The subfields of anthropology

Flashcards
The Traditional Subfields of anthropology
1. Biological Anthropology
2. Archeology
3. Cultural Anthropology
4. Linguistic Anthropology
Why does american anthro traditionally have four subfields
Logical: the aim of anthropology- the whole of the human condition
Historical: Early American Anthros interest in the native peoples of North America. The first four- field anthro department in the usa was established at columbia university
Biological Anthropology
studies the biological adaptation and variation of human beings, other non-human primates, and extinct hominin ancestors of the human species
The major subfields of biology
1. Primatology
2. Paleo anthropolgy
3. Human Adaptation and Variation
4. Forensics
Primatology
it studies the evolution, anatomy, adaptation and social behavior of primates ex: chimpanzees tool using behavior
Paleo anthropolgy
it investigates human biological evolution, that is, how and why the human species evolved from prehuman ex: compare to dnas to determine the common ancestor of two or more species
Human adaptation and variation
it studies how and why human populations vary physically due to genetic changes caused by adaption to different environments ex: people living in high altitudes ten to have relatively large lungs high levels of hemoglobin
Forensics
It uses the techniques developed to study ancient human skeletal remains to solve modern crimes and aid human rights investigators. Ex: the body farm project by bill bass
Archeology
reconstructs, describes, and interprets human behavior and cultural patterns through material remains
The major subfields of archeology
1. Prehistoric Archeology
2. Historic Archeology
Prehistoric Archeology
It studies the lives and societies of people who had no writing to keep records of their activities customs and beliefs ex: study plan and animal remains for information about early agriculture
Historic Archeology
it studies the past of literate peoples through excavation of sites and analysis of artifacts and other material remains. Ex: underwater archeology, garbology by william rathje
Cultural Anthropology
Studies how variation in the beliefs and behaviors of members of different human groups is shaped by culture, that is, by sets of learned behaviors and ideas that human beings acquire as members of soceity
Traditional Topics
Sex and genders, kinship, family and marriage, social organization, religion, art
New research trends
Industrial societies
Globalization
Ethnography
A description of a particular community, society, or culture. It refers to both the research product of an anthropologists, which can be in the form of a book, article and film, and a research method, which focuses on a particular group.
Ethnology
The comparative study of two or more cultures or socieities.
Linguistic Anthropology
studies human languages in their social and cultural contexts, across space and over time.
The major subbranches/ major research areas of linguistic anthro
Historical linguistics
Sociolinguistics
Applied Anthropology
Use information gathered from the other anthropological specialties to propose solutions to practical problems
Major subbranches of applied anthro
Forensic anthro, community development, cultural resource management, medical anthro
How do the subfields integrate with and enrich one another to produce a better understanding of human life?
linguistic anthro + cultural anthro
Linguistic pattern of a specific social group
biological anthro + linguistic anthro
The origin of human languages
Biological anthro + archeology
Location of an ancient group
The many issues studied by applied anthropology

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