Sewanee: The University of the South

Anthropology Courses

ANTH 104 Introductory Cultural Anthropology

This introduction to the methods and concepts of cultural anthropology emphasizes how action, thought, and belief combine to form coherent cultural patterns. The intensive study of a few cultures is set within the larger perspective of sociocultural evolution and the anthropological sub-fields of political, psychological and economic anthropology, kinship, religion, and linguistics. (Credit, full course.) Murdock, Ray

ANTH 106 Introductory Physical Anthropology and Archaeology

An introduction to the processes of human and cultural evolution. Physical anthropology focuses on hominid evolution, genetic processes, primatology, and physiological characteristics of modern human populations. Archaeology traces cultural evolution from foraging societies to the great civilizations of ancient times. Both course segments include a review of pertinent methods and theories. This course is not open for credit to students who have received credit for Anth 107. (Credit, full course.) Sherwood

ANTH 107 Human Evolution and Variation

A critical anthropological perspective on evolutionary thought, human evolutionary history, and contemporary human variation. Key issues explored include the cultural context of evolutionary science, competing scientific theories of modern human emergence, the relevance of primate studies for human evolutionary history, and a comparison of cultural and biological notions of human race, sex, and intellectual capacity. The course addresses current debates surrounding the cultural and biological forces involved in human evolution and variation. This course is not open for credit to students who have received credit for Anth 106. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 108 Introductory Anthropological Linguistics

An introduction to the origin of language, principles of general linguistics, historical and comparative linguistics, pidgin and Creole languages, and sociolinguistics. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 109 World Prehistory

An introduction to world prehistory, this course begins by examining human origins in Africa and the spread of hominid populations across Africa, Asia, and Europe and considers the origins and spread of agriculture and complex societies, beginning with those in Mesopotamia, Egypt, the Indus Valley, and China. Course topics also explore transitions from tribal societies to chiefdoms and proto-states in pre-Roman Europe. The course concludes by examining the varied paths to state-level societies in North America, Andean South America and Mesoamerica. Not open for credit to students who have completed Anth 202. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 180 Archaeology of Britain

An examination of how archaeologists attempt to make sense of British prehistory. Beginning with the Mesolithic Period around 9500 B.C., the course further considers the origins of agriculture in Britain, around 4000 B.C., and the related ceremonial landscapes and burial and henge monuments of the Neolithic Period. The second portion of the course deals with the Bronze and Iron Ages through the types of subsistence and settlement strategies early Britons employed and archaeological evidence for social hierarchy, religious practices, warfare, and trade. The course concludes with the examination of the development of oppida, the use of coinage, the Roman invasion, and the Picts of Scotland. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 201 Global Problems: Anthropology and Contemporary Issues

This course examines such global issues as overpopulation, poverty, hunger, and violence. It combines a broad, interdisciplinary approach with examination of specific anthropological case studies of NGOs (non-governmental organizations) in South Asia (Bangladesh) and Southeast Asia (Cambodia), and an analysis of the effects of international development agencies at the local level. Using culture as a unifying concept, the course addresses economic, political, ecological and ideological issues. (Credit, half course.) Staff

ANTH 203 The Anthropology of Gender

A study of the varied ways cultures define gender. Using an evolutionary perspective, the course evaluates changing modes of subsistence, division of labor, and power structures as they pertain to cultural concepts of gender. Anthropological case studies help foster an understanding of the complex and interrelated aspects of gender as it actually affects individual human beings. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 205 International Development in Anthropological Perspective

This course offers critical perspectives on international development from an anthropological point of view. Familiarization with colonial and Cold War-era roots of development involve an historical approach. Case studies of specific international development projects — e.g., in Nepal, India, and post-Soviet countries — are considered from the perspectives of consultants and critics. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 222 Celtic Culture and Archaeology

Grounded in the anthropological perspective, this course explores ancient Celtic society through archaeology, ethnohistory, linguistics, and a focus on myth and religion. The study initially focuses on the people of the European Iron Age (800 B.C. to Roman Conquest). Further course components consider the continuity and influence of Celtic traditions though the Middle Ages to the present in areas least impacted by Roman rule (Ireland, Scotland, and parts of Wales), and the contemporary cultural phenomena known as Celtic Revivalism. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 290 Women in Cross-Cultural Perspective (Writing-Intensive) (also Women’s Studies)

A comparison of women’s experiences of family, work, religion, development, and war across diverse world regions to see how these can differ widely from one society to another. Anthropological writings and films are used to learn the concepts and perspectives necessary for the exploration of women’s similarities and differences. Discussion-centered learning and student research papers help involve students actively in the collective construction of knowledge about women’s lives around the world. This course cannot be taken for credit by any student who has earned credit for Anth 321. Prerequisite: Anth 104 or Wmst 100. (Credit, full course.) Murdock

ANTH 298 Ecological Anthropology

This course examines human-environmental relationships from the anthropological perspective. Consideration of theoretical approaches and practical applications are supplemented by archaeological, ethnographical and ethnohistorical case studies. The class considers various ecosystems and landscapes as palimpsests that reveal cultural "footprints" to the archaeologist and human choices to the ethnographer. The course explores how an understanding of both can greatly inform ecological studies and further new thinking about environmental policy. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 301 American Culture

An anthropological study of the United States uses community studies and topical essays to explore regional differences and national continuities. Symbols of self, home, community, and nation help interpret technology, the economy, leisure, popular culture, and social class. (Credit, full course.) O'Connor

ANTH 302 Southern Cultures (also American Studies)

An anthropological study of the southern United States emphasizes cultural continuity in both mountains and lowlands. The course uses community studies and literature to explore how indigenous interpretations fit within and react against national patterns and how locality, race, status, and gender act as social principles. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 303 The Anthropology of Europe

An anthropological examination of various cultural groups populating Europe today begins with a brief survey of European geography, prehistory, and history. The course evaluates a number of approaches — community studies, culture areas, national character studies, problem orientation — popular in European anthropology. Items of special interest include urban Europe, the European family, and women in Europe. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 304 Peoples and Cultures of Africa

A brief survey of geography, prehistory, and history followed by an evaluation of modern African cultural groups. Special topics considered include African women, labor migration, urbanization, associations, and elites. The overarching theme of the course is the differential effects of modernization on Africa. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 305 Cultures of Latin America

An introduction to Latin American cultural traditions as they relate to social identities, religious beliefs, economic practices, political systems, and natural environments. Students examine diverse regional contexts, including the Peruvian Andes, Central American urban centers, and the Brazilian Amazon. Legacies of inequality and political violence are contrasted with powerful social movements and creative cultural productions. Prerequisite: Anth 104 or instructor permission. (Credit, full course.) Murdock

ANTH 306 American Indians

A consideration of North American native peoples that involves origins and culture areas and the study of several specific groups as to history, economy, kinship, authority, and world view. Special attention is given to problems of conquest, reservation life, and U.S. government policy. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 307 Archaeology of Southeastern United States (also Environmental Studies)

The course introduces students to intermediate and advanced concepts of archaeology, prehistory, and early history using the Southeastern United States region, the Domain of the University of the South, and Moccasin Bend National Park as primary case studies. Lecture and discussion are supplemented by archaeological field and laboratory exercises, site visits, and guest lectures on special topics. The course has a laboratory component consisting of field and laboratory training and research, but this does not satisfy a laboratory science requirement. (Credit, full course.) Sherwood

ANTH 308 Myth, Ritual, and Meaning

The study of religion and meaning from the perspective of interpretive anthropology anchors the understanding of other cultural traditions in the study of Western religious and social forms. Special attention is given to magic, witchcraft, rites of passage, symbolic classification, and the evolution of religious forms. (Credit, full course.) O'Connor

ANTH 310 Topics in Archaeology and Historic Preservation

The seminar format involves student research and presentations on selected topics in American and Old World archaeology and historic preservation, instructor and guest lectures, and field trips. Topics, which vary with student experience and interest, include preservation archaeology, campus heritage preservation and management, historic preservation law, archaeological research design, the archaeology of early Spanish contact and trade, the archaeology of the Domain of the University of the South and other Tennessee locales, prehistoric lithic technology, cave and rock art, peopling of the New World, and Mississippian chiefdoms. Prerequisites: Anth 307 or 313. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 311 Gender and Class in Latin America (also Women’s Studies)

An examination of gender relations in diverse Latin American contexts. The history of anthropological scholarship on gender and class in the region, as well as contemporary theories of how gender, social class, race/ethnicity, and sexuality intertwine in human experience are key foci of the course. Detailed ethnographic case studies from Amerindian, Afro-Latino, and Mestizo cultural contexts help students apply broader theories to the analysis of gender relations as they are conceptualized by these different groups in Latin America. Prerequisite: Anth 104 or instructor permission. (Credit, full course.) Murdock

ANTH 312 Place, Ritual, and Belief

An upper division seminar designed to enhance students' research skills and engage students in thoughtful examination of the relationship between religious beliefs and practices, and natural environments. While including the major religious traditions, the course focuses on indigenous traditions at the band, tribe, chiefdom and state levels. The influence on human-environmental relationships of religious syncretism due to historical conquest or latter twentieth-century globalization is a special focus of the course as is the continuation and revival of outdoor ritual associated with pilgrimage and "saint cults." While avoiding deterministic and reductionistic explanations, the course invites students to look for correlations between subsistence strategy, environmental perspectives, and religious ritual in contemporary societies through ethnographic accounts and in historic/prehistoric societies through interpretations of the archaeological record. Prerequisite: Anth 104. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 313 Method and Theory in Archaeology (also Environmental Studies 313)

This course covers the history and current practice of archaeology from the methodological and theoretical perspectives. The basic class format involves lectures and discussion, but there is a laboratory component consisting of field and laboratory training and research. The course does not meet the requirement for a natural science course, with or without a laboratory. Site visits and guest lectures are part of the course. (Credit, full course.) Sherwood

ANTH 314 Colonialism and Culture

An introduction to social and cultural problems related to colonial processes. The course takes the position that the history of colonialism concerns us in the present and deserves ongoing reinterpretation. The course is designed to have students recognize that cultural practices and beliefs have been greatly informed by colonial processes of economic and political exploitation. How these relationships of power influenced, and continue to influence, cultures around the world is the key concern of this course. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 316 Archaeology of the Cumberland Plateau

This course examines the cultural history of the Cumberland Plateau through anthropological archaeology. After a brief consideration of the subject’s environmental context within one of the most biologically diverse regions on earth, the class investigates the Plateau’s rich prehistoric and historic archaeological record, which spans at least 12,000 years. In addition to ethnohistorical research, students actively engage in laboratory analysis of artifacts from the University Domain. Students also participate in site visits and field survey to explore both the Native American and European American record left as rock art, as well as that found in open habitation, cave, and rockshelter sites. (Credit, full course.) Sherwood

ANTH 317 The Anthropology of Development

An examination of the basic assumptions of mainstream modernization approaches. Students explore key aspects of “modernity” as this term has been understood in Western European thought and explore anthropologists' critiques of the exportation of these key aspects to other contexts. Detailed ethnographic case studies from diverse world regions, including Southeast Asia, Africa, and Latin America, help students to understand the impact of development thinking in Third World contexts. The professor's investigation of development in the war-torn context of Medellin, Colombia, is an ongoing source of material for reflection and debate. Prerequisite: Anth 104 or instructor permission. (Credit, full course.) Murdock

ANTH 318 North American Archaeology

This course reviews Pre-Columbian and Historic Era histories and social landscapes north of Mesoamerica. The course considers the timing and process of the initial peopling of the continent, food production, regional systems of exchange, development of social hierarchies, the rise and fall of chiefdoms, and colonial encounters between Europeans and Native Americans. (Credit, full course.) Sherwood

ANTH 319 Medical Anthropology

This anthropological investigation into medical topics with a cultural component (gerontology, substance abuse, nutrition, folk medicine, etc.) also examines the ways in which various cultural backgrounds impede or enhance the medical process. Issues such as disease and therapy are also examined in cross-cultural perspective. Not open to students who have completed Anth 206. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 320 Marriage, Family, and Kinship

A brief review of cross-cultural differences in kinship and marriage exchange, together with historical analysis of family development and marriage in England and America. The course ends by considering contemporary communal and alternative family styles. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 340 Families in Asia

A seminar on the continuities and changes in the role of the family in everyday life in Thailand, China, and Japan. Students study anthropological approaches to understanding kinship and read and view contextualized accounts of family life from several time periods. These accounts include ethnographies, novels, children's stories, religious and philosophical texts, folktales, films and Internet materials. To the extent possible, Chinese, Japanese, and/or Thai guests visit and share their family stories. (Credit, full course.) Wallace

ANTH 341 The Culture and History of Southeast Asia

A survey of the peoples and polities of Southeast Asia from prehistory to the present, stressing the cultural and historical continuities that unite this ethnically diverse region. Special consideration is given to urban rule, peasants, popular religion, and indigenous notions of power, gender, space, and time. (Credit, full course.) O'Connor

ANTH 350 Environmental Archaeology

The course explores past environments and the methods and evidence used to reconstruct them. Students acquire knowledge of the biological and geophysical systems in which particular cultures developed and changed. Emphasis is on the integration of geological, botanical, zoological, and archaeological data used to reconstruct Quaternary climates and environments. This course does not meet any general distribution requirement. (Credit, full course.) Sherwood

ANTH 355 The Anthropology of Business

This course engages students in an anthropological critique of the world of business. Shareholder capitalism is framed as both a world of material practice and a cosmological system that often eludes anthropological attention. The course aims to subject everyday notions of corporate common sense — corporate cultures and their leadership, design and innovation, stock markets and Wall Street, consumer behavior and consumer “confidence” — to sustained cultural analysis. As part of the sense-making process, it also addresses the work of “business anthropologists” working within corporate environments. This course is offered Easter semester 2011 only. (Credit, full course.)

ANTH 357 Field School in Archaeology (also Environmental Studies)

Conducted on the University Domain or other pre-eminent sites in Tennessee, The Sewanee Field School in Archaeology provides, in an intensive one-month period in the summer, training and experience in the process of conducting research on highly significant archaeological resources. While the fieldwork is the primary component, guest lectures, consulting, and field trips are provided by other Southeastern archaeologists. The course does not fulfill a laboratory science requirement. Prerequisite: Anth 307 or 313. (Credit, full course.) Sherwood

ANTH 366 Power and Violence: The Anthropology of Political Systems

Societies, whether simple or complex, must grapple with the use and abuse of power as well as with institutionalized and illegal acts of violence. This course focuses on these issues from an anthropological perspective, evaluating various theoretical models that have been developed to explore both power and violence. Students then deal with specific case studies of both simple and complex societies and their political systems, concluding with the United States. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 379 Ethnicities

The course is an examination of ethnic identities as cultural phenomena responding to social, economic, and political contexts and of identities as they articulate with subsistence, gender, religion, and caste or class. The course includes a cross-cultural survey and then a consideration of how ethnicity has been politicized and celebrated in America with the changing ideological models of assimilation, pluralism, and multiculturalism. The end of the course involves the study of creolized ethnicities in the American South. Prerequisite: Anth 104. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 387 Archaeology of Ireland

This class offers a survey of Irish pre-history from the earliest human settlements during the Mesolithic era, through the Neolithic and the Bronze and Iron Ages. The class then considers the material remains and cultural history of the sixth and seventh century “land of saints and scholars.” The course concludes with an examination of the archaeological records and cultural impacts of the Viking and Norman invasions. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 391 Junior Tutorial (Writing-Intensive)

The course involves students intensively reading and critiquing ethnographies. The course is taken in the second semester of the junior year and prepares students for writing an ethnography in Anth 401 (to be taken in the first semester of their senior year). Students write bi-weekly papers to enhance their critical thinking and strengthen their writing skills and normally choose a topic for Anth 401 near the completion of Junior Tutorial. Prerequisite: Anth 104. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 399 Anthropology of Education (Writing-Intensive) (Also Education 399)

An ethnographic research course in which students study the cultural contexts of schools and classrooms, families and youth cultures, hidden curricula and diversity. Students should expect to complete a semester-long, field research project in a nearby school. Not available for credit for students who have completed Educ/Anth 204. Prerequisite: one course in education or anthropology. (Credit, full course.) Wallace

ANTH 401 Anthropological Field Methods (Writing-Intensive)

Designed to train upper-division anthropology students to develop and carry out field research, the course first focuses on specific field methods used by anthropologists, ethnomethodology, network analysis, and statistical analysis. The second part of the course comprises a supervised field study where such methods can be tested. The last part of the course consists of data analysis and presentation. (Credit, full course.) Ray

ANTH 403 Social Theory

This is a second semester senior year course. The historical development of theory in American cultural anthropology beginning with positivism and classical evolutionary thinking through that of the neo-evolutionists. Consideration of different historical approaches is followed by exploration of cultural materialism, structuralism, Marxism, symbolic interpretation, and practice theory. (Credit, full course.) Murdock, Ray

ANTH 405 Honors Thesis

Student-initiated, forty-page research project in a student's area of specialty. Project undertaken in second semester of the senior year upon invitation. (Credit, full course.) Staff

ANTH 411 Research Seminar: Campus Life and Academic Culture (Also American Studies)

How do social and academic life interact on our campus? Using interviews, observation and other anthropological methods, the class explores how enduring academic traditions interact with changing collegiate experience and American culture. Specific foci include spatial culture; styles in studying, writing, class participation and academic engagement; and various discipline/indulgence scenarios like the “work hard, party hard” attitude. Those in the course also consider how students choose and adapt to majors, and how majors differ in work culture and value orientation. Working collaboratively, students contribute to ongoing research as well as generate individual research papers. (Credit, full course.) O'Connor

ANTH 412 Research Seminar: Diversity in Campus Life

Using ethnographic methods, this course researches how the national discourse on diversity plays out locally. Research explores personal, social, and institutional life, considers which differences matter and why, and studies how students experience diversity. Students cooperate to develop a shared database to use in writing individual papers. (Credit, full course.) O'Connor

ANTH 420 Sacred Landscapes and Folk Liturgies of Ireland

This cultural immersion course engages students in ethno-ecological fieldwork in rural Ireland. Students collaborate with local communities in documenting holy well sites and contemporary well-side practices. Students daily interview Irish consultants about folk liturgy, ethno-botany, and localized saint cults. Students also visit holy well sites and hike ancient pagan pilgrimage trails Christianized by Celtic Christian saints in the 5th–7th centuries. This is a summer offering. (Credit, half course.) Ray

ANTH 444 Independent Study

For selected advanced students pursuing a highly specialized area of interest. (Credit, variable.) Staff

Sewanee: The University of the South