Material culture refers to the objects and things that are distinctive of a human cultural group. For archaeology and anthropology, this has included clothes, pots, weapons, tools, and jewelry as well as houses and boats. All these things are human made, and many of them are decorated as well as serving a practical function; their design is often what makes them distinctive of a particular people at a particular time. Once such things are no longer made within the household but are bought and sold within a commodity market, the stuff of material culture becomes the stuff of consumer culture. In late modern society, the objects of material culture are made industrially and bought through shops and other outlets before they are consumed.

Understanding Culture through ...

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