Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 10

Dear investigator friend, AGEAC welcomes you to

the Hindustani Gnyana, to the Greek Sophia, to the

millenary Knowledge that the Great Cultures of the
past possessed. A revealing knowledge that has
allowed man to know the raison d'tre of his own
You find yourself now in the vestibule of the
sanctuary of Wisdom, in that sanctuary where men
of the stature of Confucius, Buddha, Jesus,
Solomon, Homer, Pythagoras, Plato, Socrates,
Hermes Trismegistus, Dante Alighieri, etc. studied
and practiced.
The path you have before you is enormously
gratifying, however, you need to know that it will
not be easy for you, as aspiring for wisdom is one
thing, but persevering in its quest your entire life is
another thing totally different.
There are two big obstacles that you will have to
1. On the one hand, the enormous carousel of
opportunities and sensations that life offers
you (necessary or not), that in conjunction
tend to monopolise the time of men and
2. On the other hand, a great showcase of
teachings, many of them even linked to
principles of kindness, freedom, happiness,
but which will engender in you numerous
doubts, for you will not know which one of
them participates in the truth.
But in order to overcome those impediments,
equally remember two very important things:
1. To live for living, without trying to answer
oneself: who am I, where do I come from,
where do I go, what is the purpose of my
existence, is exactly to have the eyes closed,
without ever wanting to open them. And with
hand on heart, answer yourself: can there be
anything more sad in life than wanting to
continue in darkness?
2. Only a practical knowledge that allows the
student to test for himself its precepts and
statements can lead us from the confusing
labyrinth of theories. A teaching that does not
hold practical application in life is no other
thing than a simple acrobatic of thought that
leads nowhere.
But, if you, appreciated reader, have reached this
far because the Wisdom is sweet to your soul and
you believe that there is more in life than being
born, growing up, growing old and dying, then we
invite you to take the shield of your faith and
advance with decided step, whether it be
downwind or against all winds Nevertheless,
always remember: It is not because things are
difficult that we do not dare; it is because we do
not dare that they are difficult.(Seneca)
If one does not know to which port one is sailing,
no wind is favourable
What is Anthropology?

Anthropology is the study of humans, past and present.
To understand the full sweep and complexity of cultures
across all of human history, anthropology draws and
builds upon knowledge from the social and biological
sciences as well as the humanities and physical
sciences. A central concern of anthropologists is the
application of knowledge to the solution of human
problems. Historically, anthropologists in the United
States have been trained in one of four areas:
sociocultural anthropology, biological/physical
anthropology, archaeology, and linguistics.
Anthropologists often integrate the perspectives of
several of these areas into their research, teaching, and
professional lives.
Sociocultural Anthropology
Sociocultural anthropologists examine social
patterns and practices across cultures, with a
special interest in how people live in particular
places and how they organize, govern, and create
meaning. A hallmark of sociocultural anthropology
is its concern with similarities and differences, both
within and among societies, and its attention to
race, sexuality, class, gender, and nationality.
Research in sociocultural anthropology is
distinguished by its emphasis on participant
observation, which involves placing oneself in the
research context for extended periods of time to
gain a first-hand sense of how local knowledge is
put to work in grappling with practical problems of
everyday life and with basic philosophical problems
of knowledge, truth, power, and justice. Topics of
concern to sociocultural anthropologists include
such areas as health, work, ecology and
environment, education, agriculture and
development, and social change.
Biological (or Physical) Anthropology
Biological anthropologists seek to understand how
humans adapt to diverse environments, how
biological and cultural processes work together to
shape growth, development and behavior, and
what causes disease and early death. In addition,
they are interested in human biological origins,
evolution and variation. They give primary
attention to investigating questions having to do
with evolutionary theory, our place in nature,
adaptation and human biological variation. To
understand these processes, biological
anthropologists study other primates
(primatology), the fossil record
(paleoanthropology), prehistoric people
(bioarchaeology), and the biology (e.g., health,
cognition, hormones, growth and development)
and genetics of living populations.
Archaeologists study past peoples and cultures,
from the deepest prehistory to the recent past,
through the analysis of material remains, ranging
from artifacts and evidence of past environments to
architecture and landscapes. Material evidence,
such as pottery, stone tools, animal bone, and
remains of structures, is examined within the
context of theoretical paradigms, to address such
topics as the formation of social groupings,
ideologies, subsistence patterns, and interaction
with the environment. Like other areas of
anthropology, archaeology is a comparative
discipline; it assumes basic human continuities
over time and place, but also recognizes that every
society is the product of its own particular history
and that within every society there are
commonalities as well as variation.
Linguistic Anthropology
Linguistic anthropology is the comparative study of
ways in which language reflects and influences
social life. It explores the many ways in which
language practices define patterns of
communication, formulate categories of social
identity and group membership, organize large-
scale cultural beliefs and ideologies, and, in
conjunction with other forms of meaning-making,
equip people with common cultural representations
of their natural and social worlds. Linguistic
anthropology shares with anthropology in general a
concern to understand power, inequality, and social
change, particularly as these are constructed and
represented through language and discourse.
Addressing complex questions, such as human origins,
the past and contemporary spread and treatment of
infectious disease, or globalization, requires
synthesizing information from all four subfields.
Anthropologists are highly specialized in our research
interests, yet we remain generalists in our observations
of the human condition and we advocate for a public
anthropology that is committed to bringing knowledge
to broad audiences. Anthropologists collaborate closely
with people whose cultural patterns and processes we
seek to understand or whose living conditions require
amelioration. Collaboration helps bridge social distances
and gives greater voice to the people whose cultures
and behaviors anthropologists study, enabling them to
represent themselves in their own words. An engaged
anthropology is committed to supporting social change
efforts that arise from the interaction between
community goals and anthropological research.
Because the study of people, past and present, requires
respect for the diversity of individuals, cultures,
societies, and knowledge systems, anthropologists are
expected to adhere to a strong code of professional
Anthropologists are employed in a number of different
sectors, from colleges and universities to government
agencies, NGOs, businesses, and health and human
services. Within the university, they teach
undergraduate and graduate anthropology, and many
offer anthropology courses in other departments and
professional schools such as business, education,
design, and public health. Anthropologists contribute
significantly to interdisciplinary fields such as
international studies and ethnic and gender studies,
and some work in academic research centers. Outside
the university, anthropologists work in government
agencies, private businesses, community organizations,
museums, independent research institutes, service
organizations, the media; and others work as
independent consultants and research staff for agencies
such as the Centers for Disease Control, UNESCO, the
World Health Organization, and the World Bank. More
than half of all anthropologists now work in
organizations outside the university. Their work may
involve building research partnerships, assessing
economic needs, evaluating policies, developing new
educational programs, recording little-known
community histories, providing health services, and
other socially relevant activities. You will find
anthropologists addressing social and cultural
consequences of natural disasters, equitable access to
limited resources, and human rights at the global level.
As you can see from the extensive list of
sections within the American Anthropological
Association, anthropologists have research interests
that cut across academic and applied domains of
scholarship. These domains reflect the many significant
issues and questions that anthropologists engage
today, their areas of employment, the locations around
the world where they do research, and their
commitment to using research results to improve lives.
We invite you to explore the diversity of topics and
approaches in this exciting field.