.
One knows what to expect in most situations and the host country no longer feels all that new.
Lastly, in the Mastery stage, assignees are able to participate fully and comfortably in the host culture.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Key Terms
biculturalism: The state or quality of being bicultural.
Culture shock is the personal disorientation a person may feel when experiencing an unfamiliar way of life due to immigration or a visit to a new country, or to a move between social environments. One of the most common causes of culture shock involves individuals in a foreign country. There is no true way to entirely prevent culture shock, as individuals in any society are personally affected by cultural contrasts differently.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Culture shock can be described as consisting of at least one of four distinct phases: honeymoon, negotiation, adjustment, and mastery. During the honeymoon phase, the differences between the old and new culture are seen in a romantic light. During the first few weeks, most people are fascinated by the new culture. They associate with nationals who speak their language, and who are polite to the foreigners. This period is full of observations and new discoveries. Like most honeymoon periods, this stage eventually ends.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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Culture Shock: Enthusiastic welcome offered to the first Indian student to arrive in Dresden, East Germany (1951).

After some time (usually around three months, depending on the individual), differences between the old and new culture become apparent and may create anxiety. This is the mark of the negotiation phase. Excitement may eventually give way to unpleasant feelings of frustration and anger as one continues to experience unfavorable events that may be perceived as strange and offensive to one’s cultural attitude. Still, the most important change in the period is communication. People adjusting to a new culture often feel lonely and homesick because they are not yet used to the new environment and meet people with whom they are not familiar every day.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Again, after some time, one grows accustomed to the new culture and develops routines, marking the adjustment phase. One knows what to expect in most situations and the host country no longer feels all that new. One becomes concerned with basic living again and things become more normal. One starts to develop problem-solving skills for dealing with the culture and begins to accept the culture’s ways with a positive attitude. The culture begins to make sense and negative reactions and responses to the culture are reduced.

In the mastery stage, assignees are able to participate fully and comfortably in the host culture. Mastery does not mean total conversion. People often keep many traits from their earlier culture, such as accents and languages. It is often referred to as the biculturalism stage.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Ethnocentrism and Cultural Relativism
Ethnocentrism, in contrast to cultural relativism, is the tendency to look at the world primarily from the perspective of one’s own culture.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES
Examine the concepts of ethnocentrism and cultural relativism in relation to your own and other cultures in society

KEY TAKEAWAYS
Key Points
Ethnocentrism often entails the belief that one’s own race or ethnic group is the most important or that some or all aspects of its culture are superior to those of other groups.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Within this ideology, individuals will judge other groups in relation to their own particular ethnic group or culture, especially with concern to language, behavior, customs, and religion.
Cultural relativism is the belief that the concepts and values of a culture cannot be fully translated into, or fully understood in, other languages; that a specific cultural artifact (e.g., a ritual) has to be understood in terms of the larger symbolic system of which it is a part.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Cultural relativism is the principle that an individual person’s beliefs and activities should be understood by others in terms of that individual’s own culture.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Key Terms
ethnocentrism: The tendency to look at the world primarily from the perspective of one’s own culture.
cultural relativism: Cultural relativism is a principle that was established as axiomatic in anthropological research by Franz Boas in the first few decades of the twentieth century, and later popularized by his students. Boas first articulated the idea in 1887: “…civilization is not something absolute, but… is relative, and… our ideas and conceptions are true only so far as our civilization goes. “
Ethnocentrism, a term coined by William Graham Sumner, is the tendency to look at the world primarily from the perspective of your own ethnic culture and the belief that that is in fact the “right” way to look at the world. This leads to making incorrect assumptions about others’ behavior based on your own norms, values, and beliefs. For instance, reluctance or aversion to trying another culture’s cuisine is ethnocentric. Social scientists strive to treat cultural differences as neither inferior nor superior. That way, they can understand their research topics within the appropriate cultural context and examine their own biases and assumptions at the same time.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

This approach is known as “cultural relativism.” Cultural relativism is the principle that an individual person’s beliefs and activities should be understood by others in terms of that individual’s own culture. A key component of cultural relativism is the concept that nobody, not even researchers, comes from a neutral position. The way to deal with our own assumptions is not to pretend that they don’t exist but rather to acknowledge them, and then use the awareness that we are not neutral to inform our conclusions.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

An example of cultural relativism might include slang words from specific languages (and even from particular dialects within a language). For instance, the word “tranquilo” in Spanish translates directly to “calm” in English. However, it can be used in many more ways than just as an adjective (e.g., the seas are calm). Tranquilo can be a command or suggestion encouraging another to calm down. It can also be used to ease tensions in an argument (e.g., everyone relax) or to indicate a degree of self-composure (e.g., I’m calm). There is not a clear English translation of the word, and in order to fully comprehend its many possible uses, a cultural relativist would argue that it would be necessary to fully immerse oneself in cultures where the word is used.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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Cultural context: Depending on your cultural background, this may or may not look delicious.

Material Culture
In the social sciences, material culture is a term that refers to the relationship between artifacts and social relations.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES
Give examples of material culture and how it can help sociologist understand a particular society

KEY TAKEAWAYS
Key Points
Studying a culture ‘s relationship to materiality is a lens through which social and cultural attitudes can be discussed. People’s relationship to and perception of objects are socially and culturally dependent.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
A view of culture as a symbolic system with adaptive functions, varying from place to place, led anthropologists to conceive of different cultures as having distinct patterns of enduring conventional sets of meaning.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Anthropologists distinguish between material culture and symbolic culture, not only because each reflects different kinds of human activity, but also because they constitute different kinds of data and require different methodologies to study.
This view of culture, which came to dominate anthropology between World War I and World War II, implied that each culture was bounded and had to be understood as a whole, on its own terms.
The result is a belief in cultural relativism, which suggests that there are no ‘better’ or ‘worse’ cultures, just different cultures.
Key Terms
material culture: In the social sciences, material culture is a term, developed in the late 19th and early 20th century, that refers to the relationship between artifacts and social relations.
Symbolic culture: Symbolic culture is a concept used by archaeologists, social anthropologists and sociologists to designate the cultural realm constructed and inhabited uniquely by Homo sapiens.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
In the social sciences, material culture refers to the relationship between artifacts and social relations. Material culture consists in physical objects that humans make. These objects inevitably reflect the historical, geographic, and social conditions of their origin. For instance, the clothes that you are wearing might tell researchers of the future about the fashions of today.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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Clothes as Material Culture: Fashion is part of material culture.

People’s relationship to and perception of objects are socially and culturally dependent. Accordingly, social and cultural attitudes can be discussed through the lens of a culture’s relationship to materiality.

Material culture is also a term used by historians, sometimes termed “material history,” which refers to the study of ancient objects and artifacts in order to understand how a particular culture was organized and functioned over time.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

This view of culture as a symbolic system with adaptive functions, varying from place to place, led anthropologists to view different cultures as having distinct patterns of enduring conventional sets of meaning. Anthropologists thus distinguish between material culture and symbolic culture, not only because each reflects different kinds of human activity, but also because they constitute different kinds of data and require different methodologies to study.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

This view of culture, which came to dominate anthropology between World War I and World War II, implied that each culture was bounded and had to be understood as a whole, on its own terms. The result is a belief in cultural relativism, which suggests that there are no ‘better’ or ‘worse’ cultures, just different cultures.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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Periodicals as Material Culture: Media, such as magazines, are part of material culture.

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Computers as Material Culture: Computers are an increasingly common part of everyday life for most people. They constitute an increasingly significant part of our material culture.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Nonmaterial Culture
Non-material culture includes the behaviors, ideas, norms, values, and beliefs that contribute to a society’s overall culture.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES
Analyze the different ways norms, values and beliefs interact to form non-material culture

KEY TAKEAWAYS
Key Points
In contrast to material culture, non-material culture does not include physical objects or artifacts.
It includes things that have no existence in the physical world but exist entirely in the symbolic realm.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Examples are concepts such as good and evil, mythical inventions such as gods and underworlds, and social constructs such as promises and football games.
The concept of symbolic culture draws from semiotics and emphasizes the way in which distinctively human culture is mediated through signs and concepts.
The symbolic aspect of distinctively human culture has been emphasized in anthropology by Emile Durkheim, Claude Lévi-Strauss, Clifford Geertz, and many others.
Semiotics emphasises the way in which distinctively human culture is mediated through signs and concepts.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.
Key Terms
social construct: Social constructs are generally understood to be the by-products of countless human choices rather than laws resulting from divine will or nature.
Culture as a general concept consists of both material and non-material culture. Material culture is a term developed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, that refers to the relationship between artifacts and social relations. In contrast, non-material culture does not include physical objects or artifacts. Examples include any ideas, beliefs, values, or norms that shape a society.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

When sociologists talk about norms, they are talking about what’s considered normal, appropriate, or ordinary for a particular group of people. Social norms are group-held beliefs about how members should behave in a given context. Sociologists describe norms as laws that govern society’s behaviors.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers. Values are related to the norms of a culture, but they are more global and abstract than norms. Norms are rules for behavior in specific situations, while values identify what should be judged as good or evil. Flying the national flag on a holiday is a norm, but it exhibits patriotism, which is a value. Wearing dark clothing and appearing solemn are normative behaviors at a funeral. In certain cultures they reflect the values of respect and support of friends and family. Different cultures honor different values. Finally, beliefs are the way people think the universe operates. Beliefs can be religious or secular, and they can refer to any aspect of life. For instance, many people in the U.S. believe that hard work is the key to success.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

Members take part in a culture even if each member’s personal values do not entirely agree with some of the normative values sanctioned in the culture. This reflects an individual’s ability to synthesize and extract aspects valuable to them from the multiple subcultures they belong to.The Modern Day View On Society And Culture Assignment Papers.

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