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General > Anthropology suggestions?

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message 1: by Kristopher (new)

Kristopher | 35 comments Hello all! I'm looking for a good book that will give me a decent overview of anthropology. I'm interested in cultural as well as physical, so one covering each would be great as well. Does anyone have any suggestions?



message 2: by Murray (new)

Murray Gunn (murraygunn) | 2 comments I liked Small Places, Large Issues - Second Edition: An Introduction to Social and Cultural Anthropology for an overview of cultural anthropology. I came from an IT background to study for a Masters in Applied Anthropology. My course director recommended reading this as a bridge course.

message 3: by Kristopher (new)

Kristopher | 35 comments Well, what a lovely coincidence...I am currently working in IT and am thoroughly sick of Time for a change. Maybe this will give me the impetus I need to move on?? Thanks for the suggestion.


message 4: by Alex (new)

Alex That looks interesting, Murray. Comes with some good reviews from other GR folks too. I might take a look at it too; my anthropology education is direly lacking.

What up Kristopher!

message 5: by Kristopher (new)

Kristopher | 35 comments Alex, my are you, sir? How goes the reading quest?
I suppose anything by Jared Diamond would also be good reading for people interested in anthropology. I must confess to not being a huge fan of his writing. It feels rather monotonous.
Does anyone else have any suggestions about good intro to anthro books (that aren't textbooks?)

message 6: by Alex (new)

Alex Going good, man. Currently in an Aztec segment, so I suppose that's anthropology too. Reading Michael Smith's The Aztecs; a little dry, but informative.

I'm a Diamond fan personally, and you're right; his method of jumping between many cultures and pointing out their similarities and differences makes him an okay introduction to anthropology.

message 7: by Kristopher (new)

Kristopher | 35 comments The Aztecs looks like an interesting book. I'm not a huge fan of New World history, much preferring the Old World, but I suppose that the information from The Aztecs would be useful when we go to Mexico for our honeymoon in January.

I'm curious as to how you arrived at your reading schedule. We should get together and have a beer one night so you can tell me exactly how it works. If anything your reading seems even more diverse than mine


message 8: by Alex (new)

Alex I arrive at my schedule through a mix of insanity, people on this site, intense research that takes up a good bit of my day when I should be doing IT-related things I no longer care about, and "Ooh, that looks shiny". But yeah, we should have a beer and bitch about our jobs. You come into Boston often?

I'm a big fan of New World societies, personally. Where in Mexico are you going? I might have some good reading suggestions.

message 9: by Kristopher (new)

Kristopher | 35 comments I'm in Boston approximately Laura (Fiancee) works off of State Street until the end of the month and I work in Arlington. Free parking at my work, so I'm gentleman enough to give her a ride to and fro every day.
"IT-related things I no longer care about...." I have NO idea what that's about!

We're going to be staying at one of the all-inclusives on the "Mayan Riviera." Should be a good time.

Anyhow, PM sent...


message 10: by Alex (new)

Alex Ah cool, right there in the heart of Mayan country. Have you read 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus? It's obviously about more than Mayans, but it's also a terrific read. The authoritative book on the Maya is Michael Coe's The Maya, 7th Edition, which is extremely dry. And I've had the Popol Vuh on my shelf for years, waiting for my own trip to Mexico so I can read it while I'm there. It's sortof the Mayan bible, and that link goes to the best translation.

You're quite the gentleman indeed. I'll try to figure out a free night and give you a ring.

message 11: by Kristopher (new)

Kristopher | 35 comments hmmm...I've had "1491" on my TBR list for a long time now. This will probably give me an excuse to go ahead and buy it. I'll probably have to give "The Maya" a miss if it's dry. I'm back in school starting mid-January and will be spending a good deal of my time reading the works of dead white guys, who happen to be fairly dry a lot of the time. I'm trying to jam in as much pleasure reading as possible while I have the time. (feel like a man on death-row
Just give me a shout and we'll get together. Food, beer, bitching about'll be lovely.


message 12: by Alex (new)

Alex Yeah, the Maya is about as dry a book as I've read. It's a textbook more than anything else. But 1491 is really pretty great.

Doubt it'll be this week; when I inquired as to our schedule, I discovered that we're booked pretty much every night. WTH? Our dog means that only one of us gets to go out after work on any given night.

message 13: by Kristopher (new)

Kristopher | 35 comments We're away from the house for about 12 hours a day, which means no dog for us. We just got three kittens, which is plenty! At least cats are more self-sustaining.

I'm pretty much tied up through the week this week, too. Next week I'm good Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We'll figure it out.


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