Culture and Sociology of the Nacerima Three of these that illustrate this are teeth brushing as a norm, the hospital as an institution, and medicines as a material good.
Body Rituals Among the Nacirema," by Horace Miner is an article that offers a social look at the American lifestyle. The author steps outside of the American culture and describes how somebody unfamiliar to the culture might describe it. This manages to open the reader's eyes to the fact that the American culture can be seen as just as strange as unfamiliar foreign cultures. The article is based around the concept that the, "fundamental belief underlying the whole system appears to be that the human body is ugly and that its natural tendency is to debility and disease" (Miner). The culture described is based on rituals that attempt to prevent this journey towards debility and disease. The norms, institutions and material goods described are all based on ...
Brushing of the teeth is presented as one of the norms of the culture. This is closely linked to the emphasis on health. As the author says, "The Nacirema have an almost pathological horror of and fascination with the mouth, the condition of which is believed to have a supernatural influence on all social relationships" (Miner). The author takes this to the extreme explaining that, "Were it not for the rituals of the mouth, they believe that their teeth would fall out, their gums bleed, their jaws shrink, their friends desert them, and their lovers reject them" (Miner). The most interesting thing about this presentation of teeth brushing is that it is true - the state of one's teeth is something that impacts on how someone is viewed and has social significance…
Three of these that illustrate this are teeth brushing as a norm, the hospital as an institution, and medicines as a material good.
Like the "box or chest which is built into the wall" ("Body Ritual among the Nacirema, p. 2) in Nacirema homes, Americans spend a great deal of time taking prescription drugs and over the counter remedies into and out of their medicine cabinets. For Americans, these medicine cabinets often have mirrors, a help in scrutinizing their ever-imperfect bodies. The faces and teeth of Americans are washed and brushed in
The Nacirema occupy a broad and diverse geographic zone between Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean. Their highly developed market economy belies, or perhaps informs, the evolution of elaborate body rituals. The body rituals of the Nacirema are diverse and usually gendered. The underlying assumptions of the Nacirema body rituals are that the human form in its natural, unadulterated or unadorned state, is inherently profane, impure, and aesthetically unpleasing. Therefore, the
Bell Curve and Correlational Research Richard J. Herrnstein and Charles Murray, authors of The Bell Curve, have received criticism for their inability to establish the "truth" in their research of intelligence. Rather than using objective tests to determine if their findings were valid (e.g., control groups and follow-up studies; varying conditions; factoring in margin for error), they assumed that their research findings were accurate based on one premise - the IQ
Rituals and Witchcraft Body Ritual among the Nacirema by Horace Miner Different cultures have various ways of looking at the human body and the manifestation of which in the community or society they live in. Some open societies do not mind having people displaying their bodies in public along with accoutrements that add beauty thereto. Other closed societies frown on display of any body parts especially with female members. The Nacirema of
start from the premise that, in some form or other and at some moment or other, people require order and leadership in their lives and, particularly, in their societies. The answer here does not propose to discuss why that is, although, as a general assumption, it may be related to an overall rejection of chaos and what this brings about, especially from what history has taught us about periods
Cultural Observation of Dress Why do all humans engage in the act of dressing the body? Consider how dress relates to both the physical and the social needs of the wearer. Everyone dresses according to social factors and to make themselves more physically appealing to other. This helps them to be seen as hip and enhance their appearance. These variables ensure that the social and individual needs of the person are met.