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Difinition of culture - Essay Example

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Howard Becker defines culture as a people’s way of life in their social groupings (Ferguson 95). Such life includes aspects of defined thinking patterns, feelings, as well as an understanding that have acquired a common experience and past from generation to another…
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Culture Howard Becker defines culture as a people’s way of life in their social groupings (Ferguson 95). Such life includes aspects of defined thinking patterns, feelings, as well as an understanding that have acquired a common experience and past from generation to another. Culture, therefore, is a reflection of social patterns, emotions and practices that stem from social interactions within a society.
Culture is very crucial for human beings as it give them an identity. It provides rules and regulations within which one has to operate to live in a society. Such rules also govern how people communicate, celebrate, behave or react to various stimuli in their society. Culture has a major impact on humans’ existence and thinking (Ferguson 97). It is important to develop a society, understand people and other cultures and thus bring harmony among civilizations. Culture is a central pillar of every society that without it, stability and progress become impossible. All the social-economic and political activities existing in a society must have a strong cultural backing. Consideration of spiritual and cultural values in a society is very important for the formation and development of creative capabilities and the relationship between individuals. Culture, therefore, serves to promote the humanization of social relationship for the future of human civilization.
Culture provides knowledge that is essential for physical and peaceful coexistence between man and environment (Ferguson 99). Culture has made it possible for man to adapt and modify his environment to a state that best suits his convenience. Culture has contributed to the preservation of knowledge preservation and its transmission through generations using language as a transferring and accumulation medium. On the contrary, animals do not enjoy this benefit because they do not have a culture. Culture, therefore, makes man a human being.
Hunan-kay Trask defines cultural commodification as the exploitation that occurs in social components such as beliefs, customs, and rituals. The modifications occur via innovations, inventions, and discoveries and contacts with other cultures and marketing done without the society’s permission. He argues that many components of the Hawaiian and Polynesian cultures such as language, dress patterns, and traditional dance forms have been a market for mass consumption for the tourists (Ferguson 116). In the Hawaiian culture, younger siblings must serve and respect their older one. Individuals had to cultivate the land to get food and always work together in harmony for the societal well-being. The rules required chiefs to maintain order in the society and to ensure that there is food abundance to feed the people. All these forms the bedrock of Hawaiian values, to love and make the land flourish.
Today, some people call this relationship stewardship, a term that does not convey spiritual and genealogical connections. The American government almost killed the Hawaiian language when they banned it in 1896 when Hawaii became an American territory. English became the language to conduct all the government operations including learning in schools, despite the majority including non-natives speaking Hawaii (Ferguson 117).
Western civilization was to blame for the cultural commodifications experienced in Hawaii. The rejection of nuclear family as the basic society unit in favor of individualism among others continue to infuriate the Hawaiian people. Today, Hawaiian language is undergoing tremendous revival including its incorporation in schools, as well as using two official dialects, Hawaii, and English.
Work Cited
Ferguson, Susan. Mapping the social landscape readings in sociology. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2013. Print. Read More
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