Culture : Introduction

A way of thinking and feeling, that states the self in totality for life in a group of people that make up a community within the same space and time. This interpretation can be simplified to the way humans think and feel and experience life or in other words as a ‘way of life’. Dr Sidi Gazalba, Islam’s View on Arts Pustaka Antara, KL 1977 pg 2. Culture is entire life style of human being including their inventions and thinking which are suitable with their spirituality and physical for peaceful life. UNDERSTANDING CONCEPTS OF CULTURE In general definition, culture is the entire life style of certain community or their entire thinking aspects and behaviour which were inherit from one generation to another through learning process. But in daily conversation, most of us define culture by associate it with phenomenon like dances, music, foods and costumes’ style only. So the definition here is very narrow and limited and social science experts believe concepts of culture have wider definition. In sociology perspective, culture was defined as an entire results and ideas which were learned and shared by certain community. This includes their beliefs, political values, customs, laws, moral, social institution, arts, languages and material products. Edward B. Taylor has given a classical definition for culture. “..kebudayaan merupakan satu keseluruhan yang kompleks yang mengandungi ilmu pengetahuan, kepercayaan, kesenian, kesusilaan, undang-undang, adat resam dan lain-lain kebolehan serta kebiasan yang diperolehi oleh manusia sebagai anggota masyarakat.” Which means culture is the complex entity which including knowledge, beliefs, arts, decency, laws, customs and other ability or habit which are acquire by humans as a part of community. (Reference: Book from Kefahaman Budaya Seminar, published by Ministry of Culture, Arts and Tourism of Malaysia – December 1999)

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