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Introduction to Social Anthropology

Introduction to Social, Cultural, and Linguistic Anthropology. Culture, Difference,
Prejudice → ethnology
● How anthropology developed as a discipline with four sub-fields (sociocultural
anthropology, biological anthropology, anthropological archaeology), and what that has
to do with the history of colonialism.
● How language, culture, and society help humans adapt to the natural world.
● How competition for natural and cultural resources may take place between groups
differentiated by culture, social organization, and/or language.
● How in conditions of inequality such friction may align itself along divisions of race.
● How race is not a scientific concept, but that doesn't make it any less real.
● How slavery made anti-Black racism what it still is.
Colonial Heritage
● Late 19th century, anthro used to explain exotic population in context of west cp;pnilaims
● Many anthropologist, such oppression and for the equality of all population are of other
cultures and languages
○ white, black, yellow and red
Human → Having a culture, makes sense of the world
Functions of Culture and Language
1. Social Construction** → suggests building something, educates our understanding of
the world e.g falling in love in anthro, natural thing? → without influence from anyone
else, happens in different ways → not spontaneous/natural (engagement ring,
understood by everyone , not universal). Not same throughout history or culture
2. Communication → language, signs, symbiotics, everything communicates something
3. Create Identity→ similar culture or language feel an identity, just like you, you don't
think about it , needs to be surprising, inherently of interest → TRADITIONALLY
- Developed in the context of western colonialism (6th century but we talk about 19th
century → imperialism to industrial revolution), western people got to know the rest of
the world into order to dominate them