ANTHRCUL 474 - Language, Ethnicity, and Nationalism
Section: 001
Term: WN 2007
Subject: Anthropology, Cultural (ANTHRCUL)
Department: LSA Anthropology
Advisory Prerequisites:
Upperclass standing.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

Many Americans and Europeans assume that communities normally are, or ought to be, monolingual — that language differences divide people from one another, while a common language unites them. Yet, much of the world is multilingual.

What do language differences mean for their speakers' social identities and relationships? In this course we will consider the relationship between communication and community -- particularly as these have been conceptualized (and ideologized) under the rubrics of "tribe," "ethnic group," and "nation." We will explore what kinds of social groupings those terms might (or might not) label, and how they might (or might not) connect with languages and with communication networks. Our approach will be crossculturally comparative and, where relevant, historical. Through a discussion of selected theoretical works and case studies, we will consider topics such as language use in small-scale societies; the functions of multilingualism; the politics of language standardization and print media; language and the idea of "nation" in nineteenth-century Europe; the European colonial expansion and its influence on indigenous peoples and languages; and the role of language in nationalistic movements.

Course readings will consist mainly of journal articles and book chapters, along with books such as Hobsbawm’s Nations and Nationalism Since 1780 and Anderson’s Imagined Communities. In addition to discussing general issues and some case materials presented in readings and in class, students will independently explore and report on a particular case study. Evaluation will be based on class participation (including discussion-leading and a class presentation), some short writing assignments, a take-home test, and a term paper.

No prerequisites, but students should have at least junior class standing.

ANTHRCUL 474 - Language, Ethnicity, and Nationalism
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
TuTh 1:00PM - 2:30PM
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.
Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

Click the button below to view historical syllabi for ANTHRCUL 474 (UM login required)

View Historical Syllabi
The CourseProfile (ART) system, supported by the U-M Provost’s 3rd Century Initiative through a grant to the Digital Innovation Greenhouse, provides additional information about: course enrollments; academic terms and instructors; student academic profiles (school/college, majors), and previous, concurrent, and subsequent course enrollments.

CourseProfile (ART)