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CENTRAL AFRICAN HUNTER-GATHERER RESEARCH TRADITIONS - page 16 / 43

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Another feature that distinguishes the American research tradition from others is its ongoing ethnoarchaeological research.  Ethnoarchaeologists investigate relationships between human behaviour and its material consequences by observing both in the present.  For example, Fisher (1993) documented forager-farmer exchange at Efe elephant processing sites in the Ituri Forest and the spatial organization of Efe campsites (Fisher 1987; Fisher and Strickland 1989, 1991). Ethnoarchaeological research of Aka and related Bofi foragers focused on net hunting and women’s work effort (Lupo and Schmitt 2002), evolutionary explanations of meat sharing (Lupo and Schmitt 2004), small prey hunting technology and zooarchaeology (Lupo and Schmitt 2005), and taphonomic analyses of small animal bones (Fancher 2009; Landt 2007).       

Finally, it is important to note that in trying to characterize particular national traditions, several domains of important research have been omitted. In particular, extensive ethnomusicology of forest foragers has been conducted in France (Arom 1991) and to a lesser extent in the U.S. (Kisliuk 2000).

Comparing traditions

The research traditions are similar in several respects. The French, Japanese and U.S. traditions are generally ecological and fall within the sciences rather than the humanities. Bahuchet had a background in zoology, Ichikawa was trained by a primatologist and surgeon in the Faculty of Science, and Bailey was trained by a primatologist in biological anthropology. By comparison, British researchers were trained in social anthropology and utilized humanities and social science approaches in their research.

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