This course has provided interesting field studies of cultures that are drastically different than what I would consider “everyday life.” Anthropology examines not only who we are as a people, but also, importantly, who we were as a people. The studies of past cultures is a good place to start to answer questions about societies and cultures today, and to bridge together the gap between the past and present, and maybe even predict where we are headed in the future.
Anthropology spans millions of generations, examining the physical and cultural characteristics of humankind. Often the artifacts recovered from a past civilization can tell us a great deal about how those people lived, their level of technology, their patterns of subsistance, and so on. Anthropology uses methods and tools from multiple scientific disciplines, such as the scientific method which allows the testing of falsifiable hypotheses. This approach seems to be a strong basis for many of the different areas of anthropology, namely archeology, ethnology, and linguistics.
I had thought that male dominance and superiority (“man the hunter” model) was a highly conserved cultural characteristic in past societies, and even in many “less developed” areas of the world today. I was surprised by the case studies of the !Kung San (traditional foraging society, not sedentary), in which females were just as important as males in...
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- INTRODUCTION According to the widely accepted, Out of Africa Theory, the first appearance of the anatomically modern human originated 200,000 years in Africa. Modern humanity exists today as the species Homo sapiens sapiens, whom are generally characterized by bipedal and upright movement, the use of tools, and a complex brain structure as compared to their ancestral counterparts. All modern humans evolved from fourteen specific “ancestral population clusters” and from 100,000 to 50,000 years ago migrated and hybridized or interbred throughout the world in waves replacing archaic species and populating the world.... [tags: Anthropology]
2028 words (5.8 pages)
- ... Boas trained a number of great anthropologists that drew inspiration from him. One of these students was Alfred Kroeber. Kroeber was a theorist in historical particularism however; he did stray from Boas in a few details. Boas favored studying the individual in a role while Kroeber was only interested in the role. Kroeber was more interested in a regional approach to studying cultures. This method differed from Boas’s way of thinking since he valued each culture as a unique concept. Kroeber combined the cultures together to compare them regionally.... [tags: Anthropology, Culture, Sociology]
1358 words (3.9 pages)
- ... Cultural anthropology has gave us a better understanding of world affairs and world problems, because it studies the way people think and do things differently. One of the principles of method to understand other cultures as Malinowski states "to live without other white men, right among the native."(page 6) because you need to immerse yourself in their cultures. In order to do that, you need to hangout with them to better observe the way they behave and act as a community. In some ways, being parts of a culture makes you a better person to understand the way they work differently so as to well interpret their cultures.... [tags: Culture, Sociology, Anthropology, Linguistics]
806 words (2.3 pages)
- Cultural Anthropology and Ethnographic Fieldwork James P. Spradley (1979) described the insider approach to understanding culture as "a quiet revolution" among the social sciences (p. iii). Cultural anthropologists, however, have long emphasized the importance of the ethnographic method, an approach to understanding a different culture through participation, observation, the use of key informants, and interviews. Cultural anthropologists have employed the ethnographic method in an attempt to surmount several formidable cultural questions: How can one understand another's culture.... [tags: Cultural Anthropology Papers]
1792 words (5.1 pages)
- ... This is why language and religion are both very important aspect of culture. One down side of having so many different cultures and religious beliefs in ethnocentrism. Ethnocentrism is the belief that ones group is superior based off of language,behavior, customs, and religion. You see this everyday especially in America. America is awful when it comes to equality. Especially the group of white americans who believe that everyone should speak english because english is a “superior” language.... [tags: Culture, Anthropology, Sociology]
784 words (2.2 pages)
- ... Another branch of contemporary anthropology is, symbolic anthropology, or the study of a societies or cultures symbols in both religious and ritual context. Mary Douglas introduced a more theoretical approach to anthropological study. She emphasized cross-cultural examinations. This comparative method tends to present connections that may appear concrete on the surface, but lack any real substance upon further investigation. In any case, she theorized on “Purity and Pollution”, as a concept that could be found across most societies.... [tags: Anthropology, Cultural anthropology, Culture]
1132 words (3.2 pages)
- ... It is a common practice we all in engage in when evaluating other cultures, however, by practicing anthropology this allows us to learn about other cultures by placing themselves into the cultural environment allows us to learn the traditions and customs by experience. Marjorie Shostak`s study of the !Kung people revealed that they organized themselves differently than Western cultures, which included solving conflicts with discussion, communal behavior, and basic living traditions. Moreover, by interviewing and living in this cultural environment, Shostak was able to empathize with the !Kung people and she also considered that all humans share an emotional life, which is important when... [tags: Anthropology, Sociology, Culture]
1093 words (3.1 pages)
- Introduction: Cultural Anthropology is a term that is in everyday lives and topics. When one thinks of anthropology they think of the study of old remnants commonly referred to as archaeology. This, however, is not the only form of anthropology. There are four types of anthropology and they are archaeology, biological anthropology, cultural anthropology, and linguistic anthropology. However, Cultural anthropologists are every where and study people of all walks of life. One can find a topic and find some type of study that an anthropologist has conducted on the matter.... [tags: Anthropology Culture Essays]
3071 words (8.8 pages)
- Anthropology: Cultural Norms Before taking this class, I often thought that our advanced society was the standard in which to measure all other societies from, but after reviewing the material in this course, it is impossible to make such a comparison. Many of the people in a culture similar to the U.S. would probably find most of the cultures we have studied to be “slow”, strange, or undesirable. In fact, it seems that many of the societies actually prefer to live the way they do and accept it as normal.... [tags: Anthropology Essays]
619 words (1.8 pages)
- The Devlopment of Reflexive Anthropology Reflexive anthropology has pressured scholoars to recognize their own biases and look increasingly inwards when studying “other” cultures. Reflexive anthropology is a break away from the traditional study of a clearly defined “us” and “them,” that seeks to shift towards indentification rather than difference. It attempts to uncover the politics behind ethnography. Reflexivity shows how “we” are effected by “others”, and how “others” are effected by “us.” It holds anthropologists accountable for what they write, and how they represent culture.... [tags: Cultural Anthropology Essays]
737 words (2.1 pages)