Module I: Introduction
Concepts, Methods, Theories


cultural relativism, the practice of interpreting and judging other cultures in terms of their own internal meaning and value systems.

culture, the system of shared beliefs, values, customs, behaviours, and artifacts that the members of society use to cope with their world and with one another, and that are transmitted from generation to generation through learning.

emic approach, the analysis of cultural elements in terms of a native's explicit or implicit categories and meaning system.

enculturation, the process of transmitting culture through learning.

ethnocentrism, the practice of interpreting and judging other cultures by the values of one's own.

ethnography, the process of recording and describing a culture of a specific people and its traits, patterns, and principles of coherent integration.

ethnology, the theoretical analysis of cultures and cultural elements through comparison, generalization, and hypothesis formation.

etic approach, the analysis of cultural elements in terms of cultural neutral, comparative categories and principles.

holism, a position that maintains that individual culture elements must be understood in terms of how they are articulated to other elements and cannot be understood in isolation.

judgement sampling, selection of research informants on the basis of their cultural knowledge or other special abilities

key informant, an informant selected because of his/her detail cultural knowledge. (See also judgement sample.)

participant observation, the collection of cultural data through first hand experience in the culture and daily lives of the people under study.

random sampling, selection of research informants at random, without any consideration of their personal statuses or abilties.

symbol, an expression that stands for or represents something else, usually a real world condition.

world view, basic philosophical and ethical orientation that provides the basis for a people to organize their perceptions of their natural and social surroundings.

Take Multiple Choice Test for Module I
Review Module