Dominant group/Culture

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The image shows three Sámi Lapp women, c1890s. Credit: j.cosmas.

The characteristics of a particular society or nation, a people's way of life, passed from one generation to the next, and likely with a language and geographical location on Earth is usually considered a culture.

In some instances, these characteristics may come from a dominant group rather than a people themselves.

Dominance may take the form of advantaging a few or a couple while diminishing life's joy for others, such as through fear of harm or death, or worse harm or death.

It may not be about scarce resources.


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"A culture is the combination of the language that you speak and the geographical location you belong to. It also includes the way you represent dates, times and currencies."[1]

Margaret Mead (1955) said that culture “is an abstraction from the body of learned behaviour which a group of people who share the same tradition transmit entire to their children, and, in part, to adult immigrants who become members of the society (1955, p. 12).”[2]

Dominant group

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Examples from primary sources are to be used to prove or disprove each hypothesis. These can be collected per subject or in general.

  1. Accident hypothesis: dominant group is an accident of whatever processes are operating.
  2. Artifact hypothesis: dominant group may be an artifact of human endeavor or may have preceded humanity.
  3. Association hypothesis: dominant group is associated in some way with the original research.
  4. Bad group hypothesis: dominant group is the group that engages in discrimination, abuse, punishment, and additional criminal activity against other groups. It often has an unfair advantage and uses it to express monopolistic practices.
  5. Control group hypothesis: there is a control group that can be used to study dominant group.
  6. Entity hypothesis: dominant group is an entity within each field where a primary author of original research uses the term.
  7. Evolution hypothesis: dominant group is a product of evolutionary processes, such groups are the evolutionary process, produce evolutionary processes, or are independent of evolutionary processes.
  8. Identifier hypothesis: dominant group is an identifier used by primary source authors of original research to identify an observation in the process of analysis.
  9. Importance hypothesis: dominant group signifies original research results that usually need to be explained by theory and interpretation of experiments.
  10. Indicator hypothesis: dominant group may be an indicator of something as yet not understood by the primary author of original research.
  11. Influence hypothesis: dominant group is included in a primary source article containing original research to indicate influence or an influential phenomenon.
  12. Interest hypothesis: dominant group is a theoretical entity used by scholarly authors of primary sources for phenomena of interest.
  13. Metadefinition hypothesis: all uses of dominant group by all primary source authors of original research are included in the metadefinition for dominant group.
  14. Null hypothesis: there is no significant or special meaning of dominant group in any sentence or figure caption in any refereed journal article.
  15. Object hypothesis: dominant group is an object within each field where a primary author of original research uses the term.
  16. Obvious hypothesis: the only meaning of dominant group is the one found in Mosby's Medical Dictionary.
  17. Original research hypothesis: dominant group is included in a primary source article by the author to indicate that the article contains original research.
  18. Primordial hypothesis: dominant group is a primordial concept inherent to humans such that every language or other form of communication no matter how old or whether extinct, on the verge of extinction, or not, has at least a synonym for dominant group.
  19. Purpose hypothesis: dominant group is written into articles by authors for a purpose.
  20. Regional hypothesis: dominant group, when it occurs, is only a manifestation of the limitations within a region. Variation of those limitations may result in the loss of a dominant group with the eventual appearance of a new one or none at all.
  21. Source hypothesis: dominant group is a source within each field where a primary author of original research uses the term.
  22. Term hypothesis: dominant group is a significant term that may require a 'rigorous definition' or application and verification of an empirical definition.

Culture theory

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  1. "[t]he arts, customs, and habits that characterize a particular society or nation",[1]
  2. "[t]he beliefs, values, behaviour and material objects that constitute a people's way of life",[1]
  3. "[a]ny knowledge passed from one generation to the next, not necessarily with respect to human beings",[1] or
  4. "[t]he language and peculiarities of a geographical location"[1]

is called a culture.

A dominant group that controls a particular society or nation determines that society's or nation's culture.


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"It is but natural that when aristocratic ideals should impose themselves upon any polity the art of that polity should reflect the taste, the culture, the ways of life, and the very being of the dominant classes."[3]

Cultural assumptions

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"Nativistic movements tend to arise only when the members of the subject society find that their assumption of the culture of the dominant group is being effectively opposed by it, or that it is not improving their social position."[4]


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"Through the sape, there develops what James Scott (1990), in his brilliant essay on resistance strategies in subcultures, calls "hidden transcripts"-a series of disguised messages and attitudes representing a hidden critique of the dominant group's authority."[5]

"Their experience is encoded in the dominant culture as that of exotic Other, "foreigners," as Ralph Connor revealingly titled his novel of immigration in the appropriate(d) discourse. This dominant group has framed the grounds for discussion of a "national literature.""[6]

"Only those aspects of the minority culture that overlap the dominant culture are recognized by the dominant group."[7]

"All the participants in a dominant culture do not necessarily belong to a dominant group. ... This liquidation is the principal subject of Lovecraft's opus, as I tried to show in "Entre le Fantastique et la Science-Fiction, Lovecraft," Cahiers de l'Herne No. 12 (1969)."[8]


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Def. the "[l]anguage and culture of the dominant group"[9] is called the mainstream.

"Textbooks and lessons focus on the language and culture of the dominant group."[9]


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"[D]ominant groups create and control the meanings and uses of material culture. If other groups wish to be understood by the dominant group, they must express themselves through the goods controlled by the dominant group."[10]


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“[W]hether religious leaders defend the hegemony of dominant social groups or contribute to the creation of an oppositional culture depends on the development of ... the mutually supportive conditions”[11].


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"The difference, as writers like Talal Asad within anthropology and Norman Fairclough within linguistics (Language and Power, 1989) would argue, is that the notion of hegemony problematises how a common social-moral language-a given discourse- achieves and reproduces its dominance, whereas earlier accounts of culture appeared to accept at face value the representations of the dominant group and their claim to speak for all."[12]

Second languages

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"Through glorification, the non-material resources of the dominant groups, including the dominant languages and cultures, and maybe specifically English, are presented as better adapted to meet the needs of 'modern', technologically developed, democratic post-industrial information-driven societies - and this is what a substantial part of ESL (English as a Second Language) ideology is about."[13]

Social oppression

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"A condition of social oppression exists when the following key elements are in place: ... The target group's culture, language, and history is misrepresented, discounted, or eradicated and the dominant group's culture is imposed."[14]

Subordinate groups

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"Although clearly the major changes are found in the culture of the subordinate group, the dominant group also experiences a degree of change as well."[15]

"Where there is a subordination-domination relationship between two groups, a member of the subordinate group may identify himself with the dominant group, having taken over its culture, but he is not accepted by the latter and instead is categorized within the subordinate".[16]


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"[T]he technological superiority of European culture has, until recently, rendered the dominance of colonial groups secure."[4]

"Most dominant groups have been less fortunate. They have found themselves threatened, from the moment of their accession to power, not only by foreign invasion or domestic revolt but also by the insidious processes of assimilation which might, in the long run, destroy their distinctive powers and privileges. This threat was especially menacing when, as in most of the pre-machine age empires, the dominant and dominated groups differed little if at all in physical type."[4]


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"In so doing, it represents the resurgence of knowledges suppressed by a dominant theology and a dominant culture. ... Rather, it is in the realm of the hidden and in the disguised language of infrapolitics, the speech acts and a range of other practices carried out behind the backs of the dominant group, that the voice of the oppressed is to be found."[17]


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  1. Dominant group for culture may be only the bad group.

See also

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  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 "culture, In: Wiktionary". San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. December 23, 2012. Retrieved 2013-03-01.
  2. Mead, M. (Ed.). (1955). Cultural patterns and technical change. New York: Mentor Books.
  3. Edward G. Cox (April 1923). "Art in a Democracy". The Sewanee Review 31 (2): 187-97. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Ralph Linton (April-June 1943). "Nativistic movements". American Anthropologist 45 (2): 230-40. doi:10.1525/aa.1943.45.2.02a00070. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  5. Ch. Didier Gondola (April 1999). "Dream and Drama: The Search for Elegance among Congolese Youth". African Studies Review 42 (1): 23-48. Retrieved 2012-02-09. 
  6. Barbara Godard (Spring 1990). "The Discourse of the Other: Canadian Literature and the Question of Ethnicity". The Massachusetts Review 31 (1/2): 153-84. Retrieved 2012-04-26. 
  7. David Ian Hanauer (September 2003). "Multicultural moments in poetry: The importance of the unique". Canadian Modern Language Review/ La Revue canadienne des langues vivantes 60 (1): 69-87. doi:10.3138/cmlr.60.1.69. Retrieved 2011-10-21. 
  8. Gérard Klein, D. Suvin and Leila Lecorps (March 1977). "Discontent in American science fiction". Science Fiction Studies 4 (1): 3-13. Retrieved 2012-02-09. 
  9. 9.0 9.1 Sheldon Shaeffer (2007). "Advocacy Kit for Promoting Multilingual Education: Including the Excluded" (PDF). Prakanong, Bangkok, Thailand: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Asia and Pacific Regional Bureau for Education. ISBN 92-9223-110-3. Retrieved 2012-08-29.
  10. Paul A. Shackel (2000). Marcia-Anne Dobres and John E. Robb. ed. Craft to wage labor Agency and resistance in American historical archaeology, In: Agency in Archaeology. London: Routledge.,%20Agency%20and%20Resistance%20in%20American%20Historical%20Archaeology%202000.pdf. Retrieved 2011-12-06. 
  11. Dwight B. Billings (July 1990). "Religion as opposition: A Gramscian analysis". American Journal of Sociology 96 (1): 1-31. Retrieved 2011-07-21. 
  12. Brian V. Street (1993). David Graddol. ed. Culture is a Verb: Anthropological aspects of language and cultural process, In: Language and Culture. Clevedon, United Kingdom: Multilingual Matters Ltd. pp. 23-43. ISBN 1-85359-207-2. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  13. Tove Skutnabb-Kangas (January 2000). Linguistic genocide in education, or worldwide diversity and human rights?. Mahwah, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. pp. 818. ISBN 0-8058-3467-2. 
  14. Rita Hardiman, Bailey W. Jackson (1997). Maurianne Adams. ed. Conceptual Foundations for Social Justice Courses, In: Teaching for diversity and social justice: A sourcebook. New York: Psychology Press/Routledge. pp. 16-29. Retrieved 2011-10-08. 
  15. Charles R. Ewen (2000). "From Colonist to Creole: Archaeological Patterns of Spanish Colonization in the New World". Historical Archaeology 34 (3): 36-45. Retrieved 2012-01-03. 
  16. J. S. Slotkin (February 1942). "Jewish-gentile intermarriage in Chicago". American Sociological Review 7 (1): 34-9. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  17. Beverley Haddad (2004). "The manyano movement in South Africa: site of struggle, survival, and resistance". Agenda: Empowering women for gender equity 18 (61): 4-13. doi:10.1080/10130950.2004.9676032. Retrieved 2012-04-01. 

Further reading

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