oral cultures

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1. Societies based on orality, the term being typically applied to those having no written literature and in which intergenerational cultural transmission of values, attitudes, and beliefs is by word of mouth (including through myths). Theorists such as McLuhan and Ong have stressed fundamental differences between oral and literate cultures (see great divide theories), including different patterns of thought. Critics stressing social and ideological factors argue that such views are a form of media determinism.

2. Subcultures within literate societies which place greater emphasis on the effective use of the speech (and often singing) than on literacy (as opposed to literary cultures).

Subjects: Media Studies.

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