Notes, Exercises, Videos, Tests and Things to Remember on Key Figures in the History of Anthropology
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E.B Tylor is the founding member of British School of Anthropology; he has a great contribution on Evolution of Culture and Religion. Tylor became a pioneer in the field of anthropology in the late 19thcentury. He joined the university Museum of Oxford then became a professor of anthropology.
Some of his major works are:
Tylor's opinion was that the study of culture is essentially a historical study. For him, anthropology is the study of man’s development in the course of history. According to Tylor, culture is an attribute of man acquired by him as a member of society. In this definition, ‘acquire’ is the key word for it meant that culture was the product of social learning rather than of biological heredity and that the differences in cultural development were not a result of degeneration, but of progress in cultural knowledge. In brief, the study of culture and its evolution is the historical study of man’s development in society, from ‘Savagery’ to the rise of ‘Barbarism’ and then to ‘Civilization’.
For Tylor, “Religion is the belief in spiritual being”. All men everywhere developed and followed some kind of supernatural belief system. While liking for the origin of religion, Tylor focused on early man’s attitude towards dreams and death, which are man’s special experiences. For him, soul, spirit, dream, death, natural power and supernatural power, human beings and superhuman beings all are the components of religion. His paradigm of the development of religion:
After doing Ph.D. in mathematics and physics, Malinowski paid attention to anthropology. He became a pioneer anthropologist in ‘Functionalism’ while Durkheim and Radcliffe-Brown were doing on Societal and Structural Functionalism respectively Malinowski dragged his attention on ‘Functions of Culture’ to fulfill human needs. He gave anthropology a new meaning and developed a new theory of culture that culture fulfills human needs.
Some of his major works are:
Malinowski is the view that if a society is to be properly studied, the culture of that society should be understood at first because that gives a glance in the social life of the people. Every individual makes some adjustment to live smoothly in the society and helps in the development of social culture. For him, main object of every cultural organization is to provide means by which physical and cultural needs are met. Thus, he said culture is a response to basic human needs. No culture can exist if it does not satisfy human needs. For him, needs are individual and responses are collectively effort to deal with them. He also defined culture as ‘social heritage’ of a human. As such culture is the backbone of anthropology.
Khatri, Prem Kumar et.al., Elementary Sociology and Anthropology XI, Bhundipuran Prakashan, Kathmandu
Sharma, Kamal Raj, Introduction to Sociology and Anthropology inNepal-XI, Sunrise Prakashan Pvt. Ltd., Kathmandu
Sitaula, Mohan Kumar, Introduction to Sociology and Anthropology-XI, Ekta Books and Distributors, Kathmandu
Major works of Edward Burnett Tylor
Major works of Bronislaw Kasper Malinowski