Subfields Of Anthropology: The Study Of Cultural Anthropology

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I. Anthropology Subfields
In its most basic definition, anthropology is the study of humans combining a biological and cultural perspective (MindEdge 1.05). Due to the complexity of humankind, anthropology can be broken down into four sub-fields; cultural anthropology, linguistic anthropology, archaeology, and biological/physical anthropology. Cultural anthropology is the study of how humans lived, and how their culture was handed down from generation to generation. Cultural anthropologists study a cultural society’s beliefs, ideals, artistic expression, and patterns of behavior. Basically, they study a culture through the humanities. Linguistic anthropology is the study of the structure of language and how it affects or functions in a society.
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For example, many countries have strict laws prohibiting treasonous behavior, language, or interviews toward their government. Unlike the United States, there are many countries that do not value individualistic thinking, and if an anthropologist were to release information identifying a person, or group of people that might have discussed openly how they reject the ideals of their government that person(s) could face consequences damaging to their character, or worst. For example, in Algeria and Bahrain a person(s) convicted of committing treason will face a firing squad; in Brazil and Israel treason is punishable by death through lethal injection; and in the United States, United Kingdom, Russia, and Turkey, treason is punishable through means of long prison sentences (Conway, 2013). So, as we see here, if an anthropologist were to release the information of people simply explaining how they feel they could face serious …show more content…
In every culture we see the belief in a something greater than oneself; a religious undertone so to speak. The belief in something greater than oneself has been existent for hundreds of thousands of years, and will continue to be at the top of any anthropologists list when comparing cultures. For example, the Shuar people of the Ecuadorian jungle believe in the holy spirit of Arutam. In modern society, we see a major Christian undertone. Another example is that the people of ancient Mesopotamia are thought to have believed in several gods, and goddesses. Anthropologists have discovered Ziggurats (churches, or places of worship) dating back to between 4000 and 3500 B.C., proving the theory that a universal belief in something greater than oneself has existed basically since the beginning human

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