Spring 2018 Course Offerings

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APY 104LEC: Great Sites and Lost Tribes

Reg.# 23218
Tuesday/Thursday 11:00am—12:20pm
Instructor Sarah Hoffman
170 Fillmore Academic Center

This class examines the romantic element in archaeology in the great sites of the world, such as Troy, Olduvai Gorge, Stonehenge, and so forth. Since the sites cannot be separated from their discoverers and excavators, we also consider the lives of many famous archaeologists including Schliemann, Garrod, Mellaart, Leakey, and Kenyon, to name a few. Comparisons are made to modern and historical fictional archaeologists.

APY 105LEC: Introduction to Anthropology

Reg.# 24239
Monday/Wednesday/Friday 4:00--4:50pm
Natural Sciences Complex 210
Instructor Melanie Lacan

This class is a general introduction to the field of anthropology, the study of humanity. It is designed to pique your interest in the broad diversity of human behavior and lifestyles across the world and throughout time. This course will take a look at our four major subfields - archaeology, linguistic anthropology, physical anthropology, and cultural anthropology - and include discussions on our "youngest" subfield, applied anthropology. The goal of this class is to understand the wide range of issues covered by the fields of anthropology, the ways in which these issues are studied by specialists in the field, and the practical effects of the questions covered by anthropological study. In order to survey such a wide range of issues, the class is structured in a standard lecture format, with small group exercises and class discussions.

APY 106LEC: Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

Tuesday/Thursday 12:30-1:50pm
Instructor Dr. Jaume Franquesa

Cultural anthropology is the comparative study of human lifeways, experiences, and beliefs.   It is often characterized as a discipline that makes the strange familiar and the familiar strange.  Anthropology seeks to understand how people attribute values and meanings to things and actions, and how these values and meanings motivate people’s actions in societies around the world, including our own.  The discipline’s distinguishing approach is characterized by long-term fieldwork, in which the researcher lives in the community he or she studies and learns – through participation, observation, and interviews – about the meanings of everyday life and activities.

In this course, you will be encouraged to think about the complexities of cultural processes and of cross-cultural interaction in a globalizing world.  The first section of the course introduces anthropological aims and methods.  In each of the following sections, we apply comparative methods to particular topics that anthropologists have studied across cultures.  In the second section, we focus on kinship, marriage and gender; we discuss economic systems in the third section, and consumption; the fourth section focuses on political systems and worldviews; and in the final section we examine some of the ways anthropologists have approached current urban and environmental problems.  By the end of the course, you should have acquired some familiarity with the range of variation in the organization and operation of human societies.

APY 107LEC: Introduction to Physical Anthropology

Reg. #20010
Tuesday/Thursday 3:30—4:50pm
Instructor Dr. Stephen Lycett
322 Clemens

For centuries preceding modern times, our uniqueness as a species was taken as a sign of special creation; we were not seen to be a part of nature. But as knowledge of human evolution, our closeness to other primates, and our adaptations to specific environments emerged, we have taken our place in the animal kingdom. Here, we learn how those insights developed, and about current methods of understanding human origins and the natural forces that have shaped us.

APY 108LEC: Introduction to Archaeology

Reg. #20011
Monday/Wednesday/Friday 12:00-12:50pm
Instructor Dr. Douglas Perrelli
170 Fillmore Academic Center

Archaeology is the study of the human past through its material remains.  So much evidence of human activity on earth exists outside the realm of written records that archaeology is of primary importance in reconstructing past human life ways. Bridging the gap between the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities, archaeologists integrate many types of evidence in order to shed light on the origins of our species, Homo sapiens sapiens and development through time of so many different cultural manifestations.  Introduction to Archaeology provides an overview of the methods, theories and models used by archaeologists to better understand past human societies, from the formulation of a research question, through the processes of survey and excavation, to the analysis of data, and the interpretation of the results. The many topics covered in the course include: excavation, interpretation, conservation, technology, cultural diffusion and evolution, the individual and culture groups, and cultural heritage. The course will include hands-on introduction to stone tools and other artifacts in class.

APY 168LEC: Myth & Religion in the Ancient World

Reg. #20143
Monday/Wednesday/Friday 12:00—12:50 pm
Instructor Dr. Roger Woodard
109 Knox

In this course, we will investigate mythic and religious traditions of ancient Greece and Rome. Our study of myth and religion will, however, be comparative in emphasis. We will thus have a twofold goal: (1) to encounter the Greco-Roman traditions themselves and (2) through our comparative investigations, to attempt to identify the mythic and religious traditions which the Greeks and especially the more conservative Romans inherited from their Indo-European ancestors. We will also turn our full gaze upon comparative materials, but even as we are engaged in discovering the mythic and religious traditions of the ancient Indic, Iranian Celtic, Germanic and Hittite cultures, we will continue to encounter new materials and motifs from Greece and Rome. 

APY 246LEC: Introduction to Primate Behavior

Reg. #23219
Monday/Wednesday/Friday 2:00—2:50 pm
158 Spaulding Quad
Instructor Erin Weigel

In this course we will describe the life cycles of various primate species, the biological and social problems they face (e.g., growing up within a complex social group, finding food, mates, a place to live, and protection from predators, etc.), and the solutions to these problems. We will examine the ways scientists have extracted general principles of behavior from the data, particularly those that are concerned with evolutionary processes.  Methods of research used in the field will be emphasized, although laboratory studies will also be discussed where they enhance understanding of the data from the field. In addition, issues of particular interest to human social evolution will be discussed; for example, language studies with apes, cooperative hunting and tool-making.

APY 248LEC: Human Genetics

Reg. #20033
Monday/Wednesday/Friday 12:00—12:50 pm
Instructor Dr. Melanie Mayberry
220 Natural Sciences Complex

Examines contemporary human genetics relevant to families and society, including genetic diseases, family planning and demography, genetic counseling and prenatal diagnosis, genetic engineering, and genetics and the law. Provides students with sufficient understanding of contemporary human genetics to intelligently address these issues.

APY 275LEC: Culture, Health and Illness

Reg. #23220
Monday/Wednesday/Friday 10:00—10:50am
Instructor Dr. Frederick Klaits
121 Cooke

People in all societies experience illness, but their understandings of the causes of disease and approaches for restoring health differ greatly. This course examines the social and cultural dimensions of health, illness, and healing. Through a variety of case studies, we will learn about the ways medical anthropologists study explanations of disease, experiences of suffering, and the social organization of health care.  Western medicine, also called “biomedicine,” will also be an object of our analysis. We will discuss how the delivery of biomedical health care involves particular understandings of the body and appropriate social relationships. Emphasis will also be placed on how the stories that individuals and institutions circulate about human agency in suffering shape people’s convictions about how to care, and for whom to care. The course aims to teach students to think about health, disease, and medicine in national, cross-cultural and global terms.

APY 330LEC: Prehistory of Europe

Reg. #21761
Monday/Wednesday/Friday 3:00—3:50pm
Instructor Jacob Brady
108 Baldy

This course offers an overview of the archaeology of prehistoric Europe from the peopling of the region in the Lower Palaeolithic through the florescence of art and culture in the Upper Paleolithic, to the introduction of agriculture and the formation of complex societies in the Neolithic and Copper Age, to the beginning of early states and empires in the Bronze Age and Iron Age.

APY 345LEC: Comparative Primate Anatomy

Reg.# 21676
Monday 4:00--6:40pm
Instructor Dr. Joyce Sirianni
170 Fillmore Academic Center
Co-requisite: APY 346: Primate Dissections

This course focuses on studying the differences and similarities in the anatomy of living primates in order to understand the biological relationships of various primate species and the selective adaptations which led to differences in their anatomy. Knowledge of how living primates are adaptive to diverse environments is useful in interpreting the evolutionary history of primate species. By establishing behavioral and morphological correlates paleontologists may better understand how fossil primates may have utilized their environment. Basic to this course is the comparison of the gross anatomy of three closely related primates, e.g. monkeys, apes and humans.

Important Class Note
All students must register for APY 345 lecture and a APY 346 lab section. There are 5 sections of APY 346 - please be sure to select "View All" in the blue box above the course listing to see all five sections of the lab. If you are having trouble enrolling in a section, try another section. Then contact Brittany Kenyon (bkenyon@buffalo.edu), Director, Comparative Primate Anatomy Laboratory, to assist you in enrolling for your preferred section (if space permits).

Students are required to register for 1 lab section

APY 346LAB: Dissections in Primate Anatomy

Location: All labs take place in Spaulding Quad, Room 155
Co-requsite: APY 345: Comparative Primate Anatomy

Instructor Dr. Joyce Sirianni

LAB A      Monday, 9:00am—12:50pm      (Reg.#20041)

LAB B      Tuesday, 1:00pm—4:50pm       (Reg.#20042)

LAB C      Wednesday, 1:00pm—4:50pm  (Reg.#20043)

LAB D      Thursday, 1:00pm—4:50pm     (Reg.#20044)

LAB E       Friday, 2:00pm—5:50pm         (Reg.#20045)

The laboratory component covers basic primate gross anatomy learned by dissecting and making comparative observations of various species of primates.

APY 347LEC: Understanding Human Variation

Reg. #23225
Tuesday/Thursday 3:30—4:50pm
354 Fillmore Academic Center
Instructor Dr. Noreen von Cramon-Taubadel

Modern humans are very unusual primates. We have low levels of genetic variation relative to other primates, yet are outwardly quite diverse in our external appearance. This diversity is structured geographically due to the fact that we live on almost every continent on earth. The history of population dispersals, migrations, gene flow, and natural selection have shaped our genetic and phenotypic variation. Here we will explore the empirical reality of modern human population genetic and phenotypic variation and set it in its evolutionary and historical context.

APY 377LEC: Magic, Sorcery and Witchcraft

Monday/Wednesday/Friday 10:00—10:50am
Instructor Dr. Phillips Stevens
354 Fillmore Academic Center

Understanding the nature of magic and the anthropology of sorcery and witchcraft beliefs around the world and throughout history offers insights into some fundamental aspects of human belief and behavior. Considers 'primitive' beliefs as representative of universal beliefs and as background to the course's consideration of 'occult' interests and fears in contemporary America.

APY 401LEC: Theory in Anthropology

Reg. #20615
Tuesday/Thursday 9:30am—10:50am
Instructor Dr. Jaume Franquesa
354 Fillmore Academic Center

Reviews the growth of anthropology as a scientific discipline. Analyzes in detail major anthropological approaches and theories.

APY 402SEM: Contemporary Europe

Reg. #23513
Wednesday 2:00—4:40pm
354 Fillmore Academic Center
Instructor Dr. Deborah Reed-Danahay

We will consider “Europe” as both an object of study and a setting in which to conduct ethnographic research. A major focus will be the ways in which The European Union shapes and responds to contemporary European society and culture. In addition to previous topics of interest to anthropologists working in Europe, current issues regarding migration and the so-called “refugee crisis,” “Brexit,” and Turkey’s relationship to the EU will be explored. We will examine the broad question of what it means to be European in the contemporary world, through an exploration of the everyday lives and experiences of people living in Europe. By taking this course, you will deepen your knowledge of the various meanings of “being European” and the ways in which cultural anthropologists have approached the study of life in villages, cities, and institutions. You are encouraged to keep up with current events in Europe while enrolled in this class.

APY 414SEM: Museum Management

Reg. #21763
Monday 9:30am—12:10pm
Anderson Gallery
Instructor Dr. Peter Biehl

Museum and collection management and research are motivated by two things: a love of objects, and a fascination with the ways in which they speak about the past and the present. The care of artifacts cannot stop at identification, physical conservation, and exhibition. Research about museum and collection objects must be seen as part of a larger task: an exploration of the social and cultural significance of objects in relation to each other and to the people who made, used, and kept them as well as those who collected them. Conservation must include preservation of the information accompanying an object, information beyond provenance, or object type. Finally, curatorial research entails a critical awareness of our own culturally-bound responses to artifacts. This course prepares students for research in the museum environment, and for the challenge of developing meaning and value for those collections, in the context of the Cravens Collection, housed since March 2010 in the Anderson Gallery of the UB College of Arts and Sciences, where the course will be held. Each class integrates presentations, group work and discussion, case studies, and independent research. In addition, the instructor will facilitate visits from guest lecturers. At the end of the course, the students will curate together their own public exhibition of objects from the Cravens Collection, and will write up short narratives about the objects they have studied during the course. The narratives will then be included in an exhibition catalogue.

APY 420SEM: Topic - Human Impacts on Ancient Environments

Reg. #23514
Thursday 11:00am—1:40pm
354 Fillmore Academic Center
Instructor Dr. Timothy Chevral

This course examines the impact of human actions on past environments and cultures: negative, positive and neutral outcomes related to agricultural livelihood, ancient industries, and political or religious ritual manipulation of landscape. We will also learn how professionals concerned with documenting the past can play a larger role in the public’s understanding that present-day ecosystems are not the result of recent activities, but of centuries of millennia of human-environment interactions.

APY 477SEM: Culture and Disability

Reg. #23222
Monday 12:30—3:10pm
354 Fillmore Academic Center
Instructor Dr. Frederick Klaits

This course is an introduction to diasbility studies, an integrative subfield representing research by medical anthropologists, sociologists, psychologists, and historians, as well as clinical and social interventions by social workers, occupational and physical therapists, and public health agents. What unifies these discplines is the search for understanding of societal and cross-cultural attitudes and policies regarding impairment, illness, and difference, especially those whose physical or behavioral differences have been stigmatized through negative social or medical labels.

Among the topics to be considered are the meanding and perceptions of impairment in various cultures and how these perceptions influence the rights and status of people living with disability. We will look at how individuals and their families experience disability, severe injury, stigmatized illnesses, and severe trauma and come to develop new identities through these experiences. And we will consider commmunity support systems and government policies that positively or negatively affect traumatized and disabled individuals and their families.

APY 494SEM: Senior Seminar: Death and Dying

Reg. #23508
Thursday 12:30--3:10pm
Instructor Dr. Ana Mariella Bacigalupo
261 Fillmore (Paley Library)

Topic: The Anthropology of Death and Dying
In this senior seminar we will explore the interrelated social, cultural, medical, and political underpinnings of death and the way different communities have responded to it. Nineteenth-century anthropologists speculated that the origin of religion was to be found in the puzzlement of early humans about what differentiates the living from the dead. Twentieth-century anthropologists interpreted death as a potential tear in the social fabric, requiring symbolic management for societal stability. We will explore the confusion about dying and death resulting from experiences of rebirth and medical technologies that maintain people’s lives through the body parts of cadavers. We will also analyze mourning, living in the wake, compassionate cannibalism, modern-day American care for the dying, and the politics of death.

APY 494SEM: Senior Seminar: Anthropological Approaches to Contemporary Issues

Reg. #21754
Monday/Wednesday 9:00-10:20am
354 Fillmore Academic Center
Instructor Dr. Phil Stevens

This course will satisfy the Practicum requirement.

Racism, anti-Semitism, xenophobia, sexual discrimination, conspiracy theories, refugee issues, cultural responses to the science of climate change, abortion, domestic violence, fundamentalist religious beliefs, the gun culture, science and “creation science,” crime and punishment, social inequality, nativism and populism, Trumpism and Brexit, patriotism, the anthropology of knowledge, privacy, urban v. rural life and attitudes…the list of social issues about which anthropology has something meaningful to say is virtually endless. We will consider all the above, and others, in our Senior Seminar this spring. 

To satisfy the Practicum students will select a topic and build a research project around it, to investigate attitudes toward it in a specific community of people in WNY, and will report on their research to the seminar.

APY 495SEM: Supervised Teaching

Reg. #20034
Saturday 12:00—2:40pm
Spaulding Quad 158
Instructor Dr. Joyce Sirianni

Requires permission of instructor.

APY 496TUT: Internship

Credits: 1-6
Pre-requisites: permission of instructor
Grading: Graded (A-F)

Students wishing to complete an internship with a host agency may register for this course with the agreement of the agency supervisor and the faculty advisor.

APY 499TUT: Individual Study and Research

Credits: 1-8
Pre-requisites: permission of instructor
Grading: Graded (A-F)

Individually designed program of reading, research, or skills development in close association with an instructor.

HUB Course Schedule

Late Registration Fee

To avoid the late enrollment fee, all continuing UB students must register for classes before December 21.