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Programs


Anthropology, the study of humankind, investigates the entire range of the human experience across cultures and over time. Its holistic approach encourages students to explore the relationships among production systems, age and gender roles, family and kinship relations, relations of power and inequality, and religious beliefs in societies throughout the world. Cultural anthropology examines ritual, symbols, cosmological systems, forms of social organization, economics, and politics from a cross-cultural perspective. The department offers major and minor programs in anthropology.

The Anthropology Major
The Anthropology Minor
Course Descriptions


The Anthropology Major
(34 semester hours)

Required:
ANTH 221    (3)    Culture, Society, and the Individual
ANTH 224    (3)    Ethnography
ANTH 328    (3)    Ritual and Worldview

Senior Exercises:
ANTH 451    (1)    Senior Workshop in Anthropology and Archaeology
ANTH 452    (3)    Senior Seminar

Choose 1 of the following courses:
ANTH 215    (3)    Peoples and Cultures of Africa
ANTH 268    (3)    Peoples and Cultures of the Mediterranean
ANTH 270    (3)    Peoples and Cultures of South Asia
ANTH 272    (3)    Peoples and Cultures of the Middle East

Choose 1 of the following courses:
ANTH 322    (3)    Food, Culture, and the Environment
ANTH 334    (3)    Gifts and Commodities

And choose 5 additional three-credit courses in anthropology excluding internships. No more than one directed, special, or independent study may be counted toward the major. Students may apply one archaeology course, excluding ARCH 115, to the major in anthropology.

NOTES: Students choosing to declare majors in both anthropology and archaeology may use ANTH 452 for only one of the majors. The senior exercise for the other major may be an independent study approved by the  advisor.

At least four courses (including ANTH 328, ANTH 451, and ANTH 452) must be advanced courses numbered at the 300-level or above.

With the exception of ANTH 451, no course used to fulfill major requirements may be taken on a P/CR/NC grading option. Additional information about the P/CR/NC grading option is available under the Academic Regulations heading of the catalog.

 

The Anthropology Minor
(18 semester hours)

Choose 6 three-credit courses in anthropology excluding internships. At least two three-credit courses must be at or above the 300-level.

NOTE: No more than one directed, special, or independent study may be counted toward the minor. Neither ANTH 451 nor ANTH 452 may be counted toward the minor.

 


Course Descriptions

 

ANTH 112

Cultural Anthropology
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisite: Not open to seniors. (ANTH 112H is open to seniors). A broad, general introduction to selected concepts and topics in cultural anthropology through ethnographic accounts of societies from different world regions. Questions about differing social practices and cultural values will be explored, along with questions about how anthropologists examine the objects of their studies and critical examination of analytical concepts such as culture, tradition, ritual, and kinship. The course is designed primarily for first- and second-year students. V.4

ANTH 114

Introduction to Archaeology
CR: 
3.0

An introduction to the theory and methods of anthropological archaeology and a survey of some of the prehistoric societies in different parts of the world. III.Q, V.1

ANTH 215

Peoples and Cultures of Africa
CR: 
3.0

An exploration of anthropological approaches to Africa, focusing on selected societies. The course examines the dynamism of African cultures and their engagement with the world system in various domains. Among possible topics in the course are engagements with colonialism and globalization, art and aesthetics, social organization, ideas of the state, health and healing, religion and worldview, personhood and sentiments, and gendered experiences. V.4

ANTH 221

Culture, Society, and the Individual
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisite: Not open to first-year students. An introduction to the theoretical foundations of anthropology. We examine the emergence of specific problematics in anthropology: What is the relationship of the individual to society? To culture? What are the implications of talking about society as structured? About cultures as different? How do we account for change and diversity? The course introduces these questions through the examination of theoretical sources and supplemented by some ethnographic studies. V.5

ANTH 224

Ethnography
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisite: ANTH 112 or one 200-level ANTH course. A critical evaluation of the ways anthropologists study Western and non-Western cultures and the ways anthropologists shape coherent narratives. A practical introduction to fieldwork techniques, ethnographic methods, ethical dilemmas, and the conventions of anthropological writing. III.W, V.5

ANTH 233

Cultural Perspectives on the Family and Society
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisite: ANTH 112 or one 200-level ANTH course; instructor permission may be given to students who have taken upper-level social science courses. An examination of the ideas associated with the family in anthropology and in different societies, of relationships within the family and between families and larger society, and of how such relationships are inventively lived in different cultures in historical and contemporary times. Among other topics, the course may examine ideas of motherhood and fatherhood; descent and relationship; intra- and international adoptions; new reproductive technologies; and the ideas associated with the family in national, business, religious, and other community discourses. Offered alternate years. V.5

ANTH 238

The Anthropology of Globalization
CR: 
3.0

This course takes a critical look at globalization, both as an idea about the current moment, and how people respond to and create contemporary changes. We will pay particular attention to global markets and the flow of people, goods and ideas; neoliberalism and the rise of nonstate global agencies; the work of the imagination; the apparent contrast between “the global” and local knowledge; and the place of the intimate in world-wide change. V.4, V.7

ANTH 241

Gender and Society
CR: 
3.0

What is gender, as a natural or social phenomenon? How do gendered practices shape social relations? Are gender differences always linked to notions of sexuality and sexual practice? Is hierarchy always established by the dominance of one gender over another? In this course we investigate primate models of gendered behavior, and the history of the early human family from evolutionary and social perspectives. The role of heterosexuality, bisexuality, and homosexuality in human society are examined from archaeological sources as well as in contemporary ethnographic case studies. May be counted toward the major in archaeology and as an auxiliary course toward the minor in gender studies. Offered alternate years. III.W, V.5

ANTH 261

Directed Study
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisites: One ANTH course and permission of the instructor. The study of introductory level material by an individual student or by a small group of students under the immediate supervision of a faculty member.

ANTH 268

Peoples and Cultures of the Mediterranean
CR: 
3.0

An area survey of selected Mediterranean societies, including the comparative analysis of selected European, Middle Eastern, and North African cultures. An examination of the central concepts in the social anthropology of this region: honor and shame, the roles of family and kinship, and systems of stratification. Offered alternate years. V.5

ANTH 272

Peoples and Cultures of the Middle East
CR: 
3.0

An exploration of various anthropological perspectives on selected Middle Eastern societies. Among topics that may be covered are gender, family and society, religion and secularism, transformations of class, media and society, age and the lifecourse, and Middle Eastern modernities. Offered every two years. V.4, V.5

ANTH 281

Visual Anthropology
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisite: ANTH 112, ENGL 149, or ENGL 150. This course explores images of the cultural other, as seen in ethnographic and documentary films and photographs. How do photographs, art, exhibits, and museums reinforce stereotypes of “the primitive” and “the exotic?” In what ways are visual media used to create ethnographic texts and representations? The course will address these topics through film screenings, discussions, and readings as well as video production. V.5

ANTH 282

Anthropology and the Body
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisite: ANTH 112 or one 200-level ANTH course. A detailed exploration of the body as a cultural construct and as a field of practices. The course will examine how the body is imagined through a variety of discourses, including disease, illness and healing; ritual; aesthetics; age and gender; modification and training; and as part of the political domain. V.5

ANTH 322

Food, Culture, and the Environment
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisite: A 100- or 200-level course in ANTH or ARCH, or ENVR 101. This course covers the origins of food production and changing foodways over time and across geographical regions. The place of food in human prehistory and history, ritual and family life, and in the global economy will be examined. The course will investigate issues such as food shortages, hunger and famine, and food security in the contemporary world; the implications of food biotechnology and GMOs; and food movements such as slow food, organic, and local foods. May be counted toward the major in archaeology. Offered alternate years. V.4

ANTH 325

Special Topics in Anthropology
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisites: Two ANTH courses, at least one of which is at the 200-level or above. An intensive study of a selected topic in anthropology, to be determined by the students and the instructor.

ANTH 328

Ritual and Worldview
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisites: Two ANTH courses, at least one of which is at the 200-level or above. A study of how ritual and religious symbolism define cultural categories and individual experiences. The course will focus on initiation and death ritual, taboo, witchcraft and other idioms of affliction, and some of the theories anthropologists have used to interpret religious behavior and ideas. V.4, V.5

ANTH 334

Gifts and Commodities: The Construction of Value in Social Life
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisites: Two ANTH courses, at least one of which is at the 200-level or above. How do objects, such as gifts, money, commodities, art and aesthetic products, become “valued?” How do exchanges of valued objects shape relationships among people? The place of value and exchange in everyday life is examined through classic statements (for example by Marx, Mauss, and Simmel), and also in selected ethnographies. Offered alternate years. III.O

ANTH 338

Memory, Commemoration, and Heritage
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisites: Two 200-level courses in ANTH or ARCH. This course takes up the question of how and what societies remember. We examine the social contexts of memory and the practices through which memory is channeled in the past and in the present. We look at the material constructions designed to commemorate events, people, and the past generally, including burials, memorials, rituals, and re-enactments and recreations. We explore the ways in which people recently have sought to transform the past into "heritage," asking both why and how heritage becomes such a concern today. May be counted toward the major in archaeology. Offered alternate years. V.5

ANTH 361

Special Study
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisites: Three ANTH courses, at least one of which is at the 200-level or above, and permission of the instructor. The study of an intermediate level topic by an individual student or by a small group of students under the immediate supervision of a faculty member.

ANTH 377

Internship
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisites: Three credits in ANTH and permission of instructor and department chair. This course is graded P/CR/NC only.

ANTH 451

Senior Workshop in Anthropology and Archaeology
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisites: Open to ANTH and ARCH majors. A fall term workshop for students planning to take ANTH 452 in the spring term. In the course we will plan the senior seminar, and plan research projects for the spring, including assembling bibliographies, and research materials, and developing research proposals for review by the department. We also discuss career planning and how the anthropology and archaeology majors have prepared students for a variety of post-graduation paths. This course is taken on a P/CR/NC grading option only.

ANTH 452

Senior Seminar
CR: 
3.0

Prerequisite: ANTH 451. An examination of core concepts and analytical methods in anthropology through focused discussion of contemporary scholarship and through student senior research projects. III.O, III.W