Sample Essay on Visual Anthropology

Anthropology involves the study of past and present of human beings. The subject usual discusses cultures found across all ages in human history (Kant, Zoller and Louden, 2007). The study also aims to build on the knowledge derived from physical sciences and humanities as well as the biological and social sciences. This paper intends to use visuals to look at the past and present of an ethnic group, a term commonly referred to as the visual anthropology. The visual media chosen intends to convey the visual phenomena of a society and its culture. Visual media such as the images are used to look at the anthropological perspectives of a given society for example, their dressing, social economic activities and even acts as the necessary evidence for the cultural evolution a culture has undergone throughout history(El, 2004). For the purposes of this paper, visuals would be used to give the history of the red Indians.

Through their production and analysis, these images would help the writer to invoke visuals used in other areas in anthropology. Visual images help the writer to re-affirms the facts and points that are written down as text touching on the past and present lives of the red Indians. Like other works of photography, these images helps the writer to reveal the real identity of the red Indians, their agricultural activities, art and music while at the same time reducing the monotony of written representation ,which is mainly focused on the concepts alone.

The red Indians are believed to be the indigenous group of the United States of America. The visuals would therefore, among other things, help the writer to show the culture, activities such as music and art and writing systems of the red Indians. This study is important because it would enable the reader to have clear picture of the cultures of the group that inhabited United States million years before other groups conquered the people and settled on the land. These images would strive bring out the red Indians as peaceful people who respected nature as God’s gift to humanity.

Agriculture (Dial, 2003)

Apart from hunting, fishing and gathering, the Red Indians also engaged in farming. The group of red Indians who occupied the present Mexico, United States and South America’s Andrean region practiced agriculture. They used techniques such as planting breaks, crop rotation, terracing and irrigation to improve crop production in their farms. These crops would be enough to cater for the families and plenty enough to cover the winter season. The above images are therefore used to give a clear meaning of what the writer has said about agriculture among the red Indians.



Music (Fussell, n.d)

Native Americans used the music for various purposes such as healing, recreation and expression. The image above shows Native American music played in the present times. Native Americans tribes were known for their variety of complex music, which differed across different countries. In the present day, this tribal music still continue to win the hearts of many music lovers, enabling them to sell even with the changed climate in the industry.

Art (JJJ, 2012)


The images give a glimpse of what the Indian art looks like. The writer has incorporated these images to help him convey to the readers, the artistic vision of the red Indians across various generations. These art images shows the preserved history of the Red Indian tribe, which helps to give identity and root of the present and future generations to come.



Dial, S. (2003).The passing of the Indian era. Texas beyond History.

El, G. F. (2004). Visual anthropology: Essential method and theory. Walnut Creek, Calif [u.a.: AltaMira Press.

Fussell, F. (n.d).Native American music. New Harmonies.

JJJ. (2012). American Indian Art. International Art news.

Kant, I., In Zoller, G., & In Louden, R. B. (2007). Anthropology, history, and education. Cambridge: Cambridge University.