Western Shoshone Land Rights Summary

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“Our Land, Our Life: the Struggle for Western Shoshone Land Rights,” demonstrates a ton of historic examples of both material and symbolic culture. The video explained material culture to me as a cultural connection with an materialistic object. An example of materialistic culture is the land of the Shoshones. The Shoshones are Native Americans that have property of many acres of land, as well as the animals that go along with the property. When the US government took away some of the horses and cows from the indigenous people, the Shoshones were very angry and upset. The US government also takes away water resources from the Shoshones to produce gold. The rich and natural land is one of the only things left in the world that is “God given…show more content…
Symbolic culture is about a spiritual connection, with nothing physically materialistic. Symbolic culture to the Shoshones is taking care of the land, and passing it to the next generation. The land in which the Shoshones live in, is like a mother to them. The Shoshones are constantly trying to preserve and care for the land, as well as passing the traditions on to the future Shoshones. Next is cultural diffusion, which is when cultural traditions are continued and spread apart from a central point. The traits of a culture can spread everywhere. An example of cultural diffusion is people taking their shoes off before entering a house, an Asian tradition has diffused all over the world. The final term is global culture, which is very similar to cultural diffusion. Global culture means spreading traditions and culture globally across the world. Global culture is popularly spread through multimedia such as: TV, movies, radio, and much…show more content…
Materialistic is different in that, economically you cannot put a price on culture and traditions. In the Article, the US states that they compensated over a thousand Shoshones, but that is not what material culture is about. The Shoshones see the animals and land as more than just objects, they want to care and nurture what God has given them. Just because the United States paid for what they took, does not mean it belongs to them, since the Shoshones never even put a price tag on what was taken. People cannot go around taking what they want, because they have more money and power. The United States hurt the Shoshones in both material and symbolic cultures. Symbolically, the Shoshones were hurt when the United States did allow them to follow their traditions. Symbolic culture is not about a physical item or object, so the Shoshones were hurt since they could not live their way of life. Basically an entire cultural tribe’s roles in life were taken away from them by the government, and they just received money in return. The Shoshones were left with less purpose in life, and a piece of their culture was taken from them, making the indigenous people very angry. I believe that materialistic culture has more power in the people, and hopefully others will be able to see the harsh reality of the Shoshones. I imagine that material

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