We see culture every day and everywhere. Culture is part of our life and part of our being. It entangles us on an individual basis and on a group basis. But can a society exist without culture?
Culture is ideally a set of norms, values, and ideas that defines or exemplifies a society.
But then again, how does a particular society acquire these attributes? How are they formed?
The reply lies within the prevailing dynamics in a particular society. To be precise, in the mutual characteristics common in all societies.
To begin with, every other society that exists has some sort of relation. In other societies, these relations are small while others are huge and multi-generational.
In essence, there exists “haves” and the “have-nots” in each society, with others exhibiting vast discrepancies between the splendidly rich and the dirt-poor, and while others have differences not closely as great.
Can a Society Exist Without Culture?
To give a proper response to this, one will need to craft an open definition of the term culture.
While at this, culture in social sciences implies everything about the human society that transcends down not in biological aspects.
Moreover, culture runs down from art to food to the government to the hunting techniques. Ostensibly, the only exceptional things that are not culture-related are biological things such as the fact that humans die and also that women give birth to new humans.
From a deeper perspective, if we view culture in a more precise way, then we can understand why culture is essential for societal progress.
Without the aspect of culture, there would be no society
Again, devoid of culture, people would turn out to be animals, moving along and doing things based on the human instinct, which transcends down biologically.
In simple terms, the only culture can have an absolute capacity of creating a society with different traditions, customs, and values.
Reflecting on Society and Culture
Each society has an aspect of religion. In other cases, this implies severe laws enforced by influential clerics while in other cases it implies a free spirituality sense with which religious leaders only serving as helpful leaders.
Culture being an age-old concept tracing back to Ancient Greece and Rome, one can, for instance, learn that a person’s reputation is tethered to society or city of origin, which in most cases was applied directly as a last name, for instance, the Athenian Lawmaker.
Going deeper, Socrates, for instance, had an accusation from a jury of undesirably persuading the youth of Athens. He opted for death over exile since the latter would have uncovered him of his entire Athenian citizenship, an aspect considered to be an integral part of his respective culture and identity.
He sought posterity to understand and remind him as an Athenian or Greek philosopher, but not an individual who resulted in assimilation by a different culture while in exile.
Contemporary, we tend to emphasize the individual place of origin, society, and culture to which one belongs as a matter of priority to identify and help understand them.
In other words, culture is primarily what holds a given society together and acts as a sort of reference point in any given society. Here, without culture then a “society” cannot stand to be a society yet.
Relationship between Culture and Society
Society and culture are very much co-existent.
Surprisingly, one cannot exist without the presence of the other. Culture and society comprise some mutual fundamentals even though the two may not be similar or identical, the crucial variance is that society comprises people while culture entails knowledge, customs, ideas, traditions, beliefs, folkways, skills, institutions, artifacts and organizations.
Interestingly, society is a combination of people with diverse cultures. Conversely, culture deals with the language, food, behaviors, and activities of specific people within an environmental aspect.
Society is mainly a group of individuals existing collectively while culture is essentially anything subsequently made of the aforementioned people. Notably, culture is seen as an institution that attracts cohesion and endurance.
It may have a pool of diverse meanings and relationships but it forms population traits and behavior, beliefs and values.
On the deep side, the relationship among the two is consequently very much extant with culture affecting ways in which the people respond to thoughts and changes while the society being more or less the “external structure”.
No culture! No society!
Retrospectively, through culture, one can express personal uniqueness in all human life aspects, like beliefs, food, schooling as well as sports among many.
On the flip side, any human being in existence in a given society, then this society comprises its culture and values, thus for each human being is a cultural being.
Culture – A Culprit that Divides the Society
Whereas serving to unite people, culture also serves, adversely as a division tool on the same lines. In harmony, a universal union surpasses thousands of limited cultures as they attract redundancy.
We may no longer have the desire to extricate our human selves in a superior means through customs, religions and or languages, while our traditions and customs celebrate our human differences.
Final Words on Society and Culture Co-Existence
To sum up, it’s always a fact! Any given or existent society cannot function without the aspect of culture. The aspect of anarchy is perhaps the closest we as a race could get devoid of culture, and since there is no assembly of people that has upheld simply anarchy for a protracted expanse of time, anarchy is therefore impossible.
In other words, America has a culture. Southern America does too. Other nations have culture too. Subsequently, every humans’ collections have a need or desire to endure some kind of order, which again necessitates culture.
Ultimately, culture is not a fix and rigid tool but rather it is a way of operating in a specific condition so that if an individual faces isolation from his or her main culture, then one would certainly subsist with his or her own culture.
This subsistent culture would again sound simple and noticeable that the same very different would coexist in his current culturally complex counterparts and since most humans create a culture and this culture, as a result, shapes the same human, this can be thought a comparison of mass of matter. Any time a matter gets formed it becomes an intrinsic property of mass.
Likewise, when a collection of humans gathers instinctively, a deliberate conscious culture is created. This collection of people does not invent a sort of culture but rather struggle and co-operate with the external physical world as a result of common behavior of dealing with the surroundings that seep into them.
Thus, it makes great sense that society cannot exist without culture since it’s like thinking matter without the aspect of the mass.