Introduction to cultural anthropology, using fieldwork-based concepts and methods to study diverse cultural views and practices, varied forms of social organization, and contemporary global issues.
Open to degree and PACE students
Culture can take many forms; the anthropological study of culture brings in a variety of approaches and methods to explore the deepest and most relevant aspects of cultural phenomena. This course is as an introduction to the basic anthropological concepts, methods, and issues one might encounter in the study of culture. Students will be exposed to the diversity of viewpoints and cultural experiences of peoples living across the world, to fathom how humans have sustained life over thousands of years. Far from being only an academic endeavor, students will learn the ways in which the practice and findings of anthropology can influence and enhance their personal lives and their own worldviews.
Anthropology is the study of mankind, and therefore it deals with topics that students may already know from just being human persons. In this course, students should be aiming to: • Remember things are rarely as simple as they look. • Understand the anthropological approach, by identifying the history of each individual topic, and recognizing the complex variety of human experience, which goes far beyond any individual’s history. • Apply the thinking of anthropologists to sketch out everyday life situations, whether they occur in the news or a thousand years ago, here on campus or abroad. • Analyze any given context to question the interrelationships between each subject, and distinguish how they may or may not compare with others. • Evaluate claims of objectivity, and weigh them against available experience. • Create a work of anthropological relevance, in which students will assemble concepts learned in class, investigate them holistically, develop a picture of its meaning and formulate their own interpretation.
Weekly quizzes and final essay
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Note: These dates may not be accurate for select courses during the Summer Session.
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