What Is High Culture


High culture – Wikipedia

The term “high art” leads to this page. See High Art for more information about the film. Culture of high quality covers both the aesthetic items of value that a society collectively regards as exemplary art, as well as the intellectual works of philosophy, history, art, and literature that a society considers to be indicative of its cultural heritage.


A society’s common repository of broad-range knowledge and tradition (e.g., folk culture) that transcends the social-class system of the society is referred to as “high culture” in popular usage. It can be defined as the culture of an upper class (anaristocracy) or of an astatus class (theintelligentsia). In sociology, the word high culture is contrasted with the term low culture, which refers to the types of popular culture that are distinctive of the less-educated social strata, such as the barbarians, the Philistines, and the hoi polloi (the common people) (the masses).


Before the mid-19th century, high culture was viewed as a cultural notion shared by the humanities, according to European history. However, in the book Culture and Anarchy, Matthew Arnold established the phrase high culture for the first time (1869). Culture, according to the Preface, is defined as “the disinterested pursuit of man’s perfection,” which is sought, gained, and completed by an attempt to “know the finest that has been said and thought in the world.” Philosophical thought is included in such a literary concept of great culture.

  1. In a critical sense, the phrases “popular culture” and “mass culture” are used to contrast the terms “high culture” and “low culture.” T.
  2. Eliot stated in Notes Towards the Definition of Culture (1948) that high culture and popular culture are both necessary and complimentary components of a society’s culture.
  3. Harold Bloom and Frederic R.
  4. According to Steven Johnson of the Media Studies Department at the University of California, Los Angeles, “the classics—and soon to be classics—are” in themselves descriptions and explanations of the cultural institutions that created them, unlike popular culture.

History in the West

The classical-world traditions of intellectual and aesthetic life in Ancient Greece (c. 8th century BC – AD 147) and Ancient Rome (c. 753 BC – AD 476), which served as the foundation for the high culture of the Western world. In the classical Greco-Roman tradition, the ideal form of language was written and preserved in works of high style, which were then passed down to subsequent generations (correct grammar, syntax, and diction). Certain forms of language used by authors in historically significant epochs were held up as eternally valid models and normative standards of excellence in antiquity and the Renaissance; for example, theAttic dialectof ancient Greek spoken and written by the playwrights and philosophers of Periclean Athens (fifth century BC); and the form of classical Latin used in the “Golden Age” of Roman culture (c.

70 B.C.

It’s true that in the Greco-Roman era, physical work was considered to be beneath the level of purely intellectual occupations, as were commercial and technical endeavors.

This indicated a link between high culture and the upper classes, whose inherited riches gave the opportunity for such intellectual development to take place.

When it came to intellectual values, the classical intellectual values of the fully rediscovered Grco–Roman culture served as the cultural capital of the upper classes (and the aspiring) during the Renaissance, and they were aimed at the complete development of human intellectual, aesthetic, and moral faculties.

Renaissance humanism quickly swept throughout Europe, serving as a major foundation for upper-class education for several centuries.

It instructs the reader to acquire and possess knowledge of the Greek and Roman Classics, as education is considered integral to the social-persona of the aristocrat in the Renaissance.

Early definitions of high culture were primarily defined in educational terms, and included critical study and understanding of the Grco–Roman arts and humanities, which provided a significant portion of the basis for European cultures and civilizations.

With the subsequent prodigious development of modern European languages and cultures, the modern definition of “high culture” encompasses not only Greek and Latin texts, but a much wider canon of select literary, philosophical, historical, and scientific books written in both ancient and modern languages as well as translations into other languages.

the Parthenon, the painting and sculpture ofMichelangelo, the music ofJohann Sebastian Bach, etc). Collectively, the works of art and writings described above reflect the pinnacle of Western civilization at its highest level of achievement.

Cultural traditions

Artists who create work that reflects their creativity are considered to be of great artistic caliber in Western and some East Asian cultural traditions. In the Western world, this tradition originated in Ancient Greece and was strengthened by the Renaissance, as well as by Romanticism, which abolished the hierarchical classification of genres within the fine arts that had been formed during the Renaissance. China distinguished between the literati painting created by the scholar-officials and work produced by ordinary artists, who worked in a variety of genres, as well as ornamental arts such as Chinese porcelain, which were manufactured by anonymous artisans employed in big factories.

Cultural capital

During their Grand Tour in 1731–32, four English lords were on board a ship. A first-hand immersion in the high culture of the Western world, the Grand Tour of Europe, was a rite of passage in socially stratified Europe and the Americas. It supplemented and completed the book education of agentleman, from the nobility, the aristocracy, and the bourgeoisie, with a worldly perspective of society and civilisation. In the post-university tour of Europe’s major cultural centers, the cultural capital imparted through high-status institutions (schools, academies, and universities) was used to produce the ideal gentleman of the society in which he was raised was used to aid the lower social classes.

philosophy, history, drama, rhetoric, and poetry) of Western civilisation were all part of the European concept of high culture.

High art

A large part of high culture is devoted to the appreciation of what is often referred to as “high art.” This phrase is far larger than Arnold’s description, and it encompasses, in addition to literature, music, visual arts (particularly painting), and traditional forms of the performing arts, among other things (including somecinema). The ornamental arts are not typically regarded to be of great artistic quality. Cultural products that are most commonly regarded as belonging to high culture are most likely to have been created during periods of high civilization, during which a large, sophisticated, and financially prosperous urban-based society provides a coherent and conscious aesthetic framework, and an extensive milieu for training, as well as a large-scale source of materials and funding for work in the visual arts, among other things.

Such an atmosphere enables artists to develop their creative potential to the greatest extent feasible with the least amount of practical and technological restraints as possible, however many more may be discovered on the cultural and economic sides of things.

Although the Western idea of high culture is naturally focused on the Greco-Roman legacy, and its renewal from the Renaissance onward, similar conditions prevailed in other locations and at other times as well in the past.

Art music

Art music (also known as serious music, classical music, cultivated music, canonical music, or erudite music) is a broad word that refers to musical traditions that are characterized by sophisticated structural and theoretical concerns as well as a documented musical heritage. A frequent and well-defined musicological distinction is the concept of art music; for example, musicologist Philip Tagg refers to art music as one of three components of a “axiomatic triangle consisting of ‘folk,’ “art,” and “popular” musics, respectively.

In this context, the phrase “art music” is usually used as a contrast to the terms “popular music” and “traditional” or “folk music,” respectively.

Art film

Art cinema is the outcome of filmmaking that is often serious, independent, and aimed at a niche market rather than a broad commercial audience in order to achieve success. For film critics and film studies scholars, the term “art film” is defined in terms of a “.canon of films and those formal qualities that distinguish them from mainstream Hollywood films,” which includes, among other elements, the use of a social realism style, an emphasis on the authorial expressivity of the director or writer, and a focus on the thoughts and dreams of characters rather than the presentation of a clear, goal-driven story.

Art cinema, according to film researcher David Bordwell “is a genre in and of itself, with its own distinctive norms.”


Performers from theBallet Rambert, who are working under the auspices of the CEMA program, a government-sponsored initiative, present Peter and the Wolf at an aviation plant in the English Midlands during World War II. The word has always been vulnerable to accusations of forelitism, and many proponents of the notion have made significant efforts to promote high culture with a larger audience than the highly educated bourgeoisie who were meant to be its natural habitat. Beginning in the nineteenth century, there was a movement to create museums and music halls in order to provide the general population with access to great culture.

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With the expansion of access to university education, the effort spread there as well, and all aspects of high culture became the subject of academic study, which had not previously been the case, with the exception of the classics, until the late nineteenth century, until the late nineteenth century.

Europe, particularly, has been willing to finance great culture through the sponsorship of museums, opera and ballet companies, orchestres, cinema and public broadcasting stations such as the BBC Radio 3, ARTE, and other similar organizations, among other things.

This involves the funding of new works by composers, playwrights, and visual artists, among other things.

These can be considered to be part of the greater idea of official culture, despite the fact that they are not always meant for a broad audience.


In the fields of cultural studies, media studies, critical theory, sociology, and Postmodernism and Marxist philosophy, the relationships between high culture and popular culture are of particular interest. After being subjected to industrial replication, Walter Benjamin conducted an investigation into the relationships between the worth of the arts (high and mass) in his essay ” The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction ” (1936). A social control tool, according to the critical theorists Theodor W.

Ernest Renan, an orientalist philosopher, and Ernest Gellner, a rationalist philosopher, both believed that high culture was theoretically fundamental to the politics and ideology of nationalism, and that it was a necessary component of a healthy national identity.

The sociologist Pierre Bourdieu suggested in Distinction: A Social Critique of the Assessment of Taste (1979) that aesthetic taste (culture judgement) is largely influenced by one’s social class.

When engaging in such activities of aesthetic judgment, the ruling-class individual employs social rules that are unfamiliar to middle- and lower-class individuals engaged in the quest and practice of acts of taste.

See also

  1. Williams, Raymond.Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society(1983) Rev. Ed. p. 92
  2. Williams, Raymond.Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society(1983) Rev. Ed. p. 91–92
  3. Williams, Raymond.Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society(198 Gaye Tuchman and Nina E. Fortin are two of the most prominent women in the world (1989). “Chapter 4: The Novel of High Culture.” Victorian Novelists, Publishers, and Social Change (ISBN 978-0-415-03767-9)
  4. Edging Women Out: Victorian Novelists, Publishers, and Social Change Matthew Arnold is a writer who lives in the United Kingdom (1869). ‘Culture and Anarchy’ are two words that come to mind. The Cornhill Magazine is a monthly publication that is published in Cornhill, London.
  1. 167 in The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Volume 1 (1967)
  2. Steven Johnson, p. 167 in The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Volume 1 (1967). (6 April 2006). Everything that is bad for you is good for you: How popular culture is making us more intelligent. Book XIII of Gellius’ Attic Nights
  3. M. Tullius Cicero, De Officiiss, Book I: Moral Goodness, section 150
  4. “Jacques Maritain Center: Art and Scholasticism 4” at maritain.nd.edu
  5. “Jacques Maritain Center: Art and Scholasticism 4” at maritain.nd “Moral letters to Lucilius” by Seneca (via Wikisource)
  6. Dormer, Peter (ed. ), The Culture of Craft, 1997 (Manchester University Press), ISBN 0719046181, 9780719046186, google books
  7. A b “Music” in Encyclopedia Americana, reprint 1993, p. 647
  8. A b Denis Arnold, “Art Music, Art Song,” in The New Oxford Companion to Music, Volume 1: A-J (Ox Barbara Wilinsky’s Sure Seaters: The Emergence of Art House Cinema was published by Google Books in 2001 (Commerce and Mass Culture Series)
  9. Keith, Barry.Film Genres: From Iconography to Ideology was published by Google Books in 2001 (Commerce and Mass Culture Series)
  10. Wilinsky, Barbara. “Sure Seaters: The Emergence of Art House Cinema” (Google Books). Wallflower Press published their first book in 2007. Craig McGregor (page 1) is credited with the invention (1997). In Australia, there is a class system (1 ed.). Penguin Books Australia Ltd., Ringwood, Victoria, p. 301. p. 301. ISBN978-0-14-008227-2. [.] Élite culture is frequently used to maintain social control [.]


  • The complete text of Matthew Arnold’s Culture and Anarchy is available online. Anthony D Smith’s lecture paper, “Memory and Modernity: Reflections on Ernest Gellner’s Theory of Nationalism,” is available online.

high culture definition

HomeH Wordshigh cultural etymology

Definition of High Culture

It is cultural features (material and nonmaterial) that are regarded superior and often associated with and consumed by society’s elites: those who are well-educated or financially successful.

Examples of High Culture

Guide to Proper Pronunciation and Usage syllabification: a lot of cul ·ture Pronunciation in the audio format Phonetic Spelling is a type of spelling that uses sounds instead of letters.

  • American English is pronounced /hIE kUHl-chuhr/, whereas British English is pronounced /hIE kUHl-chuh/.

Phonetic Alphabet of the International Phonetic Alphabet

  • American English is pronounced /haklr/, whereas British English is pronounced /hakl/.

Usage Notes

  • High cultures in the plural
  • In order to achieve a refined understanding for high culture, education or training is often required. A highly trained work force is responsible for the production of high culture. The term “highbrow” is derived from the phrase “high culture.” Phrenology is a pseudoscience that said that personality was determined by the measuring of bumps on human skulls
  • High culture is contrasted with low culture
  • The term is also used to refer to a sort of culture.

Additional Information

  • Online Etymology Dictionary: etymonline.com
  • “height” and “culture” are derived from the same root word.

Related Video

  • Education, fine arts, low culture, material culture, and society are all topics covered.

Works Consulted

David Brinkerhoff, Lynn White, Suzanne Ortega, and Rose Weitz are among others who have contributed to this work. Essentials of Sociology, 8th edition, Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing. Brym, Robert J., and John Lie are co-authors of this work. Sociology: Your Compass for a New World was published in 2007. Wadsworth Publishing Company, Belmont, California, 3rd ed. Ferris, Kerry, and Jill Stein are among those who have spoken out in support of Jill Stein. 2010. In The Real World: An Introduction to Sociology, 2nd edition, New York: Norton & Company.

  • Introduction to Sociology, Second Edition, 2016.
  • John Macionis is the author of this work.
  • Sociology, 14th edition.
  • Pearson Education, Harlow, England, published Sociology: A Global Introduction, 4th edition in 2012.
  • (N.d.) Merriam-Collegiate Webster’s Dictionary ().
  • Oxford Dictionaries, Oxford, United Kingdom, n.d ().
  • Stolley’s The Fundamentals of Sociology was published in 2005.

Greenwood Press, Westport, Connecticut. Contributors to the Wikipedia project. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, (n.d.) Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. The Wikimedia Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing knowledge and understanding via the use of the internet ().

Citethe Definition of High Culture

ASA is an abbreviation for the American Sociological Association (5th edition) “high culture,” edited by Kenton Bell, published in 2013. In the Sociology Dictionary of Open Education. The date of retrieval is January 12, 2022. (). The American Psychological Association (6th edition) is a high-brow institution (2013). Among the entries in K. Bell’s (ed.) Open education sociology dictionary are: This information was obtained from the Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition) Kenton Bell is the editor of this volume.

  • In the Sociology Dictionary of Open Education.
  • .
  • Kenton Bell’s ed., published in 2013.
  • Web.

What does high culture mean?

  1. Term of high cultural eminence Artistically created entertainment and material objects associated with a society’s aristocracy or most learned people, which generally need a high level of knowledge to enjoy or the production of highly skilled labor to manufacture

Freebase(3.36 / 11 votes)Rate this definition:

  1. High level of culture High culture is a term that is now used in a variety of different ways in academic discourse, with the most common meaning being the collection of cultural products, primarily in the arts, that are held in the highest regard by a culture. High culture is a term that is now used in a variety of different ways in academic discourse. Aristocracy or intelligentsia, to name a few examples of elite cultures, but it may also be characterized as a storehouse of a vast cultural knowledge, which can serve as a means of transcending the class structure. It is opposed with low culture or popular culture, which can refer to the less well-educated, barbarians, Philistines, or the people, among other things.

How to pronounce high culture?

  1. Chaldean Numerology is a system of numbers that was developed by the Chaldeans. According to Chaldean Numerology, the numerical value of great culture is 7
  2. Pythagorean Numerology is a system of numbers that was developed by Pythagorean philosopher Pythagorean numerology When it comes to Pythagorean Numerology, great culture has the numerical value of 6

Examples of high culture in a Sentence

  1. High culture, according to Milan Kundera, is nothing more than a byproduct of that European perversion known as history, the obsession we have with moving forward, with considering the succession of generations as a relay race in which everyone surpasses his predecessor, only to be surpassed by his successor. Without this relay race known as history, there would be no European art, nor would there be the characteristics that distinguish it: a need for uniqueness and a yearning for change. Robespierre, Napoleon, Beethoven, Stalin, and Picasso are all participants in a relay race, and they all come from the same stadium in which the event is taking place.


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First and foremost, it is necessary to comprehend the notion of a subculture. It is a distinct culture shared by a smaller group of individuals who are also members of a broader culture that is known as a subculture. Many subcultures exist inside a broader culture, and an individual can be a member of multiple subcultures at the same time. In each subculture, there are different standards of behavior and practices that are not a part of the greater society in which it exists. Consider the Amish, bikers, hippies, or Whovians, to name a few groups.

High Culture vs. Popular Culture

Because there are so many different subcultures in the United States, it would be nearly impossible to name them all here. Furthermore, although some subcultures function essentially as an open group that everyone can join, others are only accessible to certain members of a community as a whole. In a civilization, the phrase high culture, for example, is used to define a subculture that is shared by the elite of the community. The term “culture” is generally associated with high culture; for example, someone who attends the ballet and acquires museum-quality artwork is sometimes referred to as “cultured.” Sociologists do not regard high culture to be superior to popular culture; rather, they believe it to be interestingly distinct from popular culture, which is the prevailing subculture shared by the majority of a society’s people.

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The aspects of popular culture are easily accessible and appealing to a wide range of people.

The majority of individuals in the United States do not find this very enticing.

These eateries are so popular that you can find them almost wherever you look.


Of fact, our entire country is not comprised solely of high culture and popular culture, as some would believe. As everyone knows, we have a large number of immigrants from a variety of nations who bring their cultures with them and help to make our community fairly diversified. Have you ever heard it said that America is akin to a melting pot of cultures? It is possible to characterize our national culture as a fusion of several civilizations. They are similar to soup elements that, once combined, make a significant contribution to the entire and are difficult to distinguish from other ingredients.

In contrast to the metaphor of the melting pot, multiculturalism encourages variety by recognizing and continuing to celebrate the existence of distinct cultures that coexist peacefully with one another.

Multiculturalism, as opposed to monoculture, emphasizes the preservation of distinct cultural traditions and practices rather than the creation of a single culture from elements of several civilizations.

High culture versus pop culture: which is best for engaging students?

“A high culture is the self-consciousness of a society”, Roger Scrutonwrotelast year in the Guardian. “It contains the works of art, literature, scholarship and philosophy that establish a shared frame of reference among educated people.” As a teacher, the last part of this statement interested me because one of the aims of schools should be nurturing “educated people”. Importantly for Scruton, an absence of “high culture is superseded by a culture of fake”. This ‘culture of fake’ consists of many things, including false ideologies, opinions and expertise, but unfortunately for me, Scruton did not really identify what a ‘low culture’ could be.

  • Pop culture would include just that; culture which is popular, easy to understand and entertaining to the majority of young people.
  • High culture, on the other hand, may include renaissance art, classical music and opera.
  • To help get my head round this, I turned to the philosophical debate between high order and low order pleasures to see if I am genuinely in the business of creating ‘educated people’ or simply dumbing down the curriculum.
  • For Jeremy Bentham the approach to engaging and enjoyable lessons could be through referencing pop culture and thereby making learning more pleasurable.
  • In contrast, Mill argues that higher order pleasures are superior.
  • Mill and Scruton cannot be dismissed as academic snobs, as there is plenty of research on thepositive effectsof high culture and what is often termed ‘cultural capital’ on educational achievement, which is even recognised, albeit critically, byMarxistsociologists.
  • I feel that the infusion of pop culture into staid RE lessons has brought the subject alive and made it more relevant.
  • Relating Christianity to pop culture may be more fruitful, especially as Christianity is evident in hip-hop (Kanye West’sJesus Walks, for example), novels, such as the Da Vinci Code, and followed by a host of celebrities.
  • My colleagues and I have planned lessons on heaven and hell that mixed clips from Tom and Jerry withGustave Doré ‘s illustrations of Dante’s Divine Comedy.
  • And, essentially, there are multiple references to the King James Bible.
  • There is arguably a creepingelitismamong some policy makers concerned with education, but it is worth remembering that “a shared frame of reference” often centres on what is popular, and accessing it, even celebrating it, is a good way to initially engage learners.

Andrew Jones is head of religious studies and sociology at a community school in Hertfordshire and an experienced GCSE examiner.

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  • After decades of gradual blurring, it is now impossible to distinguish between “high” culture of the elite and “low” culture of the people any more. Highculture is most usually used to refer to a collection of cultural items, primarily in the arts, that are held in the greatest regard by aculture. Rather of distinguishing between distinct cultures (rather than within a culture), Gellner utilized the notion of a high culture to contrast high civilizations with simpler, agricultural low cultures. However, the difficulty with this definition of popularculture is that much “highculture” (for example, television dramatizations of Jane Austen’s novels) is also considered “popular.” It is sometimes characterized as the culture that is “left over” once we have determined what high culture is
  • Discuss the respective roles of high culture and popular culture in contemporary society.

Culture and Society

  • In recent years, the divide between the “high” culture of the elite and the “low” culture of the masses has been increasingly blurred. When we talk about highculture, we’re talking about the collection of cultural items, primarily in the arts, that are held in the greatest regard by the culture. While Gellner’s idea of a high culture stretched beyond the arts, he also employed it to distinguish between various civilizations (rather than within a society), juxtaposing high cultures with simpler, agricultural lowcultures
  • And However, the difficulty with this definition of popularculture is that much “highculture” (for example, television dramatizations of Jane Austen’s novels) is also considered “popular. ” “Pop culture” may alternatively be described as the culture that is “left over” after we have chosen what high culture is. • Examine the social and cultural roles played by both high and popular culture

Building a Culture of High Performance

  • The definition of a high-performing culture is a results-driven company culture that is focused on increasing efficiency and achieving goals. When it comes to high-performing cultures, they are defined by their emphasis on developing and achieving goals. Creating high-performing teams is an effective method of achieving a high-performing culture. High-performance teams are a critical component of high-performance cultures, and they thrive in situations that are both inventive and empowering. Analysis of a high-performing culture’s major drivers and positive qualities is necessary.

Cultural Evolution

  • For example, the high culture of the elites is currently being contrasted with popular culture or pop culture. Because everyone is cultured, high culture no longer pertains to the concept of being cultured in the traditional meaning of the term. Highculturesimply refer to the artifacts, symbols, conventions, values, and beliefs of a certain group of people
  • Popularculturesimply refer to the same
  • And subculturesimply refer to the same. The outcome is a belief in cultural relativism, which argues that there are no “better” or “worse” cultures, but only various cultures
  • This is a result of the rejection of the cultured vs uncultured definition of culture.

Ceramics in Neolithic China

  • It was a Neolithic civilization that thrived abundantly along the middle Yellow River in China
  • It was also known as the Yangshaoculture. The Yangshaoculture, in contrast to the later Longshanculture, did not employ pottery wheels in its pottery-making. The culture flourished shortly after the Yangshaoculture, lasting around 3000 BCE to 2000 BCE. Among the notable characteristics of the Longshanculture was the high degree of competence demonstrated in pottery-making, which included the use of pottery wheels. When it came to the end of the era, the population shrank dramatically, which was mirrored by the elimination of high-quality black pottery discovered in ceremonial graves. In addition,

Considering Cultural and Interpersonal Differences

  • After gaining a grasp of the high value of diversity, managers must consider what distinguishes workers from one another. It is essential for managers to be culturally competent in order to flourish in today’s worldwide society. Cross-cultural competency, on the other hand, is an extremely ambiguous notion. Coming to terms with another culture necessitates the development of cultural self-awareness, which serves as a key standard. Being able to think about and comprehend various individuals and their distinct cultures is essential for developing a high degree of cultural awareness, as well as intercultural communication skills

Influenced by Overall Culture

  • There are a variety of advantages to having a strong and vibrant corporate culture, including the following: (3) Consistent, efficient staff performance
  • (4) Strong team cohesiveness
  • (5) High employee morale
  • And (6) A strong business alignment toward goal attainment. An organization’s organizationalculture can have a role in the survival or collapse of the company, with the persistent high performance of companies such as IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Procter & Gamble, and McDonald’s being viewed as a reflection of their organizationalcultures
  • Organizational leaders must also be cultural leaders, assisting in the transformation of the two old cultures into a single new culture. This is accomplished through cultural invention, which is followed by cultural preservation. The following are examples of cultural innovation:

How to Assess Culture

  • The way culture is judged, the advantages and disadvantages of diversity, and the method culture is transferred are all critical to management. In a similar vein, critics have observed that the fusion of a large number of distinct cultures has the effect of driving the inhabitants away from their ancestral homes. The first step in cultural evaluation is awareness. It is possible to integrate diverse cultures if we are able to perceive the various distinct parts of culture and cultural divergence, as well as the ways in which these differences influence our relationships. It is the tendency of a community or culture to pass on new information and establish new standards that is referred to as cultural transmission or cultural learning.

Culture-Specific Nuances of Decision-Making

  • A significant number of important connections may be detected and taken into consideration by integrating decision-making models with cultural aberrations. As a result, the decision-making process is intrinsically diverse among cultural groups, and comprehending negotiations, disputes, influences, and motives requires an awareness of these cross-cultural variances. The idea in this paradigm is that cultural preferences are pervasive and will manifest themselves in all situations
  • The antithesis is essentially a ‘counter-culture’ culture, which prescribes the opposite decision-making influence than the dominant culture. Ambiguity Tolerance- A high degree of tolerance for ambiguity or risk taking is referred to as “counter-culture” culture, which requires a high level of tolerance for going against the grain
  • For example,

Mechanisms of Cultural Change

  • The concept that culture may be conveyed from one person to another implies that civilizations, while bounded, can change
  • This is known as the transmission hypothesis. Prior to the invention of the birth control pill, women were at great risk of becoming pregnant as a result of their sexual activity. Cultures may alter fundamentally, notwithstanding their limitations
  • Environment, technical breakthroughs, and interaction with other cultures are all examples of factors that might contribute to cultural transformation. Unlike him, the other is a reflection of his biology and culture: he is human and belongs to a certain cultural group or subculture.
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The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia

This article contains information on The series on culture includes a segment on high culture. Photograph of the Parthenon’s western façade High cultureis a word that is today employed in a variety of different ways in academic discourse, with the most prevalent meaning being the collection of cultural artifacts, mostly in the arts, that a culture holds in the greatest regard. To put it another way, it is the culture of anelite groups such as the nobility or the intelligentsia. Low culture or popular culture is compared with, among other things, the less well-educated, barbarians, Philistines, or themasses, among other things.

Opera, for example, is regarded to be of considerable cultural significance.


  • 1A notion
  • 2A concept in flow
  • 3A concept in flux Economics of high and poor culture
  • 4 The Economics of High and Low Culture By means of a medium
  • The terms “high art” and “art music” are used interchangeably. 4.3 In literature, literary fiction is used, and 4.4 In cinema, art film is used.

5Promotion of good cultural standards 6Theoreticians 7As well as this,


A lengthier history exists in Continental Europe, but the term was brought into English mostly with the publication in 1869 of Culture and AnarchybyMatthew Arnold, although he prefers to use the word “culture” rather than “culture and anarchy.” Arnold defined culture as “the disinterested pursuit of man’s perfection” (Preface), and he is best known for writing that having culture meant knowing “the best that has been said and thought in the world”—a specifically literary definition that also encompassed philosophy, which is now less likely to be considered an essential component of High Culture, at least in the English-speaking world.

  • Arnold viewed high culture as a force for moral and political good, and this viewpoint is still widely held, though it is far from unchallenged, in many forms today.
  • High culture and popular culture were both seen as important components of a full culture in T.
  • Eliot’s Notes Towards the Definition of Culture (1948), which was a seminal book in the field of cultural theory.
  • When it comes to literature in America, Harold Bloom, like F.
  • Leavis before him, has adopted a more restrictive stance in a number of works—both, like Arnold, being primarily concerned with literature and daring to advocate vociferously the literature of the Western canon.
  • This tradition may be traced back to the Ancient Greeks in the Western world, and it was reinforced throughout the Renaissance and by Romanticism, albeit the latter also abolished the hierarchical classification of genres within the fine arts that had been created during the Renaissance.
  • China and the West made a particularly obvious contrast in inlandscape painting, where for centuries, hypothetical vistas created by the artist’s imagination were regarded as superior than works depicting an actual view of the landscape.
  • Western high culture may trace its historical roots back to the intellectual and artistic goals of ancient Greece and Rome, according to the Western tradition.
  • Later, particularly during the Renaissance, these principles were profoundly ingrained in the minds of cultural elites, as seen by works such as Baldasare Castiglione’s The Courtier, which demonstrates how knowledge of the classics became part of the aristocratic ideal.
  • For decades, immersion in high culture was regarded as a vital component of the appropriate education of “the gentleman,” and this ideal was imparted through elite schools and institutions throughout Europe and the United States, including the University of Oxford.

A concept in flux

Despite the fact that theater is now considered a highbrow art form, this was not the case until the eighteenth century. Shakespeare’s popularity shifted in this way, according to historian Lawrence Levine: “By the turn of the century, Shakespeare had been converted from a popular playwright whose dramas were the property of all those who flocked to see them, into a sacred author whose works had to be protected from ignorant audiences and overbearing actors who threatened the integrity of his creations.”

The economics of high and low culture

As Tyler Cowen notes out in his book, In Praise of Commercial Culture, commercial culture is a good thing “The division between high and low culture is supported by economic incentives. Capitalism encourages product diversity and provides many artists with the tools to create work that is not associated with the popular mainstream. The resultant divide between high culture and low culture reflects the complexity of modernity, rather than its corruption or disintegration, as has been suggested by some.

Genres that rely considerably on technology and resources, which I refer to as capital-intensive, are more likely to generate popular art than other types of artwork.

It seems likely that the movie spectacular with pricey special effects will have a pleasant conclusion.

By medium

Art of the highest caliber A large part of high culture is devoted to the admiration of what is referred to as “high art” or “fine art.” This phrase is far larger than Arnold’s description, and it encompasses, in addition to literature, music, visual arts (particularly painting), and traditional forms of the performing arts, among other things (including someart cinema). The ornamental arts are not typically regarded to be of great artistic quality. A large, sophisticated, and wealthy urban-based society provides a coherent and conscious aesthetic framework as well as a large-scale milieu for training, and in the case of the visual arts, a large-scale milieu for sourcing materials and financing work.

Such an atmosphere enables artists to develop their creative potential to the greatest extent feasible with the least amount of practical and technological restraints as possible.

As a result, a preliminary list of high civilizations, or cultures that produce High Art, can contain the following:

  • Ancient Greece
  • Ancient Rome
  • Ancient China
  • Ancient India
  • Byzantium
  • Ancient Egypt
  • Persia
  • A number of cultures in the Middle East at various times
  • Europe beginning in the 14th century
  • And a number of other cultures.

Art music

Art music (also known as serious music or erudite music) is a broad word that refers to musical traditions that are characterized by sophisticated structural and theoretical considerations as well as a documented musical heritage. The concept of “art music” is a common and well-defined musicological distinction, for example, as defined by musicologist Philip Taggas as one of a “axiomatic triangle consisting of ‘folk,’ ‘art,’ and ‘popular’ musics,” as opposed to “popular” musics. He goes on to explain that each of these three may be distinguished from the others based on a set of criteria.

In literature: literary fiction

See literary fiction vs. genre fiction for further information. It has been in general usage since approximately 1970, mostly to distinguish’serious’literature (that is, material that makes claims to literary worth) from the numerous other varieties of genre fiction and popular fiction that are available. In general, literary fiction is more concerned with style, psychological depth, and character development, whereas mainstream commercial fiction (the ‘pageturner’) is more concerned with narrative and plot development.

In film: art film

Seek for independent films vs blockbusters. The word “art film” is used in the broadest meaning when the venue of presentation, such as a repertory theater or a “arthouse cinema,” is used to designate which films are considered “art films” and which are not. The term “art film” can be applied to a wide range of films, including a 1960s Alfred Hitchcock picture, a 1970s experimental underground film, a 1980s European auteur film, and a 1990s United States “Independent” film, among others. Theorist Robert Stam suggested in 2000 that “art film” was a film genre defined by its artistic value, in the same way as film genres may be defined by elements of films such as their budgets (blockbustermovies or B-movies) or their star performers (B-movies) (Fred Astaire movies)

Promotion of high culture

The word has always been vulnerable to accusations of forelitism, and many proponents of the notion have made significant efforts to promote high culture with a larger audience than the highly educated bourgeoisie who were meant to be its natural habitat. Beginning in the nineteenth century, there was a movement to create museums and music halls in order to provide the general population with access to great culture. People like John Ruskin and Lord Reithof the BBC in Britain, Leon Trotsky and others in Communist Russia, and many more in America and throughout the western world have tried to broaden the appeal of high-culture components such as classical music, old master paintings, and literary classics.

Universityliberal artscourses continue to play a significant role in the development of the notion of high culture, despite the fact that the phrase “high culture” is no longer often used.

These programs are administered by organizations such as the Arts Council in the United Kingdom, and in other European nations, whole ministries are in charge of them.

Aside from public financing, there are other private charitable sources of funding available, which are particularly important in the United States, where the federally financed Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) also finances broadcasting.

These can be considered to be part of the greater idea of official culture, despite the fact that they are not always meant for a broad audience.


High culture and its relationship to popular culture have been a fundamental preoccupation of much theoretical work in cultural studies, critical theory, media studies, and sociology, as well as postmodernism and numerous strains of Marxist thought, to name a few. It was particularly important to the concerns ofWalter Benjamin, whose 1935-6 essayThe Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction, as well as the work of Theodor Adorno, was immensely influential. High culture has also been a key term in political thought on nationalism, particularly for writers such as Ernest Renan and Ernest Gellner, who considered it as a vital component of a strong national identity that should be promoted.

Another much broader, class-based definition of high culture, or “taste,” as defined by Pierre Bourdieu’s book: La Distinction (English translation: Distinction: A Social Critique of the Judgement of Taste) (1979) has had an impact on sociology.

This partially reflects a French, or Mediterranean, sense of the word, which differs from the more serious-minded Anglo-German conception of Arnold, Benjamin, Leavis, or Bloom, who were all educated in the United Kingdom.

See also

  • Classical studies
  • Dead white guys
  • Difficult
  • Higher education
  • Highbrow
  • Dead white males
  • The terms low culture, mass culture, nobrow culture, popular culture, and working class culture are all used interchangeably.

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