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Unformatted text preview: ANT HROPOLOGY CHAPTER 2 1. Define Culture and Society Culture: Learned behaviors, ideas, and characteristics. Society: a group of people. Can change due to time. The total way of life of any society, not simply to those parts of this way which the society regards as higher or more desirable. In the 1870s it was believed that culture develops in a progressive manner, which is called early evolutionism. Culture is the set of learned behaviors and ideas (beliefs, attitudes, values and ideals) that are characteristic of a particular society or other social group. Society is a group of people who occupy a particular territory and speak a common language not understood by neighboring territories. Pg. 16 2. How is culture commonly shared? Culture is the commonly shared customs of a society. A subculture is the commonly shared customs of a group within a society, which is the central concern of sociologists and increasingly with anthropologists. A subculture is not the same as an ethnic group. Pg. 16 3. How is culture learned? To be considered cultural, it must be learned as well as shared. Humans learn from each other. Language helps us learn rapidly. Learned behaviors: belief, attitude, value, ideal. Individual variation is the source of new culture. If only one person does a certain thing, that represents a personal habit. Pg. 17 4. Controversies about the concept of culture. Should the concept of culture refer to just the rules or ideas behind behavior or should it also include the behaviors or the products of behavior, as is our choice here. Some believe culture has a life of its own. Pg. 17 5. Cultural constraints: Norms are the rules about what is an acceptable behavior according to social scientists. Cultural constraints are of two types: Direct: more obvious, like not wearing clothing in public. Indirect: like speaking a language no one understands. Pg. 18 6. Attitudes that hinder the study of cultures People who judge other cultures solely in terms of their own culture are ethnocentric, they hold an attitude called ethnocentrism. Both ethnocentrism and glorification of other cultures hinder effective study. Pg. 18 7. Cultural Relativism The idea that a societys customs and ideas should be described objectively and understood in the context of that societys problems and opportunitys. Anthropologists differ in their interpretations. Human rights and relativism: is it possible to create a universal standard. Relativism can be a tool for change, could persuade. Pg. 19 8. Describing a culture Understanding what is cultural involves two parts: Separating what is shared from what is individually variable, and understanding whether common behaviors and ideas are learned....
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- Spring '11
- Cultural Anthropology