History and theory in anthropology pdf
Decanonizing Anthropology – FootnotesHistory and Theory , Theme Issue 50 December , Accordingly, the metaphor has ontological, epistemological, moral, aesthetic, as well as methodological connotations. In a broad survey of nineteenth- and twentieth-century historical theory, this article nonetheless attempts to show that distance has been a major, if seldom explicitly articulated, theme in European and American philosophy of history. In doing so, it pays special attention to those few authors who in recent years have taken up the metaphor for critical study. Finally, the paper summarizes some of the main arguments put forward in the articles comprising this issue on historical distance. In common usage, historical distance refers to a position of detached observation made possible by the passage of time.
Cultural anthropology is a branch of anthropology focused on the study of cultural variation among humans. It is in contrast to social anthropology , which perceives cultural variation as a subset of the anthropological constant. Cultural anthropology has a rich methodology , including participant observation often called fieldwork because it requires the anthropologist spending an extended period of time at the research location , interviews , and surveys. One of the earliest articulations of the anthropological meaning of the term " culture " came from Sir Edward Tylor who writes on the first page of his book: "Culture, or civilization, taken in its broad, ethnographic sense, is that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society. Gordon Childe , with culture forming an umbrella term and civilization becoming a particular kind of culture.
Historical Theories of Anthropology
Diffusionism From Encyclopedia of Social and Cultural Anthropology Fundamental to anthropological inquiry in the late nineteenth century was the task of explaining similarities observed in the habits and beliefs of so-called primitives all over the world. The relationship between Marxism and anthropology has been both fruitful and often antagonistic. - History of anthropology in this article refers primarily to the 18th- and 19th-century precursors of modern anthropology. The term anthropology itself, innovated as a New Latin scientific word during the Renaissance , has always meant "the study or science of man".
Evolutionary anthropology provides a powerful theoretical framework for understanding how both current environments and legacies of past selection shape human behavioral diversity. This integrative and pluralistic field, combining ethnographic, demographic, and sociological methods, has provided new insights into the ultimate forces and proximate pathways that guide human adaptation and variation. Here, we present the argument that evolutionary anthropological studies of human behavior also hold great, largely untapped, potential to guide the design, implementation, and evaluation of social and public health policy. Focusing on the key anthropological themes of reproduction, production, and distribution we highlight classic and recent research demonstrating the value of an evolutionary perspective to improving human well-being. The challenge now comes in transforming relevance into action and, for that, evolutionary behavioral anthropologists will need to forge deeper connections with other applied social scientists and policy-makers.