Thursday, June 28, 2012

Week 3 Blog Post: Language

Part 1

I found the experiment difficult because I was having a complex conversation with my friend. She told me that she did not want to accept Facebook friend requests from her relatives, and I wanted to tell her that she should be closer to her relatives, so it was hard to me express my ideas and thoughts.
            My partner was very surprised and confused trying to understand my message. She altered her way of communication on paying more attention to my eyes and corporal expression
I would say that the culture with symbolic language can communicate complex ideas more easily because it can express ideas with big details, and the message would be clearer. The speaking culture might think that the culture that does not use symbolic language is less intelligent, and they will ignore them because they unable to make interesting arguments.
  The last semester I took math 60 with a deaf professor, and it was a great experience for me. The interpreter was always in the classroom, and sometimes it was confuse to communicate with the professor because one had to speak to the interpreter and look at the professor at same time.  I did not have big problems to understand the lectures because he always used power point presentation. My professor did not use spoken language, but through American Sign Language he use symbolic language.

Part 2

Honestly I was not able to communicate only with speech communication for the 15 minutes with no interruptions because I always use my hands, fingers and facial expression to emphasize my ideas in any conversation. After the third minute of the conversation, I noticed that I was making facial expression to make fun of my friend. This experiment was hard for me because I feel that my body language is an important part of my personality, and without it my sarcastic jokes would not be fun.

My friend seemed to be boring and not really interesting in the conversation. She got my ideas and understood what I said, but she did not feel my ideas and message.

I strongly believe that non-speech language plays an important role to communicate and interact with other people. Body language helps us to understand more clearly the personality, feelings, and ideas of others

            I would said that only selfish or really busy people do not pay enough attention to body language of others because when one is interesting in someone else, one pay attention on his/her facial expression and body movements.

I think that everyone can read body language, but sometime we do not pay attention to it. Read the body language of others is a great ability because we can understand their feelings. For example, if one day we see a friend and he said that everything is OK; we can look at his body language and know if he is telling the truth because there are some corporal expressions that show sadness and happiness. 

Part 3

I think that it would be easier to communicate my ideas with the written language and body language because my friend would understand my complex ideas by written language and know my intentions by my gestures

After read my textbook, I would say that cultures that have developed written language are very successful because written language allow cultures to transmit their knowledge and experience to the next generations.

Written language has a huge impact in globalization because it allows a culture share its ideas around the world. We can learn from another culture by reading a book or an online article. For example, many of friends on Mexico are passive bilinguals because they need to do research in American Websites

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Week 2 – Environmental Adaptations

Andean Indians

1) It hard to say what the wheatear conditions in the Andeans mountains are because they are the longest mountains in the word with a distance of 4,500 miles and their height conditions vary from place to place. Also the climate condition is affected by several factors such as Humboldt ocean currents which is cold and Patagonia which is temperate, so the Andeans mountain has different climates. For example, in Colombia is full of rainfall season with and average temperature of 64°F, in Ecuador is dry with an average temperature of 68°F, in Peru and Chile one can find a huge snow line because the Andean Mountains search an altitude over 19,000 feet.

2) High altitudes can bring health problems because oxygenate the body became harder, so one must to increase one’s breathing rate. It brings negative consequences like headache, nausea, dizziness, lack of energy and fluid buildup in lung and brain. However, Andean Indians has developed throughout the time an enlargement in theirs chest and lungs, so they can absorb more oxygen in each breath.  They can do all their physical activities with no problem.

3) One interesting culture adaptation found in Andean Indians is their agriculture, but the interesting part is how the work their land. Andean Mountains are very steep, and people cannot use fancy tractors or big machines to work, so they have to do everything with their hands. In conclusion, Andean Indians have created their own methods to work their land in a successfully way.

4) I think that the best way to describes Andean Indians would be as South Americans Indians because they are Indians with origin of different countries of South America (Chile, Colombia, Ecuador), but they share the same ethnicity.


1) The Zulu people are located in South Africa more specific in KwaZulu-Natal. According in KwazuluNatal one can expect an endless summer.
This region has a sub-tropical climate most of the year. During the summer the average temperature is between 75 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit, and in winter 68 degrees Fahrenheit. In addition
one can expect hot days most of the year,high humidity levels and a good rainfall.

2) One of the physical characteristics that Zulu people show is their dark skin which helps them to protect from the high sunlight.KwaZulu-Natal is located close to the equator, and Zulu people received a big amount of sunlight, so natural selection has provided Zulu people with dark skin which have big among of melanin. Consequently, Zulu people have a natural shield against sunburn and skin cancer.  

3) Zulu people dominate one of the most common cultural adaption around the world which is agriculture. They have been taken advantage of the good condition of rainfall, and until today agriculture is their economics base, but the main purpose of their agriculture is to feed their hungriness. Women do most of the planting and harvesting work.

4) I think that Zulu people would be best describe as black because they have develop a dark skin color, and people descendant from  Africa are categorized in the race black.

5) I think that physical and cultural adaptations have the same value, and anthropologists need to study both to do their ethnography projects. When anthropologists are investigating a population they must study its physical adaptations because they need to understand why a population has some psychical characteristic that another population do not have. For example, an anthropologist needs to figure out why Germans have a white skin and Africans dark skin. Also, Cultural adaptations are important to study because they are spirits of a population, and it defines who are they there people today because culture represent the knowledge, values and belief of a person.


Tuesday, June 12, 2012


 I think that his adjective is the best one to describe Nacirema culture. One can see throughout the whole paper how Nacirema people are so close to their religion. For example, this sentences show that Nacirema people take their time improving a spiritual health “a considerable portion of the day are spent in ritual activity.” Another, proof of their religion passion is that every family has at least one shrine.

As a consequence of be a religion society, they can also can be describing to be dogmatic because they have beliefs that are indisputable and no one can go against them. For example, “The fact that these temple ceremonies may not cure, and may even kill the neophyte, in no way decreases the people's faith in the medicine men.” It clearly shows how Nacirema people follow 100% their religious rules, and they do not seek for alternative solutions; Moreover, they do not seek for scientific expiations.

“No matter how ill the supplicant or how grave the emergency, the guardians of many temples will not admit a client if he cannot give a rich gift to the custodian.” This kind of behavior must not be allowed in any culture around the world because a human life is priceless. It very unjust that only rich people can have access to health benefits

Nacirema people are very extraordinary because they have a very different than my own culture; moreover, with all their eccentric rites they have survive for long time, and actually Horace Miner seems to be surprised of Nacirema when on his conclusion said “It is hard to understand how they have managed to exist so long under the burdens which they have imposed upon themselves”

The word culture is not an adjective, but it can describe Nacirema people because the article shows that they have shared their ideas, values and beliefs for generations.  

1) I am not America, but I been living in this culture for last 3 years, and many of my relatives are Americans. At the first moment I could not believe that the Horace Miner was describing the behavior of America culture because I described the bad side of Nacerima culture. Then I realized the American culture could not be so perfect, and if I start looking, I can find many negatives things in my own culture

2) Honestly   I do not feel qualify to say if any of my words reflect ethnocentrism because from my point of view I think that I did I good judgment about the “Nacerima culture”, but I know that I could be totally wrong.

3) I think that I cannot replace one of the words that I used because Religious, Dogmatic,  Inequitable, Incredible and culture can describe American culture (and even my own culture)

4) Avoiding ethnocentric judgments is very important in this globalized word because we have to interact with other cultures, and if we are ethnocentric, we can create conflicts and problems for absurd reasons. One should not judge another cultures from his/ her personal cultural bias because a culture can have some habits and behavior that right and acceptable for them, but can be wrong and unacceptable for one. I think that is possible to completely avoid personal cultural bias for anthropologist because they are trained to do it. Probably sometimes they make mistakes, but most of the times they are able to make a judge of a culture.