Essay, 2 pages (500 words)

Cultural anthropology

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Cultural Anthropology The best thing about anthropology is that it teaches people about the human condition. A person only has one life, and it is impossible to experience everything in such a short space of time. In the past people grew up in one place and usually remained there. They had one kind of belief system, and very often one kind of job. This means that they only had the chance to see a small part of what the world has to offer.
Nowadays, on the other hand, with globalization and modern transport systems, people can travel a lot more and experience different cultures and lifestyles. I have seen tourists, however, who travel to distant lands, but still eat their own national food and speak their own languages. This is because they do not know how to observe and learn from other cultures. Anthropology teaches the skills of learning from others, and seeing difference as something positive.
Anthropology is showing me that people are going to have to learn to adapt to new working conditions in the future. I am worried that some people will not handle unemployment very well, and they will not be able to find work because manufacturing is disappearing in some countries. I would like work in an area like job and skills training so that I can help people to adapt to the technology and other skills they will need. I think it is not just about learning to use the computer or understanding the information that comes through different media. I think people will have to learn to cope with being alone in their homes, and working from there, for example, because there is going to be too much pollution with transport to and from large cities. This means that people need to learn how to have a social life that is not connected directly with the place of work. They might have to find virtual friends, or create a different society for home workers.
I can remember the first time that I was in a large group of native English speakers. My English was not very good, and suddenly I was afraid of that situation. The reason for my fear was that the people were talking very loudly, and laughing with each other. I thought they were rude, and I did not want to be a part of the group. This made me miserable. If I had known about anthropology back then, I would have realized that I was making a big mistake. I was applying the rules of my culture to a different situation. The truth is that actually they were not rude. They were just being friendly. When they call each other names and push each other around, it is just the way that they have of showing that they trust and like each other. Now I understand this, and I do not mind that it is different from the way that I would normally talk at home. I can see that customs are different here. This is a good lesson to take with me into all situations where I will encounter something new.

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