why anthropology?

They say “start as you mean to go on.” An apt phrase for the start of a new year, but never quite accurate. After all, don’t many of us spend New Year’s Day hungover and eating all manner of bad food? Therefore, I find it best not to attach too much significance to the date. As I said in my last post, I don’t make resolutions. In the past, I’ve thought of the academic year more than the calendar year, and I prefer to use my birthday (31 October) to think of what I’ve “accomplished” in the intervening months.

That’s not to say there isn’t some value to setting a beginning and an end to a year using the traditional calendar year. Even people who have no intention of keeping a New Year’s resolution make them. It can be symbolic, or at least a starting off point. With that in mind, I do plan to do my best to make 2012 a memorable one.

Most of this year will revolve around obtaining my master’s degree, and that is where I’d like to focus this post. Ever since I decided I wanted to study anthropology, I’ve gotten a lot of mixed responses, mostly confused and/or blank expressions. What is anthropology, and why am I studying it?

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