Class Notes (836,136)
Canada (509,645)
SOCI 254 (101)
Uli Locher (67)
Lecture

Culture and Development

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Department
Sociology (Arts)
Course
SOCI 254
Professor
Uli Locher
Semester
Fall

Description
Culture and Development - Does culture shape devel? Or devel shape culture? - Culture = blueprint for action, composit of beliefs, norms, tradits, etc. - Cultures produce religs, produce instits - Grps evolve over time + cultures evolve w/them H: big time lag b/w culture + devel - Comparable to biological evolution (cultural Darwinism) - If there is advantage for social sphere, it will be retained - Soc grps produce cultural adaptations - Distinc b/w human experience + our analysis - Ex: Haitian earthquake  Experience = mass destruction + deaths, reactions = divine punishment  Consequence = human adaptation, change sinful ways to prevent another earthquake  Observation as soc sci = soc invoked relig concepts to face off disas sit Does culture determine development? - No  environ determinism - For variety of reasons, Eurasian pops had s/advantages over Am pops + in terms control disease  Immunity b/c E/W orientation of continents + domestication of animals  Could produce more calories + had close proximity to animals, devel immunity  Biogeographic differences produce huge differences in past + present devel - Materialism: material possession produce concepts, power holders control materials - Culture = ideological superstructure used to maintain those in power - In interest of power holders maintain ideological structure - Conflict e/where, all about control of resources - Poli action leads to cultural change, those in power manage enforce cultural powers - Cultural values imp H: not key impact of devel Weber’s Protestant Ethnic Thesis - Key concepts: predestination, calling, inner-worldly acesticism - Calling: worldly activity has relig charac (be active in God’s work) - Predestination: belief creates psych need to know about one’s selection - Material success: in one’s work is indication of selection - Asceticism: prevents squandering profits - Profits: used to further expand good work - Therefore: profits constit investment capital  spirit of capitalism - Psych need for stability answered by predestination - Since all resources loaned by god + life is for god, fact doing alright means on god’s good side - Calvinism - Not called to change activities, just be good @what you do - If follow rules, more discip, closer to god, better workers  Producing profits, which are gods b/c you’re doing god’s work - 2 sides of Weber: - Spiritual/ideological explanation of economic devel no more than hypothesis - Weber adds: there’s an equal justification to look for econ explanations in relig ideology - Both hypotheses = fruitful yet limited + shouldn’t be taken as absolutes - Real Weber: interaction of culture + material conditions - Support of theory - Modern capitalism ideology + structure did get a hold in Calvinist Eur first (not Luth/Cath Eur)  S/late Calvinists (“Puritans”) did act like good capitalists - Critique - S/capitalist behave has been docu in pre-reformation Eur - Methodological flaws in most Weber Theory research - Lasting contribution - Calvinist ethnic seen as cause of capitalist spirit - Calvinism sponsored activities new middle class in 17 century - Emerging discipline in lifestyle // qualities of discip + rationality needed in emerging capitalism - Useful to look, among other things, for role of cultural values in emergence of modern world - Research in Weber tradit - Many ill-conceived attempts  Greely’s 1963 call for a moratorium  David McClelland 1961  Rapid econ growth explained by external factors H: looks @internal factors  Summary of findings:  Individ motivations explain econ growth (anti-Marxist)  Thoughts + intentions produce behaviour + results (anti-Darwinian)  Civilization doesn’t emerge out of unconscious, primitive urges (anti-Freudian)  Individ need for achievement creates new forms of civilization  Granato, Inglehart, Leblang (1996) “The effect of cultural values”  Dependent variable: econ growth rate 1960-1989  Independent variable: public’s score on 4-item Achivement Motivation Index  % in ea/soc emph thrift + determination as imp things for child to learn - % emph obedience + relig faith  Control variables: 4 variables referring to socio-econ levels @start of growth period Weber McClelland Granato et al. Individ motivation Cultural values influ Hypothesis Ideology shapes econ sys determs econ growth econ growth Cultural data sources Writings of key Children’s books World Values Survey for mod soc informants Cultural data sources Folk tales collected @Yale for preliterate soc Uni Methods of analysis Impressionistic, selective Correlation Regression Analytical tool Ideal type Proxies + generalisation Generalisation Result Suggestive of verification Suggestive of verification Verification Conclusions: Does cultural determine development? - Culture is not produced in a void - Cultural patterns emerge in response to material constraints - Culture = specific to grps, times, condits - Culture interacts + changes w/poli + material factors - Institutionalised cultural patterns can have powerful poli + material impacts - So yes, culture determs devel How culture determines economic success (“the Weber thesis” - Ideological change (conversion) - Associational change (exclusion) - Behavioural change (discipline) - Work habits - Prosperity The Causal Chain in the “Weber Thesis” as Applied in the Guadeloupe Research Micro-credit Rational investment Cultural change Behavioural change (myth + ritual) (discipline) Prosperity Associational change
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