Department of Anthropology

ANT 301 • Bio/Phys Anthropology

30890-30950 • Kirk, Chris
Meets MW 1100am-1200pm JES A121A
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 This course is an introduction to the principles and the methods of physical anthropology.  Physical anthropology is the study of human beings in a biological context, and seeks to explain our relationship to other primates and to the rest of the natural world.  In other words, who are we? how are we unique? how, why, an when did we come to be the way we are?The study of physical anthropology requires many different types of knowledge.  Throughout the course, we will examine anatomical, behavioral, and genetic similarities and differences among living primates, learn the basic mechanisms of the evolutionary process, and trace a pathway of human evolution as reconstructed from the fossil record.  The main goal of the course is to obtain a clear understanding of our place in nature.


ANT 301 • Bio/Phys Anthropology-Wb

30955 • Kappelman Jr, John W.
Meets
show description

 This course is an introduction to the principles and the methods of physical anthropology.  Physical anthropology is the study of human beings in a biological context, and seeks to explain our relationship to other primates and to the rest of the natural world.  In other words, who are we? how are we unique? how, why, an when did we come to be the way we are?The study of physical anthropology requires many different types of knowledge.  Throughout the course, we will examine anatomical, behavioral, and genetic similarities and differences among living primates, learn the basic mechanisms of the evolutionary process, and trace a pathway of human evolution as reconstructed from the fossil record.  The main goal of the course is to obtain a clear understanding of our place in nature.


ANT 302 • Cultural Anthropology

30985 • Batz, Giovanni
Meets MW 1200pm-100pm GEA 105
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This course focuses on "classic" themes in anthropology such as ethnicity, language, adaptation, marriage, kinship, gender, religion, and social stratification.  We will consider anthropological theory from its 19th-century origins to the present.  The course also explores the nature of ethnographic field work, especially the relationship between the anthropologist and the field community.  
The lectures, readings, and films for this course have been selected with the objective of exploring the social meanings with which diverse groups invest their life.  By comparing and analyzing the similarities and differences between "us" and "others," both within the borders of the U.S. and abroad, the anthropological perspective can expose some of our own cultural assumptions and enable us to better understand diverse cultures.


ANT 302 • Cultural Anthropology

30990-31025 • SLOTTA, JAMES
Meets MW 200pm-300pm ART 1.102
show description

This course focuses on "classic" themes in anthropology such as ethnicity, language, adaptation, marriage, kinship, gender, religion, and social stratification.  We will consider anthropological theory from its 19th-century origins to the present.  The course also explores the nature of ethnographic field work, especially the relationship between the anthropologist and the field community.  
The lectures, readings, and films for this course have been selected with the objective of exploring the social meanings with which diverse groups invest their life.  By comparing and analyzing the similarities and differences between "us" and "others," both within the borders of the U.S. and abroad, the anthropological perspective can expose some of our own cultural assumptions and enable us to better understand diverse cultures.


ANT 302 • Cultural Anthropology

31027 • Hosemann, Aimee
Meets MW 100pm-230pm
show description

This course focuses on "classic" themes in anthropology such as ethnicity, language, adaptation, marriage, kinship, gender, religion, and social stratification.  We will consider anthropological theory from its 19th-century origins to the present.  The course also explores the nature of ethnographic field work, especially the relationship between the anthropologist and the field community.  
The lectures, readings, and films for this course have been selected with the objective of exploring the social meanings with which diverse groups invest their life.  By comparing and analyzing the similarities and differences between "us" and "others," both within the borders of the U.S. and abroad, the anthropological perspective can expose some of our own cultural assumptions and enable us to better understand diverse cultures.


ANT 304 • Intro Archaeol Stds: Prehist

31035-31060 • Valdez, Jr., Fred
Meets MW 800am-900am MEZ 1.306
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An introduction to archaeology as a discipline.  Three major themes that deal with issues of the past will be covered:

1.  A brief history of the discipline, changing theories about various aspects of the past, and the role that the reconstructions of the past play in national and/or group identities.

2.  A survey of the development of human culture from its beginnings to the rise of civilizations and proto-historical cultures in most areas of the world.  Prehistoric cultures, archaeological sites, and areas of Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe , and the Pacific will be covered.

3.  Archaeological methods of recovery of information about the past.  Scientific procedures involved in excavation, dating, and preservation of the material record.


ANT 304 • Intro Archaeol Stds: Prehist

31065-31090 • Covey, R. Alan
Meets MW 900am-1000am ART 1.102
show description

An introduction to archaeology as a discipline.  Three major themes that deal with issues of the past will be covered:

1.  A brief history of the discipline, changing theories about various aspects of the past, and the role that the reconstructions of the past play in national and/or group identities.

2.  A survey of the development of human culture from its beginnings to the rise of civilizations and proto-historical cultures in most areas of the world.  Prehistoric cultures, archaeological sites, and areas of Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe , and the Pacific will be covered.

3.  Archaeological methods of recovery of information about the past.  Scientific procedures involved in excavation, dating, and preservation of the material record.


ANT 304T • Intro To Texas Archaeology-Wb

31095 • Wade, Mariah D.
Meets MW 230pm-400pm
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People have been in Texas since about 12,000 years ago and the evidence of their presence throughout time is fascinating.  Ever wondered how we know and can prove that? This course introduces students to Texas archaeology through lectures, interactive virtual labs and hands-on laboratory sections that emphasize experimentation. Texas geographic and environmental diversity provided prehistoric and historic peoples with unique resources and possibilities, and people used that diversity to make choices and develop specific cultural characteristics while interacting with other peoples from the surrounding regions.

Doing archaeology requires teamwork, critical thinking and multidisciplinary approaches. In archaeology, it is often more important to ask relevant questions than provide ready answers. The lectures and labs in this course aim to emphasize these requirements as well as how archaeology relates to other sciences.

This course may be used to fulfill the natural science and technology (Part II) component of the common core curriculum and addresses the following four core objectives established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board: communication skills, critical thinking skills, teamwork, and empirical and quantitative skills.


ANT 305 • Expressive Culture

31105-31115 • Keeler, Ward
Meets MW 1000am-1100am MEZ B0.306
show description

The purpose of this course is to introduce the concept of culture as a crucial dimension of human life. Because we tend to think of thought and action as stemming from individual impulses, we find the notion of a shared, highly variable, but influential force in our lives hard to fathom.  Even if we speak of "society" as a familiar concept, we tend to make of it a uniform, oppressive force, some institution outside ourselves that we individually confront and oppose. Yet only if we can learn to recognize how deeply we share certain assumptions and inclinations with others--but only some others, and to varying degrees--can we appreciate the degree to which culture inheres within us and makes us who we are.


ANT 307 • Culture And Communication

31120
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 0.112
show description

The ability to learn and use language is a quintessentially human characteristic—one that distinguishes homo sapiens from other animal species. Language is simultaneously generated through and generative of social life; the former is a primary resource that we humans use in both the structuring and accomplishment of the latter. These dynamics form the subject of study of linguistic anthropology.

This course is an introduction to linguistic anthropology. It is impossible in a single semester to provide a complete overview of all topics that linguistic anthropologists address, so this course covers selected topics, the selection of which is aimed to illustrate how linguistic anthropologists go about doing their work: the range of topics they examine, the kinds of questions they ask, the types of approaches and methods they utilize, and the sorts of conclusions they reach.


ANT 310L • African American Culture

31125 • Foster, Kevin
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm GEA 105
(also listed as AFR 301, AMS 315)
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This course surveys African American cultural production from the 1600s to the present. Topics cover the circumstances and responses of blacks during North American enslavement, the Civil War, Reconstruction, Great Migration, The Harlem Renaissance, The Civil Rights Movement, and in contemporary contexts. Class sessions will reflect our reading of primary and secondary texts that embody a wide range of African American religious, political, social and artistic thought and production. The class will fill gaps in students’ knowledge about African American culture and history and provide a foundation for future Black Studies course work.

Required Texts: 

  • Kindred (Octavia Butler)
  • Souls of Black Folk (W.E.B. Du Bois)
  • Why We Can’t Wait (Martin Luther King, Jr.)
  • Price of the Ticket (Frederick Harris)
  • Good Ole’ Fashioned Composition Notebook

Graded Assessments (100 points available):

  • Unannounced (10) Quiz #1 Kindred, lectures & other readings Unannounced
  • (10) Quiz #2 Souls of Black Folk, lectures & other readings
  • Mid-term Test (30)
  • Unannounced (10) Quiz #3 Why We Can’t Wait, lectures & other readings
  • Unannounced (10) Quiz #4 (Price of the Ticket; lectures & other readings
  • Final Test (30)

ANT 310L • Intro East Austin Ethnography

31130 • Jones, Omi Osun Joni L.
Meets M 300pm-600pm CMA 5.190
(also listed as AFR 317D, AMS 315)
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In this course, students will study ethnographic methods including fieldwork, observant participation, interviewing, and oral histories. Archival research will also be conducted. Students will conduct fieldwork at specific sites in Austin with an emphasis on East Austin communitites. This course provides students with skills in critical ethnography by foregrounding the racial politics that shape policy-making and community-building.

Grading breakdown:

  • Project Focus 10%
  • Interview 10%
  • Oral History 10%
  • Observant Participation Notebook 30%
  • Research Project 30%
  • Participation 10%

ANT 310L • Intro Natv Am/Indig Studies

31135 • Tahmahkera, Dustin
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm BIO 301
(also listed as AMS 315, MAS 319)
show description

This interdisciplinary course introduces students to issues in Native American and Indigenous Studies, including but not limited to research conducted by affiliate faculty of the Native American and Indigenous Studies program at the University of Texas at Austin. Topics may include indigenous historiography, decolonization, geography, tribal law and policy, education, health, language revitalization, intellectualism, expressive culture, media, and other subjects.

Learning Outcomes:

  • To develop a critical understanding of key topics in Native American and Indigenous Studies
  • To use modes of inquiry applicable to subjects in Native American and Indigenous Studies
  • To gain an understanding of the course content’s importance to historical and contemporary Native America
  • To become proficient in learning how to communicate effectively about Native American and Indigenous issues 

 

TEXTS (Tentative)

Cox, James, and Daniel Heath Justice. The Oxford Handbook of Indigenous American Literature. New York: Oxford, 2014.

Dunbar-Ortiz, Roxanne. An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States. Boston: Beacon, 2014. 

Tuhiwai Smith, Linda. Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples, 2nd ed. New York: Zed, 2012.

Warrior, Robert. The World of Indigenous North America. New York: Routledge, 2015.

Wilkins, David, and Heidi Kiiwetinepinesiik Stark. American Indian Politics and the American Political System, 3rd ed. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2011.

 

GRADING (Tentative)

Participation                        20%

Homework Portfolio               20%

Essay Exams (3)                   30%

Final Project                         30%


ANT 310L • Muslims In Europe

31145 • Merabet, Sofian
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm SAC 4.118
(also listed as EUS 306, ISL 311)
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Based on the comparative approach between contemporary France and Germany, this interdisciplinary course examines the ways in which official Muslim identity has been negotiated and coopted institutionally by the state. Drawing on textual and visual materials in debates about religion, morality, and leadership, the course explores the interplay of cultural, social, political and economic factors in shaping current debates around the subject of an officially envisaged European Muslim identity. The class is intended to expose students to ethical issues pertaining to religious identity formation in two countries of the European Union. While the perspective of this course will be primarily anthropological, it will also be informed by historical, sociological, and legal approaches. Special attention will be paid to the history and controversies surrounding two institutions and their leadership, the French Council of the Muslim Faith, which was intended to serve as an official interlocutor with the French state in the regulation of Muslim religious activities, and the Muslim Coordination Council in Germany, which was founded in the wake of the first German Islam Conference in 2007. Moreover, in an effort to apply ethical reasoning in real-life situations, we will work to grasp the similarities and differences regarding everyday religious politics of ethics and leadership among Muslims living in France and Germany today, especially as these are shaped by historical processes associated with colonialism and nation-state-building as well as by the power of representations mobilized in a global world. 


ANT 310L • Anthropol Of Race/Ethnicity

31160-31165 • Hartigan, John
Meets MW 100pm-200pm CLA 0.102
(also listed as AFR 317D, AMS 315D)
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Objectives: Why are race and ethnicity such important aspects of our everyday lives? This course examines how and why these forms of identity matter so intensely, both in this country and around the world. Our aim is to understand the fundamental dynamics shaping racial and ethnic identity by drawing on theories and methods from anthropology. The first third of the course will cover key concepts and the basic forces that make ethnicity and race important. The second portion of the course will develop a cultural perspective on these topics by surveying a range of ethnographic work on these forms of identity. The final third of class will address a variety of ways that race and ethnicity operate in the sphere of public culture. Rather than attempt to present a survey of various groups and traditions, the aim of this course is to introduce students to the challenges of producing reliable knowledge claims about race and ethnicity.

Dynamics: The lectures and readings will present various aspects of ethnic and racial identity, using examples drawn from around the globe and our everyday lives. Discussion sections on Thursdays and Fridays provide students the opportunity to comment on and raise questions about the material. 


ANT 310L • Black Queer Diaspora Aesths

31175 • Gill, Lyndon K.
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm GWB 1.130
(also listed as AFR 317E, WGS 301)
show description

Exploration of over two decades of work produced by and about black queer subjects throughout the circum-Atlantic world. Provides an introduction to various artists and intellectuals of the black queer diaspora, as well as an examination of the viability of black queer aesthetic practice as a form of theorizing.

 


ANT 310L • Diaspora: Race/Natn/Resist

31180 • Makalani, Minkah
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm PAR 103
(also listed as AFR 317E)
show description

DIASPORA: RACE, NATION & RESISTANCE

This course offers students a comparative study in the makings and meanings of diaspora. We

begin by defining the differences and similarities between diaspora and related concepts such as

race, nation and cultural identity. Focusing specifically on black folk in the Americas, our

concerns will revolve around how different groups in diaspora have understood themselves, and

their relationships to others in the diaspora, their place within the nation, and how a sense of

their ties to one another has fostered alternative ways of being. In turn, how those in the African

diaspora have responded to their place within various nation-states (the United States, Haiti,

Brazil, Dominican Republic, England, etc.) has entailed various forms of resistance. Along these

lines, we will explore how African diasporic populations have responded to slavery, colonialism,

racial oppression, and modernity as they articulated notions of democracy that challenged

dominant structures of citizenship. We explore these ideas through looking at slave revolts,

anticolonial and Afro-Asian liberation struggles, Black/Third World Feminism, globalization,

and the sexual politics of diaspora. Across each of these themes, we work under the premise that

diaspora is an open and fluid space through which its participants “make our world anew.” (This

is a lower division undergrad course).

 

Requirements:

Students are expected to complete the course readings and to arrive prepared for

discussion based on the readings. Students are expected to maintain regular attendance. After

your third absence (your fourth absence), your grade will be lowered one letter grade (i.e., you

will receive a zero for Attendance). Class assignments include one take-home essay (4-pages,

typed and doubled spaced), an in-class midterm exam (identifications and short essay) and a final.

 

Grading:

  • Attendance: 10%
  • Participation: 15%
  • Essay Assignment 20%
  • Midterm: 20%
  • Final: 35%

• Extra Credit opportunities will be made available to students. Guidelines will be discussed in class

• Guidelines for all assignments, including the midterm and final exam, will be distributed throughout the course of

the semester.

 

Required Texts:

Available at the University Co-op Bookstore

  • Cathy J. Cohen, Democracy Remixed: Black Youth and the Future of American Politics.
  • W.E.B Du Bois, The Souls of Black Folk. (2008 Oxford edition; Intro. by Brent Hayes
  • Edwards)
  • George Lamming, The Pleasures of Exile.
  • Audre Lorde, Zami: A New Spelling of My Name.
  • All other readings available on blackboard, or as Electronic book from UT library.

ANT 320L • Indigenous Langs Of Amers

31195 • England, Nora C.
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CLA 0.104
(also listed as LAS 322, LIN 350)
show description

Examines various aspects of languages in the Americas, including their linguistic structures, the cultural domains in which they exist, and their histories of language contact and change.


ANT 320L • Talk, Text, And God

31200 • Handman, Courtney
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm SAC 4.118
(also listed as R S 373)
show description

While anthropologists often study the religious practices of the societies they describe, Christianity has long been neglected or specifically avoided in ethnographies. However, as Christianity has become an important part of many post-colonial communities, anthropologists are starting to examine this now global religious tradition. This course will introduce students to the anthropological study of Christianity, particularly in colonial and post-colonial settings. How can an anthropology of Christianity cope with the wide diversity of traditions that go under the Christian label? How have people understood the relationship between Christian missionization and other institutions of colonialism? In this course we will focus in particular on the ways in which Christian missionaries and Christian communities participate in traditions of textual circulation in which people are reading, translating, studying, arguing with, resisting, or praying from the Bible. We will also compare these traditions to Christian communities that emphasize non-linguistic forms of religious practice.


ANT 322M • Natv Amer Cul Greater Sthwst

31205 • Webster, Anthony K.
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CLA 0.106
(also listed as AMS 321)
show description

This class explores the diverse Native cultures of the Southwest. The class focuses on the philosophical underpinnings and the frameworks of meaning and moral responsibility of indigenous peoples of the American Southwest. The goal is to give students a broader view of the Native peoples of North America and specifically of the Southwest. By focusing on the diverse peoples and cultures of the Southwest, this course aims to increase knowledge concerning specific Native populations today (Hopi, Navajo, Apache, Zuni, Tohono O’odham, Yaqui, and others). This course pays particular attention to expressive forms, current political issues, political economy, and the on-going legacy of settler colonialism.

 


ANT 324L • Archaeol Excavation Analysis

31210 • Franklin, Maria
Meets T 900am-1200pm SAC 4.174
show description

This is a lab-based course where students will work directly with artifacts recovered from a historic site in central Texas. The assemblage largely consists of a wide spectrum of household- related artifacts, including ceramics, container glass, decorative objects, personal effects, and so on. The general goal is to train students in basic archaeological lab methods, technical report writing, and artifact analysis. These are foundational skill sets applicable to all practices of archaeology.

By the end of the semester, students should be able to demonstrate:

  • -  basic identification and cataloging of artifacts, mainly dating from circa 1900 to the

    1960s.

  • -  How to create tables and graphics and write a descriptive analysis of artifacts for a

    typical archaeological site report.

  • -  How to assess various artifact types in terms of their potential to address different

    research questions (e.g., site dating, site transformation processes, household economy, identity, etc.). 


ANT 324L • Contemp African Pop Culture

31220 • Livermon, Xavier
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 0.122
(also listed as AFR 372G, WGS 340)
show description

The aim of this course is to introduce students to some of the most significant aspects of popular culture in contemporary sub-Saharan Africa. Manifestations of popular culture are considered as markers of modern African identities, embedded in complex and varied socio-cultural, historical and political contexts. Within the current era of global, diasporic, and transnational flows, it is neither sufficient any longer to view Africa solely from the perspective of political economies, nor to discuss contemporary African culture within the tradition-versus-modernity debate. Manifestations of popular culture in Africa show that the continent is part and parcel of the postmodern world, with cultural production simultaneously influenced by global trends and specific African contexts. The course will cover various forms of cultural expression and genres, including popular film, music, literature, dance, comics and cartoons, fashion, sport, street art, theatre, and contemporary visual arts. Attention will be paid to the production modes, audiences and sites of consumption of these different genres and aspects of popular culture. Course instruction will include extensive film and clip viewings, analysis of music, and reading fictional texts such as popular novels and comics.

Texts:

  • Marguerite Abouet Aya: Life in Yop City.
  • Nadine Dolby: Constructing Race: Youth, Identity and Popular Culture in South Africa.
  • Manthia Diawara In Search of Africa.
  • Sokari Ekine ed. SMS Uprising: Mobile Activism in Africa. 
  • Relebohile Moletsane, Claudia Mitchell, and Ann Smith eds. Was it Something I Wore? Dress, Identity, Materialitiy.
  • Mwenda Ntarangwi East African Hip-Hop: Youth Culture and Globalization.
  • Simon Weller and Garth Walker South African Township Barbershops and Salons.

Grading breakdown (percentages):

  • Attendance and Participation 20%
  • Response Papers 20%
  • Midterm 20%
  • Final 40%

ANT 324L • Globalization In Latin Amer

31225 • Canova, Paola
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm SRH 1.320
(also listed as LAS 324L)
show description

This seminar critically examines globalization from an economic perspective in contemporary Latin America.  It combines theoretical approaches with ethnographic work to explore how global flows of capital, people, commodities, media, and ideologies are shaping the region and different groups of people at the local level.  Among the questions that this course addresses are: Is globalization a new phenomenon? How does it shape relations with other parts of the world? What are the roles of multinational corporations and multilateral institutions such as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund in economic globalization? How do people mediate processes of globalization in culturally specific ways? How does globalization shape inequlities? Themes that will be explored include main debates and critiques of globalization, historical backgrounds; political economies; cultural aspects; and ecological dimensions.


ANT 324L • Japanese Concepts Body/Self

31230 • Traphagan, John W.
Meets MWF 900am-1000am BUR 220
(also listed as ANS 372, R S 352)
show description

In this course, we will endeavor to navigate some of the extensive anthropological literature that has been written on Japanese conceptualizations of self and body and explore how these concepts intersect with ideas about religion and morality.  The "self" has been one of the central themes in ethnographic writing about Japan since Ruth Benedict's work The Chrysanthemum and the Sword was published in the 1940's.  We will consider how Japanese educational approaches contribute to the formation of paritcular forms of behavior; how selves change over the life course; Japanese conceptualizations of the body and person; and how Japanese ideas about self and body are expressed in medical practices.  The course is discussion-based and will incorporate films in addition to ethnographic writings.  Grading will be based upon five response papers and mid-term take-home and final take-home exams.

 

Assignments:

  • Midpterm exam: 20%
  • Final exam: 30%
  • Five 2-page response papers: 50%

ANT 324L • Pottery Processes

31235 • Valdez, Jr., Fred
Meets M 330pm-630pm T5D 1.102
show description

Prehistoric Technology - Pottery Processes incorporates theoretical issues of pottery producion as well as hands-on requirements of making functional pottery forms. The introduction of pottery in prehistoric times marks permanent settlements, the beginnings of village life (and complex society), the implementation of standards towards craft specialization, and related social-political implications.

For the hands-on portion of the course, students will learn about and perform the collecting of raw clay.  The collected clay will then be processed in varied steps to prepare the material for the construction of a functional vessel. THe formed items will be open-fired; which requires understanding prehistoric firing techniques, and the mechanics of removing fired objects from the pyre.


ANT 324L • Sentience, Cultr, & Rlgn: Seti

31240 • Traphagan, John W.
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm BUR 220
(also listed as R S 373)
show description

Humans have long wondered whether or not we are alone in the universe.  Are there other civilizations?  If so, how are they similar or different from ours? Or are humans virtually alone in the universe, as has been proposed in the rare Earth hypothesis.  This course explores the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) and its relationship to both culture and religion.  One central question we will consider is whether SETI is a producet of particular cultural and historical trends that have arisen in the US and that are evident through other cultural contsructs such as Star Trek.  Our exploration will consider important key idea such as the Drak Equation and the Incommensurability Problem and will look at meanings and motivations behind issues such as Percival Lowell's quest to prove the existence of canals on Mars and the cevelopment of Scientology.  Although to date there is no unequivocal evidence for the existence of extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI), contemplation of the scientific search for extraterrestrail intelligence, as well as ETI in the human imagination, provides an opportunity to contemplate humanity and ideas about its place in the universe as well as the ways in which culture shapes our concepts of alien others.

 

Grading:

  • Mid-term take-home exam (30%)
  • Internet research project (30%)
  • Final take-home exam (40%)

ANT 324L • Intro To African Prehistory

31250 • Denbow, James R.
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm SAC 4.174
(also listed as AFR 322)
show description

This course provides an overview of human biological and cultural evolution in Africa. The roots of humankind go back almost 6 million years on the continent. The earliest materials will be discussed briefly so that we can focus on the last 200,000 years when modern humans developed and diversified in the modern communities of today. This is still an enormous task when one considers that human history in the New world only began around 17,000 years ago and that the African continent is more than three times the size of the continental United States! Today there are more than a thousand different languages spoken in Africa and cultural, as well as ecological, diversity is great. Apart from Egypt, Ethiopia, the Swahili coast and North Africa, however, written sources only document the last few centuries of this long history, and most were written from non-African perspectives.

Because Africa is so large and diverse, and much of it only cursorily explored from an archaeological perspective, the main archaeological text for the course will focus on Africa south of the Kunene/Okavango/Zambezi watershed where the most extensive archaeological work has so far been conducted. The lectures will expand on this background to bring material up to date and include discussion of other areas of East, Central, West and North Africa when pertinent. Students are encouraged to raise questions during the lectures in order to ensure that topics of interest to you are discussed—it is your class after all. No prior knowledge of Africa or of archaeology is assumed.

The course carries the Global Cultures flag. Global Cultures courses are designed to increase your familiarity with cultural groups outside the United States. Therefore a substantial portion of your grade will come from assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of non-U.S. cultural groups, past and present. 


ANT 324L • Sacred & Ceremonl Textiles

31260 • Shirazi, Faegheh
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm BEN 1.124
(also listed as ISL 372, MEL 321, R S 358, WGS 340)
show description

Textiles and material objects indigenous to the Islamic world, and what they reveal about the culture of various Islamic societies.

Only one of the following may be counted unless the topics vary: Arabic 322, 360K, 372; Hebrew 372, 374; Islamic Studies 372; Persian 361, 372; Turkish 361, 372; Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures 321; Middle Eastern Studies 342. Only one of the following may be counted: Anthropology 324L (Topic 29), Islamic Studies 372 (Topic 11), Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures 321 (Topic: Sacred and Ceremonial Textiles), 321 (Topic 34), Middle Eastern Studies 322K (Topic 24), 328 (Topic: Sacred and Ceremonial Textiles), Religious Studies 358 (Topic: Sacred and Ceremonial Textiles), 358 (Topic 11), Textiles and Apparel 355 (Topic: Sacred and Ceremonial Textiles), Women's and Gender Studies 340 (Topic: Sacred and Ceremonial Textiles), 340 (Topic 57).

 


ANT 324L • Pol Of Race/Violnc Brazil

31265 • Smith, Christen
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm SAC 4.118
(also listed as AFR 374E, LAS 324L, WGS 340)
show description

This course explores race/gender/sexuality, violence and everyday life in Brazil. Brazil’s history has been characterized by moments of violent encounter, from colonization, to slavery, to clashes between police and residents across its major cities today. These violent encounters have been, in many ways, racialized, gendered and sexualized. This class investigates the race/gender/sexuality aspects of multiple forms of violence in Brazil, and how this violence creates, defines and maintains social hierarchies in the nation. Throughout the class we will think through the question “what is violence?” as we discuss the concept’s physical, structural and symbolic forms. The course pays particular attention to the politics of blackness and the unique relationship black Brazilians have to the nation-state. We will also discuss the politics of writing and theorizing violence when doing social analysis, and the precarious balance between defining and addressing issues of violence, and glorifying it. Objectives: 1) To think critically about violence not only as a physical encounter, but a multilayered phenomenon that manifests itself in different ways; 2) To consider how race functions in Brazil and what violence has to do with it; 3) To better understand the politics of discussing and writing about race and violence particularly within the field of anthropology. Key topics: Colonization, slavery, blackness, whiteness, racial democracy, urban conflict, police repression, death, gender, sexuality, urban cleansing/gentrification, land conflict, imprisonment, symbolic violence, structural violence, physical violence, and genocide. 


ANT 324L • Urban Unrest

31270 • Tang, Eric
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm PAR 203
(also listed as AAS 330, AFR 372F, AMS 321, URB 354)
show description

How and when do cities burn? The modern US city has seen its share of urban unrest, typified by street protests (both organized and spontaneous), the destruction of private property, looting, and fires. Interpretations of urban unrest are varied: some describe it as aimless rioting, others as political insurrection. Most agree that the matter has something to do with the deepening of racism, poverty and violence. This course takes a closer look at the roots of urban unrest, exploring a range of origins: joblessness, state violence, white flight, the backlash against civil rights gains, new immigration and interracial strife. Urban unrest is often cast as an intractable struggle between black and white, yet this course examines the ways in which multiple racial groups have entered the fray. Beyond race and class, the course will also explore unrest as a mode of pushing the normative boundaries of gender and sexuality in public space. Course material will draw from film, literature, history, geography and anthropology.

 

Required Texts: 

  • The majority of readings will be available as pdf on Blackboard. Students must acquire the following texts:
  • Robert F. Williams, Negroes With Guns
  • Robin D.G. Kelley, Yo Mama’s Dysfunctional: Fighting the Culture Wars in Urban America
  • Dan Georgakis and Marvin Surkin, Detroit: I Do Mind Dying: A Study in Urban Revolution
  • Robert Gooding Williams eds. Reading Rodney King/Reading Urban Uprising

ANT 325L • Cultures And Ecologies

31290 • Campbell, Craig
Meets F 100pm-400pm CLA 1.108
(also listed as REE 345)
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This seminar examines the anthropology of “nature” and “natural resources,” with particular attention to the communities in the arctic and subarctic regions. We will use ethnographies to learn about the cultures of peoples who inhabit northern latitudes (e.g. Russia, Alaska, Canada), especially their cosmological modes of belief and their ecological ways of life. We will explore the complexities of culture change through the lens of colonialism and question the popular misconceptions that these peoples are out-of-time with the ‘modern’ world. Climate change is disproportionately affecting northern peoples, and the imperiled arctic has been caught in the global politics of energy. We will engage in a nuanced exploration of human experience framed against industrialism and extractive economies in the North, along the way considering controversial topics such as energy futures and the ends of history.

Flags: Global Cultures, Independent Inquiry, Writing


ANT 325L • Jewish Folklore

31295 • Gottesman, Yitskhok (Itzik) N.
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm GDC 2.402
(also listed as GSD 360, J S 363, R S 357, REE 325)
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Course Description

Dybbuks, golems, evil eye are just some of the more well-known aspects of Jewish folklore, but this course will also examine the folklife of the Jews, their world view, their folk beliefs and fears. Call it folk religion if you will; many of these practices were dismissed by the "offical" Jewish religion as unJewish, but the "folk" persisted and eventually the practice became Judaized and accepted. The influence of the Kabbalah, Jewish mysticism, also led to the introduction of many customs.

Using literary sources, ethnographic memoirs, historical documents, films (among them "The Dybbuk" 1939), folkore collections and field trips (among them - to the oldest Austin Jewish cemetery), we will focus on what makes Jewish folklore Jewish. For example, the high literacy rate among Jews over the centuries and the people's close connection to the written word led to the development of specifically Jewish interpretations of internationally disseminated beliefs. Folklore genres -folktale, legend, folksong, folkmusic, custom, belief and, of course, Jewish humor will be included.

 

Grading Policy

  • Attendance, homework and class participation: 30%
  • Four short papers 30%
  • Midterm and final paper: 40%

 

Reading List

  • Joshua Trachternberg   Jewish Magic and Superstition
  • Joachim Neugroschel   Great Tales of Jewish Fantasy and the Occult
  • Moses Gaster    Maaseh Book
  • I. B. Singer    The Satan in Goray
  • Elizabeth Herzog/Mark Zborowski   Life is With People

ANT 325L • Rep Of Jews Amer Pub Sphere

31305 • Seriff, Suzanne
Meets TTH 930am-1100am SAC 4.118
(also listed as J S 365, R S 346)
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This course will critically examine how Jews have been represented and constituted in American public culture--as race, religion and/or nation-- through distinct institutions and display practices such as world's fairs, museum exhibits, photographic displays, immigration stations, and public/private spaces of home, leisure and work. We will focus especially on the ways in which distinct events and exhibitions constitute a particular image of the "Jew" in American diasporic life by way of an exhibitionary logic that dictates the way objects or subjects are classified, their arrangement in space, their status as art or artifact, their contextualization, their animation and mode of display. We also pay attention to specific moments in American public history when these "agencies of display" were used in the service of nation-building to forward distinct--and often competing--notions of Jews in American life as both "curiosities, freaks or archeological specimens" on the one had, or enthusiastic embracers of the American assimilationist dream, on the other. Students will have the opportunity to participate directly in creating and/or critiquing this process of cultural production--either through original field research of a local exhibitionary site; planning and designing a specific mode of display; or providing a critical analysis of an historic example of this production. This class includes two museum field trips to explore exhibits in which Jews are represented in very different "exhibitionary complexes".

 

Grading:

  • Papers (2 x 25%)
  • Final Research / Performative Project (25%)
  • Class Participation / Attendance (25%)
  • Attendance (10%)
  • Online Comments (5%)
  • Pop Quizzes (5%)
  • Lead Class (5%)

 

Readings:

Edward Lowenthal. 1997: Preserving Memory: The Making of the Holocaust Memorial Museum. Penguin Books

Frederic Brenner: Jews, America: A Representation / photographs by Frederic Brenner; with an essay by Simon Schama (note: arrangements will be made to have this book available for students so that they will not be required to buy the text)

Qurantine! Eastern European Jewish Immigrants and the New York City Epidemics of 1892

Susan L. Braunstein and Jenna Weissman Joselit 1990. Getting Comfortable in New York: The American Jewish Home, 1880-1950. The Jewish Museum (or BKG article in this volume: Kitchen Judaism)

Ivan Davidson Kalmar and Derek Johathan Penslar. 2004. Orientalism and the Jews. Hanover; University Press of New England.

Course Packet: Representations of Jews in American Public Culture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


ANT 326L • Cultures In Contact

31315 • Wilson, Samuel M.
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm WEL 2.246
(also listed as LAS 324L)
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"Cultures in Contact" is a multi-disciplinary course which combines Historical, Anthropological, Geographical and Literary analyses of the continuing "contact period" in the New World.  The issues addressed span the last 500+ years of cultural interaction in the Americas, looking especially at the processes of cultural interaction, competition, cooperation, and synthesis that have taken place among people from the Americas, Europe, Africa, and Asia.


ANT 340C • Ethnographic Research Methods

31325 • Sturm, Circe
Meets M 200pm-500pm SAC 4.120
show description

Understanding human behavior is immensely challenging. Fortunately, there are tools

to help us make sense of social, cultural and political complexity. This course offers an

introduction to the various methods and techniques used in conducting ethnographic

research such as participant observation, interviewing, collecting life histories and

genealogies, archival research, working with material culture, social media-based

research, and visual ethnography. Our primary objectives will be to explore research

design, what constitutes evidence, how to analyze data, and strategies for writing up

and presenting results. We will pay particular attention to the ethical considerations

entailed in anthropological research, including questions of knowledge production,

power, location, experience, translation and representation. The course is run largely as

a “hands–on” workshop, in which students practice a variety of ethnographic methods

(both inside and outside of class), engage in ethnographic writing exercises, and actively

guide one another’s work. Students will apply what they learn during the course to

designing their own ethnographic research project, conducting independent field

research, and presenting their findings to the class. By the end of the semester, they will

have a firm grounding in ethnographic research methods and be better prepared for

more advanced work.


ANT 346L • Primate Social Behavior

31330 • Lewis, Rebecca J.
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am SAC 4.118
(also listed as WGS 323)
show description

 

COURSDESCRIPTIOANOBJECTIVE:

This course focuses on the study of primate behavior and why primates do what they do.

It is essentially a course on animal behavior with a focus on primates.  Thus, this class will explore the basic theoretical principles that guide primatologists and other zoologists. As we examine some of the models used to explain primate behavior, we will explore the behavior of the four radiations of primates in detail.

 

The objective of this course is for students to understand the major theoretical concepts of primate behavior.

 

COURSREQUIREMENTS:

Prerequisite: ANT 301

 

 


ANT 346M • Comparative Primate Ecology

31335 • Lewis, Rebecca J.
Meets MWF 900am-1000am SAC 4.118
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Comparative Primate Ecology will explore the following topics with respect to primates: population ecology, community ecology, feeding adaptations, foraging strategies, ranging behavior, and life history strategies.


ANT 453 • Archaeological Analysis

31350 • Valdez, Jr., Fred
Meets MW 1000am-1200pm SAC 4.174
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The purpose of this course to provide you (the course participants) with a background to “the kinds” of archaeological analyses that often occur, “what” is involved in archaeological analysis, and “how” archaeological analysis may be approached. This means learning what questions to ask about a field or laboratory project and the steps needed to understand the type of analysis required. From this course you should also become aware of “how to do” an analysis from start (first learning about certain material culture) to completion (doing the analysis and the report writing).

 

 

Prerequisite: Anthropology 304 or Archaeology 301.

 


ANT 366 • Anat And Bio Of Human Skeleton

31360 • Kappelman Jr, John W.
Meets TTH 1230pm-100pm SAC 5.172
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This course introduces the student to an in-depth study of the human skeleton. Class sessions combine lecture and laboratory sessions and cover topics including developmental biology, functional morphology, and skeletal identification, with a special focus on the latter skill as it relates to forensics and archaeological studies. Students will also be introduced to new 3D imaging techniques for studying the skeleton. 

This class requires both intensive in-class and out-of-class preparation. Participants must be prepared to handle actual human osteological specimens and have a professional approach to this subject and the human remains. An interest in human skeletal identification is especially applicable to the fields of archeology, physical anthropology, health sciences, law, and law enforcement.