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Anthropology 1026F/G Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Lewis H. Morgan, James Hutton, Cultural Anthropology


Department
Anthropology
Course Code
ANTH 1026F/G
Professor
Lisa Hodgetts
Study Guide
Midterm

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WEEK ONE: INTRODUCTION AND HISTORICAL BACKGROUND
(CHAPTERS ONE & TWO)
October-19-10
6:26 PM
What are the four subfields of anthropology? What aspects of humanity
are studied within each of the subfields? What do the four subfields have
in common?
The four subfields of anthropology are:
-cultural anthropology
-focuses on the behaviour and seeking to understand the nature of culture and its variety among
different societies
-anthropology linguistics
-focuses on the issues such as evolution of speech, the historical connections between various
human language systems and the ways in which language affects our perception of the world
-archaeology
-studies the past, material remains, physical traces and written material
-biological/physical anthropology
-focuses on living organisms that are subject to biological processes that affect all other organisms
**All branches of anthropology work together toward a common goal: understanding the human
species**
What is the scientific method, and how does it function?
+scientific method: the process by which phenomena are explained through observation and the
development and testing of hypothesis
-is normally predicted on observations of the real world, generalizations from those observations
and tests of those generalizations from those observations and tests of those observations.
Hypothesises are induced then suggesting what specific data should be found if a general
explanation is supposed to be true is called deduction.
How does science differ from myth?
+myths: a story, usually invoking the supernatural, to account for some aspect of the world
+science: the method of inquiry that attempts to explain phenomena through observations and the
development and testing of hypotheses
How does observational science differ from experimental science? What
problems are faced by observational scientists like anthropologists?
-experimental science: recreate natural settings (chem)
-observational science: based on detailed observation in nature and an attempt to discern patterns
(astronomy)
-objectivity is hard but necessary to believe
-bias will always remain because people are studying people
What contributions did James Hutton and Charles Lyell make to modern
geology, and how did this contradict the dominant Christian worldview?
Ussher through reference to biblical detail, astronomical cycles and historical records determined that
the word was created in the year 4004 BC.

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-James Hutton explicitly advanced the notion that by studying natural processes such as erosion and
weathering - we could explain the earth's geology and geography
-God created the earth as what we today would call a self-regulating system
-suggested that the earth was a least hundreds of thousands of years old
-went against Ussher (Christian worldview because he was a bishop)
-Lyell on the other hand was an advocate of uniformitarianism
-"the past is the key to the present"
-measured that the earth was 100 000 years old
*their work was attacked because it contradicted the accepted interpretation of Genesis
What contributions did Linnaeus, Lamarck, Darwin and Wallace make to
modern biology?
-Linnaeus was a creationist
-believed that the world and all its inhabitants had been divinely created and had undergone no
change
-looked at the similarities and differences among plants and animals to develop a process called
comparative biology
-made a system of classification still used today called taxonomy
-Lamarck coined the term biology; French naturalist
-believed that plants and animals adapted to their surroundings (CORRECT)
-went astray in his beliefs that evolution was progressive; meaning that organisms became
increasingly more complex and more perfect
-also wrong with his idea of inheritance of acquired traits which stated that when the environment
changes, organisms perceive the change and use, cease using or even create organs necessary to
alter their adaptation. The effects of this use, disuse or creation of new organs are automatically
passed on to succeeding generations.
-Darwin and Wallace as a result of two separate world travels noticed that
-individual organisms within a species exhibit variation
-similarities and differences among organisms represent biological relationships from their
descent form previous organisms
-came up with the theory of natural selection
-based on the premise that organisms are adapted to their environments and undergo
adaptive change when the environments change (variation already exists)
-nature selects from the exisiting variation within a species in the sense that those
individuals who by chance are best adapted to their environment conditions are the most
reproductively succesful; they rpoduce the most offspring that survive and so pass on their
adaptie traits to more offspring. As a result the most adaptive traits of the species tent to
increase in frequency
How were early concepts of cultural evolution influenced by ideas from
geology and biology? How does our current understanding of culture
change differ from ideas proposed in the late nineteenth century and the
mid-twentieth century?

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Key terms/concepts/people:
+myths: a story, usually invoking the supernatural, to account for some aspect of the world
+science: the method of inquiry that attempts to explain phenomena through observations and the
development and testing of hypotheses
+creation myth: a myth that explains the origin of the world and its inhabitants
+evolution: the systematic change over time of organisms or social systems
+myths: a story, usually invoking the supernatural, to account for some aspect of the world
+science: the method of inquiry that attempts to explain phenomena through observations and the
development and testing of hypotheses
+evolution: the systematic change over time of organisms or social systems
+scientific method: the process by which phenomena are explained through observation and the
development and testing of hypotheses
+induction: developing a general explanation from specific observations
+hypotheses: a testable explanation of a phenomenon
+deduction: the process o suggesting specific data that would be found if a hypothesis were true
-only when we are unsuccessful after applying our best efforts to show that our preliminary
explanations are wrong, do we conclude that , at least so far, it looks like our hypothesis actually
explains the phenomenon we are examining
+theory: a hypothesis that has been well supported by evidence and experimental testing
+anthropology: the holistic and integrative scientific study of the human species
+species: a group of organism that can produce fertile offspring among themselves but not with any
other group
+holistic: a study that views its subject as a whole made of integrated parts
+cultural anthropology: the branch of anthropology that focuses cultural behaviour
+culture: the non-genetic means of adaptation; those things people invent or develop and pass down
+anthropological linguistics: the branch of anthropology that focuses on language
+archaeology: the branch of anthropology that focuses on cultural evolution through the study of
material remains of
past societies
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