Cultural Baseline – The State of a Culture Before it Comes into Contact with Another Culture

In anthropology, the cultural baseline is the state of two cultures before they come into contact with one another. It is used as a reference point to measure the changes that occur in a culture after it has been exposed to the other culture.

The cultural baseline can be thought of as the starting point from which all other changes are measured. It is useful in order to identify and record the impact of acculturation, which is the process by which a culture is changed by contact with another culture. It can also be used to study the effects of cultural diffusion, which is the spread of cultural elements from one group to another.

While the concept of a cultural baseline is useful, it is important to note that it is not possible to identify the point at which a culture starts to change through contact with other cultures, because this is happening continuously. Additionally, the changes that occur as a result of acculturation and cultural diffusion are often subtle and gradual, making it difficult to identify the point at which they began.

Related Terms:

Culture: The social, religious, linguistic, and aesthetic traditions shared by a group of people.

Anthropology: The study of human societies and cultures.

Contact Zone: A space where two cultures come into contact with one another.

Cultural Diffusion: The spread of cultural ideas and practices from one group to another.

Acculturation: The process by which a person or group adopts the customs and beliefs of another culture.

Glossary Terms starting with C

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