Why Did I Study Anthropology?

Why Did I Study Anthropology?

Most of the time, I don’t really like people. So why did I choose to study the study of people for three years? It’s an question I still ask myself sometimes.


As I write this, I’m sitting in an inner Brisbane suburb, just a few kms from the CBD. It’s what I would cynically call yuppie central.


And yet because these streets of suburbs are a modern village, mostly free from chain stores and somewhat artistically or skill based, it feels like it should be friendlier and more village-like.


Why Did I Study Anthropology?


Maybe it’s the way they’ve tried to make it a little bit like cafes in Europe; the coffee drinkers get to observe the passers-by. The Lexus & BMW drivers, parked out front of the cafes, get to recline and network over a hot drink in the sunny Brisbane winter, while I sleepily scurry by to an interview with a nearby recruitment agency.


Does this create a status structure, or am I placing my own interpretations on the situation? I certainly can’t afford a Lexus or BMW, but I also don’t believe that owning one makes you better than me. Does the slightly artistic nature of independent stores mentally focus me to look at visual clues first?


Of course, this is just all my own perception that I’m laying on this suburb. Of course villages in times of past still had upper and lower class areas; taboos; social structures and rules to abide by.


Or am I sleep deprived and gibbering? Over analysing? Under analysing?




So why did I study anthropology?


I have had experiences I never would have without it. I have been so privileged to work with individuals and communities that I never would have met or seen without this background. I have (hopefully) helped people along the way.


It’s much like the blogging community in a way. So many experiences that you wouldn’t have had before blogging.


But in the end, the truest & simplest reason is that anthropology just sits well with me. It suits me.


How do you feel about your education and work? 


9 Replies to “Why Did I Study Anthropology?”

  1. I always wanted to study anthropology. How exciting that must have been. I have other friends who are also graduates of this course who ask the same questions as you. They are always talking about how it has messed with their minds!!

    1. It really makes you never stop asking questions, it must be like living with a child on those “why?” days haha. So often I will ask a question and people think it’s just rhetorical or I’m joking…but I’m serious!

  2. I really enjoyed anthropology in undergrad but liked psychology even more and hence chose the latter as my major. In the end though, it still has to do with people and I find these fascinating. What I find even more fascinating is that there are never any solid answers because human beings are so different…so unpredictable!

    1. I think you have to really love the so called “soft sciences” for the lack of solid answers, that has to excite you rather than frustrate you!

  3. Seeking Victory says: Reply

    This does sound really interesting and I think the whole point of education should be to inspire you to keep learning. I studied pharmacy first- such a frustrating profession; acting second-love it but don’t want to live on poverty line:) ; now studying wine. I wish I had found what I wanted earlier but change is good too.

    1. I think the value of study is decreasing in traditional ROI type terms due to the fact there’s no such thing as a career for life anymore. But the value of education itself is always valid!

  4. Although my education hasn’t gone past high school and a couple of simple tafe courses, I still love to learn in other ways. I have learnt so much from just blogging alone. Employment, no matter what it is or what age can still be a learning curve.
    I don’t think A BMW driver is better than me either, I like to think that most of them still owe thousands on them ha ha. I could most definitely not afford to shop in one of those stores, but would happily sit in the cafe and watch the world go by in front of me 🙂

    1. Education comes in so many forms and people who love learning will keep learning!

      I also wonder how much people owe on cars haha.

  5. […] posted before about my education. Like many people who study anthropology, I’ve never had a job title of […]

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