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Welcome to

Introduction Anthropology
ANT 101
Dr. Zev Gottdiener

Anthropology
Anthropos: Human
Ology: The study of

Five subfields of
anthropology
Physical anthropology

Archeology
Linguistic anthropology
Cultural anthropology
Applied Anthropology
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Major Goals
of anthropological inquiry
To understand the uniqueness and
diversity of human behavior and
societies around the world in both the
past and the present.
To discover the fundamental
similarities that link human beings
throughout the world in both the past
and the present.

Physical Anthropology
Concerned with humans as biological
species
Related to the natural sciences
Concerns:
Human evolution
Modern human variation
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Physical subfields

Biological anthropology
Forensic anthropology
Poleoanthropology
Human anatomy & taxonomy
Population genetics
Paleopathology
Primatology
Human ecology
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Archaeology
Examines the material traces of past
societies
Informs us about the culture of those
societies
culture refers to the shared way of life of a
group of people that includes their values,
beliefs, and norms.
Also concerned with how the material past
affects contemporary societies.

Archaeological subfields

Prehistoric
Historical
Classical
Demographic
Biblical
Maritime
Underwater
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Linguistic Anthropology
Focuses on the relationship between
language and culture, how language
is used within society, and how the
human brain acquires and uses
language.
Seek to discover the ways in which
languages are different and similar
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Linguistic Subfields

Structural linguistics
Historical linguistics
Phonology
Morphology
Comparative syntax

Ethnosemantics
Cognitive linguistics
Pragmatics
sociolinguistics
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Cultural Anthropology
A definition of culture (E.B. Tylor,
1871):
that complex whole which includes
knowledge, belief, art, law, morals,
custom, and any other capabilities and
habits acquired by man as a member
of society

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Some key characteristics of


culture:
Culture is not the same as biology.
There are some universal human functions
that everyone must perform in order to stay
alive, but people have not carried them out
in the same way in all places and times:
Eating
Drinking
Sleeping
Eliminating
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Some key characteristics of


culture:
Culture is learned, in many respects
tacitly.
Example: speaking distances
Edward Hall: intimate, personal, social,
and public speaking distances

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Making the Strange Familiar, and the


Familiar Strange
Anthropological research: fieldwork
Participant-observation: the principal
anthropological research technique
Anthropologists write descriptions of
culture in books and articles called
ethnographies.
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Cultural Subfields

Ecological
Demographic
Economic
Social
Political
Legal
Religion
Psychological
Medical

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Applied Anthropology
Use of data from any of the subfields
to address modern problems and
concerns
Anthropologists have begun to
perform larger roles in the formation
of government policy, planned
development, marketing, and even
law enforcement and military
opperations

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We often do and think things without


fully understanding why we do them,
or what their consequences are.
Anthropology questions our
assumptions that a particular way of
doing things is the only possible or
natural one.

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Holism
A broad, comprehensive
account that draws on all four
subfields under the umbrella
of anthropology as a way to
understand humankind

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Global Perspectives
Considers the biological,
environmental, psychological,
economic, historical, social, and
cultural conditions of humans at all
times and in all places.
Anthropologists connect local
perspectives with emerging
worldwide context.
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The Scientific Method


Deductive
Method
Hypothesis
Derived from theory,
tested by specific observation

General Theory
Specific
Observations
Explanation
Derived from spec. observations to build general theory

Inductive

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The Record of the Past

Paleo anthropology
Studies the traces of ancient
humans and human
ancestors to comprehend the
biological evolution of the
human species and to
understand the lifestyles of
these distant relatives

Geologic Influences
Paleontology
Fossils
Geology
Stratigraphy

Fossilization
Taphonomy
Biological or Geological

Burial
Absorption of minerals
Petrification

Trace Fossils
Coprolites

Archaeology
The study of past human
cultures through the
material traces they left
behind

Culture
Encompasses all aspects
of human activity, from
the fine arts to pop media,
from everyday behavior to
the most deeply rooted
religious beliefs.

Material Culture
The physical products of
human society
Stone tools -> computers

Geologic Time Scale

The Archaeological
Record
Past human activity is
found in sites, which are
composed of features.
Sites are located by
conducting surveys

Survey Techniques
Archival resources such as
maps
Informants
Walking surveys:
[un]systematic
Remote sensing
Aerial Photography
Infrared

Excavation
Costly, time consuming
The controlled destruction of
the past
Grid-works, datum points,
and index features.

Relative Dating
Lithostratigraphy
Geologic record

Faunal succession
Using evolutionary
knowns

Palynology
Pollen and spores

Chemical Dating
Trace elements

Stratigraphy

Principle of Original
Horizontality
layers of sediment are originally deposited
horizontally under the action of gravity

Principle of Cross-Cutting
Relationships

an igneous intrusion is always younger


than the rock itcutsacross.

Principle of Superposition
in a sequence of undisturbed
sedimentary layers or lava flows, the
oldest layers are at the bottom.

Principle of Faunal
Succession
sedimentary rock strata contain
fossilized flora and fauna, and that
these fossils succeed each other
vertically in a specific, reliable order
that can be identified over wide
horizontal distances.

Method

Basis

Material

Date Range

RELATIVE DATING
Law of
Superposition

Older is lower

Just about
anything

Just about any


time

Stratigraphic
Correlation

Like strata from Rocks and


different
fossils
regions are
related to the
same event

Just about any


time

Biostratigraphic Evolution of
(faunal) dating
animals

Bones and
teeth

Just about any


time

Chemical dating Fossils absorb


chemicals
(eg: flourine)
from soil

Bones

Less than
100,000 years

Cultural Dating

Technology

Up to about
2.5my

Artifacts are
time-specific

Method

Basis

Material

Date Range

ABSOLUTE DATING
Dendrochronolog
y

Tree growth

Specific tree
types

12,000-8,000ybp

Radiocarbon
dating

Carbon 14

Anything organic

50,000ybp1950CE

Radiopotassium
dating

Potassium 40

Volcanic rocks

More than
200,000 ybp

Amino acid dating

Racemization

Bones, shells

1mya-40,000ybp

Fission Track
Dating

Fission tracks on
rock crystal

Volcanic roc k

Up to 3mya

Paleomagnetic
dating

Shifts in earths
magnetic field

Sedimentary
rocks

Up to 5mya

Electron spin
resonance dating

Concentrations of
radioisotopes

Bones, teeth

Several thousand
to more than
1mya

Thermoluminesce
ncedating

Trapped energy

Sediment, stone,
ceramics

Up to 800,000ybp

Chronometric Dating
Radiometric Dating
Halflives

C14
K-Ar
Ar-Ar
Fission
Track
Dating
Al-Be
U series

Calibrated Relative Dating


Geomagnetic
Polarity
GPTS