Education and Culture:

Culture: meaning and concept

Horton and Hunt define “culture as everything which is socially shared and learned by the members of a society.” Culture is seen to be at the heart of any civilization, and without it, no civilization can thrive. Culture is a key term in anthropology and sociology, including a broad spectrum of applications acquired in human communities through socialization.

The definition of culture according to certain theorists

E.A. Hoebel defined, “Culture is the total of integrated learned behaviour patterns that are characteristics of the members of a society and which are therefore not the result of biological inheritance.”

The concept of “culture” comes from Cicero’s Tusculanae Disputationes, when he spoke about the growth of the soul, or “cultura animi,” utilizing an agricultural analogy for the growth of a philosophical soul, seen in teleological terms as the highest conceivable characteristic of human evolution.

Edward S. Casey (1986) describes:

 “The very word culture meant “place tilled “in Middle English, and the same word goes back to Latin colere, ‘to inhabit, care for, till, worship’ and cultus, ‘a cult, especially a religious one.’ To be cultural, to have a culture, is to inhabit a place sufficiently intensive to cultivate it—to be responsible for it, to respond to it, to attend to it caringly. ”

So, what is the meaning of culture?

The term “culture” is used in anthropological texts in a variety of ways, but in general literature, it refers to social behaviour, habits, attitudes, values, and intellectual supremacy. “Culture” is a phrase that refers to socially transmitted patterns of conduct. In everyday English, culture refers to a person’s or society’s habits, ideals, and social behaviour.

Sociologists defined it as:

  • Taylor defines culture as “that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, and law; custom; and any other capabilities and habits, acquired by man as a component of society.”
  • Ellwood says that “culture includes man’s entire material civilization, tools, weapons, clothing, shelter, machines, and even the system of industry.”
  •  According to Brown, “both material and non-material are dependent upon each other.”

“Culture” refers to an ethnic, religious, or socioeconomic institution’s traditional beliefs, social patterns, and material characteristics. A group’s culture includes its style of living, including what they respect, what they don’t appreciate, their habits of living, their works of art, what they do, and what they enjoy.

What are the types of culture?

There are two types of culture that can be broadly classified as:

  • Material culture
  • Non-material culture
  1. Material Culture: It encompasses all of the resources and tangible things that members of a given civilization utilize to identify their culture. 

For example, clothing, machinery, industry, factories and plants, manufacturing methods, items and products, and so on.

  1. Non-material culture: Concepts, ideas, faith, conventions, morality, language, and organizations are all examples of non-physical thoughts, attitudes, and values that individuals have concerning their culture.

For example, spirituality is a collection of beliefs and opinions about God, devotion, values, and morality.