Graduate Courses

Browse our current semester course offerings.

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Fall 2022 Course Offerings

APY 501SEM: Teaching and Research Resources

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 512SEM: Kinship and Social Structure

Reg. #23243
Tuesday, 9:30am-12:10pm
261 Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Frederick Klaits

We will examine current theoretical and methodological issues in the analysis of kinship, using case studies from Africa, Asia, Southeast Asia, Melanesia, Europe, and North America.  

APY 514SEM : Museum Management

Reg. #23245
Wednesday, 12 :30-3:10pm
261 Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Edith Gonzalez

This course is designed to be an introduction to the general history, theory, and practice of museums.

APY 521SEM : Language, Culture and Power

Reg. #19959
Monday, 5:00-7:40pm
261 Deborah Reed-Danahay

This seminar introduces students to the field of anthropological linguistics. The relationship between language, culture, and power will be the major focus. We will explore the importance of language and speech in ethnographic research, including topics such as the ethnography of speaking, sociolinguistics, discourse analysis, gender, and issues in the study of dominant and minority languages.

APY 546LEC: Dental Anthropology

Reg. #18242
Tuesday, 4:00-6:40pm
158 Spaulding Quad
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 575SEM: Topic - Living in the Anthropocene

Reg. #23244
Tuesday, 3:30-6:10pm
261 Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Ana Mariella Bacigalupo

This interdisciplinary course engages with debates about the controversial concept of the Anthropocene—the idea that humans have irrevocably (and negatively) altered the earth in the current epoch—and debates about the future of (various) humans, their relationships to other species, and planetary transformation. How does anthropogenic climate change affect other living beings, including humans? How do we think about anthropos, or “the human,” in such times? When did the Anthropocene begin, and which humans brought it into being? How are differently situated humans being changed by the rapid environmental changes under way? How are our notions of the human intertwined with those about other forms of life? What kind of worlds are being made and unmade, and for what beings? In exploring these and other questions, we will analyze works by anthropologists, geographers, philosophers, lawyers, feminists, STS thinkers, economists, sociologists, chemists, geologists, and other scientists.

APY 604SEM: Culture and Disability

Reg. #23242
Monday, 9:00-11:40am
354 Academic Center
Dr. Frederick Klaits

This course is an introduction to disability 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 disciplines 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 meanings 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 community support systems and government policies that positively or negatively affect traumatized and disabled individuals and their families.

APY 614LEC: Hominin Behavior

Reg. #19074
Wednesday, 4:00-6:40pm
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 science? 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?

History shows that the field is subject to wild speculations. For instance, Neanderthals are sometimes portrayed as close brethren who would not evoke response if encountered on the New York subway (at least if dressed in a business suit, so the story goes). At other times they have been portrayed as fundamentally different in behavior and intelligence from our own species. Which is it?

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 for those new to the topic. Along the way some of the major questions will be encountered. The aim of this first section is to show something of what is at stake in terms of the importance of these issues for a full understanding of our 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. The class is taught through lectures and student‐led seminars. The class is graded through continuous assessment (performance in seminars and written weekly summaries), a term paper (3000 words), and an in‐class written essay dealing with the central question of the class: “How should we scientifically approach the questions that concern our behavioral evolutionary heritage?”

APY 651SEM: Graduate Survey of Physical Anthropology

Reg. #16040
Monday, 12:00-2:40pm
158 Spaulding Quad
Dr. Noreen von Cramon-Taubadel

This course is designed to provide a comprehensive introduction to the field of biological anthropology. Here we will review topics such as evolutionary theory, basic genetics, the evolution of the primates, human evolution, modern human diversity, the evolution of cognition and language, human social behavior, and the impacts of health and disease. The course will be taught via a mixture of lectures, class discussions and practical exercises.

APY 652SEM: Graduate Survey of Archaeology

Reg. #12902
Thursday, 11:00am-1:40pm
261 Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Timothy Chevral

Archaeology, as practiced in the North American academic framework, lies within the discipline of Anthropology, a social science, which means two things: it is broadly comparative, and its aim is to answer holistic meta-questions about the human condition rather than highlight only narrow interests. We all have these interests – they inform our research and shape the questions we want to answer, but future publications, grant proposals, and teaching all embody the social science philosophy: big idea first, case study second. To facilitate this reality in your own professional career, we begin by building an understanding of many world regions in comparative perspective.

That being said, the study of cultures on a hemispheric and ultimately a global level is fascinating and enlightening, permitting critical evaluation of our narrower interests in light of pan-human organization, livelihood, and social and cultural organization. The purpose of this course is to highlight multiple regions in the “Old World” – Africa, Eurasia, and the Pacific. We will spend some time looking at early ancestors, and then move into the Paleolithic, Mesolithic, Neolithic and Bronze Age, as well as other parallel eras that have different names in different regions.

APY 655LEC: Graduate Survey of Social Anthropology

Reg. #16403
Wednesday, 9:30am-12:10pm
261 Academic Center (Paley Library)
Dr. Jaume Franquesa

This course explores the main theoretical frameworks that have informed anthropology from the late nineteenth century until the 1980s rethinking of anthropological practices prompted by postmodernist critiques and the reckoning with colonial legacies. Although the course is primarily oriented to first-year anthropology postgraduate students, it will be of interest to anyone keen on learning about social theory and the history of ideas.