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Paperback 456 pp.
162 photos; 28 figures; 50 maps; 15 tables, 8.5" x 11"



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Imprint: OUP Canada

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Cultural Anthropology

A Perspective on the Human Condition, Canadian Edition, Third Edition

Emily A. Schultz, Robert H. Lavenda and Roberta Robin Dods

Drawing on the authors' fieldwork experience, this text explores how cultural creativity, human agency, and the material conditions of everyday life interact to shape cultural practices. Discussions of ongoing controversies - including tribalism vs. globalization and increasing inequality between "have" and "have not" regions - show how cultural anthropologists can tackle the world's most pressing social problems through their specialized knowledge and skills.

Readership : Schultz/Lavenda/Dods, Cultural Anthropology 3Ce is a core text for first- and second-year level cultural anthropology courses offered out of anthropology departments.


  • "Robin Dods has done a fantastic job in showing the great variety of research being done by Canadian anthropologists and anthropologists at Canadian universities. . . . The explanations of cultural practices are robust and nuanced, the structure / agency balance is good, and there is substantial contemporary material."
    --Pamela Stern, Simon Fraser University

Part One: The Tools of Cultural Anthropology
1. The Anthropological Perspective on the Human Condition
Explanations of the Human Condition
The Anthropological Perspective: The Cross-disciplinary Discipline
Anthropology and the Concept of Culture
The Challenge of Cultural Differences
Culture, History, and Human Agency
The Promise of the Anthropological Perspective
2. Fieldwork: A Meeting of Cultural Traditions
Methods of Collecting Information
Modes of Ethnographic Fieldwork: A Short History
The Fieldwork Experience: A Brief Overview
Interactions in the Field: Interpretation and Translation
Multi-sited Fieldwork
The Effects of Fieldwork
The Production of Anthropological Knowledge
Anthropological Knowledge as Open-Ended
3. Anthropology in History and the Explanation of Cultural Diversity
The Roots of Canadian Anthropology
Capitalism, Colonialism, and "Modernity"
Anthropology and the Colonial Encounter
Toward Classifying Forms of Human Society
Studying Human Societies Today
Part Two: The Resources of Culture
4. Language
Language and Culture
Design Features of Human Language
Language and Context
Linguistic Relativity
Components of Language
Non-Verbal Communication
Pidgin Languages: Negotiated Meaning
Linguistic Inequality and Oppression
Language and Gender
The Flexibility of Language
Language and Change
5. Culture, the Individual, and Identity
Sex, Sexuality, and Gender Roles: The Creation of Subject Positions
Structural Violence and Social Trauma
Individual Psychology and Context
6. Social Relationships: Marriage, Family, Kinship, and Friendship
Family Structure
Families and Change
Kinship and Systems of Relatedness: Ways of Organizing Human Interdependence
Beyond Kinship
Theories of Relatedness: Kin-Based and Non-Kin-Based Societies
7. Making a Living
Culture and Livelihood
Subsistence Strategies
Phases of Economic Activity
Distribution and Exchange
A Dialectic between the Meaningful and the Material
8. Play, Art, Myth, and Ritual
Combining Play, Art, Myth, and Ritual
9. States of Being in Wellness and Illness
Beyond the Science - Tradition Divide
Integrated Approaches and Holism in Medical Anthropology
Cultural Interpretations and Labels of Illness and Disease
Environments and Well-Being
Health Care Delivery Systems
Being Applied
10. World View
The Role of Metaphor, Metonymy, and Symbol
Key Metaphors
World Views in Operation: Two Case Studies
Maintaining and Changing a World View
World Views as Instruments of Power
Religion and Secularism
Part Three: Organization of Life: Local to Global
11. Social Organization and Power
Varieties of Social Organization
The Search for the Laws of Social Organization
The Power to Act
Power as an Independent Entity
The Power of the Imagination
History as a Prototype of and for Political Action
Negotiating the Meaning of History
12. Inequality in the Contemporary World
Nation and Nationalism
13. A Global World
Views of the Political Economy
Cultural Processes in a Global World
Globalization and the Nation-State
Human Rights, Globalization, and the Language of Social Justice
Cultural Imperialism, Cultural Hybridization, and Cosmopolitanism
14. Applying Anthropology in Everyday Life
Anthropology in the World at Large
Two Examples of Practical Applications
Anthropology and Policy
Anthropology and the Challenges of Global Citizenship
Awareness and Uncertainty
Freedom and Constraint

Instructors Manual:
For each chapter:
Brief chapter summary
Detailed chapter summary
5-10 discussion and debate questions
Web links (from the book plus 10-15 additional sources)
PowerPoint slides:
For each chapter:
Approximately 20-25 lecture slides per chapter
Test Generator:
For each chapter:
20-30 multiple-choice questions
20-30 true-or-false questions
5-10 short-essay questions
Student Study Guide:
For each chapter:
Chapter outline
5-10 key points
Chapter key words
List of websites
List of films
5-10 discussion/essay topics
10-15 multiple choice questions
10-15 true or false questions
Video links NEW
Image Bank:
All photos, figures, maps, and tables from the book available electronically
E-Book (ISBN 9780199009732)

Roberta Robin Dods is an associate professor of anthropology in the Department of Community, Culture, and Global Studies at the University of British Columbia, Okanagan campus. She brings extensive experience both in the field and classroom to her writing and Canadianization of OUP's bestselling American text, Cultural Anthropology: A Perspective on the Human Condition.

Reading Cultural Anthropology - Pamela Stern
Paradigms for Anthropology - E. Paul Durrenberger and Suzan Erem
Gangsters Without Borders - T.W. Ward
Listen, Here is a Story - Bonnie L. Hewlett
Labor and Legality - Ruth Gomberg-Munoz
Cuban Color in Tourism and La Lucha - L. Kaifa Roland
Body & Soul - Loïc Wacquant
Making Sense in the Social Sciences - Margot Northey, Lorne Tepperman and Patrizia Albanese

Special Features

  • Adapted by a Canadian expert and working anthropologist, this bestselling text seamlessly integrates an array of Canadian examples, points of view, and issues, while highlighting Canadian contributions to the discipline.
  • Impact of globalization discussed throughout, helping students understand its implications in light of a variety of topics.
  • Broad theoretical coverage combines traditional anthropological perspectives with cutting-edge theories, offering a fresh and comprehensive treatment of standard topics.
  • Power and inequality coverage throughout addresses issues of class, caste, race, ethnicity, and nationality in the contexts of globalization, social justice, and human rights to help students understand the realities of global inequality.
  • Incorporates gender issues and feminist anthropology throughout, inviting students to appreciate how these areas touch every aspect of the field.
  • In Their Own Words boxes feature short commentaries from experts in the field, providing additional perspectives on key issues and offering insight into what it means to be an anthropologist.
  • EthnoProfile boxes offer essential information on cultural groups, providing overview of relevant geographic, linguistic, demographic, and organizational data.
  • A map of the world on the inside front cover marks the locations of cultures featured in EthnoProfile boxes.
  • Visually appealing full-colour design, along with an abundance of photos, illustrations, maps, and tables throughout, helps bring cultural anthropology to life.
  • Chapter on medical anthropology encourages students to explore the tensions and intersections between traditional knowledge and Western scientific modes of inquiry.
New to this Edition
  • A Critical Look boxes encourage students to analyze a range of cultural issues, including the construction of national identity, diaspora and identity, and mental illness.
  • Expanded coverage of gender and sexuality as well as religion - new discussion of topics such as queer theory, gendered violence, women in the working world, and religion in contemporary society offers students further insight into important areas of study within anthropology.
  • Fully updated throughout, reflecting the latest scholarship in the discipline.