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SOCI 2030
Amber Gazso

Culture and Culture Change September 30 and October 3, 2013 Outline * 1. Introducing Culture * 2. Theorizing Culture: In Brief * 3. AFocus on Elements and Realms of Culture * 4. Culture Dynamics and Change Introducing Culture * Apowerful social force that brings people together (social order) but can also pull people apart (conflict) eg. religion * Refers to the ways in which people’s lives are structured, to aesthetic or cultural productions, and to institutions eg. The family, schools * Can specifically include the elements of social life (e.g. symbols, discourses, values, attitudes, beliefs, norms, music) that have meanings to us and influence our behavior -Culture can be thought as something held in common by a group that affects behavior and world view. -Culture is also passed on Values- are shared general beliefs on what is desirable and what is not Norms- are rules about what behavior is permitted and prohibited Two types of norms: 1) folkways 2) mores folkways- norms that if broken do not invite moral condemnation mores- norms that if they are broken invite severe moral condemnation - first exposure to values is through the family Relationship Between Culture and Structure * The labour market is structured along gender lines – occupation segregation by gender * The idea that it is normal or appropriate for this segregation to exist is cultural -Culture is what is deemed as the norm Time and Space * Cultures vary significantly across time and space * Can differ by social groupings that vary on the basis of race/ethnicity, class, gender * Cultural boundaries are difficult to delineate * Changes over time 2. Theorizing Culture: In Brief Cultural Studies * grew out of neo-Marxism * theorists argue that culture can be shaped to maintain hegemony – a form of ideological control that legitimizes inequality o from a Marxist perspective the ruling class produced culture -those who have the power to control the frame of culture can be of certain groups, eg. Whites, men, Christians * Encoding/decoding (Hall) - Encoding: cultural beliefs are encoded in the product - Decoding: hearing seeing and understanding the messages *** test: read hip hop article in green book Symbolic Interactionism * Culture is a vehicle that transmits meanings to people * Culture is generated by individuals in face-to-face encounters * Irving Goffman: the dramaturgical approach – people are like actors in a play and everyone follows a script to conform to broader culture including gender and behavior relating to being a man or a woman - we manage our impressions of ourselves -backstage is who you truly are often in your home or in your sport, in other aspects of life you are on the front stage and manage the impression you give to others. 3. AFocus on Elements, Realms of Culture Elements: * Language: a system of symbols, of words both written and spoken * We make sense of our lives through language  We inter
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