Courses in Biological Anthropology (Division 318)

161. Introduction to Biological Anthropology. (4). (NS).

Biological anthropology is a subfield of anthropology dealing with human biology and evolution. This course presents a survey of the major topics in the field. The course is divided into four major parts: (1) human genetics and evolutionary theory; (2) primate behavior and evolution; (3) the human fossil record; and (4) ecological, biological, and demographic variability in modern populations. No special background knowledge is required or assumed.

365. Human Evolution. Sophomore standing. (3). (NS).

Human evolution has been a biological process with both social and physical aspects. Through lectures and reading, the interrelated process of behavioral and physical change is outlined for the human line. Emphasis is placed on evolutionary mechanisms, and context is provided through an understanding of the pre-human primates. The human story begins with origins and the appearance of unique human features such as bipedality, the loss of cutting canines, the appearance of continual sexual receptivity, and the development of complex social interactions. An early ecological shift sets the stage for the subsequent evolution of intelligence, technology and the changes in physical form that are the consequences of the unique feedback system involving cultural and biological change. The origin of races and their development and relationships are discussed in this context. Class participation and discussion are emphasized. Student evaluations are based on a midterm and final examination. (Wolpoff)

368/Psychology 368. Primate Social Behavior I. (4). (NS).

An introductory course that will familiarize students with the primate order and its major divisions, and provide detailed knowledge of several of the widely studied species of prosimians, monkeys and apes. The major focus of the course will be the evolutionary significance of behavior in the wild, and special attention is therefore given to primate ecology and long-term field studies. Social organization, behavioral development, kinship systems, sexual behavior, aggression and competition, and similar topics are then described and analyzed from the perspective of modern evolutionary theory. This course can be taken on its own, but it also serves as an introduction to 369, Primate Social Relationships. Two lecture hours, one film, and one discussion section weekly. One midterm and one final exam. (Wrangham)

371. Techniques in Biological Anthropology. Permission of instructor. May not be included in a concentration plan in anthropology. (1-3). (Excl). May be elected for a total of 6 credits.

Individual work in preparing specimens used in physical anthropology laboratories (skeletons, fresh specimens, casts, fossil materials, etc.). Individual work in the use of (1) anthropometric techniques for evaluation of human nutritional status inferred from measurements of body size and body components such as body fat and body muscle and (2) human variability in lung function and skin color. (Frisancho)

461. Genetic Basis of Human Evolution. Anthro. 161 or the equivalent, and junior standing; or permission of instructor. (3). (NS).

The application of genetic theory and data to the interpretation of the course of human evolution. The data include variation both among human populations and among humans and their close primate relatives. Reconciliation of the genetic data with various views of the fossil record will also be considered. Lectures and course pack. Grade based on midterm and final exam. (Livingstone)

469. Topics in Biological Anthropology. Permission of instructor. (2-4). (Excl).

This course is jointly offered with Psychology 502.001. (Smuts)

563. Mechanisms of Human Adaptation. Senior standing or permission of instructor. (3). (NS).

The course is addressed at evaluating the physiological responses and adaptations that enable humans to survive environmental extremes such as those found under stressful conditions of heat, cold, solar radiation, high altitude, undernutrition, overnutrition, and Westernization of dietary habits. Because this course is addressed to students of the several disciplines and to facilitate understanding of the mechanisms of human adaptation to environmental stress, the discussion of major topics is preceded by sections outlining initial responses observed in laboratory studies with humans and experimental animals. Emphasis is given to the short adaptive mechanisms that enable an organism to acclimate itself to a given environmental stress. Subsequently, the long-term adaptive mechanisms that enable humans to acclimatize themselves to natural, stressful environmental conditions are discussed. Throughout the course, emphasis is given to the effects of environmental stresses and the adaptive responses that an organism makes during its growth and development and their implications for understanding the origins of population differences in biological traits. Student evaluation includes two tests, a final exam, and a term paper. The method of instruction is lecture and some discussion. (Frisancho)

569. Interdisciplinary Perspectives. Permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

See Psychology 569. (Smuts)

Courses in Cultural Anthropology (Division 319)

Courses are arranged by groups: Introductory Courses, Ethnology-Regional Courses, Ethnology-Theory|slash|Method, Ethnology-Topical Courses, Linguistics, Archaeology, and Museum and Reading and Research Courses.

Introductory Courses

101. Introduction to Anthropology. Primarily for freshmen and sophomores. No credit granted to those who have completed 222 or 426. (4). (SS).

Exposure to anthropology's cross-cultural, comparative and holistic viewpoints, and to ethnography, the field's characteristic data-gathering procedure, are important in a liberal arts education. Anthropology 101, which surveys the field's four subdisciplines (biological, archeological, cultural, and linguistic anthropology) provides students (generally freshmen and sophomores) with a first glimpse of the field's overall context, history, present status, and importance. Anthropology 101 stresses unifying principles that link the subdisciplines and thereby create anthropology's comprehensive, holistic world view. Anthropology 101 teaches students various ways of learning and thinking about the world's many designs for living in time and space. It prepares them to integrate and interpret information, to evaluate conflicting claims about nature and diversity, and to think critically. As is proper for a distribution course, the principal aim of Anthropology 101 is to help students develop a coherent view of the essential concepts, structures, and intellectual methods which typify the discipline. This introductory course exposes and explores the structures of inquiry characteristic of anthropology, as well as surveying its content. (As such it is also recommended for anthropology concentrators.) Topics covered include: the nature of culture, human genetics, evolution and the fossil record, the concept of race, primate (monkey and ape) behavior, language and culture, systems of marriage, kinship and family organization, sex-gender roles, economics, politics and religion in global perspective, the cultural dimension of economic development and contemporary social change, and the emergence of a world system. Required readings include a basic text and three paperbacks. Students must register for the three weekly lectures (Section 001) and a discussion-recitation section. Two objective exams (multiple choice and true or false questions) cover the two halves of the course. The second exam is given on the last day of class. There is no final exam and no term paper. Section leaders require quizzes and, perhaps, a short paper. Information about an extra credit (2) option will be provided in lecture on the first day of class. (Fricke)

222. The Comparative Study of Cultures. No credit granted to those who have completed 101 or 426. Students with credit for Anthro. 101 should elect Anthro. 327. (4). (SS).

The purpose of this course is to acquaint students with the great variety existing in human culture and society so that they can place their own particular way of life in proper perspective. Its subject matter is world ethnology with special emphasis on social organization and economy. Lectures and readings are organized according to complexity of society; the course begins with hunters and gatherers, progresses through various tribal and peasant societies, and concludes with contemporary industrial nations. The approach is comparative. Lectures are supplemented by weekly discussion sections augmented by a variety of readings, primarily ethnographic in nature, and by frequent showings of ethnographic films. Course requirements include a midterm examination, a final examination, and a paper applying principles learned in the course to some aspect of the student's own life. Both examinations primarily consist of essay questions. This course is intended for non-concentrators. (Lockwood)

282. Introduction to Prehistoric Archaeology. (4). (SS).

This course will combine both a general survey of world prehistory and a presentation of the techniques, methods, and theories of prehistoric archaeology as a social science. The survey of world prehistory will focus on three main processes in the development of human culture: a) the emergence of human culture from a primate background, b) the origins of domesticated plants and animals and the establishment of village farming communities, and c) the rise of complex states and empires from these simpler farming societies. The presentation of techniques, methods, and theory will cover field and laboratory techniques for acquiring information about past cultures, analytical methods for using that information to test ideas about past cultural organization and evolution, and current theoretical developments in archaeology as an explanatory social science. The course will be oriented as much toward students with a general curiosity and interest in the field as toward eventual concentrators. There will be three lectures plus one discussion section per week. Requirements include a midterm and a final examination, plus two take-home exercises which give students experience with the application of analytical methods to real archaeological data. (O'Shea)

Ethnology-Regional Courses

315. Indians of North America. (4). (SS).

The course provides an introduction to Native North American peoples and involves a detailed discussion of several typical cultures and culture areas, with a special emphasis on modes of subsistence, economic and social organization, and religion. By focusing on native world views, an attempt is also made to gain a better understanding of the Native North American's own perceptions of and attitudes towards reality and human life. The course deals with the native cultures prior to the spread of Western domination and with several major post-contact cultural developments, aspects of Indian-White relations, and contemporary problems (including those of Michigan Indians). Required reading includes several ethnographic studies, a biography of a Native American man or woman, and some articles from a course pack. Student evaluation is based on two essay-type exams and a short research paper developed by the student in consultation with the instructor and/or the teaching assistant. While lectures and one weekly section conducted by the teaching assistant are the major methods of instruction, films, presentations by guest lecturers, and demonstrations of artifacts from the Museum of Anthropology play an important role in the course. (Kan)

323. Pacific Islands Anthropology. (3). (SS).

This course introduces the anthropological literature for the Pacific area, exclusive of New Guinea and Australia. Lectures will summarize geology; geography; ecology; prehistory; contact history; contemporary politics and economics; demography; social, political and economic organizations; cultural and sub-cultural areas (including language). Detailed descriptions of social institutions and aspects of culture will be analyzed with respect to their organizing principles and variability. Three 8-10 page essays (based on a close reading of several modern monographs) will be required. Student presentations and discussion also required. (Carroll)

402. Chinese Society and Cultures. Anthro. 101 or 222, or any China course. (3). (SS).

This course deals with late traditional and contemporary China, with an emphasis on the peasantry. The focus is on continuities and changes over the past 200 years. The first part of the course deals with regional and cultural variations, including the cultures of some of China's minority peoples, and with the socio-economic organizations of traditional China. The next segment deals with popular interpretations and expressions of China's major religions, folk art and literature, and forms of rebellion. In the last segment we discuss the reorganization of Chinese society since 1949, dealing with contemporary family and community organization, social stratification, the successes and failures of different forms of "collectivization," and some of the current social problems in the Peoples Republic of China. This is a lecture course with in-class discussion, open to students with sophomore standing or above. The readings are drawn mainly from the ethnological/cultural anthropology literature, supplemented with materials from the fields of literature, sociology, history and economics. They are drawn from Western and Chinese scholarship with translations of Chinese primary sources provided in a course pack. There is a midterm (essay) and a final exam (essay). Undergraduates have the choice of writing two short critical papers or a longer research paper on a topic of their choosing. Graduate students are expected to write a research paper or a review of a significant segment of the scholarly literature on Chinese society and culture. (Diamond)

403(503). Japanese Society and Culture. Anthro. 101, 222, or any Japan course. (4). (SS).

An examination of cultural patterns that distinguish Japan from its counterparts among the industrial nations of the West. Topics include: the family, patterns of education and socialization, the importance of groups and group membership, the place of the individual in society, and concepts of religion, morality, and aesthetics. (Edwards)

405. Peoples and Cultures of India. Anthro. 101 or 222. (3). (SS).

This course will present material on South Asian society and culture, using both an historical inquiry into the colonial origins and context of ethnology in India and a theoretical analysis of the role of "caste" in comparative sociology to threaten our reading of representative and important South Asian ethnographies. We will focus on the development of the concepts of "caste" and "tribe"; on the relation of Orientalism to ethnology in India; and on the changing genres of ethnography in India. We will also look at material on folk and classical Hinduism, exchange relations and social structure, landholding and political power, kinship and marriage, and recent social change both in the countryside and urban centers. Finally, we will consider the history of caste as an idea, as an institution, and as a trope for India. (Dirks)

414/CAAS 444. Introduction to Caribbean Societies and Cultures I. Junior standing. (3). (SS).

This course provides an introduction to the peoples and cultures of the Caribbean. Topics covered include: the historical origins of the social structure and social organization of contemporary Caribbean states; family and kinship; religion, race, class, ethnicity and national identity; Caribbean immigration; politics and policies of socioeconomic change. The course is open to both anthropology concentrators and non-concentrators. Films and videos on the Caribbean will be shown when available. Requirements: FOUR 3-5 page typewritten papers, which ask students to synthesize READING and LECTURE materials; participation in CLASS discussions; regular class attendance. (Owusu)

419/Religion 419. Religion and Society in Native North America. One course in cultural anthropology or permission of instructor. (3). (SS).

The course explores the role of religion in the lives of Native North Americans, past and present. Several North American Indian cultures and/or culture areas are explored in depth so as to answer the following question: does "religion" constitute a separate domain or is it thoroughly integrated with subsistence activities, sociopolitical organization, etc. Native beliefs about the world, human nature, time and space, relationship between mankind and other inhabitants of the universe; theories of illness and healing rituals; ideas about and ways of acquiring superhuman power; the role of the sacred in defining, maintaining, and legitimizing the sociopolitical order are among the various topics discussed. The emphasis in the course is on continuity and change in American Indian religions, hence, several new religious movements and cults that emerged in response to European conquest and colonization (e.g., the Ghost Dance) are also discussed. The course concludes with a discussion of the contemporary Indian people's reinterpretation of their spiritual heritage and their struggle to construct new religious forms which both reflect and help them cope with their present experience. The course is designed for both undergraduates and graduates interested in the diverse religious traditions of Native North America and the ways in which anthropologists and other scholars have studied them. Method of instruction combines lectures and seminar-type discussions, with the latter predominating. Films, slides, and tape recordings are also used. Student evaluation is based primarily on a research paper developed in consultation with the instructor, as well as active participation in discussion and a short take home essay. Volunteers will be asked to present the result of their research during the last weeks of the term. Prerequisites: one course in cultural anthropology or permission of instructor. (Kan)


330. Culture, Thought, and Meaning. (4). (HU).

This course is offered as an upper-division introduction to anthropology for students who have not had other anthropology courses, and as an introduction specifically to Cultural Analysis for students who have had some (other sorts of) anthropology. It is recommended for concentrators and non-concentrators at all levels; graduate credit can be arranged for graduate students. The course is concerned with the individual, and with culture as a system of measuring meanings. Attention will be focused both on exotic cultures and our own, in an effort to develop a truly cross-cultural perspective on how different people construe "reality." Especially emphasized will be the role of communication, and of "mind" (including cultural ontologies, epistemologies, logics, aesthetics, and rhetorics). There are no prerequisites. Lectures will focus on: 1) the analysis of ethnographic data; 2) how to read ethnographic reports critically; 3) the criteria for constructing ethnographic reports. Readings will (mostly) be about other cultures. Ample opportunity will be devoted to discussion of the lecture material and the readings. Several sessions will also be devoted to the techniques of writing short essays, and special guidance will be given to those who wish to improve their writing techniques. Grades will be based on six short papers (six pages each). (Carroll)

Ethnology-Topical Courses

352/RC Soc. Sci. 352. Social Perspectives: Cross-Cultural Study of Women. One social science course or permission of instructor. (4). (SS).

See RC Social Science 352. (Larimore)

353/CAAS 427/Women's Studies 427. African Women. (3). (SS).

See Afroamerican and African Studies 427. (Clark)

431. American Kinship. Junior standing. (3). (SS).

The notion of 'the person' in Euroamerican culture, and its prime constituents: 'adults'/'children'; 'male'/'female; etc. The "life-cycle" (as culturally construed) from conception to death. The ideology of 'kin ties' where they derive from; what they are supposed to entail. 'The family' (as a cultural construct), nuclear and extended; 'distant kin'. Cultural dimensions of the 'household'. Living arrangements. Cultural aspects of the physical apportionment of living (and working) space. 'Motherhood'/ 'Fatherhood', 'childhood and 'adolescence'. Adoption. Siblingship. Marriage, courtship, sex. Kinship as an autonomous cultural (i.e., symbolic) domain (independent, to a large extent , of non-kinship considerations, such as economics). Kinship as an "idiom" in which other matters are expressed. Constants and variables in American kinship historically. Constants and variables in American kinship geographically, by ethnic group, and by class. Other sorts of relationships that are like kin relationships: 'friendship', etc. Conclusion: what a specifically anthropological approach can add to other sorts of studies of kinship. Preliminary oral reports and final written reports (every three weeks about 8-10 pages of well-edited essay each time) will constitute the basis for assigning final grades. (Carroll)

454. Symbolic Anthropology. Anthro. 101, 330, or junior standing. (3). (SS).

How do symbolic forms communicate and constitute meaning in other cultures? How have ethnographers gone about examining the languages, rituals, and cosmologies of other societies as symbolic systems? Central to our inquiry will be the claim for the autonomy of the symbolic realm that has come out of structuralist linguistics: how this challenges attempts to ground symbolism in other domains (material, social, psychological); how it is challenged in turn by arguments for seeing symbol systems as partly (or relatively) constrained ("motivated"). Course materials focus on ethnographic studies of non-Western societies which illustrate these theoretical perspectives. Format: lectures and discussions. Student evaluation is based on several short papers. (Edwards)

458. Topics in Cultural Anthropology. Permission of instructor. (3). (SS). May be repeated once for a total of 6 credits.

SECTION OO1. SHAMANISM AND TRAGEDY. The aim of this course is to try and learn from shamanic artistry, most especially from the way such art counters sorcery, aims at changing social relationships, contains unusual aesthetic forms, connects with wildness, and, last but not least, the way this art has not only often been embedded in tragic colonial (and personal) histories, but now exists in a neo-colonial world all too self-conscious as to "shamanism." Just as Brecht learnt from the art of Chinese acting, and Artaud from Balinese theatre, so I want to rub Western notions of Tragedy against what we know of shamanism, bearing in mind that whatever shamanism is, it is also a cultural construct of the West in which powerful mythic features of Otherness and of the Originary are imploded. Basing myself to some extent on my own work (SHAMANISM, COLONIALISM, AND THE WILD MAN: A STUDY IN TERROR AND HEALING), I wish to analyse the magical effects of this implosion by contrasting radical theories of Tragedy with the conventions of Aristotelian poetics, narrative flow and catharsis, as found in conventional theories of both Tragedy and of ritual. Here I am interested in (1) shamanic use of montage and decentering of narrative, which I wish to compare with attempts to create a Marxist aesthetic (Brecht, Benjamin) and Dada, as well as with certain post-modernisms (see Huyssen in the course pack), and in (2) an approach which instead of exclusively or mainly focusing on techniques (drumming, trance, etc.) and universals, asks what are the ways by which shamanic art tries to extract curative magic from local history, as such history is embedded in the often tragic consequences of modern world history. (Taussig)

SECTION 002. CONFRONTING THE PRIMATIVE: NARRATIVES, NOVELS, AND ETHNOGRAPHIES. This course explores the ways in which American and European writers have thought about and portrayed the societies and cultures of the rest of the world. Emphasis is on the 19th and 20th centuries, tracing parallels, divergences and cross-fertilizations between travel narratives, fictional works and ethnographic studies, and their linkage to social, political and religious ideas of their times. It is an attempt to understand our understandings of "other cultures," whether presented through popular writing or through the conventions of an academic discipline, and the uses that these literary forms have been put to either as justification of or critical self-reflection on Euro-American society and culture. Readings for the course will include a selection of "classic monographs" of the past hundred years, segments of travel narratives and literary/journalistic reportage, novels and short stories, and presentations of life-histories. The course will be conducted as a proseminar, with some lectures, but with the majority of class hours given to class discussion and presentation of short critical papers on the works under discussion on a rotational basis among members of the class. Students are also required to write a longer paper (20-30 pages) on readings and a topic of their choice. There are no exams. Some background in cultural anthropology, or literature or Area Studies is strongly recommended. (Diamond)


472/Ling. 409. Language and Culture. (3). (HU).

This course explores the relationship between language and culture as a set of mutually reinforcing constraints which form different types of coherence systems. Language is dealt with both as a set of grammatical forces as well as semantic imperatives which must be related to culture as a system of social principles, as webs of meaning, and as a framework of knowledge and philosophy. The realm of thought is analyzed as a human condition which produces creative and constrictive conditions on language and culture. A few short paperback volumes are required in addition to articles placed on undergraduate reserves. Course requirements are a midterm and a final examination.

474/Linguistics 410. Nonstandard English. (3). (SS).

See Linguistics 410. (Lippi)

576. Introduction to Linguistic Anthropology. Two courses in anthropology or biology or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

This course serves as an introduction to language and linguistics for anthropologists. It provides the basic tools necessary for discussing and working with linguistic systems and introduces theoretical models both as tools for working with data and as models of cultural activity. The nature of language as a sign activity, the status of linguistic representations, models of linguistic change and subgrouping, and semiotic and biological bases of linguistic universals are explored. (Mannheim)


480. Eastern Asian Prehistory. Anthro. 101, 282, or junior standing. (3). (SS).

This course is designed as a general survey of the present state of knowledge concerning the development of societies and cultures in East and Southeast Asia. The geographical area covered includes China, Japan, Korea, mainland and insular Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Burma, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Taiwan). The time period under consideration stretches from the first documented appearance of human ancestors in the region nearly 2 million years ago to the development of historical civilizations and state societies. The latter point of time varies widely, from the second millennium B.C. in China to the mid-second millennium A.D. in the Philippines. The course is an anthropology course and uses anthropological concepts and methods. Some background in anthropology, at least Anthropology 101, will therefore be very useful, although it is not required. Since the course will be of some use to students interested in the Far East but concentrating in a variety of fields (e.g., Art History, Asian Studies, History), I will try to present materials in such a way that they will be intelligible to students without any significant anthropological background. The course entails a midterm exam, a final exam, and a paper. Three textbooks (one each for China, Japan, and Southeast Asia) are recommended. (Hutterer)

485. Prehistory of Africa. Anthro. 101, 282, or junior standing. (3). (SS).

This course explores the development of cultures in Subsaharan Africa from the first emergence of human-like bipeds more than 5 million years ago to the rise of states and urban centers during the Iron Age. The requirements of the course include a midterm examination (take home) and either an in-class final exam or a research paper. Lecture. (Speth, Wright)

Museum, Reading, and Research Courses

496. Museum Techniques in Anthropology. Permission of instructor. (1-3). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT). May be repeated for credit for a total of 6 credits for Anthro 496 and 497.

The goal of this course is the introduction of museum collection management and exhibition. It will acquaint students with the ethics of collecting anthropological artifacts and archaeological objects, their proper storage, conservation, computer cataloging, procedures for lending and borrowing, and methods for exhibiting the collection. The course serves as an introduction to museum employment as a career and to general knowledge about the "behind the scene" operations in a museum. Lectures will be complimented by tours to laboratories, storage areas, and exhibits. Students will write short critiques of museum activities and complete a final examination. No prerequisites are required. (Ford)

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