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Jan 21 Lecture Notes.docx

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Janice Boddy

ANT207 Jan 21 2014 History of Anthropology beginning in the 19 C th - Influence of Darwinism - Stages of human social evolution (Morgan) - Linear progression from less to more complex technologies, social forms - Anthropology is a child of the enlightenment - Armchair anthropologist – read papers from home and organize the notes – attempt to put things in sequence – reports about societies that don’t use the same technology (primitive) – relied on non-systematic observations of others - Fieldwork – gathering of systematic information – all areas of life covered and understood, not just bits and pieces - Human societies in evolutionary terms – influenced by Darwin - Taking Darwin’s view and applying it to human variation where it doesn’t fit perfectly – borrowing from the science to apply to social - Biological vs social evolution - Culture is learned – one person transmits to another - Stages of human evolution – Lewis Morgan - Morgan – human societies could be organized into linear progression – hunter-gatherers least complex – most complex are European cultures that rely on agriculture - Stages, presumed to be historical o Savagery o Barbarism – land was a resource – horticulture and agriculture o Civilization o Each stage associated with particular thought/thinking – savagery = thinking magic – civilization = thinking scientifically – also associated with particular family structures and adaptations in nature etc. - Ladder of development – looking at people who lived in the here and now (19 c) as th representative of the past that all human societies have gone through – occupy different rungs on the ladder – led to most complex and advanced technological from – which is how European scholars thought about themselves – European societies were what others were compared to – other societies would be described in terms of them – so if Europeans use logic, others must be pre-logical – not used today (just roots for concept we’re looking at ) – others defind by lack vis a vis Europeans ANT207 Jan 21 2014 - Johannes Fabian – Time and the Other – HowAnthropology Makes its Object – 1983, 2002 o Reflexive – made people re-examine societies that had been observed o Translating geographic distance from Europe into temporal distance – further away from Europe you get, further back in time you go o Fabian said we shouldn’t be thinking this way o Spatial distance from Europe read as temporal distance – other not seen as coeval o Europe/the West = now, the present o Others = various times in the human past o Edward Said – Orientalism (1978) – saying the Middle East makes Europe the centre of the world – a lot of terms stem from this concept - Knowledge is always a construct, filtered through the position and power of the knower – product of a person – recognize that the knowledge we are getting is not objective – different idea of objectivity is needed where we can recognize our own position – where reflexivity stems from - still look at people’s technologies but we no longer consider them further back in history - examining the here and now - began to see how the different parts of society fit together – functionalism - Colonialism - hunter-gatherers seen as away from colonialism – but many were driven into this life by the pressures of colonialism – must consider colonials - exploitation - germs and diseases brought with people – these diseases spread through the people already in the Americas – 90% killed off because of it - when Europeans get to the centre settlements (very complex) they experienced a depopulated area, disarrayed monumental architecture – agricultural areas turned into bush – concept of these people because that of savagery – people just experienced a collapse of their societies brought on by these diseases – didn’t know that that’s what was the cause of the collapse – how do these people cope and react? - Europeans also did not realize what they had done – took the experience of that empty land as god-given – something to be made use of – empty land mythology - Control of resources used by others – including labour, land, animals etc. – resulted in slavery – imported slaves fromAfrica ANT207 Jan 21 2014 - Many colonizers thought they were doing something good – exploitation was a means of bringing enlightenment to others - Double minded – profit but also enlighten, make more productive, develop – become capitalist – this is “best” - Based on capitalism – commodity form – economic system unlike the economic systems of small-scale societies – capitalism = all means of production are deemed to be translatable – transact – items of exchange in their own right – small societies do not have the commodity form - Use value – can be used - Exchange value – valuable that can be exchanged - Valuable = medium of exchange that temporarily stores value – s
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