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 Social science studies the historical, cultural,

sociological, psychological, and the political
sources that shape the actions of individuals
and their impact on society.
 The different disciplines under the social
sciences all help in providing a better
understanding and appreciation of the
complex issues that face society.
 study of ancient societies and their
cultural variations.
 Came from the Greek word anthropos
meaning “ humankind” and logos
meaning the “study”(Bonstingl,1996, p
 In studying culture, anthropologist
investigate the peoples language, their
values, technologies and even how they
group themselves.
 Also study the way the cultural
variations of different groups of
people, have changed over the years.
 Anthropology has two broad fields,
physical and cultural
1. Physical Anthropology/ Biological anthropology,
 studies the biological evolution of man.

 It also provides explanations on the reason

behind the biological variations among
contemporary human populations.
2. Cultural Anthropology
 Investigates and seeks to understand the
cultural features of societies.

1. Archeology
 seek to reconstruct the past life of
ancient societies, trace the cultural
changes that took place and the
reason behind the changes.
 Archaeologist reconstruct the past
using the fossil remains of human
2. Anthropological linguistics
 study of language in societies or communities
where language may or may not be written.
 it is also concerned with the emergence of
languages, the divergence of languages and
the changes in the languages across time.
 Archeology and anthropological linguistics
mostly used fragmentary remains of the past
3. Ethnology
 Uses data gathered through observations and
interviews with living people.
 Ethnologist study marriage customs, kinship
pattern, economic systems, and religious rites of
cultural groups, and compare it with the way of life
of contemporary societies.(Ember, 2002, pp 5-7)

 Anthropology’s emergence as an area of inquiry

can go back as far back as the time of Herodotus
of Halicarnassus.
Herodotus of Halicarnassus.
 He traveled a great deal and was able to write
detailed narratives about West Asia and Egypt.
 He also had a second hand information to
describe the Scythians, the Ethiopians and the
people from the Indus Valley( Ericksen and
Nielsen, 2001, p. 2)
 These narratives reveal an important area of
inquiry in anthropology, which is how are to relate
to the other.
 A major step in the evolution of anthropology as
a discipline is the period of European conquest
during the sixteen century.
 It has one introduced the strange “other” to
the sphere of European social thinker.
 It elicited the formulation of rudimentary
theories on what distinguishes humans from
animals and inspired descriptive narratives on
the way of life of these exotic people.
 It is during the period of Enlightenment in the
18th century that anthropology came of age.
 The period saw the flourishing of philosophy
and sciences and people sought greater
freedom from the Church.
 This liberal environment which produced the
French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars
also become a fertile ground for academic
anthropological studies.