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27mar_noimages - Politics and Law in Cross-Cultural...

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  1 Politics and Law  in Cross-Cultural Perspective Anthro 101 Thursday 27 March 2008
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  2 Political Anthropology looks less at formal operations of government, more at informal operations of political process Concerned with politics “from the bottom up”
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  3 Political Science v.  Political Anthropology in poli sci, the focus is on government, and formal processes like elections, state-level decision making, foreign policy and statecraft in anthropology, emphasis is on the cultural dimensions of politics see politics not only at level of government, but in the daily lives of individuals also in the various social formations within which people live – schools, markets, families
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  4 Micro -politics concern with how leaders gather a following how is authority established in contexts where there is no formal government how are individuals constituted as social subjects how are political rituals used to bind people into groups, and to establish legitimate authority
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  5 Macro-politics What links small communities to larger polities? What links regions or nations into larger global systems? What is the nature of violence in different societies around the world? How do states constitute their own authority and exercise rule? How do individuals and groups protest against the abusive power of states to which they are often subjected?
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  6 Some Key Terms (from text) political system : the process of making and carrying out public policy according to cultural categories and rules policy : guidelines for action public: refers to the group of people affected by policy
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  7 authority : the right to make and enforce public policy legitimacy : when people positively evaluate a proposed policy, and agree to support it, the policy seen as legitimate. coercion : forcing people to support a given policy or policymakers by the use of threats, physical force, or short-term gain such as bribes
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  8 states : political systems that exert formal political authority over certain geographical areas and have identifiable offices nations : groups of people who share or think that they share a common culture, language, and heritage, and who willingly identify themselves as members of the nation citizens : members of the polity, people who legally belong to the nation and enjoy the rights of belonging
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  9 Leadership The ability to  influence others to  act Formal - elected  officials Informal - people  with recognized  authority
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  10 E.E. Evans-Pritchard
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