Cross-cultural anthropology?

Thu, 10 Nov 1994 22:20:26 -0800

As I was driving home from a graduate seminar on contemporary anthropological
theory I was disturbed by a very basic, equally fundamental, anthropological
item. Do anthropologists actually do cross-cultural research.

I know this sounds like a simplified or maybe even a strange question to ask,
so let me quantify this for you. In my readings and own research, little
compared to some on this list, I have encountered few anthropological research
that has compared different cultures. As I assume that the cross-cultural
approach is meant by examining different cultures in similarities and
differences not that we mearly go to different cultures to do our research.

>From what I have seen of the literature, usually anthropologists merely
examine one culture, but when the do examine two cultures cross-culturally
they only look at one or two aspects of the cultures in question.

So, in doing cross-cultural research, our we only looking at one aspect?
Should we not be examining the whole culture to attain a complete picture?

I would greatly appreciate any comments, clarifications, or direction in
my delema.

/ /
/ Douglas W. Orr /
/ Home: (714) 751-9733 rk-ologi /
/ /
/ /
/ "Your meaning in life may be only to serve as a warning to others!" /
/ /