Anthropology is formed with the combination of Greek words –anthropo meaning human and logy meaning science. The meaning and purpose of anthropology is the scientific study of humanity.The inherent curiosity of man about himself was the prime reason influencing the emergence of an anthropology which systematic studied mankind.
Anthropology studies who and how man is evolved over the period of time, why he looks like the way and the way he talks and acts in particular manner. It is broad discipline dedicated to the comparative study of mankind, from its first appearance to its present stage of development. It is concerned with all the varieties of human population in every part of the world, both past and present.
Anthropology looks at man both in time and space. Time means the stages of development of man in the process of evolution during different periods of time and space refers to the differentiation of physical and cultural types in modern man living in different environs all over the world.
Anthropology studies the primitive, pre-literate, simple, small societies which are not studied by other disciplines. In anthropology fieldwork or the first hand study of people through personal observations, interview and interaction is very significant. It depends on the direct evidence.
Anthropology is the study of man by man. It is a study which tries to examine in objective way the evidences. People are given importance in anthropological studies as it is concerned with the nature and behavior of each and every group of individuals.
According to Roger Keesing and Felix Keesing anthropology is a study of universalities and uniqueness; a study of startling contrast and surprising similarity; a study of meaning and logic in what seems bizarre.
Anthropology is thus historically and geographically vast in its scope.