Colonial Ethnography

Rachel S
Mind Map by Rachel S, updated more than 1 year ago
Rachel S
Created by Rachel S about 6 years ago


UG Ethnography of Africa Anthropology Mind Map on Colonial Ethnography, created by Rachel S on 02/05/2015.

Resource summary

Colonial Ethnography
  1. "Handmaidens of Colonialism"
    1. Volkekunde - Robert Gordon
      1. white Afrikaan speaking South Africans - right wing activist/applied anthropology
        1. formed by leading German missionary anthropology in 1920s VS. British social anthropology in S. Africa
          1. Racism grew because of 'poor white' numbers due to the Boer War & Depression
            1. legitamised and reproduced Apartheid social order - instrument of control and rationalisation
            2. Achille Mbembe POSTCOLONY
              1. Postcolony warps identities through political lense institutionalising it as "Objective Truth". Essentialism as hegemonic "fact" and menaing. Integration of this seen in cohabitation.
                1. violent relationship
                2. Diane Lewis - 'Anthropology and Colonialism' 1973
                3. "Reluctant Imperialists"
                  1. Evans-Pritchard
                    1. THE NUER 1940: Used by colonial government to learn about natives in order to rule. Found that the natives were unwilling to inform. British colonial officials utilized knowledge about native governments to put structures of power in place that would imitate native political systems. Findings skewed in favour of protecting Nuer? Positionality.
                      1. WITCHCRAFT, ORACLES & MAGIC IAMONG THE AZANDE 1937: in part was both criticism and answer to prejudice about mindset of natives - Emic and Etic!
                        1. 1946: Never asked for advice by colonial admin on ow to deal with people, work just used to gain understanding to conquer. Colonial anth opened way for critical work on philosophy of Empire and purpose/methodology - progress of anth
                        2. Wendy James
                          1. Colonial anthropologists as white liberals, protected natives from worst of Empire exploitation, but employed by Empire to help rule (applied anth.)
                            1. Radical criticism because of ways anth. findings were used (eg, Firth) and the involvement with nationalist movement in Africa (eg, Malinowski)
                              1. Firth - Anthropology generalises/essentialises in order for colonial admin to gain governance (applied anth.), Subjective view on research consciously noted but Objective truth should be strived for - Lila Abu Lughod 'Writing Against Culture'!
                                1. Malinowski -
                                2. progression from earlier racist Evolutionists/Social Darwinists, colonial anthropologists employed Cultural Relativism and Participant Observation - moral understanding and respect of natives. Problematic/ambivalent relation with Colonial Admin
                                  1. Anth. rebukes 'sacred civilizing mission' by legitamising native practices
                                    1. Anth. defend itself/validate - accusations of abstract science, the 'feeling man' - by emphasizing 'objective science' (because it is epitome of Western civilization). Ethics not addressed because of this.
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