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ANTH 1001A Lecture 2.docx

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Carleton University
ANTH 1001

ANTH 1001a: Lecture September 18, 2013 • Anthropology is commonly defined as the study of humankind in all places and times. • This is a vast and far-reaching field. How do anthropologists make sense of all of that information about humans? o Holism:  “A perspective that emphasizes the whole rather than just the parts” (Lassiter: 39) = the big picture.  It encourages to see humans as both biological and cultural beings to consider their present in light of the past. o Comparativism: o Refers to the use of comparisons between different groups to make generalizations about the complexity of human beings. o In short: about both human different and similarities. Subfields of Anthropology • Biological Anthropology (or Physical Anthropology): o Human biology. • Archaeology: o Material culture. • Linguistic Anthropology (or Ethno linguistic) o Language and communication -> gestures across cultures. • Socio-Cultural Anthropology o Includes what is commonly referred to as the study of contemporary or recent cultures and societies. Characteristics of Socio-Cultural Anthropology • Fieldwork: an extended period of close involvement with the people anthropologist’s study, during which they collect most of their data. • Culture is one of its central, driving concepts (although it is a contested term) -> the lens through which we understand the world -> distinguishes US culture as opposed to French culture. • Ethnography: most commonly, refers to the written (or filmed) d
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