Offerings | Anthropology/Sociology
Division of Social Studies
Endre Nyerges (chair), Alysia
Fischer, Charles Pace, Phyllis Passariello, William Weston; students:
Berea Ernst, Kasey Joyner, Anne Ledford, Lidija Mustafic
The Anthropology and
Sociology Program explores the common intellectual foundations of these
disciplines as well as noting where their emphases diverge. Certain core
questions are at the base of this interdisciplinary program: What makes
us human? How are we different from other creatures? What is the range of
human diversity and why is it important? Can we make value distinctions
between societies, and how can we understand and assess our own? Anthropology
and sociology deal with philosophical concepts as well as with particular
cultural details to bridge the gap between life sciences and humanities.
The diversity of courses in this interdisciplinary program provides a unifying
framework for understanding the totality of the human condition and experience.
ANT 110, 120;
SOC 110, 120
Requirements for the Major
ANT 110 and SOC 110;
ANT 120 or SOC 120;
ANT 301/SOC 301 or ANT 302/SOC 302;
ANT 304 or SOC 303;
ANT 500/SOC 500;
Four additional anthropology or sociology
courses (at least three numbered 300 or above).
Requirements for the Anthropology Minor
ANT 110 and 120;
ANT 301 or 302;
Three additional anthropology courses numbered 300 or above.
Requirements for the Sociology Minor
SOC 301 or 302;
Four additional sociology courses, at least three of which must be numbered
300 or above.
(MAT 311 may substitute for one of the sociology courses above 300.)
ANT 105 Visual Anthropology
An exploration of how cultural information is visually "coded"
in cultural images, including such questions as: How is cultural information
coded (and decoded) in both mainstream and ethnographic film? How can visual
anthropology be used as a tool for ethnographic research? What effect do
such production values as music, camera angle, lighting, sound effects,
and lens focal length have upon our understanding and perception of film
cultural content? What is the relationship between media representation
and cultural reality? Whose reality? What reality?
ANT 110 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
An introduction to the perspectives and methods of cultural anthropology.
Topics covered include the nature of culture; the relation of culture to
language; the importance of the environment for human societies; and a cross-cultural
examination of family structure, social organization, political and economic
systems, religion, arts and folklore, and the impact of social and cultural
ANT 120 Introduction to Physical Anthropology and Archaeology
An introduction to major topics in physical anthropology and archaeology,
including studies of human biological and cultural evolution, conflicting
theories over the genetic and cultural bases of human behavior, history
and methodology of archaeology, and on-going debates and new directions
in these areas of anthropology.
ANT 130 Introduction to Archaeology
An examination of the basic theory and concepts of archaeological inquiry,
including a comprehensive introduction to archaeology and the profession
of the archaeologist. Field methods are considered, as case studies are
thoroughly examined. The course contains a weekly technology component and
students are expected to utilize a variety of resources available via the
Internet, as well as multi-media CD-ROM's. (Formerly offered as ANT 13.)
ANT 301/SOC 301 Qualitative Field Methods
An introduction to the research process. Students are prepared to conduct
research, including fieldwork, to evaluate and present research in a scholarly
manner, and to critically evaluate the research of others. Basic techniques
such as participant-observation, interviewing, and the use of documents
are practiced in the field and evaluated. Prerequisite: ANT 11 or SOC 11.
ANT 302/SOC 302 Classics of Ethnography
An examination of classic anthropological field studies, focusing on the
works and lives of key figures in the field. Course readings show how ethnographic
data are gathered and how these findings are analyzed and interpreted. In
this course, the interpretive search for meaning confronts the scientific
quest for truth. Prerequisite: ANT 110 or SOC 110. (Formerly offered as
ANT 15 Studies of Culture.)
ANT 304 History of Anthropological Thought
A critical analysis of the history of anthropological theory and method,
tracing the development of this Western discipline through its various understandings
of humankind in general, and of non-Western cultures in particular. Prerequisite:
ANT 11 or SOC 11 or permission of the instructor.
ANT 310 Language and Culture
This ethnolinguistic course examines the relationship between speakers
communicative choices (language, dialect, formality, style) and the social
groups to which they claim membership (based on region, gender, age, social
class). Topics include: the ethnography of communication, language and power,
universals and cross-cultural differences in communicative strategies, and
the nature and consequences of language variation. The linguists methods
of studying language and working with language data are introduced, and
field work among regional speakers of English as well as local non-English-speaking
populations are conducted as research projects. Prerequisite: junior standing
or permission of the instructor. (Formerly offered as ANT 25/45.)
ANT 320 The Anthropology of Tourism
The course includes an examination of the cultural, structural, and psychological
aspects of the phenomenon of tourism, concentrating on its history, meaning,
and growth cross-culturally, and its relationships to other types of recreation,
pilgrimages, lifestyles, and world views. Other concerns are the social,
cultural, ecological, and economic impacts of tourism on host communities
and consideration in general of the relationships between tourism and acculturation.
Prerequisite: ANT 110 or SOC 110 or permission of the instructor.
ANT 330 Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective
A comparative, historical, and cross-cultural survey of the concept of gender.
Biological, historical, and cultural influences as well as popular images
and stereotypes affecting womens and mens lives are considered.
Controversial issues of gender and equality and alternative gender roles
are examined from several points of view. Prerequisite: ANT 110 or SOC 110
or permission of the instructor.
ANT 340 Introduction to Folklore
A cross-cultural survey of the major forms of folklore and a consideration
of the methodological and theoretical approaches used by anthropologists
and folklorists in the study of folklore. Major genres of folklore are identified,
methods for collecting folklore are discussed and analyzed, and folklore
theory of the 19th and 20th centuries is identified and assessed. The place
of folklore in the study of anthropology is explored. Prerequisite: ANT
110 or SOC 110 or permission of the instructor.
ANT 350 Ecological Anthropology
A study of interrelationships between populations, organization, environment,
technology, and symbols. Established materialist paradigms in anthropology
are critiqued and evaluated. New approaches to understanding issues of environmental
degradation, world hunger, and Third World development and change are addressed,
including historical ecology, political ecology, the ecology of practice,
and remote sensing analysis. Prerequisite: ANT 110 or SOC 110 or permission
of the instructor.
ANT 360 GIS and the Environment
An introduction to the basic concepts and applications of Geographic Information
Systems (GIS) as used in environmental studies. Students in the course receive
hands-on training in the use of ArcView, the industry-standard GIS software,
and the use of Global Positioning System (GPS) devices. Students also learn
how to integrate data into GIS from sources such as maps, aerial photographs,
and Landsat satellite images.
ANT 370/SOC 370 Ritual Theory
A cross-cultural look at ritual behavior as theory and process. The course
explores the role of ritual as a form of human communication. It examines
such issues as the social, cultural, political, and expressive role of ritual
in human society, and the relationship between ritual action and mythic
content. Finally, the course examines how one can analyze ritual process
from a structural, functional, performative, and semiotic perspective. Prerequisite:
Ant 110 or SOC 110.
ANT 380 Archaeology: Theory and Practice
This course integrates the concepts of both research and cultural resource
management, and prehistoric and historic archaeology. Utilizing classroom
and field experience, new technologies and traditional methods of archaeological
site excavation and interpretation are presented. Prerequisite: ANT 120.
ANT 391 Native Peoples of North America
An introductory cultural survey of the native peoples of North America from
their arrival in the New World to the present. Focus is on several selected
native groups of the United States and Canada, exploring the complexity
and diversity of their cultures, and their relationships with the "white"
culture. Particular concerns are survival, change, identity, perceptions
of self and others, and the Native American cultures of today. Prerequisite:
ANT 110 or SOC 110 or permission of the instructor.
ANT 392 Peoples of South America
A cultural survey of the native peoples of South America, focusing on the
ethnology and ethnohistory of specific cultural groups as well as the impact
of the so-called conquest. General cultural patterns as well as specific
cultural differences are explored. Theoretical, cross-cultural, and interdisciplinary
issues are raised, using a variety of primary and other sources. Prerequisite:
ANT 110 or SOC 110 or permission of the instructor.
ANT 393 The Maya
An ethnohistoric, archaeological, and contemporary survey of Mayan culture.
Emphasis is on the prehistory and history of the Maya, the traditional culture
of the Maya including intensive examination of Mayan art and architecture,
and the vital Mayan culture present in Mesoamerica today. Prerequisite:
ANT 110 and 120.
ANT 394 Peoples of the Middle East and North Africa
A cultural survey of the native peoples of the Middle East and North Africa,
focusing on the ethnology and ethnohistory of specific cultural groups as
well as the important influence, sometimes unifying, sometimes divisive,
of Islam on the area. General cultural patterns as well as specific cultural
differences are explored. Theoretical, cross-cultural, and interdisciplinary
issues are raised using a variety of sources. Prerequisite: ANT 110 or SOC
110 or permission of the instructor.
ANT 395 Peoples of Sub-Saharan Africa
An introduction to the history, ethnography, and ecology of the diverse
cultures and societies of sub-Saharan Africa. The course begins with a survey
of the geography, prehistory, and history of the continent, and proceeds
to an examination of the social and economic organization of small-scale
African societies, a discussion of African thought and religion, and a discussion
of gender issues and social change. Finally, the course focuses on experiences
of ethnographers as they encounter rural African society.
Special Topic Courses Offered 2001-2002
ANT 451 Contemporary Maya Cultures
An introduction to the cultures of Maya peoples in Mexico and Central
America. Provides a basic knowledge of the historic and contemporary Maya
indigenous people on site in Latin America. Interacting in the classroom
with a Maya storyteller provides an opportunity for understanding the subversive
potential of oral tradition and the role that language plays in a world
of multiple identities. Visiting a pueblo and interacting with Maya indigenous
people allow students to explore the dialogical nature of speaking: we actually
expect to hear our own answers echoed by the others. Offered in Mexico.
ANT 500/SOC 500 Advanced Seminar
A seminar study of important works in anthropology and sociology. Topics
change with the instructor; this course may be repeated. Prerequisite: Major
or minor in anthropology/sociology and 15 hours of anthropology/sociology
courses, or permission of the program.
SOC 103 Introduction to Family Life
An introduction to marriage and family life, focusing on the contemporary
SOC 104 American Denominational Religion
A study of how the nations religious experience, and the students
own religious experience (or lack of experience), have been shaped by denominationalism.
A review of American religious history and visits with denominational leaders
SOC 110 Introduction to Sociology
A survey of sociological concerns, including explorations of social solidarity
and social conflict at the macro and micro levels, through classic texts
and field research.
SOC 120 Social Problems
An examination of how social problems are constructed by society, taking
examples from U.S. history, including abolition, alcohol, and abortion.
SOC 301 Field Methods
(See ANT 301.)
SOC 302 Classics of Ethnography
(See ANT 302.)
SOC 303 Sociological Theory
An examination of the major theoretical traditions and some classical theoretical
texts of sociology. Prerequisite: SOC 110 or ANT 110 or permission of the
SOC 310 Sociology of Family Life
A study of the structures and functions of family life as they have changed
over time and varied from culture to culture. Special attention is given
to the role of marriage and of gender relations in family life. Prerequisite:
SOC 110 or ANT 110 or permission of the instructor.
SOC 320 Race and Ethnicity
A study of the concept of "race" and the impact of that concept
on the relations of ethnic groups. Prerequisite: SOC 110 or ANT 110 or permission
of the instructor.
SOC 330 African-American Society
An examination of the cultural characteristics and social structural position
of the African-American ethnic group, especially as shaped by class and
race. Prerequisite: SOC 110 or ANT 110 or permission of the instructor.
SOC 340 Sociology of Religion
A study of the major theoretical approaches to religion used in sociology.
Prerequisite: SOC 110 or ANT 110 or REL 110 or REL 120 or permission of
the instructor. (Also listed as REL 349.)
SOC 360 Social Psychology
A study of individuals in their social and cultural settings. Emphasis is
placed on empirical research into the social factors involved in perceptual-cognitive
processes, attitude organization and change, intergroup relations, group
productivity, the socializing process, and the effects of culture on personality.
Students perform laboratory and field experiments designed to investigate
basic processes of social psychology. Prerequisite: PSY 110 or senior standing
and permission of the instructor. PSY 210 and 220 are recommended. (Also
listed as PSY 360.)
SOC 370 Ritual Theory
(See ANT 370.)
Special Topic Courses Offered 2001-2002
SOC 250 Defining the South
Led by Humana Visiting Scholar John Shelton Reed, this course examines
persistent cultural differences between Southerners and other Americans.
Reed, who is Kenan Professor Emeritus of Sociology at UNC-Chapel Hill and
best-selling author of over a dozen books about the South, is noted both
for his humor and his insights about southern institutions. His course will
explore questions of regional identity and consciousness, regional stereotypes,
representations of Southerners in the mass media, localism, attitudes toward
violence, and religious behavior and belief. Finally, the course will look
briefly at two areas of dramatic cultural convergence during the past half
century: black-white relations and voting behavior. Morning lectures will
be supplemented by small-group afternoon discussions. (Given anticipated
demand for this course, sophomores are encouraged to consider alternates).
SOC 251 Class Culture
A study of social stratification, emphasizing the qualitative differences
among the several socio-economic status groups. Prerequisite: SOC 110 or
ANT 110 or permission of the instructor. Offered in London.
SOC 500 Advanced Seminar
(See ANT 500.)