UNIT I: UNDERSTANDING CULTURE, SOCIETY AND POLITICS CULTURAL IDENTITY LEARNING OUTCOMES: The learners are expected to: 1. Demonstrate understanding about human cultural variation, social differences, social change, and political identities; 2. Acknowledge human cultural variation, social differences, social change, and political identities; and 3. Articulate observations on human cultural variation, social differences, social change, and political identities. gender preference socioeconomic class ethnicity religion exceptionality/non-exceptionality nationality CULTURE vs. IDENTITY Culture is the prevailing set of beliefs, values, customs, traditions, laws, and other aspects of life which bind a particular group of people in a particular place or community. Identity, on the other hand, involves the distinct characteristics, traits, and attributes which set a particular group apart from other people The cultural identity of an individual refers to the identity or feeling of belonging to a group. It is considered as part of a person's self-conception and self-perception. It pertains to one’s nationality, ethnicity, religion, social class, generation, locality or any kind of social group that has its own distinct culture. As to cultural awareness, it connotes to the ability of a person to recognize the different beliefs, values and customs that someone has based on that individual's origins. This allows a person to build a more successful personal and professional relationship with others in a diverse environment. In fact, a person's state, region or country of origin and local customs heavily influence his/her cultural background. Thus, cultural identity of individuals refers to the identification or feeling of belongingness to a group. In effect, it is considered as part of a person's selfconception and self-perception. Cultural identity as a whole pertains to one‘s nationality, ethnicity, religion, social class, generation, locality or any kind of social group that has its own distinct culture CULTURAL AWARENESS It connotes to the ability of a person to recognize the different beliefs, values and customs that someone has based on that individual's origins. This allows a person to build a more successful personal and professional relationship with others in a diverse environment. In fact, a person's state, region or country of origin and local customs heavily influence background. his/her cultural CULTURAL BACKGROUND Cultural background essentially consists of the ethnic, religious, racial, gender, linguistic or other socioeconomic factors and values that shape an individual’s upbringing. The cultural background can be shaped at the family, societal or organizational level. Sociologically, people with different cultural backgrounds need to interact with each other. Such interactions lead to strong relationships that would help build diverse communities and enable them to achieve predetermined goals. In fact, we can learn about other people’s culture by interacting with them, by evaluating their biases towards other cultures, by inquiring pertinent questions and by simple observations. For example, in the Philippine society, it is necessary to work effectively with people from different regions or with those who speak a different language to promote economic development and other primary socio-cultural undertakings. Concrete understanding of one’s culture starts with recognition of the values, customs and traditions passed down to us by our forebears or those acquired from personal experiences while interacting in a given society. FACTORS THAT SHAPE CULTURAL BACKGROUND GENDER AND SEXUALITY AN A common distinguishing factor of a person‘s cultural background is gender and sexuality. Gender refers to the personal traits and social roles of the male and female members of society. Sexuality is the state of being either masculine or feminine. A person‘s masculinity or manhood consists of a set of attributes, behaviors and roles generally associated with men. A person‘s femininity or womanhood refers to a set of attributes, behaviors, and roles generally associated with women. GENDER AND DEVELOPMENT Gender stereotypes are generalizations about the roles of each gender. Gender roles are generally neither positive nor negative, they are simply inaccurate generalizations of the male and female attributes. Since each person has individual desires, thoughts, and feelings, regardless of their gender, these stereotypes are incredibly simplistic and do not at all describe the attributes of every person of each gender. SOCIO-ECONOMIC STATUS INDIVIDUAL’S Another common cultural identification factor is the level of an individual‘s social standing and financial position in the society. This is known as socio-economic status, a personal or family's financial and social esteem on the basis of income, education, and occupation. Hence, it is the totality of a person‘s social position and wealth combined. The socio-economic class refers to the status of every individual from the sociological and economic points of view. Social status means a person‘s standing or rank in the social ladder of stratification based on prestige, power, popularity, etc. Economic status means a person‘s place in the society‘s economic stratification based on wealth, property, and total assets. ETHNICITY Ethnicity is a condition in which a social group belongs to a common national or cultural tradition. The adjective ethnic relates to large groups of people who have certain racial, cultural, religious, or other traits in common. The Philippines are inhabited by different ethno-linguistic groups, the majority of whose own languages are Polynesian in origin. Many of these groups converted to Christianity, particularly the lowland-coastal groups, and adopted many foreign elements of culture. Ethno-linguistic groups include the Ivatans, Ilocanos, Pangasinenses, Kapampangans, Tagalogs, Bicolanos, Visayans (Masbateños, Hiligaynons/Ilonggos, Cebuanos, Boholanos, Warays and Surigaonons) Maranaos, Subanons and Zamboangueños. GENERATIONS Technology, in particular the rapid evolution of how people communicate and interact, is another generationshaping consideration. Baby Boomers grew up as television expanded dramatically, changing their lifestyles and connection to the world in fundamental ways; Generation X grew up as the computer revolution was taking hold; and Millennials came of age during the internet explosion. Most Millennials were between the ages of 5 and 20 when the 9/11 terrorist attacks shook the nation, and many were old enough to comprehend the historical significance of that moment, while most members of Gen Z have little or no memory of the event. Millennials also grew up in the shadow of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which sharpened broader views of the parties and contributed to the intense political polarization that shapes the current political environment in American society for decades. And most Millennials were between 12 and 27 during the 2008 election, where the force of the youth vote became part of the political conversation and helped elect the first black president. Added to that is the fact that Millennials are the most racially and ethnically diverse adult generation in the nation’s history. Yet the next generation – Generation Z – is even more diverse. Beyond politics, most Millennials came of age and entered the workforce facing the height of an economic recession. As is well documented, many of Millennials’ life choices, future earnings and entrance to adulthood have been shaped by this recession in a way that may not be the case for their younger counterparts. The long-term effects of this “slow start” for Millennials will be a factor in American society for decades. In this progression, what is unique for Generation Z is that all of the above have been part of their lives from the start. The iPhone launched in 2007, when the oldest Gen Zers were 10. By the time they were in their teens, the primary means by which young Americans connected with the web was through mobile devices, WiFi and highbandwidth cellular service. Social media, constant connectivity and on-demand entertainment and communication are innovations Millennials adapted to as they came of age. For those born after 1996, these are largely assumed. The implications of growing up in an “always on” technological environment are only now coming into focus. Recent research has shown dramatic shifts in youth behaviors, attitudes and lifestyles – both positive and concerning – for those who came of age in this era. What we don’t know is whether these are lasting generational imprints or characteristics of adolescence that will become more muted over the course of their adulthood. Beginning to track this new generation over time will be of significant importance. The implications of growing up in an “always on” technological environment are only now coming into focus. Recent research has shown dramatic shifts in youth behaviors, attitudes and lifestyles – both positive and concerning – for those who came of age in this era. What we don’t know is whether these are lasting generational imprints or characteristics of adolescence that will become more muted over the course of their adulthood. Beginning to track this new generation over time will be of significant importance.