However, I used culture quite liberally before. I think it was due to gaining a theological vocabulary from proponents of what is called "world-view", the idea about how ideas shape just about everything. Every Human being has a filter that interprets everything else and sorts it into categories and binaries. This concept has roots in Descartes and his turn to Subjectivity, but it isn't articulated until much later. This was a reaction against Empiricism and a naive Rationalism that assumed that the Human mind was a blank-slate that the World, as it is, was impressed into, like a stamp into wax.
This isn't all bad, but it has run amok in the philosophically naive Christian pseudo-intellectual community. The worst is when it results in someone accusing someone else of holding a belief that they are rejecting. Better (or perhaps even worse) is the more sophisticated notion that people are not cognizant of all of what their beliefs entail. Thus, they live inconsistently for whatever reason (e.g. Humans are not primarily rational, sin blinds them, God restrains the outworking of certain insane beliefs etc.).
One way of the short-hand, now a days, is less a focus on ideas, which tends towards the high-brow, but towards "culture", a more popular and less defined collation of ideas. Culture includes everything from pop-music, car styles, economic emphases, and living spaces. It can cover a much broader category of people in terms that make more sense to many more people. Like I said, I used to talk this way, but there are some major problems. I'll focus on two, but primarily on the second.
First, it's suspiciously reductionistic. I'll hear people talking about immense categories of people under the category of culture. Thus, I'd hear (and say) "American culture", "Western culture", "white culture" etc etc. Of course there are much smaller spheres of activity and thought that these erase in their attempts at vast explanation. When one is aware of specific contradictions, they're swept away as inconsequential, outliers, for a broader story. This isn't to say that outliers don't exist or statistical trends mean nothing. However, bravado and confidence tend to carry these just-so stories about the current state of things further than actual facts. Coherency is not a litmus test of reality, but then again neither is incoherency (i.e. a quick cliche that "fact is stranger than fiction"). It''s not that there isn't some tentative answer that someone can draw, but we're too quick to get pronouncements and pursue with our pontifications and speculations about things we know very little about.
Second, and more importantly, I noticed the use of "culture" as a subject in many of mine, and others', sentences. That is to say, Culture seemed to be doing a lot of things. I am so embarrassed about a previous post of mine about the "failure" of a culture, that I've deleted it. What am I saying if a "culture" failed? How exactly does that happen? I also deleted another post about the development of a trans-national culture beyond the functions of a Nation. Again, how exactly does this happen? Normally, I don't police my own intellectual stumbles, but this was egregious and I don't want people resourcing this as any font of knowledge. It is only perpetuating a category mistake.
The reality is that Culture can't do anything (especially if we define it according to the oft-cited Clifford Geertz) because it's not an agent. But the other tendency is to say that people act out of culture. This isn't completely wrong, but it gets at the problem of agency. If we say people make decisions out of culture, a sort of internalized presuppositions or meanings, it is a rather bizarre world. Abstract meanings exist and people act accordingly with them. Of course, the problem remains: how does this happen? where do these presuppositions come from? It's another just-so story, out of which we can make pontifications and speculations.
The second, and much more major problem, is one of agency. Culture doesn't have agency, people have agency. People make decisions or don't make decisions (which according to Rush is still making a choice). How do people make decisions is a much more interesting question, and I'm not doubting that a person's decisions are impacted by many mitigating factors, including ideas that are of varying degrees of cognizance. But it is within such a context that people make decisions that have subsequent effects for the future of such mitigating factors, such that these factors might mean more, less, or ultimately disappear.
If it's not clear, this is not to say Rational Choice theory is correct or that Humans are fundamentally rational. What it is saying is that people do make choices according to the options that they see before them, and available options are of differing degrees of visibility. This not only matters when we think about Human freedom, and thus dignity, but also for the sheer fact of explainability. What choices someone will make in a given situation is not completely clear, and the pursuit for a sense of smugness for correctly guessing is not sufficient warrant for this obscene verbosity.
So, according to an example I read awhile ago, Star Wars does not have a "particular world-view" that people watching the theaters walk away with. Star Wars is situated in a time and place where certain ideas are intelligible and others are not, certain stories and tropes are popular and others are not. What people take away from it will differ wildly; not because it's a battle of ideas, but individual and groups of people will interpret these messages differently and respond even more diversely. This is both the beauty of art and the failure of propaganda, which Star Wars, in ways, functions as both. This is not so monolithic. Perhaps Star Wars fails to inculcate an understanding about simplistic readings about good and evil, but it does properly brainwash people to conceive that the purity of heart is all that matters. But, even if this happens, people may respond differently to the idea (e.g. disgust, joy, cynicism, hope).
I'm not saying you shouldn't use the word "culture", but it's become so vogue, and so misunderstood, I'd caution you, reader, to be mindful. Explanation for patterns of behavior (even our own) ought to set off red flags that we are merely in the process of self-justification, even if such self-justification damns us. It's not that we can't do this (God forbid), but such a process requires much self-reflection, discernment and understanding. We can't just chalk it up to "culture" or any other grab-bag. This is an intellectual ritual of purification, so we might more properly see the world as Christ the Lord sees it. In the end, this process will enable us to listen more carefully, and, hopefully, to dignify our fellow creatures.