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Culture And Identity Essay

1461 words - 6 pages

Culture and Identity

Outline, what the term ‘Culture’ may be taken to mean and then explain the ways in which it is transmitted by the wider society and the effects that this may have for individual members of the society .


Society and Culture are interlinked, thus sociology defines society as two or more people who interact in such a manner as to share a common culture. Therefore culture is seen as a vital factor of sociology. Culture can be defined as common beliefs, behavior, objectives or characteristics formed within a group of people or society. People tend to define themselves with to a particular culture. In other words culture is a common set norms formed ...view middle of the document...

R Leavis.

Folk and Mass are two other types of culture. Folk culture refers to a culture created in societies that are behind in industrialization. This culture takes transmitting information from one generation to another as vital. The principles of folk culture include personal honor, loyalty to family and clan; duty or service to the community and respect for Nature. In other words to place the welfare of one's community, one's folk, before one's own personal interests and happiness.

However as the society developed the influence of industrial activities pushed the folk culture practices such as composing songs and telling stories were slowly fading away. At the same time, grassroots fan communities emerged in response to mass media content. This mass Society was brought about by mass production and mass consumption. This culture was identified by left wing critics in the 30’s; it included Hollywood films, popular music and pulp fiction. Thus traditional thinking was replaced by scientific thinking and folk culture was replaced by mass culture. This culture is seemed to persuade by younger generations. However there were criticism on the mass society were made by the Frankfurt school leader Theorder W.Adorno along with Freud, Marx and Hegel in 1940’s. He stated that media had direct effect on the mass culture in terms of supporting dominating ideas of the media. Many other authors state that many norms of the society come from the entertainment industry, thus making mass society abusive. Subcultures are smaller groups within the society who form their own norms. Frederic M. Thrasher (1927- 46) studied gangs in a systematic way, analyzing gang activity and behavior. He defined gangs by the process they go through to form a group interlinked through conflict thus resulting in collective behavior.

In sociology the interrelationship between self, identity and socialization can be explained starting from the birth of a child, at this stage the child cannot think for him/her self; thus they are dependent on someone. Once they are at a stage where they can understand what other individuals say to them or teach them, the role of socialization occurs. Each child learns from experience from within the society. Socialization is a complex process by which individual’s interaction and experience with others by which an individual learns the norms and culture of a society. This enables individuals or children to learn about themselves, their identity and personality. Through years children develop to adults their own norms, values and principals will develop, in other words start creating their own identity, this influenced by the family, school, peers, community, religion and media. Each of these agencies impact the upbringing and identity as well as social groups of each individual. In other words one could say internalization (development of a human) is influenced by the agencies of socialization. This is vital for there to be a social...

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