Midterm1ReadingOutline - Chapter 1: An Encounter with...

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Chapter 1: An Encounter with Unknown People • 1492: Granada, the last Muslin kingdom in western Europe, fell to the Christian monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella, and Christopher Columbus discovered the New World of Nordic legend. • Our essential humanity as a single species—capable of mating, producing offspring, and speaking languages that can be learned by everyone—was everywhere quickly established during the Age of Discovery. • In the 16 th century, Europeans believed that they had the divine right to conquer newly discovered people in order to convert them to Christianity. • Interpretation of Ethnographic Facts - In 1580, Montaigne published the first edition of his essays in France o “On Cannibalism” o Concluded that the custom arose, not from hunger or need of food, but from motives of pure revenge and a desire to attain complete victory of the enemy. • Ethnocentrism - Ethnocentric bias: Seeing another people in terms of one’s own people and tradition. - Human sacrifice among the Aztecs o During a festival, it was the Aztec custom for some exemplary people from among themselves to impersonate a god. This person was considered very fortunate, for only the perfect were picked. However, the chosen individuals were invariably sacrificed to the god they impersonated. o Analyzed by Sahagún - Continuing problems o Montaigne relied too much on Greek philosophers Interpretation based solely on the evidence o Sahagún relied on popular medieval Christian demonology • Glossary Terms - central civilization: The ever-expanding core of the known world into which diverse culture have been absorbed over the course of civilized history—that is from 4000 B.C. to the present. Thus, in 1415 both European Christians and Middle Eastern Muslims belonged to one central civilization, marked by their strong opposition to each other. The Muslims also confined the Europeans to Europe until they began to find the way to sail around them in 1415. - Culture: That complex whole of behaviors, including language, beliefs, manners, and customs, that we learn by being born and raised in our groups or that we learn by being incorporated into new groups in the course of a lifetime. - Ethnocentrism: The disposition to judge and even to perceive another culture by the standards, values, and understanding of one’s own culture.
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- Ethnography: The written description of a group, from ethnos , or “people”. Writing ethnography is the basic activity of cultural anthropologists. - Europe’s Age of Discovery: The historical era dating roughly from A.D. 1415 to 1600, during which Europeans explored and discovered all the lands of the earth. During the latter part of this era bloody wars of religion between Catholics and Protestants also broke out in Europe. -
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This note was uploaded on 02/03/2010 for the course ANTH 263g taught by Professor Seaman during the Spring '07 term at USC.

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Midterm1ReadingOutline - Chapter 1: An Encounter with...

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