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Encyclopedia > Culture theory

Culture theory is the branch of anthropology and other related social science disciplines (e.g., sociology) that seeks to define the heuristic concept of culture in operational and/or scientific terms. In the 19th century, "culture" was used by some to refer to a wide array of human activities, and by others as a synonym for "civilization". In the 20th century, anthropologists began theorizing about culture as an object of scientific analysis. Some used it to distinguish human adaptive strategies from the largely instinctive adaptive strategies of animals, including the adaptive strategies of other primates and non-human hominids, whereas others used it to refer to symbolic representations and expressions of human experience, with no direct adaptive value. Both groups understood culture as being definitive of human nature. The Cultural Theory of risk, often referred to simply as Cultural Theory (with capital letters), is a theory developed in anthropology and political science to explain risk perception. ... This article is about the social science. ... The social sciences are a group of academic disciplines that study human aspects of the world. ... Sociology (from Latin: socius, companion; and the suffix -ology, the study of, from Greek λόγος, lógos, knowledge [1]) is the scientific or systematic study of society, including patterns of social relationships, social interaction, and culture[2]. Areas studied in sociology can range from the analysis of brief contacts between anonymous... For other uses, see Heuristic (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Culture (disambiguation). ... An operational definition is a description of something — such as a variable, term or object — in terms of the specific process or set of validation tests used to determine its presence and quantity. ... Scientific method is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. ... For other uses, see Culture (disambiguation). ... This article is about modern humans. ... Central New York City. ... This article is about the social science. ... The eye is an adaptation. ... For other uses, see Instinct (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Animal (disambiguation). ... Families 15, See classification A primate is any member of the biological order Primates, the group that contains all the species commonly related to the lemurs, monkeys, and apes, with the latter category including humans. ... Genera The hominids are the members of the biological family Hominidae (the great apes), which includes humans, chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans. ... It is generally agreed that people know and understand the world and reality through the act of naming it; thus, through language and representations (Oxford English Dictionary, cited in Vukcevich 2002). ... For other uses, see Human nature (disambiguation). ...


According to many theories that have gained wide acceptance among anthropologists, culture exhibits the way that humans interpret their biology and their environment. According to this point of view, culture becomes such an integral part of human existence that it is the human environment, and most cultural change can be attributed to human adaptation to historical events. Moreover, given that culture is seen as the primary adaptive mechanism of humans and takes place much faster than human biological evolution, most cultural change can be viewed as culture adapting to itself. The word theory has a number of distinct meanings in different fields of knowledge, depending on their methodologies and the context of discussion. ... For the song by Girls Aloud see Biology (song) Biology studies the variety of life (clockwise from top-left) E. coli, tree fern, gazelle, Goliath beetle Biology (from Greek: Βιολογία - βίος, bio, life; and λόγος, logos, speech lit. ... Existentialism is a philosophical movement that posits that individuals create the meaning and essence of their lives, as opposed to deities or authorities creating it for them. ... Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Change For other uses, see Change (disambiguation). ... HIStory – Past, Present and Future, Book I is a double album by American singer Michael Jackson released in June 1995 and remains Jacksons most conflicting and controversial release. ... For the history of humans on Earth, see History of the world. ...


Although most anthropologists try to define culture in such a way that it separates human beings from other animals, many human traits are similar to those of other animals, particularly the traits of other primates. For example, chimpanzees have big brains, but human brains are bigger. Similarly, bonobos exhibit complex sexual behaviour, but human beings exhibit much more complex sexual behaviours. As such, anthropologists often debate whether human behaviour is different from animal behaviour in degree rather than in kind; they must also find ways to distinguish cultural behaviour from sociological behaviouur and psychological behavior. Type species Simia troglodytes Blumenbach, 1775 distribution of Species Pan troglodytes Pan paniscus Chimpanzee, often shortened to chimp, is the common name for the two extant species of apes in the genus Pan. ... For other uses, see Brain (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Bonobo (disambiguation). ... Animal sexual behavior takes many different forms, even within the same species. ... This article is about human sexual perceptions. ... Human Behaviour is Icelandic singer Björks first solo single, taken from the album Debut. ... Ethology is the scientific study of animal behaviour (particularly of social animals such as primates and canids), and is a branch of zoology. ...


External links

  • Article Database of topics about the human culture.

See also


  Results from FactBites:
 
Culture theory (1589 words)
Culture theory is that branch of anthropology and other related social science disciplines (i.e., for example, sociology) that seeks to define the heuristic concept of culture in operational and/or scientific terms.
In the 19th century culture was used by some to refer to a wide array of human activities, and by others as a synonym for "civilization".
The British version of cultural studies was developed in the 1960s mainly under the influence of Richard Hoggart and Stuart Hall at the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies at the University of Birmingham.
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