Education Talks: Why cultural education matters
One of the main themes of the volume is the relationship between education and culture. The role of cultural behaviour in the development of communicative skills is analysed both in some papers focused on Russia, Italy, India or Turkey. On the other hand if the culture of a society is materialistic, then its Understand the relationship between culture and education. .. However the existing system of education in India has not evolved from. To understand the relation between education and culture. • To understand the impact of culture on education. • To understand the influence of educational.
Culture is a collective term for socially transmitted behaviour patterns. In ordinary language culture means good manners and good taste. Taylor defines culture as "that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom and any other capabilities and habits, acquired by man as a member of society. But culture cannot be defined. It is better to describe it. The culture of a people is the way of life of that people, the things its people value, the things they don't value, their habits of life, their work of art, what they do and what they like.
By material elements is meant the whole of man's material civilization, tools, weapons, clothing, machines and industry. By non-material elements is meant language, art religion, morality, law and government. According to the subjects there are different kinds of culture: These personal likes, dislikes, interests, modes of thinking and patterns of social behaviour constitute his personal culture.
Similarly, different communities have their different customs, traditions, beliefs and styles of living which is known as community culture. Likewise each nation has some distinct patterns of ideals, values, modes of thoughts and behaviour.
Such national traits are known as national culture. Further with the rise in the means of transport and communication the whole world has shrunk into a small unit. The whole world are now supposed to be having common values of life such as cooperation, empathy, sympathy, social services, social awakening and social sensitiveness which is termed as world culture.
According to contents there are two types of culture in every society: It includes all those man made things and objects which human society has created for its physical welfare.
As for example clothes, utensils, TV, radio, various machines Non material culture: It includes those ideals, attitudes and values which modify the behaviour of an individual. Language, literature, art, music, religion, customs, traditions etc are some of the example of non material culture.
Culture is sum total of acquired traits. A new born baby acquires traits in the process of growing up. These experiences contribute to the formation of his personal culture.
Different societies of the world have different cultural patterns establishing the different identities of different nations.
Cultural traits and patterns are transmitted from generation to generation. Each generation is free to modify the cultural heritage and transmit it to the next generation. Cultural patterns are powerfully conditioned and influenced by the trends which appear from time to time according to different circumstances and conditions.
The transmission is a continuous process. A culture is good if it has utility to the individual and to the society. If it does not fulfill this purpose then it decays and dies out in the long run. Cultural fanaticism promotes conflicts and chaos.
Therefore, one should see and adopt cultural beauties and excellencies of all the culture that exist in the world. It will promote the world culture on the one hand where as on the other cultural integration will take place.
Culture is not static but is dynamic. It changes and grows with the change of time. Due to rapid rise in transport and means of communication one culture adopts another culture and become composite culture. One can notice that our culture has traveled a long way and changed from its previous times in numerous ways. Our thinking patterns, values, beliefs, behavior ideals etc all has changed.
The different cultures of the world are interacting among themselves and syntheses of culture are taking place. We are concerned not only with the perpetuation of society but with its improvement. Cultural lag is defined as the degree to which certain aspects of culture lag behind the changes in its other related aspects. In other words, the vast difference between the material and non material culture is known as social or cultural lag.
All the parts of our modern culture are not changing at the same rate and since there is correlation or inter-dependence of parts, a rapid change in one part requires re-adjustment through other changes in various correlated parts. A culture lag occurs "when the different aspects of the society fail to adjust themselves to changes effected in some of its parts.
In our society, the economic system is changing fast, industrial economy is replacing the rural economy. A lot of work is being done by machines or we can say that human labour is being replaced by machines. But the religious and social structures are not keeping pace with the changes in the economic structure. Education is the only means to bridge the cultural lag. Education as a part of culture has the twin functions of conservation and modification or renewal of the culture.
Education is conceived as a systematic effort to maintain a culture. Education can impart knowledge, training and skills as well as inculcate new ideas and attitudes among the young. It is culture in which education germinates and flowers. It is the culture also upon which education exerts, in turn, a nourishing influence. The intimate relationship between culture and education is evident from the fact the one of the major aim of education is to impart to the child cultural heritage and social heritage.
Thus, culture plays an important role in the life of a person. To understand the nature of its importance, it will be easy to understand how education of various elements of culture can help a person. It can be seen in the following manner: Adaptation to the natural environment: Everywhere man lives in a definite natural environment to which they adapt themselves. Differences in the natural environment of different communities pave the way for differences in their cultures.
In all the tribes of India, the members of the community behave in a particular way which is adapted by the coming generations of the particular community or tribe.
It is this mode of behaviour which makes up culture. Adaptation to the social environment: Culture includes customs, traditions, beliefs etc. All of these help the individual to adapt to his social environment. It must be kept in mind that all these elements undergo gradual changes as the social environment changes. Culture determines the patterns of social control, through which the individual is subjected to remain attached to that group. This knowledge enables him to adapt to social environment and thus achieve his socialization.
The personality of the individual is manifested through his pattern of behaviour. Culture influences the physical, mental, moral, social, aesthetic and emotional aspects of individual. Thus, the behaviour of the individual is greatly influenced by the culture.
The influence of culture on Education
Socialization as a process of acculturation: Many cultural anthropologists regard socialization as a process of acculturation or the culture of a group. In the words of Martin and Stendlar, "Culture refers to the total way of life of a people that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, customs and any other capabilities and habits, acquired by man as a member of society.
One must mix up with others to learn the habits etc, of the society to which he belongs. In other words to socialize oneself one must learn the culture of the society. Brubacher has observed, "We cannot teach the coming generation to be good simply by teaching them to be wise. They must have plenty of opportunity to habituate themselves to moral ideals. Instead of learning lessons in school apart from life, school must incorporate into itself a social context of shops, laboratories, and play grounds.
Moral learning in school and college must be continuous with moral training outside through field trips, community activities and the like. If schools fulfil this larger function, we may be assured that anything learned in an enterprise having an aim and in cooperation with others will be inescapable moral. Society is very keen that its young members should not lapse into barbarity and ignorance. Whatever, it has attained in social, cultural, religious and other fields it feels its bounden duty to transmit it to the next generation.
As the society has become more complex and knowledge is piling up it feels the need for formal education and thus society starts schools to educate its members.
The purpose is two fold: To transmit cultural heritage. To improve the society. Transmission of culture heritage: To perpetuate present progress we should transmit the cultural heritage.
Only physical reproduction is not sufficient; we should equip the new generation with our attainments in all fields of life. Here we should exploit the innate tendencies, needs and interests of the children for the purpose of education. Our education should also be in consonance with the mental 'make-up' of the students. Improvement of the Society: Without improvement the society will stagnate.
Education is not only to reflect the social conditions but also to improve them. With the advancement of science and technology our ways of life are also undergoing tremendous change. If we would not cope with the present advancement there would be 'cultural lag'.
We must adjust ourselves with the fast changing world. So education must adapt itself to the changing conditions. But as always happens some new things are not very desirable.
So we shall have to guard ourselves against the tendency of the schools to import everything new in the society. If old and out-dated things are to be discarded we shall have to be vigilant against blind and slavish imitation of the new developments.
It is through education that we can prepare students to evaluate the past and understand the present and to be prepared for future. In short the students should be taught to get inspiration from the inspiring past, to live in the dynamic present and to face the challenging future.
Education is obviously reflection of the social, cultural and political conditions prevailing outside. It reflects the society but it has within it the seeds of dynamics of change and thus can keep pace with the fast changing world.
The schools thus are not blind followers of the dictates of the society but when it degenerates they can improve it and enthuse it with new idea of thought and new horizons of desirable ideals. Role of the School: The school has to give up its ivory tower isolation. It must be closely linked with the society. Branford writes "The school should be an idealized epitome or model of the world, not merely the world of ordinary affairs, but the whole of humanity, body and soul, past present and future.
Greene states, "The good school programme stems from community needs as an integral part of the life of the people. It is made by, for, and of those it would serve. In promoting culture therefore, the school curriculum through the various subjects promotes and enhances the learning of culture.
The subjects taught transmit certain values: Kenyan schools teach English and Kiswahili as the major languages of communication. Disciplines like agricultural science, natural sciences, vocational education are taught in schools. Spiritual or moral education is taught through religion and by precept. Members of the society learn about their environment by studying geography and natural sciences. Schools therefore transmit the culture of the day.
For example in Kenya today through the system of education, emphasis is on technical and agricultural subjects for the purposes of enhancing self-employment. Society, culture and education are strictly interrelated and each one is necessary for the continued existence of the others. Society has the responsibility of producing and preparing its members well to keep the society going.
To do this, it expresses its culture and teaches it. In this way, transmitting culture becomes education itself, as education is not possible without a living culture and society Education transmits culture in a number of ways, for example; 1. Teaching languages for education that is, tools for communication e. Kiswahili, English and others. Knowledge and skills in material culture are taught in agriculture, natural sciences, vocational and technological courses.