Graduate Courses Fall term 2017


                               Socio-Cultural Anthropology



       Physical Anthropology
           Research Courses

Schedule subject to change

Academic Calendar

For Cross-Registration Information refer to:

Courses in Sociocultural Anthropology

ANTH GR4201x Principles and Applications of Social and Cultural Anthropology. 3 pts. Ellen Marakowitz. Introductory survey of major concepts and areas of research in social and cultural anthropology. Emphasis is on both the field as it is currently constituted and its relationship to other scholarly and professional disciplines. Required for students in Anthropology Department's master degree program and for students in the graduate programs of other departments and professional schools desiring an introduction in this field. Prerequisites: REQ FOR MA STUDENTS IN ANTHROPOLOGY & OTHERS MUST E-MAIL

ANTH GR4480x Critical Native and Indigenous Studies. 3 pts.  Audra Simpson.  This course is an interdisciplinary survey of the literature and issues that comprise Native American and Indigenous Studies. Readings for this course are organized around the concepts of indigeneity, coloniality, power and "resistance" and concomitantly interrogate these concepts for social and cultural analysis. The syllabus is derived from some of the "classic" and canonical works in Native American Studies such as Custer Died for Your Sins but will also require an engagement with less canonical works such as Red Man's Appeal to Justice in addition to historical, ethnographic and theoretical contributions from scholars that work outside of Native American and Indigenous Studies. This course is open to graduate students and advanced undergraduates.  Advanced undergraduate and graduate students.  Enrollment limit is 15.

ANTH GR6023x Power and Hegemony. 3 pts. Partha Chatterjee. We will read large sections of Gramsci's *Prison Notebooks* and works of Foucault including *Discipline and Punish*, *The History of Sexuality*, and his lectures on security, governmentality and biopolitics. Alongside, we will read key authors such as Schmitt, Agamben, Laclau and Ranciere as well as some recent applications of Gramsci and Foucault in historical and anthropological analysis in order to shed light on contemporary issues of political power. Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.  Enrollment limit is 25.

ANTH GR6067x Language and Its Limits. 3pts.  Elizabeth Green.  This course examines language, along with affinal objects of inquiry such as communication and semiotics, and their conceptual and social limits. The first part of the course focuses on foundational texts that have shaped contemporary linguistic and anthropological approaches to language.Particular attention will be paid to the placement, and theorization, of the boundaries that separate language from not-language. The second part of the course considers a variety of phenomena - from trauma to trees, from disability to the naming of places - that exist at and beyond the threshold of (what is deemed) language. Throughout the course, we will think carefully about the stakes of how we understand language and how we decide who does and who does not possess it.

ANTH GR6070x Making Ethnography: Method and Writing. 3 pts.  Yasmin Cho. This course offers a hands-on introduction to key methods of ethnographic fieldwork while exploring both practical and critical questions raised by the production of ethnographic knowledge. Students will become familiar with the diverse techniques collected under the heading of 'ethnographic research' and will put these into action through a series of mini-research assignments. These assignments-and the successes, failures, surprises, disappointments and dilemmas students encounter in carrying them out-also provide the raw material through which we consider the epistemological and ethical possibilities and limits of ethnographic knowledge. Thus we take up ethnographic fieldwork and writing as situated practices with powerful histories, rather than as neutral methodological tools. Readings include examples of various kinds of ethnographic text (including images) and critical reflections on ethnography itself. Mini research assignments comprise a scaled-down dry run of ethnography making, giving students practice at preparing research proposals, conducting field observation and interviews, and turning these into contextualized ethnographic texts. Prerequisites: the instructor's permission. Enrollment limit is 20.

ANTH G6155x Righting Wrongs:  Slavery and Repair. 3 pts.  David Scott.  This course critically examines some of the moral and historical arguments for the justification of reparations for New World slavery. We explore the state of the debate about such historical injustices -- inquiring into questions of cultural trauma, memory, and generations. Our main concern will be to connect a moral claim about repair to an understanding of the injury of slavery in the Americas.  . Enrollment limit is 15. Graduate students only.

ANTH GR6206x Profane Illumination II. 3 pts.  Michael Taussig.  Let us explore Walter Benjamin on the storyteller with a view to expanding our practice of critique as a story-bound, ficto-critical, endeavor, nicely expressed by Benjamin’s radio stories for kids, his auto-ethnography, “Berlin Childhood,” and my essays on his grave at Port Bou and getting high with Benjamin and Burroughs. The Ibizan interlude (1932-33) mixing fiction, dream, ethnography, and drugs, includes the mind-blowing essay on the mimetic faculty” which we can develop where performance overlaps with story as well as with the discussion of children’s toys and colored illustrations. Instructor’s permission is required.

ANTH GR6248x Decolonization Methodology. 3 pts. Paige West. The goals of this graduate seminar are multiple. First, we will critically examine the ways in which research has been conducted and how research methodology has been taught in anthropology. Second, we will, drawing on the work of indigenous scholars and critics of the colonial nature of anthropological practice and discourse, attempt to theorize new forms of social inquiry that do not replicate the historic injustices of anthropological research, representation, and the material consequences of the two. Third, we will critically examine the assumed relationship between European social theory and the lived experiences of people living in indigenous worlds and the global south. Finally, each student will produce a draft of a dissertation research proposal. Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.  Enrollment limit is 15.

ANTH GR6305x  Art, Aesthetics, and the Political. 3 pts. Marilyn Ivy.  Cross-disciplinary in inspiration, this seminar engages work in anthropology, art criticism, literary studies, aesthetics, and philosophy to think about the political possibilities of art and the aesthetic dimensions of the political.  Focusing most sharply (but not exclusively) on what is variously called socially engaged art, relational art, or participatory art, the seminar will consider recent art practices, performances, texts, and objects across a diverse range of genres and national-cultural locations.  Art thinkers studied will include Kant, Benjamin, Adorno, Lyotard, Ranciere, Kitagawa, García-Canclini, Groys, Bishop, Bourriard, and beyond.  Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.  Enrollment limit is 20.

ANTH GR6601x Questions in Anthropological Theory I: Texts. 3 pts. Instructor to be announced.  Presents students with critical theories of society, paying particular attention to classic continental social theory of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. We will trace a trajectory through important French and German writings essential for any understanding of the modern discipline of anthropology: from Saussure through Durkheim and Mauss, Marx, Weber, and on to the structuralist elaboration of these theoretical perspectives in Claude Lévi-Strauss, always bearing in mind the relationship of these theories to contemporary anthropology. We come last to Foucault and affiliated theorists as successors both to French structuralism and to German social theory and its concerns with modernity, rationality, and power. Throughout the readings, we will give special care to questions of signification as they inform anthropological inquiry, and we will be alert to the historical contexts that situate the discipline of anthropology today. ONLY OPEN TO 1ST YR PHD STUDENTS IN ANTHROPOLOGY.  

ANTH GR8498x Modern China. 3 pts.  Myron Cohen.  Selected themes in the analysis of Chinese society during late imperial and modern times.


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Courses in Archaeology

ANTH GR4127x Necropolitics. 3 pts.  Zoe Crossland.  Archaeological traces of warfare and conflict demand a sophisticated theoretical engagement, whether the context is recent mass graves or ancient battlefields. This class brings the anthropological literature on violence, ritual, and religion together with archaeological evidence of past violence, to think through archaeological involvement in present day conflicts.



Courses in Museum Anthropology

ANTH GR6352x Museum Anthropology: History and Theory. 3 pts. Brian Boyd. This course will consider museums as reflectors of social priorities which store important objects and display them in ways that present significant cultural messages. Students visit several New York museums to learn how a museum functions. Mandatory for M.A. in Museum Anth. If there are spaces remaining, other graduate students must have Instructor permission before registering.

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Biological/Physical Anthropology

Courses not offered Fall term 2017

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Graduate Research Courses

ANTH GR9999x Wednesday Seminar.  Registration is only open to Anthropology PhD students in residence.  All others are required to attend. Reports of ongoing research are presented by staff members, students, and special guests

Graduate Independent Research Courses in Anthropology:  Please refer to the online directory of courses


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