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Arts and Sciences
In this Department

General Information

Upper Level Seminars and Honors Courses

Anthropology

Anthropology represents a broad field of study encompassing four subdivisions: cultural anthropology, linguistic anthropology, prehistoric archeology, and biological anthropology. Courses listed below offer comprehensive approaches to anthropology's diverse subject matter and provide an important component of a liberal arts education for both majors and non-majors. A major will gain excellent preparation for graduate study in anthropology or as part of a pre-professional education. Additionally, anthropology majors can gain preparation for a wide variety of careers. Students majoring in anthropology are strongly urged to pursue work beyond the introductory level (101, 102, 103) in each of the subfields.

Major.
A major in anthropology consists of the following:

1. a. A minimum of 24 hours in the Department, including Anthropology 101, 102, 103.

    b. Anthropology 353.

    c. At least one seminar in Anthropology.

At least 15 of the 24 hours required for the major must be from courses above the 100 level.


2. Courses in several other disciplines, including those in the social and natural sciences and the humanities, complement a major in Anthropology. The particular pattern of courses chosen will vary, depending on the plans and interests of the students. The particular pattern should be worked out in close consultation with the major advisor.


Minor. A minor in anthropology consists of 15 hours of course work in which at least nine hours derive from courses at the 200 level or above. No more than three transfer credits can be counted in a minor, and two of the three introductory courses must be included.

Honors. The department invites a small number of qualified majors to participate in the honors program. Honors work may begin as early as the sixth semester or may commence at the beginning of the senior year. Students may receive from two to six hours of credit per semester of honors. Honors work requires a thesis based on original research and an oral examination on the thesis.

Off-Campus Programs for Credit. Summer fieldwork in projects sponsored by Oberlin College or by other institutions is encouraged. Such projects may be undertaken in archeology, ethnography, or linguistics. By approval of the department, students may count a maximum of six hours of such work toward the major. Students interested in archeological projects should contact Ms. Grimm. Those interested in ethnographic projects should contact Mr. Glazier. Those interested in linguistics should contact Ms. Pagliai. Students interested in anthropology credit for programs sponsored by the Great Lakes Colleges Association should also speak with the chair.

Gallaudet Exchange Program. The department sponsors an exchange program with Gallaudet University, the nation's only liberal arts college for the deaf, located in Washington, DC. In a school of about 500 students, the program offers a unique opportunity for students interested in communication disorders, deaf education, and related issues. The program is open to both majors and non-majors. Sophomores and juniors with good academic standing are eligible to apply. The exchange is for one semester and students receive transfer credit toward their degree at Oberlin College. Tuition is normally billed by Oberlin College; room and board by Gallaudet. Some students find Exco classes offered in sign language to be good preparation for a semester at Gallaudet.
Students interested in this program should speak with Mr. Glazier. Catalogs and applications should be requested directly from Gallaudet University, 800 Florida Avenue, N.E., Washington, DC 20001-3695. When writing to Gallaudet, request an application which states "Oberlin Exchange Program." Each student works his/her own way through the application process and can do so in consultation with Mr. Glazier.

Transfer of Credit. Students transferring credits in anthropology from courses taken at other institutions and/or from off-campus programs such as summer field work may apply a maximum of six credit hours toward the major with the approval of the department chair.


Private Reading. Students may schedule a reading course during their junior or senior years in accord with college rules on private readings. No more than one reading course may be taken in any one semester.

Cross-referenced courses.
The following courses not in the Anthropology Department will be accepted for credit toward the Anthropology major. See the Department/Program in which the courses are listed for full description.

EAST 260 Colonialism/Postcolonialism in East Asia

EAST 262 Asia's Modern Wars



In this Department

General Information

Introductory Courses

Upper Level Seminars and Honors Courses

Introductory Courses

FYSP 180. The Idea of 'the Folk' 3 hours

3SS, CD, WRi

First Semester. For description, please see "First-Year Seminar Program" in this catalog. Enrollment Limit: 14.

Mr. Goldsmith


101. Introduction to Cultural Anthropology 3 hours

3SS, CD

First and Second Semester. An introduction to the nature of cultural anthropology through an examination of basic concepts, methods, and theories that anthropologists employ in order to understand the unity and diversity of human thought and action cross-culturally. Language and culture, kinship and the family, politics and conflict, religion and belief, and the impact of social change and globalization on traditional institutions are some of the topics to be considered in a range of ethnographic contexts. Enrollment Limit: 40.

Mr. Glazier, Ms. Pagliai, Mr. Reyes-Ruiz


102. Human Origins (Lecture Only) 3 hours

3SS, CD

Second Semester. This course focuses on paleoanthropology and is an introduction to the evolutionary development of humans. We will examine biological relationships between humans and other primates, primate behavior and classification, and the fossil evidence for human evolution. Emphasis will be placed on the methods used in the study of prehistoric human biological and cultural development. Enrollment Limit: 40.

Ms. Grimm


103. Introduction to Archeology 3 hours

3SS, CD

First Semester. An introduction to the subfield of anthropology concerned with past human cultures. A basic objective is to acquaint students with both the methods and techniques that archeologists employ in the study and reconstruction of prehistoric societies. Examples will be drawn from a variety of archeological situations ranging from simple hunting and gathering societies to complex chiefdoms and states. Matters of contemporary debate in the area of archeology and the public will also be considered. Enrollment Limit: 40.

Ms. Grimm


112. Human Origins (Laboratory only) 1 hour
1SS

Second Semester. Second Half Module accompanies ANTH 102. Laboratory exercises, discussions, and lab reports are designed to familiarize students with morphology and systematics of the major primate and early human fossil groups. Co-requisite: ANTH 102. Enrollment Limit: 20.

Ms. Grimm


113. Introduction to Archeology (Laboratory only) 1 hour

1SS

First Semester. Second Half Module accompanies ANTH 103. Laboratory exercises. Discussions and lab reports are designed to familiarize students with basic methods used in the analysis of archeological materials commonly recovered in excavation such as chipped and ground stone artifacts, ceramics, shell, faunal remains and historical artifacts. Co-requisite: ANTH 103. Enrollment Limit: 20.

Ms. Grimm



In this Department

General Information

Intermediate Courses

Upper Level Seminars and Honors Courses

Intermediate Courses


201. Ecological Knowledge, History, and the Nonhuman in the Upper Amazon 1 hour
1SS

Second Semester. One Week Module. How do dogs dream? Can words ever capture what really happens in the forest? Why are jaguars like powerful whites? These questions are of vital importance for Amazonians because their livelihood depends on the ability to successfully engage with the myriad beings that inhabit the forest. Examining such questions, by means of an in-depth study of the ecological understandings and practices of the Runa of Ecuador's Upper Amazon, will help us better understand current debates regarding the ways in which culture and nature become entangled. Note: CR/NE grading. Enrollment Limit: 60.

Mr. Kohn


215. Art, Language and Society 3 hours

3SS

Next offered 2004-2005.


218. Anthropology and Cultural Studies: The Latin(o) American Case 3 hours

3SS

First Semester. Drawing from the Anthropology and Cultural Studies literature, this course will focus on the pan-national Latino culture that emerged in the 20th century as a result of cultural exchanges, technological advances, economic processes and the formation of diasporic communities of Latin Americans in the United States and other metropolitan centers. Theoretically, we will focus on the impact of the media in the articulation of collective identities. Enrollment Limit: 30.

Mr. Reyes-Ruiz


204. Introduction to Linguistic Anthropology 3 hours

3SS

Next offered 2004-2005.


232. Native Americans: Contemporary Issues 2 hours

3SS

Second Semester. Second Half Module. This course focuses on a selected number of issues facing North American Indians in the present. These include land rights, protection of the environment, creation of urban communities, challenges of economic development in the reservations, repatriation and reburial movement, stances vis-à-vis the exploitation of Native American images in the market economy, creation of educational programs in the reservations, revitalization movements, and others. The course emphasizes the strategies and conditions of political and cultural survival vis-a-vis the incorporation into the world system. Particular attention is given to providing a "Native voice" or perspective to the discussion by including video viewing and presentations by invited speakers. Prerequisite: One introductory course (100 level) in Anthropology or equivalent. Enrollment Limit: 25.

Ms. Pagliai

251. Language in Culture and Society 3 hours

3SS, CD

First Semester. Study of the relationship between language and culture and of the use of languages in socio-cultural context. Attention is focused on ethnosemantic studies of folk classification systems (cognition, taxonomy, meaning, universals) and sociolinguistic studies of variation in linguistic usage in different social and cultural circumstances (speech acts, speech events, code switching, social meaning). Prerequisite: One introductory course (100 level) in Anthropology or consent of instructor. Enrollment Limit: 40.

Ms. Pagliai


262. Ancient Civilizations of the New World: The Maya 3 hours

3SS, WR

First Semester. Over the past 25 years, archeologists have achieved dramatically new understandings of Ancient Maya (ca. A.D. 0-1200) culture in Central America as a result of recent excavations and advances in deciphering the Maya hieroglyphic writing system. It is now possible to detail dynastic histories from many different Maya kingdoms and to study the interactions of these polities through evidence of marriage alliances, trade, and warfare. Current theories about the evolution of complex preindustrial societies will be considered as we examine Maya art, architecture, religion, economics, and socio-political organization. Prerequisite: ANTH 103 preferred. Enrollment Limit: 25.

Ms. Grimm


286. Culture, Symbol and Meaning 3 hours

3SS, CD, WR

Next offered 2004-2005.


288. Immigrant America: Then and Now 3 hours

3SS, CD, WR

Second Semester. The beginning and end of the 20th century mark two periods of large-scale immigration to the United States, each bringing profound changes to the character of the nation. From 1900 until 1924, millions of newcomers from southern and eastern Europe arrived. Immigration since 1965 has drawn people mostly from Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean. This course examines the history of immigration to the United States and then compares the two periods of immigration in terms of social, economic, and cultural consequences, assimilation and cultural persistence, linguistic and environmental implications, immigration advocacy and resistance, welfare and entrepreneurship, and immigrant communities in relationship to the rest of the nation, particularly to African Americans. Prerequisite: ANTH 101 or prior work in American History of Sociology. Enrollment Limit: 30.

Mr. Glazier


292. Museum Anthropology 3 hours

3SS, CD, WR

Second Semester. Students will assist in an on-going project to make the Department's ethnographic collections from Africa, Asia, and the Pacific available on line. This will involve cataloging and digital imaging objects as well as research in the College archives and on the WWW. Readings about the history and significance of such collecting activity will be discussed as well. Priority will be given to majors in Anthropology and Archeological Studies and others with a particular interest in museum studies. Consent of instructor required. Enrollment Limit: 15.

Ms. Grimm

353. Culture Theory 3 hours

3SS, CD, WR

First Semester. A critical examination of major issues in the study of culture over the past century and a quarter through a discussion of such theoretical topics as cultural evolution and neo-evolution, materialism and cultural ecology, functionalism and ecosystems theory, interpretive and symbolic anthropology, structuralism, and political economy. The role of ethnography, the scientific and humanistic dimensions of anthropology, and the relationships between various theories are also considered. Recent multicultural and postmodernist efforts at cultural explanation on the part of anthropologists and other scholars will be examined. Prerequisites: Junior- or senior-level standing, ANTH 101, and one additional course in anthropology. Enrollment Limit: 25.

Mr. Glazier


391. Practicum in Anthropology 2-3 hours

2-3SS

Junior or senior majors in the department may receive up to three hours of credit for applied fieldwork in anthropology. The work should be carried out in connection with a systematic course of reading and the writing of a paper on the topic of the project. The purpose of the paper is to tie the field experience to relevant anthropological principles. The program should be worked out in advance with a department faculty sponsor: Consent of instructor required.

Ms. Pagliai, Mr. Glazier, Ms. Grimm




In this Department

General Information

Upper Level Seminars and Honors Courses

Upper-Level Seminars and Honors Courses
Upper-level seminars are open to juniors and seniors who have completed four courses in anthropology. In some instances this requirement will be reduced for non-majors otherwise qualified. Please note also specific course prerequisites for some seminars. Enrollment Limit: 10 per seminar.


408. Seminar on Current Issues in Anthropology: Postmodernism 3 hours

3SS, CD, WR

Second Semester. This seminar will explore postmodernism and its impact on anthropology over the last two decades. The class will examine the assumptions underlying the postmodernist perspective, the relationship of postmodernism to empirical and scientific anthropology, the nature of research and writing produced in a postmodernist framework, and how conceptions of ethnography and the role of the anthropologist have changed. Related issues concerning ethics and theory vs. practice will also be considered. Consent of instructor required. Enrollment Limit: 10.

Mr. Glazier


415. Internships in Teaching 1-2 hours

1-2SS

Qualified seniors who wish to assist in the teaching of specific courses may, upon consent of the instructor, achieve one or two credits for their work in such courses. Assistance with laboratory sessions, data analysis, and the research concerns of students in the class compose the major activities of the teaching internships. Consent of instructor required.
Ms. Pagliai, Mr. Glazier, Ms. Grimm
450. Seminar on Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective 3 hours

3SS

Next offered 2004-2005.


463. Seminar in Archeology: By land and by sea 3 hours
Theories on the colonization of the Americas in late Ice Age times

3SS, CD, WR

Next offered 2004-2005

468. Seminar: Language and Cognition 3 hours

3SS

Second Semester. This course traces the historical evolution of theoretical attempts to define the relationship between language and thought, moving from the classic works by Sapir and Whorf and the successive debates on them, through the work of ethnolinguists and ethnoscientists, to contemporary approaches. We will explore the legacy of the Cognitive school in linguistic anthropology from its emergence until today, examining its basic propositions and looking forward to possible applications in future studies. Finally, we will discuss more recent work on metaphors and the conceptual structures that influence our behavior and thought. Prerequisites: ANTH 101 and one additional course in anthropology, or consent of instructor. Enrollment Limit: 10.

Ms. Pagliai


490. Junior Year Honors 2-3 hours

2-3SS

Sections will be offered by Mr. Glazier, Ms. Pagliai, and Ms. Grimm. Prerequisite: Open only to second semester junior majors. Consent of instructor required.


491. Senior Year Honors 2-6 hours

2-6SS

Sections will be offered by Mr. Glazier, Ms. Pagliai, and Ms. Grimm. Consent of instructor required.


995. Private Reading 1-3 hours

1-3SS

Sections will be offered by Mr. Glazier, Ms. Grimm, Ms. Pagliai, and Mr. Reyes-Ruiz. Consent of instructor required.
    
   
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