Anthropology Overview Essay Research Paper

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Anthropology Overview Essay, Research Paper “The primitive world was able to achieve a harmony, unstable at times, between the needs of the individual and the requirements of community. The problem of order, responsibility and integrity were solved with the problem of bread.” -Thomas Belmonte The Broken Fountain, Belmonte’s book on urban Naples is a prime example of a society struggling to defeat the problem of “bread”. “Bread” being used here as a metaphor for the necessities of life. A society requires its members to maintain order, resposibility and integrity to achieve a harmonious social life. Belmonte found that the people of urban Naples could not maintain order due to the ever lasting struggle for “bread”. But does a lack of “bread” affect the

behavior of the members of its society? Going by the information in Belmonte’s ethnography, one could argue that a lack of “bread” can drive a society of people to a life of immorality and disoranization. The people of the urban Naples struggled for work and food. There was no work inside their section of town so the people had to travel across water to find work. Even if they were to find a quick job, it would still not be enough to properly support a family. One of the people Belmonte studied has to resort to garbage picking for any used parts he could sell or restore for money. But still that was not enough. Habitually the people of urban Naples would turn to theift and other immoral acts just to get by. The people were completely dishonest with eachother that one could

never be held accountable for any piece of truth. They would rob, cheat and even kill just for “bread”. The homes in urban Naples were filled will domestic voilence. It was normal for a man to abuse his wife, for he was usually the main supporter of the family. There was no divorce there because they just could not afford it. There was no way that a family, could have been supported in Naples, with only on parent. That is why the hubands and wives would stay to gether. But somewhere behind all of the stress and violence, the members in the family still could find a moment or two to love each other. That love for eachother was one of the olny few positive aspects of their lives. In my opinion, this example of a poor community shows no respects of maintaining order,

responsibility or integrity. Due to the lack of “bread”, this social group has altered their moral beliefs, which has aroused a level of almost complete anarchy in their section of town. The problem of oranizing the individuals in a society was not solved in urban Naples. This is evident in their chaotic lifestyles and pragmatic outlook. A term of social solidarity must be met for there to be a harmonious social life. The problem with the urban Naples people is that they have not accepted an altruistic solution to their problems. The lack of “bread” seems to shy an individual away from sharing, especially when they have nothing to even share. In other societies such as the Kalahari Kung the problem of “bread” is solved with their social conditions of mechanical

solidarity. Boiling Energy, Richard Katz’s socialogical analysis on the Kung society shows us a different approach to the distibution of the essentail elements of life. In both societies food is scarce, but does a limitation on the food supply truly affect the behavior of the members in its community? Katz shows us that the lack of “bread” doesn’t necessisarily have to turn a society to anarchy. His ethnography of the Kung people shows us that it is possible for a small society to work harmoniously together and overcome the problem of “bread”. The people of the Kalahari Desert are egalitarians whose lifestyle encourages the social conditions of mechanical solidarity. The Kung have survived on the infertile land of the Kalahari for many years. They have endured for so