What is Culture?
Man alone of all the animals creates and transmits a social environment. It is his unique characteristic; other animals can acquire behavior pattern by initiating other animals or by resorting to trial and error. They do not transmit their learned activities to future generations through languages and other symbolic systems neither they can make physical objects to use as tools in their efforts to get food, shelter and other goods nor they pass them on to succeeding enervations. Man in adjusting to the natural environment – and to his fellows – fashions vast quantities of physical and biological materials and large bodies of through and action pattern. All these he uses to fulfill his desires and needs which make it possible for him to satisfy present and expanding wants, to satisfy new values, to express creative desire, to store product for future use and to transmit them to succeeding generations.
The total content of this produced social environment of a society its culture. It is the integrated, interdependent whole of these socially produced and inherited action patterns built around a body of socially created physical and biological material. The culture of society therefore the total environment of the physio-social, bio-social and psycho-social universes, man has produced and socially created mechanisms through these social products operate.
Culture has been Defined in a Number of Ways:
Tylor defined “Culture as that complex which includes knowledge beliefs, morals, laws, customs and any other capabilities and habits acquired by a man as member of society”.
According to Maclver “Culture is the expression of our nature, in our modes or living and thinking, inter course, in our literature, in religion, in recreation and enjoyment”.
Hepple says “Culture includes all the material and non material traits in our environment which are man made or modified by man and transmitted from one generation to another by the process of learning”.
Culture can be defined as historically derived pattern of living of an individual. It includes traditions, customs, folkways and mores. All these ideas integrated together for pattern of living called culture.
Cuber defined “Culture is the continually changing patterns of learned behavior and products of learned (including attitudes, values, knowledge and material objects) which are shared by and transmitted among the member of society”.
Culture is a socially standardized, way of feeling, thinking and acting that man acquires as a member of society.
Culture includes everything that man learns or acquired as a member of particular society.
To summarize, culture is continually changing it is learned behavior which has been organized into patterns, it includes products of learned behaviors – ideas, knowledge, values and material objects and is shared and transmitted among members of society.