E3S Web Conf.
Volume 249, 20214th International Conference on Sustainability Science (CSS2020)
|Number of page(s)||9|
|Section||Sustainability, Community, Indigenous Knowledge and Gender|
|Published online||07 April 2021|
Ethnoscience A Bridge To Back To Nature
Faculty of Humanities, Department of Anthropology, Gajah Mada University, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
* Corresponding author: email@example.com
Ethnoscience is a paradigm emerged in anthropology in mid-1950s, as a further result of the attempts made by some American anthropologists to redefine the concept of culture that will be in line with the new model they adopt for their study and description of culture that is descriptive phonology. For ethnoscientists culture is not a material or behavioural phenomenon. It is an ideational phenomenon. In Goode-nough’s word, “culture is not a material phenomenon; it does not consist of things, people, behavior or emotions. It is rather the organization of these things. It is the forms of things that people have in mind, their models for perceiving, relating and otherwise interpreting them as such..” (1964: 36). Culture is thus a system of knowledge. The culture of a people is their ethnoscience (ethnos = people; scientia = knowledge). Since culture is a very broad category, no anthropologist can do research on a peo-ple’s culture as a whole. He can only investigate and describe some parts of it. Thus, Harold Conklin (1954) focussed his research among the Hanunoo in the Phillippines on their knowledge about their environment, or their ethnoecology. Even then, ethnoecology is still a very broad category, for it encompasses flora, fauna and other material inanimate objects. Later ethnoscience researchers pay their attention to smaller parts of the phenomena. Several branches of study then sprouted from ethnoecology, focussing on some elements the environment, such as ethnozoology, ethnobotany, ethnoastronomy, ethnopedology, etc. From ethnozoology, new branches of study -narrower in scopeappeared, such as ethnoornithology, etnoichtyology, ethnoherpetology. These bran-ches show how the attentions of the researchers go deeper and deeper to the tiny details of the environment, of the nature, and how the people view, give meaning and relate themselves to them. These studies show that ethnoscience has helped humans to gain better understandings of and their relations to the nature. It is in this sense that ethnoscience has become a bridge to go “back to nature”.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2021
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