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Cultural Relativism. Analysis. Social Sciences Essay (Essay Sample)


Look at the file, the subject is Introduction to Sociocultural Anthropology




Pick one of the following questions and write a four-page, double-spaced essay.  You do not need to do any extra reading to answer these questions; they can (and should) be answered based on the readings you already did for class.  Cite at least two relevant readings (in any format that is in academic use, using the same format consistently). Quote from readings where relevant. Be sure to include a concise introductory paragraph that outlines your main arguments and includes a thesis statement.


The focus of this question is on the readings, not on your own experience or on interviews with others. 


1)  Cultural relativism has been a core precept of anthropology since Franz Boas, who saw the concept as a bulwark against Western cultural imperialism.  However, in the contemporary era of globalization and transnational human rights activism, the limits of cultural relativism are now keenly debated within anthropology. Discuss the usefulness and the limitations of cultural relativism with reference to at least two readings.  Feel free to bring in lecture material too, if relevant.     

2)  “Capitalism is not an economic system, but a world-outlook.”- Francis Parker Yockey.  Drawing on readings and lecture material, in what ways is capitalism a cultural system.

3) Throughout this course we have explored how categories—such as race, gender and sexuality—that we take as natural are actually socially constructed. Choose one of these categories, and using the class readings to support your argument, explore how it is socially constructed.


4) This article from the Washington Post describes a sociological study of anti-vaccine activists: https://www(dot)washingtonpost(dot)com/health/2019/03/21/anti-vaxxers-trolled-doctors-office-heres-what-scientists-learned-attack/?utm_term=.102b31a2966b.   Although the article does not explicitly say so, it is clear that the sociologists must have infiltrated the activists’ closed facebook group under false pretenses.   Do you regard this study as ethical?  (Although the researchers were sociologists, make reference to the AAA Code of ethics in your answer.  Feel free to bring in other readings and lecture material too).  Would it have made any difference if the researchers were journalists?


5) Based on the material in Jason de Leon’s book Land of Open Graves (as well as what you learned from lectures and some of the other readings on migration), what is driving border crossings from Mexico to the U.S.?  Why does the deterrent policy de Leon describes not seem to work?  (Or is it working?)





Cultural Relativism
Student’s Name
Cultural Relativism
Cultural relativism is a philosophical approach that asserts that it is challenging to make judgments and evaluations against other cultures. This originates from the premise that a person is a product of their culture. Cultural relativism highlights that the terms right and wrong are entirely determined by the culture that they are being utilized in (Peoples & Bailey, 2011). The actions of a person can be viewed at with other considerations being taken into account especially the culture and religion they grew up in. The paper will highlight the importance and usefulness of cultural relativism while at the simultaneous illustrating the limitations associated with the cultural relativist approach.
Analysis of cultural relativism
Cultural relativism refers to a process that allows a person to define their rightness or wrongness of their morality and ethics based on their own circumstances. It provides individuals with an opportunity to change their perspectives at the most fundamental level without suffering the consequences of those actions (Carson, 2012). Additionally, it eliminates the rigid standards that societies typically create that require all people to think, speak and act in a particular manner. Cultural relativism discards all definitions from society as it continually enhances h perspective of the individual. All people have their moral code which they use to adhere to.

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