An introduction to the nature of culture and its relationship to language, economics, politics, kinship and other institutions in diverse cultures. The course provides an overview of the theories, methods and ethical responsibilities involved in the study of diverse cultural systems, as well as practice in ethnographic observation and writing.
Includes discussions of the genetic and ecological basis of human biological differences. Places this conversation a context of explaining the nature and implications of these differences.
Anthropological and historical perspectives on peoples and cultures of Latin America and the Caribbean through such themes as colonialism, nationalism, ethnicity, development, aesthetic traditions, gender, religion, and urban and rural resistance movements.
Introductory course emphasizing cultural diversity of sub-Saharan African societies. Basic anthropological concepts are used in analyzing African economics, political systems, marriage patterns and family organization, religious beliefs, and the impacts of colonialism and post-colonial development practices.
A study of the nature of Indian societies occupying different environmental areas of North America at the time of earliest historic contact. Indian groups such as Shawnee, Mandan, Nuunamiut, Natchez, Creek, Iroquois and Sioux will be considered.
Discusses the socio-cultural mechanisms of establishing human identity/personality and diverse cultural values within a society and the mechanisms that facilitate change in them over time. Topic areas of egocentrism and ethnocentrism are discussed
This course examines the social construction of race and ethnicity around the world and how they influence social processes, institutions, change and ideology. The course will include discussions concerning the intersection of race and ethnicity with other aspects of social inequality such as class, gender, sexuality and nationality in contemporary society.
Examination of theories of sex role development, the roles of men and women in society and gender as a social construction.
Examines the historical and cultural construction of "race" in Western thought. Themes include the origins of racial thinking, the slave trade, race and religion, race and science, the ways race is implicated in colonialism and nationalism, and the relationship between race and other social qualities, including gender, class, sexuality and ethnicity.
By examining how peoples’ assumptions about the world cumulatively shape their interpretations of "reality," Individual and Society encourages students to think reflexively and critically about important issues that face different individuals across various social, historical, and situational contexts. It also aims to provide students with a deeper understanding of how social and cultural differences (e.g., race, class, gender, sexuality etc.) impact individuals’ constructions of reality, interactions with others, and the maintenance of -- and challenges to -- normative cultural patterns and social order.
Examines the development of Southwestern societies from early hunter-gatherers to the Native American communities of today. Major issues of anthropological interest, such as the adoption of agriculture, the development of village life, migration and abandonment, the spread of religious "cults," the extent of Mesoamerican influence, and the effects of the Spanish conquest are explored.
Discusses the nature of religion in shaping human values, customs, and culture. Comparative in that it discusses patterns of religion that exist within differing levels of cultural development and the manner in which these belief systems shape human place and law, etc.
Examines the experiences of Latin American migrants to the United States. It stresses the cultural expression of those experiences, globalization and its effects on local communities in Latin America, the U.S. responses to migration and migrants, the history of immigration and nativist anti-immigrant movements.
This course examines sociological theory and research on sexual behaviors, identities, cultures and social movements, investigating how sexuality is shaped by society and its social institutions. In addition, the course examines how sociological research on sexuality is conducted, how society shapes the sociological study of sexuality, the unique ethical concerns and methodological challenges in researching sexuality, and the place of sociology in shaping public discourse and social policy on relevant social issues.
Highlights lived experiences of differently situated social actors in the US.
Contemporary American Culture provides students with an understanding of how culture involves processes of meaning-making through which social actors establish, maintain, and challenge mental frameworks and belief systems. The course thus considers various media and cultural genres to be arenas for identity construction and playing out social and cultural differences. The course critically examines how and why such differences (e.g., race, class, gender, sexuality, religion, and age) influence the production, interpretation, and reception of culture.
Examines the ways in which gender is constructed and negotiated in various historical and social contexts.
An examination of modern China's social, cultural and political structure from the 17th century to the present. Emphasis is placed on local level systems (town, village, lineage, family) and the roles they have played in China's transition from an agricultural to an industrial society.
Assists students in learning to deploy the intellectual resources of critical sociological perspectives to examine contemporary debates surrounding pivotal social issues and areas of life involving power, class, race, gender, religion, multiculturalism, consumerism, alienation, technology, education, and the family.
Employs a cultural studies lens that highlights the constitutive roles played by various social formations, forms of human labor, and class.