Cultural materialism is an anthropological research method that prioritizes the study of material conditions to understand human nature. Material conditions include geography, food, climate and societal organization. The study of cultural materialism works with the idea that the best way to understand a culture is to observe how humans react to problems presented by their environment.Know More
The theoretical approach to cultural materialism studies socio-economic systems on three different levels. The first level is superstructure which consists of the mental and physical behaviors of people in the culture. Elements of the superstructure include literature, advertising, sports, science, art, rituals, hobbies, values, emotions and traditions. The structure includes the domestic and political economies. The domestic economy are the people in the civilization who interact on an intimate, day-to-day level. Members of the political economy interact with each other for the continuation of the society without emotional interaction.
Infrastructure involves the study of production and reproduction of the society. Reproduction involves studying the technology and methods that are utilized by a civilization to grow. Production studies the technology and methods that the civilization uses to cultivate crops, expand and develop resources such as energy and other types of basic subsistence production. Elements of the infrastructure are also studied for the ways in which the civilization limits production and reproduction.Learn more about Cultures & Traditions
Cultural syncretism is a concept that refers to the social processes by which the beliefs and practices of two unique cultures mix and create new cultural characteristics. These cultural beliefs and practices are exchanged through indirect and direct contact.Full Answer >
Cultural traditions are important because they transmit shared values, stories and goals from one generation to the next. Traditions encourage groups of people to create and share a collective identity, which in turn serves to shape individual identities.Full Answer >
Cultural isolation is the term for a country or region that does not care to interact with, understand or empathize with cultures outside its borders. Americans have been accused of cultural isolation, because some Americans have not studied or learned languages other than American English and seem content to know very little about other countries.Full Answer >
Cultural awareness is the ability to recognize the different beliefs, values and customs that someone has based on that person's origins, and it allows a person to build more successful personal and professional relationships in a diverse environment. A person's state, region or country of origin and local customs heavily influence cultural background.Full Answer >