A Comparison Of Franz Boas And Bronislaw Malinowski

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In the field of Anthropology there have been many men and women whom have made significant contributions. While there have been many well known contributors two of the most well known are Franz Boas and Bronislaw Malinowski. In the United States Franz Boas is known as the “Father of American Anthropology”. Boas believed that the study of people and their culture should be conducted scientifically, using the scientific method. Bronislaw Malinowski is especially known for his revolutionary field work methods. Both men are considered revolutionaries for their input to the field of anthropology through their improvements in techniques and methods, and for their input on long standing theories and ideas, which influenced many future anthropologists. Before the influence of Boas and Malinowski, people, mostly white upper class men, would study the culture of “primitive” people from distant places through the written accounts from soldiers or missionaries. Men such as Herbert Spencer and Lewis Morgan did not perform their own field work. They both based their observations and their theories from the written accounts of others. Boas and Malinowski both believed it was important to personally go out…show more content…
The two, Boas and Malinowski, together changed the methods and techniques used by anthropologists. The methods and techniques introduced by Boas and Malinowski have become a standard for anthropologists throughout the world. The students of Boas, Margret and Benedict especially, employ his techniques in their gathering of information. Benedict also shares the same belief as Malinowski in that “…culture provides the raw material of which the individual makes [their] life” (Benedict 1-2). The meaning behind Benedict’s statement is the same as Malinowski’s, culture exists to benefit the people in
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