Essay Title: 

Anthropology

March 30, 2016 | Author: | Posted in anthropology, life sciences

Boasian School 1

Running Head : BOASIAN SCHOOL

Leslie White ‘s and Julian Steward ‘s

Responses to the Boasian School of Anthropology Boasian School 1

The Boasian school of anthropology , headed by Franz Boas , was among those that pioneered modern concepts in anthropology . The Boasian school was critical of overgeneralizing perspectives or theories in the sciences , including the cultural evolutionary school in anthropology choosing instead to adopt rigorous empiricism in its approach

The Boasian school believed in the world having distinct cultures and that cross-cultural generalizing often made in the [banner_entry_middle]

natural sciences are not possible in anthropology . The school today uses the “four field approach ” that divides the field into socio-cultural , biological linguistic and prehistoric anthropology

While Leslie White was educated in the Boasian school of anthropology he later began to question the anti-evolutionary views of his early education . He developed and advocated an anthropological , ethical and political view of the world almost targeted against the Boasian school

Leslie White embraced two contradictory models of culture : the sut generts conceptions from his Boasian education and the materialist-utilitarian framework developed out of his concern with cultural evolutionism . White never reconciled the two but he definitely gave stress to the Boasian-based sut generts in case of conflicts

White feared that the Boasian school ‘s concept of cultural determinism represented an emasculation of anthropology and instead advocated science and evolution , particularly 19th

Boasian School 1

century theories . White regarded culture as superorganic made up of the technology , social organization and ideology levels

It should be noted , however , that White still held on to the Boasian-based sut generts and that he still tended to downgrade the impact made by the natural environment on culture and society

Julian Steward was a fellow evolutionist with Leslie White . Differing slightly from White , Julian steward ‘s concepts of evolution and progress was not limited to 19th century concepts

Steward , who was a pluralist in terms of openness to other views , never sharply broke up with the Boasian school . But he did find anomalies in the historical particularism paradigm of the Boasian school . Steward viewed evolution as ‘recurrent forms , processes , and functions , in opposition to Boasian ‘s repudiation of evolution and regularity in culture

He also perceived culture as superorganic , similar to a limited extent to White ‘s culturology . Steward ‘s multi-linear evolution aspect of his approach to anthropology differed from the extreme particularism of the Boasian school but without adopting the antithetically unilinear evolution concept of White

Boasian School 1

References (December 2006 . The Paradoxical Anthropology of Leslie White . Retrieved from the American

Anthropological Association Website http /www .aaanet .org /gad /history /088white2 .pdf

Leslie White (2006 , July 25 . In Wikipedia , The Free Encyclopedia Retrieved 22 :16 , December

4 , 2006 , from http /en .wikipedia .org /w /index .php ?title Leslie_White oldid (May 2006 . ESP /ANT 133 . University of California Davishttp /www .des .ucdavis .edu

esp133 /133-08l .htm

Leslie White (2006 , July 25 . In Wikipedia , The Free Encyclopedia Retrieved 22 :16 , December 4 , 2006 , from HYPERLINK “http /en .wikipedia .org… [banner_entry_footer]

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