ANT 201

Introduction to Anthropology


Agustin Fuentes

An introduction to anthropology and key topics in becoming and being human. Anthropology examines human experience through diverse lenses integrating biology, ecology, language, history, philosophy, and the day to day lives of peoples from across the globe. Anthropology has things to say about being human, it seeks to make the familiar a bit strange and the strange quite familiar. We will take critical reflexive and reflective approaches in asking about key aspects of being human (like war/peace; race/racism; sex/gender; childhood/parenting; religion and the human imagination; human relations to other species).Two lectures, one preceptorial.

ANT 206 / AFS 206

Human Evolution


Agustin Fuentes

An assessment and understanding of the evolutionary history and processes in our lineage over the last 7 to 10 million years, with a focus on the ~2.5 million year history of our own genus (Homo).This outline of the history of our lineage offers an anthropological and evolutionary context for what it means to be human today. Two lectures, one preceptorial.

ANT 215 / EEB 315

Human Adaptation


Human adaptation focuses on human anatomy and behavior from an evolutionary perspective. Lectures and weekly laboratory sessions focus on the evolution of the human brain, dentition, and skeleton to provide students with a practical understanding of the anatomy and function of the human body and its evolution, as well as some of its biological limitations. No science background required. Two 90-minute lectures, one three-hour laboratory.

ANT 219 / ENV 219

Catastrophes across Cultures: The Anthropology of Disaster


Ryo Morimoto

What is the relationship between "catastrophe" and human beings, and how has "catastrophe" influenced the way we live in the world now? This course investigates various types of catastrophes/disasters around the world by mobilizing a variety of theoretical frameworks and case studies in the social sciences. The course uses an anthropological perspective as its principal lens to comparatively observe often forgotten historical calamities throughout the world. The course is designed to explore the intersection between catastrophe and culture and how catastrophic events can be a window through which to critically analyze society and vice versa.

ANT 240 / HUM 240

Medical Anthropology


João Biehl

Exploration of cross-cultural constructions of sickness, disease, health, and healing interrogates our basic ethical, moral, and political positions. Our healing and disease models derive from specific cultural assumptions about society, gender, class, age, ethnicity, and race. Categories of disease from one culture can compromise ethical positions held by another. We pursue the moral implications of a critique of medical development and the political and ethical implications of treating Western medicine as ethnoscience as well as universal truth. One 90-minute lecture, one 90-minute class.

ANT 300

Ethnography, Evidence and Experience


This course tackles anthropological ways of knowing and explores the evidentiary power of ethnography to advance our understanding of diverse lifeworlds. As students engage classic theoretical texts and contemporary ethnographies, they are introduced to the analytical and writing skills necessary to pursue their own independent anthropological studies: how to develop a research question, locate and analyze relevant sources, situate their interests and concerns in relation to key anthropological debates and concepts, and consider the potential of ethnographic storytelling to expand ethical and political imagination.

ANT 301

The Ethnographer's Craft


This course is an introduction to doing ethnographic fieldwork. Class sessions alternate between discussions of key issues and questions in the theory and practice of ethnography and workshops devoted to fieldwork exercises: participant observation, interviewing, fieldnotes, oral history, multi-modal and virtual ethnographic methods; as well as debates over research ethics and regulatory ethics. Students will build skills to design and conduct ethnographic research, while developing a critical appreciation of the possibilities and limits of ethnographic research to help them understand and engage with the world.

ANT 303

Economic Experience in Cultural Context


Rena S. Lederman

This course explores the social and cultural contexts of economic experience in the US and around the world. It considers how the consumption, production, and circulation of goods--today and in times past--become invested with personal and collective meanings. It pays special attention to symbolic and political dimensions of work, property (material, intellectual, and cultural), wealth, and "taste" (i.e., needs and wants). Additionally, course participants do a bit of anthropological fieldwork by learning to draw everyday experiences systematically into conversation with academic sources.

ANT 304

Political Anthropology


A cross-cultural examination of collective action, power, authority and legitimacy. Topics will include the diversity of systems of leadership and decision making, the sociocultural contexts of egalitarianism and hierarchy, contemporary contests over power-sharing and state legitimacy, forms of power outside the state, and human rights struggles. One three-hour seminar.

ANT 305 / HLS 305

Psychological Anthropology


Elizabeth Anne Davis

This seminar addresses the social relations in which mental health, mental illness, and psycho-medical knowledge are entangled and produced. We will engage various cross-cultural approaches to mental conflicts and pathologies: psychoanalysis, ethnopsychology, biomedical psychiatry, transcultural psychiatry, and religious and "alternative" practices of diagnosis and healing. Drawing on ethnographic and clinical studies from Greek and other contexts, we will examine the role of culture in determining lines between normal and pathological, and consider the intertwining of psyche and body in human experience and behavior.

ANT 306

Current Issues in Anthropology


A course taught by different members of the department and visiting faculty on various subjects not normally taught in regular courses.

ANT 310

Fundamentals of Biological Anthropology


Agustin Fuentes

A survey of current data and debates in evolutionary theory, molecular anthropology, primate biology and behavior, primate and human evolution, and modern human biology and adaptation. One three-hour seminar.

EAS 312 / ANT 312

Mind, Body, and Bioethics in Japan and Beyond


Amy Beth Borovoy

The seminar will examine key concepts of the mind, the body, and the nature-culture distinction. We will study these issues in the context of Japanese beliefs about the good society, making connections between "lay culture," Japanese notions of social democracy, and "science culture." Topics include: styles of care for the mentally ill, the politics of disability, notions of human life and death, responses to bio-technology, the management of human materials (such as organs), cultural definitions of addiction and "co-dependency," and the ethics of human enhancement.

ANT 314 / ENE 314 / AFS 314

The Anthropology of Development


Carolyn M. Rouse

Why do development projects fail? This course examines why well-meaning development experts get it wrong. It looks closely at what anthropologists mean by culture and why most development experts fail to attend to the cultural forces that hold communities together. By examining development projects from South Asia to the United States, students learn the relevance of exchange relations, genealogies, power, religion, and indigenous law.

EAS 225 / ANT 323

Japanese Society and Culture


Amy Beth Borovoy

An exploration of Japanese labor, gender and feminism, crime and social control, race and notions of homogeneity, nationalism and youth culture. The course considers Japan's struggle to come to terms with the West while at the same time integrating its past. It also looks at American misperceptions of Japanese society and economics. Two lectures, one preceptorial.

ANT 326 / ECS 315 / TRA 326

Language, Identity, Power


Serguei Alex. Oushakine

Language determines our expressive capacities, represents our identities, and connects us with each other across various platforms and cultures.This course introduces classical and contemporary approaches to studying language, focusing on three main areas: 1) language as a system of rules and regulations ("structure"), 2) language as a symbolic mechanism through which individuals and groups mark their presence ("identity") and 3) language as a means of communication ("sign"). In addition to this, the course examines various ways through which language molds our individual selves: from organizing dreams and desires to shaping autobiographies.

ANT 330

The Rights of Indigenous Peoples


Using American Indian sovereignty, Australian Aborigine land claims, the Canadian Bill of Rights, the Maori Treaty of Waitangi, and various international conventions, students will consider whether there is a fundamental right to cultural integrity, and the historical, legal, and ethical implications posed by the relations between modern states and their indigenous populations. One 90-minute lecture, one 90-minute class.

ANT 336

The Anthropology of Selected Regions


The significant impact of peoples of particular regions on the development of anthropological theory, method, and sensibility. Special attention to the dynamic precolonial history of the region and to political and religious movements in the contemporary context of rapid socioeconomic change.

ANT 340

Medicine and the Humanities


A course taught by different members of the department or visiting faculty on various subjects that connect student interests in the humanities with the sub-field of medical anthropology.

ANT 341

The Anthropology of Gender


Comparative perspectives on sexual divisions of labor, sex-based equality and inequality, and the cultural construction of "male'' and "female.'' Analysis of gender symbolism in myth and ritual, and of patterns of change in the political participation and power of the sexes. Two 90-minute lectures with discussion.

ANT 342

The Anthropology of Law


This course draws upon core anthropological studies of law to investigate conceptions, operations, and transformations of law across Western and non-Western societies. The course also draws upon legal theory and exemplary court cases to probe diverse forms of judicial reasoning and activism. How do legal concepts and categories--such as rights, duties, obligations, liabilities, risks, injuries, evidence, redress, and even personhood--come to appear as fundamental, natural, or universal? How are seemingly essential natures of law, in fact, constructed and produced and to which social and political effect?

THR 300 / COM 359 / ENG 373 / ANT 359

Acting, Being, Doing, and Making: Introduction to Performance Studies


Rhaisa Williams, Stacy E. Wolf

A hands-on approach to this interdisciplinary field. We will apply key readings in performance theory to space and time-based events, at sites ranging from theatre, experimental art, and film, to community celebrations, sport events, and restaurant dining. We will observe people's behavior in everyday life as performance and discuss the "self" through the performativity of one's gender, race, class, ability, and more. We will also practice ethnographic methods to collect stories to adapt for performance and address the role of the participant-observer, thinking about ethics and the social responsibilities of this work.

ANT 360 / CHV 360

Ethics in Context: Uses and Abuses of Deception and Disclosure


Rena S. Lederman

Magic tricks delight us; biomedicine and human sciences use deception in research (e.g., placeboes); and everyday politeness may obscure painful truths. With deception and disclosure as springboards, this course explores the contextual ambiguity of personal and professional ethics, with special attention to knowledge control. Topics include: social fictions in daily life across cultures; the tangled histories of science, stage magic, and movies; ethically controversial practices in popular culture ("reality" TV, fake news), the arts (fictive memoirs), academia (sharing/plagiarizing), self presentation (racial and sexual passing), and more.

ART 267 / LAS 267 / ANT 366

Mesoamerican Art


Bryan R. Just

This course acquaints students with the art, architecture, and archaeology of ancient Mexico and Central America. The course considers a wide range of cultures spanning from the first arrival of humans at the end of the Upper Paleolithic period through the 16th century Spanish invasion. Major culture groups to be considered include Olmec, Teotihuacan, Maya, Zapotec, and Aztec. Precepts will include theoretically-focused discussions, debate regarding contested scholarly interpretations, and hands-on work with objects at the Princeton University Art Museum. For department majors, this course satisfies the Group 1 distribution requirement.

ANT 390

Histories of Anthropological Theory


This course starts with discussion of the current state of affairs in anthropological theory to ask what lines of thought and practice got us to where we are today. This includes situating anthropological theory within broader socioeconomic and political currents and exploring how poststructuralism, postcolonial theory, Black studies, and feminism reshaped the discipline in a variety of ways. Throughout the course, students will develop a critical set of skills to creatively harness the analytic power of theory as they engage pressing contemporary issues and seek to mobilize anthropological theory in the writing of their independent work.