Essay on Observation and Analysis of a Cultural Scene

1094 Words 5 Pages
Clifford Geertz once said: “Cultural analysis is intrinsically incomplete. And, worse than that, the more deeply it goes the less complete it is.” I recently spent a short amount of time at a busy 5-way traffic circle near my residence. While sitting in one spot for about 25 minutes, I observed many people doing many different things (mainly driving). Observing the various people made me think of what their particular cultures may have been, and from there, I began thinking of culture in and of itself. What is culture? Culture is defined as: Ideas and behaviors that are learned and transmitted. Nongenetic means of adaptation (Park, 2008). Culture plays a vital role in anthropology. After all, anthropology is the holistic, …show more content…
Needless to say, I was glad to be able to leave after only 25 minutes. Nevertheless, I was there for a reason, and I went about my business. I saw all sorts of people while sitting there. There were old and young people alike, many different nationalities, males as well as females. Some people had children; some had pets, but most were alone. I immediately noticed that there were different behaviors exhibited by the different groups of people. After about 10-12 minutes, I started to realize that there were patterns in behavior that differed from group to group. I thought for a few minutes to try to determine the best way to group the people together. For my observation, I figured that the easiest method for grouping people together was to use age range. The age ranges I used were: Seniors, middle-aged, and young adults. The seniors were more easily noticeable because of their, normally, silver colored hair, gently wrinkled skin, and their general behavior. The way that the seniors I observed moved was unlike the other two groups. They seemed to have a more laid-back, relaxed demeanor. Furthermore, their styles of clothing, as well as the types of cars they were driving, were different from the other age groups. Although they had a more relaxed appearance, their typical style of clothes did not look comfortable at all. Keeping in mind that the temperature was close to 85 degrees, a few of the female seniors were

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