UPSC anthropology preparation strategy,upsc topper interview, strategy by Devendra Kumar for anthropology, Devendra Kumar marks, necessary books for anthropology
Anthropology Strategy by Devendra Kumar: UPSC CSE 2016 Topper Rank 97
The optional subject is the only choice you will get in CSE. So, if you are choosing Anthropology as your optional subject then this article will be helpful for you. We are going to discuss the preparation strategy Devendra Kumar used to follow during his preparation.
Devendra Kumar is a topper of Civil Services Examination 2016 where he secured 97th rank and made his family proud of his achievement by becoming a national topper.
Also read: Everything about UPSC exam from scratch.
What is Anthropology?
Anthropology is the study of humans and human behavior and societies in the past and present. Social anthropology and cultural anthropology study the norms and values of societies. Linguistic anthropology studies how language affects social life. Biological or physical anthropology studies the biological development of humans.
Anthropology is the study of what makes us human. Anthropologists take a broad approach to understanding the many different aspects of the human experience, which we call holism.
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Marks of Devendra Kumar
GS 1: 103
GS 2: 83
GS 3: 124
GS 4: 100
Optional Paper 1: 132
Optional Paper 2: 18
Written Total: 870
Personality Test: 168
Final Total: 1038
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Book List for Anthropology
Social – Cultural Anthropology
- An Introduction to Social Anthropology – D.N Majumdar and T.N. Madan (for basic understating of Anthropology)
- An Introduction to Social Cultural Anthropology – N.K Vaid
- Introducing Sociology – N.C.E.R.T Class 11
- Anthropological Theories (Link)
Principles of Prehistoric archaeology
- “Measuring Time” (Chapter 2) of Indian Prehistory by D.K Bhattacharya
- Wikipedia: Prehistory, Prehistoric Art
- Physical Anthropology – P. Nath
- Biology Class 12th N.C.E.R.T
- K Vaid Printed Notes
- K Vaid Printed Notes.
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Prehistoric Indian Culture
- S Sahay and Pradeep K Singh, Anthropology by Nadeem Hasnain or Ancient India by R.S Sharma (old NCERT) or D.K Bhattacharya or any other source.
- Indian Anthropology – Nadeem Hasnain
- Indian Society – Class 12th N.C.E.R.T
- Social Change and Development in India – Class 12th N.C.E.R.T
- Tribal India – Nadeem Hasnain
- Report of the High-Level Committee on Social-Economic, Health and Educational Status of Tribal Communities in India (Xaxa Committee)
- Tribal and Marginalized Communities – January 2014 edition of Yojana.
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It will be little tricky to write answers in Social-Cultural Anthropology. The main drawback is that everyone’s world-view is limited because we tend to look at these institutions through the prism of that part of the society of which we are part of. It is very important to give definitions by Anthropologists/ Sociologists and to give diverse examples, mention some case studies so that your answer will have a broader idea of the issue.
It is little difficult to complete paper in the exam but you can do anything if you practice, so practice writing answers. Your answer should be in a proper paragraph format which consists of Introduction, Body, and Conclusion.
The format of answer writing for Social-Cultural Anthropology, Biological Anthropology, Indian Society and Tribal India is similar. So, we have divided the strategy into 4 points so that you can read each section in brief.
Social- Cultural Anthropology
- Your answer should start with Introduction including some definitions given by anthropologists according to the question.
- Try to make diagram and flowchart. You can draw various sites across the world for question-related to prehistory, world map etc. You should also tool diagram in your answer.
- If your question is related to Forensic Anthropology you should start your answer with an introduction and write some definitions. You can do the same for Genetic Counselling and Epidemiological Anthropology.
- Try to draw as many diagrams as you can and use technical or relevant terms while writing your answer.
- If possible you should also mention some case studies. You can follow P Nath: it consists of few case studies related to the genetic effect of cousin marriage or consanguineous marriage.
- Introduction to various things which can include definition like that of Caste, Ethno-archaeology, Regionalism etc.
- Whenever a question comes related to traditional patterns then you can draw diagrams of linear, scattered and clustered settlement patterns. And the question of Mesolithic findings you can draw various tools.
- Try to mention case studies, reports, committee recommendations, examples, data, facts, and figures etc. All the mentioned thing is necessary for the questions related to media and social change, social, political and economic status of religious and linguistic minorities.
- Combine the view of sociologists and anthropologists like M.N. Srinivas, S.C. Dube, Rajani Kothari etc. on various issues like religion, caste etc.
- Introduction, among many things, can include data, facts, definitions etc.
- You should draw flowchart and diagrams for questions related to various factors responsible for the exploitation of scheduled caste in India.
- For this section of the syllabus, the most important thing is case studies. Don’t forget to mention case studies.
- The conclusion of the answer should include way ahead, recommendations, the step taken by government etc.
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Strategy for Note Making
You have to cover the whole syllabus in short notes, so try to prepare short notes on each and every topic. You can make notes in any way you are comfortable with like in loose sheets, in notebooks, or marking important things in books etc.
If you will make notes in a simpler way then it will help you in quick revision during your mains exam.
When you are preparing notes try to write definitions, examples, diagrams, case studies, facts, data, reports, views of sociologists/ anthropologists/ political scientists on different topics like caste, religion etc.
You can prepare the notes of Indian Pre-history in 2-3 pages. You can take help from Sahay and Singh.
Also read: The list of books for UPSC CSE Preparation.
- Practice answer writing.
- Use quotes from anthropologists/ sociologists and also use facts & figures, examples, case studies etc.
- Anthropology requires the in-depth study that is why you should choose anthropology as your optional subject if you find it interesting.
We hope that the above article will help you in preparing for anthropology. Wishing you all the very best.
You can also refer to his interview:
Also read: The details of UPSC exam.
If you have any doubt or need guidance you can comment below, our team will try to answer it.
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