ANTHRCUL 328 - Globalizing Consumer Cultures
Section: 001
Term: WN 2008
Subject: Anthropology, Cultural (ANTHRCUL)
Department: LSA Anthropology
Requirements & Distribution:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

This course addresses the global spread of forms of consumer culture and their local appropriations, in places as similar and diverse as Hungary, the U.K., India, Argentina, the United States, China, Papua New Guinea, Sweden and Nepal. We will begin with anthropological approaches to consumption: gift exchange and the commodity, commoditization, the body and habitus, social/class distinction, as well more recent approaches to modern consumption as a process of materializing social relations. We will also look at the role of advertising, branding and globalizing consumer forms~fromC oca-cola to Pokemo, examining local appropriations and the role of trans-local commodities, commodified experiences, and consumer practices in (re)defining national identities and citizens as consumers. Throughout, we will be attentive to the phenomenon of globalizing "middle class culture" and its legitimizing discourses, examining how local requirements for social respectability, normalcy and modernity are increasingly defined by the lifestyles of imagined middle class citizens in so-called "first world" countries. We also will be reflecting on the specific materiality of particular consumer goods and forms, from the modern coffee table and audio-visual technologies to hygiene products and settings (i.e., bathrooms) in constructing fantasies of global, middle-class belonging. In the process, we will attempt to defamiliarize the American middle-class experience.

Intended audience: Meets 3 hpw lecture format.

Course Requirements: Discussion, weekly memos on readings, midterm, short presentations, final paper of 10-15 pgs.

Class Format: Sophomores to Seniors interested in socio-cultural anthropology, sociology, history, international affairs, advertising & marketing, business/economics, environment and natural resources, media and popular culture.

ANTHRCUL 328 - Globalizing Consumer Cultures
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
TuTh 11:30AM - 1:00PM
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 328 (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 Office of Academic Innovation, 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)