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This philosophy of anthropology section is within philosophy of social science, so the term 'anthropology' is here taken as short for social and cultural anthropology. Philosophy of anthropology aims to contribute to our understanding of anthropology as a discipline through doing philosophy. Most works within this category fall into one or more of the following areas. (1) Attempts to answer questions about the nature or value of anthropology, e.g. what distinguishes anthropology from other disciplines? is it possible to pursue  anthropology as a science?  (2) Attempts to identify the commitments of a given type of anthropology, e.g. functionalist anthropology, structuralist anthropology; and also philosophical evaluations of these commitments. (3) Attempts to define more general concepts that are closely connected to anthropological research, e.g. the concept of a culture, the concept of a belief system; and also evaluations of their value to anthropology.

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  1. J. Abbink & Hans Vermeulen (eds.) (1992). History and Culture: Essays on the Work of Eric R. Wolf. Het Spinhuis.
    Introduction Jan Abbink and Hans Vermeulen This volume consists of essays and studies by authors inspired by the work of Eric Wolf, a central figure in ...
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  2. Marc Abélès (2008). Anthropology at the French National Assembly : The Semiotic Aspects of a Political Institution. In E. Neni K. Panourgia & George E. Marcus (eds.), Ethnographica Moralia: Experiments in Interpretive Anthropology. Fordham University Press.
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  3. David Abram (2010). Becoming Animal: An Essay on Wonder. Pantheon Books.
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  4. Michael Adler (2005). Collaborative Knowledge : Carrying Forward Richard Ford's Legacy of Integrative Ethnoscience in the American Southwest. In Michelle Hegmon, B. Sunday Eiselt & Richard I. Ford (eds.), Engaged Anthropology: Research Essays on North American Archaeology, Ethnobotany, and Museology. University of Michigan, Museum of Anthropology.
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  5. J. Agassi (1987). Book Reviews : Understanding Cultures, Perspectives in Anthropology and Social Theory. By ROBERT C. ULIN. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1984. Pp. Xvii + 200. U.S. $19.95. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences 17 (2):278-283.
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  6. González Alcantud & José Antonio (2008). Sísifo y la Ciencia Social: Variaciones Críticas de la Antropología. Anthropos.
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  7. Catherine Alexander (2007). Rationality and Contingency : Rhetoric, Practice and Legitimation in Almaty, Kazakhstan. In Jeanette Edwards, Penelope Harvey & Peter Wade (eds.), Anthropology and Science: Epistemologies in Practice. Berg.
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  8. F. Allan Hanson (1986). Strictures and Ratiocinations: I. C. Jarvie's Philosophy for Anthropology. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 16 (4):489-499.
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  9. Catherine Allerton (2007). What Does It Mean to Be Alone? In Rita Astuti, Jonathan P. Parry & Charles Stafford (eds.), Questions of Anthropology. Berg.
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  10. M. Ananth (2001). Book Review: Explaining Culture: A Naturalistic Approach. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences 31 (4):563-571.
  11. David G. Anderson (2005). Why California? The Relevance of California Archaeology and Ethnography to Eastern Woodlands Prehistory. In Michelle Hegmon, B. Sunday Eiselt & Richard I. Ford (eds.), Engaged Anthropology: Research Essays on North American Archaeology, Ethnobotany, and Museology. University of Michigan, Museum of Anthropology.
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  12. Myrdene Anderson & Devika Chawla (2007). Exploring the Semiosic Tensions Between Autobiography, Biography, Ethnography, and Autoethnography. Semiotics:1-9.
    The Saami assert that "to move on is better than to stay put" (jot'tit lea buorit go orrot). The senior (in more ways than one) author, Myrdene Anderson, found as a Saami ethnographer that her life history resonated well with this Saami philosophy. In addition, Anderson had adopted from her own heritage the adage that "one can't hit a moving target". The Saami would also be comfortable with that formula. Together, one might minimally collapse and paraphrase both adages as: "a (...)
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  13. Kurt F. Anschuetz (2005). Landscapes as Memory : Archaeological History to Learn From and to Live By. In Michelle Hegmon, B. Sunday Eiselt & Richard I. Ford (eds.), Engaged Anthropology: Research Essays on North American Archaeology, Ethnobotany, and Museology. University of Michigan, Museum of Anthropology.
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  14. Eduardo P. Archetti (2006). How Many Centers and Peripheries in Anthropology? : A Critical View of France. In Gustavo Lins Ribeiro & Arturo Escobar (eds.), World Anthropologies: Disciplinary Transformations Within Systems of Power. Berg. 113--32.
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  15. Heidi Armbruster & Anna Lærke (eds.) (2008). Taking Sides: Ethics, Politics, and Fieldwork in Anthropology. Berghahn Books.
    This volume, written by a new generation of scholars engaged with contemporary global movements for social justice and peace, reflects their efforts in trying ...
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  16. O. I͡U Artemova (2009). Koleno Isava: Okhotniki, Sobirateli, Rybolovy Opyt Izuchenii͡a Alʹternativnykh Sot͡sialʹnykh Sistem.
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  17. Rita Astuti (2007). What Happens After Death? In Rita Astuti, Jonathan P. Parry & Charles Stafford (eds.), Questions of Anthropology. Berg.
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  18. Rita Astuti, Jonathan P. Parry & Charles Stafford (eds.) (2007). Questions of Anthropology. Berg.
    Anthropology today seems to shy away from the big, comparative questions that ordinary people in many societies find compelling. Questions of Anthropology brings these issues back to the centre of anthropological concerns. Individual essays explore birth, death and sexuality, puzzles about the relationship between science and religion, questions about the nature of ritual, work, political leadership and genocide, and our personal fears and desires, from the quest to control the future and to find one's "true" identity to the fear of (...)
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  19. Marc Augé (1999). The War of Dreams: Exercises in Ethno-Fiction. Pluto Press.
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  20. Marc Augé (1998). A Sense for the Other: The Timeliness and Relevance of Anthropology. Stanford University Press.
    If the end of exoticism is one of the characteristics of our time, and if classical anthropology based its study of alterity on this exotic distance from the other, is anthropology still possible, and if so, to what end? The author uses these questions as a point of departure for a probing interrogation of ethnological practice, starting with Le;vi-Strauss. The author advocates an anthropology of 'proximity' in place of the usual anthropology of distance. He has studied such emblematic places of (...)
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  21. Monica Azzolini (2010). The Political Uses of Astrology: Predicting the Illness and Death of Princes, Kings and Popes in the Italian Renaissance. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 41 (2):135-145.
  22. Isabelle Balsamo (ed.) (2005). Imitation Et Anthropologie. Maison des Sciences de L'Homme.
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  23. Johannes Balthasar (1991). Anthropological Ideograms. What Kind of Species is Man? Philosophy and History 24 (1/2):29-29.
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  24. Alan Barnard (2000). History and Theory in Anthropology. Cambridge University Press.
    Anthropology is a discipline very conscious of its history. Alan Barnard has written a clear, detailed overview of anthropological theory that brings out the historical contexts of the great debates, tracing the genealogies of theories and schools of thought. His book covers the precursors of anthropology; evolutionism in all its guises; diffusionism and culture area theories, functionalism and structural-functionalism; action-centered theories; processual and Marxist perspectives; the many faces of relativism, structuralism and poststructuralism; and recent interpretive and postmodernist viewpoints. This is (...)
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  25. S. R. Barrett (1989). On Anthropological Knowledge. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 19 (1):103-104.
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  26. S. R. Barrett (1985). Book Reviews : The Building of British Social Anthropology. By Ian Langham. Dordrecht: Holland, Boston: U.S.A., London: England: D. Reidel Publishing Company, 1981. Pp. XXXII + 392. $72.50 (Cloth), $29.50 (Paper. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences 15 (1):103-107.
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  27. Stanley R. Barrett (1984). Racism, Ethics and the Subversive Nature of Anthropological Inquiry. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 14 (1):1-25.
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  28. Debbora Battaglia (2007). Where Do We Find Our Monsters? In Jeanette Edwards, Penelope Harvey & Peter Wade (eds.), Anthropology and Science: Epistemologies in Practice. Berg.
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  29. Sieghard Beller, Andrea Bender & Douglas L. Medin (2012). Should Anthropology Be Part of Cognitive Science? Topics in Cognitive Science 4 (3):342-353.
    Anthropology and the other cognitive science (CS) subdisciplines currently maintain a troubled relationship. With a debate in topiCS we aim at exploring the prospects for improving this relationship, and our introduction is intended as a catalyst for this debate. In order to encourage a frank sharing of perspectives, our comments will be deliberately provocative. Several challenges for a successful rapprochement are identified, encompassing the diverging paths that CS and anthropology have taken in the past, the degree of compatibility between (1) (...)
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  30. Eeva Berglund (2007). Information Society Finnish-Style, or an Anthropological View of the Modern. In Jeanette Edwards, Penelope Harvey & Peter Wade (eds.), Anthropology and Science: Epistemologies in Practice. Berg.
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  31. Eeva Berglund (2006). Generating Nontrivial Knowledge in Awkward Situations : Anthropology in the United Kingdom. In Gustavo Lins Ribeiro & Arturo Escobar (eds.), World Anthropologies: Disciplinary Transformations Within Systems of Power. Berg.
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  32. Paul Richard Blum (2013). I Felt so Tall Within: Anthroplogy in Slave Narratives. Annals of Cultural Studies (Roczniki Kulturoznawcze) 4 (2):21-39.
  33. Paul Richard Blum (2010). Das Wagnis, Ein Mensch Zu Sein: Geschichte - Natur - Religion. Lit Verlag.
    "Die eigentliche Optik Paul Richard Blums sollte man akkurat als holistisch bezeichnen. Es handelt sich um ein verborgenes Streben nach Ganzheitlichkeit, das diesem Buch eine methodologische Einheit gibt. ... Ein Mensch zu sein nach dem Zeitalter der Renaissance und Moderne ... bedeutet die Aufgabe, sich in einer strukturellen und inhaltlichen Offenheit zu situieren, die die verschiedenen Antworten auf die Frage: Was heißt es, ein Mensch zu sein? in der paradoxen Einheit eines neuen Humanismus zusammenbringt. ... Genau wie die Philosophie des (...)
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  34. Liliane Bodson (2000). Edited Volumes-Ces Animaux Que l'Homme Choisit D'Inhumer. Contribution a l'Etude de la Place Et du Role de l'Animal Dans Les Rites Funeraires. History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 22 (3):454.
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  35. Vivian Bohl & Alan P. Fiske (2014-02). In and Out of Each Other's Bodies: Theory of Mind, Evolution, Truth, and the Nature of the Social. Maurice Bloch. Boulder, CO: Paradigm, 2012. 161 Pp. [REVIEW] American Ethnologist 41 (1):214-215.
  36. Erika Bourguignon (1973). Diversity and Homogeneity in World Societies. [New Haven, Conn.]Hraf Press.
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  37. Pascal Boyer (1992). Causal Thinking and its Anthropological Misrepresentation. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 22 (2):187-213.
    The study of causal inferences is an essential part of the study of other cultures. It is therefore crucial to describe the cognitive mechanisms whereby subjects are led to find specific causal explanations plausible and "natural." In the anthropological literature, specific causal connections are described as the result produced by applying a general "conception of causation" or some general "theories" to specific events; the essay aims to show that these answers are either trivial or false. The "naturalness" of explanations must (...)
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  38. Pascal Boyer (1987). The Stuff 'Traditions' Are Made Of: On the Implicit Ontology of an Ethnographic Category. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 17 (1):49-65.
  39. Don Brenneis (2005). Documenting Ethics. In Lynn Meskell & Peter Pels (eds.), Embedding Ethics. Berg.
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  40. Krzysztof J. Brozi (1992). Philosophical Premises of Functional Anthropology. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 22 (3):357-369.
    The philosophical roots of Malinowski's functionalism are in the academic circles of Krakow, where three figures seem to have exerted a particularly strong influence: Pawlicki, Straszewski, and Heinrich. The predominant trend in philosophy at that time was empiriocriticism, as developed by Mach and Avenarius. Also important were F. A. Lange's interpretation of Marburg neo-Kantianism. It should be noted that the historical philosophy field was extremely broad and diverse. Functionalism, a philosophically open concept, cannot be subordinated to any one philosophical system, (...)
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  41. Michal Buchowski (1988). The Rationality of Magic. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 18 (4):509-518.
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  42. Michał Buchowski (1997). The Rational Other. Wydawnictwo Fundacji Humaniora.
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  43. Mario Bunge (2004). Mitos, Hechos y Razones: Cuatro Estudios Sociales. Sudamericana.
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  44. K. O. L. Burridge (1987). Book Reviews : The Rebirth of Anthropological Theory. BY STANLEY R. BARRETT. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1984. Pp. 266. $22.50. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences 17 (1):126-128.
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  45. Matilde Callari Galli (2005). Antropologia Senza Confini: Percorsi Della Contemporaneità. Sellerio.
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  46. Anne Campbell & Patricia C. Rice (2008). Why Do Anthropological Experts Disagree? In Philip Carl Salzman & Patricia C. Rice (eds.), Thinking Anthropologically: A Practical Guide for Students. Pearson Prentice Hall. 55.
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  47. Fenella Cannell (2007). How Does Ritual Matter? In Rita Astuti, Jonathan P. Parry & Charles Stafford (eds.), Questions of Anthropology. Berg.
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  48. Patricia Caplan (ed.) (2003). The Ethics of Anthropology: Debates and Dilemmas. Routledge.
    Since the inception of their discipline, anthropologists have studied virtually every conceivable aspect of other peoples' morality - religion, social control, sin, virtue, evil, duty, purity and pollution. But what of the examination of anthropology itself, and of its agendas, epistemes, theories and praxes? Conceived as a response to Patrick Tierney's hugely inflammatory book Darkness in El Dorado , whose allegations of immoral and negligent anthropological research in South America caused a storm of protest and debate, the book combines theoretical (...)
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  49. Janet Carsten (2007). How Do We Know Who We Are? In Rita Astuti, Jonathan P. Parry & Charles Stafford (eds.), Questions of Anthropology. Berg. 76--29.
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  50. Paul Cartledge (1988). Lakonian Art Maria Pipili: Laconian Iconography of the Sixth Century B.C. (Oxford University Committee for Archaeology, Monograph No. 12.) Pp. V+127; 96 B/W Illustrations, 23 Line Drawings. Oxford: O.U. Committee for Archaeology (Distributed by Oxbow Books), 1987. Paper, £22.00. Marlene Herfort-Koch: Archaische Bronzeplastik Lakoniens. (Münstersche Beiträge Zur Archäologie Boreas, 4.) Pp. 150; 22 Pages of B/W Plates, 6 Figs in Text. Münster: Archäologisches Seminar der Westfälischen Wilhelms-Universitat Munster, 1986. Paper. [REVIEW] The Classical Review 38 (02):342-345.
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