What is Culture?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of culture is:

“the customary beliefs, social forms, and material traits of a racial, religious, or social group.”

In the field of anthropology, we define culture by these characteristics:

  • Culture is learned: It is taught to you by the people around you, and absorbed simply by living in society among other people of the same culture.
  • Culture is fluid: Contrary to popular belief, culture is not stagnant, but ever-changing. Culture can be influenced and changed by outside and inside forces.
  • Culture is everywhere: Culture is not just the “traditional” aspects of a group–it also includes the ways in which people live their lives every single day.
  • Culture is diverse and universal: There are millions of cultures that exist around the world at any given time.

The purpose of this blog is to facilitate discussion about culture, its diverse forms, the ways it impacts us as human beings and the ways we can appreciate it and understand it more effectively.