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IGNOU MANE 003 Solved Assignment 2022-23
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Important Note – IGNOU MANE 003 Solved Assignment 2022-23 You may be aware that you need to submit your assignments before you can appear for the Term End Exams. Please remember to keep a copy of your completed assignment, just in case the one you submitted is lost in transit.
Submission Date :
- 31st March 2033 (if enrolled in the July 2033 Session)
- 30th Sept, 2033 (if enrolled in the January 2033 session).
SECTION – A
1. Define ethnography? Discuss its emergence of in anthropology.
Ans. Ethnography, descriptive study of a particular human society or the process of making such a study. Contemporary ethnography is based almost entirely on fieldwork and requires the complete immersion of the anthropologist in the culture and everyday life of the people who are the subject of his study.
There has been some confusion regarding the terms ethnography and ethnology. The latter, a term more widely used in Europe, encompasses the analytical and comparative study of cultures in general, which in American usage is the academic field known as cultural anthropology (in British usage, social anthropology). Increasingly, however, the distinction between the two is coming to be seen as existing more in theory than in fact. Ethnography, by virtue of its intersubjective nature, is necessarily comparative. Given that the anthropologist in the field necessarily retains certain cultural biases, his observations and descriptions must, to a certain degree, be comparative. Thus the formulating of generalizations about culture and the drawing of comparisons inevitably become components of ethnography.
The description of other ways of life is an activity with roots in ancient times. Herodotus, the Greek traveler and historian of the 5th century BC, wrote of some 50 different peoples he encountered or heard of, remarking on their laws, social customs, religion, and appearance. Beginning with the age of exploration and continuing into the early 20th century, detailed accounts of non-European peoples were rendered by European traders, missionaries, and, later, colonial administrators. The reliability of such accounts varies considerably, as the Europeans often misunderstood what they saw or had a vested interest in portraying their subjects less than objectively.
Modern anthropologists usually identify the establishment of ethnography as a professional field with the pioneering work of both the Polish-born British anthropologist Bronisław Malinowski in the Trobriand Islands of Melanesia (c. 1915) and the American anthropologist Margaret Mead, whose first fieldwork was in Samoa (1925). Ethnographic fieldwork has since become a sort of rite of passage into the profession of cultural anthropology. Many ethnographers reside in the field for a year or more, learning the local language or dialect and, to the greatest extent possible, participating in everyday life while at the same time maintaining an observer’s objective detachment. This method, called participant-observation, while necessary and useful for gaining a thorough understanding of a foreign culture, is in practice quite difficult. Just as the anthropologist brings to the situation certain inherent, if unconscious, cultural biases, so also is he influenced by the subject of his study. While there are cases of ethnographers who felt alienated or even repelled by the culture they entered, many—perhaps most—have come to identify closely with “their people,” a factor that affects their objectivity. In addition to the technique of participant-observation, the contemporary ethnographer usually selects and cultivates close relationships with individuals, known as informants, who can provide specific information on ritual, kinship, or other significant aspects of cultural life. In this process also the anthropologist risks the danger of biased viewpoints, as those who most willingly act as informants frequently are individuals who are marginal to the group and who, for ulterior motives (e.g., alienation from the group or a desire to be singled out as special by the foreigner), may provide other than objective explanations of cultural and social phenomena. A final hazard inherent in ethnographic fieldwork is the ever-present possibility of cultural change produced by or resulting from the ethnographer’s presence in the group.
Contemporary ethnographies usually adhere to a community, rather than individual, focus and concentrate on the description of current circumstances rather than historical events. Traditionally, commonalities among members of the group have been emphasized, though recent ethnography has begun to reflect an interest in the importance of variation within cultural systems. Ethnographic studies are no longer restricted to small primitive societies but may also focus on such social units as urban ghettos. The tools of the ethnographer have changed radically since Malinowski’s time. While detailed notes are still a mainstay of fieldwork, ethnographers have taken full advantage of technological developments such as motion pictures and tape recorders to augment their written accounts.
structuralism, in cultural anthropology, the school of thought developed by the French anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss, in which cultures, viewed as systems, are analyzed in terms of the structural relations among their elements. According to Lévi-Strauss’s theories, universal patterns in cultural systems are products of the invariant structure of the human mind. Structure, for Lévi-Strauss, referred exclusively to mental structure, although he found evidence of such structure in his far-ranging analyses of kinship, patterns in mythology, art, religion, ritual, and culinary traditions.
The basic framework of Lévi-Strauss’s theories was derived from the work of structural linguistics. From N.S. Trubetzkoy, the founder of structural linguistics, Lévi-Strauss developed his focus on unconscious infrastructure as well as an emphasis on the relationship between terms, rather than on terms as entities in themselves. From the work of Roman Jakobson, of the same school of linguistic thought, Lévi-Strauss adopted the so-called distinctive feature method of analysis, which postulates that an unconscious “metastructure” emerges through the human mental process of pairing opposites. In Lévi-Strauss’s system the human mind is viewed as a repository of a great variety of natural material, from which it selects pairs of elements that can be combined to form diverse structures. Pairs of oppositions can be separated into singular elements for use in forming new oppositions.
In analyzing kinship terminology and kinship systems, the accomplishment that first brought him to preeminence in anthropology, Lévi-Strauss suggested that the elementary structure, or unit of kinship, on which all systems are built is a set of four types of organically linked relationships: brother/sister, husband/wife, father/son, and mother’s brother/sister’s son. Lévi-Strauss stressed that the emphasis in structural analysis of kinship must be on human consciousness, not on objective ties of descent or consanguinity. For him, all forms of social life represent the operation of universal laws regulating the activities of the mind. His detractors argued that his theory could be neither tested nor proved and that his lack of interest in historical processes represented a fundamental oversight. Lévi-Strauss, however, believed that structural similarities underlie all cultures and that an analysis of the relationships among cultural units could provide insight into innate and universal principles of human thought.
2. Critically examine the kinship ties as depicted in the ethnography Web of kinship among the Tallensi.
3. Discuss feminist influences in writing ethnographies.
4. With reference to the ethnography Death in Banaras examine the fieldwork concerns and the intellectual background of the work.
5. Write short notes referring to the ethnographies discussed in the course:
a. Notes on love in a Tamil Family
b. Gender identities
SECTION – B
6. Outline the features of structural-functional approach. Add a note on its criticisms.
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7. Discuss how Futhwa had looked at traditional remedies in his work in South Africa.
8. Examine Victor Turner’s contribution to the understanding of rites of passage in Africa.
IGNOU MANE 003 Solved Assignment 2022-23
9. Critically evaluate the differences between Malinowski and Weiner’s work among the
10. Write short notes referring to the ethnographies discussed in the course:
a. India’s Changing Villages
b. Cree Worldview
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IGNOU Instructions for the MANE 003 Comparative Ethnography
IGNOU MANE 003 Solved Assignment 2022-23 Before attempting the assignment, please read the following instructions carefully.
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