Skip to main content

Spring 2021 Class Schedule


Course Title Instructor Day/Time Location
ANTHRO 101-6-21 First Year Seminar:  Perspectives on Primates  Katie Amato TTh 9:30 - 10:50AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 101-6-22 First Year Seminar:  Mobile Papers: Passports, Visas, Cash in the Global Order of Mobility Emrah Yildiz W 3-5:50PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 101-0-23 First Year Seminar:  How the Other 99% Live: Inequalities in American Cities Micaela di Leonardo  T 5-7:50PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 101-0-24 First Year Seminar:  Writing the Pandemic College Experience 

Elizabeth Smith

TTh 2-3:20PM  Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 211-0-01 Culture & Society Diego Arispe_Bazan TTh  11-12:20PM Lecture sections will be recorded live, but are optional (asynchronous).
ANTHRO 211-0-61 Discussion Section Jacob Aronoff  T  8:30-9:20AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 211-0-62 Discussion Section Emily Schwalbe M  9-9:50AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 211-0-63 Discussion Section Emily Schwalbe W  9-9:50AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 211-0-64 Discussion Section Jacob Aronoff  Th  8:30-9:20AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 211-0-65 Discussion Section Aaron Schoenfeldt F  10-10:50AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 211-0-66 Discussion Section Aaron Schoenfeldt F  9-9:50AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 290-0-21 Topics in Anthropology: Japanese Culture and Society Hiro Miyazaki TTh 12:30-1:50PM  Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 290-0-22 Topics in Anthropology: Beyond the Binary:  Transgender & Race (also GNDR_ST 235-0-20) Ray Noll MW 12:30-1:50PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 290-0-23 Topics in Anthropology: Islam, Gender, and Minorities in Turkey and the Middle East (also MENA 290-3-20) Deniz Duruiz MW 5-6:20PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 307-0-20 Anthropology of Peace Hiro Miyazaki TTh 2-3:20PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 309-0-01 Human Osteology  Erin Waxenbaum F 10-12PM

Face-to-face: Class meets in person, in a campus space

1810 Hinman 104

ANTHRO 309-0-02 Human Osteology Erin Waxenbaum F 1-3PM

Face-to-face: Class meets in person, in a campus space

1810 Hinman 104

ANTHRO 316-0-20 Forensic Anthropology Erin Waxenbaum MW 9:30-10:50AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 327-0-20 Historical Archaeology  Mark Hauser MW  12:30-1:50PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 343-0-20

Anthropology of Race


Mark Hauser MW 9:30-10:50AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 373-0-20 Power and Culture in American Cities Micaela di Leonardo Th 5-7:50PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 383-0-20 Environmental Anthropology (also ENVR_POL 390-0-20) Melissa Rosenzweig  TTh 9:30-10:50AM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 390-0-21 Evolutionary Medicine Christopher Kuzawa TTh 12:30-1:50PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 390-0-23 Race Across Time in Latin America(also SPAN 397-0-3 / LATIN AM 391-0-21)

Diego Arispe-Bazan

MW 12:30-1:50PM  Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 390-0-25 Topics in Anthropology: Porous Borders? Geography, Power and Techniques of Movement (MENA 390-3-20)

Emrah Yildiz

TTh 5-6:20PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 390-0-26 Topics in Anthropology: Jews and Muslims in Contemporary Spain (also SPAN 397/JS 390)

Charles McDonald

MW 2-3:20PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 390-0-27 Topics in Anthropology: Fire and Blood: Political Ecologies of the Environment, Energy, and Life (also HUM 370-3-20 / ENVR_POL 390-0- )

Zeynep Oguz

MW 3:30-4:50PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 390-0-28 Topics in Anthropology: Becoming Planetary: Earth, Power, Imagination! (also HUM 370-3-30 / ENVR_POL 390-0 / SHC) Zeynep Oguz TTh 3:30-4:50PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 490-0-21 Topics in Anthropology: Household Archaeology & Everyday Life Cynthia Rivera Th 1-3:30PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 490-0-24 Topics in Anthropology:  Ethnographic Writing  Adia Benton  T 2-4:50PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time
ANTHRO 496-0-20 Bridging Seminar

Mary Weismantel

Amanda Logan

M 3-5PM Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time

Spring quarter 2021 course descriptions

ANTHRO 101-6-21            First Year Seminar:  Perspectives on Primates

In the movies, lemurs dance, capuchins slap people in the face, and apes take over the world. We have a fascination with non-human primates due the many similarities we share. Beyond being constantly faced with images of our closest living relatives, however, our lives are substantially influenced by our similarities with other primates and how they are interpreted. Whether or not we think of humans as 'just another primate' or as completely unique among the primates can shape our conception of ourselves and our societies. It can also shape our attitudes toward primate research, conservation, and beyond. In this course we will explore perspectives on human-primate similarities and how they influence our understanding of human aggression, xenophobia, gender roles, sexual behavior, and more. Using writing and discussion, we will also explore how unique humans really are compared to other primates. At the end of this course, you will have an appreciation for primate diversity and the complex history of primate research. You will be able to describe how different humans really are from other primates, and you will be able to pinpoint how primate research and perspectives on primates influence your daily life. Most importantly, you will be able to explain how science has broad social ramifications. 

ANTHRO 101-6-22            First Year Seminar:  Mobile Papers: Passports, Visas, Cash in the Global Order of Mobility

This course title refers to the papers upon which the global order of mobility rests in our contemporary era. It approaches these papers as good tools to think with in order to study the disturbing intensification of global inequality in diverse populations’ access to transnational mobility over the past few decades. In this seminar, students will read about, discuss, write about, and thus gain the intellectual tools to begin to evaluate, these past and present inequalities that make up our global order of mobility. These inequalities, materialized in paper form, allow people to move across multiple borders, and so doing, underpin our current global order of differential mobility: a mobility that is distributed unevenly, taken for granted for the select few, while being denied to the vast majority of others—around the world.

We will read across several different academic disciplines and investigative journalism to become familiar with key analytic concepts, methods, and historical phenomena, such as citizenship-for-investment schemes, the US Green Card lottery, US-Mexico borderlands, nationalism, migration, ethnography, and political economy. Our goal in the seminar is to critically assess how seemingly mundane papers make or break the possibilities of movement across modern state borders, differentiated at the intersection of nationality, race, class, gender, and/or geography.

ANTHRO 101-6-22   First Year Seminar:  How the Other 99% Live: Inequalities in American Cities

This course title refers both to the famous 1889 Jacob Riis photo-documentary on poverty in New York City, How the Other Half Lives, and to the slogans of the Occupy Wall Street protests of 2011.  It does so to highlight the disturbing return, over the past few decades, of the extreme levels of economic inequality—heavily but not entirely connected to racial/immigrant/gender status--that were characteristic of the late 19th and early 20th centuries in America. And the indices have worsened significantly since I last taught this class a year ago. Of course, we are now recovering from a global pandemic that has also badly affected the economies of all nations.

 In this seminar, students will read about, discuss, write about, and thus gain the intellectual tools to begin to evaluate past and present American urban inequalities—including not only those of class, but also race/ethnicity, gender & sexuality, nationality. We will read across several different academic disciplines and journalism to become familiar with key analytic concepts, methods, and historical phenomena, such as the Great Compression, the War on Poverty, urban regimes, ethnography, political economy. Using them, we will explore arenas of inequality: employment; urban space, housing, migration, and neighborhoods; schooling, criminal justice, the public sphere. You will watch two short, relevant videos on your own before the first seminar meeting. And we will, of course, be discussing the effects of the pandemic on working-class and impoverished American residents.

ANTHRO 101-0-24            First Year Seminar:  Writing the Pandemic College Experience

How do cultural anthropologists write about people and places? How can we understand community building at Northwestern University when pandemic has turned the world upside-down and transformed basic social practices?  To find out, you will study and practice anthropology’s most famous method of research and writing, ethnography.  Conducting participant-observation research, keeping a weekly field journal, interviewing others about their experiences, and analyzing visual and other expressive materials will empower you to 1. make sense of what’s going on around you in the current moment, 2. turn an analytical eye toward Northwestern, and 3. critically develop your new role as a college student.  As a class, we will pay attention to how social and economic power structures such as race, gender, sexuality, and economic inequality shape people’s understandings of themselves and their communities.  Materials include one text for purchase ($22 new), as well as book chapters, articles, and films/visuals accessible free online. Requirements include participation in synchronous class discussion, a weekly journal, one short essay, and a final in-class presentation on an aspect of college life that you research throughout the quarter. 

ANTHRO 211-0-01            Culture & Society

Often, anthropology is talked about as the study of human culture, where it originates, how it is transmitted, how it changes. But what is “culture”? Rather than a universal, one-size-fits-all answer, anthropologists today seek to understand how ideas and actions interact within specific social contexts. Through a focus on ethnography, the fundamental method of our field, students will learn how to conduct research into the processes that shape the social world, emphasizing human agency in relation to sociohistorical, economic, political, and environmental forces. A key feature will be to denaturalize notions such as “common sense,” reinterpreting what we might know from our own contexts, as a starting point to understand others. Students will have the opportunity to practice anthropological research through multiple possible modalities, both face-to-face and online.                                                                       
ANTHRO 290-0-21            Topics in Anthropology: Japanese Culture and Society

This course offers an anthropological introduction to Japanese society and culture through a critical investigation of a wide range of films, from Yusujiro Ozu’s classic films to Hayao Miyazaki’s animated films and various documentary films contemporary Japan. Topics of investigation include war and peace, kinship and marriage, education, work and workplaces, gender and sexuality, nationalism and nostalgia, ethnic minorities, aging society, and techno-scientific utopia and dystopia.

ANTHRO 290-0-22            Topics in Anthropology: Beyond the Binary:  Transgender & Race

This course is a 200-level, introductory course that explores racial formation and the boundaries and binaries of gender. This course will overview approaches to understanding gender norms and categories, as well as consider experiences, living, and contestations beyond these binaries. Particularly through reading trans*, genderqueer, and gender nonconforming histories, identities, experiences, and politics, this class will consider the possibilities and problems of categorizing “the beyond.” We will discuss shifting conceptualizations of “normal” gender, and what is assumed to defy this “normal” as embedded in the intersecting histories and legacies of race, class, sexuality, nationality, and ability. For instance, what is the relationship between race and gender that specifically shapes and forms the boundaries of gender in the US - both historically and in the contemporary moment? What is the enduring role and stakes of scholarship and discourses in the social sciences, such as anthropology, that seeks to frame the boundaries of gender? How does power in social, cultural, and political arenas impact these discourses? This course aims to recognize and understand these contested histories of gender through the lens of our current moment, and we will consider the potential and limits of visibility, representation, and inclusion that trans* activism and liberation, particularly from the legacies of trans* of color communities, has continued to challenge within coercive gender systems.

 ANTHRO 290-0-23            Topics in Anthropology: Islam, Gender, and Minorities in Turkey and the Middle East

In the Western media, Turkey has been represented with the essentialist images and stereotypes of an exotic culture (harem, belly dancing, oil wrestling), an unstable political regime threatened by the remnants of the past (Islamism, ignorance, darkness), and the supposed oppression of women (hijab, honor killings) frequently used to describe Middle Eastern countries. Yet it has also been portrayed as a Europeanized outlier (a badge of honor claimed by most Middle Eastern countries), “a bridge between East and West” (a cliché also adopted by Eastern European countries, Russia, Iran, Singapore, and the Philippines), an exemplar of moderate Islam and multi-cultural tolerance, and once even an inspiration for the phrase “Turkish model of democracy”. We will begin this class by exploring why these seemingly contrasting depictions of Turkey are in fact the two sides of the same coin, and how they conceal the colonial and national histories, political dynamics, and global economic inequalities. Drawing on ethnography, social history, and film, we will do comparative readings of the historical and contemporary regimes, events, and social movements in Turkey and the Middle East. Taking Turkey’s “exceptional” status as a vantage point, we will explore the pressing political issues of the MENA region such as gender inequalities, the question of minorities, the effects of war, relationships with Europe as well as ideologies like feminism, nationalism, and political Islam. The aim of the course is to provide the students with an intellectual background and perspective so that they can situate their knowledge of Turkey in the broader in the Middle East and build informed opinions about the future of this region.

ANTHRO 307-0-20            Anthropology of Peace

What is peace? Peace often sounds either too abstract or too naïve in a world filled with inequality, injustice, and violence. And yet, peace continues to serve as a framework for many forms of global engagement, from international activities at elementary schools to humanitarian action and high-level diplomatic negotiations. The anthropology of peace takes seriously all these levels of aspiration for peace and seeks to identify divergent loci of peace and peace-building in today’s complex world.

The course offers a broad survey of anthropological approaches to peace, including ethnographic studies of “peaceful societies,” cultural mechanisms for dispute and conflict resolution, compensation, truth and reconciliation commissions, the relationship between peace and commerce, and the role of literature, art and material culture in peace activism. In this survey, we will be introduced to a variety of concrete efforts to foster peace and peaceful relationships. The course will also include two special events featuring examples of global peace activism.

ANTHRO 309-0-01         Human Osteology                                                                                                                                               & ANTHRO 309-0-02       

Knowledge of human osteology forms the basis of physical and forensic anthropology, bio-archaeology, paleoanthropology and clinical anatomy. This course will provide an intensive introduction to the human skeleton; particularly the identification of complete and fragmentary skeletal remains. Through this course, you will be exposed to techniques for identification and classification of human skeletal anatomy through hands-on, dry laboratory sessions. Additional time outside of class is available and may be required to review practical materials.

ANTHRO 316-0-20            Forensic Anthropology

This course provides a broad overview of forensic anthropology - an applied sub-field of biological anthropology. Forensic anthropology focuses traditional skeletal biology on problems of medicolegal significance, primarily in determining personal identity and assisting in the cause of death assessment from human remains. In this course we will discuss the full range of issues associated with human skeletal identification from trauma analysis to the identification of individuals in mass disasters. These problems will serve as a model for understanding the broader aspects of applied anthropology.

ANTHRO 327-0-20            Historical Archaeology

Historical Archaeology," is a field archaeology that focuses on the past 500 years and addresses a myriad of questions including, identity, European colonialism, resistance, capitalism, and power. This course will explore the history of different peoples in the Americas through the study of the material remains they left behind: architecture, burials, food remains, clothing and jewelry, etc. Attention will be focused on the presentation and/or exclusion of groups in depictions of history and in the creation new identities (ethnogenesis) in different parts of the Americas. It will also consider the ways in which power and economy intersect with other forms of identity, such as class, gender, and sexuality. The course will survey a variety of communities, concentrating on Indigenous Peoples, as well as people of European, African and Asian descent in American contexts. While there will be course material which touch on French and Iberian colonial contexts, class projects will primarily draw on study of artifacts and communities in the Eastern United States and the Anglophone Caribbean.

ANTHRO 343-0-20            Anthropology of Race

This course offers a critical approach to the analysis of race through each of anthropology's four fields. Biological Anthropology, Linguistic Anthropology, Archaeology, and Cultural Anthropology.  As such it highlights the strength of pursuing topics anthropologically and insists on the role of inter-disciplinary analysis of institutions such as race. Race, Racialization and Racism have played a central role in the history, development and practice of Anthropology since the mid-nineteenth century. By critically examining the discipline's history and current practices students will be provided with insights for the analysis of race, identity and inequality. This course enables students to develop a social and historical context for race, racism and anti- racism, and a framework for its analysis.  Second this course will be especially helpful for majors, minors and non-majors to develop a familiarity and critical reading of several key texts in the anthropological study of race.

ANTHRO 373-0-20            Power and Culture in American Cities

This course provides an entrée into the fraught and shifting politics and cultures of American urban life. Our special foci will be urban political economy, ethnographic knowledge, urban space and neighborhoods, recent demographic, political, and economic trends—especially the verifiable facts concerning widening class inequalities, race and racism, immigration and xenophobia, gender and misogyny, and LBGTQ populations and homophobia--and on the shifting American public sphere. With this ethnographic, social scientific, and historical grounding, to which I will add with focused lectures, we will have intensive, seminar-style discussions. Midterm and final will be take-home, "think" exercises. Prerequisite: Anthropology 211 or other cultural/social anthropology courses, or another introductory course in sociology or American history.

ANTHRO 383-0-20            Environmental Anthropology

Environmental anthropology is a more recent outgrowth of ecological anthropology, which emerged in the 1960s and 70s as an empirically-based focus on systemic human-environment relationships, especially as they pertain to patterns of social change and adaptation.  Environmental anthropology became more prominent in the 1980s and is typically characterized by research on communities’ engagements with contemporary environmental issues.  Environmental anthropology has greater commitments to advocacy, critique, and application than ecological anthropology, but as we’ll see in this course, the proliferation of “new ecologies” (as opposed to “new environmentalisms”) denotes the continued synergy between ecological and environmental anthropologies.

This course is divided into two parts.  Part I will provide an historical overview of the development of environmental anthropology.  We will cover some of the most influential research trends in the field: environmental determinism, cultural ecology, systems ecology, ethnoecology, historical ecology, political ecology, and post-humanist ecology.  Part II will then pivot to the application of environmental anthropology knowledge to some of the most pressing environmental issues facing the contemporary world: population pressure, capitalist consumption patterns, biodiversity conservation, sustainable agriculture, climate change, and environmental justice. 

ANTHRO 390-0-21            Topics in Anthropology: Evolutionary Medicine

Many diseases of contemporary society, including ailments like obesity, diabetes, and depression, have only emerged as major health issues in recent human history. In addition, different human groups or ethnicities vary markedly in the burden of these conditions, with factors like poverty, inequality and discrimination consistently predicting who is most affected. What might account for these common findings?  In this course we explore two related ideas to gain insights into these issues. The first is that many modern ailments may be viewed as an imbalance between modern life ways and those which shaped our biology during much of human evolution. The second is that differences in factors like inequality and discrimination, which trace to political, economic, and historical factors, help explain why some groups tend to be more affected by these imbalances than others. We will begin by reviewing foundational concepts in evolutionary biology, molecular biology, anthropology, and human evolution, revealing why our bodies by necessity come equipped with biology that is responsive to the environments that we inhabit. We will then use these principles to explore case studies that illustrate the power of evolutionary principles to shed light on why we get sick, including the role of social, economic, and political factors as drivers of major disparities in disease burden.

ANTHRO 390-0-22            Topics in Anthropology: Race Across Time in Latin America

This seminar will track both the shifts and continuities in racial ideologies operating in Latin America since the colonial period, following the work of historians and anthropologists. The course will consider impact of these ideologies on subject formation by reviewing their progression over time through theoretical arguments and evidence from case studies. Because race has been central to the forms of power and authority that first undergirded the colonial system and later birthed the many Latin American nations, we can trace a continued line of transmission of racialized ideologies that structure inequality in the region. Using a cultural and linguistic anthropological framework, we will approach these racial categories as composites of markers of otherness that include skin color, clothing, kin affiliations, occupation, among others. The course moves progressively from research about the early colonial period and forward chronologically until the 20th century, with a final discussion of migrant trajectories to the US. Topics covered will include variations in how race is defined and invoked in context, identity as a performative effect, coloniality as an ongoing process, and the role of historical memory in post-colonial Latin America.

ANTHRO 390-0-25            Topics in Anthropology: Porous Borders? Geography, Power and Techniques of                                                                        Movement

At the advent of increased globalization some scholars have argued that the movements of capital, commodities and people across nation-states have rendered their borders increasingly more porous. The death of the nation-state was announced elsewhere. Yet, in the epoch of offshored refugee processing centers and border walls, this assumed porosity of borders begs a reexamination of broader geographies of power and tactics of movement. In this course, we examine the historically and geographically specific constellations of borders and ask: How does the border become an architecture of regulation that extends access to mobility to some and denies it to others? what is a border? Is it the physical line drawn between two states? Who gets to draw these lines? Is a state border a given result of a natural and ethnic contract or the terrain of constant contestation or negotiation in global and international affairs? This course examines these questions by proposing to reconceptualize border as equally the product of mobile social actors, contraband commodities, and fluctuating values as they are of state policies aimed at managing these movements. By the end of the course students will be well-versed in diverse theories of space and informed to articulate what an attention to space and the relations of power inscribed in particular processes of territorial production can contribute to ethnographic and historical inquiry.

ANTHRO 390-0-26            Topics in Anthropology: Jews and Muslims in Contemporary Spain

This undergraduate seminar examines the shifting place of Jews and Muslims in contemporary Spain. Together, we will explore several interrelated questions: (1) How have “Spain” and “Europe” variously been defined as modern, white, Christian, or secular by figuring Jews and Muslims as others? (2) How have these terms and the forms of life and history that they purport to represent changed over time? (3) What are the similarities and differences between the “Jewish Question” and the “Muslim Problem”? (4) How do Jews and Muslims understand themselves in relation to Spain, Europe, and to each other? At a time when racism, antisemitism, Islamophobia, and right-wing populist movements are ascendant in Spain and across Europe, we will work collaboratively to not only answer these questions, but to formulate new ones. To do so, we will consult scholarship in anthropology, history, cultural theory, and philosophy as well as on fiction, film, and journalism as resources. Throughout the term, we will be especially attuned to the forms of inclusion and exclusion that have affected Jews and Muslims in Spain, always with an eye toward how such abstractions come to matter in everyday life.

ANTHRO 390-0-27            Topics in Anthropology:  Fire and Blood: Political Ecologies of the Environment, Energy,                                                      and Life

What kinds of tools would help us understand urgent global issues we are facing today, ranging from global pandemics and climate emergency, wildfires in California and Australia, hurricanes in Puerto Rico and Louisiana, occupational diseases in South Dakota and Toronto, or urban infrastructure crises in Mumbai and Senegal? Over the past three decades, political ecology has emerged as a powerful interdisciplinary tool for understanding and critiquing global ecological change. Political ecology seeks to unravel the political forces at work in environmental processes on a global scale. It is a powerful strategy for reinserting politics into apolitical or “greenwashed” discussions of ecology and the environment and unsettling common-sense understandings of “the environment” or “nature” as separate from the social and the cultural. It is also an essential tool to understand how disparate-seeming places, events, and living entities in the world are intimately linked to each other in often uneven ways. In this course, we will critically approach topics such as resource extraction, conservation, carbon management, natural disasters, sanitation politics, and human-animal-plant relations. In doing so, we will explore the gendered and racialized ways and the ongoing histories of slavery, colonialism, imperialism, and capitalism through which environmental and energy politics operate in our societies today.

ANTHRO 390-0-28            Topics in Anthropology: Becoming Planetary: Earth, Power, Imagination!

“Planetary” has increasingly come to capture the imagination and apprehension of people around the world. It has also been receiving special attention in the critical social sciences and humanities as a concept that captures the relationship between social life and the Earth. Our planet is going through massive changes in its climate and ecosystems. At the same time, humans have become a major force that has been shaping the dynamics of the planet. Taking this interdependence between social life/humans and the planet, this course explores the ways in which social sciences and the humanities are responding to the entanglement of humanity and our planet. Understanding our planet as the product of a dynamic planet, self-organizing over deep time, we will explore how social and political processes —fire use, mining, disease, slavery, colonialism, extraction, trade, and extinction— have powerfully shaped and have been shaped by inhuman planetary formations. One main task of the course will be to understand how racialized and economic inequalities have made their mark on Earth through the reorganization of planetary processes.

 ANTHRO 490-0-21            Topics in Anthropology: Household Archaeology & Everyday Life

In a few short decades, the field of household archaeology has emerged and exploded within contemporary archaeology. On an empirical level this may be because archaeological remains of houses are ubiquitous in the archaeological record. On a theoretical level this may be because studies of households lead us to focus on peopled pasts. Thus, despite its short history, household archaeology has taken a leading role in epistemological shifts which place people and their practices and differences at the center of archaeological interpretations of the past, rather than subsuming these into the "noise" of passive and depersonalized depictions of social systems. Our studies of household archaeology across this course will lead us to consider the importance of studying everyday life in the past. A study of everyday life in the past can lead to a more democratic understanding of societies inclusive of the full range of people that inhabited past societies. Studies of households and everyday life are not without their detractors and these detractors are often quite hostile. Because households and daily life are often considered "micro" domains where people interact with one another, they are not considered suitable areas of studies to answer "macro" questions of politics and society. In this class we will explore how "micro" and "macro" intersect in the analysis households and daily life making these vibrant domains to understand how micro (self, interaction, experience) and macro (institutions, power relations, society) merge as they shape and are shaped by people and societies. This class is designed to be a forum for collaborative discussion on central issues and ethical considerations in contemporary archaeology. Participants will be encouraged to apply household and everyday life studies in their own research.

ANTHRO 490-0-22            Topics in Anthropology:  Ethnographic Writing

This an intensive writing workshop, focusing on ethnography as a particular genre of scholarly writing that weaves together the theoretical and experiential, description and abstraction. We will read and discuss examples of ethnographic writing as a way of prompting and facilitating our own writing practice; perform in-class writing exercises to develop evocative descriptions, meaningful analyses, and deep engagement with our data and the scholarly literature; and workshop short excerpts in ‘table readings’ of works-in-progress. The course is for graduate students who have collected substantial ethnographic data (e.g. field notes, archives/primary sources, interviews/oral histories) and plan to write those data up in the form of book chapter, journal article, dissertation, or other longform medium.

ANTHRO 496-0-20            Bridging Seminar

The bridging seminar is designed as a forum to generate conversation across anthropology's four subfields. Intended for first year anthropology PhD students, the bridging seminar covers material across the subfields that relates to a specific theme or set of themes that rotates every year. Students are expected to complete readings, attend department colloquium talks, and be an active discussant. This year, we will focus on a mix of external speakers and readings on the hottest topics in linguistic, sociocultural, biological, and archaeological anthropology, including the impact of COVID-19 on anthropological research. Readings will be articles that will be made available as pdfs.


Back to top