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As courses are reviewed regularly the module list you choose from may vary from that shown here.
Anthropology in ActionStudents will be strongly encouraged to extend their knowledge and understanding of anthropological concerns and debates to consider how and when anthropology can make a significant contribution to a variety of different areas. The module will demonstrate to students the wide range of possible future careers open to anthropology graduates.
Anthropology of ArtA study of anthropological approaches to art, especially art produced by non-Western small-scale societies. The module investigates the possibility of cross-cultural aesthetics, the anthropology of museums, and the anthropological dimensions of contemporary art worlds globally.Anthropology of RitualRitual is often considered as exotic and as primarily related to religion. However, the anthropological approach requires that ritual be situated not only in religious but also in secular contexts, including for instance: politics and power relations, the construction of social identities and the reproduction and invention of 'tradition'.European SocietiesThe module shows the relevance of an anthropological approach to the study of European societies. It starts with the investigation of classic anthropological concepts at predominantly village or urban neighbourhood level. It then broadens out into wider more contemporary issues such as identity, nationalism, racism, the uses of history and ceremonial, tourism and the EU.Personhood, Gender and the Body in Contemporary JapanThis module introduces anthropological perspectives on personhood, gender and the body and examines these with reference to ethnographic material from Japan.Primates Adaptation and EvolutionExplores the similarities and differences between humans and other primates using a broad comparative approach to examine structure, physiology, molecular biology and evolutionary history. The hallmarks of humanity emerge against a background of detailed knowledge of other species to help trace our history of inheritance and to explore the reasons for our unique specialisations.
Primate SocietiesThere are some 400 species of primates other than humans, and this module explores the diversity of their social behaviour as a background for a better understanding of our own. This module uses a broad comparative approach to identify patterns of communication and social interaction among primates in relation to ecology, energetics, phylogeny, demography and tradition.Human EcologyIntroduces students to the study of human ecology, a core part of Biological Anthropology. Three main areas of human ecology are covered: resources, nutrition and disease.Research Methods in Social AnthropologyA practical module involving reading about methods used in social anthropology, but also considerable independent study in investigating appropriate methods for the student's own dissertation or other project.Social Anthropology TheoryThe emergence of social and cultural anthropology as a separate discipline is examined by reference to key works of leading contributors to the development of anthropological theory.Human Evolutionary Biology and GeographyConsiders the relationship between the various biological stages in human evolution, changes in society and behaviour as interpreted from the material record. Special emphasis will be given to developing an understanding of the role played by the palaeoenvironmental and palaeogeographical context of human evolution and behavioural change.Methods and Analysis in Biological AnthropologyIntroduces the methods and analysis used across several fields of biological anthropology. In addition to learning the main concepts of the scientific method and hypothesis testing, students will be introduced to the basic methods of several biological anthropological sub-disciplines including: morphometric analyses (including human diversity, forensics, and skeletal analyses), behavioural observation techniques, population genetics, and evolutionary systematics. Analytical techniques will be introduced in ultimate preparation for the dissertation.
Becoming Independent ResearchersDesigned to complement U20126 (Methods and Analysis in Biological Anthropology), the aim of this module is to allow students to develop the motivation, skills and discipline needed to become successful independent researchers.GeoarchaeologyGeoarchaeology uses analytical techniques, concepts and field methodologies from the earth sciences to understand the archaeological record.Conservation and Heritage ManagementExamines the evolution of heritage landscapes and their conservation and management through a study of the physical and human processes that have impacted upon them. This module is supported by a choice of field trips.Development and Social ChangeWhy are some countries rich and others poor? Does development help or hinder growth? This module examines geographical approaches to international development. Typical issues covered include: history of development; political geography, colonialism and theories of development; development and international financial institutions; poverty, famine, and hunger; social development and participatory and community-based approaches, and development as capacity building.
Political Geography: Place and PowerThis module offers an introduction to political geography and geopolitics, critically exploring the connections between place and power. The module will address both historical and ongoing debates on how to understand spatialities and materialities of political power. The module's aim is to facilitate critical interrogation of common assumptions about (geo)politics - highlighting not only the power of geography but also geographies of power. Throughout the module, ideas are explored in light of current events, stressing empirical relevance and real-world application of political geographical thought.
Cross-Cultural Perspectives in PsychologyExamines the relevance of cross-cultural material to key topics in psychology including emotion, socialization, the self, the development of cognitive skills, the relationship between language and thought, and intercultural communication.Gender and SocietyProvides an opportunity to put gender at the centre of social analysis. An understanding of the social processes that shape women's and men's lives in contemporary societies will be developed by exploring a range of theoretical approaches.'Race', Ethnicity and InequalityExplores questions of ‘racial’ and ethnic identity and the way in which ethnic origin shapes the experiences of ethnic minorities in the UK in a variety of different spheres including employment, education and the criminal justice system.Global SociologyExamines the origins, nature and consequences of global social change. The tensions between the global and the local will be examined as they relate to economic, political and cultural processes in contemporary societies. Competing explanations of the impact and significance of global change will be explored.
Reading Contemporary Ethnographyintroduces students to a variety of approaches to reading and writing ethnography, the primary method used by social anthropologists for documenting and analysing culture and society.Fantasy and the Supernatural in Japanese Cultureexamines the supernatural (ghosts, monsters, shapeshifters, e.g.) as a window into the role of imagination and narrative in the formation of Japanese folklore studies and anthropology. We follow the story through to present day anime, manga, gaming, and spiritualism. Environmental AnthropologyThis module takes a biosocial approach to understanding how humans inter-relate with their physical and biotic environment and the implications for human populations past, present and future.Anthropology of RelatednessThis module introduces students to the anthropology of relatedness; as well as exploring the broader economic and political forces that shape relationships within households and family networks.Anthropology of IndiaThis module offers students an in depth examination of everyday life in contemporary India through a focus on ethnographic material.
Minorities and Marginality: Class and Conflict in JapanExamines the historical and contemporary experiences and identities of various minority and marginal groups in Japan. It theorises the reproduction of marginality in society generally and compares ethnographically the experience of marginality in Japanese society with other societies.Human OsteologyThis module is designed to provide the student with an understanding of the analysis of human bones from archaeological sites, exploring theoretical and practical issues through a combination of lecture and laboratory-based sessions. Special emphasis will be placed on the study of palaeopathology and its use in studying populations within a comparative framework.Dawn of CivilisationFor 3 million years, early humans were nomadic hunter-gatherers whose prosperity was wholly dependant upon the ebb and flow of the climate. Then, around 10,000 years ago, there was a behavioural revolution that set into motion a series of exponential changes in human technology, subsistence, and organisation. This avalanche of development began in the region known as the Fertile Crescent, which includes the eastern Mediterranean, northern Arabia, and Mesopotamia. This module spans human history from 10,000 until 1,000 BC. We will review archaeological data, geography, the environmental record and mythology from the world’s first civilizations to understand how, where, why, and when they arose.Advanced Topics in Social AnthropologyExamines a range of recent critical debates and developments in anthropological theory.People and Other AnimalsHumans and other animals have a long history of interacting with each other. In this module we examine some of the complexities and contradictions evident in people-animal relationships through topics such as animals as food, companion animals and animals as ‘nature’.Cognitive EvolutionExplores the evolution of human intelligence, charting and evaluating the evidence for the development of key cognitive traits such as language, culture, tool use and symbolism. Grounded in the study of the fossil and archaeological records, the module adopts a multidisciplinary approach drawing on evolutionary psychology, cognitive science, philosophy, linguistics and primatology.Anthropology Independent StudyOffers students a flexible opportunity to explore an anthropological topic. Outputs can vary considerably and could include one or more of: an essay, annotated bibliography, ethnographic fieldwork journal, video/film or a long report.Material Lives, Money and Livelihoods in Contemporary Africaconsiders what anthropology can tell us about global processes of impoverishment, and discuss the strategies men and women in Africa adopt, as they seek to navigate fragile livelihoods through precarious economies.
Culture and CareExplores anthropological approaches to the human capacity for various kinds of care, nurturance, and social support.Primate ConservationIn this module, we cover the major challenges facing primates and develop strategies to help conserve our closest relatives. The student will be introduced to the order Primates, with a focus on the most threatened taxa.Molecular AnthropologyThis course in molecular anthropology covers basic population genetics, phylogenetics and molecular evolution. Contemporary molecular analysis is used to determine evolutionary links between ancient and modern humans, between contemporary human populations, as well as between humans and other (extinct and extant) primates.Anthropology DissertationAn opportunity for students to explore one topic in order to produce a dissertation demonstrating independent study at an advanced level.