Page 1 of 9 Answer structure to 9 PYQ’s of Paper 1 Unit 6 Thinkers /* Note: This only provides a broad structure to some questions, please build an understanding of the theories before reading this. Please rely on your own understanding to the greatest extent possible! Good Luck - Sem Rigpa For Anthropology UPSC discussions, books, resources visit : https://t.me/ Anthropology_optional /* Q1 How did Morgan explain the evolution of marriage, family and socio- political organization, and how did other evolutionists disagree with his explanation? (2015, 20m) (Note: You may include 3 things in your response - Structure of the answer, a few major points, value addition) Introduction - LH Morgan was a unilineal evolutionist who claimed that societies develop acc. to one universal order of cultural evolution... Explanation of evolution of marriage,family and org. - 1.First Para — General theoretical basis for how Morgan explaned evolution of culture ( unilinear, simple to complex, universal human behaviour,etc.) and the general stages in the scheme 2. Second Para — Specific sequence of evolution of Marriage ( primitive promiscuity to polygamy — all the stages) , family (consanguine -> punuluan..etc.) and Soc-Pol org. (hoard- >matrisib...tribe..etc) 3. Third Para — brief criticism of this above sequence (assumption of one evolutionary path, existence of diﬀerent stages simultaneously, etc.) Disagreements with EB Tylor (though they are very similar in conception...) 1. Tylor linked savagery with Patriarchy whereas Morgan introduced Patriarchy in a much later stage (upper/middle barbarism) 2. Tylor envisaged a Matrilocal -> Couvade -> Patrilocal sequence for family structure, Matrilocality/couvade does not feature in Morgans scheme 3. Tylors scheme of marriage is simplistic (give comparative details with morgan) Disagreements of other evolutionists — Can introduce this with 2 lines on the revival of evolutionism in 20th century and the essential diﬀerence with Morgan (empirical basis) Page 2 of 9 1.Gordon Childe - disagreed on the very premise of the stages of cultural evolution, childe's scheme was based on archaeological periods and guided by transitions in food production+Urbanization+Industrialization as opposed to morgan's non empirical scheme 2. Julian Steward - disagreed that there was a 'universal' scheme for development in culture, stages depended on environment — can give stewards view of cultural ecology and relate it to marriage, family through environment exploiting behaviour etc. 3. Leslie White - premised his theory of cultural development ( culturology ) on the consumption of energy and development of technology. Hence for him the sociological aspect was based on the technological aspect ( give his formula of S=N*P*R) However the later evolutionists also agreed with Morgan on many accounts... (give a few points) Conclusion — while morgan is criticized on many accounts his contributions include cross cultural research and fieldwork among red indian societies where he developed his theory and sequence of marriage, family, etc. Q2 How did diﬀusionism and evolutionism diﬀer as explanations of culture change? (2015, 15m) Introduction — Diﬀusionists emerged as an 'anti-evolutionist' school in Anthropology and diﬀer significantly in their approach towards explaining the development of culture and culture change. Mention Boas. 1. Diﬀerence on unilinear sequences and 'psychic unity of mankind'— Classical evolutionism is premised on unilinear sequence (e.g. Morgans 7 stages...) and their simultaneous development , whereas acc. to Diﬀusionism various culture traits and complexes developed at various times...etc. 2. Spead of culture — classical evolutionism ignores diﬀusion of culture alltogether, though neo- evolutionists such as Gordon Childe accept it in part, Diﬀusionism is premised on this (give examples of both) 3. Inventiveness of man — is inherently denied by diﬀusionism whereas it is a necessary precondition to classical evolution's psychic unity of mankind (give examples with author and work) Page 3 of 9 4. Diﬀer in the explanation for origin of culture traits — evolutionism gives no explanation, assumes they occur everywhere, British Extreme diﬀusionists view and later diﬀusionists view.... 5. Ecological adaptation of cultural traits — was ignored by classical evolutionists, accepted by Frobenius and later Expanded by Neo-evolutionism: Julian steward's Cultural ecology 6. Explanation for Distinct and hybrid cultures — diﬀusionism uses the concept of kulturekreise and culture area to account for mixing of culture traits and the degree of culture change due to intermixing 7. Chronology of cultures — Diﬀusionists Schmidt and Graebner created a scheme for a chronological sequence of cultures and their change in a given region (give examples) evolutionists envisage a universal and rigid sequence for all mankind 8. Correlating culture traits with degree of advancement — classical evolutionists had a rigid ethnocentric conception of advanced civilizations and created cultural stages based on such views e.g. Frazer's view on magic, religion and science whereas Diﬀusionists were relatively agnostic to such conceptions of cultural advancements and their theory of culture change reflected the same 9. Age of a culture trait — no mention in classical evolutionism vs Wissler's age area hypothesis 10. Specific sequence of culture change — evolutionists posited that matrileneal kinship developed before patrileneal kinship and animism beefore polytheistic religions, diﬀusionists laid no such rigid assumptions One paragraph on how neo-evolutionists incorporated some ideas of diﬀusionists and improved the 19th century evolutionism theories of culture change Conclusion - both evolutionism and diﬀusionism have their own unique contributions ... give 3-4 points Q3 Critically examine historical particularist approach of Franz Boas in the study of culture ( 1997 , 2015) Introduction : Historical particularism was developed by American Anthropologist Franz Boas as an alternative to evolutionism and diﬀusionism. 1st Para : Historical particularism posited that detailed regional studies of individual cultures were required to understand culture change. Page 4 of 9 Give tenets and basics of historical particularism — emphasis on field work - participant observation, cultural relativism, emic perspective, authentic data, etc. 2nd to 4th Para : Critical Examination 1. In some cases overemphasis on facts may lead to a missing macro picture which is displayed by Boas's inability to theorize acc. to later anthropologists 2.Complete elimination of comparitive method is a misstep ... as shown by functionalists (Malinowski etc.) 3. Time consuming and cumbersome method - due to extensive participant observation and need for learning language etc. requires tremendous dedication... (can mention some Studies of Boas, or later even of malinowski/mead to demonstrate the eﬀect this had for generations to comee) 4. In certain cases some generalisations need to be made e.g. Protection of Human rights - when cultures have practices which are unacceptable e.g. genital mutilation here cultural relativism of historical particulism approach... 5. Clark Wissler was critical of the vast amounts of data collected which could not be analysed completely due to its immensity Conclusion: Historical Particularism was a significant departure from the prevailing context of ethnocentrism, left a tremendous impact of anthropology as an academic discipline... Q4 What is Functionalism? Discuss the functional approach towards understanding religion. (2014, 20m) Introduction — Functionalism as a theory emerged in the 1920s and considers culture as an interconnected whole and not a collection of Isolated traits. Bronislaw Malinowski was one of its major proponents. First Body — Tenets of Functionalism 1. Definition 2. Purpose of culture traits is to impart societal balance... 3. Malinowski's theory of needs 4.Intergrational aspect of culture - e.g. of Argonauts of western pacific (1922) 5. Brief criticism of functionalism —cannot explain cultural variation, does not account for negative cultural traits etc. Second Body — Functional approach to religion 1. Malinowski : i. Religion helps peoplee deal with situation beyond control Page 5 of 9 ii.Manage social disruption during death iii.Deal with social change 2. Talcott Parsons : i. Religion promotes value consensus ii. Maintanence of social order iii.Make sense of contradictory events 3. Emile Durkheim : i. Religious symbols act as societal symbols ii. Religion is a conservative force iii. Sense of belonging Final Body Criticism of functional approach — religion is a source of conflict..., ignores role of religion in genesis of social change.. etc. Conclusion : Merits of functionalism and it's impact on anthropology Q5 In what ways is Functionalism diﬀerent from Structure-Functionalism ( 2013, 20m) Introduction — Both schools emerged in the 1920s, in wake of the transformation of the discipline of Anthropology under the influence of American Anthropologist Franz Boas. Diﬀerences- 1. Proponents - Malinowski and Brown — both students of Franz Boas 2. Main Premise - Function of cultural trait vs preservation of society 3. Malinowski's theory of needs vs Brown's Social structure and Social organization 4. Malinowski's Functional Analysis through charter vs Brown's Social Function 5. Structural functionalism focuses on kinship and descent, Functionalism generally ignores it 6. Brown with structural functionalism was relatively more given to theory building and generalising based on observing social structure (e.g. the generation principle) compared to Malinowski with functionalism Commonalities- 1. Culture/Society as an integrated whole 2. Emphasis on field work - participant observation ( e.g. Trobriand islanders - malinowski, Andaman and Nicobar - Brown) Limitations- 1. Failed to explain cultural variation 2. Could not integrate conflict/ negative cultural traits 3. Synchronic approach - studied a culture at a given time, neglected historical fact - it's development over time Page 6 of 9 Later developments- 1. Edward Evans Pritchard who began as a functionalist reintroduced historical thinking into anthropology. 2. Comparitive functionalism - resolves the lack of comparison in functionalism a.k.a. Malinowskian Dilemma 3. Neo-functionalism - The new structural functionalism - accounts for bad behaviour/ negative cultural traits Conclusion - Functionalism and Structural functionalism had a lasting impact on anthropology as well as other disciplines. Their Basic tenets have become common sense in cultural analysis. Q6 Explain Ruth Benedict's patterns of culture. (2017, 20m) Introduction - Patterns of culture is a monograph written by Ruth benedict in 1934. Through her work, Benedict opened anthropology into a larger discussion between anthropology and psychology. Body 1 - Benedict defined culture pattern as the integration of many traits and complexes into a functional whole. (Give the explanation of cultural configuration as a special design of segments of culture - with diagram) Body 2 - Genuis of culture - the Apollonian, Dionysian, Paranoid and Megalomaniac patterns of culture, give examples of each - Pueblo Zuni, Kwakiutl etc. and describe their culture personality Body 3 - Benedict showed that 'culture is personality writ large' through her culture patterns — explain this Body 4 - Application of culture patterns in studying the Japanese society through National Character study — her book Crysanthemum and the sword (1946) Body 5 - Criticism of Benedicts theory — there are more than a few culture personalities, there is significant diversity in individual personality within cultures Conclusion - Benedict was instrumental in changing the approach to understanding culture to the individual instead of looking for universal laws of human behaviour Q7 What made Geertz's interpretative anthropology distinct from Turner's Symbolic Anthropology? What does each of them mean by the terms symbol and symbolic? (2015, 20m) Page 7 of 9 Introduction — symbolic anthropology emerged in the 1960s... it views culture as a mental phenomena... employs various analytical tools from history, literature and psychology..etc Body — Geertz vs Turner 1.Basic approach: Turner's transformational approach to symbolic anthropology postulates that sumbols initiate social action and are "determinable influences inclining persons and groups to action" Acc. to Geertz humans are in need of symbolic "sources of illumination" to orient themselves w.r.t the system of meaning that is any particular culture (1973) 2.Respective Influences: Turner - Emile Durkheim - operation of "society" and the way symbols function in it Geertz - Max Weber - concerned with operation of "culture" rather that how symbols influence social process 3.Orientation: Turner - whether symbols function in society the way anthropologists think theey do Geertz - focussed on how indivifuals "see, feel and think about the world" (Ortner, 1983) 4. Cornell School vs Chicago school Body - Terms Symbol and Symbolic Turner - symbol is " a blaze or landmark, something that connects the unknown to the known"; Turner saw symbols as static and stable entities, an entry into social relations Symbols (in the study of Ndembu) were seen as a way to bind society into a coherent and meaningful culture Symbolism therefore was a logical progression from material to institutional, for maintaining societal stability. Geertz uses symbols as a perspective to see a bigger picture and process. For Geertz, symbols are vehicles of culture. He sees symbols as susceptible to change. Symbolism for Geertz is an expression of culture. Q8 Explain the basic features of Postmodernism in Anthropology (2015, 20m) Page 8 of 9 Introduction — Post modernism in Anthropology started in the 1940s and took final shape in the 80s. The concept was proposed by James Cliﬀord, Derrida, Wulf. Postmodernism claims that it is impossible to have an objective and neutral knowledge of another culture. The basic features of Post modernism are — 1. Critical of Scientific Approach — Acc. to Melford Spiro, Post Modernism postulates that because of the subjectivity of the human experience, Anthropology cannot be a science. Further, since objectivity is an Illusion, Anthropology cannot contribute to the perspectives of opposed groups - females and third world.. 2.Reflexive Anthropology — Post modernists give other anthropologists an opportunity to reconsider their approaches to cultural analysis and become sensitive to their own unconsious assumptions 3. Emic Approach — Post modernism removes the distinction between the anthropologist and the observed. The Anthropologist does not assume any authority and in this way leaves room for the interpretations of the observed 4. Focus on description rather than interpretation and explanations. On documentation rather than theories. 5.Reflexive Ethnographies — rather than writing conventional anthropological reports, there is a focus on the process of doing fieldwork and personal experiences. Postmodernists see fieldwork as an opportunity to reflect upon and analyze their own cultures as well as other cultures. 6. Methodologies — Two methodologies characterize Post modernists - Deconstruction, which involves demystifying texts to reveal arbitrary presuppositions and intuitive interpretation involving introspective understanding. Criticism of Post Modernists 1. Post modernists cannot dismiss scientific method... 2.Objectivity is not impossible.. 3. Post modernists rely on a particular moral model as opposed to empirical data... Conclusion — Post modernists emphasize a viceral understanding as opposed to an intellectual one and take a strong stance on objectivity. While there are many critics of their view, they have nevertheless..... Page 9 of 9 Q9 What is Cognitive approach? Critically examine its implications in socio- cultural anthropology. (1996) Introduction — Basic definiton Cognitive approach addresses the ways in which people concieve of and think about events and objects in the world... Body — Cognitive approach and implications in socio-cultural anthropology 1. Stephen Tyler's concept of culture as mental constructs reinforces the emic approach. It postulates that culture is not an arbitrary list of institutions , rather a cognitive organization of material phenomena. This implies that the study of culture must include the perspective of the group being studied 2. Tyler's explanation of cultural diﬀerences in cognitive organization (in his study comparing the Koyas ability to identify 7 kinds of bamboo and the Americans inability to do so) has a large implication on socio-cultural anthropology. It explains the great inter-cultural variation which was not explained by Malinowski or Brown. 3.Similarly cognitive anthropology also explains intra cultural variation (e.g. American Women identify more colours), which was largely ignored by previous Schools of socio-cultural anthropology. 4. Harold Conklin's concept of Culture as an ideation system (from his study of Hanunao society) describes the diﬀerence in sensory perception and perceptual categorization which further explains why there is a diﬀerence in how diﬀerent societies percieve material phenomena diﬀerently. 5. Conklin's common design i.e. the existence of a universal design harks back to the 19th century evolutionists view of psychic unity of mankindand Levi-Strauss Deep structure thereby reinforcing this postulate. Body 2 — Some criticism of Cognitive approach ( 2-3 points) Conclusion— To summarize the examination on socio-cultural anthropology: Cognitive approach has opened new avenues for socio-cultural anthropology, in some cases reinforcing and refurbishing some old ideas and in other providing an alternate view to analyse the human condition. Note: This is one type of structure, it is perhaps easier to list out points of cognitive approach in one para, then examine it in the next, however , this seemed more appropriate given the context. Also, these points are not from any book/source, though obviously the underlying theories are, so use them at your own discretion.