Senin, 08 Oktober 2012

Cultural Interaction

What is Interaction?

Interaction is a kind of action that occurs as two or more objects have an effect upon one another. The idea of a two-way effect is essential in the concept of interaction, as opposed to a one-way causal effect. A closely related term is interconnectivity, which deals with the interactions of interactions within systems: combinations of many simple interactions can lead to surprising emergent phenomena. Interaction has different tailored meanings in various sciences.
Casual examples of interaction outside of science include:
  • Communication of any sort, for example two or more people talking to each other, or communication among groups, organizations, nations or states: trade, migration, foreign relations, transportation,
  • The feedback during the operation of machines such as a computer or tool, for example the interaction between a driver and the position of his or her car on the road: by steering the driver influences this position, by observation this information returns to the driver.

What is Cultural?

Culture (Latin: cultura, lit. "cultivation") is a modern concept based on a term first used in classical antiquity by the Roman orator, Cicero: "cultura animi". The term "culture" appeared first in its current sense in Europe in the 18th and 19th centuries, to connote a process of cultivation or improvement, as in agriculture or horticulture. In the 19th century, the term developed to refer first to the betterment or refinement of the individual, especially through education, and then to the fulfillment of national aspirations or ideals. In the mid-19th century, some scientists used the term "culture" to refer to a universal human capacity. For the German nonpositivist sociologist Georg Simmel, culture referred to "the cultivation of individuals through the agency of external forms which have been objectified in the course of history".
In the 20th century, "culture" emerged as a central concept in anthropology, encompassing the range of human phenomena that cannot be attributed to genetic inheritance. Specifically, the term "culture" in American anthropology had two meanings: (1) the evolved human capacity to classify and represent experiences with symbols, and to act imaginatively and creatively; and (2) the distinct ways that people living in different parts of the world classified and represented their experiences, and acted creatively.
A distinction is current between the physical artifacts created by a society, its so-called material culture and everything else, the intangibles such as language, customs, etc. that are the main referent of the term "culture".

What is Cultural Interaction?

Late 19th- and early 20th-century Western art is characterized by bold rejections of naturalism and the depiction of local color. The Fauves and German Expressionists, prioritizing prismatic color within the pictorial vocabulary, asserted the autonomy of visual language. In doing this they were influenced both by modernity in Europe and by examples of non-Western art, particularly the arts of African and Oceania that were brought back to Western countries (Britain, France, Germany) as a result of the imperial policies of the great powers.
African sculpture and masks showed Western artists (Gauguin, Matisse, Derain, Vlaminck, Kirschner, Pechstein, Picasso) that naturalism provided only one formula for translating life into art. African art offered powerful evidence of a conceptual approach to image construction. The simplified, stylized forms of African sculpture fascinated European anthropologists and artists who, seeing their own culture as increasingly complex and “civilized,” responded to simplicity. Ignorant of African culture, their enthusiasm for what they deemed “primitive” was a romantic interpretation of sculptural objects that artists found alluring because they were exotic, or radically different to Western art forms.

Definition of culture according to the experts

Culture can be defined vary depending on your point of view each expert. Some terms below will define the culture of some experts and specialists.
a. According to Lehman, Himstree and Baty, culture is defined as a set of life experiences that exist in their own communities. Experience life course are numerous and varied, including how the behavior and beliefs or the beliefs of society itself

b. According to Hofstede, culture is the collective programming of mind which distinguishes the members of one category of people from other categories.

c. According Boove and Thill, culture is a system of symbols sharing the beliefs, attitudes, values​​, expectations and norms for behavior. In this case, all members of the culture have similar assumptions about how people think, behave and communicate as well as tend to do based on those assumptions.

d. According to Murphy and Hildebrant, culture is defined as a typical characteristic of the behavior within a group. Understanding also indicate that verbal and nonverbal communication in a group is also typical of the group and tend to be unique or different from the others.

e. According to Mitchell, the culture mrupakan set of core values​​, beliefs, standards, knowledge, morals, laws and attitudes conveyed somebody in acting, feeling and looked at himself and others.

Examples of cultural interaction 

When many different cultures live together in one society, misunderstandings, biases, and judgments are inevitable—but fair evaluations, relationships, and learning experiences are also possible. Cultures cannot remain entirely separate, no matter how different they are, and the resulting effects are varied and widespread.


Ethnocentrism is the tendency to judge another culture by the standards of one’s own culture. Ethnocentrism usually entails the notion that one’s own culture is superior to everyone else’s.
Example: Americans tend to value technological advancement, industrialization, and the accumulation of wealth. An American, applying his or her own standards to a culture that does not value those things, may view that culture as “primitive” or “uncivilized.” Such labels are not just statements but judgments: they imply that it is better to be urbanized and industrialized than it is to carry on another kind of lifestyle.
     People in other cultures, such as some European cultures, also see American culture through the lens of their own ethnocentrism. To members of other cultures, Americans may seem materialistic, brash, or arrogant, with little intellectual subtlety or spirituality. Many Americans would disagree with that assessment.

Cultural Relativism

The opposite of ethnocentrism is cultural relativism—the examination of a cultural trait within the context of that culture. Cultural relativists try to understand unfamiliar values and norms without judging them and without applying the standards of their own culture.
Example: In India, the concepts of dating, love, and marriage differ from those in the United States. Though love is important, parents choose their children’s spouses according to similarities in educational levels, religions, castes, and family backgrounds. The families trust that love will develop over time but believe that a wedding can take place without it. From an American ethnocentric perspective, arranging marriages appears to be a custom that limits individual freedom. On the other hand, a cultural relativist would acknowledge that arranged marriages serve an important function in India and other cultures.

Culture Shock

The practices of other cultures can be and often are jarring, and even the most adept cultural relativist is not immune to culture shock. Culture shock is the surprise, disorientation, and fear people can experience when they encounter a new culture.
Example: Visitors to Western Europe from Islamic countries often experience culture shock when they see women wearing what they consider to be revealing clothing and unmarried couples kissing or holding hands in public, because these behaviors are forbidden or frowned upon in their own cultures.

Culture Lag

In 1922, the sociologist William Ogburn coined the term culture lag. Culture lag refers to the tendency for changes in material and nonmaterial culture to occur at different rates. Ogburn proposed that, in general, changes in nonmaterial culture tend to lag behind changes in material culture, including technological advances.
Technology progresses at a rapid rate, but our feelings and beliefs about it, part of our nonmaterial culture, lag behind our knowledge of how to enact technological change.
Example: Though the technology that allows people to meet online has existed for years, an understanding of what the proper conduct is in an online “dating” situation lags behind the knowledge of how to use the technology. No definite answers exist to many important questions: How long should people talk over the internet before meeting in person? What is the right interval of response time between emails? New technology has brought with it new questions and uncertainties.

Cultural Diffusion

Cultural diffusion is the process whereby an aspect of culture spreads throughout a culture or from one culture to another.
Example: In the United States in the early 1990s, only people who needed to be available in emergencies, such as doctors, carried cell phones. Today, every member of a family may have his or her own cell phone. In some developing nations, where standard telephone lines and other communications infrastructures are unreliable or nonexistent, cell phones have been welcomed enthusiastically, as they provide people with an effective communication tool.

Differences between cultures and civilizations

Do civilizations and different cultures? If we look, the word civilization in the Indonesian language connotes a sense of manners, courtesy, politeness and subtlety. While popular culture in the sense that all results be interpreted as creativity, taste and human intention, at least as understood at school. In this context, culture encompasses all aspects of human life. Malay world civilization used the word to mean civilization, a word that has its roots in Arabic.According to the 'Effat al Sharqawi, pembedaaan between cultures and civilizations in the Arabic language can be traced from the meaning hadara, tsaqafah and Madaniah. Hadara rooted in the word meaning hadhara present, present in good condition. Here the indications contained space and kindness. Hadara means living settled in the city as opposed to badw which means village, hamlet, wanderer. Tsaqafah connotes aspects of the idea. Tsaqafah rooted in the sense of understanding in depth, and the clever and careful and quick to learn. While Madaniyah associated with aspects of city life, madina.In English the distinction between culture and civilization. Culture rooted in agriculture, which is then interpreted as a form of expression of a profound spirit of community, characterize what is desired by the people, which is reflected in the art, morals and religion. Civilization is rooted in the civitas (city), civility (modesty), which is then interpreted as a manifestation of mechanical progress (technological), characterize what is used by humans, which is reflected in the political, economic and technological. In the words of Will Durant, civilization is social order promoting cultural creation.Ibn Khaldun uses the term 'umran to describe human social organization. Definition according to Ibn Khaldun's umran, based on information Louy Shafi, influenced by the use of the root by the Quran. The Qur'an uses the root word amara refers to the emergence of the social life in certain areas as a result of a group of people menentapnya (letter Hud 61). The second meaning (letter Rum 30) refers to the construction of the facilities associated with the social life of advanced and superior. 'Umran is divided into' umran badawi (bedouin culture) and 'umran Hadhari (civic culture). Badawi life characterized by simplicity, freedom, equality, spontaneous courage, joy and cohesiveness ('ashabiah). Hadhari life characterized by complexity, restrictions (restriction), differentiation (inequality), restraint (inhibitation), clumsiness (clumsiness) and personal interest (self-interest). Social changes led to traits Hadhari life. But it is also an achievement hadara early fall ethical society, which later became the downfall of the socio-material.Bennabi defines civilization as a whole means of moral and material that makes the social guarantees (ad dhamamat al ijtima'iyah) required by members to progress. Or it also defines civilization as the objectification of the will and ability of people in the context of space and time. Regarding culture, tissue culture as he compared the blood that supplies blood to the body's organs. In his idea of ​​the cultural orientation of human civilization to the culture he characterizes the charge with a charge of ethical, aesthetic cargo, freight and cargo industries pragmatic logic (shina'ah - aspects of engineering, engineering).A polemic ever happened between Malik Bennabi by Sayyid Qutb. Sayyid Qutb had plans to publish a book that will discuss towards the civilized Islamic society. But then he changed into society towards Islam, by eliminating attributes civilized. Bennabi criticized because it eliminates the real substantive issues in Islamic societies. In Ma'alim fi Tariq, Johor, Sayyid Qutb refer to someone as a French Muslim critics have given him. Then he explains the substance is intended by it, Islam is a culmination of understanding the nature of Islam itself civilized human or equal to civilization. Polemic is easy for us to understand to understand the difference between civilization and culture (or hadara and tsaqafah). Qutb was referred to by Muslims as the value. While referred to by Bennabi is a manifestation of Islam in history and society.On the other hand Sa'id Hawwa in his book So We Do not run over the three-day use terminology hadara, tsaqafah and Madaniyah to refer to different meanings. Hadara is the widest word to refer to the socio-historical aspects of human groups. Spiritual side, values, arts, science represented by tsaqafah. While aspects of the material represented by Madaniyah said.From the reviews above differences (also on an overview of theories of civilization in a previous post) at least there are some things that we can characterize the difference of civilization and culture.

1. Civilization (hadara, civilization) is rooted in the idea of ​​the city. Progress materials (science and technology), aspects of subtlety, the social arrangement and other aspects of progress.
2. Culture (culture, tsaqafah) is rooted in the idea of ​​values, goals, beliefs that are transmitted through science, art and religion of a society.
3. Culture and civilization are aspects of human social life. A description of the contrasts between cultures and civilizations described by Alija Izebegovic interesting in Building Middle Way. Because civilization and culture are two aspects of human life, there is interrelation between the two. As the interrelation between the spiritual, mental and material in humans.
4. The main idea is contained in the progress of civilization, progress (progress and development). But a society's values, thoughts a regular basis, the cultural identities. The values ​​are not lost when a civilization back or destroyed. What happens is that these values ​​become socially ineffective.
5. A civilization is a cycle in space and time. He experienced ups and downs. Being separated from the cultural contradictions of space and time. It has its own size (size of the right one, just not useful or not) in dunai thought.
6. Build a civilization can not simply accumulate piles of other civilizations product. A civilization is measured from the achievement.
7. To build the civilization of the need for social networks (in terms Bennabi) or social innovation (in terms of Drucker) which created institutions (institutions) which enables him to receive social and develop the products of other civilizations in the context of their own culture.

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