Cultural Anthropology Week 2
Cultural Anthropology Week 2 ANTH2800
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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ciara Peace on Saturday September 5, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to ANTH2800 at University of Toledo taught by Seamus Metress in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 87 views. For similar materials see Cultural Anthropology in Language at University of Toledo.
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Date Created: 09/05/15
Biocultural Anthropology Notes Week 2 Chapters 1 and 3 will be on the exam Society vs Culture Society a group of animals that maintains social relationships while sharing a common territory Human society people who share a common culture language and geographic area A specific culture a system of life ways and ideas shared by members of a human society as a learned set of responses to the environment Culture those practices that guide human behavior without specific reference to a specific group Ideal vs Real Culture Ideal what people say they do Real what they actually do Ex America would always say it s free and gives equal rights to everyone but then there have been all of the problems with slavery women s rights gay rights etc Mentalist vs Totalist Mentalist only the ideational or conceptual facets of a group Totalist the totality of a people s way of letting a population live and reproduce itself reates communities to their environment culture as an adaptive mechanism Cultural Process Enculturation the process of learning one s language and culture Socialization process of learning to be a member of a social group animals must do this too Acculturation the process of culture change that is the result of more of less continuous contact between two groups can become one culture afrosaxons irishEnglish Diffusion spread of cultural traits and ideas from one culture to another American Indians got boozeguns from the white man Egyptians began with papyrus and that diffused to paper Ethnocentrism the tendency to take for granted the superiority of one s group or culture Causes ack of understanding the result of the enculturation process leading to ingroupoutgroup contrast deiberate cultivation due to nationalism religion ethnicity etc as a defense against personal inadequacies scapegoating personal experience of a negative nature with individual from other group Evaluation neither good or bad binds us leading to bigotry exploitation and genocide heps survival by promoting loyalty unity and morale unavoidable but we must understand it not act on irrational ethnocentric evaluation but the facts Cultural relativism the willingness to look thoughtfully and tolerantly at other cultures 0 What does it mean 0 Traits are neither good or bad 0 Does not imply that I No customs are harmful I No truth or morality I No way to judge good or evil 0 Function and meaning are relative to sociocultural context 0 Permitting others to be different not forcing them to be like us real tolerable o It has helped to break down stereotypes and promoted greater tolerance Cultural relativism and morality we must attempt to differentiate things that are morally wrong and those that are just not our own style culturally difficult sometimes behaviors that harm people physically o Genodde o Germ warfare 0 Ethnic cleansing o Starvation amid plenty o Slavery o Peddle drug to children 0 Infanticide moral standards apply to all it is not meant to allow our companies in foreign countries to use child labor or pay immoral wages it is not moral to harm others by doing things we would not do to one another Eg Banned chemicals and medicines sold elsewhere in the world Cultural Values commonly held ideas of what s acceptable and unacceptable behavior toward the world its inhabitants and the supernatural rightwrong desirableundesirable importanttrivia sacredprofane appropriateinappropriate provide guides to behavior restrain and order behavior can result in conflict individual or group can suppress initiative can foster a spirit of community cooperation resistance etc Social Groups an aggregation of individuals acting together in a joint effort to satisfy certain common needs while sharing a common identity Out group groups we do not belong to In group groups we belong to and interact with 1 Primary groups those to which we are intimately tied a Family b Clique c Platoon d Guerilla cell 2 Secondary group those to which we are more formally and impersonally associated with a Unions b Professional groups Subculture a group within the larger culture that shares a specific cultural pattern that differ from that of the larger culture core 0 Based on 0 Age 0 Gender 0 Race 0 Ethnicity 0 Occupation 0 Religion 0 Region 0 Importance o Leads to difference in enculturation 0 Social conflict individual misconduct is often the result of a clash ofsubcultures I Gang culture 0 CAN be a source of identity and leads to a feeling of belonging in an impersonalruthless world 0 Can help one get ahead Characteristics of Culture general All humans have a biological capacity for culture 0 Humans could not exist without it All cultures have equal potential none are more advances or more primitive The culture concept was developed as 0 An alternative to racism 0 An explanation for worldwide variation in behavior Culture has made us the most dangerous and destructive large animal on the planet Indigenous cultural patterns are being rapidly replaces languagelost ways of life destroyed ritual changes etc Cultures do not exist in isolation the global economy reaches far 0 Antarctica Culture is constantly changing due to 0 Contact between groups 0 Acculturation run into groups 0 Diffusion find something you like and adopt it into your culture 0 Independent discovery and invention within groups 0 We don t have to wait for biology to evolve as culture can adjust itself 0 New technologies are invented every few years rather than once or twice a century or less Culture is learned through human interaction in social groups 0 Transmitted from generation to generation by specific cultural procedures within and between 0 It is kept relatively uniform through social pressure 0 Hair styles clothing etc 0 New adjustments are almost always compromises between the limitations of the past and new opportunities 0 The historical roots of any cultures extend back many generations into the past and heavily influence the ways society chance 0 Culture is cumulative Culture must provide for the biopsychosocial aspects of life 0 Protection from hunger disease and the elements 0 Biopsychosocial security 0 Safety 0 Freedom from fear 0 Positive affect 0 Stress reduction 0 Reproduction of new members 0 Minimum social network of 500 people 0 Necessary to provide material and emotional support to households 0 To collectively create store and reproduce vital cultural info through a common language 0 The household was the fundamental domestic unit for reproducing and maintaining culture the enculturation of the young By the time a child is 2 or 5 she has already acquired a specific cultural tradition It speaks the languages and classifies and catalogs the environment Uses stereotypic gestures and salutations Definite food preference Prejudices start early Culture provides a sense of order Internal order by internalization of norms mores Internal order by laws and physical force External order with other societies 0 Alliances o Treaties o Threat Cultural assumptions 0 Those taken for granted or thought to be true without testing I Allows us to organize our analysis of complicated problems and issues 0 Differentiate the significant and insignificant o Inaccurate assumptions lead to faulty concepts Culture defines reality 0 It provides a set of symbols that are responded to rather than reality 0 Flags 0 It defines situation giving clues to how one should act 0 Fightflight o Laughcry o Punishreward o It defines attitudes values and goals that channels human behavior 0 Coop vs completion 0 Individualism vs communalism o It provides a worldwide view through a system of legends myths and ideas about the supernatural 0 Creation myths spirit stories death ideas Culture is capable of creativity beyond survival the arts and entertainment poetry music dance etc culture is not inflexible but provides a range of behavior norms Culture is a learned set of responses to environmental challenges o It is no different than long teeth claws and running fast 0 It is adaptive 0 Geographic environment I Climate terrain altitude o Biophysical demands I Food water shelter security reproduction o Socioculturalenvironmental I Social changes social stress social controls etc
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