Introduction to Psychological Anthropology

Introduction to Psychological Anthropology

Psychological anthropology is not a combination of Psychology and Anthropology. In Psychological anthropology, we will look at how different aspects of Psychology influence Anthropology.

Psychological anthropology is a sub-field of Anthropology. It studies how culture influences mental health, emotions, perceptions, behaviour etc. They look at the pattern of human development.

Here we are going to discuss how the world’s different cultures impact human psychology.

Relationship between Psychology and Psychological Anthropology

Psychology is more of a western culture whereas psychological anthropology has a cross-cultural perspective. Psychological anthropology is more complex than Psychology. Psychology is the study of the mind or mental state. Psychology is cognitive.

Psychology (pic- iResearchNet)

Psychological anthropology examines the relationship between human behaviour and its culture. Psychology focus on individual behaviour. Psychologists focus on cognition and experiences while anthropologists also focus on culture and society along with experiences and cognition.

To understand Anthropology as a subject go through the article- Introduction To Anthropology

What do Psychological Anthropologists do?

Psychological anthropology more focuses on individuals rather than the whole culture as compared to general anthropology. Let us understand this through two questions-

What are the main traditions of marriage in your culture?

How do you feel about the traditions of marriage that you follow?

The second question is emphasised in psychological anthropology because it focuses on individual opinions within the culture.

Psychological anthropologists study emotions, beliefs, memory, experience, identity, desires, goals, trauma, sexuality, practices etc. They try to find how these affect the sociocultural settings. They try to understand how the human mind works.

Pic- PNGkey

Culture makes us express thoughts in different ways which is why people within the same culture have the same perception and mentality.

Examples of psychological anthropology interview questions are as follows-

Are you comfortable working in your surroundings?

How do you manage your pressure?

How do you connect with your neighbours?


Psychological anthropology has shown how humans are all the same in psychological perception and mental ability. Anthropologists tend to observe overall personality. They determine how society influences the behaviour of a man. It understands how culture, mind and personality interact.


Psychological Anthropology


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