APY106 Economic Notes

APY106 Economic Notes - Anthropology Economics We cannot...

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Anthropology October 26, 2009 Economics: - We cannot understand economics without looking at the structure of society and the sentiments (values) that link people together in society... similarly, an awful lot of politics is conducted through economic means - Economic importance if anything to do with production, distribution, and consumption(or use) - We learn that consumer is very important; save, not go into debt... and spend to get the economy going - A central issue in the study of economics is value ; what gives an item or service value? What makes people want it? Ferraro’s chapter 8 is the central chapter on Economics this week - Formal economic theory presumes certain reasons people wants things and presumes why things are produced. - 19 th century, the focus on why things acquire value, was on production . Valuable because of processes and resources depending on production; cost for resources required to produce it - Something is valuable depending on the cost of labor it cost to produce it; highly skilled labor is expensive. This lead to the labor theory of value. All this driven by profit motive. - Profit motive says that if the profit is greater than the cost, an item will be bought. If the consumer thinks it’s more valuable than what he has to pay for it. Ignores poverty situation - The profit was always measured in terms of money - In the 1930’s and 1940’s the great age of anthropological field work and they did ethnographic research in societies(if we didn’t do it now, we will lose info on cultures); - Several anthropologic studied traditional economic systems. Brought back conclusions:
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