ANTH 3690 Lecture Notes - Lecture 15: Indirect Rule, Unilineality, Mangwato Tribe

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Published on 22 Nov 2011
School
University of Guelph
Department
Anthropology
Course
ANTH 3690
Lecture 15 Nov. 1. 2011
Founding Functionalists
The Subject, Method and Scope of This Inquiry (1922)
Bronislaw Malinowski 1884-1943
-made field work appear difficult, critical thinking of each step
-vs Mead in Samoa who made it appear easy and a breeze
-his book becomes a classic in methodology,
Initial Points
Describes several large trading systems in the south east end in Papua New Guinea
not just the Kula that he is interested in
at time he was doing research the systems had been interfered with by colonial contact
His description of the Kula exchange is a close professional study of one of the last remaining
ones
He pays homage to members of the Torres Strait Expedition (Cambridge) 1989 - Haddon,
Seligman and Rivers as scientific, indirectly
Stresses the importance of giving full account of how data was collected - this is only good
science
Provides one of the most memorable accounts of the first moments of ‘fieldwork’ ever
‘Image yourself suddenly set down surrounded by all of your gear, alone on a tropical beach
close to a native village...”(p.204)
The Basics of Good Ethnographic Research
‘...patient and systematic application of a number of rules of common sense and well-know
scientific principles...’
not by an miraculous short-cut
vs Mead who thought you could come to know a culture very quickly
for M it is a long process, A, to B, to C, etc
1. Real scientific aims, and know the values and criteria of modern ethnography
2. Put himself in good conditions of work...to live without other white men ... right among the
natives
racial consciousness
3. Apply a number of special methods of collecting, manipulating and fixing his evidence.
Friendship with ‘natives’ and the draw of ‘White Society’
His fieldwork carried out in a setting where there was a caste like separation between
Europeans and the indigenous peoples
Although, he sees spending time with ‘natives’ as leading to a friendship and sociality that
helps to understand their culture
Recourse to the company of ‘white man’ serves as a bread from this daily life but one must not
become dependent on it
Fear of being ‘contaminated’ by views of other white men because they would be judgmental
and unscientific
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Document Summary

The subject, method and scope of this inquiry (1922) Made field work appear difficult, critical thinking of each step. Vs mead in samoa who made it appear easy and a breeze. His book becomes a classic in methodology, Real scientific aims, and know the values and criteria of modern ethnography: 2. Put himself in good conditions of workto live without other white men right among the natives: racial consciousness, 3. Apply a number of special methods of collecting, manipulating and fixing his evidence. Friendship with natives" and the draw of white society": his fieldwork carried out in a setting where there was a caste like separation between. The organization of the tribe and the anatomy of the culture must be recorded in firm, clear outline. The method of concrete statistical documentation is the means through which an outline has to be given: 2.

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