Cultural adaptation

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Cultural adaptation

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IResearchNet Cultural Adaptation Cultural adaptation is a relatively new concept used to define the specific capacity of human beings and human societies to overcome changes of their natural and social environment by modifications to their culture.

The scale of culture changes depends on the extent of habitat changes and could vary from slight modifications in livelihood systems productive and procurement activity, mode of life, dwellings and settlements characteristics, exchange systems, clothing, and so on to principal transformation of the whole cultural system, including its social, ethnic, psychological, and ideological spheres.

History of the Idea The origin of Cultural adaptation concept of cultural adaptation and dissemination in contemporary anthropological literature is connected with the concept of cultural systems that, to a certain extent, fit the living conditions of their transmitters. The theoretical background of such an approach was created at the end of the 19th century in the American school of possibilism led by Franz Boas.

Possibilists regarded nature as a basis from which a great number of different versions of cultural communities could arise and develop. Bronislaw Malinowski, the founder of the functional approach to the interpretation of culture, understood culture as the specific answer to the challenges of nature.

Representatives of the New York school of culture studies, led by Ashley Montagu, regarded culture as an adaptive dimension of human society. Western European anthropologists in the s and s—in line with a reconsideration of the fundamental basis of theoretical reflection in the Cultural adaptation the next step.

Julian Steward put forward the idea that we should regard the natural environment as one of many factors of cultural change.

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About the same time, Leslie White proposed the view that human culture was an extrasomatic system of adaptation with three basic directions: With this theoretical background, a social direction was formed for investigations in the fields of cultural and social anthropology, cultural geography, ecology, psychology, and archaeology.

Its proponents see their primary task as the detection of the ecological function of culture. In the mids, we could distinguish two basic approaches within this framework: As a result, western European and American science now thinks of cultural systems and societies as autonomous but mutually interdependent units in which complicated mechanisms of adaptation to living conditions are elaborated and realized.

In this process, cultural systems act as determinants of social trajectory, and society is an indispensable component of this trajectory. Markaryan, regarded culture as a system of extrabiological mechanisms, through which the whole cycle of human activity is realized, primarily in all of its specific manifestations: There, the cultural system no longer acts as an adaptive unit but only as a universal mechanism of adaptation.

The concept of the ecological function of culture has been further developed in recent studies by Russian ethnologist Sergei Arutyunov.

Cultural Adaptation - Anthropology - iResearchNet

According to Arutyunov, we should regard culture as a set of different ways of institutionalizing human activity. The formation of a cultural system is a process of adaptation to specific niches, at first only natural ones, but niches that, in the course of time, become more social.

To be able to realize its adaptive function, culture should not only be capable of responding to a minimum of environmental requirements, but also have at its disposal the potential necessary for the achievement of its adaptive effect in new conditions.

Cultural adaptation

Main Notions and Theories of Cultural Adaptation In recent decades, the concept of cultural adaptation has become an integral part of many fields of behavioral studies, such as behavioral psychology, behavioral archaeology, behavioral anthropology, and others. Their principal subject of investigation is behavioral systems, which are regarded as a model of connections between human activity and components of natural environment.

In the second half of the s, such notions as behavioral selection, behavioral flow, behavioral repertoire and others contributed to the rise in popularity of a cultural adaptation concept. Series of theories, notions, and concepts have been elaborated on in connection with the concept of cultural adaptation, among them, adaptive level, adaptive policies and processes, and accommodation and assimilation.

Most are subjects of sharp discussions. At the present, the concept of optimum adaptive level appears to be the only one that does not invoke substantial opposition. The idea of optimum adaptive level is that the human group always tries to minimize the changes necessary for achieving an adaptive effect.

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We can trace the roots of this idea to physics in the 18th century.Marriage is a cultural adaptation that many cultures have adopted in order to provide a more orderly system for the care and successful raising of children. And there are different cultures with different norms for this, such as polygamous and communal systems found in some parts of the world.

Stages of Cultural Adaptation. Over the years, there have been numerous adaptations of the different stages of the theory of cultural adaptation. Cultural Adaptations will appeal to clinicians who treat an ethnically and culturally diverse clientele, as well as to researchers, scholars, and students, who will value the conceptual and methodological discussions of evidence-based psychological practice and cultural adaptations of Pages: There is/was a problem with your internet connection.

Please note that some features may not function properly. Please refresh your browser if your internet. cultural adaptation occurs, and this theory simply affirms this reality. The real choice left for us, then, is the degree of change that we are willing to undergo and embrace.

Cultural Shock and Adapting to Canada A Part of Conversation Questions for the ESL Classroom.. Have you ever been in a situation where you felt you had to "do as the Romans do"?

What is culture shock?

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