Throughout this course, I can easily say that I’ve many things about the world and how anthropology actually played a huge role in defining it. With the many studies and documentaries that anthropologists have produced over the years, it shed light into areas and cultures of the world that were unknown for the longest. There are though a couple of things that I can see as a recurring theme throughout this course though. One of them is the fact that America has had a huge impact on the many cultures of the world, and that that not always a god thing. Another theme that is prevalent is the fact that class structure is a real determinate of how your future may turn out. These two themes along with others were some of the things that were able to link most of the topics together.
When it comes to America, it seems that we have a lot of influence on different cultures of the world. The ideas of western culture such as the types of schools and business that we have and own have been the desire for quite a few people in other parts of the world. For other parts however, it has been more so shunned away or not wanted and yet it almost seems as if it is being pressured on them. Using the film “Life in Debt” as an example, we see local Jamaican farmers and market vendors who were fine with just having foods that were locally grown, and yet, they have to compete with imported food from America. Another example of this is during the film “Pig tusk and paper money” Henry talks about how international bank regulations have prevented him from starting up a traditional bank for his town. These regulations that America has had a huge impact on mind you. Nevertheless for the better or worse, this country still is a very influential world power.
The other theme that I see is the fact that whatever class that a person is born in most times shapes how they are going to spend their life. This may seem like an obvious statement but it does hold much truth. In the film “Into the light” we see Chinese people who were born into the lower class having to work these dangerous jobs like mining so that they can make a living. What’s worse is the fact that they have little to no hope of escaping this system. Some try to go and earn an education, but if your no within the top percentage of the class, it’s almost impossible to get a decent job. This class system is also seen in the document “Blackness, Citizenship, and the Transnational Vertigo of Violence in the Americas” where African Americans in the United States feel as if they are put into a lower class in a sense. But instead of being based on money, it was more so based on race. The thing about the lower class in almost any society or government is the fact that they have little say about what happens. This is why when it comes to classes, whichever a person is born into, most times they stay within that class with little change.