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Unit 03 Vocabulary

Definitions for Topics 3.1-3.8

cultural practices the social activities and interactions - ranging from religious rituals to food preferences to clothing - that collectively distinguish group identity
cultural relativism the idea that a person's beliefs, values, and practices should be understood based on that person's own culture, rather than be judged against the criteria of another.
taboo A restriction on behavior imposed by social custom.
nativist a person who favors those born in his country and is opposed to immigrants
ethnocentrism Belief in the superiority of one's nation or ethnic group.
cultural landscape the visible imprint of human activity and culture on the landscape
sequent occupance successive societies leave their cultural imprints on a place that add up to the cultural landscape. this symbolizes Human Environment Interaction. ... spread of a feature from one place to another over time.
postmodern architecture Combines traditional and contemporary influences.
traditional architecture buildings use building materials available and reflect social/environmental customs of the people EX) log cabins
ethnicity Identity with a group of people that share distinct physical and mental traits as a product of common heredity and cultural traditions.
ethnic neighborhood an area within a city containing members of the same ethnic background
ethnic enclave A place with a high concentration of an ethnic group that is distinct from those in the surrounding area
indigenous people natives of an area who have been conquered or dominated by others who came later
cultural beliefs The predominant beliefs in a culture about right and wrong, what is most important in life, and how life should be lived. May also include beliefs about where and how life originated and what happens after death.
land use Various ways humans use the land such as agricultural, industrial, residential, or recreational
diffusion The process of spread of a feature or trend from one place to another over time
sense of place State of mind derived through the infusion of a place with meaning and emotion by remembering important events that occurred in that place or by labeling a place with a certain character.
placemaking The deliberate shaping of an environment to facilitate social interaction and improve a community's quality of life.
landscapes The overall appearance of an area that is shaped by both human and natural influences
religion a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny
centripetal force An attitude that tends to unify people and enhance support for a state
centrifugal force a force that divides people and countries
hearth The region from which innovative ideas originate
relocation diffusion The spread of a feature or trend through bodily movement of people from one place to another.
expansion diffusion The spread of a feature or trend among people from one area to another in a snowballing process.
stimulus diffusion The spread of an underlying principle, even though a specific characteristic is rejected.
hierarchical diffusion The spread of a feature or trend from one key person or note of authority or power to other persons or places
contagious diffusion The rapid, widespread diffusion of a feature or trend throughout a population.
colonialism Attempt by one country to establish settlements and to impose its political, economic, and cultural principles in another territory.
imperialism domination by one country of the political, economic, or cultural life of another country or region
dialect A regional variety of a language distinguished by vocabulary, spelling, and pronunciation.
isogloss A boundary that separates regions in which different language usages predominate.
linguist a language specialist
language families large groups of languages having similar roots
language branches A group of languages that share a common origin but have evolved into different languages
language groups set of languages with a relatively recent common origin and many similar characteristics
bilingual Able to speak two languages
multilingual speaking several languages
pidgin A simplified form of speech developed from two or more languages
official language The language adopted for use by the government for the conduct of business and publication of documents.
extinct language A language that was once used by people in daily activities but is no longer used.
lingua franca A language mutually understood and commonly used in trade by people who have different native languages
Logogram/Ideogram/Pictogram A symbol that represents a word rather than a sound
creolization The blending of African, European, and some Amerindian cultural elements into the unique sociocultural systems found in the Caribbean.
Creole Language A language that results from the mixing of a colonizer's language with the indigenous language of the people being dominated.
ethnic religion a religion that is particular to one culturally distinct group of people
universalizing religion A religion that attempts to appeal to all people, not just those living in a particular location.
cultural hearth Locations on Earth's surface where specific cultures first arose.
Indo-European Languages languages from the indo-european family. Spoken by half of the world's people, and includes, among others, the germanic, romance, and slavic subfamilies.
toponyms The name given to a portion of Earth's surface.
Christianity A monotheistic system of beliefs and practices based on the Old Testament and the teachings of Jesus as embodied in the New Testament and emphasizing the role of Jesus as savior.
Islam A religion based on the teachings of the prophet Mohammed which stresses belief in one god (Allah), Paradise and Hell, and a body of law written in the Quran. Followers are called Muslims.
Sikhism the doctrines of a monotheistic religion founded in northern India in the 16th century by Guru Nanak and combining elements of Hinduism and Islam
Buddhism Belief system that started in India in the 500s BC. Happiness can be achieved through removal of one's desires. Believers seek enlightenment and the overcoming of suffering.
Judaism A religion with a belief in one god. It originated with Abraham and the Hebrew people. Yahweh was responsible for the world and everything within it. They preserved their early history in the Old Testament.
Hindusim A religion and philosophy developed in ancient India, characterized by a belief in reincarnation and a supreme being who takes many forms
Animism The belief that bodies of water, animals, trees, and other natural objects have spirits
pilgrimage A journey to a place considered sacred for religious purposes.
secularism A doctrine that rejects religion and religious considerations.
Zionism A policy for establishing and developing a national homeland for Jews in Palestine.
denomination A division of a branch that unites a number of local congregations in a single legal and administrative body.
religion branch A large and fundamental division within a religion
sect A relatively small group that has broken away from an established denomination.
fundamentalism Literal interpretation and strict adherence to basic principles of a religion (or a religious branch, denomination, or sect).
Sharia Body of Islamic law that includes interpretation of the Quran and applies Islamic principles to everyday life
theocracry A government controlled by religious leaders
polytheistic Belief in many gods
monotheistic Belief in one God
caste system a set of rigid social categories that determined not only a person's occupation and economic potential, but also his or her position in society
Karma (Hinduism and Buddhism) the effects of a person's actions that determine his destiny in his next incarnation
diaspora A dispersion of people from their homeland
social construct A concept or practice that is construct of a group. Everybody in society agrees to treat a certain aspect a certain way regardless of its inherent value in nature.
urbanization An increase in the percentage and in the number of people living in cities.
globalization Actions or processes that involve the entire world and result in making something worldwide in scope.
time-space convergence The idea that distance between some places is actually shrinking as technology enables more rapid communication and increased interaction among those places
cultural convergence The tendency for cultures to become more alike as they increasingly share technology and organizational structures in a modern world united by improved transportation and communication.
assimilation the social process of absorbing one cultural group into harmony with another
syncretism The unification or blending of opposing people, ideas, or practices, frequently in the realm of religion. For example, when Christianity was adopted by people in a new land, they often incorporate it into their existing culture and traditions.
multiculturalism a condition in which ethnic groups exist separately and share equally in economic and political life
acculturation The adoption of cultural traits, such as language, by one group under the influence of another.
cultural traits The specific customs that are part of the everyday life of a particular culture, such as language, religion, ethnicity, social institutions, and aspects of popular culture.
creolization The blending of African, European, and some Amerindian cultural elements into the unique sociocultural systems found in the Caribbean.
lingua franca A language mutually understood and commonly used in trade by people who have different native languages
cultural divergence the tendency for a culture to become less similar over time; some people change their religious and philosophical beliefs as they age or move away, becoming less similar to their original culture
indigenous languages Language native to a region and spoken by the indigenous people of that region.
cultural practices the social activities and interactions - ranging from religious rituals to food preferences to clothing - that collectively distinguish group identity
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