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42 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
Egalitarian society
no individual or group is barred from access to material resources or has power over others, but everyone is not necessarily equal/ usually operate on the principle of generalized or balanced reciprocity in the exchange of goods and services; inheritance ≠ power; associated with forms of political organization, like bands or tribes.
Cultural Relativism
a ppl’s values and customs must be understood in terms of the culture of which they are a part; anthropologists have to keep from judging ppl so they can have a more accurate view of culture; no right/wrong.
Franz Boas
emphasized more fieldwork; gathered data on native American cultures, esp. in pacific northwest; felt anthropology meant complete/objective gathering of ethnographic data on specific cult. systems; understanding culture only thru fieldwork; also considered founder of modern American anthropology.
Bronislaw Malinowski
Fieldwork in trobriand islands; ethnographer should grasp native’s POV, anthro should learn to think, feel, behave like diff member to understand them; this done only thru fieldwork, live w/ ppl, observe behavior, etc; was a functionalist; believed culture was about meeting basic needs of people, like food, reproduction, this maintains stability in culture.
Brought on by fieldwork of boas and Malinowski; philosophical system concerned w/pos facts and phenomena and excluding speculation on origins or ultimate causes, this was an empirical science approach (based on attempts to observe and record presumed objective reality).
Postmodern Turn/postmodernism
no single objective reality but many partial truths or cultural constructions, depending on one’s frame of reference; why, how, what goals cultural anthropologists have done ethnographies; focus on issues of history, power and voice; emphasis on observing participation, fieldwork now more dialogue, between ethnographer and native informant, not ethno alone.
Ranked Society
formal differences among individuals and groups in prestige and symbolic resources; differences may be inherited, no important restrictions on access to basic resources, all individuals can obtain necessary material for survival thru their membership in kinship groups; based on horticulture or pastoralism; assoc. w/chiefdom.
Native anthropologist
anthropologists who studies and does fieldwork in own society.
Population Density
the # of ppl inhabiting a given area of land; have effects on enviro.
food-getting strategy depending on care of domesticated herd animals; supports small # of ppl; can be transhumant or nomadic (whole social group and animals move in search of pasture); balance present need with future herd production; based on patrilineal kinship.
pastoralist pattern in which herd animals are moved regularly throughout the year to different areas as pasture becomes available.
Horticulture/extensive cultivation
production of plants using a simple, nonmechanized technology; fields are not used continuously; low pop densities; dry lands can be used-swidden (slash and burn) method- where field cleared by burning trees and bushes; diverse cultures; most move fields; some permanent residents.
examining society using concepts, categories, rules derived from science; an outsider’s perspective, which produces analyses that members of the society being studied may not find meaningful.
examining society using concepts, categories, and distinctions that are meaningful to members of that culture, how cultures look from inside to think and act like native.
Multilinear Evolution/neo-evolutionism (prob not on exam)
concerned w/historical change of culture from small-scale societies to extremely large-scale societies; adaptive responses to problems in reproduction and survival; ppl assoc w/it: Leslie White, Julian Steward, Marvin Harris.
Conflict Theory
a perspective on social stratification that focuses on inequality as a source of conflict and change; Karl Marx/Max Weber; ppl w/power, wealth, prestige use assets and power to control the state, mainly institutions of coercion and ideology; conflict theorists may sometimes ignore things that promote solidarity across caste, ethnic, and class lines.
Karl Marx
relationship of ppl to the means of production is critical to determine how much power and prestige they have; argued priority of economic/class interests; said wealthy usu. more powerful.
Max Weber
Ppl may value prestige and the symbolic aspects of status even more than their economic position; political action can be motivated by a group’s desire to defend its social position and/or in opposition to, its economic self-interest. (ex: in South, poor whites didn’t join poor blacks for improving working conditions, b/c more committed to maintaining status diff based on color and race).
Unilineal Theory
all cultures put on one continuum; complex cultures were once like simple cultures, but moved beyond them; indiv. cultural histories don’t matter.
Diffusion Theory
concerned w/issues of contact, change, exchange, spread; culture spread thru migration, trade, war and conquest, inter-marriage exploration, cultures spread and absorb other cultural influences; ex: agriculture, iron smelting; cultures located on major trade routes tend to change more rapidly.
Achieved status
a social position that a person chooses or achieves on his or her own; usually in open systems.
Structuralism/structural anthropology
all cultures reflect similar deep, underlying patterns and anthropologists should attempt to decipher these patterns; comparison of myths and beliefs to isolate patterns; tend to divide everything into 2 opposite classes.
Worlds System Theory
Economic and political connections that tie the world’s countries together.
The scientific observers’ objectification of structure as well as strategy was seen as placing the actors in a framework not of their own making but one produced by the observer.
(intensive cultivation) A form of food production in which fields are in permanent cultivation using plows, animals, and techniques of soil and water control.
Culture Area
a region characterized by homogeneity in culture and environment; also a geographical area in which one culture prevails during a specific time.
based on birth and cannot move from one caste to another; remember these: Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas, Shudras, Harijans for caste system in India.
The custom of marrying outside the tribe, family, clan, or other social unit.
Focus on the environment and make lives secure; Leslie White.
Social Stratification
Inequality in society; it is characterized by formal, permanent social economic inequality in which some people are denied access to basic resources.
Daniel Brinton
first anthropologist in the US. He believed in social Darwinism, which used anthropology to justify racism. He was largely responsible for changing anthropology from a romantic pastime to an academic discipline. He assimilated the current sociopolitical ideas about race and gender and restated them as science.
Structural Functionalism
Culture is a living organism grouped and organized into a system, where the function of the various parts is to keep the essential processes going and enable the system to reproduce. A.R. Radcliffe Brown, Bronislaw Malinowski
E.B. Tylor
Introduced the concept of culture as an explanation of the differences among human societies. His definition: culture is the “complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, law, morals, custom, and any other capabilities learned by man as a member of society.”
Savagery, barbarism
Within the evolutionary hierarchy, the most inferior were the savages. Spencer tried to scientifically affirm the association of black with evil and savagery.
explain what, where, why, and how things occurred.
L.H. Morgan
Use the presidency of the AAAS as a bully pulpit to validate and legitimate ethnology in the US. About the development of human society, he argued that the road to civilization passed through a series of stages, each with its own distinctive culture and mode of subsistence.
A.R. Radcliffe-Brown
a functionalist who tried to demonstrate the ways in which separate parts of society affected each other and operated together. He argued that religion reinforced the social structure of a society by giving individuals a sense of dependence, reinforcing the notion that people receive comfort and succor from society but must submit to its control.
A mutual or cooperative interchange of favors or privileges, especially the exchange of rights or privileges of trade between nations.
Accumulation of goods or labor by a particular person or in a particular place and their subsequent distribution.
A society which social ranking in which political integration is achieved through an office of centralized leadership called the chief.
People who does hunting and gathering. They gather food and it does not involve food production and domestication of animals.
Participant Observation
Technique of gathering on human cultures by living among the people observing their social interaction on an ongoing daily basis, and participating as much as possible in their lives. This is the heart of anthropological fieldwork.