內容簡介 Alfred Louis Kroeber offers an all-embracing account of human culture, looking at its historical definitions, contemporary definitions, and its role as a foundation for all of the social sciences.A work striking for its thoroughness, Culture: A Critical Review begins by examining the origins of the term Culture, and how it came to be associated with civilization and social change. The appearance of the word in intellectual writings, such as those of Kant and Hegel, increased through the 19th century. Interpretations of the word - as the later section on definitions shows - persisted in varying widely, with scholars differing in what they consider part of a given country's culture. Some constructed strict definitions involving things like a country's symbols, morality, festivals, and heritage while others opted to apply the term more generally or loosely.This conceptual problem serves as an overarching theme, its difficulty apparent in the many contrasting views the author quotes. Nevertheless by listing and commenting on these numerous ideas, Kroeber demonstrates the broadness of culture; its influence ranging into disciplines such as psychology, history, linguistics, medicine and sociology. The author himself considers this study as anthropology; a tracing of how culture emerged from occasional academic mentions and allusions into a dominant cluster of ideas, transcending many disciplines and assuming place in popular consciousness.