Cultural Change and the Future of Humanity - Text Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Cultural Change and the Future of Humanity - Text Deck (78):

When do cultures change?

Because systems generally work to maintain stability, cultures are often fairly stable and remain so unless either the conditions they re adapted to or human perceptions of those conditions change dramatically.


How many change occur in a "stable" culture?

Change may occur gradually without altering in any fundamental way the culture's underlying logic.


What is a primary innovation?

The change discovery or invention of a new principle.


What is a secondary innovation?

Something new that results from the deliberate application of known principles.


What can be defined as any new practice, tool, or principle that gains widespread acceptance within a group.



What is the ultimate source of all change?



What corresponds most closely to the West's model of change as predictable and determined

secondary innovations


What must all innovation be in order to assure its acceptance in society?

An innovation must be reasonably consistent with a society's needs, values, and goals if it is to be accepted, this in itself is not enough to assure its acceptance though.


What tends to stand in the way of an innovations acceptance in society?

Force of habit tends to be an obstacle to acceptance; people tend to stick with what they are used to, rather than adopt something new that will require some adjustment on their part.


How much faster can the Dvorak keyboard be learned?

one-third of the time


By what percent does the Dvorak keyboard increase a types accuracy?



By what percent does the Dvorak keyboard increase a typer's speed?



Why hasn't the Dvorak keyboard replaced QWERTY?

The answer is commitment. Because QWERTY had ahead start, by the time Dvorak came along, manufacturers, typists, teachers, salespeople, and office managers were committed to the old keyboard; it was what they were used to.


What is diffusion?

The spread of customs or practices from one culture to another


What is the borrowing of cultural elements from one culture by members of another known as?



What percent of culture, according the Ralph Linton, is borrowed?



What are the most powerful instruments of diffusion in the contemporary world?

The media--specifically, the American media.


What is "a new innovation leading to the loss of an older one"?

cultural loss


What is forcible change?

Innovation, diffusion, and cultural loss all may occur among people who are free to decide what changes they will accept. Not always, however, are people free to make their own choices; often, changes they would not willingly make themselves have been forced on them by some other group, usually in the context of conquest, colonialism, or globalization.


What is acculturation?

Major cultural changes people are forced tomato owing to intensive firsthand contact between societies.


When does acculturation occur?

When groups with different cultural practices come into intensive contact, with subsequent profound changes in the original cultural patters of one or both groups. It always involves an element of force, which can be direct or indirect.


What is a very important variable in acculturation?

An important variable is the disparity in wealth and power, who is dominant and who is subordinate.


What 3 things can happen with acculturation?

1) Merger of fusion occurs when two or more cultures shed their separate identities and form as single culture
2) Sometimes, though, one of the cultures loses its autonomy but retains its identity as a subculture in the form of a caste, class, or ethnic group; this is typical of conquest situations
3) Extinction is the phenomenon whereby so many carriers of a culture die that those who survive often become refugees living among other cultures


What is genocide?

The extermination of one people by another, often in the name of "progress," either as a deliberate act or as the accidental outcome of one people's activities done with little regard for their impact on others.


What is all allied in cases of genocide and forcible cultural change?

religious, economic, and politics interests


What is revitalization?

- a common reaction to forcible change
- revitalization may be viewed as a deliberate attempt by some members of a society to construct a more satisfactory culture by rapidly accepting multiple innovations but them shaping them according to their own world view


What is revolution?

the overthrow of a government by force


When does a resolution occur?

When the scale of discontentment within a society reaches a certain level


What is "nation building" (or "nation killing")?

In their efforts to turn their states into nations, the governing elites of one nationality endeavour to strip the people of other nations within their states of their lands, resources, and sense of identity as people. The phenomenon is so common as to lead anthropologist Pierre Van Den Berghe to label what modern state refer to as "nation building" as, in fact, "nation killing."


True or False: the vast majority of the distinct peoples of the world consented to be ruled boy the governments of the dates they find themselves living within.



What may subversion of revolutionary goals be the result of?

political opponents, or a consequence of the revolutionaries' own cultural background


True or False: Revolution is a relatively recent phenomenon



When has revolution occurred since? Why?

- only during the past 5000 years or so
- a political rebellion requires a centralized political authority to revel against, and states have existed for only 5000 years.
- in societies typified by tribes and bands and in nonindustrial societies lacking central authority, rebellion or political revolution could not have occurered


What is modernization?

Th process of cultural and socioeconomic change, whereby developing societies acquire some of the characteristics of Western industrialized societies.


What is hegemony?

Authority or control; control or dominating influence by one person or group, especially by one political group, over society or by one nation over others.


What is structural differentiation?

The division of single traditional roles, which embrace two or more functions (e.g., political, economic, and religious), into two or more roles, each with a single specialized function.


What are integrative mechanisms?

Cultural mechanisms that oppose a society's differentiation forces; in modernizing societies, they include formal government structures, official state ideologies, political parties, legal codes, and labour and trade unions and other common interest associations.


What is a common term for describing social and cultural changes as they are occurring today?



What are the four subprocesses of modernization?

1) Technological development (the replacement of traditional knowledge and techniques with the application of scientific knowledge)
2) Agricultural development (a shift from subsistence farming to commercial farming)
3) Industrialization (machine production driven by fossil fuels replacing hand production in the home)
4) Urbanization (marked by population movements from rural settlements into cities)


What does modernization bring to the political realm?

Political parties and some form of electoral machinery often appear, in tandem with the development of a bureaucracy.


How does modernization change the education system?

The school system expands, literacy increases, and an indigenous educated elite develops


What is the relationship between religion and modernization?

Religion may become less important as traditional beliefs and practices are undermined


What is the key impact of modernization?

A key impact is on the traditional rights and duties connected with kinship. The strength of the extended family may be weakened as more individualistic, market-driven forces foster the nuclear family form.


How does modernization associate with stratification?

Where stratification is a factor, mobility increases as who you are (ascribed status) becomes less important than what you become (achieved status).


What are structural differentiation and integrative mechanisms features of?



What serves to develop civil society?

integrative mechanisms as they lead to the formation of political parties, official state ideologies, legal codes, an labour and trade unions as well as other common-interest associations


What provided the integrative mechanism, or ideological glue, binding highly differential societies as it was purveyed through institutions like the educational system and the media?



Why does the burden of modernization fall most heavily on women?

- the domestic workload tends to increase, because men are less available to help out
- women often find themselves in an increasingly marginal position; while their world increases, the value assigned to the work they do declines


The wealthiest___percent of the world's population, mostly Westerners, consumes___percent of the goods an services produced.

- 20
- 80


What remains the mechanism by which people solve the challenges of daily existence?



What are the major problems with the enormous body of future-oriented literature that claims to address the many problems facing humanity (2)?

- it views the present social order in the developed world as the best of all worlds
- the tendency to overlook local cultural and environmental contexts such as creating farms in areas that do not receive sufficient rainfall or where local customs do not accept a cash-based economy


What is the idea of a "one-world culture" based on?

The idea that a "one-world culture" is emerging is based largely on the observation that developments in communication, transportation,and trade so closely link the peoples of thew world that they are increasingly wearing the same kinds of clothes, eating the same kinds of food ,reading the same kinds of newspapers, watching the same kinds of television programs, and communicating directly with one another via the Internet.


Could ass world cultures merge into a single world political entity?

One problem with such a prediction is that it ignores the one things that all are states, past and present, irrespective of other differences between them share: a tendency (eventually) to come apart.


What does the creation of Nunavut demonstrate?

The creation of Nunavut cam about from splintering the Northwest Territories, bur rather than the fragmentation of a political entity, it heralded the beginning of self-determination and self-government for Aboriginal peoples in Canada and may provide a model for future self-determination endeavours around the world.


What did the 1970s indigenous peoples organization into self-determination movements culminate with?

The formation of the World Council Indigenous Peoples in 1975. Leaders of this movement see their own societies s community-based, egalitarian, and close to nature and are intent on maintaining them that way.


What is cultural pluralism?

Social and political interaction of people with different ways of living and thinking within the same society.


What does cultural pluralism (ideally) imply?

A rejection fo bigotry, bias, and racism in favour of respect for the cultural traditions of other peoples.


How has cultural pluralism worked out in reality?

In reality, it has rarely worked out ideally.


What is the major barrier to the acceptance and spread of cultural pluralism?



What is the problem with ethnocentrism?

Is that it all too early can eb taken as a charter for manipulating other cultures for the benefit of one's own, even though this does not have to be the choice. When it is, however, unrest, hostility,a nd violence commonly result.


What is the ideology behind the doctrine of apartheid



Which was, until the mid-1990s, the official government policy of South Africa?



What is apartheid?

Racial segregation served to perpetuate the dominance of a white minority over a nonwhite majority through the social, economic, political, military,and cultural constitutions of society.


What do the 1990s confrontation between the Mohawk Nation in Oka, Quebec and the official government policy in South Africa both demonstrate?

The Quebec and South African situations both reveal the willingness of governments house their armies against people of other nationalistpties iwhtin their borders to promote the state's interest.


What is one of the consequences of a system of apartheid, whether official or unofficial or on the state or global level?

The phenomenon of structural violence: violence exerted not by weapons and blows, but by situations, institutions,and social, political, and economic structures.


What is structural violence?

Violence exerted by situations, institutions,and social, political,a economic structures.


What is the following and example of: The source of the violence was an anonymous structure (the economy, superficially the ambling sector).

structural violence


What is world hunger a major source of?

A major source of structural violence


What is one factor contributing to the food crisis?

dramatic growth in the world's population


The immediate cause of world hunger has less to do with food___than with food___.

- production
- distribution


Describe how pollution is a structural problem?

- food production constitutes a health hazard when agricultural chemicals poison soils and waters, and when food additives expose people to substances that all too often turn out to be harmful
- the global warming problem -- the greenhouse effect -- caused by the burning of fossil fuels


Where does the structural violence from pollution tend to be greatest?

In the poor countries of the world, where chemicals banned in countries such as Canada re still widely used. Moreover, industrial countries have taken advantage of the lax environmental regulations of developing states to get rid of hazardous wastes.


Up until about 1950. what did growth in the world's food supply come from? Now what does it come from?

Came almost entirely from expanding the amount of cultivated land. Since then, it has come increasingly from the high-energy inputs of chemical fertilizers that new high-yield varieties of crops depend on, of pesticides and herbicides, and of fuel to run tractors and other mechanical equipment, including irrigation pumps. The source of almost all this energy is oil.


What is causing a rising tide of migration from the impoverished countries to the more affluence ones of Europe and North America?

the combination of overpopulation and poverty


What is bound to result in increased structural violence in the form of higher death rates in the world's developing countries that will have an impact and developed countries, with they relatively stable oblations and high living standards?

insufficient or too costly food supplies


What is replacement reproduction?

When birthrates and death rates are in equilibrium; people produce only enough offspring to replace themselves when they die.


What does the key to our continued survival lie in?

Our ability and willingness to see the earth as a benevolent host rather than a resource to exploit, and our fellow humans as partners rather than competitors. As partners we can find equitable solutions to our problems.


What is the greatest danger we face with regard to humanity's future?

The greatest danger we face is apathy -- a human tendency to pretend that nothing is wrong, that someone else will fix it, or, even worse, that there is nothing we can do. Whether we focus environmental issues, human rights, or fair distribution of economic resources, each of us can make a difference.