Anthropology beyond Culture

By Richard G. Fox; Barbara J. King | Go to book overview

Introduction: Beyond Culture Worry

Richard G. Fox and Barbara J. King

Some years ago, when I published a book on the evolution of culture in
animals, I received a furious letter from an anthropologist telling me to
keep my dirty hands off their word.

—John Tyler Bonner, in a review of Frans de Waal’s
The Ape and the Sushi Master

Anthropologists have never had a single concept of culture upon which they agreed. Perplexity and even anguish over culture have been with us for a long time (British anthropologists, for instance, have always been skeptical of the culture concept). But our disquiet with the concept has increased greatly in recent years. We have become increasingly dissatisfied with the traditional definition of culture within anthropology, by which culture is a highly patterned and consistent set of representations (or beliefs) that constitute a people’s perception of reality and that get reproduced relatively intact across generations through enculturation. The homogeneity and continuity that this traditional definition assumes, along with its failure to address social inequality and individual agency, distress many anthropologists (Brumann [1999] reviews the arguments, but also see Abu-Lughod 1991; Bourdieu 1977; Fox 1985, 1995; Kuper 1999; Ortner 1984; Trouillot 1991).

Discontent with the traditional definition of culture, most apparent in cultural anthropology, makes for other worries. Primatologists, for example, have become disturbed by what appears to be a “glass ceiling” hanging over their use of the culture concept. As primatologists become more convinced that culture defined as learned traditions exists among nonhuman primates, they find cultural anthropologists modifying the concept or retreating entirely from its use. As a result, primatologists

-1-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Anthropology beyond Culture
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 314

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.