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Intro. to Anthropology
Transcript of Intro. to Anthropology
physical or biological anthropology
How are we different from one another?
How are we all the same?
anthropos* = man (more precisely, PEOPLE)
-ology = the study of
SO, anthropos + -ology = ANTHROPOLOGY
... or, the study of people.
Anthropology has 4 main areas or "subfields"
What is "culture" anyway?
There are LOTS of definitions... but one of my favorites is this one:
"CULTURE" is everything people MAKE...
...as members of a society."
Can you think of anything people do that ISN'T influenced by their culture?
Some think that people may not be the only animals with culture...
Anthropologists study culture through direct observation of how people live.
Anthropology is centered around two big questions:
which studies ancient civilizations through the physical traces they've left behind (human remains and artifacts)
biological variation in modern human populations
How our species uses language to communicate
How languages differ, and how these differences are linked to culture
How children learn language
How language shapes social life
How language reflects power relations in society
We often think of "culture" as something exotic or artistic...
But really, every human group has just as much culture as any other.
What do you think?
Whether or not "culture" is exclusive to humans really depends on how you define it.
...as members of a society.
Both the process of observation and its final written product are called ETHNOGRAPHY.
how cultural behaviors impact health
When we take information from the ethnographic descriptions of many different societies, and use them to draw general conclusions about human behavior, that's called ETHNOLOGY.
The coolest thing about anthropology is that you can use it to study just about ANYTHING you want, as long as it has to do with PEOPLE.