This course is designed to introduce students to the ways anthropologists explain the cultures and societies of peoples around the world. To understand the complexities of how anthropologists conduct fieldwork and utilize the research method of participant observation, students are expected to conduct a study of their own, then record and discuss their experiences in a journal.
By examining various aspects of culture which include language, social identity, kinship, marriage, religion, politics, economics, and globalization, students will understand how people transmit ideas, attitudes, and behaviors from one generation to the next. Students will examine these cultural aspects among nine cultural groups around the world and watch seven movies to observe the cultural practices and rituals that highlight these various aspects of culture.
Examining these systems will enable students to gain a cross-cultural perspective as they interact with people from different groups within their communities. This course challenges the dominant images of so-called “Third World” peoples by examining the dynamic relationships that link small-scale cultures with large-scale global processes. This anthropological perspective helps students to understand the importance of the interrelationships between their part of the world and people from other parts of the planet.
Professor T. Karafa