Re: Abnormal behaviour
Read, Dwight ANTHRO (Read@ANTHRO.SSCNET.UCLA.EDU)
Tue, 9 May 1995 02:59:00 PDT
"Simply put, something is "abnormal" is it is "away from the normal." It does
not matter whether there is an objective normal or not for this discussion.
For the question is simply if "culture" in and of itself causes "abnormal
behaviour." Id est, does a prevailing, dominating culture by its very
presence cause some individuals to take actions contrary to that culture."
I'm not sure that this clarifies the original question. If someone falls
into the tail-end of a normal (statistically speaking!) distribution is that
person "abnormal" ? If so, "abnormality" is by definition. Or is the
critical issue: Does person X act contrary to normative behavior (specified
e.g., in the form of cultural rules, not statistical averages)? Since rules,
by their nature, presumbably specify behavior that would NOT necessarily
occur without the rule, it seems reasonable to assume that there will be
individuals who will not act according to the rule. In such case did the
culture CAUSE the individual to "take actions contrary to that culture"? It
all sounds very murky to me.