anthro mid term Flashcards

Terms Definitions
Structural Time
Yanomami gains
greater medical support
restrictions on visits by outsiders
Bronislaw Malinowski
anthropology's most skilled ethnographers. He is often referred to as the first researcher to bring anthropology "off the verandah"Malinowski emphasised the importance of detailed participant observation and argued that anthropologists must have daily contact with their informants if they are to adequately record the "imponderabilia of everyday life" that are so important to understanding a different culture. Malinowski originated the school of social anthropology known as functionalism. Malinowski argued that culture functioned to meet the needs of individuals rather than society as a whole. He reasoned that when the needs of individuals, who comprise society, are met, then the needs of society are met. To Malinowski, the feelings of people and their motives were crucial knowledge to understand the way their society functioned. Non-comparitave. Synchronic.
anthropologists depicted other culures as if these still had not been touched by the wider world
absolute faith in science and empiricism and the importance of a trained person.
Ethnocentrism is the tendency to believe that one's ethnic or cultural group is centrally important, and that all other groups are measured in relation to one's own. The ethnocentric individual will judge other groups relative to his or her own particular ethnic group or culture. Franz Boas and Bronislaw Malinowski argued that any human science had to transcend the ethnocentrism of the scientist. Both urged anthropologists to conduct ethnographic fieldwork in order to overcome their ethnocentrism. Boas developed the principle of cultural relativism and Malinowski developed the theory of functionalism as guides for producing non-ethnocentric studies of different cultures.
how people learn their cultural behaviors
A cultures ability to change behavior
goods are collected from or contributed by members of a group and then given out to the group in a new pattern.
The description of society and culture
being raised in a particular society
Ethnographic method
includes observing and recording (field notes), engaging in the everyday life of the people (participant observation), writing down accounts
Historical Particularism
is widely considered the first American anthropological school of thought. Founded by Franz Boas, historical particularism rejected the cultural evolutionary model that had dominated anthropology up until Boas. It argued that each society is a collective representation of its unique historical past. Boas rejected parallel evolutionism, the idea that all societies are on the same path and have reached their specific level of development the same way all other societies have.[2] Instead, historical particularism showed that societies could reach the same level of cultural development through different paths. Like causes produce unlike effects. all that is important are the internal material exchanges.
Cultural Relativism
The science of cultural relativism justifies its epistemological structure (how we know) with empirical, objective, universal observations such as witnessed in fieldwork and lab work and in polls. It is a methodological tool used for conducting work, and for use as a heuristic tool to analyze the acquired behavioral data. It uses the principle that the understanding of another culture's individual human beliefs and activities is only possible by a systematic effort with the geography and the language, etc, along side the people under study. Boas first articulated the idea in 1887: "...civilization is not something absolute, but ... is relative, and ... our ideas and conceptions are true only so far as our civilization goes."
combines the study of human biology, history, and the learned and shared patterns of human behavior and thought we call culture in order to analyze human groups
Shared views about what is true, moral, and standard in a society.
when innovations move from one culture to anotherMoves by trade, travel, warfare
Social honor, and social note, being well known in society
Social Stratification
refers to a relatively permanent unequal distribution of goods and services in a society.
Negative Reciprocity
unsociable extreme in exchange. It happens when trade is conducted for the purpose of material advantage and is based on the desire to get the better end of the bargain
describe in opreational terms what you think will happen
attempt to trace out the general rules that may govern social life across a range of con...
an economic unit, a group of people united by kinship or other links who share a residence and organize production, consumption, and distribution of goods among themselves.
Ascribed Status
status given to you based on birth
Achieved Status
based on person’s own efforts to achieve social position.
Trying to compare a culture to western society such as politics economy and so on.
Attempt to find the general laws that govern cultural phenomena
European Philosphers state of nature
vilified or idealized
looked to the batives for cles about human behavior
Yanomami belief of photography
the flash \"steals\" their soul
broad enough that you could not hope to address it in a single study
Subject of observation
the subject of observation is an interpretive question
a category of persons who all have the same opportunity to obtain economic recourses, power, and prestige, and who are ranked high and low in relation to each other
A group of people who depend on one another for survival or well being
causes of taino dying out
overwork, disruption of activities, unfamiliar diseases, outright violence
participant observation
Its aim is to gain a close and intimate familiarity with a given group of individuals. and their practices through an intensive involvement with people in their natural environment, over at least a year. it requires that the anthropologist has full command over the native language without a translator, full participation in daily activities and an intimate relationship with the subjects of the study. The method originated in field work of social anthropologists, especially the students of Franz Boas in the United States. A key principle of the method is that one may not merely observe, but must find a role within the group observed from which to participate in some manner, even if only as "outside observer." By living with the cultures they studied, these researchers were able to formulate first hand accounts of their lives and gain novel insights.
Alleged violence promoted by Changon
caused an enourmous distribution of goods which stimulated warfare amoung the Yanomami
people ascrive meanings to objects, persons, communication, tastes, and emotions
field notes
observing and recording
Secularization is the transformation of a society from close identification with religious values and institutions toward non-religious (or "irreligious") values and secular institutions. Secularization thesis refers to the belief that as societies "progress", particularly through modernization and rationalization, religion loses its authority in all aspects of social life and governance.
occurring or changing along with time
ethnicity appears as an independent force that ecxplains why people act collectively in certain ways, whether voting as a political bloc, protecting economic interests or rebelling against national governments.
Something that stands for something else, may vary across cultures
Market Exchange
the principal distribution mechanism in most of the works societies today. Goods and services are bought and sold at a money price determined, at least in theory, by impersonal market forces.
when people consider their own behavior not only right but natural.
beliefs, actions, and patterns of social organization tat exclude individuals and groups from equal exercise of humans rights and fundamental freedoms
customs, beliefs, and institutions are interrelated
refers to the belief that non-human entities are spiritual beings, or at least embody some kind of life-principle. The currently accepted definition of animism was only developed in the 19th century by Sir Edward Tylor, who created it as "one of anthropology's earliest concepts, if not the first". the Inuit typically animistic in their worldview.
having a specific method to retrieve data or study one's subjects. Boas believed that this was detrimental because it left little room to notice anything outside of one's focus. transparent relationship between facts, notes, and story. Laundry list of focuses without leaving room to examine everything else.
Franz Boas
was a German-American anthropologist a pioneer of modern anthropology who has been called the "Father of American Anthropology". He was noted for his focus on empiricism, a notion of culture as fluid and dynamic, field work, cultural relativism, historical particularism. He introduced the concept of "cultures" and never used "Culture" in his writing. Boas argued that in order to understand "what is" — in cultural anthropology, the specific cultural traits (behaviors, beliefs, and symbols) - one had to examine them in their local context.
rural cultivators who produce for the subsistence of their households but also are integrated into larger, complex, state societies
Balanced reciprocity
involves greater social distance than generalized reciprocity and entails a clear obligation to return, within a reasonable time limit, goods of nearly equal value to those given.
is a change in the biological structure or life ways on an individual or population by which it becomes better fitted to survive or reproduce in its environment
Trying to capture what ideas and practices mean to a culture
Ethnic Groups
categories of people who view themselves as sharing an ethnic identity that differentiates them from other groups or from the larger society as a whole
What harm done to Yanomami
epidemic diseases
structural effects
political organization
Unilineal Evolutionism
compsoed of theroeis that state \"western\" culture is the contemporary pinnacle of society evolution, social status is aligned from most primitive to most civilized
Ethnographic present
presumes that culture is static and privileges untouched societies. It homogenizes native societies and erases the ethnographers subjectivity.
Transhumant pastoralism
Pastoralism men and boys move the animals regularly through the year to different areas as pastures become available at different altitudes or in different climatic zones, while women and children and some men remain at a permanent village site.
Generalized Reciprocity
carried out among close kin and carries high moral obligation. Involves a distribution of goods in which no overt account is kept of what is given, and no immediate or specific return is expected
the production of food using the plow, draft animals, and more complex techniques of water and soil control so that land is permanently cultivated and usually needs no fallow period-Peasants: rural cultivators who produce for the subsistence of their households but also are integrated into larger, complex, state societies.
immperialism for anthropology
new regions for study, provide security for field workers, created demand for knowledge
Ferguson's reasons for violence
contact with the \"western\" world
White Man's Burden
the sentiment that white men feel required to aid and educate natives.
The way members of a society adapt to an environment and give their lives meaning
Allegation of staged films
live behavior skillfully caught by camera was preestablished scripts
consequences of second wave
labor migration, cash crops, taxes, forced labor, christian missionaries
what europeans made contact first
soldiers, traders, explorers, colonial administrators, and missionaries
Ethnocentric vs Relativist Fallacy
ethno - belief that a person judges the beliefs and behaviors of other cultures from the persepective of one's own culture, suggesting that one's culture is superior to the other
relativist - committed when a person rejects a claim by asserting that the claim might be true for others but not for him/her
Notes and Queries on Anthropology
A guide book that Tylor sent with missionaries. He instructed them to fill out the book and return it to him for his studies. the guide book asked the missionaries to classify skin colors, and evaluate their beliefs. This is an extreme example of arm chair anthropology.
Various anthropologists and sociologists have used the term Nacirema to examine (with a degree/pretense of anthropological self-distancing) aspects of the behavior and society of American people—citizens of North America. Nacirema offers a form of word play by spelling "American" backwards.
dispute settlement through negotiation assisted by an unbiased third party
Fishing hunting and collecting vegetables and fruits
Four Fields of Anthropology

biological anthropology
linguistic anthropology
cultural anthropology
attempts to describe, understand and explain other lifeways and practices. attempts at comparison.
primarily involves the care of domesticated herd animals, whose dairy and meat products are a major part of the pastoralist diet
Culture Shock
the feelings of alienation, loneliness, and isolation common to one who has been placed in a new culture
Core Values
customs, beliefs, and institutions that are interrelated
Mercator Map
The Mercator projection is a cylindrical map projection presented by the Flemish (Belgian) geographer and cartographer Gerardus Mercator, in 1569. It became the standard map projection for nautical purposes because of its ability to represent lines of constant course, known as rhumb lines or loxodromes, as straight segments. While the linear scale is constant in all directions around any point, thus preserving the angles and the shapes of small objects (which makes the projection conformal), the Mercator projection distorts the size and shape of large objects, as the scale increases from the Equator to the poles, where it becomes infinite. This distortion, causing the northern hemisphere to be significantly larger than the southern, indicates how the makers of the map thought that they were more important than the south.
Structural distance
As opposed to geographic distance, structural distance measures the perceived separation based on kinship.
Post modernism
deconstructing the author and his authority. deconstructing objectivity. deconstruction scientific, singular truth.
Horticulture(extensive cultivation)
production of plants using simple, non-mechanized technology.o Swidden (slash and burn) cultivation: where a field is cleared by felling the trees and burning the brush
sitting down a lot not actually working that much
Nation State
governments and territories that are identified with culturally homogenous populations and national histories.
AAA policy on secret research
dont do it
Armchair Anthropology
a discredited practice of basing anthropological accounts solely on second hand reports; during the era of european immperialism, anthropologists felt it was better to stay at home and gather information provided by those who lived \"on the spot\"
Anthropologist's primary obligations
avoid harm
respect well being of humans and non humans
work for long term goals
consult actively with subjects
What at stake
european politics, advocates of democratic revolution - thought people were good by nature
advocates of absolutism - thought people were by nature bad
Trouillot's arguement
\"The savage is a metaphorical arguement for or against utopia\"
Arm Chair Anthropology
Modern cultural anthropology has its origins in, and developed in reaction to, 19th century "ethnology", which involves the organized comparison of human societies. Scholars like E.B. Tylor and J.G. Frazer in England worked mostly with materials collected by others - usually missionaries, traders, explorers, or colonial officials - this earned them their current sobriquet of "arm-chair anthropologists".
the mutual give and take among people of similar status
Swidden Cultivation
(slash and burn) cultivation: where a field is cleared by felling the trees and burning the brush
Caste System
based on birth, or ascribed status. Closed stratification systems
The study of the material remains that people leave behind and trying to infer cultural patterns from them
Nomadic pastoralism
the whole population moves with the herds throughout the year, and there are no permanent villages
Holism method
to understand a single aspect of culture, seek out its connections with other aspects of the culture
concept of points of view having no absolute truth or validity, and have only a relative value according to differences in perception
modern world system
increasingly becoming a system of economically interdependent nations
E. B. Tylor
Tylor, an arm chair anthropologist, is representative of cultural evolutionism. He believed that there was a functional basis for the development of society and religion, which he determined was universal. he also considered animism to be one of the first phases of religion. He was ethnocentric but not a racist. Tylor introduced unilineal evolution and believed that everyone was on the same line going the same direction. Comparative. Diachronic
Anthropological linguistics
The study of language and its relation to culture
Research Question
often stated in the context of a theory
13th century world system
international trade with china to western europe
object of observation
the object of observation is the thing that is being studied to answer the interpretive question.
Franz Boas rejects Unilineal Evolutionism
the stages were highly ethnocentric and unscientific.. such things cannot be ranked hierarchically but are simply different from one place and time to another, \"western\" societies were not the center of the cultural universe
Infirmity model vs cultural model of Deafnesss
infirmity - viewed as disablity, implies bodily defect, society and institutions decide
cultural - interdependent values, art forms, traditions, organizations, and language
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