- Term Papers, Book Reports, Research Papers and College Essays

So What Is Culture Really?

Essay by   •  February 16, 2011  •  Essay  •  605 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,009 Views

Essay Preview: So What Is Culture Really?

Report this essay
Page 1 of 3

The word culture is originally derived from the Latin term colere which means to cultivate. In general the word culture refers to "patterns of human activity and the symbolic structures that give such activity significance. Different definitions of "culture" reflect different theoretical bases for understanding, or criteria for evaluating, human activity." ( From an archaeological standpoint culture is defined as "a set of learned beliefs, values and behaviors the way of life shared by the members of a society. (Saa.Org) According to the Bureau of Public Secrets culture is "the reflection and prefiguration of the possibilities of organization of everyday life in a given historical moment; a complex of aesthetics, feelings and more through which a collectivity reacts on the life that is objectively determined by its economy." (

Popular Culture on the other hand is a slightly different concept. All of the following definitions are working, but definitely not concrete. Quickly fading trends in fashion, media coverage, movies, television; all of these impact popular culture. For instance, even though I do not read magazines and rarely have time to watch television, I can tell you who Brad Pitt dated before Angelina Jolie. Celebrity publicity is everywhere; whether we like it or not and I personally cannot get far enough away from it; yet I still know all about it...

In my personal opinion all of the above definitions only begin to describe the complexity which is American culture. Americans are very focused on culture and the world around them. There are many "sub-cultures" so to speak when thinking about culture. Some of these include fashion, art, music, architecture and many, many more. There are numerous things to take into account when talking about culture. One is the preservation of cultures past. The Center for Arts and Culture, on their website, conveyed the importance of preserving cultures from the past. They said, "at the heart of policies surrounding cultural heritage is a desire to preserve the past. Much of our cultural heritage, whether historic sites and buildings, collections of documents and books, archives of films and tape, or the skills and techniques of artisans, is at serious risk of being lost. Additionally, in many nations, globalization and technological change are perceived as threats to indigenous cultural achievements, leading some



Download as:   txt (3.7 Kb)   pdf (66.3 Kb)   docx (10.2 Kb)  
Continue for 2 more pages »
Only available on