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Sociolology Chapter 3 Notes

by: Cassandra Danhof

Sociolology Chapter 3 Notes SOCI 1301

Marketplace > Lone Star College-CyFair > Sociology > SOCI 1301 > Sociolology Chapter 3 Notes
Cassandra Danhof
Lone Star College-CyFair
GPA 3.21
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These notes go over what culture is, the elements of culture, pop culture, sub culture, and cultural change, and the theoretical perspectives on culture.
Principles of Sociology
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Cassandra Danhof on Saturday September 24, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to SOCI 1301 at Lone Star College-CyFair taught by Pvorsh in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 46 views. For similar materials see Principles of Sociology in Sociology at Lone Star College-CyFair.

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Date Created: 09/24/16
Sociology Chapter 3: Culture  Learning Objectives Important Terms  3.1 What is Culture? Differentiate between culture and society Material Culture: The objects or  ● Culture is the traits of a population which  belongings of a group of people makes their behaviors, values, practices and  Nonmaterial Culture: The ideas,  beliefs  attitudes, and beliefs of a society ○ The total practices of  Cultural Universals: Patterns or  people traits that are globally common to  ● Society is the community that surround  all societies the individual Ethnocentrism:The practice of  ○ The general humanity evaluating another culture  Explain material versus nonmaterial culture according to the standards of  ● Material culture are the tangible objects in  one’s own culture  culture. Things like cars or places of worship Cultural Imperialism: The  ○ Material Culture Example:  deliberate imposition of one’s own  A classroom in a school cultural values on another culture  ● Nonmaterial culture is the views and  Cultural Shock: An experience of  beliefs of the society that cannot be seen  personal disorientation when  ○ Nonmaterial Culture  confronted with an unfamiliar way  Example: How the classroom is taught  of life  and what lessons are presented  Cultural Relativism: The practice  Discuss the concept of cultural universalism as it relates  of assessing a culture by its own  to society standards, and not in comparison  ● Cultural universalism is a cultural aspect  to another culture  all societies can relate to  Xenocentrism: A belief that  ● Ex. Family units are a universal concept,  another culture is superior to one’s but the structure/function of the family unit varies own ○ Young adult asians are  more welcomed to stay inside of their  nuclear family and build their own inside  of it, whereas in the US it is more  customary for young adults to go out and  live on their own to start a new family ● Other universals are food, clothing,  shelter, language, and humor Compare and contrast ethnocentrism and xenocentrism ● Ethnocentrism is when you evaluate a  culture based on your own cultural standards and you see your culture as better than another's ○ Ex. Being weirded out by  other cultures eating guinea pigs or dogs  while having no concern over pigs and  cows  ● Xenocentrism is when you evaluate a  culture based on your own cultural standards and you see someone else’s culture as better than  yours  ○ Ex. Foreign exchange  students often find it difficult to associate  their own cultural beliefs with that of the  culture they are currently in, so they  believe that the place they are in has  more noble cultural beliefs than the place  they came from  3.2 Elements of Culture Understand how values and beliefs differ from norms Values: A culture’s standard for  ● Values and beliefs are convictions of  discerning what is good and just in society that we believe are good and just. It  society defines what is good, bad, and ugly Beliefs: Tenets or convictions that  ○ Ex. The value of marriage  people hold to be true to be monogamous Ideal Culture: The standards a  ○ They change as people  society would like to embrace and  collect societal beliefs  live up to  ■ Ex. The  Real Culture: The way society  value of marriage happening  really is based on what actually  between a man and a women has  occurs and exists changed to include the LGBT  Sanction: a way to authorize or  community formally disapprove of certain  ● Norms are the behaviors as a result of the behaviors  values/beliefs set  Social Control: A way to  ○ Ex. Drinking while driving is encourage conformity to cultural  valued as a bad thing. However, the norm  norms changes whether or not a person is drunk  Norms: The visible and invisible  Explain the significance of symbols and language to  rules of conduct through which  culture societies are structured  ● Symbols are significant to culture because Formal Norms: Established,  it helps establish meaning to a certain value or  written rules  belief Informal Norms: Causal behaviors ○ Ex. Wearing a wedding ring that are generally and widely  means you're married, and a stop sign  conformed to  means you need to stop Mores: The moral views and  ○ Symbols are often taken for principles of group  granted, but they are very important. For  Folkways: Direct, appropriate  example, the stick symbols on a  behavior in the day­to­day  men’s/women’s bathroom sign instead of  practices and expressions of a  a sign for a unisex bathroom culture ● Language is a communicative symbolic  Symbols: Gestures or objects that  system have meanings associated with  ○ Society often speaks one  them that are recognized by  primary language, following the rules of  people who share a culture  this specific language Language: A symbolic system of  ■ Ex. The  communication alphabet symbolizes the different  Sapir­Whorf Hypothesis: The way  shapes referred to in sound  that people understand the world  ○ There are also regional  based on their form of language  differences between different dialects of a  language ■ Ex. The pop  v.s soda v.s coke controversy    Explain the Sapir­Whorf hypothesis ● The Sapir­Whorf hypothesis is the  hypothesis that people understand their culture  through the language expressed in it  ○ If the person can’t describe the experience, they have not had that  experience  Discuss the role of social control within culture ● Society takes control of culture by either  praising or punishing certain values through  rewards and punishments  ○ Ex. Getting good grades  will get you praise from your parents and  teachers  ○ Breaking norms leads to  sanctification from society  3.3 Pop Culture, Subculture, and Cultural Change  Discuss the roles of both high culture and pop culture  High Culture: The cultural pattern  within society of a society’s elite  ● The roles between high culture and pop  Popular Culture: Mainstream,  culture are the differences between the wealthy  widespread patterns among a  and the mainstream.  society’s population ○ High culture is associated  Subculture: Groups that share a  with intelligence, prestige, and wealth specific identification, apart from a ○ Popular culture is more  society’s majority, even as the  accessible to the people but sometimes  members exist within a larger  considered more “low­brow” activities  society ● The difference between high culture and  Counterculture: Groups that reject  popular culture change as time goes on and oppose society’s widely  ○ Ex. Shakespearean plays  accepted cultural patterns used to be part of the popular culture, but  Innovation: New objects or ideas  are now associated with high culture  introduced to culture for the first  Differentiate between subculture and counterculture time  ● Subculture is a smaller culture within an  Discoveries: Things and ideas  existing larger culture  found from what already exists ○ Ex. people who have  Culture Lag: The gap of time  tattoos are people in a subculture, but  between the introduction of  they still identify with the larger society material culture and nonmaterial  ● Counterculture is a subculture that rejects  culture’s acceptance of it  some of the social norms of the larger culture  Globalization: The integration of  ○ They may defy larger  international trade and finance  society by accepting their own set of rules  markets  to live by Diffusion: The spread of material  ○ Ex. Cults  and nonmaterial culture from one  Explain the role of innovation, invention, and discovery of culture to another  culture ● Innovation refers to an initial appearance  in society; can be discovered or invented ○ Inventions are when  something new is formed from an existing  object or concept ■ Vacuum  cleaners and radios  ○ Discoveries are when  previously unknown aspects of reality are  revealed  ■ Galileo and  the discovery of Saturn Understand the role of cultural lag and globalization in  culture  ● Cultural lag is the time elapsed between  the introduction of something and its acceptance  into society  ● Globalization is an integration of finance  and business into an international world  3.4 Theoretical Perspectives on Culture Discuss the major theoretical approaches to cultural  interpretation  ● A functionalist perspective acknowledges  that there are many parts of culture that work  together as a system to fulfill society’s needs ○ Culture is a reflection of  society’s values  ● Conflict theories see culture as inherently  unequal, based upon factors like gender, race,  and age ○ Inequalities exist within a  culture’s value system; therefore, a  society’s cultural norms benefit some  people but hurt others  ● An interactionist is primarily in culture as  experienced in the daily interactions between  individuals and the symbols that comprise a  culture  ○ Every object and action  has a symbolic meaning, and language  serves as means for people to represent  and communicate their interpretations of  these meanings to others 


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