Introduction to Social/Cultural Anthropology x. Lie Fall 2013: MUFF: 1-porn, 155 Donnelley Office Hours: Weds. , 2-pm; 301 Kookier Hall (Tell. : 2-0705) E-mail: [email protected] Du This course introduces anthropological topics in the subfield of social/cultural anthropology, with a particular aim for students to learn a lesson about the idea of culture and its relevance for our global struggles today. For such a goal to be achieved, there is no way for us to avoid a historical perspective on the field, which has changed as the world has changed in time.
What is culture? What is anthropology or anthropological knowledge? What is ethnography or field research? The class will begin with those basic questions and end with a view on the future shape of our cultural knowledge for a fast changing world. No prerequisite is needed. Students must attend three hours per week for lecture, plus one hour per week for discussion section. Required Books (available at the Student Bookstore) Nonentities, The Persian Letters (Try. J. Robert LOL). Meridian (1961). Frazer, J. The Golden Bough. Macmillan (1963 abridged; or Touchstone 1996).
Lionhearted, G. 1961. Divinity and Experience. Collarbone. Douglas, M. 986. How Institutions Think. Syracuse University Press. Miller, D. 2011. Tales from Backbone. Polity. Evaluation: 1) A final paper, 10-12 pages, double space (30%). Note: the paper is due on the 16th of December. 2) Five assignments, which, dependent on the progress of the class, may take the form of a quiz (take-home or in-classroom) or a report (two pages) on the readings and lectures, will count for 10% (50% in total). 3) An in- classroom, open-book test on the last day of class (10%). ) Participation in lectures and section discussions (10%). Note: if you do not show up or rarely in either, you will ail the class, I. E. Not only the ten percent being taken awayвЂ”which is an additional reward for participation. Week 1-2. Introduction: scope and method No assigned reading but you should go to get the books needed for this class. Four general references on the history of anthropology: Sailings, M. 1976. Culture and Practical Reason. Evans-Pritchard, E. E. 1981. A History of Anthropological Thought. Super, A. 1996. Anthropology and Anthropologists.
First Assignment: by the end of Week 2, you should produce a summary of the points made in lectures and investigate below questions: What is anthropology? How is it different from other social science fields? What is anthropological method of study or its methodology? What is ethnography? What are the requirements for doing ethnographic research? How to do it as you understand it should be? Or find a few examples from recent publications in the Kookier Anthropology Library to show how you understand it. More specifically: What is the role of traveling for anthropological studies?
How can one understand the role of experience for such a form of knowledge? Why is it important for anthropologists to learn the language of those whom he or she studies? Etc. , etc. Further but related questions: What is culture? Is it different from such as society or history or tradition? Can you make a list of concepts you have heard from lectures and discuss them with your classmates in your section? Week 3-4. Nonentities, “Persian Letters” Further Reading: Battens, G. 1958. Nave. Stanford. Fortune, R. F. 1932. Sorcerers of Dobb. Dutton.
Second Assignment: How have you read Persian Letters? A classic no doubt but it is also quite different, if not entirely politically incorrect, from our new multicultural sensitivity today. Please take two or three examples from the text and discuss them, in order to show either how they help you understand the historical background of our cultural struggles, such as against Restrictions, or how they have appeared, to our mind today, lack of certain cultural sensitivity? Week 5-7. Frazer, “Golden Bough” Maine, H. 1894. Ancient Law: Its Connection with the Early History London.
Morgan, L. H. 1871. Systems of Consanguinity and Affinity of the Human Family. Nebraska (1997). Third Assignment: What is Freezer’s view of religion, magic and science? How did he deal with the relationship of one to another? How can we understand his general view of the three notions as a whole? For example, is it fair to say that Frazer is an evolutionary thinker in his own way? If you have to tell a friend or someone else how to read the Golden Bough, what would you say? Week 8-9. Lionhearted, “Divinity and Experience” Evans-Pritchard, E. E. 1941. The Inure. Oxford. Or his Inure Religion). Minimalism, B. (1884-1942) Coral Gardens and Their Magic. Provision (2007). Fourth Assignment: Can you review the work by Lionhearted as an example of modern, professional anthropological study? What are the features does this book exemplify, s far as you can summarize it? Do these features fit in the picture we have tried to portray from the beginning of this class as anthropological? Note: please write and comment on the book, and do not simply argue with or refute the author’s view. Week 10. C. LГ©vi-Strauss (1966) The Savage Mind. Chicago.
Note: This weeks reading is optional, and therefore attending the lectures is crucial for your learning. Homework: writing a summary of the lectures on LГ©vi-Strauss, and compare it with your classmates. Week 1 1 . C. Geezer (1973) The Interpretation of Culture. New York. Optional again, see above. Homework: writing a summary of the lectures on Geezer, and compare it with your classmates. Week 12-13. Douglas, “Institutions” Miller, D. 2001. Dialectics of Shopping. Chicago. GaugeГ©, M. 1999. An Anthropology for Contemporaneous Worlds. Stanford. Fifth Assignment: What is theory, scientific or social?
What is anthropological theory? What kind of anthropological theory we need for our own day? By asking such a question have we already shifted our focus to another plain of thinking, which differs from the older convention of anthropology that depended almost entirely on ethnography? Week 14. Anthropology Today: Miller’s Tales Homework: go to the Anthrop. Library and take a look at Anthropological Journals, such as the American Ethnologist or Cultural Anthropology, to figure out what is happening, in terms of research topics, in the field of anthropology today.
Week 15. Summary Open-book test on the last day of our class (check the academic calendar for the accurate date for it). You can bring anything to the classroom, but do not forget your Greenroom for writing. No preparation is needed if you have attended the class regularly and read the assigned readings. Two from the following list: Arabian, P. 987. French Modern (or his French DNA, 1999). Stretcher, M. 1988. The Gender of the Gift. Comfort, J. And J. 1991. Of Revelation and Revolution, Volvo. 1. Scupper-Hughes, N. 1992. Death without Weeping. Sad, T. 1993.