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Culture and Agriculture

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University of British Columbia
SOCI 100
Debra Pentecost

Oct 7, 2012 soci notes ''The war against this enemy is more than a military conflict. It is the decisive ideological struggle of the 2 1st century, and the calling of our generation.'' - George W. Bush (5th anniversary of 9/11) Cultural Integration - Various element of cultural system work together - ''War on Terror'' + Patriot Act + decrease civil liberties India's Sacred Cow - Marvin Harris - Highlights what aspect of cultural ignorance? o Ethnocentrism  Looking through the lenses of our own values to view other cultures - Who does Marvin Harris argue is guilty of being ethnocentric? o Western-trained agronomists - Why is defining cows as sacred necessary for human survival in India? - What evidence does Harris use to support his argument? Practical reasons: Economic/Agricultural - Cow love is an active element in a complex, finely articulated material & cultural order. - 'A farmer who owns a cow owns a factory for making oxen' - Dung used for: o Fire fuel o Fertilizer o Line the floors o Children would collect dung and trade it as a commodity - 1960s: when Western-trained agronomists first came and introduced modern technology to India and its farms - 'The Green Revolution
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