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The Commodification of Culture


 <nemnk^ can be expressed in tangible or intangible ways, giving rise to the distinction between material culture and nonmaterial culture. Cultural geography is the branch of human geography that studies the impact of human beliefs and activities on other groups and the environment.  Commodification converts an object, a concept, product, or procedure formerly not available for purchase into a good or service that can be bought or sold. Commodification is related to consumption, which is encouraged by advertising. As noted in the discussion of diamonds, advertising can even influence cultural practices. In the case of the haka, shown here, advertising helped commodify an aspect of Maori nonmaterial culture and demonstrates the contested nature of culture.

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Cultural Geographies of Local Knowledge 50

 Local knowledge encompasses the collective knowledge of a community that derives from the everyday activities of its members. In every community there are multiple repositories of local knowledge. These are the individuals and groups who retain specialized knowledge for different activities.  Ablmhkb\Zeer%>nkhi^Zgob^plh_ghg&>nkhi^ZglZg]^li^cially colonized peoples were influenced by the rationality doctrine and diffusionism.  Traditional medicine is a kind of local knowledge that is often contrasted with Western, or allopathic, ways of practicing medicine. Traditional medicine is widely practiced around the world, and some facets of it, such as acupuncture (see photo), have become more mainstream and globalized.

The diffusion of >Vի՘ÌÕÀiÊ UÊ ˆ}ÕÀiÊÓ°£Ó

 Eh\Zedghpe^]`^h_m^gk^o^ZelZgbgmbfZm^ZpZk^g^llZg] understanding of the environment. A more complete understanding of qanats, vernacular architecture, and mystical ecologies such as feng shui demands an awareness of local knowledge and the fact that gender differences can play a major role in shaping the specific knowledge an individual possesses.  Bm\ZgZelh[^lZb]maZmma^heritage industry involves the commodification of the past. The particularism of heritage means that it is always characterized by dissonance. The identification of world (or global) heritage sites has been both celebrated and criticized.

Key Terms ●

acupuncture 52 allopathic medicine 52 Americanization 42 capital 36 cartel 45 commodification 45 conflict diamonds 47 consumption 45 cultural geography 44 diffusionism 51 dissonance 48 feng shui 55

globalization 36 glocalization 43 haka 47 heritage 48 heritage industry 48 holistic approach 52 horizontal expansion 36 local culture 51 local knowledge 51 material culture 44 multinational corporation (MNC) 37 mystical ecology 55

foreign direct investment (FDI) 37

neolocalism 43

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60 CHAPTER 2 Globalization and Cultural Geography

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nonmaterial culture 44 personal approach 52 placelessness 42 popular culture 41 qanat 55 rationality doctrine 51 social capital 51 sustainable development 51 traditional medicine 51 vernacular architecture 55 vertical expansion 36 world (or global) heritage 48

Greiner visualizing human geography chapters 2-5  

Chapters for Manual High School