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Study_Guide_for_The_Nuer.doc

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Department
Anthropology
Course Code
ANTB19H3
Professor
Donna Young

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Study Guide for E.E. Evans-Pritchard The Nuer 1. What were the colonial conditions when E-P began his study of the Nuer? - What was the Anglo-Egyptian Condominium Government of the Sudan? - What were the consequences of their policy of divide and rule in the Sudan? - Who asked E-P to complete a study of the Nuer? Why? - Why were the Nuer hostile to the British? - What forms of violence are a direct consequence of colonial policies? 2. In evaluating an ethnography, you should begin with three questions: - How did the ethnographer gain access to the community? - How did/do the political arrangements mark the relationship between observer/observed? - What theoretical concerns motivate the study? - How do these three questions relate to E-P’s study of the Nuer. 3. What is cultural Translation? - What did E-P mean when he spoke of a Bovine idiom of speech? • Spoke in a Bovine (cow) idiom • Idiom – group of words est. by usage as having a mean, not deducible from those of the everyday words • Used cattle as an idiom to talk about things much broader than cows (i.e. love, values, kinship, marriage, politics) • Nuer tend to define all social functioning in terms of cattle • Over emphasis in cattle is found in vocab • Cows shape economy and political structures - Why did E-P argue the goal of anthropology should be interpretation rather than functionalist explanation? - What did E-P mean when he said anthropologists were “doubly alienated?” And how might that lead to forms of objectivity, or ironic awareness? 4. The Nuer - How did the ecology influence Nuer social patterns? • Transhumant people • During floods go to higher grounds, during droughts go
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