SY101 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Ingroups And Outgroups, Escalator, I Am Canadian

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6 Feb 2016
Sociology – Chapter Three – Culture
What is Culture?
Non-material or material
Not natural, or biologically determined
oCulture is something we create through society
Learned and shared ways of believing and of doing become core and are part of our taken-
for-granted assumptions concerning
The lens through which we perceive and evaluate what is going on around us
Culture shock – when your culture comes up against someone else (Dog eating example)
Components of Symbolic Culture
Values, Norms, and Sanctions
oGood, bad, beautiful or ugly
oNorms grow out of these social expectations or rules of behaviour
oSanctions are positive or negative reactions to the ways in which people adhere to
Parking ticket, prison sentence, look
Elevator example, nose picking example, music
Folkways and Mores
oFolkways norms that are not strictly enforced
Standing on the right side of the escalator
oMores are core to our values and demand conformity
oA norm that is so strongly engrained that violation is greeted with revulsion
Pierre Bourdieu and Culture Capital
oHabits and dispositions that people from di/erent groups share
Subcultures and Countercultures
oSubculture is a world within a dominant culture
oCounterculture is a culture that has opposite
Culture and Taken for Granted Orientations to Life
oWhen our culture has become the ‘right’ culture and that everyone else must be the
same. Judging others ways of doing things by one’s own
oIn-group loyalties versus discrimination
Cultural Relativism
oCultural relativism is the principle that an individual human's beliefs and activities
should be understood by others in terms of that individual's own culture.
oThis notion of appreciating a di/erent culture for its history and presence has come
under criticism
Anthropologist Robert Edgerton “Sick Societies”
oNeither relativism or ethnocentrism are good ways of dealing with culture
oJudge by their people’s happiness, health, survival, elements of exploitation
oStep back and judge the practices by their e/ect on people
Values in Canadian Society
Pluralistic Society
oComprised of multiple cultural, religious, racial, ethnic, special interest groups
Quebec as a Distinct Society
Native Peoples in Canada
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