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Folk and Popular Culture


Folk dances were created to go along with the rhythm and beat that these instruments ... Cultural Convergence Cultural convergence is when cultures or aspects of ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Folk and Popular Culture

Folk and Popular Culture
  • World Geography

Cultural Landscape
  • Carl Sauer was a geographer who changed the way
    geography is studied.
  • He looked at the effects of people on the
    landscape and the landscape on people.
  • In other words, the cultural landscape is the way
    the land looks after people have lived on it
  • (aka built environment).
  • The landscape still influences what humans do to
    it because the resources they use come from the
    local environment and influence the buildings,
    roads and other structures that humans create.

Influence of the Physical World
  • climate clothing
  • vegetation Influence food
  • landscape sports

Theories of Influence on Environment
Possibilism The local environment MIGHT
influence local culture The absence of
Mountains and snow make it unlikely that skiing
will become popular in Southern Arizona
Cultural Determinism Humans WILL overcome the
restrictions of the local environment through
the use of technology. Irrigation systems and
hybrid grasses allow golf courses in St. George,
Ut. and Arizona
  • Environmental Determinism
  • The local environment WILL determine local
  • People in warm climates are friendlier than
    people who live in cold climates

More Key Terms
  • Cultural Trait a single attribute of culture
    (bowing or shaking hands)
  • Culture Complex the combination of all cultural
    traits. (All things from samurai, to sumo to
    sushi make up Japans cultural complex)
  • Culture System Incorporate variations in
    cultural traits (southern accent vs. northeast
    accent) while recognizing similarities. Think of
    perceptual/vernacular regions.

9 Nations of North America
World Geographic Realms
Folk Culture
In Latin and German the word folk means
people. As in the customs, music and dress of
the common people. The lives of common people
were, and many times still are, tied to the
land. For example, it was common for people who
lived in the desert to wear turbans and robes to
keep sand out of their hair and away their
  • All culture starts on a local scale and spreads.
  • Folk Culture is local, specific and unique

Folk Music and Dance
Folk music uses instruments that come from the
unique materials that are found within an
environment (biosphere). They are, therefore,
usually acoustic. The lyrics in folk songs
address themes and reinforce values that are
important to the the people of the local culture.
There is often an element of story, that will
teach the young what is important in a way
that is easy to remember. Folk dances
were created to go along with the rhythm and beat
that these instruments produced
  • If people were limited to eat what grows in the
    local environment, then it stands to reason that
    food and beverage is closely associated with

octopus, shrimp and clams
Food and Physical Features
  • Terroir is a French term that explains how the
    distinct physical features of a place give its
    food a unique flavor. Conniseurs of alcoholic
    beverages are especially aware of terroir.
  • Grapeswine ricesake
  • Barley hoppsbeer molassesrum
  • Blue agavetequilla cornwhiskey
  • Potatoesvodka

Food Attractions Taboos
  • Attractions
  • Eat jaguar, become a fierce warrior
  • Eat mandrake, become a great lover

Taboos Jews and Muslims dont eat pork
because the pig is sedentary whereas
Hebrews were nomadic. Pigs also compete with
humans for resources but cant pull a
plow. Hindus have a particular aversion
for beef . Oxen (castrated male cows)
are used to plow fields and pull carts. The
monsoon rains in India require that all
fields are plowed at a certain time of year.
India has lots of people, requiring lots of
fields, therefore, requiring a large
supply of cattle.
  • Housing often reflect the nature of the local

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  • A hearth is a place where important cultural
    traits began.

Notable Cultural Contributions
  • Wei Huang (China)- accupuncture, daoism,
    gunpowder, porcelain
  • Mesopotamia- Judaism, Christianity, Islam, arabic
    numbers, farming, reading and writing, chemistry,
  • Mesoamerica (Mexico/Cenrtal America)- zero, Mayan
  • Indus/Ganges (India)-yoga, Buddhism, Hinduism,
    karma, textiles
  • Nile (Egypt)-astronomy, architecture, make-up
  • Andean America- (S. America)- Llama/Alpaca,
  • West Africa-yams, grains, gold

Relocation Diffusion
Cultural Traits are adopted when people move from
one part of the world to another. Places that
have a lot of migration will be influenced by the
people that move there. Folk culture spreads
mainly through location
Migrant Diffusion
  • Migrant diffusion Is a type of relocation
    diffusion where the innovation spreads and lasts
    only a brief time in the newly adopting place. It
    then moves to another place where the phenomena
  • The flu
  • The excitement surrounding a concert or

Hierachical Diffusion
  • Ideas/things are incorporated into the fabric of
    society because they are mandated by a government
    or other authority.

Cultural Convergence
  • Cultural convergence is when cultures or aspects
    of culture are adopted by a group of people who
    live away from its hearth. Whether the culture
    is adopted because it was forced (hierarchical)
    or because it is practical, when culture extends
    beyond the bounds of its native environment, it
    is considered to be popular.

Cultural Adoption
  • Accultration is when a weaker culture adopts
    traits from a dominant culture.
  • Often when people migrate to another country, the
    immigrant will adopt aspects of the new culture
    and add the new trait to the traits of their home
  • Assimilation Sometimes, the second or third
    generation most aspects of the home culture are
    lost and cultural traits of the dominant culture
    are assimilated.
  • Trans-cultration Two cultures that have equal
    influence on each other with out the same effects
    of accultration or assimilation.

Popular Culture
  • In order for culture to be appealing to large
    numbers of people, it must drop many of the
    unique characteristics that dont make sense to
    people outside of the original hearth.
  • Popular culture is therefore broad, general or

Popular Housing Styles
Cultural Adoption
  • S CURVE late
  • majority adopters
  • early adopters

From Local to Global Work Clothing to Popular
  • Most popular clothing styles and brands had
    practical beginnings.
  • Blue Jeans were invented by a merchant in San
    Francisco named Levi Strauss.
  • Miners in the area kept wearing out or tearing
    their pants.
  • He used a heavier, canvas like, material called
    denim and used copper rivets to reinforce the
    pockets. These pants became popular, not only
    among miners but among many manual laborers who
    needed durable pants.
  • In the late 1960s, middle class teenagers
    seeking their own identity, defied their parents
    by wearing Levis. To make things worse, instead
    of wearing them up around the belly button, as
    was proper, they wore them around their hips.
    Thus, came the term hippie to describe these
    rebels of society.

Origins of Popular Clothing
  • Blue Jeans------Miners
  • Carpenter Pants--Carpenters
  • Painter Pants--- Painters
  • Quicksilver-----surfers
  • Vans------------skateboarders
  • Dickies---------manual laborers

Popular Music
  • Rock and Roll was influenced by blues, jazz and
    folk music. The invention of the electric guitar
    gave rock music its distinct sound. Over the
    years different bands stretched the limits of the
    genre to include new themes and instruments.
  • Of all its changes, one theme still dominates
    the majority of songs. That theme is LOVE
  • .
  • Rolling Stone Magazines Top Ten Influential
  1. The Beatles
  2. Bob Dylan
  3. Elvis Presley
  4. The Rolling Stones
  5. Chuck Berry
  6. Jimi Hendrix
  7. James Brown
  8. Little Richard
  9. Aretha Franklin
  10. Ray Charles

Origins of Popular Music Rap
  • Rap and hip hop can trace its influence back to
    West Africa. The rhythm and beats come from the
    drum, an instrument native to Africa.
  • Rap and hip hop took their current form from the
    funk and soul music played at block parties in
    the Bronx. A Jamaican DJ by the name of DJ Kool
    Herc who started to isolate the percussion breaks
    and talk (rap) over the instrumental parts of the
    music. As this trend continued, DJs began to
    include new elements like using two turntables
  • While the themes of rap music are unique to urban
    environments, the ideas of resistance to
    authority, violence and sex are themes that
    appeal to many teenagers who are seeking a
    separate identity from their parents.

Stimulus Diffusion and Rap
  • Stimulus diffusion explains how new elements are
    born out of some other original idea.
  • Rap and hip hop led to a sub-culture that
    included clothing, dance and graffiti.

Sports and Environmental Factors
  • Some sports are heavily influenced by the local
    environment. Sports such as hockey and skiing
    that rely on cold climates and mountain
    landscapes are limited as to where they can
  • Sports that require a lot of expensive equipment
    (polo, American football) will find it difficult
    to become popular among poorer classes. (80 of
    the world is poor)

Soccer, Basketball and Baseball Global Sports
  • Soccer, basketball and baseball dont require
    expensive equipment and can be played almost
    anywhere. These sports have spread to nearly all
    countries of the world.

Contagious DiffusionGlobalizationPopular Culture
  • Satellite and fiber-optic cables make possible,
    instant communication via TV, internet and
  • This allows cultural ideas to spread much more
    quickly than ever before. Now, instead of a
    cultural trait becoming popular in a country or
    throughout a world region, popular cultural
    traits become popular globally in a very short

Globalization The Up Side
  • The more connected a person is with the rest of
    the world, the more tolerant they will be.
  • Globalization can preserve culture by connecting
    people who live far apart, thereby keeping their
    common culture alive.
  • Improved communication and transportation lower
    prices as corporations compete to cut costs and
    improve quality

Globalization The Down Side
Popular culture often spreads at the expense of
local/folk culture. Many people are afraid that
the spread of American material culture will
erode local cultural values. Multi-National
Corporations are becoming so powerful that they
can dictate working conditions and influence
governments. Whether it is through the media or
via an MNC, many people see the spread of
American culture as a form of cultural
Cultural Divergence
  • Governments and organizations often feel
    threatened by the influence of ideas that will
    challenge their authority.
  • They will often use the following methods to
    resist unwanted influences.
  • Strike back against the perceived threat
  • Limit the ability to access information (Chinas
    state control of media).
  • Limit the ability to travel (Berlin Wall/Iron
  • Create propaganda to spread false information
    against the perceived
  • enemy and paint a positive image of the
    government or organization.

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