The foremost requirement for assimilation into American society, authorities felt, was mastery of the English language. Commissioner of Indian Affairs T.J. Morgan described English as Such chauvinism did not allow for bilingualism in the boarding schools. Students were prohibited from speaking their native languages and those caught "speaking Indian" were severely punished. Later, many former students regretted that they lost the ability to speak their native language fluently because of the years they spent in boarding school.
Another important component of the government policy for "civilizing" the Indians was to teach farming techniques. Although few reservations in the Pacific Northwest had either fertile land or a climate conducive to agriculture, nonetheless it was felt that farming was the proper occupation for American citizens. So boys learned how to milk cows, grow vegetables, repair tools, etc. and even had lessons on the various types of plows. ()
Origin of cultureMiddle English cultivation from Old French from Latin cultūra from cultus past participle of colere ; see cultivate .
There is a unique tie between culture and language. The languages we speak provide us with the words and concepts to describe the world around us, allowing us to verbalize certain values easily. Anything we as a cultural group value will surely have a known and easily understandable term. The English word “privacy” and the Chinese word “guanxi” both have clear and strong meanings in their respective languages, but are not necessarily found in all other languages. Being a native speaker of our mother tongue brings with it more than just the ability to communicate, it brings with it the ability to understand why someone thinks and acts as they do.
Even within a language, certain terms may only be used by certain groups and this jargon or vernacular can quickly reflect what the group values. If you regularly use the term “return on investment”, this says a great deal about what you value in your role at an organization. Similarly, if you immediately understand the complexities and nuances of the term “sustainable development," then you too belong to a group of people who undoubtedly share a culture and worldview.
If you ask me personally for advice on how to getstarted, I will tell you these exact same things, because I don't haveany magic shortcuts for you. I will also mentally write you off as aprobable loser - because if you lacked the stamina to read this FAQand the intelligence to understand from it that , you'rehopeless.
Sociologists, who study networks like those of the hackerculture under the general rubric of "invisible colleges", have notedthat one characteristic of such networks is that they have gatekeepers— core members with the social authority to endorse new membersinto the network. Because the "invisible college" that is hackerculture is a loose and informal one, the role of gatekeeper isinformal too. But one thing that all hackers understand in theirbones is that not every hacker is a gatekeeper. Gatekeepers have tohave a certain degree of seniority and accomplishment before they canbestow the title. How much is hard to quantify, but every hacker knowsit when they see it.
If you can manage to concentrate enough on hacking to be good at itand still have a life, that's fine. This is a lot easier today thanit was when I was a newbie in the 1970s; mainstream culture is muchfriendlier to techno-nerds now. There are even growing numbers ofpeople who realize that hackers are often high-quality lover andspouse material.
For this reason, many hackers have adopted the label‘geek’ as a badge of pride — it's a way of declaringtheir independence from normal social expectations (as well as afondness for other things like science fiction and strategy games thatoften go with being a hacker). The term 'nerd' used to be used thisway back in the 1990s, back when 'nerd' was a mild pejorative and'geek' a rather harsher one; sometime after 2000 they switched places,at least in U.S. popular culture, and there is now even a significantgeek-pride culture among people who aren't techies.
The hacker culture (and the engineering development of theInternet, for that matter) is run by volunteers. There's a lot ofnecessary but unglamorous work that needs done to keep itgoing — administering mailing lists, moderating newsgroups,maintaining large software archive sites, developing RFCs and othertechnical standards.
Back around 1991 I learned that many hackers who have English asa second language use it in technical discussions even when they sharea birth tongue; it was reported to me at the time that English has aricher technical vocabulary than any other language and is thereforesimply a better tool for the job. For similar reasons, translationsof technical books written in English are often unsatisfactory (whenthey get done at all).
As an American and native English-speaker myself, I havepreviously been reluctant to suggest this, lest it be taken as a sortof cultural imperialism. But several native speakers of otherlanguages have urged me to point out that English is the workinglanguage of the hacker culture and the Internet, and that you will need to know it to function in the hacker community.
Carolyn J. Marr is an anthropologist and photographs librarian at the Museum of History and Industry in Seattle, Washington. She has worked with the Chehalis, Suquamish, Tulalip and Makah Tribes on projects relating to photographs and oral history as well as material culture, especially basketry and textiles. Several exhibits have resulted from her work, including one on the boarding school experience in western Washington. Publications include, "Portrait in Time: Photographs of the Makah by Samuel G. Morse, 1897-1903," and numerous articles in Pacific Northwest Quarterly, Columbia Magazine and other journals.