Open Culture

Written by Alana Jolley

June 28, 2015

Open Culture

Open culture is truly about cultural understanding.  There are many places “out there” to research and study culture.  However, most of the knowledge available has not been curated.  In other words much about culture is not valid information; or it is only about travel information that barely gives a glimpse of the culture of your destination.  Culture is not just about food, regalia, or the high-profile people.

My Cultural Anthropology teacher, long ago, summed up what culture is actually about.  He said, “Culture is really about everyday life.”  What do people do when they wake up?  How do they make a living?  What are their core values?  How is food acquired and shared? How are children reared and taught about their own culture? Cultural knowledge is also better understood and studied within the background of anthropology, as on this site.

Since culture is learned and not inherited; how do people learn how to thrive in their own surroundings?  Humans learn culture, first from their parents and relatives.  They also learn culture from their peers.  Educational opportunities also provide cultural insights.

Culture changes.  It is dynamic and not static. All people do not not live their culture the same way.  Cultural changes can be adaptive or maladaptive.  What does that mean?  What are bio-cultural connections?  We hear so much; and read so much about diversity.  Usually diversity is discussed about outside appearances of people; yet diversity is so much more.

Learning how people are enculturated is extremely enlightening.  It helps people discover themselves.  Understanding the role of enculturation, and how it produces certain behaviors, helps us to understand others in ways we might not consider.  In addition to what is shared on this site in cultural understanding, the following link is a great place to acquire more responsible cultural knowledge.

The courses on,, are quick, easy to comprehend, and also free. The difference is that specific cultural knowledge is focused on specific aspects of culture, such as religion, making a living, and enculturation, within specific cultural environments – like the Global Villages that are highlighted.  There is much open culture here to explore when you want to focus on small units of understandable knowledge, which can be acquired on your own time, anytime, and anywhere since we are also very mobile.

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