Cultural Anthropology : A Perspective on the Human Condition

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  • Edition: 7th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2008-03-31
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
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Now more accessible and student-friendly in this full-color seventhedition, Cultural Anthropology: A Perspective on the Human Condition exploreshow cultural creativity, human agency, and the material conditions of everydaylife interact together to shape human cultural practices. It stressescontemporary applications and human narratives across cultures, focusing on howpeople bring meaning to the world and transform it through practical action.Offering solid coverage of traditional topics, the authors incorporatecutting-edge theory and explain complex ideas in accessible language. They payspecial attention to issues of power and inequality in the contemporary world,including gender inequalities, racism, ethnic discrimination, nationalism,caste, and class. Covering the material in fifteen concise chapters, Cultural Anthropologyis ideal for introductory courses. It exposes students to alternativeperspectives from non-anthropologists and indigenous peoples through "In TheirOwn Words" commentaries, and it provides ethnographic summaries of each societydiscussed at length in the text in "EthnoProfile" boxes. The text also featuresmany pedagogical aids including key terms, a running glossary, chaptersummaries, maps, and annotated suggestions for further reading. An Instructor'sManual and Computerized Test Bank and a Companion Website atwww.oup.com/us/culturalanthro provide additional helpful resources, including astudent guide with extensive study skill tips and chapter review tests.

Table of Contents

The Anthropological Perspective
What Is Anthropology?
What Is the Concept of Culture?
What Makes Anthropology a Cross-Disciplinary Discipline?
Biological Anthropology
Cultural Anthropology
Linguistic Anthropology
Applied Anthropology
Medical Anthropology
The Uses of Anthropology
The Tools Of Cultural Anthropology
Culture and the Human Condition
How Do Anthropologists Define Culture?
What Is the Place of Culture in Explanations of the Human Condition?
Dualism, Idealism, and Materialism
Culture, History, and Human Agency
What Does It Mean to Be Human?
Holistic Explanations
Why Do Cultural Differences Matter?
The Cross-Cultural Relationship
Cultural Relativism
How Can Cultural Relativity Improve Our Understanding of Controversial Cultural Practices?
Genital Cutting, Gender, and Human Rights
Genital Cutting as a Valued Ritual
Culture and Moral Reasoning
Did Their Culture Make Them Do It?
Does Culture Explain Everything?
Writing against Culture
Culture Change and Cultural Authenticity
Culture and the Politics of Difference
The Promise of the Anthropological Perspective
FieldworkWhy Do Fieldwork?
The Fieldwork Experience
A Meeting of Cultural Traditions
Ethnographic Fieldwork
How Has Anthropologists Understanding Changed?
The Positivist Approach
Applying Positivist Methods to Anthropology
Questioning the Positivist Approach
The Re flexive Approach
What Is the Dialectic of Fieldwork?
Interpretation and Translation
Beyond the Dialectic
The Dialectic of Fieldwork
Some Examples
Ruptures in Communication
How Have Global Changes Affected Fieldwork?
The Effects of Fieldwork
How Does Fieldwork Affect the Researcher?
The Humanizing Effects of Fieldwork
Where Does Anthropological Knowledge Come From?
Anthropological Knowledge as Open-Ended
Anthropology in History and the Explanation of Cultural Diversity
Where Do Cultural Traditions Begin?
Capitalism, Colonialism, and the Origins of Ethnography
Capitalism and Colonialism
The Fur Trade in North America
The Slave and Commodities Trades
Colonialism and Modernity
The Colonial Political Economy
Anthropology and the Colonial Encounter
What Explains Human Cultural Variation?
Evolutionary Typologies
The Nineteenth Century
Social Structural Typologies
The British Emphasis
Doing without Typologies
Culture Area Studies in America
Postcolonial Realities
Studying Forms of Human Society Today
The Comparative Study of Processes
The Resources Of Culture
Why Do Anthropologists Study Language?
Language and Culture
Talking about Experience
What Makes Human Language Distinctive?
What Does It Mean to Learn a Language?
Language and Context
Does Language Affect the Way We See the World?
What Are the Components of Language?
Word Structure
Sentence Structure
Language in Contexts of Use
What Happens
When Languages Come into Contact?
Pidgin and Creole
Negotiating Meaning
Linguistic Inequality
Language Habits of African Americans
Language Ideology
Language Habits of Women and Men
What Is Lost If a Language Dies?
Language and Truth
Culture and Individuals
Schemas and Prototypes:Perception and Convention
Learning to Look
Cognitive Capacities and Intelligence
Cognitive Style
Reason and the Reasoning Process
Culture and Logic
EmotionThe Cultural Construction of Emotion
Emotion in an Eastern African Culture
Emotion in Oceania
MotivationSocialization and Enculturation
The Sociohistorical View
Is Cognitive Development the Same for Everyone?
How Do Violence and Trauma Alter Our View of Ourselves?
Structural Violence
Chosen Trauma
How Does Individual Psychology Depend on Context?
Play, Art, Myth, and RitualWhy Play?
Thinking about Play
Some Effects of Play
Alternative Views of Reality
Do People Play by the Rule
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