Introduction to Cultural Anthropology Essay

The purpose of this paper is to discuss about a culture that is selected from a list of various cultures. It identifies the primary mode of subsistence on the culture that is referred to. And it describes three major aspects that will later be more deeply researched in the final paper. The aspects that are discussed can include: beliefs and values, economic organization, kinship, gender relations, sickness and healing, political organization, social organization and social change.The culture selected for the purpose of this paper is the Kurdish people and the aspects presented in the paper are: beliefs and values, political organization, and sickness and healing.

The Kurdish people represent the largest ethnic group world-wide which does not have a home country. Overview This people lives in an area that is today known as Kurdistan, and it represents a region of 200,000 miles from S-E Turkey, N-E Syria, West Iran and North Iraq. The Kurds are known to be descendents of the Medes. Since the largest population of the Kurds live in Turkey (almost 40 percent), they are seen as threat to the government of this country.Turkey’s government has tried to assimilate the Kurd population into their society using forced resettlement; however, their efforts in with respect to this subject did not pay off well.

The beliefs and values, political organization, as well as sickness and healing represent the subjects to be addressed, as follows. Beliefs and Values One important fact in this area of research is the religion. According to Asatrian (2009), Kurds are Sunni Muslims of the Shafis mazhab. To better understand everything, Kurds have and had adopted a lot of religions, especially: Islam, Yazidism, Yarsan, Jewish, Alevi, Zoroastrian, as well as Christianity.However, the predominant religion of this people is the Islam. These people have first embraced the religion of Islam after Arab people have conquered them in the 17th century.

In the world of today, Kurdish people view Islam as a foundation or basis for their social justice. Besides this primary religion, they have become associated with other negatively viewed sects of the Islam religion. Their belief system dates back to the 7th and 8th centuries when Muslim rites cohabited with pre-Islamic cults associated with stones, graves, lakes, fire, trees, as well as ancestor cults. They have put a big emphasis on holy places known as pirs.When it comes to arts, the Kurdish people have a substantial and very rich oral literature, where tales, poems, proverbs, songs, and legends are predominant. The folklore of this people reveals the beliefs of people as they have reverence for their elders, courage, hospitality, love of freedom (since they do not have a place of their own, and valor.

Other beliefs and values will be referred to in the final paper. Political Organization When it comes to politics, it needs to be said that there are two major political parties as part of the political organization of Kurdish people.According to Mount Holyoke College (2012), there is the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (also known as PUK) and the Kurdistan Democratic Party. The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan was created in 1975 after Kurdish rebellions have failed in 1974 in Iraq.

The purpose of this party is to develop a modern and democratic Kurdistan. The other major political party in Kurdistan is KDP, the Kurdistan Democratic Party and it was created after the Second World War. The purpose of this party is to be the defender of democracy in Kurdistan and also to increase the brotherhood between political factions of Kurdish people.There is also the Kurdistan Women’s Union which has the purpose to be the advocate for the rights and interests of women within KDP party and Kurdish society. Sickness and Healing To understand their medical incidents, the healing process, as well as sickness itself, it needs to be said that a good understanding has to be given to their diet. The Kurdish people primary eats stew that is cooked with fresh and dried fruits. Eating lamb is another dietary habit in Kurdish culture.

Most of this people’s diet is very healthy since they are not using a lot of processed food, but predominantly the food they produce.Since they concentrate a lot on their individual power, they also focus on village medicine, as well as alternative medicine. They use less or none of the Western medicine (they system of medicine that all of us know and widely use). There is a lot of skeptic opinion when it comes to Western Medicine.

Since miscommunication can appear due to language differences, the interactions between western medicine and their alternative medicine can be quite dangerous. In the healing process they use a lot of herbs and rituals that have been passed on from generation to generation.According to Broadaway and Hamil (2006), some of these people use to fast as a religious way to be cured because they consider that fasting will make Allah heal them. All of these aspects are very complex and require substantial research in order to gain a better and clearer understanding of the Kurdish people.

These aspects will be detailed in the final paper. Conclusion Kurdish people represent a population that has been always on the move. This aspect denotes their passion and adoption for a free spirit. Even though they do not have a place on their own, these people have a very complex culture and system of beliefs.This paper has focused on creating an outline by describing several aspects of the Kurdish culture, such as: the system of beliefs and values, the political organization, and the sickness and healing processes.

All these aspects will be presented in a higher detail in the final paper.ReferencesAsatrian, G. (2009). Prolegomena to the Study of the Kurds. Iran ; The Caucasus, 13(1), 1-57. Broadaway, E.

, ; Hamil K. (2006). Kurdish Culture. Retrieved from http://www.

cwti. org/RR/Kurdish. pdf Mount Holyoke College (2012).

Kurdish Politics and Political Parties. Retrieved from http://www. mtholyoke. edu/~jlshupe/politics. html