Cultural Geography

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					  Cultural Geography
Fundamentals of the Human Mosaic
          Terry Jordan,
            Chapter 2
 (Move to next slide before class)
 Homework 1 Questions?

(We have a few minutes before class.)
             (next slide)
    Paper 1 Prompt, Indigenous Culture: (REVISIT)
1. Identify and use web sites developed by this culture, not made by
   another organization.
2. How do indigenous groups describe their relationship with the land?
3. How did they use the environment to thrive in the past?
4. What do they say about their homeland and territorial claims?
5. What are their ideas on biodiversity conservation and/or bio-
   prospecting?
6. Compare the answers to the last 4 questions with your previous
   beliefs and assumptions about indigenous groups.
7. What roles do maps play on the web sites?
8. What other cultures have competing land claims?
9. What major issues does the site highlight, and how do these issues
   relate to globalization?
10. You must have a good introduction, a good conclusion, and good
   grammar.
    Paper 1 Prompt, Indigenous Culture: (relevance)
Focus: Chapter 2, Traditional culture (not your cultural norms)
    (Try to think inside the box… their box. Then, look at your cognitive box)
•   Identify and use web sites developed by this culture, not made by another
    organization.
•   Relationship with the land: Cultural Ecology  Cultural Landscape
•   Use the environment: Cultural Ecology  Cultural Landscape
•   Homeland and territorial claims: Vernacular Region, Cultural Conflict
    (later)
•   Biodiversity conservation and/or bio-prospecting: Cultural Ecology
•   Your previous beliefs and assumptions: Cultural Perception
•   Map roles: Spatial cultural tools, Globalization, Cultural Values,
    Cultural Interaction
•   Competing land claims: Cultural Interaction, Cultural Conflict (later)
•   Major issues and globalization: Cultural Interaction, Cultural Values and
    Globalization

Just as individuals, cultures also have perceptions that are filtered by their
    cultural norms, beliefs, and information structures. Seeing the world (as mush
    as possible) through the eyes of other peoples allows us to expand our ability
    to appreciate, perceive, and understand the world in new ways. (This is
    crucial to several class student learning objectives.)
Cultural Geography
Fundamentals of the Human
         Mosaic
      Terry Jordan,
       Chapter 2
 Many Cultures: Material, Nonmaterial, Folk, Popular
     Definitions build upon one another. Here is one example.
•Culture: beliefs, activities and things representative of groups
    – Old definition, needed for…
• Subculture: Groups with cultures differing from the dominant culture.
    – Subcultures differ on average from the larger norm. (p. 27, substituted culture)
    – The book focuses on dominant culture. Possible internal conflict & tension.
• Material Culture: All physical tangible objects made and used by members of
a cultural group.
    – All physical things representative of a group.
    – See examples below the definition on p. 28.
• Nonmaterial culture: All beliefs and activities representative of a group.
    – Book definition is longer and has very good examples on p. 28.
                     Folk Culture
Traditional: rural, the opposite of ‘popular’
Folk culture (traditional culture): Small, cohesive, stable,
isolated, nearly self-sufficient groups that are
homogeneous in custom and race; characterized by a
strong family or clan structure, order maintained through
sanctions based on the religion or family, little division of
labor other than that between the sexes, frequent strong
interpersonal relationships, and material cultures
consisting mainly of handmade goods.

(book definitions, long but full of meaning)
(shorter definitions assume you can extrapolate.)
                          Folk Culture
Folk culture (traditional culture): Cultures found in
small, isolated, homogeneous groups.
Small: If larger, then more interaction, trade, popular
culture develops within the larger interacting society.
   –Isolation: If they are isolated, they are often rural,
      •We find only a few urban folk cultures, with strong cultural barriers
   – (Some secondary characteristics, independence,
   handmade goods, are outcomes of this shorter definition.)
   – (Other characteristics, like family and religious rules and
   sanctions, and gender-based roles, should be apparent from
   movies, history classes, etc.)
                          Popular Culture
• Widespread heterogeneous societies of the core.
• High population density diversity, communication, interaction
   – Contributes to high innovation, and to increased change.
   – The only constant is change? No, it is increasing! (Why?)
• Division of labor: (professions)
   – specialization contributes to innovation (Why? Be clear.)
• Secular control
   – political institutions, rule of law
•Weak interpersonal ties
   – less direct dependency, more group behavior, more indirect dependency
•Cash economy
   – makes the consumer society possible. (Why?)
•Machine made goods
   – makes high consumption possible
• Global transportation networks
   – Goods, services, and populations can ‘go global’.
 Folk and Popular Culture Regions
• Remnant patterns of folk cultures
  – Artifacts
  – Foods
• Strong popular cultural change in the core
  – Claim of placelessness
      Material Culture Folk Regions
• What folk artifacts remain? What do you see?
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               Folk Food Regions
• What folk foods dominate where?
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• What folk foods have become popular, and globalized?
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       Is Popular Culture Placeless?
Pro:
•
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Con:
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        Is Popular Culture Placeless?
• Cultural diffusion spreads popular culture in the
core.
   – Less in the periphery
• Globalization of communication services
   – Produces faster diffusion
   – Core changes faster than the periphery
      • Cores become more similar faster
      • Faster waves of change,but
      • delays in more isolated regions.
      • some attributes never really catch on in peripheral regions.
•However, subcultures regularly form
   – some spatial, some a-spatial
   –Examples:
                 Popular Music
• Folk Origins
   – Who wrote the songs?
   – Who played them?
• Synthesis, stimulus diffusion, innovation
   – Who plays your music now?
   – Who are your favorite composers and bands?
        Is Popular Culture Placeless?
• Cultural diffusion spreads popular culture in the core.
   – Less in the periphery
• Globalization of communication services…
   – Produces faster diffusion
   – The core changes faster than the periphery
      • Cores often have more and better communication service modes
      •Cores become more similar faster
      • Cores experience faster waves of change,
      • There are delays in more isolated regions.
      • Some attributes never really catch on in peripheral regions.
Folk Culture: how/where do you find it, and why?
 • Cultural cues:
    –
    –
    –
 • Physical cues:
    –
    –
    –
    –
Folk Cultural Regions

                        Definition:
              Folk cultures, one perspective:




•   http://www.valpo.edu/geomet/geo/courses/geo200/culture_regions.html
Popular Cultural Regions




                    Definition:
Folk and Popular Culture Diffusion
• Folk culture diffusion (examples)
   –
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• Folk culture becoming popular and diffusing
   –
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• Popular culture diffusion
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  Diffusion of Folk Culture: Rodeos
This is a transition of a folk cultural attribute to a
popular culture attribute (both activity and artifacts)
This started in West, diffused as far as ranching
was important.
Diffusion of Folk Culture: Agricultural Fairs
  •This is a transition of a folk cultural attribute to a
        popular culture attribute
     – (both activity and artifacts)
  •This started in East, diffused as far as farming was
        important.
  •When it becomes less important, it can be lost.
  •     San Jose State Fair
     Diffusion of Popular Culture
• Expansion diffusion
  – Hierarchical
  – Contagious
  – Stimulus
  –Combination
  – example: See something crazy.
     • Modify it (stimulus)
     • Share with friends, who share with friends (hierarchical)
     • Post it on u-tube, and it goes viral (contagious)
                          Advertising
•Expands popular culture
•Usually commercial
•Attainable by everyone with the technology and
access to the media…
•Buy ads in high population regions (core)
•Eventually, go to the periphery
  –If you think you will make money.
  –Heirarchical
     •Uneven access to popular cultural attributes
     •Folk culture impacted later in time
         –Folk culture affected by the most successful popular culture attributes
                  Communication Barriers
•Cultural
   – Can’t make money, don’t use, sell, or install
      •Unless the nation requires it (e.g. telephone)
      • “That will never work, nobody would buy it anyway.”
   – Taboos
      • Religious or other cultural sanction (traditional)
      • State sanction (popular norms, or sanction of traditional values)
   – Preference
      • If the communicators choose not to, attributes don’t diffuse.
            –Record companies and radio stations choose not to try some music.
            –Examples: punk rock, ska, reggae, etc. “That sounds awful!”

•Physical
   – Mountains, Water bodies, Swamps, Deserts, etc.
      • greatly reduced in popular culture areas. Good transportation, comm.
Diffusion of the Rodeo and Agricultural Fair
•Both diffused contagiously.
•Both commercialized in places with sufficient people.
•Both diffused until they reached physical constraints.
  – These influence cultural activities.
      • Too dry? No irrigation? Don’t farm, ranch.
      • Wetter? Grow grains and make more money.
Blowguns: Diffusion or Independent Invention?
•If no communication between regions when invented
   – You may theorize independent invention.
• If communication possible at the time of introduction,
   – You can’t tell that easily.
   – Then, you have to do some detective work.
      • (discussion in textbook)
  The Ecology of Folk and Popular Culture
• Folk culture is often more in-tune with the environment.
   – If there are environmental mistakes:
       • Minor: Suffer
       • Major die?
       • Chronic: Culture may eventually die out.
   – Environmental impact:
       • Short term: often minor
       • Long term: can be major
  The Ecology of Folk and Popular Culture
• Popular culture is less in-tune with the environment.
   – Environmental mistakes
      • Minor: Don’t notice
      • Major: Might notice
      • Chronic: Culture will eventually suffer.
   – Environmental impact:
      • Short term: sometimes major
          – Long term: can be critical
          – Cumulative effect of stronger changes over time
      Folk Medicine and Ecology
• Long time trial and error remedy research
  – Many work well
  – Many are used in medicines today.
     •Ex: Willow bark  aspirin
Nature in Popular Culture: Environmental Perception
    • Most of the nature we see is heavily modified.
    • Most of nature is far away.
      – From us
      – From our minds
    • We are often out of touch with nature.
    • We often see nature only in vacations,
      – or as we pass through or over it.
    • Some groups focus on outdoor experience
    • Others focus on environmental preservation
    • Understanding and appreciation are lacking,
      – but impacts are often high, even in recreation
         •Autos, SUVs, ATVs, bikes, hiking, equestrian activity, etc.
     Diffusion of traditional cultures:
• Migrate to places where your knowledge works.
  – Go to regions that are physically similar.
     • Appalachian people migrated to the Ozarks.
     • Then others migrated to SW Washington
Cultural Interaction in Folk and Popular Cultures
 Folk cultures are strongly impacted by popular culture.
 Popular cultures adopt & adapt some folk attributes,
       if they become popular.
 Popular culture is strongly linked to other pop cultures.
       via communication travel, and shipping
 (Often, if we think it is cool, we’ll do it.)
           Country and Western Music
• English, Scots, and Irish moved to southern Appalachia
• Took their musical preferences and songs with them.
• Retained songs for generations.
• Some became popular. Changes
   – Proliferation of more popular country music.
• Blended with Western ballads in cores
   – Nashville, &
• Shift in instruments, more amplification
• Shift in songs to focus on urban (core) culture themes.
           Difference to Convergence:
• Convergence Hypothesis: Popular culture converges.
  – Transportation and communication effect
  – Cultures become more similar.
  – This produces more placelessness
  – This is possibly rrue if…
     • No celebration of cultural difference
     • No environmental variety, which drives cultural adaptation
     • No local consumption cultures
             Difference Revitalized:
• Local consumption cultures
   – Produce to satisfy local preferences,
   – Food, clothing, music, construction
   – Examples: (yours)
• Consumer nationalism
   – Ex: Buy American
   – (or buy from whatever country you associate with.
   – Seen in US, Japan, China, India…
   – Part of nationalist politics
       • Individual/organic growth and/or
       • state sponsored
         –Examples: (see book, p. 43)
                Place Images
•    Perceptions of places based on stories
    – Folk tales, now popular media
•    Often highly skewed perspectives:
    – Ex: Hawaii as a paradise on earth.
    – Local: California beach culture
       • Compare reality with movies
       • (Surf City, Beach Blanket Bingo, etc.)
  Cultural Landscapes: Folk Architecture
• Responses to past physical and social conditions
   – adapted to site, situation, and materials
   – Materials
      • Lots of trees  log houses
      • Only sod  sod houses
   –Site: climate
      • Hot dry climate: Adobe
      • Hot: Dog-trot house (text) protected porch
      • Windy: Cape Cod style
      • Cold: more square, central chimney
      •Humid: Large wrap-around veranda ( shade & breezes)
   – Situation: defense
      • SW Indians: Pueblos, Spanish: Haciendas
   – Folk architecture often makes sense in local context.
      • Responses are often still useful today.
         –(If it works, consider it.)
          North America, Africa, Asia
• Similar conditions may yield similar responses:
  – Hogans, permanent yurts, octagonal barns
  – Different variant: circular adobe
• Remember: possibilism
  – Also: religion, other cultural norms, techniques, &
• Similar Modern response: geodesic dome
  – ultra-modern in its day
  – multiple stimuli lead to new approaches to old problems.
      Landscapes of Popular Culture
Landscapes of consumption
  –We consume lots of land for housing.
  –Then we consume lots of resources, modifying land.
  –Then we consume lots of land for places to sell
  consumables.
  –Then we consume stuff.
  –Then we consume land for storage for stuff.
        Landscapes of Popular Culture
Major examples:
Suburbs
Malls
Change over time: San Jose
• Tribes living through subsistence methods
• Spanish used cattle for hides and tallow  Spain
• Anglos took land, ranched then farmed for profit.
• Canned for shipping, Beginning of manufacturing.
• Silicon Valley: High tech, lots of growth. “Suburbification”
• The Alameda, Camino Real: Road  houses  businesses
Leisure Landscapes, amenity landscapes
Prized for their
   –   ski resorts, (Mammoth)
   –   mixed playspaces (Santa Cruz Boardwalk)
   –   golf courses (San Jose)
   –   amusement parks (Great America)
   –   amenities in National Parks (Yosemite Lodge)
   –   developed parks (state and county parks)
The most expensive are often a subset of elitist
landscapes
                 Elitist Landscapes
• Owned and used by upper classes
   – physical, legal, and/or economic barriers
   – often gated and guarded, if not, segregated by cost of use
• California: (Make it local, make it real to you.)
   – Malibu (and to a lesser extent, the beach cities of LA)
   – Lake Tahoe
   – Montecito
   – The Riviera, in Santa Barbara
   – Pebble Beach, in Carmel CA

				
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posted:2/14/2012
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