1. An introduction to social anthropology: key concepts
- Culture, society, identity
- Your culture, your society
- Dealing with difference
- Evaluating human developments and differences
- Representation and derivation: anthropology of whom, from where, and why?
2. Kinship: given, or made?
- Understanding kinship: an introduction to key ideas and terminology
- Kinship diagrams: exploring your kinship
- Case studies: Australia and the UK
- Wombs for rent and dead sperm: New reproductive technologies and kinship in the twenty-first century
3. Witchcraft, religion and science: making sense of the world
- Witchcraft and rationality: how do we make sense of misfortune?
- Scientific rationality and the rationality of witchcraft
- Case study: The Azande
- Structural functionalism: What is the social function of witchcraft in Azande society?
- Reflecting on your worldview
4. Gift exchange: is there such a thing as a free gift?
- Gift giving in your culture
- Understanding the structure of gift exchange
- Case study: Malinowski and the kula ring of the Trobriand Islands
- Analysing your own circles of gift exchange
5. Ritual and rites of passage: defining social status
- Ritual and rites of passage: defining the terms
- Understanding ritual
- Circumcision, rites of manhood and coming of age
- Anthropological theories for understanding ritual: structural functionalism, symbolism and the case study of the Ndembu
- Analysing your own rites of passage
6. Political anthropology: power, authority and patterns of social organisation
- Understanding the politics of your society
- Anthropological perspectives of power and political organisation
- Case studies: The Nuer and Melanesia
- Case studies: The Nuer in the present
- Build-your-own political structure
7. Humans and the environment: the anthropology of landscape
- An ethnographic view of landscape
- Nature and culture: the environment from an anthropological perspective
- Multiple meanings of landscape
- Anthropocentricity and consuming the landscape
- Individual experiences of landscape
8. Personhood: what defines the category 'person'?
- What makes a person?
- Understanding personhood
- Case study: The Gahuku Gama
- Personhood and human rights: forum debate
9. Sex and gender: biology, identity and society
- Markers of gender: the ‘female’ form
- Feminist anthropology and the anthropology of gender
- Case study: Third genders
- Discussion: is biological sex also socially constructed?
- The female form … revisited
10. Ethnicity and globalisation: understanding hyperdiversity
- Globalisation and ethnicity: defining the terms
- Understanding ethnicity and globalisation
- Does globalisation make ethnicity more or less important?
- Globalisation: social implications
- Reflections on the course
We strongly recommend that you try to find a little time each week to engage in the online conversations (at times that are convenient to you) as the forums are an integral, and very rewarding, part of the course and the online learning experience.