Week One Overcoming Ethnocentricism

Week One Overcoming Ethnocentricism - ANTHRO 100 Week One:...

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ANTHRO 100 Week One: Overcoming Ethnocenticism August 28, 2008 Four fields: o Social/Cultural Anthropology o Physical anthropology o Archaeology o Linguistics We will be dealing primarily modern human civilizations and how they adapt to their biological and cultural environments Language and its relationship to culture o Important because many anthropological approaches derive from the field of linguistics o The study of human language was one of the earliest of the social sciences, evolved out of the study of the origin of words Enterprise of social and cultural Anthropology o Is interested in the lives, habits, and customs of contemporary human civilizations o Gather data through field work Method known as “participant observation” Involves a certain amount of participation in the activities of other people, while observing what is going on around them Every social/cultural anthropologist is asked to embark on a field work mission at some point in their training o An enterprise which causes one to understand the rues of another society and to live by those rules, and thus gives one a new perspective on their own society o Ethnocentric: thinking of one’s own culture as the best, as the ultimate, and the right o Makes one more objective in understanding their own society/civilization The most important lesson of cultural anthropological field work It denaturalizes and de-familiarizes one’s own culture o Field work is always a lesson in adapting to new conditions o Immerse yourself in the lives of others Entails a number of dangers
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This note was uploaded on 01/04/2009 for the course ANTH 100 taught by Professor Tell during the Fall '08 term at USC.

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Week One Overcoming Ethnocentricism - ANTHRO 100 Week One:...

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