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the study of human species
exploration of human diversity across time and space
holistic and comparative study of humanity
from the Greek words "anthropos"- humans, and "logos"- the study of

Cultural Anthropology

the study of human society and culture


the study of material remains, usually from the past, to describe and explain human behavior

Physical Anthropology

the systematic study of humans as biological organisms

Linguistic Anthropology

the study of human language


traditions and customs transmitted through learning that form and guide the beliefs and behavior of people exposed to them


a group of people who are interdependent and share a common culture
- as they share a common culture they typically have a group identity

Bride Service

a designated period of time after marriage when the groom works for the brides family


interested in the whole of the human condition: past, present, and future; biology, society, language and culture

Applied Anthropology

the application of anthropological data, perspectives and theory and methods to identify, assess, and solve contemporary social problems


firsthand, personal study of local cultural settings
description of a culture


comparative study of culture

Market Exchange

buying and selling of goods and services at prices set by supply and demand
traditionally in marketplaces
today, no longer restricted to marketplaces


entire group moves with animals during the year

Participant Observation

technique of learning learning a people's culture through direct participation in their everyday life for an extended period

Cultural Resource Management

the branch of Applied Anthropology aimed at preserving sites threatened by dams, highways, and other projects

Emic Approach

native oriented
investigates how local people perceive and categorize t he world

Etic Approach

science oriented
emphasizes categories, explanations and interpretations that the anthropologist finds important

Bronislaw Malinowski

considered the father/founder of ethnography


the political, social, economic and cultural domination of a territory and its people by a foreign power for an extended period of time


practiced by tribes of the North Pacific Coast of North America
where sponsors gave away resources in exchange for greater prestige


the cultivation of crops using hand tools such as digging sticks
slash and burn or swidden agriculture


the tendency to view one's own culture as superior and to apply one's own cultural values in judging the behavior and beliefs of people raised in other cultures


plant cultivation characterized by continuous and intensive use of land and labor
-erosion of soil
-reliance on land
-animals lead to disease

Cultural Relativism

the viewpoint that behavior in one culture should not be judged by the standards of another culture
at its most extreme it states that the moral and ethical rules and all cultures deserve equal respect


a system of production, distribution, and consumption of resources
economics is the study of such systems


Nayar, India
society without nuclear family, women have multiple children but kids aren't linked to fathers


transmission of a societies culture from one generation to the next, by process by which a child learns his or her culture, either being taught through direct instruction or observation, experience and interaction with others


Contemporary flow of goods, people, technology, and production across national boundaries
forces include international commerce and finance, travel and tourism, transnational migration, the mass media, and various high tech information flows


motives include: to maintain superiority through display of wealth, ensure a standard of living for supporters, and establish alliances
requires central administration and economic surplus, involves the element of coersion

Franz Boas

founder of the North American Cultural Anthropology
introduced the concept of cultural relativism
historical particularism

Margaret Mead

early public anthropologist
'coming of Age in Samoa'

Claude Levi- Strauss

French structuralism
symbolic anthropology

Cultural Ecology

Leslie White, Julian Steward
stressed the interaction between environment and culture

Culture Shock

a psychological disorientation experienced when attempting to operate in a radically different cultural environment
refers to a whole set of feelings about being in an alien setting and the ensuing reactions


part of group moves with herds


the view that one must study all aspects of a culture to understand the whole culture


autonomous political unit encompassing many communities within its territory
centralized government, draft men for war
power to collect taxes
decree and enforce laws

Historical Particularism

histories are not comparable; diverse paths can lead to the same cultural result


regional polity in which two or more local groups are organized under a single ruling individual who is at the head of ranked hierarchy of people
office of chief is hereditary and for life
redistributive system


a dominant group tries to destroy and culture of an ethnic group


based on cultural similarities among members of the same ethnic group and differences between that group and others
groups share beliefs, customs, name, religion


a cultural category rather than a biological reality
an ethnic group that is assumed to have a biological basis but does not
socially constructed, defined in terms of contrasts perceived by particular societies


group of communities in a region, sharing a common culture
higher population density than bands
informal leadership


receives his/her power directly from the spirit world
acquires the ability to do sacred things through personal communication with the supernatural
part-time religious specialist
relationship with community is personal

Multiculturalism/ Plural Society

two or more groups live in harmony with one another while retaining their own ethnic heritage, pride, and identity


refers to policies and practices that harm a group and its members
de facto: practiced but not legally sanctioned
de jure: part of a law


the devaluation of a group because of its assumed behavior, values, capabilities or attributes


mass annihilation of groups of people


ethnically Japanese, social outcasts and generally live in segregated communities


the modern scientific study of all aspects of language

Historical Linguistics

anthropologists reconstruct ancient languages by comparing their contemporary descendants and in doing so make discoveries about history


smallest classes of sound that change meaning


examines linguistic diversity: ranges from mulit-lingualism to the varied dialects and styles used in a single language
shows how speech reflects social differences


the study of gestures, body postures, and motions, facial expressions, as communicative phenomena


investigate the sound system in any language


the study of the structure of words

Descriptive Linguistics

studies the structure of language and its variation within language and across languages
sound and shape of language




rules of principles of phrase and sentence making


exchange of goods and services between two parties
1) generalized
2) balanced
3) negative


hunting and gathering


a type of agricultural activity based on nomadic animal husbandry or the raising of livestock to provide food, clothing, and shelter

Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis

a theory claiming that language influences perception

Sir Edward Tylor

founder of the anthropology of religion, believed that progression of cultures was related to their religious system: animism, polytheism, monotheism


traditional Maya dress


small groups of fewer than 100 people, related by kinship or marriage

Closed Corporate Community

Eric Wolf: communities that have collective control over land
mechanisms for forcing the redistribution of wealth, forbidding outsiders from joining the community


traditional customs of a community

Matrilineal Descent

descent traced exclusively through the female line to establish group membership


a permanent social unit whose members claim common ancestry

Patrilineal Descent

descent traced exclusively through the male line to establish group membership

Ambilineal Descent

system in which individuals may affiliate with the mother or father's descent group


the married couple lives with or near the relatives of the husband's father


the married couple lives with or near the relatives of the wife


members claim descent from a common ancestor
members do not know the genealogical links to that ancestor


group of consaguineal kin who trace their genealogical links to a common ancestor

Unilineal Descent

descent that establishes group membership exclusively through either the male or female line


mating with certain kin who are defined by society as being inappropriate sexual partners


rule the requires a person to marry outside a group


rule that requires a person to marry withing a group


having more than one spouse at a time


marriage of one man to more than one woman at once


marriage of one woman to more than one man at once

Bilateral Descent

people trace their descent equally through the father and mothers line


indigenous people had a life expectancy of 40 years, malnourishment, kids not school, produces 50% of Mexico's electricity- Chiapas, Mexico
January 1, 1994
siexe San Cristobal de las Casas
subcomondante Marcos
did not win against government
movement influenced other and gathered followers
guerilla movement


compensation given upon marriage by the family of the groom to the family of the bride


involves the transfer of goods or money from the brides family to the groom or the groom's family


widower marries the sister of the dead wife


widow marries the brother of dead husband

Big Man

has supporters in several villages
common in south pacific societies
lead by example
regulator of regional political organization


when a clan's apical ancestor is nonhuman

Ancestral Spirits

spirit is freed at death
retains an active interest in society after death
found in societies with descent-based groups


related by blood


relatives by marriage


refers to the cultural construction of male and female characteristics


Hatian folk religion
means "spirit"
worship of "Ioa"

Arranged Marriage

a marriage in which the partner is chosen by someone other than the bride or groom

Anthony Wallace

most important religion studying anthropologist
defined religion as "a set of rituals rationalized by myth which mobilizes supernatural powers for the purpose for achieving or preventing transformations of state in man and nature"


belief in spirit beings that may inhabit plants, animals, mountains, rocks and other natural forces

Emile Durkheim



belief in several gods and goddesses


belief in one single god or divinity


the internalization of a dominant ideology


urbanized, state-level society


consanguineal relatives
affinal relatives

Cargo Cults

take their name from the focus on cargo- European goods that have been brought to the religion by cargo planes and ships
revitalization movements that emerge when traditional communities have regular contact with industrial societies but lack their wealth, technology, and living standards
Prince Phillip Movement


a person who exercises control over others

Mothers of La Plaza de Mayo

Argentine children were stolen by the government and are still missing
the mothers protest at the May Square in Buenos Aires every Monday in white bonnets wanting to know what happened to their children


godparenthood- fictive kinship
important means of extablishing social relations with individuals that are not blood relatives or related by marriage

Olympian Religons

organized with hierarchy
polytheistic: pantheon of gods
monotheistic: priesthoods, supernatural phenomenons are under control of one supreme deity

Handsome Lake


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