Definition Of Civilization

669 Words3 Pages
Civilization has been defined in various ways by sociologists and anthropologists. English anthropologist Edward Burnett Tylor defines civilization as "the total social heredity of mankind.” From his point of view, civilization is the sum of human’s culture and knowledge. It refers to the society as a whole. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, “civilization is the society, culture, and way of life of a particular area.” John K. Hord, an American historian, says that “Civilization is the presence of a formal knowledge system, together with the people subscribing to it.” According to these three definitions, civilization is the sum of the knowledge, discoveries and cultures of a society. There are a great amount of civilizations around the world. The Egyptian’s is one of the oldest. The Egyptian civilization was born in the third millennium before Christ and shone during 200 years. This civilization developed writing (with the hieroglyphs), painting and sculpture. She is characterized by a worship of the gods and the deaths. So, the most important constructions are graves, mastabas and pyramids. Civilization has often been used as a synonym of another completely different word: the word culture. Culture and civilization were and are still a source of confusion for many. However, the meaning of these two words is different. Mac Iver, a Scottish sociologist, is of the view that “Culture is the expression of our nature in our modes of living, our thinking, our literature and our religion.” From his sociologist point of view, culture show acquired behaviors by members of a given society. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, “culture is the beliefs, customs and arts of a particular society, group, place or time.” For e... ... middle of paper ... smaller than a civilization. Second, a culture can exist and grow without being part of a civilization, whereas a civilization can never exist without a culture. Third, a culture can be measured whereas a civilization cannot. Fourth, a culture cannot be given to other whereas a civilization can. Fifth, a culture cannot be a medium for civilization whereas civilization can become a medium for culture. A civilization cannot be defined as primitive or advanced. Indeed, there is nothing that allows us to compare two of them. Each civilization brings its own history, discoveries and knowledge. The same thing is valid for culture. There is no such thing as a good or bad culture. Each one brings inestimable social wealth. To say that a culture or a civilization is advanced, we have to compare to something, yet, it is impossible to compare two cultures or civilizations.

More about Definition Of Civilization

Open Document