Writer’s Choice

Extremely Important I will submit this to turn it in please be careful with plagrism.

Modern conjunctures

For hundreds of thousands of years, we human beings knew solely foraging – gathering and hunting in small bands – as our way of organizing communities and providing the necessities of life on earth. About six hundred generations have now passed, however, since the appearance of Neolithic innovations, among them horticultural, agricultural, and pastoralist modes of production in some societies in many parts of the world. Whether willingly adopted, imposed by force, or resisted and evaded to whatever degree possible, these innovations have transformed conditions of life and imagination for all of us.

More recently, in roughly the past half-millenium, further changes have been brought by the emergence and expansion of industrial = and now post-industrial – societies of vast scale and power. Each of the following sources gives an anthropological account of people whose distinctive ways of organizing social life and knowing the world around them have been shaped by these larger modern social forces and historical events:

– Brody, The Other Side of Eden (hunters of arctic and sub-arctic north America);

– González, Zapotec Science (farmers of southwestern Mexico);

– Evans-Pritchard, The Nuer, and Holtzman, Nuer Journeys, Nuer Lives (pastoralists of southern Sudan); and

– Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma, and Moss, ‘The extraordinary science of addictive junk food’ (post-industrial lifeways of the United States)

Answer these questions with reference to all four groups of people, and to all of the above sources:

* In your judgment, what most sharply distinguishes each group and its ways of life in the long term (as these are described by the respective authors)?

* What are the most significant social and historical forces responsible for changing these ways of life in the recent past and today?

Then, in a final paragraph or so:

* Identify a situation in your own life or in the lives of people you know in which similar social and historical forces or developments play a major role. Describe the situation and the group(s) of people involved briefly and precisely. How are the people involved affected by these forces or historical trends, and how are they working with or against or around them? What insights or conclusions do you propose from comparing this situation – and the social and historical forces involved – with those faced by one or more of the other groups you have discussed?

If you like, please use examples from class meetings (lecture, videos, slides, etc.) or recommended online sources (examples: the videos Nanook of the North, Invisible Indians, The Nuer, Lost Boys of Sudan, We Come As Friends; Michael Pollan talks) to further develop your line of thought. For at least one topic (Inuit; Zapotec; Nuer; US), please also include substantial material from library or online sources, with full citation, to add scope and detail to your paper.

Please limit your essay to 1500 words, and use the full guidelines below as a checklist before submitting your paper.


Please be specific and illustrate your points where appropriate with key details from these texts and from class notes. Feel free to write in the first person where appropriate (i.e., “I think…”, “Here I am contrasting…”, etc.). Stay focused on discussing the texts assigned accurately and in detail, and in clearly developing your example from your own daily life or the lives of people you know, rather than introducing other materials or opinions or topics or experiences in your essay. Where you state your judgment or opinion, give specific evidence and clear arguments, especially cited from the texts, for your position.

* Study carefully any comments given on your first paper and on your Blackboard posts. Fix problems noted, and review your work specifically to correct and improve it in these regards. See the Blackboard tab ‘Reading and writing’ for guides to correct punctuation, especially commas. To truly improve your writing going forward, consult, download, and archive sources there, especially the classic writer’s guide The Elements of Style, by Strunk

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