ANTA02H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Emic And Etic
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Introduction to Anthropology
Week 2, Lecture 2; Monday January 12th 2014
•What is culture? And how do anthropologists investigate it?
•Fieldwork and ethnography
•Fieldwork as rite of passage
•Edward Tylor, James Frazer, Bronislaw Malinowski, Franz Boas
•Ethnocentrism and Cultural Relativism
Fieldwork and ethnography:
•Object of Anthropological Study: Culture
•“If you want to understand what anthropology is, look at what anthropologists do.
Above all else, what anthropologists do is ethnography” (Monaghan and Just
•Ethnography (what anthropologists write) is, in turn, is based on fieldwork
What does ethnography/fieldwork accomplish?
•Culture from “the native’s point of view” (Malinowski; Geertz)
•Thick description (Geertz again)
•Context for knowledge about culture
•“Live for extended periods with the people they are trying to understand”
•Field work is what we do, ethnography is what we write
•Natives point of view a.k.a emic (insider perspective)
•Etic (outsider perspective)
Brief history of Anthropology
•Philosophers and various explorers as “proto-anthropologists”
•Victorian anthropology (Tylor and Frazer): evolutionary, hierarchy of
•Comparative, second-hand accounts
•“Off the Verandah” first to actually join field work and not only observe
•Studied in Papua New Guinea
•Two years of extensive experience in a single community
•Went back to England and taught the significance of actually doing field work
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