Anthropology Today Essay

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Anthropology Today

In society today, the discipline of anthropology has made a tremendous shift from the practices it employed years ago. Anthropologists of today have a very different focus from their predecessors, who would focus on relating problems of distant peoples to the Western world. In more modern times, their goal has become much more local, in focusing on human problems and issues within the societies they live.

This paper will identify the roles anthropologists today play, such as where
they perform the bulk of their work, and what it is they do in both problem
solving, as well as policy making. It will also identify the issues they are faced
with, that is, the nature of the problems they address. Ethics have always been an
important part of anthropology, and this paper will also deal with the ethical goals
of today's anthropologists and some of the ethical problems they are faced with.

The information of this paper was obtained entirely from the internet. It
was designed as an internet project structured to both teach and familiarize
research through the World Wide Web. Any data in this paper was derived
through information posted publicly on internet sites available to any member of
the public with an internet connection.

As a result of the narrow area of research, the information provided both to
the author and the reader is limited. While it is true that the internet is a source of
boundless information, the sheer amount of it all makes reading all of it
impossible. Also, the total lack of journal reports, or texts, means that while the
information provided may not be minimal, it is nonetheless limited.

When people think of an anthropologist, the image of the jungle traveling
character comes to mind. A white man sitting in a hut on some primitive island,
taking notes on the local tribes s/he is living with. Decades ago, this was actually
the case. However, as time progresses, so does the role of the anthropologist in
today's society. Very rarely now does anthropology actually involve extensive
fieldwork in an exotic location. Today, an M.A. or a Ph.D. in the field of
anthropology means that a job locally may be available to you. There is always
the academic side of things, such as becoming a professor of the discipline, but
this paper will focus more on the non-academic roles of the anthropo...

... middle of paper ...

...y have come full-
circle; no longer do they study the foreign, but now study the local. Their
positions in society are almost too many to mention, but the severe increase in the
business world must be mentioned. It can be said that the discipline of
anthropology covers a wide variety of tasks as well as overlapping with other
fields of the social sciences, but that statement becomes more true with each
passing year.


1. AAA 2000 "Code of Ethics of the American Anthropological Association",

2. Anonymous 2000 "Society for Applied Anthropology",, Oct. 18, 2000

3. Anonymous 2000 "A guide for field projects on adaptive strategies",, Jan. 17, 2000

4. Cassell, Joan and Sue-Ellen Jacobs "American Anthropological Associasion Handbook on Ethical Issues in Anthropology",

5. High Top Media 2000 "Anthropology Links",,
Apr. 2000

6. SfAA 2000 "Society for Applied Anthropology",, Sept. 29, 2000

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