An Analysis of the Situation of Cultural Behaviours in Rural Areas of Iran



Introduction: Culture as an accepted value, life style, customs and rituals of a society and acceptable norms of communities have always been the creators of the identity and arts as a guarantor of survival and durability of the societies. The economic-orientation of development and developmental perspectives in recent decades are among the most shortcomings and deficiencies of western development paradigms. This caused the negligence from indigenous and apparently irrational (from occidental point of view) elements in the paradigms of development. Hence, developmental theories and consequently local communities, especially in developing countries, deprived from the opportunities, contribution, roles and effects of local cultures and worthwhile historical expereinces after war. In addition to the guarantee of the community participation in developmental processes and so the success of theme, the culture-orientation of development paradigms is also the most assured way to successful encountering the globalization process in the information era. The wide spread of cultural contexts and scarce of valid and codified data sources are the main difficulties of any study in this area, especially in rural communities.

Methodology: This paper has been derived from a study with the aim of analyzing the cultural behaviors in rural regions in Iran. Thus, the main purpose of the study is to represent a spatial analysis of inequalities as well as homogenities of Iranian rural areas in cultural contexts, in a provincial scale. For this purpose, the categorization and cultural taxation of rural areas was done in addition to the cultural rankings of the areas. The needed data have been extracted from the 29 volumes of the national research project reports entitled, "Iranian cultural behaviors in rural areas" as unique data source in this field. With applying a detailed multi-stage processing procedure on the initial gathered data, by using some multi criteria analysis (MCA) methods, 20 composed secondaries as well as 3 final indicators were obtained as the main indicators of the study. These indicators have been measured in the fields such as "cultural activities", "availability to the cultural commodities" and "consumption of the cultural commodities" contexts. Description of these 23 variables and explanation of the 28 provinces rural areas situations for them was accomplished by analyzing the of taxation in order to ranking and determining the optimality degrees of the study areas in above 3 major fields. Results showed an undesirable situation of cultural consumption compared to the available cultural commodities and generally the low and unfavorable levels of cultural productivity in rural areas, although the availabilities have not gat a suitable situation as well.

Results: Among the cultural activities, the social affaires with the mean of 29.08 percent is in the best situation. The best situation in the field of availabilities and cultural commodities belongs to the multi media furnitures such as tape and video with the mean of 52.21 percent. Listen to the radio with the mean 16.46 percent have also the best situation in the field of cultural consumption. Artistic activities (with the mean of 5.07 percent), newspaper and magazine availabilities (with the mean of 6.43 percent) and watching movies and theaters (with the mean of 1.95 percent) have respectively the less situations in aforesaid 3 cultural behaviours. Attention to these results reveals that, although the mean of availabilities is less than 30 percent, nevertheless the highest rate of cultural consumption as well as the mean of cultural activities are less than the lowest rate of availabilities. This means that the cultural prodactivity in rural areas is mach lesser than the cultural possibilities and availabilities. The widest range, or in the other word, the most cutural differentoations belong to the availabilities and cultural commodities. Contrarily, the cultural consumptions have had the most similarities among the rural areas. Religious affairs have had the most attendance in the field of cultural activities and the artistic activities have received the less ones. The less cultural consumption have been pertained to movie and theater and the most consumption have also been pertained to the radio and television. This happened in a context which the most available cultural commodities are tape and video. A noticoable matter in the context of artistic activities is that the areas with the weakest cultural situations, based on the rankings at the following, such as the Sistan & Baluchestan, Kermanshah, Chahar Mahal & Bakhtiari, Kohgiluyeh & Boyer-Ahmad, Lorestan and Hormozgan provinces have also had the highest ranks in local celebrations and ceremonies among the cultural activities. The first ans the last orders in both cultural consumptions and availabilities are the same and belong to the Tehran and Sistan & Baluchestan rural areas respectively. Distaces of these two provinces from the other ones are so much that there specified as dissimilar groups at the beginning of the taxation algorithm. The cultural clustering of rural areas was also done by using the cluster analysis in three Categories (weak, moderate and almost good) with 5, 16 and 7 provinces respectively. The weak class or category contains the rural areas of Sistan & Baluchestan, Kurdestan, Qom, Ardebil and Kermanshah provinces. Tehran, Isfahan, Semnan, Bushehr, Mazandaran, Zanjan and Yazd are also the almost good group rural areas. The other remained provinces rural areas stand the moderate group.
Conclusion: Based on the ranking orders and clustering results, although the orders in each of 3 above fields are different, but the most undesirable situations belongs always to the frontier localities such as Kordestan and Sistan provinces, which must be considered as a deliberative and considerable matter.