Lesson One: Fieldwork

Reading Summary

People are different. These differences represent the vast range of human potential and possibility. Our assumptions, beliefs, values, ideas, ideals – even our abilities – are largely a product of our culture.

In this lesson, travel with anthropologist Michael Wesch on his first trip to Papua New Guinea.  The lesson introduces core anthropological concepts like ethnocentrism, cultural relativism, and participant observation, while also introducing the core anthropological mindset of asking questions, making connections, and trying new things.

Read Lesson One

Recommended Additional Materials

Anthropology is the study of all humans in all times in all places.  To get a sense of the mesmerizing range of human diversity, watch Samsara (full movie).  Here is a trailer:

or watch the beautiful Human Planet series.  Here is a playlist of previews, or watch full episodes for $1.99/each on YouTube (link below):


Take Challenge One