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Terms in this set (80)
The systematic study of all aspects of human (and related species) existence. The study of human nature, human society, and the human past.
What are the four subfields of anthropology?
Biological, Archaeology, Linguistic Anthropology, and Cultural Anthropology
The study of the evolution of humans as biological organisms. It incorporates the study of relationships between biology and culture and the study of human variation.
The study of past cultures throughout examinations of their material remains. Focuses on culture.
The study of language in a social context. Concentrates on spoken language. Focuses on contemporary usage and the evolution of language.
The study of current or recent cultural phenomena, from which influences of past cultural phenomena are often drawn.
Be familiar with various definitions of culture.
Culture is extrasomatic. Culture is behavioral abilities that are not directly controlled by our DNA. Culture is learned and the complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom, and other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society.
In Lecture 1, what is said about symbols and culture?
Culture involves the use of symbols where as social behavior does not need this component.
Be familiar with the definition of the term adaptation presented in the lecture.
Adaptation is the way in which an organism has been adjusted to or adjusts itself to environmental reality.
What does extrasomatic mean?
Extrasomatic means it's seen as being a result of behavioral abilities that are not directly controlled by our DNA.
When did anthropology first begin to coalesce as a discipline?
Anthropology first began to coalesce as a discipline in the late 1700s.
What does Robert C. Dunnell have to say about culture?
Robert C. Dunnell said that culture does not exist and is a guiding framework created by researchers. "Culture is a concept, an idea. It has no objective existence."
Be familiar with the idea of cultural relativism and the nature of morality?
Culture cannot be judged as being good or bad, but only on its relative success. Scientists can only judge from his or her mortality. Morality is a judgment on reality, but is not actually reality.
Science is a way of viewing existence where conclusions (interpretations) must follow logically from relevant and "appropriately obtained" data.
Define Method of Science
A logical system that results in the intellectual ordering of phenomena.
What are the 4 attributes of a scientific study?
Openly defined, transparent, repeatable, and based on concrete units of measure.
4 Elements of a scientific study
Theory, hypothesis, method (data collection), conclusions (interpretations).
The broad principles by which an explanation (conclusion) is achieved.
Hypothesis - A proposed explanation for the existence of a specific set of things and/or events.
The specific way in which an hypothesis (and by extension theory) is tested.
An interpretation as to whether the data supports the hypothesis, and by extension, the theory.
Information obtained for (or which) can be used to test a hypothesis (or theory).
What did Karl Popper notice about science?
That science cannot prove anything, it can only disprove.
What was the nature of the cultural climate in Europe as the social sciences are developing?
Cultural studies were at least indirectly the expansion of European colonialism. The Bible was looked at as providing the explanation for most wordly events. Intellectuals soon began to look for scientific causes. They looked to Greek and Roman culture as an example.
Be familiar with the Enlightenment
Enlightenment thinkers rejected biblical explanations and wanted a materialistic approach for understanding the nature of existence.Enlightenment philosophy revolved around the notion of 'progress'. Human progress was defined as the movement towards human perfection. Human history was seen as operating according to universal laws. Progress was measured by the degree in which cultures had subjugated nature. Less advanced people were looked at as being less rational.
What is progress?
The movement towards moral perfection.
Who is Charles Lyell and what is uniformitarianism?
Stated that the same geological have occurred all through time. He proposed that the earth was much older than the Bible stated. Principles of Geology. This was uniformitarianism.
Who is Charles Darwin? What is the importance of Origin of Species?
Naturalist and Scientist. In Origin of Species he states that species are not fixed in form but change over time through adaptation based on environmental changes in biological evolution.
Developed the notion that culture also evolves in ways at least somewhat similar to biological evolution. Argued that religion was made up to explain things. Insisted that societies went through stages of savagery, barbarism, to civilization.
Also developed the notion that culture also evolves in ways at least somewhat similar to biological evolution.
Lewis Henry Morgan
Published the book Ancient Society (1877), in which he proposed that all cultures evolve in unilineal fashion through three stages : Savagery > Barbarism > Civilization
I. Lower Status of Savagery - From the infancy of the human race to the commencement of the next period.
II. Middle Status of Savagery - From the acquisition of a fish substance and a knowledge of the use of fire to ...
III. Upper Status of Savagery - To the invention of the bow and arrow to ...
IV. Lower Status of Barbarism - The invention of the art of pottery to ...
V. Middle Status of Barbarism -From the domestication of animals in the eastern hemisphere, and in the western from the cultivation of plant irrigation with the use of adobe-brick and stone to ...
VI. Upper Status of Barbarism - The invention of the process of smelting iron ore, with the use of iron tools to ...
VII. Status of Civilization - The invention of the phonetic alphabet, with the use of writing to the present time.
Who wrote Ancient Society?
Lewis Henry Morgan published the book Ancient Society (1877), in which he proposed that all cultures evolve in unilineal fashion through three stages: savagery, barbarism, and civilization.
Tylor's Cultural Ordering
Aust. Aboriginals, Tahitians, Aztecs, Chinese, Italian, and English at the top.
What were the problems with early evolutionary schemes?
They did not propose true theories of culture change but simply described what they believed to have happened.
Their assumptions are backed up by little or no data.
Who was Franz Boas? What did he do?
German-born American anthropologist. Trained many future anthropologists and brought women into the field. Focused on long-term study. He instead that cultural studies should be based around description, function, and diffusion. He didn't think early anthropologists had enough data to engage in broad, cross-cultural theorizing. how individual cultural groups were formed and worked
Bronislaw Malinowski and Functionalism.
Believed that cultural studies should be based around understanding how cultural components function in relation to each other. Viewed humans as having three types of basic needs: biological (food and sex), instrumental (education, law, and politics), and integrative (religion and art). Society's institutions all support and reinforce each other, while meeting the needs of the people who created them.
He viewed social structures as existing for their own sake, not to meet people's needs. Social structures mold peoples' behavior not the other way around. Anthropology should be the study of these systems.
What were the limits of historical particularism?
It had no way to order data or even ask scientifically valid questions (in other words, it was unscientific).
Who is Leslie White and what did he believe?
An anthropologist who believed that the study of cultural evolution lay at the heart of what anthropologists should be doing. Culture evolves through time and there are cross-cultural patterns of change.
Who was Julian Steward and what did he believe?
A cultural anthropologist who developed the first comprehensive model of general cultural evolution starting from an environmental baseline, later known as Cultural Ecology. Studied Native American groups in the Great Basin in the United States. He noticed that the lifeways of these groups differed in relation to underlying environmental conditions.
What is evolutionary ecology?
The belief that cultures evolve in the ways they do largely because of underlying environmental conditions. Cultural evolution is how a group adapts to its surroundings.
Who was Clifford Geertz?
An anthropologist who believed that job of an anthropologist was to figure out what a person's culture meant to them. Culture is basically symbols and no individual can ever fully understand another's interpretations. Since objectivity is impossible, anthropology isn't scientific.
How did most pre-Darwin thinkers view the world?
They viewed the world as being static, or unchanging. Species were seen as having a fixed design.
What is Aristotle's Great Chain of Being?
A scheme that ranked species according to their intelligence, complexity, and importance. This view was the backbone of biological thought for thousands of years.
What is the importance of Darwin's Origin of Species?
A book in which Darwin laid out the first coherent collections of biological evolution. Darwin believed that species changed over time. Given enough time, a species could change radically. All organisms could trace their history back to a single ancestor. He understood that organisms within a species were all slightly different.
What did Darwin believe?
He believed that all organisms could trace their history back to a single ancestor. He believed that all species changed through time. He understood that all species within an organism were slightly different.
Who was Thomas Malthus?
A British economist who believed that not all organisms born could live to reproduce. Pointed out that humans could reproduce exponentially even in ecologically unstable environments.
Potential birthrates of organisms exceed the carrying capacity of a given environment. Populations are generally unstable. Individuals are best adapted for a specific environment. Surviving organisms pass their traits on to their offspring. SPECIES CHANGE OVER TIME TO MEET ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS. Natural selection is survival of the fittest. Differential reproductive success of individuals over multiple generations (governed by environmental conditions)
A Genotype is the genetic makeup of an individual. A genotype can refer to an entire organisms' genetic makeup.
The observable physical characteristics of an organism.
A group of living organisms consisting of similar individuals capable of exchanging genes or interbreeding.
What is ecology and what is its goal?
Ecology is the scientific study of evolutionary relationships between organisms and their environment.
Define the levels of ecological study
Organisms, Population, Community, Ecosystem, Biome, and Biosphere.
An entity engaging in chemical and mechanical processes associated with life.
A group of interacting and interbreeding species.
Different populations interacting with each other, some as predator and prey.
Organisms and their physical and chemical environments together in a particular area.
Large-scale areas of similar vegetation and climatic characteristics.
The area between and including the earth's soil and atmosphere, permeated by the sun's rays.
Define the two basic components of an ecosystem
Abiotic and Biotic. Abiotic is the nonliving features of an environment like water or rocks. Biotic is living, like plants or animals.
What is ecosystem evolution
Ecosystems are always evolving because changes in abiotic natures of the system trigger evolutionary responses in organisms.
Explain the principle of allocation
All organisms take energy in in some form and use this energy to survive and reproduce. An organism must balance out its allocation of energy it needs for survival with that it uses for reproduction. Organisms with a good balance of this are the most fit. Energy used for survival is not available for reproduction.
What is a trophic system and define its three basic components.
The biotic component of an ecosystem includes producers, consumers, and decomposers.
What is evolutionary (behavioral) ecology?
Behavioral ecology studies how the behavior of organisms affect evolutionary fitness. Behavioral ecologists look at how group behavior effects the selection of the individual phenotype. It does not matter whether a trait is passed on biologically or through torture for it to affect the fitness of an organism.
Define "Theories of Optimality"
Organisms generally tend to search for food in the most optimum manner, where the food mass and value is greatest in comparison to energy expended. Those who forage most optimally will have the highest reproductive optimality and these optimal traits will be passed on to their offspring.
What does natural selection do?
Natural selection shapes the behavior of organisms as well as their physical properties. Organisms that behave in an optimal manner in the long run will out compete those behaving in a less than optimal manner.
What are evolutionary stable strategies?
Simple reproductive advantages can run counter to the long-term benefit of organisms. Exponential reproductive success will cause environmental degradation. Natural selection favors behavioral strategies that maximize reproductive success within the context of environmental limits.
How do stable and unstable environments affect the behavior of the organism?
Stable environments tend to produce conservative behaviors in organisms that do not encourage change.
Unstable environments tend to encourage innovative behaviors.
Explain the idea of the extended phenotype
Richard Dawkins proposed the idea that both the behavior and the creations of organisms affect their survival are in a sense a part of their phenotype. Since objects like bird nests and beaver dams directly affect their maker's survival both these items and the behavior that made them are functionally an extension of their bodies.
The term 'fieldwork' is used to describe reserach in all areas of anthropology from social and cultural anthropology to medical or biological anthropology
What is the difference between ethnography and ethnology?
Ethnography studies cultures from the view of their own people. A comprehensive description of a cultural group's customary behaviors and ideas (usually in writing or film Ethnology studies the characteristics of different people and the relationships between them.
What is the difference between emics and etics?
Emics is studying a cultural from the perspective of someone participating in that culture. Etics is the study of a culture from OUTSIDE of the culture and compares two or more cultures.
What types of societies have anthropologists traditionally studied?
What is salvage anthropology?
Refers to a collection of cultural artifacts and human remains. Anthropologists studied traditional lifeways that they believed would soon be extinct.
What is an armchair anthropologist?
Anthropologists who studied other cultures from the safety of their own home, not engaging in fieldwork.
Lewis Henry Morgan studied New York Iroqas.
FRanz Boas Fieldwork
Advocated living with cultures and learning languages and taking a holistic approach.
Played a large role in sexual revolution of the sixties.
Combining local cultural features with cultures from elsewhere.
Claude Levi Strauss
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