Anthropology is the holistic and scientific study of humanity. Cultural Anthropology focuses on contemporary human cultures, their beliefs, myths, values, practices, technologies, economies and other domains of social and cognitive organization. The detailed descriptions of culture, or ethnography, are based upon a methodology of primary data collection through participant observation with living human populations.
This textbook aims to provide an introduction to the field of cultural anthropology. The initial chapters introduce the concept of culture and review the historical, theoretical, and methodological influences on the field. Chapters four through twelve discuss the major domains of the study of culture; symbolism, communication, ritual, production, healing, rights, reproduction, kinship, conflict, and globalization. These chapters provide ethnographic examples (both etic and emic perspectives) and case studies to support the central concepts in each chapter. Additional case studies are available via the Anthrobase website and others can be developed in wikibook format and integrated through links in this book.
- Front Matter
- 1: Introduction to Anthropology and Culture
- 2: History of Anthropological Theory
- 3: Anthropological Methods
- 4: Communication and Language
- 5: Play, Sport, and Arts
- 6: Ritual and Religion
- 7: Production, Inequality and Development
- 8: Health and Healing
- 8: Human Rights
- 10: Marriage, Reproduction and Kinship
- 11: Social Stratification, Power and Conflict
- 12: Globalization and Migration
- Back Matter
Thumbnail: An Adivasi woman from the Kutia Kondh tribal group in Odisha, India. Image used with permission (CC BY-SA 4.0; PICQ).