Searching cultures—finding uncommon commonalities | ANTH 3001 – Indigenous Peoples in the Modern World | Walden University

 How can one learn about culture? Anthropology involves examining other cultures and documenting human behavior. Sometimes it involves comparing societies in order to increase self-understanding. Comparing observations of an indigenous culture with another culture can be complicated, but may be unavoidable as a participant observer who—no matter the efforts at objectivity—will most likely see things through his or her own culture. Anthropologists often learn about indigenous groups by examining cultural elements, including language, values, symbols, rituals, customs, and beliefs. These are elements that help define a culture. In this Discussion, you compare a thought, belief, or ritual from your own culture with that of an indigenous culture. 

Review this week’s assigned readings in the course texts.

  • Select one indigenous group from the reading and review the cultural elements of that group.
  • Compare a thought, belief, or ritual that you practice in your own culture to a thought, belief, or ritual in an indigenous culture.
  • Consider how comparing aspects of two different cultures can be problematic or useful.

With these thoughts in mind:

Post one paragraph that describes your comparison of a thought, belief, or ritual in your own community with that from an indigenous culture. In a second paragraph, discuss the challenges in comparing thoughts, beliefs, or rituals from two communities in this way. Explain how this comparison might be useful.

Be sure to support your ideas by connecting them to the week’s Learning Resources, or something you have read, heard, seen, or experienced.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ postings.