AN4110 Development of Theory in Social Anthropology 6.0
The purpose of this course is to explore a range of theoretical developments in socio-cultural anthropological as they have developed over the years. As a discipline focused on society and culture, anthropology aims to make sense of wide ranging social processes and practices to evaluate shifting relations between individuals and society. Anthropological theories aim to interpret social action and explain social transformations. In this course, we examine how different schools of thought in anthropology, at different historical and political junctures, have forwarded different theories of social and cultural life. Our aim is to examine the contributions of these theorists and the ensuing debates.
This course is organized such that by the end of the year you will understand the ‘high points’ of different theoretical schools and see how theory in anthropology is produced and circulated. In addition to this, we will also examine the current debates that have critically informed questions of ethnographic methods, writing, and representation.
In the fall semester we examine historically significant texts that have contributed to the foundation of anthropological theory. In the winter semester we examine a range of concepts central to contemporary anthropology.