Samples from English Cultures - Vol. 1

Samples from English Cultures - Vol. 1

Samples from English Cultures - Vol. 1

Samples from English Cultures - Vol. 1

Excerpt

It was my purpose, when I started to write this book, to compare and contrast current patterns of living in England, in such a way that similarities and differences might offer themselves for further investigation or for incorporation into theory. At the time, it seemed to me that English urban sociology and social psychology were becoming increasingly handicapped by the lack of attention given to differences between different geographical regions and different social classes. This lack is now being supplied by a number of social scientists, and the present work is intended to further the same purpose.

In practice, I found it difficult to strike a correct balance between fact and theory, and difficult also to select, from the heap of unorganized data, those facts which would be most representative of the ways of life under consideration. In the early stages of the writing, I had the title Patterns of English Culture in mind, to point the resemblance of this book, in aspiration at least, to Ruth Benedict’s classic Patterns of Culture. It soon became clear, however, that this was altogether too ambitious a project. The sub-cultures with which I was concerned shared too many culture traits and were not static enough to merit the title Pattern in the sense in which Benedict used the word. Moreover, in any single one of the sub-cultures under consideration, too many of the data were missing which would be needed to display a pattern convincingly, or perhaps I was too close to them to be able to perceive it.

Thus it was that I came to the present title, which stands for a work less ambitious in scope. I have taken a sample here and there from the total array of culture traits displayed by present-day English society. The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary defines a sample as a relatively small quantity of material or an individual object from which the quality of the mass, group, species,

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.