Habitat Research should not to be confounded with 'Environment and Culture-Studies'. These correspond essentially to modern environmental trends. They do not fundamentally question the conventional methods of the humanities.
- Habitat Research interprets human conditions past and present not in the isolated sectors of conventional disciplines, but basically in their environmental totality.
- Habitat Research corresponds to similar new orientations in biology and agricultural technology. There it became evident that the factual complexity of environmental conditions cannot be described by isolated disciplines. A new type of "Environmental natural scientist" (ETH-Z) is trained in multidisciplinary approaches trying to understand local systems in their complex interdependences.
- Similarly Habitat Research uses the -> Human Space Concept of -> Bollnow to define its basic approach (-> Anthropology of space ). The term Habitat becomes the fundamental term of this new method. Habitat as a spatial, territorial, economic, cultural, social, temporal unit (Similarly like the term cell in biology).
- Socially the terms habitat and settlement favour a group-view of man and his predecessors. Not man as an individual is in the centre, but the more or less continuous existence of a group in a defined unit of space. -> Subhuman Habitat
- Spatially it implies a complex dialogue between the artificial cultural domain of a settlement group and the natural environmental conditions. The theoretical clarification of these perceptive and conceptive processes can greatly contribute to the anthropology of cognition.
- Habitat implies objectively demarcated space. It is therefore closely related to material culture. In this domain of material culture, tectonic forms or buildings (in general: 'architecture') are considered as of primary importance, functionally and ideo-genetically. -> Architectural anthropology .
- With its well defined program, habitat research can describe human settlement conditions with high precision, at least in the ethnological domain where the complexities of settlement can be described. The temporary or continuous existential domain of social groups is researched topologically in regard to its system of demarcation and the ontological values these demarcations represent.
- In contrast to conventional historistic cultural anthropology, architecture and habitat anthropology shift their basic research into the present where social behavior and interpretation of material culture can be observed. Its method corresponds to what Wernhart (1980) described as ethno-(pre-)history or 'structural history'. Theories are built in the vital, then tested historically and prehistorically.
- Architecture in the sense of constructive behavior (Yerkes: 'constructivity') and habitat in the sense of existential domain are basic parameters of the corresponding anthropology. They are considered culturo-genetically primary in regard to conventional disciplinary characteristics of culture (art, religion etc.)
- Consequently, habitat research tries to avoid eurocentric terms (art, religion, philosophy), and thus uses the local values and neutral terms (world-view, or ontology instead of religion) in description of the habitat researched -> Settlement-Core-Complex .
- Using essentially these basic instruments -> Habitat Research reconstructs a -> Typology of subhuman and human settlements which, in their continuity and changes give us fascinating new insights into the continuity of -> Existential conditions of man , quite different from those given by -> Conventional disciplinary humanities .
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