Visual Anthropology And Cultural Anthropology

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Society is made up of ordinary items that throughout the years are given value by outsiders, people who think outside of the world they are in, or by those, who are, from a different time period. Anthropologists have been able to study the differences in human cultures and how they have evolve. “There are now four major fields of anthropology: biological anthropology, cultural anthropology, linguistic anthropology, and archaeology” (Dennis O 'Neil). Within these fields are subfields, visual anthropology is a very important subfield of cultural anthropology. Visual anthropology is the study of the history of human customs and culture through what one sees or perceives in various types of media. Therefore, “…the use of visual material in anthropological research…is the study of visual systems and visible cultures” (Banks and Morphy). Since media is seen as a representation of the truth, it is reasonable to say that it plays a major role in the accurate views of how society is. There are two categories in which I would like to describe how visual anthropology tries to describe human culture and custom: images and objects. Through visual anthropology, images, ads, and cartoons are constantly changing individual’s views and the world in which they live in. Images are not merely pictures to state the obvious, they are pictures that have a deeper meaning. Whether the meaning is shown or not shown, they convey representation of something more meaningful in the end. Stuart Hall
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