ANTHRCUL 579 - Semiotic Anthropology
Fall 2022, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: Anthropology, Cultural (ANTHRCUL)
Department: LSA Anthropology
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Advisory Prerequisites:
400-level course work in Anthropology and Graduate standing.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:
Start/End Date:
Full Term 8/29/22 - 12/9/22 (see other Sections below)
NOTE: Drop/Add deadlines are dependent on the class meeting dates and will differ for full term versus partial term offerings.
For information on drop/add deadlines, see the Office of the Registrar and search Registration Deadlines.


This seminar explores contemporary approaches to signs through the close reading of selected theoretical works, from such foundational figures as Peirce, Saussure, and Derrida, to recent theoretical and ethnographic writing.  We take the rubric "semiotic" in the broadest sense, as the study of representation in general, the sign in particular.  Among our guiding concerns are these: What are the questions to which semiotics seeks to provide answers?  What further questions might semiotics in turn raise?  What is it about social and political life that makes signs central to our understanding of it?  How do different concepts of representation and models of the sign change our understanding of culture, society, politics?  What are the implications for our understanding of agency, power, and ideology?  How do language, images, gestures, objects, and other semiotic phenomena differ, what do they have in common?  We will be especially concerned with how theories shed light on concrete empirical research, and conversely, how empirical research can force us to reconsider theories.  Graduate students from any department are welcome.  For questions, contact Webb Keane (


ANTHRCUL 579 - Semiotic Anthropology
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
 In Person
8/29/22 - 12/9/22

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