PowerPoint_Lecture_Section_1.2

PowerPoint_Lecture_Section_1.2 - Section 1.2 Technology and...

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Unformatted text preview: Section 1.2 Technology and Social & Cultural Change Section Readings: Nolan and Lenski: Chapter 3 Rudi Volti: Chapter 2 Also included in this sections materials: “Behind China’s Internet Firewall” (A video) Nolan & Lenski: Chapter 3 “The Evolution of Human Societies” o In Chapter 3 (in the “Assigned Readings” folder), Nolan and Lenski examine forces that influence the evolution of human societies: (1) those that preserve much of the existing store of information from generation to generation (2) those that produce new information and social/cultural arrangements (3) those that determine which elements survive and which are eliminated. Forces of Continuity Forces of continuity are features of a society that act to preserve much of the existing information and structure of a society. 1) In the absence of a clearly better alternative, people will keep doing what they have been doing. (A form of societal inertia) 2) Whenever existing elements of culture are perceived as useful, they will be preserved. 3) Vested Interests. Whenever change is likely to affect the amount and distribution of valued goods (such as wealth and power), those who benefit from the current distribution are likely to use their positions of privilege to resist such change. Forces of Continuity, cont. 4) When existing practices ensure standardized behavior, they will tend to be preserved. 5) When the cost involved in changing is to high, the change will tend not to be adapted. 6) The socialization process (see notes below) is self- reinforcing and can maintain cultural features. 7) Ideologies (sets of values, beliefs, and norms) can preserve the existing social order by portraying it as valued and moral. 8) Human societies are highly complex and highly interdependent. Consequentially, changing one aspect or feature of society usually requires changing many others, which makes the sociocultural system highly resistant to change. Forces Promoting Change o The forces of innovation are the features of a society that create and regulate change. o While societal change is a large and complex process, the various mechanisms can be...
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This note was uploaded on 12/05/2011 for the course ANT 261 taught by Professor Jicha during the Fall '08 term at N.C. State.

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PowerPoint_Lecture_Section_1.2 - Section 1.2 Technology and...

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