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It's All About the Culture

Cultural Anthropology

Cultural Anthropology
Physical Anthropology
Violence and Culture

Cultural anthropology is the study of diversity in humans in the present.  It is the largest subfield of anthropology and seeks to learn about the many different societies that still exist in the world today.  It begins with the presumption of our shared humanity and goes on to describe and try to understand the societies of the world without judging them--to see them "from the native's point of view."


Week 1 What is anthropology?                                   
            Required reading: Eller ch. 1
            Recommended reading:

"Shakespeare in the Bush" by Laura Bohannon

"Body Ritual among the Nacirema" by Horace Miner

Week 2 The Nature of Culture                                    
            Required reading: Eller ch. 2
            Recommended reading:

"Doing Fieldwork among the Yanomamo" by Napoleon Chagnon

Week 3 The Origins of Anthropology
           Required reading: Eller ch. 3
           Recommended reading:

Talk Origins: Exploring the Evidence for Evolution

Week 4 Language and Culture                
             Required reading: Eller ch. 4
             Recommended reading:

Dictionaries, Grammars, and Other Online Language Resources

Week 5 Individual and Culture: Personality and Gender, and Race
            and Ethnicity
            Required reading: Eller ch. 5 and 6
            Recommended reading:

Links to anthropology of gender

Week 6 Economic Systems, part 1                      
            Required reading: Eller ch. 7
            Recommended reading:

Marshall Sahlins "The Original Affluent Society"

Week 7 Economic Systems, part 2                      
            Required reading: Continue ch. 7
            Recommended reading:

Richard Lee "Eating Christmas in the Kalahari"

Week 8 Kinship and Marriage                                     
            Required reading: Eller ch.8 
            Recommended reading:

Understanding Kinship Terminology Systems

Week 9 Political Organization                                     
            Required reading: Eller ch. 9
            Recommended reading:

Gibbs "The Kpelle Moot"

Week 10 Religion                                                          
             Required reading: Eller ch. 10
             Recommended site:

Society for the Anthropology of Religion links and lists

Nelson "Field Statement on the Anthropology of Religion"

Week 11 Cultural Change and Acculturation                
              Required reading: Eller ch. 11
              Recommended reading:

Lauriston Sharp "Steel Axes for Stone Age Australians"

Week 12 Colonialism and its Legacies          
              Required reading: Eller ch. 12
              Recommended reading:


Week 13 Political Problems of New States:
              Ethnicity and Culture Conflict                 
              Required reading: Eller ch. 13
              Recommended reading:

Gevork Ter-Gabrielian "Strategies in 'Ethnic' Conflict"

Week 14 Economic Problems of New States:
              Development and Poverty                    
              Required reading: Eller ch. 14          
              Recommended site:

UNESCO Culture and Development

Week 15 The Survival of Culture and the Future of Culture
              Required reading: Eller ch. 15
              Recommended site:

CWIS Fourth World Documentation

Benjamin Barber "Jihad vs. McWorld"

Better Living Through Anthropology