Economic Anthropology. Economic Anthropology. Economics is the study of production, distribution, and consumption of resources. Economic Anthropology studies economics in a comparative perspective . A society’s economy consists of:. Production Consumption Distribution Exchange.
Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.
Classical economic theory assumed that individuals universally acted rationally, by economizing to maximize profits, but comparative data shows that people frequently respond to other motivations than profit.
“The act of giving or taking one thing in return for another”
i.e. exchange is important for the establishment and maintenance of social relationships
“If Friends make gifts, Gifts Make Friends”
WHO exchange relationships
WHAT what is the significance and meaning of what is
WHERE what is the significance and meaning of where it is exchanged
WHEN on what occasions
WHY social reasons
HOW ceremony, mechanisms,
Patterns of exchange and circulation, lead us to the heart of social and cultural organization
Mauss points to three fields of obligation: to give, to receive and to repay
Gifts, according to Mauss, create relationships not only between individuals but between groups, relationships which take the form of total prestations
1872 - 1950
What rule of legality and self-interest, in societies of a backward or archaic type, compels the gift that has been received to be obligatorily reciprocated? What power resides in the object given that causes its recipient to pay it back?” (Mauss 1925)
A form of ceremonial exchange of gifts employed by indigenous groups on NW coast of BC (Tlingit, Haida, Tsimshian and Kwakiutl (Kwakwaka'wakw))
Crossing the strait
The Kwakiutl house is constructed of cedar boards on a framework of heavy logs. The ridge extends from front to back, the roof-boards run from ridge to eave, and the wall boards are perpendicular.
The word means ‘to feed’ or ‘to consume’
Chilkat Blanket" 1890-1900, Tlingit
Parties, as they are now sometimes called, commemorate a significant event in an extended family's or clan's collective life. They are held today for baby showers, namings, weddings, anniversaries, special birthdays, graduations, and as memorials for the dead
Twined grass basketNootka/Makah, British Columbia/Washington
Cedar carrying basket with handles
The obligation to receive
The obligation to reciprocate
· social mobility,
· manufacturing processes,
· issues of style,
· conventions of gift-giving.
Gift Exchange does not operate according to market laws, but the social rules of power, symbol, convention, etiquette, ritual, role and status.
The movement of raffia cloth among the Lele is another example of the mediation of status by goods.
Younger men need raffia to marry. But raffia is made and controlled by older men. In order to have access to raffia and hence marriage, younger men need the social approval of older men.
Since more raffia is required to marry than any one man can produce, it takes community approval to marry.
In modern economy, men can gain access to raffia through wage labor. This undercuts authority of elders and leads to charges of the selling of brides.
Kula Ring: vast inter-island system of exchange of certain classes of ritual objects — men’s armbands and bracelets
There is no practical utility
Each valuable has its own name and history
Owning them provides the owner prestige and pride
social distance determines the nature of the exchange
Haggling at the market of Riobamba, Ecuador
Generalized Balanced Negative
distant kin relationships
is primary motivator
Prevalence in band societies
Exchange among social unequals
These workers in Yunnan Province, China, strive for an equal distribution of meat.
Redistribution in Western Society