LING 374 - Language and Culture
Section: 001
Term: FA 2018
Subject: Linguistics (LING)
Department: LSA Linguistics
Requirements & Distribution:
Advisory Prerequisites:
Sophomore standing.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

This course is concerned with the relations among language, thought, and culture.

The first half of the course centers on how language as a system of signs makes culture possible. It looks at some basic questions about the nature of human language and its implications for how people make sense of the world. We ask such things as these:

  • What do we share with other animal systems of communication and what is peculiar about human language?
  • How does language shape the way we perceive and think about the things around us — and how does the world shape language?
  • How does language let people mean things?
The second half of the course focuses on language in action and interaction. We explore the dynamics of everyday conversations, the artful uses of language in performance, and aspects of power such as the politics of gender, national identity, and social status.

Although most of the readings are drawn from anthropology, we will also venture into closely related areas in linguistics, sociology, and psychology.

Course Requirements:

There are four written exercises: two short (2-4 page) take-home essays and two in-class exams. The essays may involve some observations of your own surroundings but otherwise make use only of readings on the syllabus. Attendance in both lectures and discussion sections is mandatory and will be reflected in the final grade. Active participation in discussion sections is expected.

Intended Audience:

This course does not assume any background in linguistics and has no prerequisites.

Class Format:

No data submitted

LING 374 - Language and Culture
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
TuTh 11:30AM - 1:00PM
002 (DIS)
W 10:00AM - 11:00AM
003 (DIS)
W 3:00PM - 4:00PM
004 (DIS)
Th 3:00PM - 4:00PM
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