Re: On distinguishing anthropology from sociology

William Bangs (wbbangs@U.WASHINGTON.EDU)
Tue, 14 Mar 1995 11:55:26 -0800

Hi. I just finished up a course in which we were assigned more Ben
Anderson, Heather Southerland, Dan Lev...than Clifford Geertz. While
frustrated (I felt that even when readings/lectures were trying to be
'anthropological' the class would have worked just as well under a
history or political science number) I do note that it WAS indeed
crosslisted -- in International Studies. I think we CAN say, though,
that what distinguishes us is our emphasis on the patterns and mechanics
of human organization (we call it culture). Ultimately though, we share
this earth (as well we should) with scholars as 'un-anthropological' as
physicists -- some of whom I've known to be more deeply interested (and
versed) in the issues of cultural anthropology than most, perhaps even
some who have at one time or another graced this list with their presence...

There IS more to being an anthropologist than just saying you are,
attending AAA conventions etc, but in the end when I want to get a feel
for a place and its people I read travel writers, journalists,
historians, political scientists, Robert Johnsons -- and yes --
SOCIOLOGISTS. Let's remember: we're all in this together!

Ben Bangs

Do what's right, not what's easy!