Sociocybernetic Understandings of Cultural Transmissions and Transformations

Tuesday, 17 July 2018: 15:30
Oral Presentation
Bernard SCOTT, International Center for Sociocybernetics Studies, Bonn, Germany, International Center for Sociocybernetic Studies, Germany
This paper uses sociocybernetic concepts to address issues concerning cultural transformations and transformations. Here, by “culture” is meant the attitudes and values, often tacit, of a particular collective or community as expressed in individual behaviours, interactions and productions of “artefacts” in the broadest sense (for example, encompassing spoken and written texts and other symbolic forms and found or constructed concrete objects) It is intended to be distinguished from “social institutions” that are explicitly constructed to guide and control said behaviours and interactions.

Topics addressed include:

  • Conceptions and definitions of “culture”.
  • Relations between culture and “personality” and other individual differences.
  • Interactions between different cultures, including studies and commentaries on what some authorities refer to as the “clash of civilisations” and others as “intercultural conversations”.
  • Culture and exposure and susceptibility to “counterknowledge” (pseudohistory, pseudoscience, pseudomedicine).
  • Attempts by self and others to change culturally transmitted attitudes and behaviour (for example: counterterrorism, rehabilitation of criminals, alienation and problems of mental health).
  • Reference to case studies of cultural transmissions and transformations, including ‘gender politics’ and ‘spiritual politics’ and the role of ‘power’.
  • Reflections on and critical appraisals of the culture of the sociocybernetics community itself and its similarities and differences with other disciplinary groupings and “communities of practice”.