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The Study of Humans

Why Anthropology is Important

It provides a look at our past and how it can help shape our present It allows us to see our evolutionary history It studies other cultures to help us understand the human race more fully It keeps information from remote cultures alive that might have otherwise been lost

Eric Holsinger
Employment Project 9/22/2012 Into to Tech Writing


Anthropology, most simply, is the study of human beings. Anthropologists study all aspects of human life from the past, present and future. Cultural differences and similarities across the world are of great interest. Anthropologists believe that studying different cultures, from past or present, can give us a more complete view of how we live our lives. We can learn so much from different cultures, like different types of medicines, practices, religions, etc, and anthropologists are the ones that conduct the field work to discover these things. Anthropology is split into 4 subfields: Cultural Anthropology, Physical Anthropology, Archaeology, and Linguistic Anthropology. Anthropology helps us understand cultures all around the world and get a more complete picture of who we are as human beings. Cultural anthropology is the study of different cultures around the world. Cultural anthropologists go into the field to conduct participant observation of cultures they are studying. This means they go and live with the people they are studying to get a more complete understanding of all aspects of their lives.

Archaeology is the study of past cultures through material remains, and the best known field of Anthropology thanks to Indiana Jones. The movies give a distorted view on the field, as archaeologist deal more with digging and studying material goods rather than fighting Nazis. Archaeologist can work in both remote, foreign locations, underwater, and around just about any town. They help understand human history and where we came from.

Physical anthropology is the study of the physical development of humans and nonhuman primates. This includes studying the history of the human race and our evolution over the course of history. Studying genetics is also part of physical anthropology. Osteology is another aspect. Physical anthropologist can play a big part in crime investigations due to their knowledge of the human body.

Linguistic anthropology is the study of language and how it shapes our lives. Linguist anthropologists help study languages all over the world and are vital in ensuring dying languages are recorded so they will never truly be gone. These anthropologists also study how our language can shape our social groups and society as a whole.