Wednesday, August 17, 2005
Ricefield in Residential Area of Japan
This is reminds me of the discussion by the cultural psychologist and anthropologist Richard Schweder arguing the extent of the impact of culture upon the way that people percieve the world.
The objectivist Western tradition has been more inclined to claim, with Gertrude Stien, that "A rose is a rose is a rose". But Richard Schweder (Shweder & LeVine, 1984) points out that to a rice farmer who has roses growing in her rice paddy, a rose is no more than a weed that she wants to get rid of.
While we (non-rice farmers) may see roses as something beautiful, desirable and expensive, or an expression of love in a group with chocolates and kisses, a rice farm may see a rose as simply a nuisance in a group with vermin, parasites and athlete's foot.
Shweder, R. A., & LeVine, R. A. (Eds.). (1984). Culture Theory: Essays on Mind, Self and Emotion. Cambridge University Press.
This blog represents the opinions of the author, Timothy Takemoto, and not the opinions of his employer.