ANTH Courses

This page lists all the anthropology (ANTH) courses offered by the Department of Anthropology. This information is also listed in the UBC Calendar. Not all courses are offered every year. For a complete list of courses in the current term, consult the course schedule. Course content varies depending on the instructor, so consult the list of current course details as you plan your schedule.

2016-2017 ANTH Courses Banner

ANTH: Lower Level Courses

Basic concepts and methods of anthropology; culture and race; comparative study of social systems, religion, symbolism, art, and other institutions. Examples are drawn from a variety of cultures.

A survey of basic concepts and procedures in the cross-cultural study of human societies.
Prerequisite: ANTH 100.

An introduction to the study of the relations between ethnic groups and of the interplay between ethnicity and other social factors. The course examines such concepts as: ethnicity, racism, prejudice, discrimination, assimilation, and multiculturalism. Ordinarily the course deals with ethnic groups in British Columbia, and students are expected to carry out elementary research projects. Equivalency: SOCI 201.

Cultural background to contemporary events; problems of nationalism and regional conflicts, economic and social development, gender, religion and social change. Course may stress a different region of the world in different years.

An anthropological exploration of how the collection, cultivation and consumption of food shapes human society and culture.

An anthropological exploration of how understandings of sex and gender are culturally and historically shaped.

A cross-cultural comparison of family and kinship to provide an understanding of variations in the structure and meaning of marriage relations; forms of domestic organization; and the sexual division of labour, property, and inheritance.

The study of communication; the relation between communication and its cultural context with emphasis on verbal and non-verbal communication, cross-cultural communication, and cultural differences in the use of oral, literate, and electronic media.

The cultures, languages, and resources of First Nations, with anthropological perspectives on colonization and development.

Forms and styles of indigenous expressive arts, and their current place in the lives of Indigenous Peoples. Prerequisite: ANTH 220 is recommended.

An examination of health and illness, in their social and cultural contexts.

An examination of health and illness, in their social and cultural The critical study of anthropology museums as social institutions and material culture research and classification from the late 19th century to the present day.


ANTH: Upper Year Courses (300 Level)

Contemporary approaches to society and culture in anthropology. Prerequisite: ANTH 200 is recommended.

Eurasia, including the Russian Federation, Central Asia, and Mongolia, with an emphasis on issues of power, identities, and transnational mobility in the region.

A specialized study of ethnographic and theoretical problems relating to South Asia.

A specialized study of ethnographic and theoretical problems in one area. Different culture areas or regions may be selected each term. Consult the Department for this year's offerings.

Specialized study of ethnographic and theoretical problems of the region.

An exploration of ethnographic, topical, and theoretical issues.

An exploration of ethnographic, topical, and theoretical issues.

Theoretical approaches to, and the ethnographic study of, gender in cross-cultural contexts.

Japanese culture and society: patterns of organization, value systems, family, education, work, minorities and diversity, harmony and conflict, urban/rural differences, gender, sexuality, youth, tradition, continuity, change, and future prospects.

Comparative study of political organization; leadership and non-centralized and centralized political systems.

A survey of the ethnographic uses of language data and the techniques of linguistic analysis.

Anthropological perspectives on contemporary issues of public policy, law, and political activity, as they affect the place of First Nations people in British Columbia and Canada. Prerequisite: ANTH 220 is recommended.

A comparative study of rural peoples (such as small-scale horticulturists, artisans and craft workers, peasants, fisherfolk, or industrial/manufacturing workers) in the global economy.

Anthropological perspectives on art, aesthetics, and expressive culture.

Who controls meaning? Are worlds spoken into existence? This course explores the dynamic power of oral expression, its many forms, meanings and consequences within diverse cultural and socio-political contexts.

A sociolinguistic examination of the role of language in articulating, maintaining, and subverting power relations in society.

Museums, galleries, monuments, and other cultural institutions' relations to our perception of history and geography.

Major cultural groupings in Polynesia and Micronesia, emphasizing both traditional cultures and the incorporation of the region into modern international institutions.

Major cultural groupings in Melanesia, emphasizing both traditional cultures and the incorporation of the region into modern international institutions.

Indigenous peoples of Latin America, emphasizing both pre-Columbian cultural traditions and socioeconomic and cultural changes from the Colonial period to the present.

Analysis of the relations between human societies and the ecological aspects of their environment (including technology, society, and ideology). Previously ANTH 460.

Analysis of contemporary mass media and of the anthropological use of media (photography, film, digital audio and video, etc.).


ANTH: Upper Year Courses (400 Level)

The development of anthropological theory and practice in institutional contexts.
Prerequisite: ANTH 300.

Anthropological perspectives of indigenous cultures and societies of North America.
Prerequisite: ANTH 329 is recommended.

Advanced studies in the ethnography of China, premodern and contemporary. Topics may include kinship, rural and urban social structure, stratification and mobility, religion, national power structures, and social change in Chinese society.

An advanced study of ethnographic and theoretical problems. A different region may be studied each term.

An examination of relationships between indigenous people and nation states in Greenland, Canada, Alaska and Siberia, using ethnographic methods.

An examination of field work as the basic setting for ethnographic research. Research design; relationships with study participants, field techniques, and data analysis and presentation.

Intensive examination and application of selected methods of ethnographic data-collection, e.g., visual anthropology, anthropological interviewing, genealogies, ethnographic semantics, life histories, oral traditions. Consult department for current description.

Knowledge for what? Knowledge for whom? A critical examination of applied research that includes dialogues about ethics, activism, advocacy and collaboration. Course materials draw from social and political projects within indigenous contexts.

Contemporary theory employed in the anthropological study of gender.

Prerequisite: ANTH 312.

A cross-cultural survey of ways of defining family relationships and kinship organizations, including theoretical analysis as well as case studies.

Theories on the global flow of people, commodities, images, and ideas with critical ethnographic attention to the different ways people respond to globalization.

Comparative study of religious beliefs, practices, and movements; relations between religious, social, and political institutions; religion as a force for stability and change; anthropological/sociological theories of religion.

Ethnographies about Japan and processes of conducting fieldwork on Japan, covering topics such as work, leisure, identity, tradition, popular culture, rural/urban lifestyles, gender, sexuality, internationalization.

Prerequisite: One of ANTH 215, ANTH 315.

The relationships between linguistic and cultural phenomena; how language affects normative and cognitive systems of thought and behaviour.

Prerequisite: One of ANTH 100, LING 200. May be taken as co-requisites.

Applications of statistical techniques to quantitative and qualitative data in Anthropology.

An anthropological understanding of the spatial dimensions of social practice, and the relationships of space to culture, history, and power.

The nature of subsistence systems antedating or alternative to modern commercial systems. Introductory survey with basic readings; focus on problems such as the development of complex cultures without agriculture, the ambiguity of hunting and gathering, agricultural and other "intensification", "orchestration" of the use of adjacent microenvironments. Of interest to students of archaeology, anthropology and cultural geography.

Section 001 - Charles Menzies (2016 - 2017):
This course will focus upon Fishing, Hunting, and Plant Harvesting. This course is designed to explore ancestral and contemporary Indigenous food production systems highlighting Indigenous resilience. The course is on the approved list for the First Nations Studies program and would be relevant to students interested in resource management and environmental studies.


Anthropological perspectives on health, illness, and disability as represented by classic and contemporary research in selected topics in medical anthropology including disease and human evolution, illness and human ecology, culture and epidemiology, ethnomedical systems, the relationship between folk and biomedicine and the cultural construction and social organization of health care, illness and disability. Specific content will vary from year to year. Consult the Department brochure.
Prerequisite: One of ANTH 100, SOCI 100.

A medical anthropological perspective on medical science, technology, translational research, and clinical practice, in laboratory, clinic, family, social, and cultural contexts. Topics include explanatory models of health, acute and chronic illness, disability; social and cultural dimensions genetics; clinical interaction.

Includes examination of the social and cultural dimensions of specific life-threatening emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases, the political economy of health, cultural interpretations of illness and healing, medical pluralism, therapy management, and the cultural construction of efficacy.

Management of museum collections and their public presentation, addressing questions of access, collaboration, and cultural property. The public interpretation of anthropological concepts and materials utilizing the programs and facilities of the Museum of Anthropology.

Prerequisite: ANTH 341.

The public presentation and interpretation of anthropological concepts and materials utilizing the programs and facilities of the Museum of Anthropology.

Prerequisite: ANTH 341. Permission of the department is also acceptable.

General reading and/or a research undertaking, with the agreement, and under the supervision, of a Department faculty member selected by the student. No more than six credits of Directed Studies may be taken for credit toward the Major or Honours program..

Will usually require the presentation of at least one research paper.

Conservation of organic materials within a museum environment; the nature of materials, mechanisms of deterioration and principles of preventive conservation. Recommended for students intending to work with cultural materials.

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor required.

Analysis of the concepts of ecological anthropology via the medium of local ecological knowledge. ANTH 360 is recommended as background.

Section 001 - Charles Menzies (2016 - 2017):
This course is designed to explore ancestral and contemporary Indigenous food production systems highlighting Indigenous resilience. The course is on the approved list for the First Nations Studies program and would be relevant to students interested in resource management and environmental studies.

May include environmental discourse and social movements, anthropological contributions to ecological management systems, or examination of emerging issues in the field. ANTH 360 is recommended as background.

Selected topics in contemporary social and cultural theory which contribute to anthropological analyses. Topics may include Marxist anthropology, critical theory, theories of culture, phenomenology, behavioural ecology, structuralism, hermeneutics, formal theory and examination of specific social theorists.

Cross-cultural study of the operation of law within contested systems of meaning, the social organization of law, and forms of consciousness of the participants in legal/justice practices.

An anthropological perspective on the historical origins and theoretical explanations of social inequality.

Ethnographic digital video production, including methods of ethnographic fieldwork, creation of field notes, and research design; basics of digital video planning, production, and editing. Production fees are charged for this course. Prerequisite: ANTH 378 is recommended.

A combination of approximately 50 hours of volunteering and fieldwork based in community organizations with theoretical approaches to urban spaces. Students will engage in collaborative research while considering a range of theoretical and methodological approaches.

Prerequisite: ANTH 100.
Equivalency: SOCI 480.

An intensive examination of selected topics in Anthropology. Topics are announced annually