Culture is considered as a key term in anthropology, now in critical mode, and to be worked through powerful tropes that lead to issues in politics, interpretation, translation, stereotype and racism. Anthropology is described as a cultural system itself, with a large supporting institutional apparatus, not unlike the culture industry as critiqued by Adorno and the Frankfurt School. The high mass culture/high culture distinction is considered and some distortions explained (away). Street culture and culture as (development) resource are evaluated, leading to an assessment of culture as souvenirs, trinkets and the ephemera of tourism as a modern commodity fetish. How this measures up to political struggles is again considered in the light of work by critics such as Fanon and those engaged with anti-imperialist struggles worldwide.