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Anthropologist Marvin Harris

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Kylee Clark

on 27 September 2013

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Transcript of Anthropologist Marvin Harris

Anthropologist Marvin Harris
Major Topics and Research Methods
Harris is a social cultural anthropologist
Major topics focus on the evolution of race and culture
Research methods consists of participation in his case studies
Many of Harris' works point out the flaws that are in others works.
Majored in cultural materialism
Books by Harris
Harris' has written 17 books and many articles below are 11 of those books
Harris' Influence on Social Sciences
Impacted the observation and predigest of the social sciences and anthropology
So in conclusion Marvin Harris was a revolutionary anthropologist who paved the way for all those in the field of anthropology
A Quick Biography
Born August 18 1927
1944 he joined the army, but never saw battle
Received a BA in Anthropology in 1948
1953-1963 Harris was an associate professor at the University of Columbia
Work in Mozambique in 1956-1957 influences his paper titled Portugal's African Wards
3 year position as chairman at the Department of Anthropology (1963-1966)
1963-1980 Professor at Columbia U.
August 1927 - October 2001
African Wards
Early 1970's Harris' son Robert was killed in a car accident
Graduate research professor at the University of Florida from 1980-2000
Retired in 2000
Died October 25 2001
Wife Madeline died shortly after him
Only living member is daughter Susan
social cultural anthropologist
"the commandment 'Thou shalt not kill' does not say that it is O.K. to kill some people and not others.
- Marvin Harris
"Every theory presented as a scientific concept is just that, it's a theory that tries to explain more about the wold than previous theories have done. It is open to be challenged and proven incorrect.
- Marvin Harris
Patterns of Race in the Americas
Racial relations patterns in the Americas
Based on facts of social life rather then Iberic and Anglo-Saxson traits
The Rise of Anthropological Theory: A history of THeroies of Culture
Cannibals and Kings: The Origins of Culture
Showing varieties of cultural behavior
Explains adaptations due to ecological conditions
How culture adopts characteristics in response to ecological changes
Culture, People, and Nature: An Introduction to general Anthropology
A key document to explain cultural materialism
Traces the history of Anthropology/ theory
Creating a strong argument for the use of social sciences
Approach for understanding human cultural materialism
Easy to read read introduction the four fields of general anthropology
Focuses on archeology and physical anthropology
Cows, Pigs, Wars and Witches: The Riddles of Culture
Focuses on the religious beliefs pertaining to animals, violence and witchcraft
Explains that peoples strange behavior comes from identifiable and intelligent sources
Published 1964
Published 1968
Published 1971
Published 1974
Published 1977
Cultural Materialism: The Struggle for a Science of Culture
Illustrates the proper methods/aims of anthropology
Important controversial to theory/study of anthropology
How cultural materialism explains cultural behavior
Adaption of societies to their environments
account cultural evolution using same method as Darwin
essay on knowledge and finding viable truth
Published 1979
Why Nothing Works:
The Anthropology of Daily Life
Looking at problems affecting modern America
Pulls together seeming unrelated cultural developments to explain societal problems
Explains why America is the way that it is today
Published 1981
Theories of Culture in Postmodern Times
Strands of his work over the last two decades
Contemporary statement on anthropologist practice and theory
Nature of culture
Issues over mental/behavioral debate, etics & emics and the holism of anthropology
cultural materialist perspective offered
Cultural Anthropology
Two major objectives
1. presenting a whole view of sociocultural systems
2. provides unified theoretical framework explaining said theories
Published 1983
Good to Eat: Riddles of Food and Culture
Solves major world food puzzles
Explains worlds gastronomic diversity
Shows how irrational first glance has been shaped
How practicality, economics and political necessity has shaped what we eat
Our Kind: Who we are, Where we Came From, and Where we are Going
Topics include:
How races arose
Male dominated politics
Longer lives in females
Conspicuous consumers
Overshadowing war
Biological, cultural and social human evolutions
Full transcript