Cultural Ecology Quiz



9 Questions

What is cultural ecology?

What is human adaptation?

Who coined the term cultural ecology?

What is the criticism of mid-20th century anthropologists and archaeologists who studied cultural ecology?

What is the focus of cultural ecology in geography?

What is traditional ecological knowledge (TEK)?

What is the role of social institutions in shaping human-environment relationships according to cultural ecology?

What is the importance of spirituality and religion in shaping human-environment relationships according to cultural ecology?

What does cultural ecology provide a holistic approach to understanding?


Cultural Ecology: Understanding Human Adaptation to Environments

  • Cultural ecology is the study of human adaptations to social and physical environments.

  • Human adaptation refers to biological and cultural processes that enable a population to survive and reproduce within a given or changing environment.

  • The natural environment, in small-scale or subsistence societies, is a major contributor to social organization and other human institutions.

  • Julian Steward coined the term cultural ecology and developed it as a methodology for understanding how humans adapt to a wide variety of environments.

  • Steward's concept of cultural ecology became widespread among anthropologists and archaeologists of the mid-20th century, though they would later be critiqued for their environmental determinism.

  • Cultural ecology is a major subdiscipline of anthropology that has branched out to cover a number of aspects of human society, including the distribution of wealth and power.

  • In geography, cultural ecology developed in response to the "landscape morphology" approach of Carl O. Sauer, focusing on flows of energy and materials and examining how beliefs and institutions in a culture regulated its interchanges with the natural ecology that surrounded it.

  • Cultural ecology applies ideas from ecology and systems theory to understand the adaptation of humans to their environment.

  • Human behaviour is ignored in cultural ecology because the omitted topics are so important that each needs a book of similar size even for a summary account.

  • Cultural ecology has triggered a crisis in geography with regards to its subject matter, academic sub-divisions, and boundaries, which was resolved by officially adopting conceptual frameworks as an approach to facilitate the organization of research and teaching that cuts cross old subject divisions.

  • In the first decade of the 21st century, publications are dealing with the ways in which humans can develop a more acceptable cultural relationship with the environment.

  • Sacred ecology is an example of a publication that deals with this topic.Cultural Ecology and its Lessons from Traditional Ways of Life in Northern Canada

  • Cultural ecology is a sub-topic that seeks lessons from traditional ways of life in Northern Canada to shape a new environmental perception for urban dwellers.

  • This conceptualisation of people and environment comes from various cultural levels of local knowledge about species and place, resource management systems, social institutions, and world views.

  • All publications on cultural ecology carry the message that culture is a balancing act between exploiting natural resources and conserving them.

  • The mismatch of culture and ecology occurred when Europeans suppressed native methods of land use and tried to settle European farming cultures on soils incapable of supporting them.

  • Sacred ecology is associated with environmental awareness, and the task of cultural ecology is to inspire urban dwellers to develop a more sustainable cultural relationship with the environment.

  • Cultural ecology provides an educational framework for understanding the relationship between humans and their environment.

  • Cultural ecology encourages the use of traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) to inform resource management practices.

  • TEK is a body of knowledge and beliefs passed down through generations that provide a way of life for indigenous peoples.

  • Cultural ecology recognizes the importance of social institutions, such as laws and customs, in shaping human-environment relationships.

  • Cultural ecology acknowledges the role of spirituality and religion in shaping human-environment relationships.

  • Cultural ecology offers a way to bridge the gap between Western scientific knowledge and traditional ecological knowledge.

  • Cultural ecology provides a holistic approach to understanding human-environment relationships by considering cultural, social, and ecological factors.


Test your knowledge on Cultural Ecology - the study of how humans adapt to their social and physical environments. This quiz will cover the basics of human adaptation, the role of cultural and biological processes in survival, and the impact of natural environments on social organization. You will also learn about the history of cultural ecology, including the work of Julian Steward, and the evolution of this subdiscipline of anthropology and geography. Take this quiz to expand your understanding of human-environment relationships and the importance of traditional ecological

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