Chapter 1 Culture PartⅠ. Basic Concepts 1. Definitions of Culture 1）Metaphors of Culture （附听力） a. Culture is like an iceberg. b. Culture is software of our mind and the grammar of our behavio
ur. c. Culture is the rules of the game everybody is playing in any particular society. 2）Defining Culture from the Intercultural Perspective “Culture is a system of shared beliefs, values, customs, behaviors and artifacts that are transmitted from generation to generation through learning.” — Bates and Plog 3）Conclusion: Culture is … A way of overcoming men?s vulnerability Acquired through socialization THUS, man is the producer of culture AND the product of culture 2. The Characteristics of Culture 1）Culture is Learned ? We learn our culture in many ways and from a variety of sources, either consciously or unconsciously. One way is by means of proverbs that offer in a vivid way an important set of instructions for members to follow. 2）Culture is Dynamic ? Cultures, once formed, are stable, but are at the same time changing with the development of human society. Although many aspects of culture are subject to change, the deep structure of culture resists major alterations. 3）Culture is Pervasive Culture penetrates into every aspect of our life and influences the way we think, talk and behave. It pervades all areas: arts and artifacts, beliefs, behaviors, ceremonies, concept of self, customs, ideas and thought patterns, ideals, knowledge, laws, language, manners, morals, myths and legends, religion, rituals, social institutions, tools, and values. Culture is the total sum of human society and its meanings. 4）Culture is Integrated ? The elements of culture are closely linked as if in a complex chain like system. You touch a culture in one place and everything else is affected. 5）Culture is Adaptive Culture is changing. History abounds with examples of how cultures have changed because of laws, natural disasters, wars, or other calamities. Eg. Women’s place in society. Part II. Cultural Identity 1. Cultural identity refers to one?s sense of belonging to a particular culture or ethnic group. People consciously identify themselves with a group that has a shared system of symbols and meanings as well as norms for conduct. ?
文化身份：认为自己归属于某一文化或民族群体的感觉。 2. The Characteristics of Cultural Identity Cultural identities are central, dynamic, multifaceted components of one?s self-concept. Part Ⅲ. Movie Appreciation and Analysis 1. Discussion questions concerning the Selected Scene (16:10—19:42): （课堂讨论题） 1) Why is Elle Woods considered diverse by Harvard Law School? And why is Elle Woods admitted by Harvard Law School? What can we learn from it about American culture? Reference: Elle woods is considered diverse by Harvard Law School because she?s a fashion major and her extracurricular activities are so different from what the other candidates do, who are usually history, politics, or philosophy majors. Elle woods is admitted by Harvard Law School mainly because they are looking for diverse type of students, which is determined by their education principles. From it we can learn that the education system developed in American culture encourages the development of individuality. From this movie clip we can also get to understand that culture shapes people?s speech and behaviors, which in turn influences the communication between people. 2) Discuss in groups the strengths and weaknesses of the American and Chinese education systems. Present your ideas to the whole class after your discussion. Reference: Education is a factor of culture. Different educational system reflects different culture. The education attitude of China is totally different from that of the US, rooted as it is in Chinese traditional culture. Chinese education tends to focus on teaching, e.g., pouring knowledge as much as possible on students with little care on how much or in what way they receive it. Right after they come into the world, Chinese children are taught to listen to their teachers and parents, to obey their elders, which certainly shapes their ideas and attitudes when they grow up. Compared with their American counterparts, Chinese students have very strong basic knowledge which can turn out to be a shortcoming sometimes. American students can be more innovative; good at creative thinking, while Chinese students usually stop before creating new things. In addition, it is too simple to say which is better: the American education system or the Chinese one. It depends. In the teaching process, Chinese students should be encouraged to be more innovative while American students should be urged to build a greater solid base. It is proper to combine the two together. In other words, for most Chinese students, the Chinese education system makes wise choices while for some who are gifted, the American style looks better. 2. Discussion questions concerning Scene Ⅰ(05:06—10:01): Why did Warner want to break up with Elle? Reference: Warner identifies himself to be one member of high-class group while Elle, vase. He loves her but refuses her for her loss of the same cultural identity with him. 3. Discussion questions concerning Scene Ⅱ(12:36—13:45): Warner is going to study in Harvard Law School, so what is the law school students? cultural identity in people?s eyes? Reference: The woman in “manicures and pedicures” says, “practically deformed” and Elle?s father says, “boring, ugly, serious”.
Part Ⅳ. Culture within Culture (附听力，请自学) 1. Subculture ? Subcultures exist within dominant cultures and are often based on economic or social class, ethnicity, race, or geographic region. 亚文化：指存在于主流文化中的文化，其划分通常基于经济地位、社会阶层、民族、种族或 地理区域。 ? Although the term subculture refers to students, medical, middle-class, and business groups to name a few, it is more frequently used to refer to racial and ethnic groups. ? e.g. dominant culture--white culture ? racial and ethnic subculture— ? African or black American ? Mexican-American ? Hispanic-American 2. Co-culture ? Today the tendency is to say ?co-culture? as the replacement of subculture to avoid prejudice. ? Co-culture: refers to groups or social communities exhibiting communication characteristics, perceptions, values, beliefs, and practices that are significantly different enough to distinguish them from the other groups, communities, and the dominant culture. （共文化：指具有独特的交际特征、感知特点、价值观、信仰和行为，区别于其他 群体、社团以及主流文化的群体或社团。 ）
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