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What is anthropology?

The study of humankind in all times and places


What are two significant works of anthropology in antiquity?

the accounts of other people by Herodotus the Geek and by the Arab Ibn Khaldun, written in the 5th century BC and the 14th century, respectively.


Why has anthropology expanded recently?

Until recently, people have been restricted in their geographical horizons. The study of foreign peoples and cultures was not likely to flourish until adequate modes of transportation and communication could be developed and until a literate audience emerged.


What was the failure of Europeans with anthropologic research?

The failure of Europeans to recognize that beneath all the differences, they shared a basic "humanity" with people everywhere.


What was at the root of European cultural arrogance that slowed the growth of anthropology?

Colonialism, cultural imperialism, and a dominant evolutionary theory.


What is colonialism?

When one nation dominates another through occupation (colonies), administration (military presence), ad control of resource, thereby creating dependency.


What is cultural imperialism?

Promoting one nation's clues, beliefs, and behaviour as superior to those of all others.
-Often associated with the Western world inundating other cultural groups with technology, religion, and ways of living (most often via the media), but also through missions, education, and economic control, thereby strongly influencing how people will live.


When did European colonialism reach its zenith?

In the 17th and 18th centuries, when the Spanish, Portuguese, English, French, and Dutch set up colonies in other lands, dislocating the indigenous populations.


What did the discipline of anthropology arise from?

Early attempts to offer scientific explanations for human diversity.


What is "cultural progress"?

That al cultures passed through evolutionary stages until they reached the technologically advanced level of Western societies. This was also the time when the concept of race was put forward.


What did Franz Boas argue?

"That every culture is unique, with a unique history, and is neither superior nor inferior to another."


What did Franz Boas reject and promote and develop?

Rejected racism and promoted cultural relativism. Developed the "Four Field Approach".


What is cultural relativism?

The belief that all cultures are equally vlid and must be studied on their own terms.


What did Bronislaw Malinowski turn his attention to?

Functions of economic, social, religious, and political institutions.


What did Radcliffe-Brown focus on?

How culture as a whole functions to maintain itself.


Who was one of the first anthropologists to pay close attention to his key-informants point of view?

Bronislaw Malinowski


What are three major influences evident in the development of Canadian anthropology?

Museums, academic departments, and applied research


What was a major source of strength and growth in Canadian anthropology?

Applied anthropology


What are the four fields of anthropology that make up the "anthropological perspective"?

-biological anthropology
-linguistic anthropology
-sociocultural anthropology


What is biological anthropology primarily concerned with?

With humans as biological organisms


What is sociocultural anthropology primarily concerned with?

Humans as cultural animals


What is archaeology primarily interested in?

Cultural behaviour, in that it reconstructs the lives of people who lived in the past.


What is linguistic anthropology primarily concerned with?

The study of human languages of the past, present, as a means for people to relate to one another and to develop and communicate ideas about one another and the world.


What is paleoanthropology?

The study of fossil remains of our ancient ancestors, in order to reconstruct the course of human biological evolution.


What is primatology?

The study of the biological and social nature of our closest relatives: prosimians, monkeys, and apes.


What is forensic anthropology?

A field of applied biological anthropology and archaeology that specializes in the identification of human skeletal remains for legal purposes.


What is archaeology?

Is the study of material remains in order to describe and explain the behaviour of people who have lived before us. The tools, pottery, and other enduring artifacts that remain are a legacy of the past that reflects certain aspects of human behaviour.


What is prehistoric/pre-contact archaeology?

The study fanciest cultures the did not possess writing systems to record their history.


What is historic archaeology?

The study of past cultures that possessed written records of their history. Stud those cultures with historical documents available in order to supplement the material remains people left behind.


What is the University of Arizona's Garbage Project?

-The tests clearly show a difference in what people say they do and what garbage analysis shows they actually do.
-Fifteen percent of respondent households affirmed consumption of beer but no household reported consumption of more than eight cans a week.
-Analysis of garbage, however, demonstrated that beer was consumed in more than eighty percent of households and that fifty percent discarded more than eight empty cans a week.


What was an interesting finding of the garbage project when it discussed beef?

Another interesting finding of the garbage project was that when beef prices reached an all-time high in 1973, so did the amount of beef wasted by house-holds. High prices and scarcity correlate with more waste rather than less.


What allows us to preserve and transmit our culture from generation to generation?



What do linguistic anthropologists study?

The way language is used as a resource for practising, developing, and transmitting culture. They examine how people use language and other means of expression to develop relationships with one another and to maintain social distinctiveness.


What do descriptive linguists deals with?

-The description of a language (the way a sentence is formed or a very is conjugated).
-The study of patterns and structure in language.


What is historical linguistics?

-The history of languages (the way languages develop and influence one another with the passage of time).
-The study of language origins, language change, and the relationships between languages.


What is sociolinguistics?

-The study of language in its social setting.
-Through the study of language in its social setting, anthropologists can understand how people perceive themselves and the world around them.


How may linguistic anthropologists estimate how long speakers both languages have lived where they do?

By working out the genealogical relationships among languages and examining the distributions of those languages. Identifying words unrelated languages that have survived from an ancient ancestral tongue can suggest where and how the speakers of the ancestral language lived.


What do applied anthropologists study?

Besides academic settings, applied anthropologists often work within government bureaux, private corporations, and international development agencies. More often than not, they function as mediators between the members of a cultural group and some government or private agency.


What does sociocultural anthropology examine?

Sociocultural anthropology examines contemporary or recent cultures. They concentrate on the study of human behaviour in contemporary cultures.
-Seek to understand the characteristics of diverse culture groups to explain similarities and differences.


What is the dominant form of anthropology in Canada?

Sociocultural anthropology.


What is the definition of 'culture bound'?

Theories about the world and reality based on the assumptions and values of one's own culture.


What group of anthropologists seek to understand the interrelatedness of sociocultural systems, and the ways in which our economic, religious, and social and political organizations influence one another as well as social change?

sociocultural anthropologists


What is the greatest value of sociocultural anthropology in today's global community?

To serve as a medium for promoting cultural awareness and appreciation of the world's incredible cultural diversity


What is ethnography?

Involves collecting descriptive material on a culture. The information collected proved a descriptive account of the people.


What is ethnology?

The comparative study of patterns witnessed in cultures to explain human behaviour. Ethnologists attempt to develop generalizations or rules to explain human behaviour.


What is ethnohistory?

A method of studying cultures of the recent past using oral histories; archeological sites; the accounts of explorers, missionaries, and traders; and archival documents such as land titles and birth and death records


How does an anthropologist become an ethnographer?

By living among the people he or she studies.


What is participant observation?

A method of learning a people's culture through direct observations and participation in their everyday life.


Who championed participant observation?

Franz Boas


Who is the "father of fieldwork"?

Franz Boas


What challenges does moving into the field involve?

Developing a research proposal, dealing with an ethics and review board, learning the language, overcoming personal and professional insecurities, developing a rapport with community members, and coping with health and safety issues, as well as culture shock.


What is one of the most critical challenges for anthropologists?

Researcher bias


What is culture shock?

The difficulty anthropologists have in adapting to a new culture that differs markedly from their own.


What is the holistic perspective?

A fundamental principle of anthropology, that the various parts of culture must be viewed in the broadest possible context to understand they interconnections and interdependence.


What are key informants/respondents?

Members of a culture who help the ethnographer interpret what she or he observes. The term "respondents" or "subjects" is lately preferred over "informants,' since the latter has negative connotations associated with providing inside information to authorities.


What was one of the landmark projects during the 1950s and 1960s in Canadian society for ethnographic research?

Harry Hawthorn's report on the impact of providing First Nations people with old-age pensions.


What was the early 1960s project by Marc-Adelard Rumbly, Paul Charest, and Yvan Breton?

Conducted a community study of St-Augustin, a Quebec fishing village on the Gulf of St. Lawrence. This study is notable foreign on of the first to trace the social changes experienced by a traditional community as it became a modern community over the course of 65 years.


What is popular culture?

The culture of your everyday lives -- television, sports, fashion, arts and crafts, fiction and music.


How are anthropologists paying more attention to living histories?

through narratives and oral histories


What does ethnography provide for ethnologists?

Ethnography provides the basic data that th ethnologist may then use to study one particular aspect of a culture by comparing it with that same aspect in other cultures.


What is cross-cultural comparison?

Comparing one particular aspect of a culture with that same aspect in others.
-key characteristic of sociocultural anthropology, like the holistic approach
-collect far richer data


What is the study of alternative ways of doing things?

ethnology and ethnography


What do ethnohistorians study?

Cultures of the recent past, by drawing upon oral histories and written accounts left by explorers, missionaries, and traders, and by analyzing data such as archaeological records and archival materials (e.g., land titles, birth and death records).
-Valuable means for understanding cultural change
-Ethnohistoric research is also valuable for assessing the reliability of data used for making cross-cultural comparisons.


What are the problems and limitations of ethnohistory?

-biases and suffer from inaccuracies, misinterpretations, and distortions
-ignorance and personal biases


What must ethnohistorians take into consideration?

The reliability and objectivity of their literary sources, and often rely on several forms of information to validate their findings.


What is the primary concern of all anthropologist?

The careful and systematic study of humankind.


How does anthropology display many of the characteristics of a science?

It entails designing hypotheses or tentative explanations for certain observable phenomena, collecting data to test and prove or disprove these hypotheses, and developing a theory to explain the phenomena.


It is difficult for someone who's grown up in one culture to develop hypotheses about other that are not___ ___.

culture bound


Recognizing the potential problems of framing explanations that are not culture bound, what do anthropologists do to avoid this?

Immerse themselves i the data to the fullest extent possible. By doing so, they become so thoroughly familiar with the minute details that they can, ideally, begin to detect patterns in the data, many of which might otherwise have been overlooked These patterns allow anthropologists to propose explanations, which may then be subjected to further testing.


How is replication another problem ins scientific anthropology?

Access to a non-Western culture is constrained by the difficulty of getting there and being accepted. The fact of cultural change as well. What is observable at one time may not be at another.


What is an ideal hypotheses in anthropologic research?

-The hypotheses grounded in a single case may be no more than historical coincidence
-Generated from cross-cultural comparison
-Sample societies
-Universally, or at least broadly, applicable
-Sample should be selected at random


What is gender?

A set of standards and behaviours attached to individuals, usually but not always based on biological sex.
-Gender is a social construct
-Guidelines for our sisal identity, status, and behaviour
-Gender is learned
-Gender is culturally defined


What is feminist anthropology?

A subfield of anthropology that investigates gender and gender relations and that critically analyzes gender roles, positions, and experiences.


What is gender stratification?

Gender roles differ from culture to culture, levels of status and power relations also vary. This is what anthropologists call "gender stratification."


What is one of the most significant contributions of feminist anthropology to date?

The critical examination of the concepts of human rights, oppression, and exploitation cross-culturally.


What is androcentrism?



What is the humanities side of anthropology concerned with?

With other cultures' languages, values, and achievements in the arts and literature.


The humanistic side of anthropology is evident as well in its emphasis on___research as opposed to___research.



What is qualitative research?

The gathering of data based on interviews, documents, and participant observation to understand human social behaviour.
-Detailed description based on observation and interviews


What is quantitative research?

The gathering of statistical and measurable data.
-Numerical measurement


What do medical anthropologists do?

Work alongside other health specialists to identify the beliefs, attitudes, and behaviours that affect health and illness.


What is anthropology's unique methodologies?

That of immersion in a culture.


Why must anthropologists carefully consider the ethics of their research?

Anthropologists deal with people's private and sensitive mattes, including matters that people would not care to have generally known.


Who are the four sets of people that anthropologists have obligations to when their consider the ethics of the research?

1) Those they study
2) Those who fund the study
3) Student and public bodies
4) Those in the profession who expect them to publish their findings


Who is the first responsibility of any anthropologist to?

His or her informants and they people. Everything possible must be done to protect their physical,s social, and psychological welfare and to honour their dignity and privacy. In other worlds, the primary directive is the do no harm.


What are some dilemmas anthropologists face when in the field?

-At what point can or should anthropologist step outside their position as neutral observers
-Where to draw the line between participation and observation
-They have to remain objective


What does anthropology have to contribute to contemporary life?

A conceptual framework for promoting understanding,acceptance, and appreciation of the incredible cultural diverts of our global community.
-In other words, sociocultural anthropology is in an excellent position to promote global cultural awareness.


Anthropology is an examination of our identity in which 2 ways?

Who we are and where we come from.


What complex issues do Canadian anthropologists grapple with?

- language retention
- sovereignty
- immigration policies
- Aboriginal land claims
- defining Canadian culture (or cultures)
- Canada's place in the international community