ANTH 1002 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Mary Douglas, Commodity Fetishism, Social Fact
3 pages102 viewsFall 2018
Course CodeANTH 1002
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Social Facts (Durkheim):
● Emile Durkheim believed that anthropology could be a social science, with
an object of study "social facts" he defines social facts as "consisting of
manners, acting, thinking and feeling, external to the individual."
● Social facts are broad and include everything from political systems, to
beliefs about right and wrong, suicide rates, and art
● Explores the why of why people do things
● Powerful and coercive, and Strongs and binds society together, since they
dictate how we interact and how we relate to society.
● Lack of social integration, leads to a lack of social cohesion as society
moves from traditional to modern, people lose their interpretation and
sense of place resulting in a higher suicide rate.
Structural Functionalism Emile Durkheim:
● Society is seen as a complex system whose parts work together to promote
stability and social order.
● These parts of society are social structures, or primarily peoples behavior.
● Social functions are the norms of a society in which people fulfill roles as parents,
● Social dysfunction disrupt the function of society, disrupting the social structure of
Collective Consciousness Emile Durkheim:
● The body of beliefs that are common to a community or society and that give
people a sense of belonging, and social cohesion.
● Bushong - Mary Douglas
● A people studied in contrast to the Lele, by Mary Douglas. The Bushong excelled
in trade, technology, and in wealth, the main differences noted by Douglas were
in the marriage, diet, age gap relations, gender norms, and soil quality, however,
she concluded that the difference in financial status could be attributed to their
differing philosophies of working, the Bushong believed in working hard to
achieve wealth while the Lele believe wealth will come with age.
Commodity Fetishism - Michael T Taussig
● The perception of the social relationships involved in the production, not as
relationships among people, but as economic relationships among the money
and commodities exchanged in market trade
● A term coined by Karl Marx, originating from the word animism, a term used to
described inanimate objects with a spirit, a commonly held belief within African
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