ppoint3 - 4/13/10 ANT2 Introduction to Cultural...

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4/13/10 1 ANT2 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology April 8, 2010 Prof. Sawyer Last lecture: B. Malinowski Ethnography Enthnocentrism Cultural Relativism Kula First Contact (1983) – How is culture operating? – How are concepts Ethnocentrism & Cultural Relativity applicable? – How the West creates its Other? – How are categories “Savage”/“Civilized” created? – How are colonialism, inequality, power at work here? First Contact (1983) RACE: how the way you think about race might influence how you might be watching this movie Primary Goal of Cultural Anthropology – challenge certainties —i.e. challenge the way people are so certain, so sure, about things. – “First Contact” is trying to do that… and give some insight into where a sense of being certain comes from RACE • Explore the cultural myth surrounding common sense understanding of race. • Franz Boas (1858-1942) father of American Anthropology founded the modern form of the discipline on a critique of race and social evolutionism— esp. Social Darwinism among the foremost critics of: social evolutionism, Social Darwinism, eugenics, race, and racism.
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4/13/10 2 European Concepts of Change 17th, 18th & 19th c. Great Chain of Being (a fixed order created by God ) =Assumed stasis rather than change. = God had created everything on this planet within an eternal hierarchy God Angels Man Higher Mammals Insects, reptiles, lower mammals Minerals and plants Charles Lyell (1797-1875) ( Principles of Geology —1830, revised 11x by 1872) • critiqued notion of GCofB =advanced a geological theory==> earth’s physical features resulted from steady, gradual processes of transformation = fundamental point ==> geological change (although continuous) is non-directional and non-progressive there was neither rhyme nor reason to the changes in geological form. Charles Darwin (1809-1882) ( The Origin of Species , 1859) strongly influenced by Lyell. • =basic thesis==> a changing environment wields a natural pressure on the organisms living in that environment to change.
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3 i.e. Manchester Moths • what’s significant here? – the story it tells us about change.
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ppoint3 - 4/13/10 ANT2 Introduction to Cultural...

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