Anthropology Electives

Please use the drop-down menu below to view the available anthropology electives.

Cultural Anthropology and Linguistics Courses

ANTH 2101: Cultural Anthropology
Fundamentals of ethnology, the comparative study of cultures, through a survey of anthropological community studies that represent a variety of world areas. Examines localized responses to universal human challenges such as meeting subsistence needs, resolving conflict, and coping with change.

ANTH 2301. Language and Culture
The role of language in human life. Comparative linguistic analysis. Interdependence of language and culture.

ANTH 2203: Human Geography
Description and world distribution of landscapes with (1) an analysis of past and present interplay among land forms, biota, and human activity; (2) an investigation into the manner in which culture is both restricted and stimulated by different habitats; and (3) a critique of the ecological problems resulting from modifying the landscape.

ANTH 3100. Urban Anthropology
The anthropological analysis of social and cultural institutions in contemporary, pluralistic, industrial based, urban societies.

ANTH 3312. Anthropology of Religion

Cross-cultural perspective on religion in human societies. Examples from Western and non-Western societies, rituals, healing, revitalization, role of religion.

ANTH 3330. Gender and Sexuality in Cross-Cultural Perspective
Examination of gender and sexuality in selected societies around the world, including contemporary American society. The effects of race, ethnicity, class and other forms of vulnerability as they intersect with gender roles and gender oppression.

ANTH 3350. Native Peoples of North America
Ethnology of native peoples of North America: culture areas, major cultural patterns, history, and present conditions. Importance of American Indian studies to anthropological theory.

ANTH 3360. People and Cultures of the Middle East
This course explores the variety of Middle Eastern cultures with reference to topics of central concern to cultural anthropology: environment, economics, social structure, political systems, religion, and culture change. Nomadic, rural agricultural, and urban groups are discussed.

ANTH 4316. Culture, Change and Development

Societal changes analyzed from holistic anthropological perspective.  Recognizing factors of long-term cultural change; modernization of the West and Third World countries; ecological and social problems related to development in the contemporary world.

ANTH 4320.  Culture, Law and Violence

Compares legal cultures around the globe with respect to the state's use of violence to intervene in violence.  Case studies include domestic violence, sexual assault and incarceration.  Focuses on theories and field methods for researching legal sites.

Physical Anthropology Courses

ANTH 1201. Introduction to Biological Anthropology
Explores the question of "What does it mean to be human" from a biological perspective, while developing scientific literacy and critical thinking skills. Introductory evolutionary theory, biocultural influences, and the role of sociocultural constructions of race in shaping human biology.  Survey of primary diversity, ecology, and behavior, with consideration of how non-human primate studies help us understand human evolution.  History of fossil hominins, including evidence for the development of key anatomical and behavioral hallmarks of human uniqueness.

ANTH 2201. Human Evolutionary Processes
Explores macroevolutionary and microevolutionary processes that shape human species.  Macroevolutionary processes include speciation and species concepts in primate evolution and hominin evolution.  We will consider primate models for interpretation of hominin and modern human behavioral biology.  Microevolutionary processes include a biocultural approach to considering the role of selection, mutation, gene flow, and genetic drift in human populations, and critical examination of cultural constructions of race and their impact on human biology.

ANTH 3153. Demography
Methods of analyzing population structure in small-scale societies, including studies of mortality and fertility patterns in bio-social and environmental contexts.

ANTH 4247. Bioarchaeology: Linking Bones and Behavior
Reconstruct patterns of human behavior from integrated biological data sets. Archaeological evidence drawn from human skeletal, plant, and faunal remains. Address questions of nutrition, pathology, occupation, and mortuary ritual.

ANTH 4251. Human Osteology and Odontology
The anatomy of the skeleton and teeth. Methods of analysis of biological dynamics of past populations including reconstruction of population structure and patterns of disease.

ANTH 4252. Origins of the Human Species
The biological past of the species sapiens. The biological legacy of the non-human primate past and the fossils which exemplify the evolutionary trends of our species.

ANTH 4253. Forensic Anthropology
Survey of the applications of human biology in criminalistics, including forensic applications of skeletal analysis, dermatoglyphics, DNA and hair. Studies methods of handling and analyzing these evidentiary materials, as well as the probative value each has in the criminal justice system.

ANTH 4255. Sex, Gender and Evolution
The biology of sex from a comparative perspective.  Considers the range of primate sexual behaviors, including reproductive anatomy, sexual behavior, and sexual selection, and their relevance understanding human sexuality.  Explores human sexuality in cross-cultural perspective, including deconstruction of sex/gender binaries, examining cross-cultural constructions of gender and sexuality, and the dangers of applying eugenicist thinking to human reproduction. 

Archaeology Courses

ANTH 2401. Archaeology and Prehistoric Culture

Fundamentals of archaeology, the study of past cultures through their material remains.  Focuses on methods used to identify, date, interpret, and conserve archaeological data.  Discussion of how theory, historical developments, contemporary issues and ethical concerns shape fieldwork, laboratory analyses and cultural reconstructions.  

ANTH 2501.  Science, Myth and Fraud

Using the tools of scientific inquiry, critical reasoning, and multicultural understanding, surveys a variety of historic and modern misconceptions about past cultures.  Includes how to assess claims about the past, using archaeological data and interpretive tools; and apply these new standards to gain appreciation for some truly exciting recent archaeological discoveries.  

ANTH 3250. North American Archaeology
Introduces students to indigenous societies that inhabited what is now the continental United States, Canada, and northern Mexico from earliest settlement to first encounters with Europeans.  A comparative perspective highlights the richness and diversity of this archaeological record and demonstrates how deep history is interpreted using ancient material culture and early historic documents alongside their oral histories and living traditions of Native descendent communities.

ANTH 3543. Archeology of Ancient Egypt
The archaeological and historic record is used to provide a survey of ancient Egyptian sociocultural development. Emphasis is given to the interaction of economic, political and religious forces involved in state formation. The development of religious belief in Egypt is studied through surveys of iconography and an introduction to reading hieroglyphs.

ANTH 3546. Archaeology in Action: Ethnographic and Experimental Approaches
Introduces students to the theories and methods of ethnoarchaeology and experimental archaeology.  Ethnoarchaeology is the study of living groups to better understand material culture's patterns and meanings in archaeological contexts.  Experimental archaeologists use replicative studies to develop hypotheses and gain insights into past technologies. 

ANTH 4144. The Rise of Agriculture
Process and variation in the development of farming and herding societies. Archaeological record pertaining to domestication of plants and animals in North and South America, Near East, Africa, and East Asia.

ANTH 4245. Rise of States 
Process and variation in the early development of large-scale societies with institutionalized inequality, administrative bureaucracy, and hierarchical political organization.  The course examines evidence of urban planning, monumental constructions, economic specialization, distinctive iconography and ideology, and structured mortuary practice.  

ANTH 4247. Bioarchaeology: Linking Bones and Behavior
Reconstruct patterns of human behavior from integrated biological data sets. Archaeological evidence drawn from human skeletal, plant, and faunal remains. Address questions of nutrition, pathology, occupation, and mortuary ritual.

ANTH 4964. Archaeological Fieldwork
An introduction to methods used in the excavation and analysis of prehistoric sites. Surveying techniques, stratigraphy, analyses of soils and landforms, analytical fundamentals of prehistoric material remains.

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