A way of life

Trimis la data: 2015-10-01 Materia: Engleza Nivel: Liceu Pagini: 3 Nota: / 10 Downloads: 0
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"A way of life." Many people use this expression as a way to talk about their subsistence and how they perceive their everyday life. What they fail to recognize, however, is the fact that their way of living is connected in a much broader category than they think. Anthropologists study these categories broad, narrow, present, and past to try and find out what exactly a "way of life" was for individual cultures. By studying these cultures Anthropologists try and deduce different methods of survival.

They have also discovered a few major social institutions that all cultures have a common bond together. These social institutions are the basis for which culture is founded. In order for a culture to become distinct from other cultures it has to apply different rules and change around these institutions. Anthropologists use these social institutional changes to understand the development of a culture and their way of being.

They research these processes through fieldwork mostly. By using fieldwork as a means of research they can directly observe, interview, survey, and then analyze the situation. This gives them the advantage of seeing with their own eyes what happens within a culture. Fieldwork and the analysis of the fieldwork will be the basis on which this paper will investigate the social institution of subsistence and economics among a subgroup of our culture.

One of the defining aspects of culture is subsistence. Through subsistence you can find out how a culture has survived or what they did wrong that caused them to become extinct. This is based on the fact that a group has to adapt to their environment for the basic elements needed to survive. These basic elements are: food, shelter, technology, and clothing (clothes are necessary in some environments). How a group utilizes their environment places them into one of the four categories of subsistence styles. These four known categories are: hunting and gathering, fishing and gardening, herding and gardening, and agriculture.

Each of these categories is in sequence, from hunting to agriculture, in order of least to greatest impact that they leave upon the environment. Every culture can fit into one of these subsistent styles. How a culture turns this style into a way of living is how each culture individualizes and becomes unique from each other. Which style the culture resides in mainly has to do with what the surrounding area has to offer them. The ecology of the environment has a great importance in deciding which style the group needs to adapt to in order to survive. For example, the Trobriand Islanders in Malaysia have a limited supply of where they can obtain their food.

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