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Anthro Midterm


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Ju'hoansi (Bushmen)
Most studied, lots of leisure & food resources, relatively rich diet, eat mondongo nuts
Kung bushmen
Kalahari Desert
*"Eating Christmas in the Kalahari" R. Lee - Anthropologist gets big, black ox Bushmen at Christmas to repay them for their cooperation. He gets ridiculed by tribe for his choice of ox. It is just a joke in the end, they do this to control arrogance. There are no totally generous acts.
*"Hunters: Scare resources in the Kalahari" - foraging group study by r.lee, veggies rather than meat. they spend little time collecting (every 3-4 days, not nomadic) & live long fruitful lives despite harsh conditions of desert. They lack firearms, livestock, agriculture - have waterholes & mondongo nuts
bilateral kinship=mother & father's relatives are equal
descent-blood relatives, affinity-inlaws or through marriage
Most cultures in the world are unilineal, (patri/matrilineal)
4 Fields of anthropology
1. cultural 2. linguistics 3. archeology 4. physical
Frank Boas
wrote book about language & culture, After 1899 Battle of Wounded Knee (death of Indian pop.)He trained other field workers, Sent out to do "recall" anthropology
Purist - must learn culture
writing about a group of people: bias (anthros try to look at things universally while still comparing cultures)
compares ethnological research: different cultures
George Hunt
Boas' friend, Boas taught him Indian language so he could record
Edward Curtis
Photographer of Indians in US & Canada. Contrast to Boas, he posed people doing traditions - Work done when Indian population&culture began to die.
Claude Levi-Strauss
French philosopher of structuralism
Alfred Kroeber
Boas trained other field workers (Kroeber) to make "life masks" - plaster of faces.
redistributes food
Bias due to one's culture and it is impossible to detach from-- Boas believed in cultural relativity (judge cultures based on their rules)
Marvin Harris
cultural materialism
ecological anthropologist
Patrick Murdoch
1179 cultures, 71% are patrilineal
All cultures are male dominant
Arnold Van Gennup
All rites of passage have 1. seperation 2. transition 3. reincorporation
Victor Turner
Liminality is what is inbetween the rites of passage
Ethnographic Record
all cultures documented since beginning of anthropology by salvage or participant observation because of Boas
Material Culture
Field Work - things that can be assessed, data, statistics, geneology
- no such thing as primitive language (Linguistic Relativity)
*"Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis" Thomson: Language mirrors reality. Words from different languages cannot be translated directly. Describes Benjamin Lee Whorf’s theory that language does not mirror reality, instead language shapes reality. It determines their perception on the world. People can think about only what their language can describe or express.
Steven Pinker, Deborah "genderlect" Tannen
Post Maritial Residence
Neolocal (go to own house), Patrilocal (live with husbands's family), Uvunculocal (wive's uncle)
"universal taboo"
cross cousins- father's sister's son
parallel cousins- father's brother's son
sexual dimorphism=differences between sexes, honor/shame complex=have to be virgin so the identity of father is certain
*"Society & Sex Roles" Friedl - males always have more power (hunter-gatherer), women-run culture has never been founded
*"A Woman's Curse?" Beverly Straussen & West African Dogon - menstruating women are evicted, admonished, excluded and sleep seperately. Tribe makes them crowd together at night seperately, shows which women are pregnant - helps men keep track of multiple wives
Life Cycle
Rites of Passage... 1.Birth 2. Puberty (vision quest) 3. Marriage 4. Death
Most cultures mark by ritual
James Spradley & David McCurdy
Authors of Conformity & Conflict articles
Participant Observation
live/experience... informant= volunteer informants are not the best sources
"Recall" Anthropology
Boas sent out to salvage: remember old times & listen to stories through translators and record. (not always accurate but still valuable)
Optimal Foraging Theory
looks at the resources available in the environment and asks what food combination gives the highest nutritional and caloric benefits for the lowest energy expenditure. (mondongo nuts)
monogamy, polygamy (polygyny-wives, polyandry-husbands)
Image of Limited Good
that peasants are secretive, jealous, paranoid
Evil Eye
*"Shakespeare in the Bush"
Bohannan wants to prove that Hamlet is universal by telling story to the Tiv tribe of West Africa. They don’t understand many of the “necessary” components of the story such as leaders, wives, omens, and ghosts due to conflicts of culture. The Tiv interpret the events and motives in Hamlet with their own cultural knowledge: giving it, according to them, a fixed true meaning (a different version.)
*"Cross Cultural Law: Case of Gypsy Offender"
Anne Sutherland & gypsy social security #... each society has substantive law that defines right from wrong. When jailed: identification (shares family info, ID has no meaning for gypsies), jail cleanliness conflicts religion (state of food, marime=rejection from culture), not with culture (cognatic descent group), English as 2nd language.
*"Life Without Chiefs"
evolution of politcal leadership, 98% of our existance is as nomads, developed from headmen without enforcing/punishing powers, needed control of natural resources, redistribution power is given to Big Man --> chief (keeps extra food, does not need to work, viewed as office of trust, passes on title)
*"Reciprocity & the power of giving"
important exchange system in every society, Lee cronk: giving is to strengthen or create friendships, fight/flatten people, gain prestige/position, place others in debt/gain loyalty.
gifts nurture long term relationships, embaress rivals... anthropologists give gifts to people they are studying (OX)
Reciprocation: at once (end relationship), delayed (longer&stronger), doesn't have to be equal (trade w/people not things), Gifts as weapons (swapping of knowledge, international donors)
*Mother's Love: Death Without Weeping
Brazilian shantytown, see indiffernce as a cultural response to high rates of infant death due to poverty & malnutrition. Mothers only emotionally attach after survival is sure, Life expectancy=40 years, 1 million under 5 die each year in Brazil, babies: contaminated, left home alone... Mingua (problems early on)... Zezino (authors helps neglected child & returns to mOm)
Infant death is fated or inevitable, just wait for it. ~Tears will dampen the wings of little angel and cannot fly to heaven, would be wrong to weep for child "claimed by saint," Grief is a form of madness that shows a lack of faith
No baby birth documentation, free coffins, church turns them away the dying for ceremonies/baptisms

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