Chapter 4

Report
Chapter 4
The Growth of
Anthropological Theory
(Ferraro, Gary. Cultural Anthropology. An
Applied Perspective. 7th ed. (2008)
What We Will Learn
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•
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Who have been the important theorists in
cultural anthropology since the midnineteenth century?
What theories have anthropologists used to
explain cultural differences and similarities
among the peoples of the world?
How can anthropological data be used to
make large-scale comparisons among
cultures?
Anthropological Theories
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A theory is a statement that suggests a
relationship among phenomena.
Theories enable us to reduce reality to an
abstract set of principles.
Anthropological principles help us make sense
of ethnographic information from different parts
of the world.
Theories can generate hypotheses to be
tested in an empirical research investigation.
Quiz: A _____ is a statement that suggests
a relationship among phenomena.
25%
1.
2.
3.
4.
25%
25%
25%
fact
theory
hypothesis
position
1
2
3
4
Answer: 2
•
A theory is a statement that suggests a
relationship among phenomena.
Evolutionism
•
The nineteenth-century school of cultural
anthropology, represented by Tylor and
Morgan, that attempted to explain
variations in world cultures by the single
deductive theory that they all pass
through a series of evolutionary stages.
Evolutionism in Brief
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All cultures pass through the same
developmental stages in the same order.
Evolution is unidirectional and leads to
higher levels of culture.
A deductive approach is used to apply
general theories to specific cases.
Ethnocentric because evolutionists put
their own societies at the top.
Lewis Henry Morgan
•
Lewis Henry Morgan,
a nineteenth-century
evolutionist, held that
all societies pass
through certain
distinctive
evolutionary stages.
Morgan’s Evolutionary Stages
1.
Lower savagery: From the earliest forms of
humanity subsisting on fruits and nuts.
2.
Middle savagery: Began with the discovery of
fishing technology and the use of fire.
3.
Upper savagery: Began with the invention of
the bow and arrow.
Morgan’s Evolutionary Stages
4.
Lower barbarism: Began with the art of
pottery making.
5.
Middle barbarism: Began with domestication
of plants and animals in the Old World and
irrigation cultivation in the New World.
Morgan’s Evolutionary Stages
6.
Upper barbarism: Began with the smelting of
iron and use of iron tools.
7.
Civilization: Began with the invention of the
phonetic alphabet and writing.
Savagery
•
The first of three basic stages of cultural
evolution in the theory of Lewis Henry
Morgan; based on hunting and gathering.
Barbarism
•
The middle of three basic stages of a
nineteenth-century theory developed by
Lewis Henry Morgan holding that all
cultures evolve from simple to complex
systems: savagery, barbarism, and
civilization.
Diffusionism in Brief
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Societies change as a result of cultural
borrowing from one another.
A deductive approach is used by applying
general theories to explain specific cases.
Overemphasized the essentially valid idea
of diffusion.
American Historicism in Brief
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•
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Ethnographic facts must precede development
of cultural theories (induction).
Any culture is partially composed of traits
diffused from other cultures.
Direct fieldwork is essential.
Each culture is, to some degree, unique.
Ethnographers should try to get the view of
those being studied, not their own view.
Franz Boas
•
Franz Boas, the
teacher of the first
generation of cultural
anthropologists in the
United States, put the
discipline on a firm
empirical basis.
Functionalism in Brief
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Through fieldwork, anthropologists can
understand how cultures work for the individual
and the society.
Society is like a biological organism with many
interconnected parts.
Empirical fieldwork is essential.
The structure of any society contains
indispensable functions without which the
society could not continue.
Bronislav Malinowski
•
During one of the longest
uninterrupted fieldwork
experiences on record,
Bronislav Malinowski not
only set the standard for
conducting fieldwork but
also developed an
important new way of
looking at cultures known
as functionalism.
Gerald Murray
•
Working for USAID,
anthropologist Gerald
Murray applied what
he knew about
Haitian farmers to
make the nationwide
reforestation project
wildly successful.
British Functionalists
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Malinowski and Radcliffe-Brown were
strong advocates of fieldwork.
Concentrated on how contemporary
cultures meet the needs of individuals and
perpetuate the society.
All parts of a culture are interconnected
so a change in one part of the culture is
likely to bring about change in other parts.
Psychological Anthropology in
Brief
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Anthropologists need to explore the
relationships between psychological and
cultural variables.
Personality is largely the result of cultural
learning.
Universal temperaments associated with
males and females do not exist.
Psychological Anthropology
•
Psychological
anthropologists are
interested in questions
such as how the
television-watching
habits of children affect
their personality
structure, and how these
personalities affect other
parts of the culture.
Margaret Mead
•
Margaret Mead
devoted much of her
long and
distinguished career
in anthropology to the
study of how culture
affects the process of
growing up.
Psychological Anthropologists
Benedict and Mead
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Interested in exploring relationship between
culture and the individual.
Benedict described whole cultures in terms of
individual personality characteristics.
Mead’s early research brought her to Samoa to
study emotional problems associated with
adolescence.
Later she studied male and female gender roles
in New Guinea.
Neoevolutionism in Brief
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Cultures evolve in proportion to their
capacity to harness energy.
Culture is shaped by environmental
conditions.
Human populations continuously adapt to
techno-environmental conditions.
Quiz: Holding that humans are basically uninventive,
_____ is a theory that claims certain cultural features
were invented in one or several parts of the world, and
then spread to other cultures.
25%
1.
2.
3.
4.
25%
25%
25%
cultural materialism
structural
functionalism
diffusionism
evolutionism
1
2
3
4
Answer: 3
•
Holding that humans are basically
uninventive, diffusionism is a theory that
claims certain cultural features were
invented in one or several parts of the
world, and then spread to other cultures.
Quiz: Claude Levi-Strauss' _____ concentrates on
identifying the mental structures that undergird
social behavior.
25%
1.
2.
3.
4.
25%
25%
25%
American historicism
French structuralism
structural
functionalism
economic
determinism
1
2
3
4
Answer: 2
•
Claude Levi-Strauss' French
structuralism concentrates on identifying
the mental structures that undergird social
behavior.
Anthropological Theories and
Their Proponents
School
Major Assumption
Advocates
Evolutionism
All societies pass
through a series
of stages.
Tylor, Morgan
Diffusionism
All societies
change as a result
of cultural
borrowing,
Graebner, Smith
Anthropological Theories and
Their Proponents
School
Major Assumption
Advocates
Functionalism
Understand how
cultures work for wellbeing of the individual.
Malinowski
Structural
functionalism
Determine how
cultural elements
function for the wellbeing of the society.
Radcliffe-Brown
Anthropological Theories and
Their Proponents
School
Psychological
anthropology
Neoevolutionism
Major Assumption
Show the
relationship among
psychological and
cultural variables.
Cultures evolve in
proportion to their
capacity to harness
energy.
Advocates
Benedict, Mead
White, Steward
Anthropological Theories and
Their Proponents
School
Major Assumption
French
structuralism
Human cultures are
shaped by
preprogrammed
codes of the human
mind.
Ethnoscience
Cultures must be
described in terms of
native categories.
Advocates
Lévi-Strauss
Sturtevant,
Goodenough
Anthropological Theories and
Their Proponents
School
Major Assumption
Advocates
Harris
Cultural
materialism
Material conditions
determine human
consciousness
and behavior.
Postmodernism
Human behavior
comes from how
people perceive and
classify their world.
Geertz

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