Culture then is never completely static culture is

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Culture, then, is never completely static Culture is Learned: Culture is not instinctive or innate in the human species; it is not part of the biological equipment of human beings That is, we are symbol-making creatures capable of attaching meaning to particular objects and actions and communicating these meanings to other people. Socialization: when we learn the culture of a society, or a group within society, we share with others a common understanding of words and symbols Culture channels human behavior: Culture, because it emerges from social interaction, is an inevitable development of human society This is essential in the maintenance of any social system because it provides two crucial functions - predictability of action and stability The process of internalization (during which society’s demands become part of the individual, acting to control her or his behavior) is accomplished in mainly 3 ways
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First, culture becomes part of the human makeup through the belief system into which a child is born Second, culture is internalized through psychological identification with the groups to which individuals belong (membership groups) or to which they want to belong ( reference groups ) Third, culture is internalized by providing the individual with an identity Culture even shapes thought and perception What we see and how we interpret what we see are determined by culture Culture maintains boundaries Ethnocentrism: a universal tendency to deprecate the ways of people from other societies as wrong, old-fashioned, inefficient, or immoral and to think of the ways of one’s own group as superior (as the only right way) Examples: Viewing other culture’s food choices as weird or bizarre Examples of ethnocentrism from US history-manifest destiny, exclusionary immigration laws (Oriental Exclusion Act) Ethnocentrism, because it implies feelings of superiority, leads to division and conflict among subgroups within a society and among societies Types of Shared Knowledge: the concept of culture refers to knowledge that is shared by the members of a social organization Symbols: language refers to symbols that evoke similar meanings in different people Technology: technology refers to the information, techniques, and tools used by people to satisfy their varied needs and desires Two types of technology can be distinguished: Material technology: refers to knowledge of how to make and use things The things produced are not part of the culture - they represent the knowledge that people share and that makes is possible to build and use the object Social technology: the knowledge about how to establish, maintain, and operate the technical aspects of social organization Ideologies: shared beliefs about the physical, social, and metaphysical worlds Ideologies help individuals interpret events They also provide rationale for particular forms of action
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