146 terms

from Cultural Anthropology by Carol R. Ember and Melvin Ember

Studying for the ANT102 final exam.
Approach to study human beings. p4
The study of recent cultures is now usually referred to by the parent name, cultural anthropology. p4
3 Main Branches of Cultural Anthropology
Are Archaeology (the study of past cultures, primarily through their material remains). Anthropological linguistics (the anthropological study of language) and ethnology (the study of existing an recent cultures) p6
Cultural Anthropology
Is concerned with how and why cultures vary or are similar in the past and present. p6
Is a set of learned behaviors and ideas that are characteristics of a particular society or other social groups. p16p6
Biological Anthropology
Seeks to answer two distinct sets of questions. The first set includes questions about the emergence of humans and their later evolution (this is called human paleontology or paleoanthropology). The second set includes questions about how and why contemporary human populations vary biologically (this is called human variation) p5
Anita Springs
First did fieldwork in Zambia in the 1970's Her interest was medical anthropology. Her work focused on customary healing practices, particularly involving women and children. In the 1980's she designed and directed the Women in Agricultural Development Project in Malawi, funded by the Office of Women in the U.S. Agency for International Development. The project aimed to collect date on both female and male agriculturalists and how development agents treated them. p10
Homo Sapiens
All living people are homo sapiens and can be successfully interbreed. p5
Usually spend a year or so living with, talking to, and observing the people whose customs they are studying. They rely on observations and interviews. p9
2 Fields of Archaeology
Prehistory, the time before written records and historical archaeology, studies the remains of recent peoples who left written records. p6
Anthropologist, psychologists, and biologists who specialize in the study of primates. p5
The study of how language is used in social contexts. p7
When we talk about the commonly shared customs of a group within a society, which are a central concern of a sociologists and increasingly of concern to anthropologists, we are referring to subculture. p16
Darwinism theory
The strong will survive. Species evolve over time.
Studies how the ways of life of a particular group of people have changed over time. Ethnohistorains investigate written documents such as missionary accounts, reports by traders and explorers, and government records, to try to establish the cultural changes that have occurred. They rely on the reports of others. p9
Attempts to derive these rules from a logical analysis of ethnographic data that are kept as free as possible from contamination by the observer's own cultural biases.
The Cross-Cultural Researcher
Who may be a cultural anthropologists or some other kind of social scientists is interested in discovering general patterns about cultural traits- what is universal, what is variable, why traits vary, and what the consequences of the variability might be. For example: Is there more gender inequality in some societies than in others? Is family violence related to aggression in other areas of life? p9
Ralph Linton
A discovery is any addition to knowledge and an invention is a new application to knowledge. Thus, a person might discover that children can be persuaded to eat nourishing food if the food is associated with an imaginary character that appeals to them. And then someone might exploit that discovering by inventing a character named Popeye who appears in a series of animated cartoons, acquiring miraculous strength by devouring cans of spinach. p24
James Hargreaves
In 18-century England, is an example of an inventor who responded to an existing demand. Textile manufacturers were clamoring for such large quantities of spun yarn that cottage laborers, working with foot-operated spinning wheels, could not meet the demand. Hargreaves, realizing the prestige and financial rewards would come to the person who invented a method of spinning large quantities of yarn in a short time, set about the task and developed the spinning jenny. p26
Unconscious Invention
Is often referred to as accidental juztaposition or unconscious invention. Linton suggested that some inventions, especially those of prehistoric days, were probably the consequences of literally dozens of tiny initiatives by "unconscious" inventors. p24
The process of change seems to include much of what we discussed under the label of diffusion because acculturation refers to the changes that occur when different cultural groups come into intensive contact. p29
The process by which cultural elements are borrowed from another society and incorporated into the culture of the recipient group. p27
Diffusion- Direct Contact
Elements of a society's culture may first be taken u by neighboring societies and then gradually spread farther and farther afield. The spread of the use of paper is a good example of extensive diffusion by direct contact. The invention of paper is attributed to the Chinese. Within 50 years, paper was being distributed as a commodity to much of the Arab world through the markets as Samarkand. p28
Diffusion- Intermediate Contact
Occurs through the agency of third parties. Frequently, traders carry a cultural trait from the society that originated it to another group. Phoenician traders spread the alphabet to Greece. p28
Stimulus Diffusion
Knowledge of a trait belonging to another culture stimulates the invention or development of a local equivalent. p28
A group of related species. p42
Often, in the aftermath of violent events such as depopulation, relocation, enslavement, and genocide by dominant powers, deprived peoples have created new cultures. p35
People who judge other cultures based solely in terms of their own culture. p18
Adaptive Customs
The customs of a society that enhance survival and reproductive success are adaptive customs and are likely to persist. p23
Maladaptive Customs
Those that diminish the chances of survival and reproduction are likely to disappear.
Francis Galton promoted a social and political movement aimed at manipulating races by selectively breeding humans with desirable characteristics and preventing those with undesirable ones from having offsprings. This movement was called eugenics. p45
A social science look for the part or function that some aspects of culture or social life plays in maintaining a cultural system. p47
Political Economy
Assumes that external forces explain the way a society changes and adapts.
Refers to all the optional vocal features of silences that communicate meaning apart from the language itself. p74
The study of communication by nonverbal or nonvocal means, including posture, mannerisms, body movement, facial expressions, etc. p74
A sound or set of sounds that makes a difference in meaning in that language. p81
Convey meaning and how meaningful sound sequences are stung together to form words. p80
The rules or principles that predict how sounds are made and how they are used in words without creating a difference in meaning. p80
Historical Linguistics
Focuses on how languages change over time. p82
Lexical Content
Experiences, events, or objects are singled out and given words may be a result of cultural characteristics. p85
Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis
Suggested that a languages is a force in its own right, that it affects how individuals in a society perceive and conceive reality. p87
Using more than one language in the course of conversing. p91
Food Collection may be generally defined as a food-getting strategy that obtains wild plant and animal resources through gathering, hunting, scavenging, or fishing. p94
Most live in deserts, Arctic, and dense tropical forests. p96
Gathering importance 30%
Hunting importance 25%
Fishing importance 38%
Low population, nomadic settlement, minimal trade, no full-time craft specialists, informal leadership, generally no individual differences in wealth. p97-98
Growing of crops of all kinds with relatively simple tools. Tools are usually hand tools, such as the digging stick or hoe. Methods do not include fertilization or irrigation. Low population, more sedentary settlement: communities may move after several years, minimal trade, none or few craft specialists, generally minimal wealth differences, some part-time political officials. p98
John Dowling
Pointed out pastoral nomads are not the only ones who have to save some of their "crop" for future production. Horticulturalists also must save some of their crop, in the form of seeds or tubers, for future planting. But horticulturalists generally lack private ownership of animals in pastoral societies. Dowling suggested that private ownership will develop only in pastoral societies that depend on selling their products to nonpastoralists. p114
Extensive (Shifting) Cultivation
The land is worked for short periods and the left idle for some years. p99
Slash-and-Burn Horticulture
Slashing the undergrowth, falling trees, and using controlled burning to clear a garden spot. p99
Intensive Agriculture
Use techniques that enable them to cultivate fields permanently. They use fertilizers and plows. They rely on mechanization rather than hand labor. Highest population, large towns, permanent communities, very important trade, many full-tome craft specialists, many full time political officials. p100
They keep and breed some animals, but a small number of societies depend mostly for their living on domesticated herds of animals that feed on natural pasture. Often get their animal protein from live animals in the from of milk or blood. Low population, generally nomadic, very important trade, some full-time craft specialists, part and full time political officials. p103
Labor Division
Is most popular divide by gender and age. p119
Consists of giving and taking without the use of money. Mainly takes the form of gift giving. p121
Generalized reciprocity
Goods or services are given to another without any apparent expectation of a return gift. p121
Optimal Foraging Theory
Assumes that individuals seek to maximize the returns, in calories, and nutrients, on their labor in deciding which animals and plants to hunt or collect. p120
Balanced Reciprocity
Is explicit and short term in its expectations of return. Involves either an immediate exchange of goods or services or an agreed-upon exchange over a limited period of time. p122
Is the accumulation of goods or labor by a particular person or in a particular place. p124
At a potlatch, a chief and his group would give away blankets, pieces of copper, canoes, large quantities of food and other other items to their guests to increase his status. p124
Market or Commercial Exchange
Transactions in which prices are subject to supply and demand. p125
General-Purpose Money
Which nearly all goods, resources, and services can be exchanged. p125
Valuables and the taxes that have to be paid to be a political authority. p126
The Kula Ring
The horticultural Trobriand Islanders, who live off the eastern coast of New Guinea, worked out an elaborate scheme for trading ornaments, food, and other necessities with the people of neighboring islands. The exchange of goods between far-flung islands is essential, for some of the islands are small and rocky and cannot produce enough food. Some people specialized in pottery making, canoe building, and other crafts. Other islanders produce far more yams, taro, and pigs than they need. However, the practical side of the trade is hidden beneath a complex ceremonial exchange, called the kula ring, an exchange of valued shell ornaments across a set of far-flung islands. p123
Economic Resources
Are things that have value in culture. They include land, tools, technology, goods, and money. p136
Is the ability to make others do what they do no want to do. Power is the influence based on the threat of force. p136
Someone or a group is particularly respected or honored. p136
Egalitarian Societies
Contains no social group with greater or lesser access to economic resources, power, or prestige. Examples: !Kung, Mbuti, Australian aborigines, Inuit, Ache, Yanomano. p136
Rank Societies
Do not have very unequal access to economic resources or to power, but they do contain social groups with unequal access to prestige. Examples: Samoans, Tahiti, Trobriand Islands, Ifaluk. p136
Class Societies
Have unequal access to all three advantages- economic resources, power, and prestige. Examples: United States, Canada, Greece, India, Inca. p136
Class Societies
Category of people who all have about the same opportunity to obtain economic resources, power, and prestige.p139
Is a ranked group in which membership is determined at birth. p141
Is socially categorized by biological differences. p145
Margaret Mead
Went to American Samoa believed that adolescence was universally a period of "storm and stress" because of the physiological changes that occur at puberty. p154
Anthropologists and psychologists use to describe the development, through the influence of parents and other people, of patterns of behavior, and attitudes and values, in children that conform to cultural expectations.
Sexually Dimorphic
Two sexes of our species are generally different in size and appearance. p174
Primary Subsistence Activities
Gathering, hunting, fishing, herding, and farming. p177
Secondary Subsistence Activities
Those that involve the processing and preparation of food for eating or storing. p177
Gender Stratification
The variation in degree between sexes. p181
Women's Electoral Success on the Northwest Coast
Women are now holding more political offices in the Coast Salish of western Washington State and British Columbia. Perhaps, they are holding more offices because of new economic opportunities in the service and technical sectors allow women to contribute more to the household economy. p182
Premarital Sex
Sex before marriage. p186
Sex in Marriage
Some couples have face-to-face sexual intercourse or coitus is the usual pattern, most preferring the woman on her back and the back on top. Couples in most cultures prefer privacy. Night is often preferred for sex, but some cultures specifically opted for day. p186
Extramarital Sex
Allowing your spouse to commit adultery. p187
Usually refers to sex between males or sex between females. For example, a man being in a romantic relationship with another man. The range in permissiveness or restrictiveness toward homosexual relations is as great as that for any kind of sexual activity. Among the Lepcha of the Himalayas, a man was believed to become homosexual if he ate the flesh of an uncastrated pig. p187
A socially approved sexual and economic union. p190
Marriage of the Na of Yunnan in southwest China
People live their whole lives in residential groups made up of maternal kin (grandmothers, uncles, brothers, etc). They do not customarily marry of live with their sexual partners. Furtive sex is the norm. Men would visit women, usually after midnight, and leave before anyone would notice. There are no ties between the lovers and there is no encouragement to further the relationship. p191
Rare Types of Marriages
Some societies recognize marriages between people of the same biological sex. p191
Why is Marriage Nearly Universal?
Marriage solves problems found in all societies-how to share the products of a gender division of labor; how to care for infants, who are dependent for a long time; and how to minimize sexual competition. p192
Bride Price or Bride Wealth
Is a gift of money or goods from the groom or his kin to the bride's kin. The gift usually grants the groom the right to marry the bride. p195
Bride Service
Requires the groom to work the bride's family, sometimes before a marriage begins, sometimes after. p196
Gift Exchange
Involves the exchanges of gifts of about equal value by the two kin groups about to be linked by marriage. p196
Exchange of Females
Whereby a sister or female relative of the groom is exchanged for the bride is practiced in the Tiv of West Africa and the Yanomamo of Venezuela and Brazil. p196
A substantial transfer of goods or money from the bride's family to the bride, the groom, or the couple. p196
Indirect Dowry
Payments to the bride originate from the groom's family. Goods are sometimes first given to the bride's father, who passes most if not all of them to her. p196-197
Edward Westermarck Theory
People who have been closely associated with each other since earliest childhood, such as siblings, are not sexually attracted to each other therefore would avoid marriage with each other. p197
Yonina Talmon Study
Investigated marriage patterns among the second generation of three well-established collective communities (kibbutzim) in Israel. Talom stated the people reared together firmly believed that over familiarity breeds sexual disinterest. p197
Arthur Wolf's Study
Study for the Chinese in northern Taiwan support the idea that something about being reared together produces sexual disinterest. Wolf focues on a community still practicing the Chinese custom of t'un yang-hsi or "daughter-in-law raised from childhood." A young infant is traded or sold to be the future wife of a son in the family. The girl is called "little bride" is and brought up in the family with her future husband. Wolf's evidence indicates that this arrangement is associated with sexual difficulties when the childhood "couple"later married. Also, children raised raised together are not likely to be sexually interested in each other when they grow up. p197-198
Freud's Psychoanalytic Theory
Proposed that the incest taboo is a reaction against unconscious, unacceptable desires. He suggested that the son is attracted to his as a result feels jealous and hostility towards his father. But the son knows that these feelings cannot continue, for they might lead the father to retaliate against him; therefore, they must be renounced or repressed. p198
Bronislaw Malinowski's Family-Disruption Theory
Sexual competition among family members would create so much rivalry and tension that the family could not function as an effective unit. Because the family must function effectively for society to survive, society has to curtail competition within the family. The familial incest taboo is thus imposed to keep the family intact. But there are inconsistencies in this approach. p198
Cooperation Theory
Proposed by Edward B. Tylor and elaborated by Leslie A. White and Claude Levi-Strauss. It emphasizes the value of the incest taboo im promoting cooperation among family groups and thus helping communities to survive. p198
Inbreeding Theory
It focuses on the potentially damaging consequences of inbreeding or marrying within the family. People withing the same family are likely to carry the same harmful recessive genes. p199
Means marrying outside a particular group of kin or outside of a particular village or group of villages. p200
Obliges a person to marry within some group. p200
Children of siblings of the opposite sex; that is, a person's cross-cousins are the father's sister's children and the mother's brother's children.The Chippewa Indians used to practice cross-cousin marriage. p201
Parallel Cousins
Are children of siblings of the same sex; a person's parallel cousins, then, are the father's brother's children and the mother's sisters' children. p201
A custom whereby a man is obliged to marry his brother's widow. p202
Obliges a woman to marry her deceased sister's husband. p202
A marriage involving just one man and one woman at a time. p202
Allows a man to be married to more than one woman at the same time. p202
One woman being married to more than one at the same time. p202
Plural spouse marriage. Allows a man and woman both to be married to multiple people at the same time. p202
Sororal Polygyny
A man is married to two more sisters. p203
Nonsororal Polygyny
A man is married to women who are not sisters. 203
Postpartum Sex Taboo
A couple must abstain from sex until their child is at least a year old. Kwashiorkor is a protein-deficiency disease. By participating in a long postpartum sex taboo and ensuring that children are widely spaced, a woman can nurse each child longer and decrease the chances of her child having a protein-deficiency. p203-204
Fraternal Polyandry
When the husbands of a woman are brothers. p205
Nonfraternal Polyandry
The husbands of a woman are not brothers. p205
A social and economic unit consisting minimally of more or more parents and their children. p206
Nuclear Family
Large families usually have a married couple and their children, but there is often polygamy so there may be more than one spouse with more than one set of children. p206
Independent Family
A single-parent family, nuclear family, polygynous, or polyandrous family live alone. p206
Extended Family
Consist of two or more single-parent, monogamous, polygynous, or polgyandrous families linked by a blood tie. p206
Thayer Scudder in Gwembe Tonga Village
Describes their situation after a large dam was built in the Zambezi Valley of central Africa. Economic conditions improved during the 960's and early 1970's, as the people increasingly produced goods and services for sale. But then conditions deteriorated. By 1980, the villagers were in a miserable state; rates of morality, alcoholism, theft, assault, and murder were up. Why? One reason was that they had cut back on producing their own food in favor of producing for the wold market. p303
Gerald Murray in Haiti
Private voluntary organizations rather than the Haitain government were used to distribute seedling trees and the farmers were told that they were the tree owners. Ownership included the right to cut the trees and sell the wood, just as they could sell crops. The tree seedlings given away were fast-growing species that matured in as little as four years. The new seedlings were very small and could be planted quickly. By the end of 2 years, 2,500 Haitian households had planted 3 million seedlings. p306
Overcoming Resistance in Venezuela
A Venezuelan government sponsored program began to give infants powdered milk. The mothers rejected the milk, even though it was free, on the grounds that it implied that the mother's milk was no good. Scientifically, a mother's milk is better for an infant than powered milk. When mothers switched over to powdered milk, it increased malnutrition and misery. Powdered milk must be mixed with mater, but if the water and bottles are not sterilized, more sickness is introduced. Even though the government tried to aid mothers, they really did more damage than good. p307
Cultural Resource Management (CRM)
CRM work is carried out by archaeologists who are often called "contract archaeologists" because they typically work under contract to a government agency, a private developer, of a native group. p309
Forensic Anthropology
Is the specialty in anthropology that is devoted to helping solve crimes and identifying human remains, usually by applying knowledge of physical anthropology. They can help police solve crimes and do forensic work. p310
Medical Anthropology
Are actively engaged in studying health and illness and are increasingly realizing that biological and social factors need to be considered if we are to reduce human suffering. p311
Discovering the health-related beliefs, knowledge, and practices of a cultural group is one of the goals of medical anthropology. p311
Refer to the dominant medical paradigm in Western culture today, with the bio part of the word emphasizing the biological emphasis of the medical system. p312
The Shaman
Usually a male part-time specialist, is often involved in healing. Westerns often call shamans "witch doctors" because they don't believe that shamans can effectively cure people. p315
E. Fuller Torrey
Worked with shamans in Africa and concluded that they use the same mechanisms and techniques to cure patients as psychiatrists and achieve about the same results. He isolated four categories used by healers the world over:
1. the naming process
2. the personality of the doctor
3. the patient's expectations
4. curing techniques
Is often described as a "folk illness" or a culture-bound syndrome because there doesn't seem to be any direct counterpart in biomedical terms. In many areas, it is believed that a person suffers susto, or becomes astudado, when a non material essence from the body becomes detached during sleep, or after suffering a fright. This essence is either held captive by supernatural forces or wanders freely outside the body. p320
Famine in the African Sahel
Famines are episodes of severe starvation and death, often appear to be triggered by physical events such as a severe drought or a hurricane that kills or knocks down food trees and plants. Rarely results from just one bad food production season. During one bad season, people can usually cope by getting help from relatives, friends, and neighbors or by switching to less desirable foods. The 1974 famine in the African Sahel occurred after 8 years of bad weather; combination of drought, floods, and a civil war in 1983 to 1984 contributed to the subsequent famine in the Sahel, Ethiopia, and Sudan. Famine almost always has some social causes. Who has rights tot he available food, and do those who have more food distribute it to those who have less? p326
Hwang River floods in China
in 1931 killed nearly 4 million people, making it the deadliest single disaster in history. The floods in the Hwang River basin have occurred mostly because the clearing of nearby forests for fuel and farmland has allowed enormous quantities of silt to wash into the river, raising the riverbed and increasing the risk of floods that bust the dams that normally would contain them. The risk of disastrous flooding would be greatly reduced if different social conditions prevailed-if people were not do dependent on firewood for fuel, if they did not have to farm close to the river, of if the dams were higher and more numerous. p326
Disasters viewed as Human Immorality
For example, the great flood described in the Old Testament was understood to be God's doing. But scientific research increasingly allows us to understand the natural causes of disasters, and particularly the social conditions that magnify or minimize their effects. When disaster strikes, people think it's God's way of showing the people that have done wrong. p327
People who are poor typically live in inadequate housing. Some of the houses are declared illegal, either because the land is illegally occupied or because the dwelling violate building codes. p327
Problems with slums in Africa
As of the 1980's, 40% of the population in Nairobi, Kenya, lived in unauthorized housing, and 67% of the people in five of El Salvador's major cities lived in illegal dwellings. In 2001, an estimated 32% of city-dwellers in the world lived in slums. p327
Homeless People
They sleep in parks, over steam vents, in doorways, subways, and cardboard boxes. In 1987, more than 1 million people were estimated to be homeless in the United States. Homelessness has increased in the last few decades. About 3.5 million experienced homelessness in 2000, almost 40% of them children. Who are the homeless and how did they get there? In the U.S., unemployment and the shortage of decent low-cost housing appear to be at least partly responsible for the large number of homeless people. Another factor is the deliberate policy to reduce the number of people hospitalized for mental illness and other disabilities. p327
Lewis Aptekar
Studied street children in Cali, Colombia. Whereas many of the homeless in the US and Australia are mentally disabled, the street children in Cali, ranging in age from 7-16, are mostly free of mental problems; by and large, they also test normally on intelligence tests. In addition, even though many street children come from abusive homes or never had homes, they usually seem happy and enjoy the friendship and support of other street children. They cleverly and creatively look for ways to get money, frequently through entertaining passersby. p329
Family Violence and Abuse within Marriages
From 1975-1995, physical violence against children appears to have decreased in frequency over time, as did serious assaults by husbands against wives. But serious assaults by wives on husbands did not decrease. The decreasing rates of abuse may be mostly due to reporting differences: wife and child beating is less acceptable now. In 1992 alone, one out of 10 couples had a violent assault episode and one out 10 children was severely assaulted by a parent. 75% of the violence against women comes from a male intimate partner, such as a husband. In contrast, most of the violence men experience comes from strangers and acquaintances. p329-330
Violence Against Children
Frequent reasons for infanticide include illegitimacy, deformity of the infant, twins, too many children, or that the infant is unwanted. Infanticide is usually performed by the mother, but this does not mean that she is uncaring; it may mean that she cannot adequately feed or care for the infant or that is has a poor chance to survive. The reasons for infanticide are similar to those given for abortion. Therefore, it seems that infanticide may be performed when abortion does not work or when unexpected qualities of the infant force the mother to reevaluate her ability to raise the child. Physical punishment occurs within 40% of the world's societies. p330
Violence Against Wives
Wife beating is the most common form of family violence; it occurs at least occasionally in about 85% of the world's societies. Wife beating is sometimes serious enough to cause permanent injury or death. It is often assumed that wife beating is common in societies in which males control economic and political resources. p330
David Levison
Found that not all indicators of male dominance predict wife beating, but many do. Specifically, wife beating is most common when men control the products of family labor, when men have the final say in decision making in the home, when divorce is difficult for women, when remarriage for a widow is controlled by the husband's kin and when women do not have any female work groups. Similarly, in the US, the more one spouse in the family makes the decisions and has the power, the more physical violence occurs in the family. Wife beating is even more likely when the husbands controls the household and is out of work. p330
The use or threat of violence to create terror in others, usually for political purposes. p336
Malinoswki's version of Fuctionalism
Assumes that all cultural traits serve the needs of individuals in society; that is, they satisfy some basic of derived need of the members of the group. p47
Felt that the various aspects of social behavior maintain a society's social structure rather than satisfying individual needs. p47
Specific Evolution
Refers to the particular sequences of change and adaptation of a particular society in a given environment. p48
General Evolution
Refers to a general progress of human society in which higher forms arise from and surpass lower forms. p48
Attempts to derive these rules from a logical analysis of enthongraphic data that are kept as free as possible from contamination by the observer's own cultural biases. p49