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Defining Culture and Identities
Transcript of Defining Culture and Identities
Symbols and Rituals
Symbols: verbal and nonverbal language
these differ based on cultural experiences, native language and country of origin
examples: peace sign, thumbs up
Rituals: socially essential collective activities that exist within a culture
not all members of a culture share the same rituals
non-recognition or non-celebration of certain rituals do not revoke membership in cultural grouping
examples: holidays, sporting events, political observances
Values and Heroes
Values: non-negotiable feelings about what is considered good/bad, beautiful/ugly, normal/abnormal among and between large groups of people belonging to the same culture
those with positions of power within a culture have a stronger influence on values and value systems.
example: zero sum proposition (Lani Guinier)
Heroes: real or imaginary people who serve as behavior models within a culture
What defines YOU?
Who are YOU?
What creates the CRISIS?
WHAT WILL WE LEARN?
What does culture provide for humans?
Meaning/Understanding of the following terms:
Cultures within Cultures
Complex societies like the US are made up of people who have distinct values, norms and rules for their behavior and therefore includes large numbers of subcultural groupings.
We have a tendency to alienate these grouping by choosing to identify others simply by skin color, sexual orientation or political affiliation.
Terms like subculture, co-culture or ethnicity strive to identify these complex groupings.
SUBCULTURES AND ETHNICITY
Exist within dominant cultures and are based on economic means, social class, ethnicity or geographic region.
Social class in the US is seen as easier to overcome than in other countries (ex: India's caste system).
Definition of ethnicity, like race, has changed over time.
NOW: people of same decent or heritage that share common and distinctive traits that are passed through generations.
ethnic identity can affect cultural identity and communication with others.
Refers to the social transmission of thoughts and behaviors that make up (and create new) value systems.
Members who consciously identify themselves as part of a particular group.
this is "cultural identity" (Collier and Thomas, 1988)
each of us has our OWN cultural identity
culture is a regulator of human life and identity (5).
common synonym of Western Civilization
Today, culture is seen as:
totality of thought, experiences and patterns of behavior
Hofstede's categorical ideals:
We can have NO DIRECT KNOWLEDGE of any other cultural identity other than our OWN.
this is a hard pill to swallow in our society.
myth of "the melting pot"
Culture is NOT a GENETIC TRAIT.
culture is bigger than our skin color, place of origin, gender, sexual orientation, etc.
The BURNING Q's
What word have we not discussed?