Sociology, Anthropology and Criminology 48-101 Lecture 3: Notes on Culture

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Sociology, Anthropology and Criminology

Lecture 3: Culture  The moment you were born, you don't do anything that is not cultural  Our behaviours are different from animals  We learn to perceive information, thus we share the common knowledge between cultures  Non-material culture  ideas, concepts  When people interact with each other and share knowledge, that is a society  Society and culture are interdependent  People cannot exist in society without culture  Human journey o Planet earth: 4.7 billion years ago o Living organism: 3 billion years ago o Land animals: 400 million years ago o Mammals: 180 million years ago o Primates: 70 million years ago o Humans: 2 million years ago  Secret of Human Success o Darwin? Survival of fittest and natural selection  Characteristics of Primates o Very sociable (society; it allows cooperating, sharing ideas, defending themselves, working together) o High intelligence (learning; trial and error, learn from experience and mistakes) o Sensitive hands (writings, working) o Extremely vocal (language) o Upright posture (back pain?)  Human have additional characteristics o Year-round sexual accessibility (stable social relations) o Long period of dependence of human infants on adults (division of labour)  Values are abstract principles about desirable goals whether right or wrong o Result in judgement and perceptions (things we should do or shouldn’t do) o Good vs. bad  Norms are when values are patterned, institutionalized, followed by stable relationships o Guides actions, result in sanction o Three types of norms  Folkway  we clean your plates  More  survival of society depends on it  Taboos  what you shall or shall not o When taboos are informed by agencies, they become laws o All laws are based on norms, norms on values; not all values become norms and not all norms become law o All laws, norms, and values are religious based  Besides norms, we have beliefs (source: religious) o Descriptive beliefs  What is, what was, and what will be  describing certain behaviours o Normative  Ideas about what should be, what must be  How is culture produced? Institution  Organized by social values to meet needs o Family  marriage, divorce, child bearing o Religion  your church, temple, pray, to give meaning to life (where a
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