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nikki clevenger

on 3 March 2015

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Essential Question
What are local and popular cultures?

Essential Question
How are Local Cultures Sustained?
Essential Question
How can Local and Popular Cultures be seen in the Cultural Landscape?
Folk Culture
incorporates a small homogenous population, is rural with cohesive cultural traits
Tradition controls
Resistance to change
Claim Uniqueness

Local culture
People who see themselves as a community
"Folk" is too limiting

Large, heterogeneous groups
embrace cultural traits such as music, dance, clothing, and food preference that change frequently and are ubiquitous on the cultural landscape.
local <----->popular

Belief systems, norms, and values practiced by a people.

Nonmaterial culture: Beliefs, practices, aesthetics, values
Material culture: Constructed items, frequently expressing nonmaterial culture
Establishment of neighborhoods, construction of places of worship and community centers

Beijing, China

Madonna wearing a red string Kabbalah bracelet.

How do cultural traits from local cultures become part of popular culture?

Hearth: the point of origin of a cultural trait.

Contagious diffusion

Hierarchical diffusion

How do cultural traits diffuse?

2.1 Exit Slip
Employing the concept of hierarchical diffusion, describe how you became a “knower” of your favorite kind of music— where is its hearth, and how did it reach you?
Assimilation policies
force people of indigenous cultures to adopt dominant cultures
Native Americans and language
Preservation of customs:

Practices that people routinely follow
Maintained despite popular culture
Local Cultures often have two goals:
1. keeping other cultures out.
(ie. create a boundary around itself)

2. keeping their own culture in.
Avoiding cultural appropriation to keep control over their own culture

Shanghai 1990 vs. 2012
Urban and Rural Local Cultures
Rural Local Cultures
Common economic activity among members

Little Sweden, USA (Lindsborg, KS)
seeking out the regional culture and reinvigorating it in response to the uncertainty of the modern world.

Urban Local Cultures
Ethnic neighborhoods within cities
Creates a space to practice customs
Can cluster businesses, houses of worship, schools to support local culture
Migration into ethnic neighborhoods can quickly change an ethnic neighborhood

Process of making something that was not previously bought and sold a commodity in the marketplace
Material culture objects for sale to outsiders

Question of authenticity of places
Mystical images
Creation of identity from cultural traits

Irish Pub Company Pubs
Irish Pub Company and Guinness Brewing Company created 5 models of pubs and export them around the world.

4.2 Exit Slip
What is the last place you went to or the last product you purchased that claimed to be “authentic?” What are the challenges of defending the authenticity of this place or product while refuting the authenticity of other similar places or products?
Essential Question
How Is Popular Culture Diffused?
Distance-decay: More interaction between closer places than between more distant places

Time-space compression: Interaction dependent on connectedness among places

Hearths of Popular Culture Traits
Typically begin with an idea or good and contagious diffusion
Creation or manufacture of popular culture by
Companies (for example, MTV)
Individuals (for example, Dave Matthews)

Stemming the Tide of Popular Culture
Rapid diffusion of popular culture from major hearths
United States

Government subsidies: Media in local languages
Dominant cultures of wealthy countries: Fundamentalism
Minorities in wealthy countries: Cultural preservation

Typically begins with an idea/good and contagious diffusion.

Companies can create/manufacture popular culture. (ie. MTV)

Individuals can create/manufacture popular culture. (ie. Tony Hawk)

How are hearths of
popular culture traits established?

Satellite Television, Baja California

Often Destroys Folk Culture – or preserves traditions as museum pieces or tourism gimmicks.
Mexican Mariachis; Polynesian Navigators; Cruise Line Simulations
Change in Traditional Roles and Values; Polynesian weight problems

Problems with the Globalization of Culture

Disconnect with landscape: indoor swimming pools? desert surfing?

Surfing at Disney’s Orlando Typhoon Lagoon
Are places still tied to local landscapes?

The Internet is diffusing today, but access varies widely.

Internet Connections

Fig. 4-3: This mental map places major hip hop performers near other similar performers and in the portion of the country where they performed.

A Mental Map of Hip Hop:

Why are popular culture traits usually diffused hierarchically?

How is fashion in popular culture an example of hierarchical diffusion?

Think about your local community (your college campus, your neighborhood, your town). Determine how your local community takes one aspect of popular culture and makes it your own.

4.3 Exit Slip
Convergence of Cultural Landscapes
Cultural landscape - Visible human imprint on the land

Placelessness: Similarity of places of popular cultures everywhere
Complex network of roads and highways
Commercial Structures tend towards ‘boxes’
Planned and Gated Communities more and more common

The hearth of Phish concerts is in the northeastern United States, near where the band began in Vermont.

Convergence of Cultural Landscapes:
The widespread distribution
of businesses and products
creates distinctive landscape
stamps around the world.

Borrowing of idealized landscape images blurs place distinctiveness
Venetian, Main Street USA, etc.
Cultural Landscapes of Local Cultures
Persistence of local cultural landscapes
Presence along “back roads” of wealthy countries
4.4 Exit Slip
Focus on the cultural landscape of your community. Think about the concept of placelessness. Determine whether your community is a “placeless place” or if the cultural landscape of your community reflects the unique identity of the place.
Global Local Continuum
scale is no longer important
McDonalds, Starbucks, Pop Culture in the Arab World
Full transcript