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Research guide: Anthropology
Courtesy, modesty, good manners, conformity to definite ethical standards are universal, but what constitutes courtesy, modesty, good manners, and ethical standards is not universal. It is instructive to know that standard differs in the most unexpected ways. It is still more important to know how the individual reacts to those standards.
Franz Boas in the foreword to Coming of Age in Samoa by Margaret Mead, 1928
Reference books | Circulating books | Library databases | Audio Visual materials | Web resources
Reference Books
  • Encyclopedia of Anthropology
    eBook through Gale Virtual Reference Library
    This five-volume Encyclopedia of Anthropology is a unique collection of over 1000 entries that focuses on topics in physical/ biological anthropology, archaeology, cultural/social anthropology, linguistics, and applied anthropology. Also included are relevant articles on geology, paleontology, biology, evolution, sociology, psychology, philosophy, and theology.
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Circulating Books
  • Encyclopedia of cultural anthropology edited by David Levinson, Melvin Ember
    GN307 .E52 1996
    Four volume set covers all five major subfields of Anthropology, cultural, biological, archaeology, linguistics and applied .
  • Companion encyclopedia of anthropology by Tim Ingold
    GN25 .C65 1997
    One volume provides overview of the major Anthropological topics within the categories of humanity, culture and social life.
  • Patterns of culture by Ruth Benedict (1887-1948)
    GN506 .B46 2005
    For more than a generation, this pioneering book has been an indispensable introduction to the field of anthropology. Here, in her study of three sharply contrasting cultures, Benedict puts forward her famous thesis that a people's culture is an integrated whole, a "personality writ large." Publisher’s comment
  • Coming of age in Samoa: a psychological study of primitive youth for western civilization by Margaret Mead (1901-1978)
    DU813 .M4 2001
    It details her historic journey to American Samoa, taken where she was just twenty-three, where she did her first fieldwork. Here, for the first time, she presented to the public the idea that the individual experience of developmental stages could be shaped by cultural demands and expectations. Adolescence, she wrote, might be more or less stormy and sexual development more or less problematic in different cultures. The "civilized" world, she taught us had much to learn from the "primitive.” Publisher’s comment
  • Anthropology & modern life by Franz Boas (1858-1942); with a new introduction and afterward by Herbert S. Lewis.
    GN27 .B6 2004
    Anthropologist Boas was a stalwart fighter for human rights and against racism. This book shows how Boas used science in the service of humanity, hoping to break down racial and cultural barriers. Publisher’s comment
  • The interpretation of cultures: selected essays by Clifford Geertz
    GN315 .G36 1973
    "Clifford Geertz...is one of the most original and stimulating anthropologists of his generations....Geertz writes of issues that touch us all: The meaning of life and death...The problems of coping with a social order, the need to make sense out of it all....[He] also writes with style, verve, learning, and intelligence." Elizabeth Colson, Contemporary Sociology, 4(6), Nov., 1975, p. 637
  • The rise of anthropological theory: a history of theories of culture, by Marvin Harris (1927-,)
    GN308 .H35 2001
    First published in 1968, Harris's book has been cited in over 1,000 works and is one of the key documents explaining cultural materialism, the theory associated with Harris's work. This updated edition includes the complete 1968 text plus a new introduction by the author, which discusses the impact of the book and highlights some of the major trends in anthropological theory since its original publication. Publisher’s comment
  • Doing ethnographies by Mike Crang and Ian Cook
    D 769.8 .A6 K37 2003
    “Crang (human geography, Univ. of Durham) and Cook (human geography, Univ. of Birmingham) provide a well-written practical guide to doing ethnographic research in the broadest sense of the term. They begin with a useful discussion of what ethnographic research entails, especially in human geography, and how it fits in the broader realm of social research in a postmodern context.”
    Choice Review March 2008
  • The ethnographer's eye: ways of seeing in anthropology by Anna Grimshaw
    GN347 .G75 2001
    Grimshaw sets a new agenda for visual anthropology, attempting to transcend the old division between image and text-based ethnography. She argues for the use of vision as a critical tool with which anthropologists can address issues of knowledge and technique. Publisher's comment

  • Principles of visual anthropology edited by Paul Hockings
    GN347 .P75 1995
    The book covers ethnographic filming and its relations to the cinema and television; applications of filming to anthropological research, the uses of still photography, archives, and videotape; subdisciplinary applications in ethnography, archeology, bio-anthropology, museology and ethnohistory; and overcoming the funding problems of film production. Publisher's comment
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Library Databases

  • JStor
    Full text database with 28 scholarly journals on Anthropology.
  • Anthropology Plus
    Offers Anthropological Literature from Harvard University and the Anthropological Index, Royal Anthropological Institute from the UK
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Audio Visual Materials
  • Off the verandah, written and presented by Bruce Dakowski, produced and directed by Andre Singer
    GN21.M25 O4 1990
    Examines the work of Bronislaw Malinowski, who studied the people of the Trobriands, a group of Pacific Islands, altering the idea that native peoples were primitive savages.
  • First contact a film by Bob Connolly and Robin Anderson
    GN671.N5 C66 1987
This film document s the first contact between New Guinean tribespeople and the film maker in 1930 and includes present day reflections on their meeting.

  • Taking pictures produced and directed by Les McLaren and Annie Stiven
    GN347 .T35 1996
    Australian documentary filmmakers explore the issues and pitfalls of filming across cultural boundaries through interviews and samples of their films of Papua New Guinea including Trobriand Cricket, First Contact, The Shark Callers of Kontu, Joe Leah's Neighbors, Black Harvest, Cannibal tours, and others. It also covers the work of indigenous Papua New Guinea filmmakers and their own experience making sense of film and culture.
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Web Resources
  • Library of Congress The American Folklife Center, Ethnographic Resources related to Folklore, Anthropology, Ethnomusicology, and the Humanities: American Folklife Center of the Library of Congress
    On this Web site you will find not only an introduction to the activities of the American Folklife Center and its Archive of Folk Culture but also news about programs and activities, online presentations of multiformat collections, and other resources to facilitate folklife projects and study. The American Folklife Center aims to be the national center for folklife documentation and research, and this Web site offers a virtual destination for those who cannot visit the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.

  • Smithsonian Encyclopedia of History and Culture - Anthropology and Archaeology
    A computerized communications network for the archeological and historic preservation community—was established to improve access to information on archeological activities nationwide. This internationally recognized resource is maintained through a cooperative agreement between National Park System and the Center for Advanced Spatial Technologies at the University of Arkansas

  • American Anthropological Association
    Founded in 1902, the American Anthropological Association (AAA) is the world's largest organization of individuals interested in anthropology. Although there were several other American anthropological societies in existence at the turn of the 20th century, this new, national organization was formed "to promote the science of anthropology, to stimulate and coordinate the efforts of American anthropologists, to foster local and other societies devoted to anthropology, to serve as a bond among American anthropologists and anthropologic[al] organizations present and prospective, and to publish and encourage the publication of matter pertaining to anthropology"
    (AAA Articles of Incorporation).

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