The Amish way of life Sherri S. Archer-Taylor ANT101: Introduction to Cultural Anthropology Instructor Jason Gonzalez December 10, 2011 The Amish way of life I. The Amish way of life has many interesting concepts and unique beliefs that set them apart from any other culture. While some may see the Amish way of life as a cult, there simplistic way of life and there family values and beliefs make them one of the strongest sects in today’s society. II. The Amish primary mode of subsistence is farming. Making them Horticulturalists.
The Amish are farmers first they plant several crops every year depending on the season as well as women tending to gardens, the Amish feed themselves. A. According to Donald Kraybill (2001) the Amish have always been tillers of the soil and people of the land. B. When a young Amish couple gets married they are given a parcel of land by one of the fathers. This land is given so that the couple can get a head start on taking care of themselves and earning a living. C. The Amish people today do not use many modern day agriculture implements depending on the old ways to farm and harvest crops.
III. The economy of the Amish is growing more complex. Where they were once mostly self-sustaining they are now finding it necessary to make and sell durable goods to supplement their income. A. According to Dr. George Kreps (1997) Tourism has not affected the core of Amish culture but it has had several lasting impacts. Such as traffic and crowds which make the Amish people shy away from certain areas because they do not like to interact with the common folk. B. Land has been harder to purchase for expansion due to rising cost.
And the soil is no longer as plentiful as it once was. C. Amish now make furniture and other wood work items, and the women sew quilts and clothing to supplement the family’s income. D. Food is never sold or traded if a family can find another means of income. Food is reserved to fee the family. IV. The Beliefs and values of the Amish people are core in there society. They have been practicing these beliefs and values since the beginning of the Amish order which was sometime around the “1880”s. A. Holidays observed by the Amish re very religious during certain holidays the Amish people are more religious and family centered than any other culture. B. Amish people wear white clothes for a burial and they wear blue to a wedding. When a funeral occurs in the Amish culture there are no flowers, the coffin is plain wood, and there is no singing. A hymn is spoken, there are no eulogies. C. According to Charles Hurst (2010) the Amish have survived by being plain and depending on hardly any new technology and with limited help from outsiders. V.
While the rest of the world has progressed with technology and change the Amish have also progressed with social change. A. The Amish travel still by horse and buggy only using a car to go on long important trips such as to a hospital or to see relatives in another state. B. All men in an Amish society still wear beards. C. They are still firm in there want to be separated from the world. And place important emphasis on simplicity and humility. D. They shun members who have been excommunicated E. They still use horse and plow to farm their fields.
F. They have no internet or computers but they do use calculators. The Amish are simple people who live by farming, gardening, livestock and supplementing there income by wood working and quilt making. They choose to keep outsiders away from their lives. Their children are educated in a one room school house by another usually female of the sect. the young men help their father with farming and milking duties and the young women help garden with their mothers with cooking and watching their younger siblings.
Some people may think they are wired or that they act like a cult but their simple way of life and there strong ties to one another has insured that the Amish will continue enduring for a long time. REFERENCES Hurst Charles M. (1998) the religion and family connection 29 (13) 19 Retrieved from http://psycnet. apa. org/? &fa=main. doiLanding&uid=1988-97583-000 Kraybill, Donald B. Pages: 423 (2001) Riddle of Amish Culture (Revised Edition) Retrieved from http://site. ebrary. com/lib/ashford/doc Dr. George Kreps (1997). The Impact of Tourism on the Amish Subculture Community Dev. J (1997) 32 (4): 354-367. doi: 10. 1093/cdj/32. 4. 354
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