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Fall 2017 Course Offerings

APY 501SEM: Teaching and Research Resources

Reg. #22821
Dr. Joyce Sirianni

Pedagogical aspects of instruction, including use of films, laboratories and field experience, bibliographic and archival materials, cross-cultural files and data banks.

APY 508SEM: Qualitative Research Methods

Reg. #21792
Thursday 3:30-6:10pm
261 Fillmore Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Ana Mariella Bacigalupo

This course will provide students with hands-on training in qualitative, ethnographic methods of research. Students will learn field techniques such as participant observation, interviewing, documentation, and use of media. Students will also learn how to design a research project, write a research proposal, and apply to the human subjects review board for project approval. The course will address research ethics, interpretation and representation of data, and the use of effective writing techniques. It will provide a critical evaluation of the nature of ethnographic research, including the rethinking of site, voice, and ethnographic authority. Students’ final projects can either be an ethnographic interview, an exercise in participant observation, or a research proposal in preparation for an MA or PhD project.

APY 515SEM: Advanced Socio-Legal Studies

Reg. #24301
Friday 12:15-3:15pm
O'Brian 505 (Baldy Seminar Room)
Dr. Errol Meidinger

This course is a colloquium for advanced graduate and law students who wish to learn about and carry out cutting edge research on law, legal institutions, and social policy. It will build upon ongoing distinguished speaker and workshop series sponsored by the Baldy Center, Law School, and affiliated UB departments. Substantive topics will vary with speakers and student interests, but are likely to range across administrative regulation, criminal law, environmental governance, human rights, international trade, legal profession, race, and a variety of other subjects. Students will read the papers, attend and participate in the presentations, and meet with the speakers in a small group setting following the public presentations. They will be able to discuss both the speakers' and their own research in a multi-disciplinary environment and build important new relationships with visiting speakers, UB faculty members, and fellow students. Students enrolling in the seminar will have the option of writing one substantial research paper or three short critical analyses of papers presented by speakers.

APY 545LEC: Dental Anthropology

Reg. #23501
Tuesday 4:00-6:40pm
Spaulding 158
Dr. Joyce Sirianni

This seminar covers topics such as embryological development and growth of primate jaws and teeth; basic craniofacial anatomy; theories of dental evolution; basic dental anatomy; nonhuman and human dental variation; forensic odontology, and dental pathologies.  Students will be required to make presentations on various dental topics, e.g., dental adaptations to diet, evolutionary trends in hominid tooth size, ethnic differences in tooth morphology and size.

APY 550SEM: Evolution Colloquium

Reg. #16040
Tuesday 12:30-1:50pm
Cooke 435
Dr. Howard Lasker

This seminar is a focal point of the Graduate Group in Evolutionary Biology and Ecology, but it is open to all students of the College of Arts and Sciences with an interest in Evolution, Ecology and Behavior. Students and faculty will review recent research in evolutionary processes by discussing topics in evolutionary theory, ecology, ethology and paleobiology. This will also be a forum for students to present their research ideas and topics.

APY 575SEM: Topics - Political Ecology

Reg. #23497
Wednesday 9:30am-12:10pm
261 Fillmore Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Jaume Franquesa

The term ‘political ecology’ has become a useful shorthand for the growing recognition, in several disciplines, of the extent to which environmental changes and societal processes are intertwined. This course interrogates this relationship through the engagement with a wide spectrum of disciplinary frameworks, ranging from environmental history to human geography, and from social anthropology to world-systems theory and ecological economics. From a theoretical perspective, our inquiry will privilege – but it will not be reduced to – Marxist approaches, with the aim of developing a socioenvironmental understanding of political and economic reality.

The course will be divided into two parts. The first one will revolve around ‘nature’ and its sociohistorical construction, working with concepts and processes such as ‘accumulation by dispossession’ (D Harvey), ‘production of nature’ (N Smith, J Moore), extraction economies (Bunker), ecological distribution conflicts (Martinez-Alier), entropy (Hornborg) and metabolism (Foster). The second part will apply the concepts of the first part to one specific object: energy. A focus on energy will allow us to reflect and discuss on concepts and processes such as sustainability, climate change and energy transitions, while learning about the socioenvironmental consequences of different energy production alternatives through the reading of cross-culturally located case studies. 

APY 575SEM: Topics - Migration and Diaspora

Reg. # 23496
Monday 3:30-6:10pm
261 Fillmore Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Deborah Reed-Danahay

This course title is Migration and Diaspora. It deals with these topics comparatively, with a focus on North America and Europe. We will read critical essays/articles, ethnographies, and autoethnographies/memoirs.  We will discuss a range of issues related to displacement and emplacement, belonging, and transnationalism. Students will have an opportunity to do research projects on these and other related topics of their choice (with approval of the instructor).

APY 578SEM: Ethnomedicine

Reg. #23659
Thursday 12:30-3:10pm
261 Fillmore Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Frederick Klaits

This course presents an advanced survey of current anthropological literature on beliefs and practices relating to health and illness. We will focus on how predicaments of care shape experiences of the body as a site of both suffering and healing. Using a range of ethnographic sources, we will consider how and whether forms of suffering elicit “moral economies” that shape the obligations people feel to care for one another.​

APY 587SEM: Topics - Archaeology of Sacred Places and Spaces

Reg. #23889
Monday 10:00am-12:40pm
354 Fillmore Academic Center
Dr. Timothy Chevral

In this course we will examine definitions and concepts of the sacred, the social construction of places and spaces, and explore the relationships between place, space, and the supernatural in archaeological contexts. Incorporating studies from North, Middle and South America as well as Eurasia, Australia and Africa, we will use ethnographic, historic, and archaeological cases as a key to understanding the often baffling archaeological connections between place, belief, and worldviews in ancient times. 

All human societies tangibly and cognitively construct physical, social, economic, political, and sacred space and place, but every society has its own unique cultural signature in terms of how it organizes and imbues meaning onto place and space. Until recently, we lacked many systematic and comprehensive studies of how various social systems, past and present, both determine and are reflected in location and locale; recent advances on these issues have come from a number of perspectives: structuralism, postmodernism and poststructuralism, using concepts such as phenomenology, embodiment, practice, and performance. To do this, we will look at the history of thought about sacred space within anthropology and archaeology but also geography, psychology, neurophysiology, art, and architecture. How do scholars in various disciplines understand these issues, and what can it tell us about the archaeological past? Ideas from geography, anthropology, and architecture give insights into how humans change space into place through physical and cognitive constructions, and attach meaning and history to natural and built locales.

We will focus on both natural features considered sacred, such as caves, mountains, water, forests, and on human modification of the natural landscape for symbolic purposes, such as with standing stones, rock art, geoglyphs, and the construction of built sacred places and spaces: temples, plazas, and sacred or ritual landscapes.

Topics include:

• conceptualizations of space, place, symbol, and sacredness;

• meaning and context of sacred structures and landscapes;

• contextual (emic) and analytical (etic) perceptions of the material world

• the impact of sacred perception on resource use and mobility;

• the role of myth, ritual, and history in sacred site location, construction, and geometry;

• sacred landscape as identity (belief, kinship, ethnicity, gender);

• contemporary disputes over sacred sites and regions

APY 600TUT: MA/Thesis Guidance

Variable Credit
Permission of Instructor

Graduate students should register for their major professor’s section of this course when they are writing their MA Project/Thesis.

APY 601TUT: Individual Readings in Archaeology

Variable Credit
Permission of Instructor

If, after speaking to the Instructor and he/she agrees to work with you, the graduate student must fill out an Independent Study Form (form available outside the Anthropology Graduate Office), have the instructor and the Director of Graduate Studies sign it then give it to Maria to put in your file which becomes part of your Application to Candidacy. Then the student may register for the appropriate number of credit hours.

APY 602TUT: Individual Readings in Cultural Anthropology

Variable Credit
Permission of Instructor

If, after speaking to the Instructor and he/she agrees to work with you, the graduate student must fill out an Independent Study Form (form available outside the Anthropology Graduate Office), have the instructor and the Director of Graduate Studies sign it then give it to Maria to put in your file which becomes part of your Application to Candidacy. Then the student may register for the appropriate number of credit hours.

APY 607TUT: Individual Readings in Physical Anthropology

Variable Credit
Permission of Instructor

If, after speaking to the Instructor and he/she agrees to work with you, the graduate student must fill out an Independent Study Form (form available outside the Anthropology Graduate Office), have the instructor and the Director of Graduate Studies sign it then give it to Maria to put in your file which becomes part of your Application to Candidacy. Then the student may register for the appropriate number of credit hours.

APY 611LEC: Celt, Anglo-Saxon, Viking

Reg. #23502
Thursday 10:00am-12:40pm
261 Fillmore Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Timothy Chevral

Celts, Anglo-Saxons and Vikings: these names evoke many colorful ideas and legendary images, but who were these peoples and what do we really know about them?   This course explores over two millennia of dynamic times in Europe. Celtic peoples can be traced to the late Bronze Age and have left us spectacular archaeological remains: gold, silver and bronze works of art, fantastically rich burials and monuments, trade with the Greeks, then Romans.   Anglo-Saxon cultures that existed from around AD 400 to 1000 were once thought of as constituting a dark age, but this period is now known to have been a dynamic time, seeing the rise and fall of states, economic expansion, innovative trade and manufacturing traditions, and religious transformation, when Christianity spread and mingled with pre-Christian beliefs.  At the same time, pre-Viking and Viking cultures were developing in Scandinavia, bursting upon the world at around AD 800.  Often imagined as bloodthirsty raiders, Vikings were also master craftspeople, traders, explorers, and built their own state-level societies at home as they colonized abroad.

Topics will include the rise of chiefdoms and states and their political economies, technology, trade and cultural contact, plus social structure and ideology, aesthetic expression, and religious beliefs. Readings will include case studies of archaeological investigations and ethnohistoric documents. Another aspect of the course will be to teach you how archaeologists study the past, and how they determine the ³real story² as opposed to popular but erroneous conceptions.

In the final part of the course, we will examine current myths and stereotypes about these cultures, and their role in modern national and ethnic identity construction. Various nationalist movements, political ideologies, and even reconstituted religious traditions have appropriated these cultures for their own purposes. We will examine the roots of this trend and its impact on the modern world.

APY 614LEC: Hominin Behavior

Reg. #21131
Wednesday 3:00-5:40pm
158 Spaulding Quad
Dr. Stephen Lycett

There can be few greater challenges to science than studying the behavior of a long-dead animal.  This is especially the case with studying hominin behavior.  Yet, this challenge must be met if we are to understand our behavioral origins and heritage.  Today, only one species of hominin exists: Homo sapiens.  An absence of closely related hominin taxa leaves us with a limited range of potential models that we might look to for inspiration.  For instance, do chimpanzees provide clues or should we look to modern hunter-gatherers?  Does psychology provide an answer?  Do we need to look to evolutionary theory? Can experiments be of assistance in a fundamentally historical sciences?  With stone tools and the debris of their manufacture comprising much of our basic primary data, what hope is there for a rigorous science of hominin behavior?

This class is divided into two sections.  The first section will provide an introduction to hominin evolution and the behavioral record, which will be useful to those new to the topic.  Along the way some of the major questions will be encountered.  The aim of the first section is to show something of what is at stake in terms of the importance of these issues for a full understanding of own behavioral heritage; and yet, something of the frustration that accompanies this field will also be demonstrated.  The second part of the class attempts to challenge students to arrive at conclusions about how a scientific response to these questions and frustrations may be developed.  A series of possible responses are introduced, and you will be challenged to probe the strengths and weaknesses of these various approaches.  By the end of the course you will be asked to present your views (with justifications) for how a rigorous and scientific approach to our behavioral evolution may be undertaken.

APY 651SEM: Graduate Survey - Physical Anthropology

Reg. #20111
Monday 12:30—3:10pm
158 Spaulding Quad

Comprehensive review of physical anthropology for first year graduate students.

APY 652LEC: Graduate Survey - Old World Archaeology

Reg. #15665
Tuesday 12:30—3:10pm
354 Fillmore Academic Center
Dr. Peter Biehl

This course presents a systematic treatment of some important topics in Old World archaeology ranging from ca. 2.5 million years ago to ca. 2000 BC. It will also include an introduction to the history and scope of archaeology and an overview of archaeological method and theory and of current movements and themes in archaeology. Within a coherent theoretical framework, the course attempts to bring together a wide range of topics in Old World archaeology such as subsistence strategies of the earliest humans, transition to farming, origins and development of social complexity, urbanism and state formation.

APY 655EM: Graduate Survey - Social Anthropology

Reg. #22164
Tuesday 9:30am-12:10pm
261 Fillmore Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Vasiliki Neofotistos

This course is designed to give first year graduate students a basic grounding in "classic" social theory as it was developed in that important modernist period between the mid-19th century and the end of the first World War, along with the subsequent development and refinement of social theory through this modernist lens, and the break with modernism in the late 1970's. Throughout, our emphasis will be on the ways in which social theoretical issues informing contemporary anthropology may be illuminated by foundational work in classic social theory, or where contemporary theoretical problems represent a more radical split with "classic" discourses.  

APY 700TUT: Dissertation Guidance

Variable Credit
Permission of Instructor

Graduate students should register for at least 1 credit hour of their major professor’s section of this every semester until the dissertation is complete when writing their PhD dissertation.

APY 730SEM: Adv. Problems in Areal Archaeology - Neolithic and Bronze Age

Reg. #16229
Wednesday 2:00-4:40pm
261 Fillmore Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Sarunas Milisauskas

A seminar in European Neolithic and Bronze Age. This is a required course for those students specializing in archaeology. It will be taught in a seminar format; students are expected to be active participants. Requirements: A number of articles or chapters will be assigned for reading on archaeology of various regions or countries. You are expected to read all assigned articles or chapters. Class sessions will consist of presentations of assigned articles or chapters and discussion of material.