Cultural Anthropology: A Perspective on the Human Condition / Edition 8

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Cultural Anthropology: A Perspective on the Human Condition is an introductory cultural anthropology text that explores the interplay of cultural creativity, human agency, and material constraint in the shaping of human cultural traditions. By focusing on contemporary applications of anthropology, the text encourages students to think critically about culture and to view the world in new ways. The authors incorporate cutting-edge theory into solid coverage of traditional topics and pay special 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 14 chapters, the text fits well into a semester-long introductory course structure. "In Their Own Words" commentaries expose students to alternative perspectives from non-anthropologists and indigenous peoples, and "EthnoProfile" boxes provide maps and ethnographic summaries of each society discussed at length in the text. The text also features many pedagogical aids, including a running glossary, chapter summaries and key terms at chapter ends, and annotated suggestions for further reading.

· Addresses issues of power and inequality in the contemporary world-including racism, ethnic discrimination, nationalism, caste, and class
· Incorporates cutting-edge theory and gender and feminist anthropology throughout
· Takes an explicitly global approach, discussing ways in which the spread of capitalism has drastically reshaped how people everywhere live their lives
· Presents new voices and alternative perspectives from non-anthropologists and indigenous peoples through "In Their Own Words" commentaries
· Provides ethnographic summaries-with maps-of each society discussed at length in the text in "EthnoProfile" boxes
· Integrates additional helpful pedagogical aids including key terms, a running glossary, chapter summaries, maps, and annotated suggestions for further reading Covers the material in 14 chapters-an ideal text for a one-semester course

New to the Eighth Edition:
· Anthropology in Everyday Life boxes continually show students the relevance of cultural anthropology.
· For Review sections at chapter ends include discussion questions and prompts that connect chapters and support hands-on learning.
· "Arguing anthropology" critical thinking questions are available on the book's companion website.
· Complex discussions are more readable and accessible, presenting basic concepts more concretely before moving into theory and debate.
· New "In Their Own Words" commentaries expose students to alternative perspectives from non-anthropologists and indigenous peoples.
· An Instructor's Edition includes a transition guide and walk-through of the text.

· Companion Website featuring (1) Student Resources, including a study skills guide, flashcards, self-quizzes, chapter outlines, and helpful links; (2) Instructor Resources, including PowerPoint presentations for lectures, filmographies, activities, discussion questions, and guest editorials; and (3) a chapter on human evolution
· Computerized Test Bank and Instructor's Manual on CD
· Cartridges for Course Management Systems

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Cultural Anthropology avoids the dry and mundane writing style that characterizes some texts. I find the student-oriented pedagogy interactive and extremely effective. I appreciate the depth of discussion devoted to describing many of the concepts addressed-as well as the inclusion of anthropologists whose work is relevant to those concepts-and the rich and varied examples throughout the book."—Brenda Sendejo, Southwestern University

"The overall approach of this text is designed to foster inquisitive, critical thinking and to emphasize the relevance of cultural anthropology for contemporary, real-life issues. I found the student resources [on the website] extraordinarily interesting, useful, and relevant. They are stunningly good. For these reasons—as well as the affordable price—I would definitely adopt and recommend this book to my colleagues."—Harry Sanabria, University of Pittsburgh

"This text is comprehensive, and the authors reveal a good grasp of the issues. Their ability to capture and explore the latest research and current topics is particularly impressive, and one of the main reasons I adopted the book. The writing is excellent, clear, crisp, and very reader-friendly."—Meryl James-Sebro, Florida Gulf Coast University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199760060
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 1/21/2011
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 8
  • Pages: 448
  • Sales rank: 892,837
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Emily A. Schultz is Professor of Anthropology at St. Cloud State University.
Robert H. Lavenda is Professor of Anthropology and Co-Chair of the Department at St. Cloud State University.

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Table of Contents



1 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
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

Part I The Tools of Cultural Anthropology

2 Why Is the Concept of Culture Important?
How Do Anthropologists Define Culture?
Culture, History, and Human Agency
Why Do Cultural Differences Matter?
What Is Ethnocentrism?
Is It Possible to Avoid Ethnocentric Bias?
What Is 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?
The Promise of the Anthropological Perspective
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

3 How Do Cultural Anthropologists Learn about Contemporary Ways of Life?
Why Do Fieldwork?
The Fieldwork Experience
A Meeting of Cultural Traditions
Ethnographic Fieldwork: How Has Anthropologists' Understanding Changed?
Applying Positivist Methods to Anthropology
Questioning the Positivist Approach
The Reflexive Approach
Multisited Fieldwork
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
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

4 Anthropology, History, and the Explanation of Cultural Diversity
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
Unilineal Cultural Evolutionism
Social Structural Typologies: The British Emphasis
Origins in the Colonial Setting
The Classification of Political Structures
Structural-Functional Theory
Doing without Typologies: Culture Area Studies in America
Postcolonial Realities
Studying Forms of Human Society Today
The Comparative Study of Processes
Chapter Summary
Key Terms
For Review
Suggested Readings

Part II The Resources of Culture

5 Language
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?
Phonology: Sounds
Morphology: Word Structure
Syntax: Sentence Structure
Semantics: Meaning
Pragmatics: 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
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

6 Culture and Individuals
Schemas and Prototypes
Perception and Convention
Visuality: Learning to Look
Cognitive Capacities and Intelligence
Reason and the Reasoning Process
Culture and Logic
The Cultural Construction of Emotion
Emotion in Oceania
Socialization and Enculturation
The Sociohistorical View
Is Cognitive Development the Same for Everyone?
Avatars, Alts, and the Self in Second Life
How Do Violence and Trauma Alter Our View of Ourselves?
Structural Violence
Chosen Trauma
How Does Individual Psychology Depend on Context?
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

7 How Do We Make Meaning?
What Is Play?
How Do Anthropologists Think about Play?
What Are Some Effects of Play?
Do People Play by the Rules?
Culture and Sport
Sport in the Nation-State
Sport as Metaphor
Baseball and Masculinity in Cuba
What Is Art?
How Can Art Be Defined?
"But Is It Art?"
"She's Fake": Art and Authenticity
Hip-Hop in Japan
Sculpture and the Baule Gbagba Dance
The Mass Media: A Television Serial in Egypt
What Is Myth?
How Does Myth Reflect-and Shape-Social Action?
Do Myths Help Us Think?
What Is Ritual?
A Definition of Ritual
A Birthday Party as Ritual
What Is Ritual Action?
What Are Rites of Passage?
How Are Play and Ritual Complementary?
How Do Cultural Practices Combine Play, Art, Myth, and Ritual?
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

8 Worldview
What Is a Worldview?
How Do Anthropologists Study Worldviews?
What Are Some Key Metaphors for Constructing Worldviews?
Societal Metaphors
Organic Metaphors
Technological Metaphors
What Is Religion?
Religion and Communication
Religious Organization
Worldviews in Practice: Two Case Studies
Coping with Misfortune: Witchcraft, Oracles, and Magic among the Azande
Azande Witchcraft Beliefs
Dealing with Witches
Are There Patterns of Witchcraft Accusation?
Coping with Misfortune: Seeking Higher Consciousness among the Channelers
Maintaining and Changing a Worldview
How Do People Cope with Change?
The Bwiti Religion
Kwaio Religion
How Are Worldviews Used as Instruments of Power?
Is Secularism a Worldview?
Religion and Secularism
Muslim Headscarves in France: A Case Study
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

Part III The Organization of Material Life

9 Culture and Power
Who Has the Power to Act?
How Do Anthropologists Study Politcs?
Coercion in Societies without States?
Power and National Identity: A Case Study
Biopower and Governmentality
Trying to Elude Governmentality: A Case Study
The Ambiguity of Power
Power as an Independent Entity
The Power of the Imagination
The Power of the Weak
Bargaining for Reality
Marriage: Bargaining and Gender in Morocco
Peasant Resistance in Malaysia
History as a Prototype of and for Political Action
Negotiating the Meaning of History
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

10 Making a Living
Subsistence Strategies
What Are the Connections between Culture and Livelihood?
Self-Interest, Institutions, and Morals
What Are Production, Distribution, and Consumption?
How Are Goods Distributed and Exchanged?
Neoclassical Economics and Capitalism
Modes of Exchange
Does Production Drive Economic Activities?
Modes of Production
The Role of Conflict in Material Life
Applying Production Theory to Social and Cultural Life
Why Do People Consume What They Do?
The Internal Explanation: Malinowski and Basic Human Needs
The External Explanation: Cultural Ecology
Food Storage and Sharing
How Does Culture Construct Human Needs?
The Original Affluent Society
The Abominations of Leviticus
Banana Leaves in the Trobriand Islands
The Cultural Construction of Utility
Consumption Studies Today
Coca-Cola in Trinidad
The Anthropology of Food and Nutrition
Interplay between the Meaningful and the Material
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

Part IV Systems of Relationships

11 Where Do Our Relatives Come From, and Why Do They Matter?
How Do Human Beings Organize Interdependence?
What Is Friendship?
American College Student Friendship and Friendliness
What Is Kinship?
Sex, Gender, and Kinship
How Many Sexes Are There?
Understanding Different Kinship Systems
What Is the Role of Descent in Kinship
Bilateral Kindreds
Unilineal Descent Groups
What Role Do Lineages Play in Descent?
Lineage Membership
The Logic of Lineage Relationships
Matrilineality, Electoral Politics, and the Art of the Neutral Partisan
What Are Kinship Terminologies?
Criteria for Distinguishing Kin
Kinship and Alliance through Marriage
What Is Adoption?
Adoption in Highland Ecuador
How Flexible Can Relatedness Be?
Negotiation of Kin Ties among the Ju/'hoansi
Iñupiaq Relatedness
European American Kinship and New Reproductive Technologies
Compadrazgo in Latin America
How Can Practices of Relatedness Produce Unexpected Outcomes?
Conflicting Obligations among the Iteso
Assisted Reproduction in Israel
Organ Transplantation and the Creation of New Relatives
Kinship as Social Idiom
What Are Sodalities?
Secret Societies in Western Africa
Membership and Initiation
Use of the Kinship Idiom
The Thoma Secret Soceity: A Microcosm
The Meaning of Secrecy in a Secret Society
The Dimensions of Group Life
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

12 Why Do People Get Married and Have Families?
How Do Anthropologists Define Marriage?
Woman Marriage and Ghost Marriage among the Nuer
Marriage as a Social Process
Patterns of Residence after Marriage
Single and Plural Spouses
Polyandry, Sexuality, and the Reproductive Capacity of Women
Fraternal Polyandry
Associated Polyandry
Secondary Marriage
The Distinction between Sexuality and Reproductive Capacity
What Is the Connection between Marriage and Economic Exchange?
Brothers and Sisters in Cross-cultural Perspective
Brothers and Sisters in a Matrilineal Society
Brothers and Sisters in a Patrilineal Society
How Do Anthropologists Think about Family Structure
The Family Defined
The Nuclear Family
The Polygynous Family
Competition in the Polygynous Family
Extended and Joint Families
How Do Families Change over Time?
Divorce and Remarriage
Divorce in Guider
Grounds for Divorce
Separation among Inuit
Blended Families
Breaking Up Complex Households
International Migration and the Family
Families by Choice
The Flexibility of Marriage
How Do Sexual Practices Differ?
Heterosexual Practices
Other Sexual Practices
Female Sexual Practices in Mombasa
Male Sexual Practices in Nicaragua
Love, Marriage, and HIV/AIDS in Nigeria
Sexuality and Power
Key Terms
Chapter Summary
Suggested Readings

Part V From Local to Global

13 What Can Anthropology Tell Us about Social Inequality?
Caste in India
Caste Struggle in Contemporary India
Caste in Western Africa
The Value of Caste as an Analytic Category
Race in Colonial Oaxaca
Mobility in the Casta System
Colorism in Nicaragua
Nation and Nation-State
Australian Nationalism
Naturalizing Discourses
The Paradox of Essentialized Identities
Nation Building in a Postcolonial World: Fiji
Nationalism and Its Dangers
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings

14 What Can Anthropology Tell Us about Globalization?
What Happened to the Global Economy after the Cold War?
Cultural Processes in a Global World
Globalization and the Nation-State
Migration, Transborder Identities, and Long-Distance Nationalism
Flexible Citizenship and the Postnational Ethos
Anthropology and Multicultural Politics in the New Europe
Are Human Rights Universal?
Human Rights Discourse as the Global Language of Social Justice
Rights versus Culture
Rights to Culture
Rights as Culture
How Can Culture Help in Thinking about Rights?
Violence Against Women in Hawaii
Child Prostitution in Thailand
Cultural Imperialism or Cultural Hybridization?
Cultural Hybridity
Can We Be at Home in a Global World?
Border Thinking
Why Study Anthropology?
Chapter Summary
For Review
Key Terms
Suggested Readings




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