History of Culture

The history of culture can be described as the collective and set patterns of people and their activities in a specific or social group. These are the symbolic structures that give such activity significance to the group. The different types of cultural elements are customs, laws, popular styles, social standards, and traditions.

The history of culture can be treated as an academic discipline as well as a subject matter.


History of culture, or cultural history, as it is referred to as a discipline since the 1970s looks at the traditions of popular culture and historical experiences of a social group through the approaches of anthropology and history combined together. The records of the past and the chronicles offering an extensive narrative description are studied along with customs, and arts of a group of people. However, the area of history of culture is magnanimously vast, encompassing the continuum of events occurring in succession from the ancient days to the present era, and sometimes even penetrating the future pertaining to a culture.


The History of Culture does record the events of the past and interpret them in the perspective of the social, cultural, and political milieu of a social group.
Jacob Burckhardt can be regarded as the founder of the history of culture as a discipline. The history of culture aims at studying the records of the ancient societies to their progress to modern days with the distinctive ways of living of the people under that particular social group as reflected by their diverse cultural activities, like, ceremony, class in practices, and the interaction with locales.

Academic Discipline

The study of History of Culture as an academic discipline is very popular among the scholars. It involves the study of:

  • Political economy
  • Communication,
  • Sociology
  • Social theory
  • Literary theory
  • Media theory
  • Film/video studies
  • Cultural anthropology
  • Philosophy
  • Museum studies
  • Art history/criticism to study culture in various societies.

The researchers often concentrate on how specific phenomena related to culture affects ideology, nationality, ethnicity, social class, and/or gender.

Culture Article Archive