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Anthropology 102, Week 3 Lecture Notes

by: Jamie Bynum

Anthropology 102, Week 3 Lecture Notes ANT 102

Marketplace > University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa > Cultural Anthropology > ANT 102 > Anthropology 102 Week 3 Lecture Notes
Jamie Bynum

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About this Document

These are the notes from the lectures given by Dr. Weaver on August 29 and August 31, 2016. The titles of the lectures are "Thinking Like an Anthropologist" (August 29) and "Ethnography and Methods...
Intro Cultural Anthropology
Dr. Weaver
Class Notes
Cultural, Anthropology, Ethnography
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This 11 page Class Notes was uploaded by Jamie Bynum on Thursday September 1, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ANT 102 at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa taught by Dr. Weaver in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 6 views. For similar materials see Intro Cultural Anthropology in Cultural Anthropology at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa.


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Date Created: 09/01/16
Lecture: “Thinking Like an An- thropologist” August 29, 2016 Professor: Dr. Weaver - Cultural anthropology is a social science; social sciences differ from humanities in that they employ the scientific method Cultural anthropologists try to keep their personal influence out - of their work Objectivity: - Even if you are involved in research, try to keep your personal opinion out - Do not let emotions or cultural upbringing color aspect of differ- ent cultures - OBJECTIVITY DIRECTLY RELATES TO CULTURAL RELA- TIVISM No one can ever be truly unbiased - - Cultural anthropologists have the responsibility of representing other people accurately since they are the mouthpiece of other cultures Subjectivity: - One’s subject position or the awareness of one’s subject posi- tion Reflexivity: - Being aware (reflexive) of your own presence in your work and how it affects your work - Cultural anthropologists often write about personal background to reveal any possible bias they might have due to their up- bringing - We try to change our words based on the audience (for exam- ple, you might tell your friend what a crazy weekend you had, but not your professor) - Ways of knowing: Subjectivity, objectivity, reflexivity - Subjectivity and reflexivity: truth may be influenced or not true - Cultural anthropologists try to represent others on their sub- jects’ terms, not their own Key Terms from Chapters 1 and 2: • Culture: The learned behaviors and symbols that allow people to live in groups; the primary means by which humans adapt to their environment; the ways of life characteristic of a particular human society • Subcultures: A group within a society that shares norms and values significantly different from those of the dominant culture • Society: A group of people who depend on one another for sur- vival or well-being as well as the relationships among such peo- ple including their status and roles • Cultural Relativism: The idea that cultures should be analyzed with reference to their own histories and values rather than ac- cording to the values of another culture • Holism: In anthropology, an approach that considers the study of culture, history, language, and biology essential to a complete understanding of human society • Ethnocentrism: Judging other cultures from the perspective of one’s own culture; the notion that one’s own culture is more beautiful, rational, and nearer to perfection than any other • Enculturation: The process of learning to be a member of a particular group • Subjectivity: One’s subject position or awareness of one’s sub- ject position • Innovation: An object or way of thinking that is based upon but is qualitatively different from existing forms • Diffusion: The spread of cultural elements from one society to another Functionalism: A theoretical position in anthropology that fo- • cuses on finding general laws that identify different elements of society, showing how they relate to each other, and demonstrat- ing their role in maintaining social order • Biological/Physical Anthropology: The subdiscipline of an- thropology that focuses on the study of people from a biological perspective, primarily on aspects of humankind that are geneti- cally inherited • Archaeology: The subdiscipline of anthropology that focuses on the study of past cultures based primarily on their material remains • Linguistic Anthropology: The study of language and its rela- tion to culture • Cultural Anthropology: The study of human thought, behavior, and life ways that are learned rather than genetically transmitted and that are typical of groups of people • Applied Anthropology: The application of anthropological knowledge to the solution of human problems Lecture: Ethnography And Methods August 31, 2016 Professor: Dr. Weaver Methods: - Participant observation - Systematic observation - Interviewing - Focus groups - Genealogy - Photography and videography - GIS and satellite - Participatory research - Multi-cited research - Morgan and Tylor were “armchair anthropologists”, which means they did work based on the writings of cultures done by other people; they were ethnologists - These two were not interested in the preservation of cultures, unlike Franz Boaz and Bronislaw Malinowski Cultural Evolutionism - The idea that societies evolve to become more complex and formal State Chiefdom Band Tribe These were believed to be “inferior” to the colonists who wrote about them Fieldwork - The “turning point of contemporary anthropology” - Franz Boaz: Cultural relativism *one of the first to do fieldwork - Bronislaw Malinowski: Participant observation Methods Defined: - Participant Observation: Immersion into a different culture than your own to learn about it *Most anthropologists do participant observation *A gatekeeper helps to get you in with a community *A key informant is a person that helps you with your studies the most - Systematic Observation: Systematically obtaining data *Normally more quantitative than qualitative - Interviewing: Asking informants questions *Four types of interviews: informal, unstructured, semi-structured, and structured - Focus groups: Participation in answering questions and giving comments *Focus groups give a range of what different people think - Genealogies: Ask informants about ancestry - Photography and Videography: The obtaining of data through photos or videos - GIS and Spacial Analysis: Mapping and graphing - Participatory Research: Having the participants do the research themselves - Multi-Cited Research: Research that takes place in two or more places, sometimes around the world Shapes the questions we ask: - Theoretical orientation - Research questions - Nature of the “society” being studied - Practicalities (time, budget, etc.) - Recently, anthropologists have began mixing research methods - Cultural anthropology has gone from being very broad to being very specific


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