I'm not really sure how or why I ended up taking this "Cultural Anthropology" class, other than it was at a time that I had open. It seemed like a good idea at the time, and it sounded even better when I realized it was the transfer equivalent of ANTHRO 104 at UW (ie counts towards 2 requirements with 1 class!), but this class has been a real PITA for me in the last few weeks. I'm rocking an A in it thus far, but we spent a good chunk of the semester not in "cultural mode" but in a "general anthropology mode" before we could dig into cultural ideas.
The past few weeks have thrown 2 assignments at me that are my achilles heel: writing essays based on videos. Couple that with having to look at two different groups of people and write on the "wh" questions (who, what when, when, and especially why), and this could be potential disaster. Luckily it hasn't sent me into panic mode yet. I do have a MAJOR problem with watching videos and interpreting them, but this class has given me a "lens" to look through, which certainly helps, but it's still a bit hard for me to watch someone and come up with an idea as to why they are doing what they are doing.
I'm about to try to bang out an essay on the Achura people of Ecuador and what's been happening to them due to globalization (notably the impact of oil exploration.) I'm not really sure if I get it, or if I'm even asking (and answering) any "why" questions. I see plenty of "what" they are doing, after watching the video 5 times now, but I'm not sure if I'm hitting the crux of what this class is about (why cultures are the way they are.) I'm interested in anthropology (a possible minor, maybe in medical anthropology?), but I'm fairly certain that I will never be doing anything in the cultural anthropology field.
Whatever the case may be, this has been a great experience and has pushed me to be a better writer - which has helped me spur me on to write more blog posts. :-)