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Anthropology is concerned with human biological, social, and cultural development. This very broad interest has led to the division of the discipline into four distinctive areas of research.
Archaeology studies surviving evidence of people's activities in the past. From the excavation of sites and the analysis of artifacts uncovered, archaeologists draw conclusions about the organization of social groups, their adaptations to environment, and their spatial and temporal relations. General research topics include the origins of culture and technology, adaptations in the Ice Age, the peopling of the New World, development of food production and political inequality in the Old and New Worlds.
Linguistic and Semiotic Anthropology studies how language and other systems of human communication contribute to the reproduction, transmission, and transformation of culture. It is concerned with the role of language and other communicative systems in reproducing and transforming such aspects of society as power relations, ideology, subcultural expression, as well as class, gender and ethnic identity.
Physical Anthropology is the study of the biological diversity of humans, the history of this diversity, and the biological relationships between humans and non-human primates. Major foci in Physical Anthropology include Human Biology, the study of modern humans; Osteology, the study of the human skeleton; Paleoanthropology, the study of human evolution; and Primatology, the study of non-human primates. Physical anthropologists integrate biological and social variables in their explanations of the effects of evolution on humans and other primates.
Social and Cultural Anthropology: traditionally, Social Anthropology dealt with non-literate and isolated societies, which could be observed in their totality. Today, many social anthropologists also study such aspects of complex societies as peasantry, ethnic minorities, and industrial work groupings. Institutions and models of social behaviour are compared cross-culturally to establish more general concepts and theories.
Careers in Anthropology emphasize either theoretical, academic aspects or practical applications. Most institutions involved in teaching and research require anthropologists with a Ph.D. For practical applications, at least an M.A. is usually required.
Courses in anthropology provide a unique grounding and can be fruitfully combined with courses in a wide variety of other disciplines.
The Anthropology Student Association (ASA) compiles course evaluations published annually in the Arts and Science Student Union (ASSU) Anti-calendar.
Undergraduate Secretary/Student Counsellor: Mrs. C. Farquhar, Sidney Smith Hall, Rm. 1030 (978-6414)
Enrolment in the Anthropology programs is open to students who have completed four full course- equivalents.
ANTHROPOLOGY (GENERAL) (B.A.)
Specialist program (Hon.B.A.): S17751
(11 full courses or their equivalent, including at least one 400-series course)
Major program Major program: M17751 (7 ANT full courses or their equivalent: including ANT 100Y and at least three 300+ series courses)
Minor program Minor program: R17751 (4 ANT full courses or their equivalent: of which at least one must be 300+ series course)
ANTHROPOLOGY (LINGUISTIC and SEMIOTIC) (B.A.)
Major program: M11951 (7 full courses or their equivalent, including at least two 300+ series courses)
ANTHROPOLOGY (PHYSICAL) (B.Sc.)
Major program: M15101 (7 full courses or their equivalent, including at least two 300+series courses)
First or Second Year: ANT 203Y
ANTHROPOLOGY (SOCIAL/CULTURAL) (Hon.B.A.)
Specialist program: S21121 (11 full courses or their equivalent, including at least one 400-series course)
ANTHROPOLOGICAL SCIENCES (Hon.B.Sc.)
Specialist program: S01311 (14 full courses or their equivalent, including at least one 400-series course)
Group A: (Archaeology: Area): ANT 299Y, 309H, 315H, 352H, 414H, 417H, 419H, 498H, 499H Group B: (Archaeology: Theory): ANT 200Y, 299Y, 311Y, 406H, 407H, 408H, 409H, 411H, 415Y, 420H, 498H, 499H, ARH 305H, 312Y; JPA 305H, 310H, 400Y
Group C: (Linguistics): ANT 299Y, 323H, 329Y, 425H, 427H, 444Y, 498H, 499H; JAL 253H, 254H, 328Y, 355H, 356H, 401H
Group D: (Physical): ANT 203Y, 299Y, 328H, 330Y, 332Y, 333Y, 334Y, 337Y, 428H, 429Y, 433H, 434H, 435H, 498H, 499H
Group E: (Social-Cultural: Area): ANT 299Y, 325Y, 344Y, 345Y, 362Y, 364Y, 365Y, 446H, 447H, 451H, 453H, 456H, 498H, 499H; JAP 356H
Group F: (Social-Cultural: Theory): ANT 204Y, 299Y, 340H, 341H, 342Y, 343Y, 346H, 347H, 348Y, 351H, 360Y, 363Y, 367H, 440H, 441H, 444Y, 448H, 449H, 450H, 461Y, 498H, 499H
Section 4 for Key to Course Descriptions)
Undergraduate seminar that focuses on specific ideas, questions, phenomena or controversies, taught by a regular Faculty member deeply engaged in the discipline. Open only to newly admitted first-year students. It may serve as a breadth requirement course; see First Year Seminars: 199Y.
Society and culture from various anthropological perspectives: socio-cultural, biological, archaeological, and linguistic.
Cultures in the Old and New Worlds from an archaeological perspective. Principles of prehistoric research are applied to archaeological information, from the Early Pleistocene to the beginning of written history.
Recommended Preparation: ANT100Y
Basic approaches to the understanding of social and cultural organization in societies of varying complexity. Comparative social institutions: economic, political, familial, and ritual. Belief systems and symbolic thought, the individual in society, sources of stability and change in socio-cultural systems. Anthropological perspectives on current social issues.
The study of the relationship between language and society with the goal of understanding social structure through language; major themes are multilingual societies, including pidgin and creoles, and social interaction through speech. (Given by the Departments of Anthropology and Linguistics)
The study of language structure through its social functions; major themes are social correlates of linguistic variation, including language and gender, and the social origins of sound change. (Given by the Departments of Anthropology and Linguistics)
Credit course for supervised participation in faculty research project. See page 46 for details.
A survey of human prehistory in culture areas west of the Rockies, focussing on developmental sequences and evolutionary trends. (Complements ANT317H)
Practical field training through six weeks of excavation on an archaeological site. Basic principles of artifact handling and classification. (Offered only in Summer Session)
Archaeology and ethnohistory of Arctic cultures. Emphasis is on variation in social organization, settlement pattern, economy, ideology, and interaction with the expanding European world-system.
How popular culture transforms and maintains social structure. Case studies may include the newscast, situation comedies, romance novels, comic books, hip-hop culture etc.
The Southern African peoples before, during, and after their domination by colonial regimes. Reserve systems, migratory labour, farm labour, urban life and social stratification.
For the Twenty-first century, the most important facts regarding genetics are those that have social, political, medical and ethical implications. Topics include: Darwinism, biological communication between generations, gene interaction, selection formulation, population genetics, human diversity, mating system in man, race, eugenics and euphenics, nature and nurture.
Introduction to writing systems (their historical development and their relationship to sound and meaning) and the role of literacy in culture and society. (Given by the Departments of Anthropology and Linguistics)
The role of language and symbolism in the representation and manipulation of ideology and power structure. Case materials drawn from the study of verbal arts, gender, law, ethnic relations, consumption patterns, advertising, and politics with a focus on North America.
Comparative analysis of political institutions and processes in societies of varying complexity.
Anthropological theories on ritual, belief, and symbolism. Explores continuity and change in systems of meaning in different societies.
Examines kinship, marriage and family ties as a basis for social and economic organization. Contemporary Canadian patterns are contrasted with those in selected band and tribal societies.
Social anthropological perspectives on variations in gender roles and systems. Examines, through comparison of ethnography, the relationship of gender to social organization, economic and political processes, belief systems and social change.
Pre-industrial sociocultural types and their transformation in the national development of Southeast Asia.
Politics, economics, religion, marriage and kinship in traditional, colonial, and contemporary West African societies.
Social anthropological perspective on the nature and meaning of food production, culinary cultures, industrial food, food as metaphor, and famine and hunger.
The role of culture, cultural diversity, space and performance in urban institutions and settings. The cultural context and consequence of urbanization.
Examines indigenous traditions of healing which focus on the religious dimension. The organization of healing and restoring ritual and ceremonial contexts is examined. Examples are drawn from North and South America, Australia and some of the mainstream religious traditions.
A survey of ethnographic film as a medium for representation of other cultures. Films using different styles and techniques of presentation are viewed. Readings on ethnographic film.
Ways in which women and men differ in their use of language and in their behaviour in conversational interaction; ways in which language reflects cultural beliefs about women and men. (Given by the Departments of Anthropology and Linguistics)
Linguistic variation and its social significance, especially markers of social class, sex and age; applications of statistics and other quantitative methods for correlating linguistic and social variables. (Given by the Departments of Anthropology and Linguistics)
The course explores a range of African cosmologies, epistemologies, and theologies, as well as specific case studies on justice, the moral order, and gender relations. The influence of these richly diverse traditions is traced as well in the writings of African thinkers in the Diaspora. Jointly taught by the Departments of Anthropology and Philosophy
Relationship between religion, music and society from an anthropological point of view. Focus on societies where music is seen as a principle vehicle for religious expression and social reproduction. Selected indigenous societies compared to so-called world religions.
Basic features of Indian society and culture: caste, class, family and kinship, ritual, sex roles, agricultural organization, urbanization, industrialization, and emigration.
Origins, history and internal dynamics of early and modern state societies, examined with a view to placing our own socio-political system in an historical and comparative perspective. Case studies include material from Africa, Asia, the Americas and early modern Europe.
A survey of Melanesian societies with emphasis on Papua New Guinea's classic regional issues of sexual segregation and antagonism. Warfare, initiation rites, male cults, recent work on women's lives and social change.
Culture areas and types existing in precontact and early contact times in North America; problems arising out of contacts between North American Indians and Euroamericans.
Various cross-cultural perspectives of religious beliefs and practices in both small-scale, non-literate societies that are the classic terrain of anthropology, and in complex, literate traditions.
Practice in language analysis based on elicited data from a native speaker of a foreign language, emphasizing procedures and techniques. (Given by the Departments of Anthropology and Linguistics)
Core reduction strategies, replication, experimental archaeology, use-wear, design approaches, ground stone, inferring behaviour from lithic artifacts.
Potters' strategies, clay and temper preparation, pot-building techniques, thin-section analysis, NAA, residue analysis, use-wear on pots, style and decoration in pots, inferring social systems through pottery distributions, inferring exchange systems etc.
Recent research on the origins and adaptation of early pastoralists. Modern pastoralist studies and interpretations of the archaeological record. Location and recognition of pastoral sites, interpretation of faunal remains, interaction between pastoralists and agriculturalists, and the role of pastoralists in cultural change. Normally offered every three years.
The survey and spatial analysis of archaeological evidence over territories larger than individual camps, villages or towns. Settlement systems, regional exchange and communication, rank-size analysis, nearest neighbour analysis etc.
Seminar in the critical examination of major schools of archaeological thought.
The development and state of research in the late prehistory of Europe and Southwest Asia (ca. 10,000-500 B.C.) Broad cultural developments, such as post-Pleistocene adaptations of hunter-foragers, development and spread of agriculture, and rise of economic inequality and political complexity.
Methods for studying the socio-spatial aspects of the archaeological evidence for households and communities.
Examination of the origin and evolution of culture during the Pleistocene.
How social complexity is manifested in the archaeological record. Origins and evolution of prehistoric complex societies, from small-scale chiefdoms to large-scale states.
How ideas about language fit into the overall views of humankind as expressed by selected anthropologists, linguists, sociologists, and philosophers.
The role of language in the reproduction and transformation of ideology and political economy. Readings include linguistic analyses of gender and class relations in local and global contexts, as well as seminal works in linguistics and other social sciences.
Diet as part of the interaction between a population and its environment, reconstruction of the nutritional status of past populations. Methods and theories of reconstructing palaeonutrition; skeletal indicators of nutritional stress.
The study of various theoretical approaches to processes of social change and cultural differentiation, as well as historical and contemporary case studies.
Concepts, theories and controversies in economic anthropology.
Social and linguistic anthropological approaches to research in urban settings. Methodology, field techniques and research ethics. Students must formulate and complete a field research project.
The extent to which the conventional methods of ethnography can be helpful in understanding Western European society. Compares anthropological approaches to other disciplines, especially social history. Examines how the increasing movement of people has made it more difficult to see ethnography in terms of the study of place, and explores other alternatives.
Social and cultural anthropology of oceanic peoples including the Australian and New Zealand aborigines.
An examination of theories and critique of ethnicity and nationalism from an anthropological perspective. The problem of the cultural context of ethnicity. Case studies.
The contribution of ethnographic study to the understanding of regional disparities within Western and Third World nations. The inter-relationship between persistent economic underdevelopment, expressions of regional identity and class formation by reference to comparative ethnographic examples.
Comparative examination of human ecological adaptations, livelihood strategies, spiritual and cultural values and their relation to environmental maintenance or degradation. Explores contemporary "grass roots" environmental movements and ideologies.
Major social issues in Caribbean societies. Pre-conquest social organization, slavery, race and class, plantation and peasant organization, family structure, cultural pluralism and the nation state, rural and international migration, social change.
Major issues in the history and development of Sub-Arctic Native people of Canada: Indian social structure, European/Native interaction, land tenure, politics and religion.
Examines recent shifts in the currents of European society and European thought which are closely related to social change. Regional nationalism, subjectivities and citizenship, and new forms of work, will all come under scrutiny. These phenomena will act as tests to the conceptual frameworks of "cultural studies," Raymond Williams, Pierre Bourdieu, etc.
History and development of theories which underlie contemporary anthropology.
Supervised independent research on a topic agreed on by the student and supervisor before enrolment in the course. Open only to advanced students with an adequate background in Anthropology. Application for enrolment should be made to the Department in the preceding term.
The evolution of humans and their primate relatives, early and current evolutionary theory, human genetics, human adaptability and variability.
Introduction to methods for remote sensing of buried archaeological remains, dating, and analysis of ancient materials. Application of methods and interpretation of results in archaeological contexts. (Offered in alternate years) (Given by the Departments of Physics and Anthropology)
Introduction to the principles behind archaeometric methods for remote sensing, dating, and analysis of archaeological materials, and interpretation of results. Offered in conjunction with JPA305H. (Offered in alternate years) (Given by the Departments of Physics and Anthropology)
This course provides background in the practical and theoretical aspects of fieldwork in Paleoanthropology. Students are trained in the treatment and analysis of fossil vertebrates, plant macro- and micro-fossils and sediments. Excursions to paleoanthropological localities of Homo erectus and Homo sapiens, and excavation at a hominoid site. (Joint undergraduate-graduate)
A detailed examination of human musculo-skeletal anatomy from the comparative and evolutionary perspectives. Allometry, basic biomechanics, functional anatomy, and the structure and function of human mastication, the brain, the forelimb and bipedalism. Labs make use of the large collection of primate skeletal material and fossil human casts.
A survey of living primates, describing their behavioural and anatomical characteristics, and a review of the evolutionary history of the Order of Primates for the past 60 million years. Lab-oriented course comparing the anatomy and adaptations of modern primates with the abundant and diverse primate skeletal material preserved in the fossil record.
The normal and variational anatomy of the human skeleton: the archaeological recovery of human remains, methods of analyzing metrical and non-metrical traits, and paleopathology. Emphasis on practical laboratory work.
Discussion of biological diversity of human populations according to climatic, nutritional, disease and demographic variables. From an ecological perspective, emphasis on evaluating the role of various factors (genetic, environmental and cultural) influencing population biology and on understanding the significance of human population variation.
An introduction to research in archaeometry and archaeological prospecting. Possible projects: magnetic and resistivity surveying of archaeological sites; thermoluminescence measurements; neutron activation analysis and x-ray fluorescence analysis of artifacts; radiocarbon dating by atom counting; lead isotope analysis. (Offered in alternate years) (Given by the Departments of Physics and Anthropology)
Examination and interpretation of faunal material from archaeological sites as evidence for culture.
Advanced seminar addressing the questions of primate and human evolution from a palaeoecological perspective. The course reviews methods, theories, and physical evidence behind the palaeoecological approach. Students are expected to research and review the scientific literature relevant to specific case studies in the primate and human fossil record.
Method and theory in paleoanthropology focusing on reconstructions of human evolutionary history and the behaviour of fossil hominids. Identification and analysis of fossil human material and hominid systematics. Includes an extensive lab component using a large collection of primate skeletons and fossil human casts.
Reviews the evolutionary history of the Order Primates by examining the fossil record of this group for the last 60 million years. Lab-oriented, the course compares the anatomy and adaptations of modern primates with the abundant and diverse primate skeletal material preserved in the fossil record.
The study of diseases and maladies of ancient populations. The course surveys the range of pathology on human skeletons, (trauma, infection, syphilis, tuberculosis, leprosy, anemia, metabolic disturbances, arthritis and tumors).
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