Applied Anthropology

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					Applied Anthropology
  History of Applied Anthropology
  Ethics of Applied Anthropology
       Medical Anthropology
  Anthropologists as Advocates
        Applied Anthropology

 The application of anthropological knowledge, theory,
  and methods to the solution of specific societal
  problems.
 Cultural anthro in an applied situation want to bring
  about change.
    i.e. Star Trek “prime directive”-do not interfere or change
     societies for better or worse.
    Because hard to judge long-term effect of change.
 Roles of applied anthros include policy researcher,
  evaluator, impact assessor, planner, research analyst,
  needs assessor, trainer, advocate, expert withness,
  administrator, manager, cultural broker.
           Applied Anthropology
 Applied anthro in tough situation but they feel
  they are the best equipped to make suggestions
  for change because of their intimitate knowledge
  of a culture.
 Anthros have all the things we have already
  talked about.
    Holistic Approach-looking at multiple variables and
     see human problems in their historical, economic, and
     cultural context.
    b. Theories dealing with culture change
    c. Regional expertise
    d. Local level expertise through part. obs.
       -fuller understanding of the soicocultural realities than might
         be possible with other secondary sources.
         Applied Anthropology
 Anthro try and bring emic and etic views
   Emic = a perspective in ethnography that uses the
    concepts and categories that are relevant and
    meaningful to the culture under analysis. Native view.
   Etic = a perspective in ethnography that use's the
    concepts and categories of the anthros culture to
    describe another culture. Scientific view.
 Cultural Relativism
   An attempt to understand cultural patterns from the
    "inside" and to see traits of a culture in terms of the
    cultural whole.
   Opposite of ethnocentrism-perceiving and judging
    other cultures from perspective of one's own culture.
History of Applied Anthropology
 Applied first assoc. w/ British colonialism
    During the 19th century, e.g., Britain employed
     anthros to help in the administration of colonies.
    subjugated people, local pops
    were meeting needs of employer but not necessarily
     the local people
 Association of Applied w/ colonialism made
  negative impression and was difficult to
  overcome.
 Applied anthro really took off again during WWII.
 Anthro helped in war efforts
 Society of Applied Anthro founded at Harvard
  (1941)
 More anthropologists doing applied work at that
  time than any time previous
 Accomplishments:
   helped establish gov. policy on food rationing.
   provided cultural daa on allies and adversaries.
   relocation of Japanese-American interns on the West
    coast.
 After WWII, refocus on academic anthropology
 here is a dichotomy that is made between applied
  anthro and academic anthro (applied vs. basic research).
 Most anthros after war employed by Univ teaching and
  basic research, as opposed to working for gov.
 Although not much Applied anthro, an important
  reorientation took place.
    prior to 1950s, anthros tried to employ "value free philosophy": a
     commitment to avoid interjecting any of their own values in their
     work.
    In 1950s, anthros decided it was impossible to free your work of
     your own biases, should set out your goals, objectives, and
     perspective for everyone and when working for an employer
     should know their own value positions.
    this helped erase some of the negative feelings toward applied
     anthro.
 Examples:
    Fox project-intervention in the problems of Native American
     group.
    Vicos project-tranforming a nonproductive hacienda into an
     economically productive and self-governing community.
    New Applied Anthropology

 Characterized by contract work for public service
  agencies accomplished away from universities.
 Applied anthro no longer dominated by
  university doing short-term applied work but
  anthros are full time employees of agencies.
 Today, anthros are still exploring the
  employment opportunities for themselves not
  only with gov. agencies but private businesses,
  the economiy is a world economy and to do
  business you need a global perspective.
              Ethical Questions
 How do you make findings public without revealing informants?
 Can you be certain presenting your data will help and won't
  eventually hurt the people you studied?
 How much do you get personally involved?
    First became a concern with Franz Boas in 1919, who spoke out about
     using science as a cover for spying.
    Project Camelot ($6 million) 1970s
    To gather data on gorilla forces so U.S. Army could cope more
     effectively with internal revolutions in foreign countries. Project
     cancelled after Government heard about it.
 Immense repercussions in social sciences:
    suspicion on legitimate research.
    government using social sciences as cover.
    anthros were misled.
        Areas of Responsibility

   People studied
   Public
   Students
   Sponsors
   Governments
   Follow American Anthro ethics-each member of
    the profession ultimately responsible for won
    ethical conduct.
    Drawbacks of Applied Anthro

 Participant observation takes a long time, can't just go in
    and immediately solve problems.
   Anthros get wrapped up in "their" people, lose the go-
    between attitude so don't work well with the managers of
    the projects.
   Lack quantitative data, numbers, but this is changing.
   Idea that the anthro knows best, can't think that you
    know everything.
   Cultural relativism appears in conflict to loyalty to gov.
    employer.
   Anthropology and Public Policy

 As societies become more complex, become
  heterogeneous-segments tend to become
  increasingly isolated.
   ethnic group from ethnic group.
   occupational specialties from one another.
   elites from the poor.
 Well intentioned public policies cannot help
  when based on ignorances of pops affected by
  them.
   anthro can act as "cultural brokers" between policy
    makers and target pop.
   anthro fill vacuum.
        Medical Anthropology

 Growing field of applied anthro
    Inadequate health care major contemporary problem.
    Model of health care intervention based on assumption that
     modern western medical practices were clearly superior to
     indigenous systems.
    People would drop traditional practices and turn to newer
     systems
 Planners assumption incorrect
    modern facilities not used extensively
    traditional practices and specialists remained influential.
 Anthro useful in identifying cultural and social factors that
  acts as barriers inhibiting acceptance of new health care
  measures.
  Anthropologists as Advocates

 Act on behalf of indigenous people whose cultures are
  destroyed and whose rights are violated when they are
  perceived as standing in way of economic development
  and political priorities of nations of which they are a part.
 Indigenous people often stigamatized as clinging to
  backward and primitive way of life and obstructing
  econoic dvlpmnt and nation bldg.
 Often result is appropriation of indigenous lands upon
  which their survival rests
 Anthro not trying to preserve people in mythical original
  state-cultures change anthro know this well. Anthro
  support the rights of people to have a say in their future.
          Cultural Survival
 http://www.cs.org/newpage/index.cfm

				
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