The relationship between anthropology and psychology is very close.
Psychology focuses on individual behaviour whereas anthropology concentrates on the collective behaviour of human.
Psychology finds the nature of human behaviour on different condition, the root cause of behaviour but socio-cultural anthropology deals with the influence of cultural environment on human behaviour.
Let’s go into a detailed analysis of the relationship between anthropology and psychology.
Relationship between Anthropology and Psychology
The Psychological effect on human is described by evolutionist and various cultural schools. They expressed various theory in describing human behaviour in individually and in collectively.
Cultural personality Schools
National Character studies
National character studies attempt to map regularities of psychological process, as of emotion, motivation, and learning, which are characteristic of specified groupings of men and women.
Every nation has different character irrespective of individual differences. All the member of the nation behaves in the same character although there are many differences between them.
✔Franz Boas, an anthropologist, stressed socio-cultural factor in describing the behaviour of man in society.
He is popularly famous for cultural relativism theory, which held that all cultures were essentially equal but simply had to be understood in their own terms. Comparing two cultures was tantamount to comparing apples and oranges; they were fundamentally different and had to be approached as such.
This marked a decisive break with the evolutionary thinking of the period, which attempted to organize cultures and cultural artefacts by an imagined level of progress. For Boas, no culture was more or less developed or advanced than any other. They were simply different.
✔The other two evolutionists E.B Taylor and L.H Mason said the concept of Psychic unity to describe the evolution of cultural variation in various institutional society.
The postulate of “the psychic unity of mankind” states that all human beings, regardless of culture or race, share the same basic psychological and cognitive make-up; we are all of the same kind.
The postulate was originally formulated by Adolf Bastian, the “father of German anthropology”, who was a classical German humanist and a cultural relativist, who believed in the intrinsic value of cultural variation.
From the discussion we can surely say that there are many similarities between anthropology psychology. Withe the emergence of biological anthropolgy and social psychology, the both subject come more closer and share a more common zone.