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Social Dimensions of Education

What is Culture?

Culture is defined as the set of learned behaviors, beliefs, attitudes, values, and ideals that are characteristics of a particular society or population (Ember, 1999).

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Culture is defined as the set of learned behaviors, beliefs, attitudes, values, and ideals that are characteristics of a particular society or population (Ember, 1999). 

Culture, as defined by Calhoun, et al. (1994) is the learned norms, values, knowledge, artifacts, language, and symbols that are constantly communicated among people who share a common way of life.

Allan Johnson (1996) said that culture is the sum total of symbols, ideas, forms of expressions, and material products associated with a collective way of life reflected in such things as beliefs, values, music, literature, art, dance, science, religious ritual and technology.

An eminent English scholar, E.B. Taylor, defines culture as that complex whole which. includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society (Panopio, 1992).

Leslie A. White refers to culture as an organization of phenomena that is dependent upon symbols, phenomena which include acts (patterns of behavior); objects (tools and things made by tools); ideas (beliefs, knowledge); and sentiments (attitudes, values). In this sense, culture means the entire way of life of people and everything learned ind shared by people in society (Hunt et al, 1998).

Hofstede (1997) states that culture consists of patterns, explicit and implicit, of and for behavior acquired and transmitted by symbols, constituting the distinctive achievement of human groups, including their embodiments in artifacts. It also refers to the cumulative deposit of knowledge, experience, beliefs, values, attitudes, meanings, hierarchies, religion, notions of time, roles, spatial relations, concepts of the universe, and materials objects and possessions acquired by a group of people in the course of generations through individual and group striving.

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