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Price: $118.95

Paperback 432 pp.
171 photos; 29 figures; 57 maps; 17 tables, 8.5" x 11"



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Imprint: OUP Canada

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Cultural Anthropology

A Perspective on the Human Condition, Fourth Canadian Edition

Emily Schultz, Robert 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 : Cultural Anthropology: A Perspective on the Human Condition is a core text for Introduction to Cultural Anthropology courses, taught at the first- and second-year at universities and colleges. Courses may also be called Introduction to Culture, Introduction to Social and Cultural Anthropology, Socio-cultural Anthropology, or Introduction to Anthropology.


  • "This is a balanced, comprehensive text that introduces students to cultural anthropology. It provides good grounding in the Canadian experience."
    --Marty Zelenietz, Saint Mary's University

  • "This is a visually rich textbook that covers a wide range of classical and contemporary material effectively, emphasizing Canadian experiences."
    --Sara Shneiderman, University of British Columbia

  • From the Third Canadian Edition:

    "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

All chapters end with:
- Living Anthropology box
- Key Terms
- Chapter Summary
- Critical Thinking Questions
- Suggested Readings
- Related Websites
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 the Emergence of "The Field"
Anthropology and the Colonial Encounter
Towards 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
Individual Psychology and Context
6. Inequality in the Contemporary World: Class, Caste. Race, Ethnicity, and Nationality
Nation and Nationalism
7. Social Relationships: Marriage, Family, Kinship, and Friendship
Family Structure
Family and Change
Kinship and Systems of Relatedness: Ways of Organizing Human Interdependence
Beyond Kinship
Theories of Relatedness: Kin-Based and Non-Kin-Based Societies
8. Making a Living
Nature, Culture, and Landscape
Culture and Livelihood
Subsistence Strategies
Phases of Economic Activity
Distribution and Exchange
A Dialectic between the Meaningful and the Material
9. Play, Art, Myth, and Ritual
Combining Play, Art, Myth, and Ritual
10. 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
Epidemiology and Public Health
Being Applied
11. 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
12. 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
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 View at Large
Two Examples of Practical Applications
Anthropology and Policy
Anthropology and the Challenges of Global Citizenship
Awareness and Uncertainty
Freedom and Constraint

Instructor's Manual
· Sample syllabi
· Grading rubric
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)
Student Study Guide
- A Critical Look end-of-chapter essays NEW
- Video links NEW
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
PowerPoint slides
For each chapter:
· Approximately 25-30 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
· Answers with page references
Image Bank
· All photos, figures, maps, and tables from the book available electronically
E-book ISBN 9780199028573

Emily A. Schultz is a professor of anthropology at St Cloud State University.

Robert H. Lavenda is a professor of anthropology and chair of the Department of Anthropology at St Cloud State University.

Roberta (Robin) Dods is an associate professor of anthropology at the University of British Columbia, Okanagan campus. She brings extensive experience in both the field and classroom to her writing and Canadianization of OUP's bestselling American text.

Core Concepts in Cultural Anthropology - Robert H. Lavenda and Emily A. Schultz
Reading Cultural Anthropology - Pamela Stern
Making Sense in the Social Sciences - Margot Northey, Lorne Tepperman and Patrizia Albanese
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

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 an 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 scientific modes of inquiry. (Ch. 10)
New to this Edition
  • Living Anthropology boxes written by PhD students and up-and-coming anthropologists from across Canada introduce contemporary anthropological issues and their research implications.
  • Expanded coverage of contemporary topics, including gender and sexuality, Indigenous perspectives, technology, ecology, globalization, and the environment.
  • Reorganized table of contents introduces coverage of inequality earlier in the text.
  • Fully updated throughout, reflecting the latest scholarship in the discipline.