Culture Flow

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Culture Flow

Postby Carleas » Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:40 pm

Culture is transferred through interactions between cultural groups. As a result, cultural exchange is a function of the rate of interaction between groups. We can think of the rate of transfer as a sort of flow, mediated by the topology of interactions. This topology can be geographical topology (geographical features that impede movement will reduce interaction, and so reduce cultural flow), communications topology (a phone network that spans a continent increases cultural flow across the continent), and social topology (media bubbles may lead to divergent evolution of geographically proximate cultures). Say that a feature of the topology has "high impedance" if it slows the flow of culture, and low impedance if it allows for more rapid flow of culture.

Over time, the influences on the topology of interaction change. Early on, geography exerted a strong influence. Even today, populations with mountains between them will tend to have less cultural exchange than we might otherwise expect from for groups that are physically proximate as the bird flies. For a long time, oceans had a high impedance, but as ocean-navigating technology improved, oceans became low impedance, and lower in particular than certain feature of land terrain. Moreover, the impedance of oceans does not scale linearly with distance (the fixed costs of crossing a straight and crossing an ocean are similar).

Air travel further affected the topology of interaction. Large urban centers that became travel hubs had more interaction with each other, and physical proximity mattered less. Communication technology further reduced the significance of physical proximity, and culture often flows with lower impedance across the internet than it does between physically proximate populations.

The change in culture flow can lead to significant turbulence: changing topology through the introduction of the internet effectively opened the floodgates between population who had very little flow prior to that change. When very different cultures suddenly have very low impedance between them, the result is a steep cultural gradient, resulting in turbulence in the form of hatred, violence, political turmoil, bigotry, etc.

One final thing to note is the ascendance of social topology in mediating culture flow. The role of media bubbles, class divisions, assortative mating, and language have all increased significantly in shaping culture, as these tend to dictate who interacts with who and how culture is passed between groups. But social topology is much more fluid than previously dominant aspects of topology. It also has strong feedback effects, so that culture shapes social topology, which shapes culture flow, which shapes culture etc.
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Peter Kropotkin » Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:52 pm

I believe you have downplayed the role of technology in the
movement of culture....with each advance of technology...
the phone, the camera, the video recorder, the radio, the TV,
the internet, computers, cell phones.... at each step, the flow
of information increases....now it is possible that the speed
of the flow on information/culture, also acts like mountains or
other barriers and the speed of culture itself creates the negative
aspects of culture... the bigotry and the like....

the speed of culture overwhelms one and they turn to those negative
attributes you mentioned....

so it is not only the topology as you mentioned.......
but it is how and how fast the information/culture moves
that affects people.....

I however don't think of culture traveling as much from group to group
as from individual to group and group to individual.....I suspect
culture is more of an individual act of creation and not so much a group
act of creation....

Kropotkin
"Those who sacrifice liberty for security
wind up with neither."
"Ben Franklin"

The RNC has announced that's its changing the Republican emblem from
an elephant to an condom because it more clearly reflects the party's political
stance: a condom stands for inflation, halts production, destroys the next generation,
protects a bunch of pricks, and gives one a sense of security while screwing others.

Kropotkin
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Meno_ » Thu Feb 16, 2017 7:03 pm

Interesting, been thinking along similar lines recently just this morning.But in terms of a vastly reduced manner.

Borders are originally pre conceptual behavior types, which try to determine territoriity, and instinctive claims toward them.Social organization is established by an early assertion of kinship related goes.

The evolution of thought through consciousness is a mode and manifestations of spatio-temporal reification actualized from latent dynamic manifested fear towards patent observance, leading to the categorization of types of management of boundaries, infused into evolving spatial and temporal frames of reference.

As such,thought is a recurrent stake of which a stand is made for its perpetuation. Culture is this, but when the stands are understood as stemming from high stakes, the underlying foms of transmission are misunderstood , and a strictly patent
cultural flow is the result, shifted to the surface , and rationalizing away any submerged dynamic
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Carleas » Thu Feb 16, 2017 7:47 pm

Peter, I agree that technology and the speed of information flow matter, but I would consider those a part of the topology. In my parlance, increasing speed of information flow would be decreased impedance. Similarly, technology like the internet would decrease impedance between physically separated groups.

I also agree that the speed of information flow, and thus culture flow, is a significant factor. In particular, if the impedance across the entire space has decreased, that would have significant repercussions: the speed at which humans adapt is limited by the speed at which we can learn and how adaptable we can be, and it seems clear that there is a ceiling for cultural adaptation within a single generation. If impedance for cultural flow decreases while the ability of individuals to adapt remains fixed, that entails at least a generation of significant conflict between cultures.

Peter Kropotkin wrote:I however don't think of culture traveling as much from group to group as from individual to group and group to individual.....I suspect culture is more of an individual act of creation and not so much a group act of creation....

Yes, I am taking for granted a colloquial meaning of 'culture', which I probably shouldn't.

I think of culture as basically the set of underlying assumptions about how individuals and society work. That's part of why culture passes with interactions: expectations are based on experience, so experiencing a person from another culture will change what you expect from other people, and also what you feel is expected of you.

In that sense, culture is passed from individual to individual, and groups of frequently-interacting individuals define distinct cultures. We can think of society as a network, where individuals are the nodes and interactions are the connections between them. A distinct culture is a set of norms and expectations for an area of the network that is more densely interconnected, with weak or non-existent connections outside that area.
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Peter Kropotkin » Fri Feb 17, 2017 12:50 am

perhaps we should take culture and include other aspects....

for example, morality.....In my lifetime of 57 years, we have gone from
homosexuality being a sin and a crime to being accepted and legal....
we have gone from Jim crow laws (again in my lifetime) to the point where
as late as 1969? I believe, in certain states, a white person could not marry a
black person...... it was against the law...... yet, today we don't even give
it a second thought... is this culture or is this morality... both, neither.....
the problem really lies in being able to pin down this thing called "CULTURE".

it is so deeply entrenched that we don't even know what it means...
we cannot separate ourselves from our culture because we don't even
know where one begins and the other ends.......

culture does seem to me to be a series of assumptions that
people hold in common......what if.... what if a society becomes
in "trouble" when we cannot agree on our assumptions...
perhaps this act of "alienation" we have all heard about, is really
just us suddenly not being able to trust our assumptions or we find
our assumptions to be wrong... and millions find their assumptions to
be challenged and we have a society full of "alienated" people.......
I am old enough to remember the 60's and many of the old
assumptions were found to be false and this gave rise to the
counter-culture of that era.....

to be it in more concrete terms.... we Americans have
had a sense for many decades that the government is
a positive thing and useful for us to have......
and we now have a large group of people who believe
otherwise that the government is negative and danger to
our existence and that government must be driven
out of existence... this is where we are now with the GOP
at war with the very government and attempting to dismantle
the very structure of government we have relied upon for decades...
our very assumptions have been attacked and we no longer have
shared common assumptions and this has created, in part,
the vicious attacks and counter attacks between the left,
which still trusts the government, we still make this assumption
and the right, which hates and is actively trying to dismantle
government.... our shared assumptions no longer exist.....
we are alienated from each other.......

for a society or government or a culture to work, we must
have enough people to have those shared assumptions
to allow society/government/culture to work properly....

and we are a fractured society/culture because we no
longer have shared assumptions... the left and the right......

this is why we so often talk past each other, because we
are talking about different assumptions we have......

My apologies if my ramble has carried me a long way from
your original post but as idea's come to me, I simply write and
I don't worry about where my thoughts end up.....which is quite
often very far from where I started......hopefully some
of this makes sense in context of your idea's about culture....

Kropotkin
"Those who sacrifice liberty for security
wind up with neither."
"Ben Franklin"

The RNC has announced that's its changing the Republican emblem from
an elephant to an condom because it more clearly reflects the party's political
stance: a condom stands for inflation, halts production, destroys the next generation,
protects a bunch of pricks, and gives one a sense of security while screwing others.

Kropotkin
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby pilgrim-seeker_tom » Fri Feb 17, 2017 4:24 am

IMHO ... humanity is experiencing an unprecedented convergence of tsunami like forces:

1) population explosion

2) technology explosion ... particularly in the area of connectivity and communications

3) economics ... a global network creating global dependency ... a hiccup in one region causes indigestion in others.

4) disintegrating spiritual considerations.
"Do not be influenced by the importance of the writer, and whether his learning be great or small; but let the love of pure truth draw you to read. Do not inquire, “Who said this?” but pay attention to what is said”

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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Carleas » Fri Feb 17, 2017 4:16 pm

Peter, I would consider morality to be an aspect of culture, to the extent that it applies to specific questions. I want to avoid equivocating here: questions of morality like consequentialism vs. deontology aren't aspects of culture, but accepted moral stances like 'homosexuality is acceptable/unacceptable' are part of culture: they are part of the basic assumptions and expectations for how others will behave. As the assumptions erode, they also become a part of culture as a signaling mechanism: people identify with and express moral beliefs to signal membership in a cultural group.

I think of culture as an emergent property of a group, rather than something an individual has. An individual in isolation does not possess a culture, because culture operates in the interactions between individuals; without others, there's no expectation about how others will act or beliefs about how others will understand my actions.

I suspect you're right about alienation, and it's probably driven by the increased culture flow leading to more violations of social expectation, more feeling like one's own actions are misunderstood, less identity with those around us. Probably alienation is a feeling we've carried with us from our evolutionary history, where isolation was as good as death, so feeling disconnected from those around you was an incredibly vulnerable feeling. Depression is probably an evolved response, a way of being submissive to the group in order to regain full membership.

Tom, I agree that there is a kind of perfect storm of social change going on. And the forces you identify all lead to rapid cultural change: population by increasing physical proximity (lowering impedance), technology by connection people who had been physically separated (lowering impedance), economics by providing a new path for cultural transmission (lowering impedenace).

But, while I agree "disintegrating spiritual considerations" is a strong force in its own right, I think it's also an effect of rapid cultural change: as a person's 'tribe' starts to include people of different spiritual perspectives, it becomes more difficult to stay connected to a spiritual tradition. In my description from the OP, this would seem to be a part of the feedback loop of social topology: as interaction between cultures increases, each culture' institutions are weakened, which further weakens the connections within those cultures that were supported by those institutions, which increases interaction between culture and further weakens institutions. In the past, this wasn't as big a problem, because impedance-lowering events were one-offs, and when old institutions died they were replaced with new institutions that had time to solidify and provide a cultural anchor. Now, the social topology is so turbulent that it's not clear that a permanent cultural institution will be able to develop sufficiently to stabilize a culture around it.
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby pilgrim-seeker_tom » Sat Feb 18, 2017 1:30 am

Tom, I agree that there is a kind of perfect storm of social change going on. And the forces you identify all lead to rapid cultural change: population by increasing physical proximity (lowering impedance), technology by connection people who had been physically separated (lowering impedance), economics by providing a new path for cultural transmission (lowering impedenace).

But, while I agree "disintegrating spiritual considerations" is a strong force in its own right, I think it's also an effect of rapid cultural change: as a person's 'tribe' starts to include people of different spiritual perspectives, it becomes more difficult to stay connected to a spiritual tradition. In my description from the OP, this would seem to be a part of the feedback loop of social topology: as interaction between cultures increases, each culture' institutions are weakened, which further weakens the connections within those cultures that were supported by those institutions, which increases interaction between culture and further weakens institutions. In the past, this wasn't as big a problem, because impedance-lowering events were one-offs, and when old institutions died they were replaced with new institutions that had time to solidify and provide a cultural anchor. Now, the social topology is so turbulent that it's not clear that a permanent cultural institution will be able to develop sufficiently to stabilize a culture around it.[/quote]

Carleas wrote:Tom, I agree that there is a kind of perfect storm of social change going on. And the forces you identify all lead to rapid cultural change: population by increasing physical proximity (lowering impedance), technology by connection people who had been physically separated (lowering impedance), economics by providing a new path for cultural transmission (lowering impedenace).

But, while I agree "disintegrating spiritual considerations" is a strong force in its own right, I think it's also an effect of rapid cultural change: as a person's 'tribe' starts to include people of different spiritual perspectives, it becomes more difficult to stay connected to a spiritual tradition. In my description from the OP, this would seem to be a part of the feedback loop of social topology: as interaction between cultures increases, each culture' institutions are weakened, which further weakens the connections within those cultures that were supported by those institutions, which increases interaction between culture and further weakens institutions. In the past, this wasn't as big a problem, because impedance-lowering events were one-offs, and when old institutions died they were replaced with new institutions that had time to solidify and provide a cultural anchor. Now, the social topology is so turbulent that it's not clear that a permanent cultural institution will be able to develop sufficiently to stabilize a culture around it.


Carleas ... in a word ... WOW!

You are a literary genius ... you have that rare gift of being able to translate abstract thought into readable/understandable ... down to earth ... human language.

For me ... your opening and closing statements warrant further thought exchange.

In your opening sentence you write "perfect storm" ... I have ingested your thought at face value, What humanity faces today is a "perfect" storm ... a "perfect" situation ... "perfect" circumstances.

In your closing sentence you write ... "Now, the social topology is so turbulent that it's not clear that a permanent cultural institution will be able to develop sufficiently to stabilize a culture around it."

You have literally "thrown down the gauntlet"!

As you said ... it is absolutely "not clear" ... yet ... equally ... not "impossible".

A raging fire can start with a tiny spark.
"Do not be influenced by the importance of the writer, and whether his learning be great or small; but let the love of pure truth draw you to read. Do not inquire, “Who said this?” but pay attention to what is said”

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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Peter Kropotkin » Mon Feb 20, 2017 5:21 pm

yesterday morning, I wrote a brilliant response, hit send and lost it...
so I am trying again today, but it won't be as brilliant as yesterday, but.....

I have spent the last few days thinking about Culture and what it is....
Carleas wrote about how culture moves and I am thinking about
what the culture is that is moving....I am more interested in what
the culture is rather then how it is transmitted...to give an example...
we have the play "hamlet" we have many different mediums through
which we can transmit the play.... you can read it, you can watch it being
preformed live, you can listen to it on tape or you can watch it on TV, taped...
you can hear a lecture about the play.....but the thing is no matter what
the medium is, the play is the thing....

so let us look at this from a different angle....in the past, what was considered
a "gentleman" was simple, a "gentleman, was educated... he was by virtue
of being educated, a cultured person. An educated person meant a person
who was cultured, someone who in theory, knew and understood the arts.....
being educated meant being educated in the culture of the time...
this is what interests me, not how the culture is transmitted but what is being
transmitted...so someone who understands what culture is, is educated.....
as this is slightly off topic but vaguely relevant.... why don't we have
people who understand culture today, but are "educated".. how is it possible
to be "educated" and still not know or understand culture?
it is from the focus of our educational system today....
and it comes from conservatives....for lack of a better name,
it is a cost/value idea.... you go to collage which cost a lot's of
money, so do you get a degree in philosophy or art which doesn't
make a whole lot of money or do you get a MBA which after
collage makes more money? the cost effect theory says, you
go for the MBA and not the degree that makes less money,
philosophy or art... it is more cost effect and will make you more money
to have a MBA instead of that art degree... collage is to make money
instead of being cultured....which is why we have a educated people
who have no understanding of culture... unlike the past, in which
if you were educated, you were cultured....

I will come back to this in a bit....

Kropotkin
"Those who sacrifice liberty for security
wind up with neither."
"Ben Franklin"

The RNC has announced that's its changing the Republican emblem from
an elephant to an condom because it more clearly reflects the party's political
stance: a condom stands for inflation, halts production, destroys the next generation,
protects a bunch of pricks, and gives one a sense of security while screwing others.

Kropotkin
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Peter Kropotkin » Mon Feb 20, 2017 6:23 pm

back... so this cost effective theory has gone to the lower level of schools,
by having schools eliminating such things as art and history in schools
because those studies won't earn someone much money in the "real" world...
the only subjects taught are subjects that can allow someone to make
money after school...so education is about training for making money after
school and not about "educating" someone...skills are about money making...
understanding art is no longer a part of being educated...it is no longer
about understanding our culture.....

now in another post in my understanding space and time thread, I wrote
about becoming who you are, Phyllo wrote about the "brutish" man
who has already become who he is...now comes the part about
culture and education... by becoming educated and thus cultured,
the "brutish" man is no longer "brutish"... he is educated and thus
cultured....education raises one from a lower level, "brutish" to a
higher level, cultured....going away from the lower, animal, instinctive
level to the higher level of being cultured... becoming more human.....
and thus further away from the animal, instinctive level...becoming
who we are requires education and becoming cultured.....becoming who
we are requires us to become more human and that means understanding
culture which is among other things, art......imagine those upon
we look down on, perhaps a co-worker or a friend or a relative...
chances are we look the we look down on these people is because
we feel that we are more educated, more cultured then they are...
compared to us, they are uncivilized, brutish, lacking in manners....
lacking in education.....now imagine those we look up to... chances are
they are more educated, more cultured then we are.....

so being cultured means not only understanding art but having read
books, so one who has for example read, War and Peace, is more
cultured then one who has not... (BTW, I have not read War and Peace)
and those who have read it, look down on me...and I have read most
of Dostoevsky and can look down on those who only read "people" magazine.....
and haven't read Dostoevsky.....we value those who are cultured, educated...
and we judge those who aren't...

and being cultured means going to museums and plays and
art exhibits..... knowing and understanding the common
assumptions that underlie our civilization......

our culture was, in part, exists with the knowledge of cultured
events such as "Hamlet and "War and Peace".....
you can understand who we are better if you know such things as
"Hamlet" and "War and Peace" as they are part of our common cultural
heritage.....

and this will be our next topic....

Kropotkin
"Those who sacrifice liberty for security
wind up with neither."
"Ben Franklin"

The RNC has announced that's its changing the Republican emblem from
an elephant to an condom because it more clearly reflects the party's political
stance: a condom stands for inflation, halts production, destroys the next generation,
protects a bunch of pricks, and gives one a sense of security while screwing others.

Kropotkin
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Peter Kropotkin » Mon Feb 20, 2017 6:54 pm

our common cultural heritage.....this is what is being
transmitted when you talk about culture flow.....
everyone has seen a picture of the Mona Lisa.. it is
part of our common heritage.... we might not know who
painted it, Da Vinci, but we all know the picture.....
this picture is part of our underlying basis for common cultural
heritage..... what if you are uneducated, just read people magazine....
and you don't know the Mona Lisa, you have never seen it, somehow,
then you are isolated from the common cultural heritage...
you are uneducated in a real sense of the word.....
this common currency of ours, the common cultural heritage,
is a sign of community and our belonging in the community.....
if you know along with the other members of the community, who
the Mona Lisa is, you have a commonality with your community......
but what if, because a lack of education, you don't know such things
that we hold in common as a cultural heritage.... if enough people
don't know those common cultural heritage, what happens?
the community fractures and we see this today.....we have, in part,
because of the elimination of cultural in schools, we have lost some
of our connection, some of our common cultural heritage... we have
fracture in part because we don't have any common ground such as
knowledge of the Mona Lisa.... this is important in the sense of community....
community is shared values and part of those shared values is our common
cultural heritage..... without that common cultural heritage we lost part
of the idea of community, which we have if you look......this cost effective
idea of education has the side benefit of reducing the idea of community..
a benefit for those 1% who want to retain their status and wealth
by fracturing the community and preventing us from finding common ground
and because if we had common ground we could begin the process of eliminating
the status and wealth of the 1%.... we cannot be unified if we don't have any
common ground....this is a end result of the attacks on education.. reducing
our common ground thus limiting our efforts to end the oligarchy in the U.S...
and returning the power to the people, democracy.....

in a age like our, being educated is an act of treason against
the status quo.... being educated is the action of rebellion
against the status quo.... to fight the modern state means
to be educated and thus cultured.....increasing our common ground
of knowledge is an act of revolution.......finding our common
cultural heritage is an act of revolution..... the key to reclaiming
our democracy begins with reclaiming our common cultural heritage

Kropotkin
"Those who sacrifice liberty for security
wind up with neither."
"Ben Franklin"

The RNC has announced that's its changing the Republican emblem from
an elephant to an condom because it more clearly reflects the party's political
stance: a condom stands for inflation, halts production, destroys the next generation,
protects a bunch of pricks, and gives one a sense of security while screwing others.

Kropotkin
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby pilgrim-seeker_tom » Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:29 am

Yet another literary genius in the ILP community!! ... translating abstract language into readable/understandable human language.

I've read both some Dostoevsky and some Tolstoy ... including War and Peace(3 times) ... yet I haven't read Nietzsche ... what does that make me? :-)

One thing ... makes me disagree with your "us" and "them" position vis a vis the 1%.

The 1% as many people label them ... like all other influential communities throughout history ... helped bring us to where we are today ... and perhaps their contribution has not been such a 'rosy' journey as so many people believe.

For me the question that should precede any further discussion is ... "Is humanity in an auspicious place today?"

Again ... for me ... meaningful dialogue is only for those people who respond with a loud ...YES!!
"Do not be influenced by the importance of the writer, and whether his learning be great or small; but let the love of pure truth draw you to read. Do not inquire, “Who said this?” but pay attention to what is said”

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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Carleas » Tue Feb 28, 2017 11:18 pm

Peter, I think there is some equivocation at work on the concept of 'culture' in this thread. It seems that you are referring to what I would call 'high culture', those works of art that carry a certain social cache. Those are an aspect of what I mean by 'culture', but they are neither necessary nor sufficient: a group of people who have never seen a work of renaissance art, but who have all seen every episode of Bevis and Butthead, are members of a common culture, they share a culture.

When I talk about culture flow, I don't have in mind any particular set of works, but a set of social and behavioral norms. Though I think there are indeed high and low cultures, and healthy and unhealthy cultures, and self-sustaining and self-defeating cultures, they are all cultures while they are extant. I'll call this 'de-facto culture' to make the distinction.

One thing that's happening to sow discord in the developed world is that the relative decline in the influence of physical proximity on the flow of de facto culture means that people we interact with directly ('IRL' as the kids say) are increasingly likely to be a part of a different de facto culture. As you correctly note, de facto culture depends on the media we consume: if we all read Mill, we will have a very different de facto culture than if we all read People Magazine. But now, the media we consume is so vast, with niches so completely foreign to each other (compare anime with The Kardashians, for example), that the culture within a single apartment block is more diverse than were entire towns in previous generations. That makes communication difficult, it makes for a lot of inefficiency. And it's happening quickly, so people aren't adapting very well, and so it's creating a lot of friction, turbulence, as people repeatedly see norms violations from their neighbors.
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Re: Culture Flow

Postby Peter Kropotkin » Wed Mar 01, 2017 8:28 pm

Carleas wrote:Peter, I think there is some equivocation at work on the concept of 'culture' in this thread. It seems that you are referring to what I would call 'high culture', those works of art that carry a certain social cache. Those are an aspect of what I mean by 'culture', but they are neither necessary nor sufficient: a group of people who have never seen a work of renaissance art, but who have all seen every episode of Bevis and Butthead, are members of a common culture, they share a culture.

When I talk about culture flow, I don't have in mind any particular set of works, but a set of social and behavioral norms. Though I think there are indeed high and low cultures, and healthy and unhealthy cultures, and self-sustaining and self-defeating cultures, they are all cultures while they are extant. I'll call this 'de-facto culture' to make the distinction.

One thing that's happening to sow discord in the developed world is that the relative decline in the influence of physical proximity on the flow of de facto culture means that people we interact with directly ('IRL' as the kids say) are increasingly likely to be a part of a different de facto culture. As you correctly note, de facto culture depends on the media we consume: if we all read Mill, we will have a very different de facto culture than if we all read People Magazine. But now, the media we consume is so vast, with niches so completely foreign to each other (compare anime with The Kardashians, for example), that the culture within a single apartment block is more diverse than were entire towns in previous generations. That makes communication difficult, it makes for a lot of inefficiency. And it's happening quickly, so people aren't adapting very well, and so it's creating a lot of friction, turbulence, as people repeatedly see norms violations from their neighbors.


K: to a great extent I agree with you.... this issue of "high" culture vs "low culture
is one that has been discussed since Plato....so I don't think we shall reach any fast
answers on that one.. but it is an Important one to discuss.......when the topic
of culture exchange occurs, we must first understand "which" culture we are talking
about.....I was in Europe last may for 3 weeks and a trip to Europe is on long trip
into and about culture... we went into museums and saw "culture", the Mona Lisa
for example.. (such a small picture, you don't realize how small the painting is, really
is until you see it in real life) anyway... we have other types of culture.... such
as the Kardassions and bevis and butthead as you rightly pointed out.... but
in that transmission of culture, the medium is the message.... you have rapid
movement of this "low" culture via mediums of TV, movies, radio, the internet.....
and in this rapid movement of culture can exist what has been referred to
as "culture shock"..... so let us think about a trip to the U.S from a foreign
perspective.... (I am a native American and have lived here all my life, so trying
to gain a foreign perspective on the U.S, is not easy, but here goes)
what would a foreigner see in regards to culture in the U.S....
One thing would be the pervasive nature of TV... TV sets are everywhere...
you can find TV sets in men's bathrooms in bars and restaurants in the U.S....
THE BATHROOM.....really......unlike European cities which by their very
architecture be back in a moment
"Those who sacrifice liberty for security
wind up with neither."
"Ben Franklin"

The RNC has announced that's its changing the Republican emblem from
an elephant to an condom because it more clearly reflects the party's political
stance: a condom stands for inflation, halts production, destroys the next generation,
protects a bunch of pricks, and gives one a sense of security while screwing others.

Kropotkin
Peter Kropotkin
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 5698
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 1:47 am
Location: blue state

Re: Culture Flow

Postby Peter Kropotkin » Wed Mar 01, 2017 8:59 pm

Peter Kropotkin wrote:
Carleas wrote:Peter, I think there is some equivocation at work on the concept of 'culture' in this thread. It seems that you are referring to what I would call 'high culture', those works of art that carry a certain social cache. Those are an aspect of what I mean by 'culture', but they are neither necessary nor sufficient: a group of people who have never seen a work of renaissance art, but who have all seen every episode of Bevis and Butthead, are members of a common culture, they share a culture.

When I talk about culture flow, I don't have in mind any particular set of works, but a set of social and behavioral norms. Though I think there are indeed high and low cultures, and healthy and unhealthy cultures, and self-sustaining and self-defeating cultures, they are all cultures while they are extant. I'll call this 'de-facto culture' to make the distinction.

One thing that's happening to sow discord in the developed world is that the relative decline in the influence of physical proximity on the flow of de facto culture means that people we interact with directly ('IRL' as the kids say) are increasingly likely to be a part of a different de facto culture. As you correctly note, de facto culture depends on the media we consume: if we all read Mill, we will have a very different de facto culture than if we all read People Magazine. But now, the media we consume is so vast, with niches so completely foreign to each other (compare anime with The Kardashians, for example), that the culture within a single apartment block is more diverse than were entire towns in previous generations. That makes communication difficult, it makes for a lot of inefficiency. And it's happening quickly, so people aren't adapting very well, and so it's creating a lot of friction, turbulence, as people repeatedly see norms violations from their neighbors.


K: to a great extent I agree with you.... this issue of "high" culture vs "low culture
is one that has been discussed since Plato....so I don't think we shall reach any fast
answers on that one.. but it is an Important one to discuss.......when the topic
of culture exchange occurs, we must first understand "which" culture we are talking
about.....I was in Europe last may for 3 weeks and a trip to Europe is on long trip
into and about culture... we went into museums and saw "culture", the Mona Lisa
for example.. (such a small picture, you don't realize how small the painting is, really
is until you see it in real life) anyway... we have other types of culture.... such
as the Kardassions and bevis and butthead as you rightly pointed out.... but
in that transmission of culture, the medium is the message.... you have rapid
movement of this "low" culture via mediums of TV, movies, radio, the internet.....
and in this rapid movement of culture can exist what has been referred to
as "culture shock"..... so let us think about a trip to the U.S from a foreign
perspective.... (I am a native American and have lived here all my life, so trying
to gain a foreign perspective on the U.S, is not easy, but here goes)
what would a foreigner see in regards to culture in the U.S....
One thing would be the pervasive nature of TV... TV sets are everywhere...
you can find TV sets in men's bathrooms in bars and restaurants in the U.S....
THE BATHROOM.....really......unlike European cities which by their very
architecture (be back in a moment) is culture, the U.S doesn't have that....
I have been all over the U.S in various cities and the city that feels like the most
culture is San Francisco... followed by Chicago....these two cities feel most
like Europe (and to be honest, I have no idea why Chicago feels like it, but it does)
so what else presents it self as culture in the U.S?
Certainly not the past part of the city as in most cities try to hide or
minimize the past unless they are pushing the past for tourism purposes....
and yet, you cannot escape the past in European cities... it defines those
cities..... Florence which by European standards is a relatively recent city,
it wasn't much until the 12th or 13th century......centuries before the new world
was even discovered.....is the US defined by its cities or its culture or its philosophy
or its history? no, in fact, I would suggest the defining aspect of culture in the U.S
is ITS LACK OF CULTURE......there is no there, there.....the movies which Hollywood
puts out has become known by its totally lack of original thinking and original
storylines.......... thus we get retreads like superhero movies on end......
and movies like LA LA land which is nice movie but it doesn't even compare in
any way, shape or form to such classic musicals like "Singing in the rain" or
even modern classics like "All that Jazz" ( love that movie) or even the
"Muppet Movie"....there is no culture in the movies... just attempts to make
money, the fastest, easiest way possible.......the US is the king of low culture...
we put out the lowest common denominator culture....we have no philosophy to
speak of, we have no literature to speak of.... we have a throw away, disposable
culture...... and that culture is being disseminated at a rapid and quicking pace...
which is nothing more then garbage in, garbage out at a rapid pace.....
so the question for me becomes.... where does the culture in the U.S exists?

not so much how what little culture we have and that little bit is low culture,
but if you have to go looking for the culture in a culture... it may not have one....

Kropotkin
"Those who sacrifice liberty for security
wind up with neither."
"Ben Franklin"

The RNC has announced that's its changing the Republican emblem from
an elephant to an condom because it more clearly reflects the party's political
stance: a condom stands for inflation, halts production, destroys the next generation,
protects a bunch of pricks, and gives one a sense of security while screwing others.

Kropotkin
Peter Kropotkin
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 5698
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 1:47 am
Location: blue state


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