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Lecture 1

PSYC14H3 Lecture 1: Lecture 1

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Sisi Tran

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PSYC14 Lecture 1
-Cognitive processes.
-Groups of people.
-Transferred from people to people (generations).
-Accumulates over time.
-The way that it is communicated is different.
-1) Humans interact with environments:
Ecocultural components: Culture is both constrained and shaped by a group’s habitat.
Culture is adapted to the environment.
People develop language, writing, tools, skills, abstract ideas, moral and aesthetic standards, social
patterns, norms…in adapting to their ecosystem.
When the environment changes, then the culture also changes.
-2) Culture consists of shared elements:
Shared practices and shared meanings.
In specifying the limits of culture, people have looked to these shared elements as one set of defining
Do people share a language? A time period? A geographic region?
-3) Transmission to others:
Teaching is a transmission of knowledge.
Types of transmission: Vertical (from parent to offspring. The parent sees the child doing something
wrong and teaches them the better thing to do). Horizontal (from peer to peer. More of a mutual
process. Transmits lots of values of a culture). Oblique (within the system of a society.)
Enculturation: Process of transmitting cultural elements to others in one’s own community, serves as a
source of continuity.
Acculturation: Another form of transmission that takes place from outside a person’s own cultural
group, serves as a source of discontinuity.
Definition of Culture
-Culture emerges in adaptive interactions between humans and environments.
-Culture consists of shared elements.
-Culture is transmitted across time.
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