What is culture?
Was used as synonym for civilization before the 20th century
→important because it implied a hierarchy
Learned socially acquired traditions of thought and behaviour found within human societies
→socially acquired lifestyles
→patterns of belief and behaviour
What are the characteristics of culture?
→culture is adaptive: refers to a process of adjustment that plants and animals make to their
environment that increase their rates of survival, leads to improvement of that species over
→cultures are integrated: holism
→culture is learned: we're not born knowing how to behave properly in the society we were
born into, we must learn, adopted and modified by each generation
→Cultures change and interact: cultures are not static, every culture has a history and is
modified, no culture is isolated
What is the difference between an emic and an etic approach to culture?
Emic: describes culture from the participants POV--observer uses concepts and distinctions that are
meaningful and appropriate to the participants
Etic: Describes the culture from the observers perspective--observer uses concepts and distinctions that
are meaningful and appropriate to the observer
What are the differences between "Materialist and "Interpretive" theories of culture?
Scientific/Materialist (cause-effect explanations)