Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Explaining Culture (with Netflix)

Want to get inside my head? You know you do- and it will only take 3 hours and 49 minutes.
Watch these three documentaries in this order:
Burma:Encounters in a Forgotten Country
They Call It Myanmar
Burma VJ 
Then read Dan Sperber's book "Explaining Culture", or at least think about this- maybe instead of thinking about culture as a bubble people live in, we'd be better off to think of culture as breath (breathe in what I understand, breathe out what I think).
That means that every breath I take is a breath of changing culture. It means that my ideas, your ideas, are important to the culture. We cannot live by only breathing in, after all.It means no two people have exactly the same culture, because each person will see and hear and think things at least slightly off from the next person's view. It also makes culture a much more intimate thing, a living, breathing, deeply personal and also public thing. It means I share culture with you, whether I like it or not, and so I have a responsibility to care for you, to help you be healthy and strong, since I don't want to breathe in toxic air. I have a responsibility to be involved, and to work for a culture that I WANT my children breathing and growing in.

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