Culture is socially developed

Culture is socially developed as a result of human contact. A group of individuals who are aware of one another’s attitudes, values, and knowledge share cultural understanding as well as ideas. Simmel argues that social changes and other symbolic parts of society, such as ideas and signs, exist independently of an individual. As a result, he makes a distinction between subjective and objective culture.
Subjective culture, on the other hand, might be defined as the capacity to accept, use, and feel culture in the way we connect with and express culture. An excellent illustration of subjective culture is the donning of ceremonial attire that is unique to many cultural holidays. On the other hand, objective culture is made up of cultural elements created by individuals and groups which later become separated from the culture taking on a life of its own (Ritzer & Stepnisky, 2017). The items of the objective culture are reified as discrete objects which exist separately and objectively from the group and culture that formed it. One does not have to be part of the culture to take part in the objective culture spawning from it.
According to Simmel’s theory, money impacts lifestyles by growing the objective culture at the expense of the individual culture. According to the theory, individuals create value through developing objects, distancing themselves from the objects and later trying to overcome the distance (Hart, 2015).Additionally, the theory maintains that the objects too close or too far away to be achieved are valueless. The valuable ones are those not too far neither too close to be attained. The theory also argues that the significance of people declines as money transactions becomes the central component of the society.
Simmel also argues that money grows the objective as monetary transactions replaced traditional forms of barter (Dodd, 2016). This has led to significant changes when it comes to the forms of interactions between the social actors. Money is now impersonal in ways that objects of barter such as collected shells and crafted gongs do not exist. This means that money helps in promoting rational calculation in human affairs while increasing rationalization a major element of the modern society. Being the prevalent link between individuals, money substitutes personal ties that are fixed in diffuse feelings by the impersonal relationships limited to certain purposes.
Since money restricts a transaction to the purpose at hand, it fosters social differentiation as well as personal freedom. Through this, it displaces natural groupings through voluntary associations designed for specific rational purposes. When cash nexus penetrates, it reduces the bonds based on kinship or royalty ties (Herrmann-Pillath, 2014).This means that money symbolizes the modern spirit of calculability, rationality as well as impersonality which explains why Simmel’s theory maintains that money impacts lifestyles by increasing the objective culture at the expense of individual culture.
When it comes to the relationship between money and value, Simmel argues that even if values have an objective side to them, it is only through money that subjective values become objective. Additionally, values can be attached to one and the same object and are also closely connected to objective value. However, it is only in money that subjective values find the full objective expression. Money is, therefore, a form of objectified articulation of exchange relationships as when separated from other goods it becomes the transformer of goods into commodities.
Simmel also indicates that money frees individuals as its obligation is related to the product of labor but not to the whole individual. This means that individuals can be measured in an absolute as well as objective way following the monetary value that entering a relationship with them represents.
Money puts both the relationship as well as the actions of men outside of men as human objects like intellectual life. This means that it shifts from cultural subjectivity into the sphere of objectivity which it only reflects. This leads to the relationship of superiority where the one with money in a society is superior to the one with a commodity (Simmel, 2004).
When it comes to fashion as an objective culture, Simmel maintains that fashion is among the pursuits of absolute values which can never be attained. However, money ensures that fashion is a race where an individual’s measure is how far ahead one is of everyone else within the society. The constant parade of fashion takes away the individual style of meaning as society members understand that the fashion will be old and obsolete in future (Ritzer & Stepnisky, 2017). Therefore, money grows the objective culture at the expense of individual culture.
Negative Consequence Of Money As End It Itself
Moreover, Simmel explains the disadvantages of a society where money becomes an end in itself. One of the major disadvantages is an increase in cynicism. Cynicism can be defined as the inclination believes that community members are only motivated purely by self-interest.
The second disadvantage is that there will be an increase in blasé attitude. The major essence of the blasé attitude is in the blunting of discrimination in society. This implies that the meaning, as well as the differing value of cultural things, is taken to be insubstantial. To the blasé individual, the cultural objectives are evenly flat, where no single object deserves preference over any other object. Simmel while explaining this negative consequence maintains that because money expresses all qualitative differences of all the things in our society in terms of “how much” then its indifferences and colorlessness becomes the common denominator of cultural values (Hart, 2015).This means that money eventually hollows out the core of the things, their value, individuality as well as their incompatibility.
The third disadvantage is an increase in impersonal relations among the society members. According to Simmel, a society where money is an end in itself is characterized by dynamic tensions between the society and the individual. Despite the fact that individuals are free and creative spirits, they are also part f the socialization process. This kind of a society frees the individual form the traditional as well as historical bonds creating greater individual freedom but society members’ experiences a great sense of alienation following the culture of urban life (Herrmann-Pillath, 2014)..Additionally, because Simmel is more concerned with money as a symbol, he indicates that in a society where money is an end in itself, it ends up becoming an impersonal measure of value (Dodd, 2016). For instance, relations related to subordination and domination becomes quantitative relationships of less and more money. These relationships are always measurable as well as impersonal in a rational way.
The fourth negative consequence of a society where money is an end in itself is the increase in individual enslavement. This according to Simmel is as a result of an ineffective division of labor which leads to the expansion of individuality as well as individual freedom (Simmel, 2004). For the individual, this leads to a difficulty in asserting one’s personality. The individual ends up becoming a mere cog within an enormous organization of powers which tears from his hands all the value, spirituality as well as progress to transform them from their subjective nature into the objective life. Additionally, the human values are reduced to dollar terms.
In conclusion, it is evident from the above discussion that money impacts the style of life by growing the objective culture at the expense of individual culture. This is mainly because, in the modern society, money is an objectified measure of value. It is also clear that there are numerous disadvantages when money is an end in itself which include an increase in blasé attitude as well as an increase in cynicism among others.

Dodd, N. (2016). The social life of money. Princeton University Press.
Hart, K. (2015). Money from a cultural point of view. HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory, 5(2), 411-416.
Herrmann-Pillath, C. (2014). Georg Simmel’s Theory of Money and its Relevance for Current Neuroeconomics and Psychology.
Ritzer, G., & Stepnisky, J. (2017). Modern sociological theory. SAGE Publications.
Simmel, G. (2004). The philosophy of money. Psychology Press.

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