Textbook Notes (369,162)
Canada (162,429)
Anthropology (373)
ANT101H5 (118)
Chapter 1

Chapter 1 notes

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Department
Anthropology
Course Code
ANT101H5
Professor
Heather Miller

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-language diversity is a good rough measure of cultural diversity. 800 diff languages spoken in New Guinea (15% of worlds languages). Nearby villages speak diff languages -regardless of cultural variation, humans show less genetic variation than can be found in a group of wild chimpanzees -modern humans are cultural and biological beings. Unique among animals in that we ask "why?" -evolution: change in the genetic structure from one generation to the next. Frequently used to refer to the appearance of a new species -anthropology: study of human culture and evolutionary aspects of human biology. Addresses entire scope of human experience -a holistic discipline. Multiple aspects to study what it is to be human. All topics related to behaviour ( beliefs, religion, ritual, technology, economic and political systems) and biology (genetics, anatomy, skull structure, ability to adapt to disease and other factors. All the evolutionary processes that resulted in the development of modern humans) -anthropologists apply the scientific method as well as interpretive methods to achieve an understanding of human qualities such as love, individual or group identity, compassion and ethnicity Biocultural Approach -biocultural evolution: mutual, interactive evolution of human biology and culture. Concept that biology makes culture possible and that developing culture influences the direction of biological evolution. Helps give all anthropologists a shared perspective -culture: set of learned behaviours transmitted from one gen. to the next through learning -human culture is the strategy people use to adapt to the natural and social environments in which they live. Includes technology (tools, computers), subsistence patterns (hunting and gathering, agribusiness), housing types (huts, skyscrapers), clothing (animal skin, synthetic fibers) -each culture shapes people's perceptions of the external environment in particular ways that distinguish that culture from others -enculturation: the process by which individuals learn the values and beliefs of the family, peer grous, and society in which they are raised -species: a group of organisms that can interbreed to produce fertile offspring -microevolution is evolution within a population -macroevolution or speciation involves long-term genetic change that leads to appearance of new species -in humans: increased brain size, reorganization of neurological structures, decreased tooth size, development of language -adaptation: functional response of organisms or populations to the environment What is anthropology? -derived from Greek words Anthropos (human) and logos (study of) -anthropology integrates the findings of many disciplines such as sociology, economics, history, psychology and biology -4 main subfields - Cultural Anthropology -the study of all aspects of human bahaviour -beginnings rooted in the Enlightenment of the 18th century (questioned the extent to which there exists a knowable order to the natural world) -led early anthropologists to study and record ways of life that are now mostly extinct. Yielded ethnographies (detailed descriptive studies of human societies) that became the basis for comparisons between cultures -urban anthropology: subfield thatdeals with issues in inner cities -medical anthropology: subfield that explores relationship between various cultural attributes and health and disease -Biological or Physical anthropology -study of human biology within the framework of evolution with an emphasis on the interaction between biology and culture -origins in 19th century curiosity among scientists (natural historians) about how modern species came to be. Fueled by Darwin's On the Origin of Species - paleoanthropology: major subfield. Study of human evolution. Goal is to indentify major hominin species, establish chronological sequence of relationships between them and gain insights into their adaptation and behaviour -anthropometry: measurement of human body parts -some traits evolved as biological ada
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