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Lecture 4

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Victor Barac

ANT102H5S – Introduction to Sociocultural and Linguistic Anthropology Lecture 03 – July 18, 2013 Culture and Economics 1 Overview - Materialist = euphemism - Economics Systems  based on subsist systems o Also the adaptive strategy  adapt and to stay/to live - Subsistence = base of activity of life o Pursuit of food, catching, cultivating, growing, packaging, distributing o Adaptive Strategy - Hunting-gathering/ foraging - Horticulture - Intensive Agriculture - Pastoralism - Industrial food production (1) Foraging/ Hunting-Gathering - The oldest human adaptive strategy o Dominant mode of subsistence up until 12 thousand years ago o Sometimes perceive as primitive (form a primitive perspective) o Marked a distinct human pattern, o Based on the division of labour by gender, where we require a diversity in our diet - Development system of sharing o The activity of men and women were always pooled together, that was shared o Distributing the risks of society, a way of having support during the tough times o That is why this system persist for so long - Relative proportion of hunting and gathering o Distance of the equator o - Food foraging a complex adaptation o Some foragers don’t run after their food o These are people who live in environments with a lot of marine life, like fish o Example, whale hunters, seal hunters o If environmental conditions allow for it, they will continue to settle and become foragers since food is essentially coming to them o NE Asia - Mostly nomadic life-style o They do not establish cities (where cities are a recent development of human histories) o Has been around for a very long time - Low population densities o Their population tend to be a population of their food, animal proteins ANT102H5S – Introduction to Sociocultural and Linguistic Anthropology Lecture 03 – July 18, 2013 - Families, bands o Family units tend to combine into bands o Depending on the kinship structure, variety of other things, bands tend to be flexible o You are not compelled to stay in the band (where if you have a dispute, you can leave the band) - Animism & shamanism o Animist – believe is various spirit beings o Shamanism – there is no real religious specialist, they don’t have established churches, they might just charge a small fee/ gifts for their services - Tends to do the same things o Males tend to do, 99% of the time, what all males do (same with females) o There is a society that is divided based on gender - Represents an idealized past o The ideal can be positive or negative o “Caveman” past/ era o Other idealized it in a different way, where there was harmony in societies and the development of kinship o They were very healthy people Ju/’hoansi (Botswana) - They live close to the equator, andt they live in a more relatively more complex ecosystem compared to the inuit - 30% of there food came from hunting while 70% of their food came from gathering Babenzele Pygmies (Central African Republic) - They make their own cross boats - Solo hunter is a common practice o Hunting by yourself or in pairs is very common o It all depends on the nature and ecosystem of the society Andaman Islands (India) - Ocean provided fish, marine mammals of various sorts - Able to develop a more sedentary group of life style Haida (Queen Charlotte Islands, B.C., Canada) - One of the more complex foraging society (2) Horticulture - Represents the first farming - Gardening [swidden, slash & burn, shifting cultivation] o Involves gardening either in wet tropical environments or hot dry environments ANT102H5S – Introduction to Sociocultural and Linguistic Anthropology Lecture 03 – July 18, 2013 o The most common type is the tropical horticulture  involves slash and burn o You cut down the trees and start burning the trees to create ash, which fertilizes the soil, and that is where they garden their crops (Swidden agriculture) o They move around  shifiting cultivation o Dry land gardening  rainfall gardening, planting stuff in an opening field (NOT CLEARING THE WOODS) and hoping enough rain accumulates - Crops [vegetative propagation] o Use crops that are different than grain farming o Grow by vegetative propagation  if you take a piece of a sweet potato, and plant it in the ground, more will grow o Principle limitation is that they cannot be stored for a very long time o Examples: Yam, sweet potatoes, maize, dry rice - Simple technologies [hoe, stick, knife] o Hand held technologies  hoe, sticks, knives - Extensive use of land [fallow] o Tend to only use a small percentage of the total land based (5-10%) o They can only use these gardens for a few years, after a few years, all of the nutrients are depleted from the soil o So they get up and start again somewhere else - Lineages, villages [internecine warfare] o The idea of family groups that persist for many generations o Because horticulture you have the first time that land becomes something you defend, and is the basis of your livelihood o Villages, usually 300 was a magic number, where they would undergo fission (split) o Start to have intervillage rivalry (internecine warfare  warfare that occurs between people in the same group) o Example: Yanomamo, Tsembaga Maring - Neolithic – New Stone Age o That technology is essentially a technology of horticulture o The earliest agriculture Hopi (Arizona, United States) - Maize farmers - Collect the rain, and distribute it across dry land - Used simple hand tool A swidden in Columbia - Women do day to day tendi
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