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1 Applying Anthropology • • What Is Applied Anthropology? The Role of the Applied Anthropologist Academic and Applied Anthropology Urban Anthropology Medical Anthropology and Business Careers and Anthropology © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
2 Applied Anthropology • American Anthropological Association (AAA) recognizes two dimensions – Academic anthropology – includes cultural, archaeological, biological, and linguistic anthropology – Applied anthropology – application of anthropological data, perspectives, theory, and techniques to identify, assess, and solve contemporary social problems © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
3 Applied Anthropology • Has many applications – Medical – Development – Environmental – Forensic – Physical © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
4 Cultural Resource Management (CRM) • Branch of applied archaeology aimed at preserving sites threatened by dams, highways, and other projects – Involves not only preserving sites but allowing their destruction if they are not significant © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
5 What Is Applied Anthropology? • Practicing anthropologists practice their profession outside of academia • Applied anthropologists work for groups that promote, manage and assess programs and policies aimed at influencing human behavior and social conditions © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
6 The Role of the Applied Anthropologist • Combats ethnocentrism – tendency to view one’s own culture as superior and to apply one’s own cultural values in judging the behavior and beliefs of people raised in other cultures © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
7 The Role of the Applied Anthropologist • Proper roles of applied anthropologists: – Identifying needs for change that local people perceive – Working with those people to design culturally appropriate and socially sensitive change – Protecting local people from harmful policies and projects that threaten them © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
8 Table 2. 1 The Four Subfields and Two Dimensions of Anthropology © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
9 Academic and Applied Anthropology • Academic anthropology grew most after World War II – During 1970 s, and increasingly thereafter, most anthropologists still worked in academia but others found jobs with international organizations, government, business, hospitals, and schools – About half of students graduating with Ph. Ds in anthropology will have careers outside academia © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
10 Theory and Practice • Ethnographers study societies firsthand, living with and learning from ordinary people – Theory aids practice, and application fuels theory – Anthropology’s systemic perspective recognizes that changes don’t occur in a vacuum © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
11 Urban Anthropology • Urban anthropology is the cross-cultural and ethnographic and biocultural study of global urbanization and life in cities – Human populations becoming increasingly urban – UN estimates that about a sixth of earth’s population living in urban slums © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
12 Urban Anthropology • Urban vs. Rural – Robert Redfield focused on contrasts between the rural and urban contexts in the 1940 s – In any nation, urban and rural represent different social systems – Applying anthropology to urban planning starts by identifying the key social groups in the urban context © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
13 Medical Anthropology • Unites biological and cultural anthropologists in the study of disease, health problems, health-care systems, and theories about illness in different cultures and ethnic groups • Disease – scientifically identified health threat caused by a bacterium, virus, fungus, parasite or other pathogen © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
14 Medical Anthropology • Illness – condition of poor health perceived or felt by an individual • Scientific medicine – distinguished from Western medicine, a health-care system based on scientific knowledge and procedures, encompassing such fields as pathology, microbiology, biochemistry, surgery, diagnostic technology, and applications © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
15 Medical Anthropology • Different ethnic groups and cultures recognize different illnesses, symptoms, and causes – Disease varies among cultures – Spread of certain diseases, like malaria and schistosomiasis, associated with population growth and economic development © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
16 Medical Anthropology • Personalistic disease theories – blame illness on such agents as sorcerers, witches, ghosts, or ancestral spirits • Naturalistic disease theories – explain illness in impersonal terms • Emotionalistic disease theories – assume emotional experiences cause illness (e. g. , “susto”) © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
17 Health-care systems • Beliefs, customs, specialists, and techniques aimed at ensuring health and preventing, diagnosing, and treating illness – All cultures have health-care specialists (e. g. , curers, shaman, doctors) – Curer – specialized role acquired through a culturally appropriate process of selection, training, certification, and acquisition of a professional image; a cultural universal © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
18 Western Medicine • Biomedicine surpasses non-Western medicine in many ways – Thousands of effective drugs – Preventive health care – Surgery • Medical anthropologists serve as cultural interpreters between local systems and Western medicine © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
19 Western Medicine • Despite its advances, Western medicine is not without its problems • Overprescription of drugs and tranquilizers • Unnecessary surgery • Impersonality and inequality of the patientphysician relationship • Overuse of antibiotics © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
20 Anthropology and Business • Anthropologists may acquire unique perspective on organizational conditions and problems • Applied anthropologists act as “cultural brokers” to translate managers’ goals or workers’ concerns to the other group © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
21 Key features of anthropology for business • Ethnography • Cross-cultural expertise • Focus on cultural diversity © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.
22 Careers in Anthropology • Anthropology’s breadth provides knowledge and an outlook on the world that are useful in many kinds of work – Knowledge about traditions and beliefs of many social groups within a modern nation is important in planning and carrying out programs that affect those groups © 2008 The Mc. Graw-Hill Companies, Inc.