As we can observe daily uses of concepts like race, culture, or civilization through newspapers, magazines, TV shows, etc. The need of defining them occurs repeatedly. What then are we talking about with respect to the concept of culture? Is it a political, artistic, or even ethnic pattern of values? What then is a race? Can we define a race biologically, genetically, culturally, or ethnically? Problems are getting worse when these questions are asked since these concepts are used with rough definitions. Considering this issue, we will focus on the subject of culture, as we may find it at the root of the two other concepts of race and, most importantly, civilization.
[...] We can observe, through history, the result of the consideration of civilization in a linear time; the conclusion is almost easy: colonisation, always with good reasons (democracy among other things A barbarian would always remain a kind of barbarian as he came too late in the race, progress always running on. The most perfect example of that is the description made by Walter Benjamin of the notion of Progress through History. And even if (through the modern liberal way of thinking) former barbarians are nowadays considered members of a civilization, they always remain and would never become leading the way to cultural racism. [...]
[...] Can civilization be criticized in a reliable way? The answer is positive. It has therefore an importance nowadays (in a specific way) for the sake of humanity, considering the dead-end humanity has reached at the dawn of the 21st century in terms of life expectancy for mankind itself and the earth. Merleau-Ponty, La structure du comportement, P.U.F p.1. This definition is shared by Descartes and Kant among other authors. Zerzan, Future Primitive, Autonomedia p Ibid. Zerzan, Future Primitive, Autonomedia p.141. [...]
[...] This storm is what we call progress." W. Benjamin, Theses on the Philosophy of History Philip Atkinson, A theory of civilization Sigmund Freud, Civilization and Its Discontents in Against Civilization (enlarged edition) Feral House editions. Ibid. p.108. last but one of these occasions was when the progress of voyages of discovery led to contact with primitive peoples and races. In consequence of insufficient observation and a mistaken view of their manners and customs, they appeared to Europeans to be leading a simple, happy life with few wants, a life such as was unattainable by their visitors with their superior civilization”. [...]
[...] More than the difference between and the concept of civilization integrates the necessary conceptions of progress and of culture, especially through the dominance over the forces of nature. The civilized man is, by essence, the man who no longer lives in a tribal and nomadic system, and has mastered the nature to the point he does not have to fear it (to a certain extend, hazards always remain). Whence can we consider that civilization appeared (even if it was not considered so at the time)? [...]
[...] First, the three concepts of culture, civilization and race are almost linked and cannot be considered separated from each other. Culture is needed to define civilization and how could we consider a race (nowadays) without the two other notions of both culture and civilization? Moreover, these three concepts know a pyramidal structure in their organisation and links between each others. If race and culture are two different faces of the same coin, civilization includes both and dominates them. The question then is to not stay in a particular period of time for the appreciation of these concepts. [...]
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