Sociology and Anthropology

JOY CHARLTON, Professor of Sociology 4
MICHAEL L. MULLAN, Professor of Sociology
BRAULIO MUÑOZ, Professor of Sociology 2
SARAH WILLIE-LeBRETON, Professor of Sociology, Chair
FARHA N. GHANNAM, Associate Professor of Anthropology
LEE A. SMITHEY, Associate Professor of Sociology
CHRISTOPHER FRAGA, Assistant Professor of Anthropology
MICHAEL REAY, Assistant Professor of Sociology
CHRISTINE SCHUETZE, Assistant Professor of Anthropology
MAYA NADKARNI, Visiting Assistant Professor of Anthropology
NINA JOHNSON, Visiting Assistant Professor of Sociology and Faculty Coordinator of Community Based Learning – Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility
STEPHEN VISCELLI, Visiting Assistant Professor of Sociology
ROSE MAIO, Administrative Coordinator

2 Absent on leave, spring 2014.
4 Absent on administrative leave, 2013–2014.

The Sociology and Anthropology Department provides students with intellectual tools for understanding contemporary and historical social issues, such as globalization, nationalism, racism, sexism, embodiment, and the complex layering of social inequalities in everyday life. These two disciplines approach the study of social life from different avenues, each bringing a set of separate and overlapping analytical and research tools to intellectual tasks that are complementary and synergistic. Our students seek knowledge about societies of the world and the social dynamics within them. To that end, our majors each conduct independent projects based on primary research and/or fieldwork during their senior year.

Sociology and anthropology analyze experiences at the level of the individual or the group and connect them to larger social dynamics. The disciplines illustrate how matters that are often perceived as “private troubles” are actually consequences of cultural categories and social structures, including those that appear and feel natural and inevitable. Among the goals of sociology and anthropology are to acquire knowledge about different groups, cultures, and to engage critically with the complexities of social life.

The Sociology and Anthropology Department offers a course major, honors major and minor, and several special majors, but no course minor.

The Academic Program

Course Major

Applicants for the major normally have completed at least two courses in the department. Courses numbered ANTH/SOCI 001 to 020 serve as points of entry for students wishing to begin work in the department and normally serve as prerequisites to higher-level work in the department (ANTH/SOCI 021–099). Some higher courses may, however, with permission of the instructor, be taken without prerequisite. Seminars are numbered ANTH/SOCI 100 to 199. For current seminar listings, consult www.swarthmore.edu/socanth, or contact the department administrative coordinator.
The applicant’s performance in department courses is discussed during the application review process; we also consider carefully an applicant’s potential for carrying out the department’s senior thesis requirement. Please note that the Sociology and Anthropology Department does not offer a course minor.
Note: Course labeling within each of the three tiers of offerings—introductory courses (ANTH/SOCI 001–019), regular courses (ANTH/SOCI 020–099) and seminars (ANTH/SOCI 100–199)—reflect internal departmental codes rather than levels of advancement or particular research areas. Consult the listings for prerequisites particular to each course.)

Requirements

Course majors are required to take at least eight units of work in the department; of the eight, five are assigned.

Our new introductory course, and a requirement for majors, is "Introduction to Anthropology & Sociology," SOAN 001A. ("Exemplary Studies in Sociology & Anthropology" is no longerbeing offered. Sophomores through seniors who have already taken "Exemplary Studies" are exempt from taking SOAN 001A.)

In addition, majors must take one designated theory course, one designated methods course, and a two-credit senior thesis.

Culminating Exercise/Comprehensive Examination

In order to graduate, all course majors must complete a two-credit senior thesis.

Acceptance Criteria

For course majors, the department usually looks for at least a C average overall and at least a C average for work in the department.
Course Minor
The Sociology and Anthropology Department does not offer a course minor.

Honors Major

Requirements

Students pursuing an honors major are required to complete at least eight ANTH/SOCI credits, five of which are assigned:

The Classes of 2014, 2015 and 2016 are required to take SOAN 001A “Introduction to Anthropology and Sociology,” at least one designated theory course, at least one designated methods course and a two-credit senior thesis.

Beginning with the Class of 2017 students will be required to take both ANTH 001A “Introduction to Anthropology,” and SOCI 001S “Introduction to Sociology,” at least one designated methods course, and a two-credit senior thesis.

Honors preparations include three preparations in sociology and anthropology. One of these preparations must be a double credit thesis. The other two may be a seminar, course plus attachment, paired upper level courses, or in special circumstances, courses taken abroad. The latter three forms of preparation must have the advance approval of the supervising faculty member and of the department. The three preparations will be evaluated by external examiner during the spring semester of your senior year.

Acceptance Criteria

Applicants for the Honors Program (majors and minors) will usually be expected to have completed at least two courses in the department outside the honors preparations, to have at least a B average overall and grades of at least B for work taken in the department.

The department will evaluate the progress of students writing Senior Honor Thesis before the end of November. If progress is deemed inadequate, the student will be asked to withdraw from honors.

Honors and Off-Campus Study

There are a number of ways in which study abroad can be either integral or complementary to a major in sociology and anthropology. These include, but are not restricted to, the development of an honors preparation from work abroad and preparation for the senior thesis. To explore study abroad possibilities, students are required to consult with the chair of the department.

Students who contemplate basing an honors preparation on off-campus study work must seek the department’s conditional approval for this, before undertaking the off-campus study. Upon returning from abroad, students must request departmental approval of the honors preparation based on work done abroad. To do this, students must submit to the department all materials done abroad, including syllabi and written work, which are intended to be part of the honors preparation. Upon review of these materials, the department will notify the student as to whether or not the proposed honors preparation is approved. Students should expect approval of only one honors preparation which includes off-campus study.

Honors Minor

Students seeking to do an Honors minor normally complete at least five ANTH/SOCI credits, three of which are assigned: The Classes of 2014, 2015 and 2016 are required to take SOAN 001A “Introduction to Anthropology and Sociology,” at least one designated theory course, at least one designated methods course.
Beginning with the incoming Class of 2017 students will be required to take both ANTH 001A “Introduction to Anthropology,” and SOCI 001S “Introduction to Sociology” and at least one designated methods course.
Minors in the Honors Program must complete one two-credit preparation: a seminar or a thesis, a class with an attachment, or with permission paired courses.

The Honors Minor preparations include:
1. One honors preparation in ANTH/SOCI, selected from the menu presented in (1), above.
2. Depending on the format of the presentation, the examiner will receive the materials described in (2) and (3), above. The minor student’s work for this preparation will be the same as the major student’s work.

Acceptance Criteria

Applicants for the Honors Program (majors and minors) will usually be expected to have completed at least two courses in the department outside the honors preparations, to have at least a B average overall and grades of at least B for work taken in the department.

The department will evaluate the progress of students writing Senior Honor Thesis before the end of November. If progress is deemed inadequate, the student will be asked to withdraw from Honors.

Special Major

Most Special Majors need to be anchored in a home department. In sociology and anthropology we normally require five ANTH/SOCI credits to be a home department.

The Class years 2014, 2015 and 2016 are required to take SOAN 001A “Introduction to Anthropology and Sociology,” at least one designated theory course, at least one designated methods course.

Beginning with the Class of 2017 students will be required to take both ANTH 001A “Introduction to Anthropology,” SOCI 001S “Introduction to Sociology,” and at least one designated methods course.

Four credits from outside of the department must be included as part of the special major.
In putting together the special major, it is advisable that the student only designate ten courses as part of the major. That way there will be no problems with the 20-course rule.

Culminating Exercise/Comprehensive Examination

In order to graduate, all special majors housed in the Sociology and Anthropology Department must complete a two-credit thesis.

Acceptance Criteria

The department usually looks for at least a C average overall and at least a C average for work in the department.

Thesis / Culminating Exercise

The 2-credit senior thesis requirement, normally completed in the fall and spring semesters of the senior year, includes the Thesis Writers Masters Class and a thesis tutorial in which the student works closely with a faculty adviser.

Application Process Notes for the Major or the Minor

Students intending to major or minor in sociology/anthropology must submit a Sophomore Plan application to the department office.

Advanced Placement/International Baccalaureate Credit

Considered on a case-by-case basis for majors and minors.

Transfer Credit

Considered on a case-by-case basis for majors and minors.

Off-Campus Study

Because of its strong cross-cultural and transnational orientations, the department encourages students to study abroad. For many, study abroad provides a basis for their senior thesis project (see the department’s homepage for a listing of students’ projects). The senior thesis project allows students to develop their research interests through working directly with a faculty member. This combination of breadth of knowledge, global understanding, and independent research make sociology and anthropology an ideal liberal arts major.

Research and Service-Learning Opportunities

Students have the opportunity to conduct original research supervised by faculty—whose approaches run the gamut from ethnography to textual analysis to survey research. Students also explore the historical development of sociology and anthropology. Research design, qualitative research, and statistical analysis are an important component of many academic programs, enabling students to undertake rigorous research projects and best analyze, interpret, and communicate their findings. The curriculum also provides opportunities for students to learn techniques to creatively convey their work through ethnography, photography and documentary films.

Experiential learning is an important component of much work in sociology and anthropology. Our department strongly supports participation in study abroad as well as work in the field. For many students, these experiences challenge them to ask questions that eventually serve as foundation of their senior thesis project. Summer funding opportunities exist and are particularly relevant for juniors planning research towards their senior thesis projects. Study aboard and fieldwork provide an opportunity for students to develop contacts and gain rapport within their eventual research setting. Funding is available from the department and the College to support students in their pursuit of these experiences.

The Sociology and Anthropology Department emphasizes independent research. We prepare students to conduct research on primary and secondary documents as well as to conduct interviews, engage in participant observation, organize focus groups, administer surveys, and produce ethnographic films. By senior year, our students are ready to write a senior thesis that is not only based on library research but also in real-world experience. Recent student research projects have focused on issues such as alternative development programs in Latin America, immigration policies in the U.S., gender and health in Africa, and online activism. Independent research conducted by our students is one feature that consistently distinguishes them when they are pursuing jobs, fellowships, or graduate school admission.

Summer Opportunities

Grants from a variety of college-administered sources are available to support research by students during the summer. Please look at our website for information about our extensive and generous funds for travel, research, internships, and faculty/student collaboration.

We encourage our juniors to explore these possibilities. Each year for the past several years, some of our majors have been awarded these grants and, in most cases, the summer research done under their auspices has been the basis for fine senior theses.

Teacher Certification

Each year, in conjunction with the Educational Studies Department, a number of our majors seek teacher certification. Students contemplating teacher certification would normally schedule their program in a semester which does not conflict with their senior thesis. Such programs should be developed in close consultation with advisers in the Educational Studies Department.

Anthropology Courses

Note: Course labeling within each of the three tiers of offerings—introductory courses (ANTH 001–019), regular courses (ANTH 020–099) and seminars (ANTH 100–199)—reflect internal departmental codes rather than levels of advancement or particular research areas. Please consult the listings for prerequisites particular to each course.

ANTH 001D. Counterculture

If culture is a battlefield, nowhere was this expressed more clearly than in the countercultural tumult that beset North American civil society during the Cold War. This First Year Seminar will analyze the dynamics of cultural friction by bringing some of anthropology's key concepts and comparative insights to bear on the countercultural campaigns that coalesced during the second half of the twentieth century. In so doing, our broader project will be to ask what countercultural friction can teach us about the machinations of power in the contemporary world.
1 credit.
Fraga.

ANTH 002D. First-Year Seminar: Culture and Gender

The aim of this first-year seminar is to dismantle many of our commonplace assumptions about gender, sexuality, and sexual difference. It introduces the study of gender theory and anthropology by bringing key theoretical texts by Foucault, Butler, and others into conversation with recent ethnographies that have responded to, problematized, or advanced these theoretical claims. Central to our investigation is the gendered body as the site of specific paradigms of power and resistance, in contexts that range from the colonial empire to present-day labor inequalities, and from technologies of reproduction to drag performances of femininity.
Theory course.
Eligible for GSST credit.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Nadkarni.

ANTH 002E. Anthropology of Mass Media

This course is an introduction to the anthropology of modernity and the mass-mediation of modern forms of knowledge. It examines how the emergence of mass media has produced new kinds of subjects, social relations, and ways of narrating and interpreting modern social life: from novel images of national community to mass experiences of crime, war, and violence. Along the way, the course also asks the impact of new media technologies on the theory and practice of anthropology itself, and how such technologies force us to re-imagine identity, community, and locality.
Theory course.
Eligible for FMST credit.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Nadkarni.

ANTH 002F. Anthropology of Childhood and the Family

The experience of being a child would appear to be universal, and yet the construction of childhood varies greatly across cultures and throughout history. In this introductory course, we examine childhood and child-rearing in a variety of ethnographic contexts, investigating how the figure of the child has become the site of specific cultural ambitions and anxieties, as well as how children themselves are social actors. Topics include new and traditional forms of family and reproduction; the construction of threats and endangerment to (and from) the child; and how childhood is conceptualized by human rights discourse, among others.
Theory course.
Eligible for GSST credit.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Nadkarni.

ANTH 003F. Culture and Religion in Africa

In this course, we will explore the powerful interplay between religion, politics, and culture in Africa. Students engage in exploration of a wide range of topics designed to provide a historical and geographical overview of religious practices in different regions of sub-Saharan Africa. In our readings and in class discussions, we will pay close attention to how world views and systems of meaning shape actions and attitudes, and focus our anthropological eye on the practices of daily life: the material conditions and day-to-day routines of living. Throughout the course, we will consider the usefulness of the term “religion” itself, as we examine how daily practices that emerge in and through religious practices in Africa transcend Western distinctions between “religion,” “politics,” “economics,” and “society.”
Writing course.
Eligible for BLST credit.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Schuetze.

ANTH 003G. First-Year Seminar: Development and its Discontents

In this course, our goal will be to gain a new perspective on an often unquestioned social “good”: that of international economic development, including foreign aid to countries in the global south. This course will provide students with an introduction to the origin and evolution of ideas about development, and will encourage them to examine major theories and approaches to development from classical modernization theories to world-systems theories. Students will gain insight into how ideas of development fit into larger global dynamics of power and politics and how, contrary to professed goals, the practices of international development have often perpetuated poverty and widened the gap between rich and poor. During the course, we will investigate these issues through an array of texts that address different audiences including a novel, academic books and journals, film, popular writings and ethnographic monographs.
Theory course and writing course.
Eligible for BLST and PEAC credit.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Schuetze.

ANTH 009C. Cultures of the Middle East

Looking at ethnographic texts, films, and literature from different parts of the region, this class examines the complexity and richness of culture and life in the Middle East. The topics we will cover include orientalism, colonization, gender, ethnicity, tribalism, nationalism, migration, nomadism, and religious beliefs. We will also analyze the local, national, and global forces that are reshaping daily practices and cultural identities in various Middle Eastern countries.
Eligible for ISLM credit.
Writing course.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Ghannam.

ANTH 020J. Dance and Diaspora

(See DANCE 025A)
Theory course and writing course.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Chakravorty.

ANTH 021D. Anthropology of Art and Aesthetics

This course will familiarize students with the key debates that have shaped the anthropological study of art over the course of the 20th century. After reviewing Franz Boas’s path-breaking studies on Native American design motifs, we will go on to survey studies of indigenous artistic traditions, the controversies ignited by metropolitan exhibitions of primitivist modern art, and theoretical disputes over aesthetic paradigms in the anthropology of art, before posing the question of how anthropology can illuminate and engage contemporary art worlds.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Fraga.

ANTH 023C. Anthropological Perspectives on Conservation

Conservation of biodiversity through the creation of national parks is an idea and a practice that began in the U.S. with the creation of Yellowstone in 1872. In this course, we will examine the ideas behind the initial creation of national parks and explore the global spread of these ideas through the historical and contemporary creation of parks in other countries. As we examine the origin of the idea for parks, we will also consider the human costs that have been associated with their creation. Ultimately, the class offers a critical exploration of theories and themes related to nature, political economy, and culture—themes that fundamentally underlie the relationship between society and environment.
Theory course.
Eligible for ENVS or BLST credit.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Schuetze.

ANTH 029B. Ethnography: Theory and Practice

This class maps anthropological theories and methods through reading and critically analyzing the discipline’s flagship genre, ethnography. We work historically by reading classical texts that exemplify different approaches (such as functionalism, structuralism, symbolic anthropology, and reflexive anthropology) used to analyze culture and social structure. We address questions such as: How did Malinowski understand ethnography? How does this understanding compare to more recent views of anthropologists such as Geertz? How did the meaning of fieldwork change over time? We pay special attention to the politics of representation and the anthropologists’ continuous struggle to find new ways to write about culture.
Theory and methods course.
Writing course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Ghannam.

ANTH 032C. Anthropological Perspectives on Childhood and the Family

The experience of being a child would appear to be universal, and yet the construction of childhood varies greatly across cultures and throughout history. In this course, we examine childhood and child-rearing in a variety of ethnographic contexts, investigating how the figure of the child has become the site of specific cultural ambitions and anxieties, as well as how children themselves are social actors. Topics include new and traditional forms of family and reproduction; the construction of threats and endangerment to (and from) the child; and how childhood is conceptualized by human rights discourse, among others.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Nadkarni.

ANTH 032D. Mass Media and Anthropology

This intermediate course explores the anthropology of modernity and the mass-mediation of modern forms of knowledge. It examines how the emergence of mass media has produced new kinds of subjects, social relations, and ways of narrating and interpreting modern social life: from novel images of national community to mass experiences of crime, war, and violence. Along the way, the course also asks the impact of new media technologies on the theory and practice of anthropology itself, and how such technologies force us to re-imagine identity, community, and locality.
Theory course.
Eligible for FMST credit.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Nadkarni.

ANTH 039B. Globalization and Culture

What is globalization? Is globalization “cultural imperialism,” Westernization, Americanization, or McDonaldization? Our class will examine such questions and critically analyze how global flows (of goods, capital, labor, information, and people) are shaping cultural practices and identities. We will study recent theories of globalization and transnationalism and read various ethnographic studies of how global processes are articulated and resisted in various cultural settings.
Theory course and writing course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Ghannam.

ANTH 040B. Language, Culture, and Society

(See LING 025)
Prerequisite: At least one linguistics course.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Staff.

ANTH 041B. Visions of Latin America

This course is premised on the idea that the forms of a population’s political domination depend upon how that population is envisioned—i.e., upon the visual techniques of knowledge/power that make possible the orderly administration of society, as well as upon the cultural imaginaries that shape social desires and fears. Beginning with historical accounts of the cataclysmic encounter between the Spanish Empire and the peoples of the New World, this course will survey the visual technologies through which the Holy Roman Empire and the later Latin American republics attended to their subjects, as well as the colonial and post-colonial fantasies that have haunted Latin America over the past five hundred years.
Eligible for LASC credit.
1 credit.
Not offered Spring 2014. Fraga.

ANTH 041C. Visual Cultures of Mexican and Aztlan

Surveying the visual signifiers with which creole, Mexican, and Chican@ identities have been forged, this course will track a broad sample of figures through the historical and political contexts of New Spain, modern Mexico and occupied Aztlán. We will ground our study of these icons in the social context of their production and circulation, and will critically examine the relationships between image-making and state-making, and between citizenship, national/ethnic identity, and community-building. Visual materials for the semester will include a robust sample of religious and secular art, cinema, and print media.
Eligible for LASC credit.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Fraga.

ANTH 042D. Political Anthropology

This course examines the anthropology of rights, justice, and the state. Its focus is citizenship: as both an ideal of formal equality and a lived practice of political belonging whose modalities reflect and reproduce social inequity. The first half investigates how citizenship intersects with forms of difference such as race, class, gender, sexuality, and ability. Ethnographic examples include debates about the legal recognition of gay marriage, spatial struggles over the right to the city, and disability activism and the biopolitics of citizenship. The second half examines how new forms of mobility of people, ideas, and capital challenge the nation-state as the site of political membership. What is the state’s responsibility towards its “others”: from transnational entrepreneurs to illegal migrant workers, and from political refugees to the detainees at Guantanamo Bay?
Theory course.
1 credit.
Fall 2014. Nadkarni.

ANTH 043E. Culture, Health, Illness

People in all societies encounter and manage sickness. Yet, there are diverse and unique approaches to understanding and managing health and disease. The human experience of sickness entails a complex interplay between biological, socio-economic and cultural factors. This course offers an introduction to medical anthropology, and draws upon social, cultural, biological, and linguistic anthropology to better understand those factors which influence health and well being (broadly defined), the experience and distribution of illness, the prevention and treatment of sickness, healing processes, the social relations of therapy management, and the cultural importance and use of pluralistic medical systems. Topics covered include how beliefs about health, disease and the body are constructed and transmitted, how healers are chosen and trained, social disparities in health and illness, and the importance of narrative and performance in the effectiveness of healing practices. Finally, we will consider the ways in which medical anthropology can shed light upon important contemporary medical and social concerns.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Schuetze.

ANTH 043F. Culture, Power, and Religion in Africa

In this course, we will explore the powerful interplay between religion, politics, and culture in Africa. Students engage in exploration of a wide range of topics designed to provide a historical and geographical overview of religious practices in different regions of sub-Saharan Africa. In our readings and in class discussions, we will pay close attention to how world views and systems of meaning shape actions and attitudes, and explore how differing systems of meaning have shaped relationships of power in both historical and contemporary contexts. Throughout the course, we will consider the usefulness of the concept “religion” itself, as we examine how daily practices that emerge in and through religious practices in Africa transcend Western distinctions between “religion,” “politics,” “economics,” and “society.”
Eligible for BLST credit.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Schuetze.

ANTH 049B. Comparative Perspectives on the Body

This class explores how different societies regulate, discipline, and shape the human body. In the first part, we examine theories of the body and how they have evolved over time. In the second part, we focus on in-depth ethnographic cases and compare diverse cultural practices that range from the seemingly traditional practices, such as circumcision, foot binding, and veiling to the currently fashionable, such as piercing, tattooing, dieting, and plastic surgery. By comparing body modification through space and time, we ask questions such as: Is contemporary anorexia similar to wearing the corset during the 19th century? Is female circumcision different from breast implants? Furthermore, we investigate how embodiment shapes personal and collective identities (especially gender identities) and vice versa.
Eligible for GSST or INTP credit.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Ghannam.

ANTH 051B. Drugs and Governance in the Americas

Psychoactive substances offer us an especially powerful prism with which to analyze the techniques of governance that have characterized the political regimes of the Americas since colonization. Hemispheric in scope, this course will trace an anthropological history of the uses and abuses of such diverse substances as chocolate and tobacco, coffee and cocaine, peyote and prescription pharmaceuticals, thereby preparing students to disentangle the multiple forces that over determine contemporary discourses of drugs, intoxication, and their respective places in social life.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Fraga.

ANTH 072C. Memory, History, Nation

How do national communities remember—and forget? What roles do commemoration and amnesia play in constructing, maintaining, or challenging national and collective identities? This seminar considers memory and its pathologies as a central problematic for the nation-state. It reads theory and ethnography against each other to explore the politics and aesthetics of national memory across a number of sites and contexts, attentive to both the collectivities such commemorations inspire and their points of resistance and failure.
Eligible for INTP and GSST credit.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Nadkarni.

ANTH 072D. Visual Anthropology

This course introduces students to the history, theory, and practice of visual anthropology. It begins by examining how photographic and ethnographic forms of knowledge both emerged in the 19th century to analyze and classify various societal and cultural “others.” It then investigates how visual ethnographic methods have been used by anthropologists as tools of cultural analysis, in order to ask the consequences and implications of visual ethnography for the discipline more generally. Finally, it explores how indigenous groups and activists have used visual technologies to gain visibility and to remake their social worlds. The course will include a series of film screenings, as well as a small production component.
Theory course.
Eligible for FMST credit.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Nadkarni.

ANTH 077B. The Visual Anthropology of Performance

(See DANC 077B)
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Chakravorty.

ANTH 080B. Anthropological Linguistics: Endangered Languages

(See LING 120)
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Harrison.

ANTH 082B. After Empire: Ethnographies of Postsocialism and Postcolonialism

This course brings together two bodies of literature concerned with the experience and legacies of imperial rule. Treating the “post” as both a temporal marker and a critical stance, we will ask what postsocialist studies can learn from postcolonial studies, and vice-versa. To do so, we will investigate how each conceptualizes questions of power, epistemology, subjectivity, and difference in order to paint a more nuanced picture of the histories of colonialism and state socialism, as well as their after-effects upon contemporary politics, economy, and culture.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Nadkarni.

ANTH 095. Independent Study

All students wishing to do independent work must have the advance consent of the department and of an instructor who agrees to supervise the proposed project. Two options exist for students wishing to get credit for independent work.
Option 1 - consists of individual or group directed reading and study in fields of special interest to the students not dealt with in the regular course offerings.
Option 2 - credit may be received for practical work in which direct experience lends itself to intellectual analysis and is likely to contribute to a student’s progress in regular course work. Students must demonstrate to the instructor and the department a basis for the work in previous academic study. Students will normally be required to examine pertinent literature and produce a written report to receive credit.
0.5 or 1 credit.
Fall 2013 and spring 2014. Staff.

Anthropology Seminars

ANTH 112. Cities, Spaces, and Power

This seminar explores recent interdisciplinary insights to the analysis of spatial practices, power relationships, and urban forms. In addition, we read ethnographies and novels and watch films to explore questions such as: How is space socially constructed? What is the relationship between space and power? How is this relationship embedded in urban forms under projects of modernity and postmodernity? How do the ordinary practitioners of the city resist and transform these forms? Our discussion will pay special attention to issues related to racism and segregation, ethnic enclaves, urban danger, gendered spaces, colonial urbanism, and the “global” city.
Theory course.
2 credits.
Fall 2013. Ghannam.

ANTH 116. Anthropology of Capitalism

In the wake of the global financial system’s recent paroxysms, it is more urgent than ever that students of anthropology be equipped to understand the social and cultural dimensions of contemporary capitalism. This seminar will therefore examine the defining features of the current capitalist milieu through the lens of comparative ethnography. Combining classic theoretical readings on the structure and development of capitalism with concrete ethnographic studies, we will analyze a broad sample of the many guises under which capital travels across political, economic, and cultural borders. These analyses will then enable us to approach the more pressing question of how individual actors can and do contribute to the transformation of the global cultural economy.
Theory course.
2 credits.
Spring 2014. Fraga.

ANTH 122. Urban Ethnographies

As key players in the global economy, cities are becoming the focus of a growing number of studies that show how urban life is shaped by the complex interplay of global, national, and local processes. In this class, we look at urban ethnographies (texts and films) through space and examine how the representation of the city has changed over time. These ethnographies are conducted in Western cities such as New York, London, and Paris as well as cities in other parts of the world such as Cairo, Casablanca, Bombay, São Paolo, and Shanghai. We read these ethnographies to (1) discuss different techniques and approaches used to study urban cultures and identities, (2) examine how the collection of data relates to anthropological theories and methods, and (3) explore how research in cities shapes the field of cultural anthropology. In our discussions, we also explore important urban problems such as poverty, gangs, violence, and homelessness.
2 credits.
Not offered 2013–2014. Ghannam.

ANTH 123. Culture, Power, Islam

This seminar will be an interdisciplinary investigation into the shifting manners by which Islam is multiply understood as a creatively mystical force, a canonically organized religion, a political platform, a particular approach to economic investment, and a secular but powerful identity put forth in interethnic conflicts, to name only a handful of incarnations. Though wide ranging in our theoretical perspective, a deeply ethnographic approach to the lived experience of Islam in a number of cultural settings guides this study.
Eligible for ISLM credit.
2 credits.
Not offered 2013–2014. Ghannam.

ANTH 128. Culture, State, Citizenship

This honors seminar examines the challenges of citizenship in a number of ethnographic contexts: from immigrants seeking legal and cultural recognition in the U.S. to battles over multiculturalism in Europe, and from disability activists in the former Soviet Union to refugees from Southeast Asia. It investigates how people and communities experience citizenship as a crucial facet of their identities, and how these identities are produced, reinforced, or challenged in national and transnational contexts. Readings include selections from Gershon Shafir’s The Citizenship Debates: A Reader, as well as work by Renato Rosaldo, Aihwa Ong, and other anthropologists who analyze citizenship as a form of practice.
2 credits.
Not offered 2013–2014. Nadkarni.

ANTH 133. Anthropology of Biomedicine

In this seminar we explore biomedicine from an anthropological perspective, exploring the entanglement of bodies with history, environment, culture, and power. We begin the course with a focus on the historical emergence of biomedical technologies and their related discourses and practices and then move into contemporary contexts of their use and circulation. Throughout, we focus on the ways in which the development, use, and distribution of biomedical technologies and discourses are influenced by prevailing medical systems, political interests, and cultural norms. Topics to be covered include biomedicine as technology, medical categorization and ideas of the normal, ethics and moral boundaries, the space of the clinic, the circulation of pharmaceuticals, and health and inequality.
2 credits.
Not offered 2013–2014. Schuetze.

Sociology Courses

Note: Course labeling within each of the three tiers of offerings—introductory courses (SOCI 001–019), regular courses (SOCI 020–099) and seminars (SOCI 100–199)—reflect internal departmental codes rather than levels of advancement or particular research areas. Please consult the listings for prerequisites particular to each course.

SOCI 004B. First-Year Seminar: Introduction to Contemporary Social Thought

A general introduction to major theoretical developments in the study of social life since the 19th century. Selected readings will be drawn from the work of such modern social theorists as Marx, Weber, Durkheim, Freud, and Simmel. Readings from contemporary authors such as Geertz, Goffman, Adorno, and Arendt will also be included. These developments will be studied against the background of the sociophilosophical climate of the 19th century.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Muñoz.

SOCI 006F. Rich and Poor

The U.S. has experienced a remarkable rise in economic inequality since the 1970s. What is driving this trend? Is the U.S. still the land of opportunity or is it a society of haves and have-nots largely determined at birth? This course will address these and other pressing questions about economic inequality.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Viscelli.

SOCI 006G. Social Problems and Social Policy

This course uses theories of class, race, and social policy to analyze the concept of the “underclass” over the past four decades. The class focuses on sociological thinking about the effects of public policies concerning labor markets, housing, incarceration, and the war on drugs.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Viscelli.

SOCI 006H. Down But Not Out: The Social Problems of Philadelphia

For decades the City of Philadelphia has been plagued by problems of population loss, violent crime, poverty, racial segregation, failing public schools and environmental pollution. While serious problems remain, parts of Philadelphia are experiencing a remarkable rebirth and the city has reversed its decades-long trend of population loss. This class will look at the historical development of economic and educational inequality and an effort to address them in South Philadelphia, a largely poor and working-class area undergoing some of the most dramatic social change in the city. For over a century South Philly has been among the city’s most diverse and culturally vibrant areas and a major gateway for immigrants from across the globe—most recently from several Asian countries and the Puebla region of Mexico. The class will travel to South Philly and see the neighborhood in walking tours. The course has a significant community-based learning component in which students will contribute to an on-going project at one of the city’s most diverse public schools: Andrew Jackson Elementary. Jackson’s principal has developed a vision for making the school a model of how a green curriculum can be a low-cost vehicle for under-resourced urban schools to achieve academic excellence. We will help build a rooftop garden where Jackson’s students will learn the science of environmental sustainability by growing their own food. Students will also work to develop the next phase of Jackson becoming a model green school by designing a science greenhouse foe aquaponic and hydroponic vegetable growing systems. Every aspect of this greenhouse will showcase principles of energy efficiency and foster learning of science and math. The goal is to create a classroom that demonstrates daily the potential of passive and active solar energy technologies, allowing Jackson’s students to explore first-hand a critical question: which one is really the expensive “alternative” energy source: solar or digging up carbon fuels and burning them?
Note: Students who want to enroll/get credit for this as Educational Studies will need to have taken EDUC 014.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Viscelli.

SOCI 007B. Introduction to Race and Ethnicity in the United States

This course uses classic ethnographies, current race theory, and journalistic accounts to examine the experiences of selected ethnic groups in the U.S. and to investigate theories of racism, the meaning of race and ethnicity in the 20th century, and contemporary racialized public debates over affirmative action, welfare, and English-only policies.
Theory course.
Eligible for BLST credit.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Staff.

SOCI 007C. Sociology Through African American Women’s Writing

Interrogating the explicit and implicit claims that black women writers make in relation to work by social scientists, we will read texts closely for literary appreciation, sociological significance, and personal relevance, examining especially issues that revolve around race, gender, and class. Of special interest will be where authors position their characters vis-à-vis white supremacy, patriarchy, capitalism, and the U.S.
Eligible for BLST or GSST credit.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Willie-LeBreton.

SOCI 008F. First-Year Seminar: Technology and Humanity

It sometimes seems as if science and technology tend to replace communal understanding and human relationships. Historical and social scientific investigations suggest this is an illusion however; technology has always been shaped by and embedded in personal connections, group struggles, and cultural understandings. The real danger in fact lies in letting false impressions of technological dominance create unnecessary inequality and oppression. The class will explore this topic using examples such as the development of modern industry, the construction of railroads, the risks of nuclear catastrophe, the digital divide, and the development of online identities.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Reay.

SOCI 008G. First-Year Seminar: Science in Public Life

This class explores the role of science in society. It looks at how science contributes (or not) to the development of new technologies and practices which impact the environment, public health, daily life, and warfare. In order to help understand these patterns of the ‘con-construction’ of science and society the course also looks at science education, the media portrayal o science and technology, and the role of scientific expertise in public policy and decision-making. It ends by considering the ethnical responsibilities of scientists in the world today.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Reay.

SOCI 009E. First-Year Seminar: Social Action and Social Responsibility

We will explore the conditions and consequences of various types of effort to bring about positive social change, using theory and case studies from sociology and anthropology; class visits from individuals working directly with different strategies for social change; and off-campus opportunities for students to learn from groups and individuals dedicated to activism and service.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Charlton.

SOCI 010C. The Social Development of Sport

The course is designed as an introduction to the subfield of sport sociology. The primary focus of the course will rest on the developmental history of the institution of Western sport and the principal analytical frameworks constructed to explain its origins. Although the historical and theoretical material is centered on European developments, contemporary issues and debates on the relationship of gender, race, and ethnicity to sport will concentrate on American society. Readings will be drawn from the work of sociologists and historians working directly in sport studies.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Mullan.

SOCI 010H. The Tribal Identity of Sport: Nationalism, Ethnicity, and the Rise of Sport in the Modern Era

This course focuses on the development of modern sport of multiple levels of analysis. First, it is a primer on the descriptive facts of sport development in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and the social theory employed to study it. Second, it is more detailed at the connections between nationalism and sport, the nexus of national, communal association with sporting achievement as a social mechanism in the construction of group identity.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Mullan.

SOCI 010J. War, Sport, and the Construction of Masculine Identity

The course will concentrate on the themes of sport and war and the historical construction of male identity. Our culturally endorsed ideals of manhood are related to tests of skill and physical exertion. The influence of the sport/warrior ethic on modern sensibilities will take us to 19th-century England and the U.S. as these nations grappled with the meaning of sport and war as markers of the adult male. Contemporary works that challenge stock impressions of masculinity will be read.
Eligible for GSST or PEAC credit.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Mullan.

SOCI 010S. Diasporic Ethnicities: Mass Emigration 1860–1924

In this course, we will explore theories and traditions of sociological thought on ethnicity. Working with individual social histories of diaspora peoples as they make their communities in the U.S., students will be introduced to theoretical frameworks that help to explain the differences between sojourners and settlers, migration and exile.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Mullan.

SOCI 010T. 1968 and the Origins of New Left: Social Theory, War and Student Revolt

The course begins with an ending, the Treaty of Versailles, and the failed socialist revolutions in Germany (1919) and Italy (1920–21) and the subsequent recasting of Marxist theory evident in the writings of Gramsci, Marcuse and eventually Habermas, thinkers who stimulate the rise of the New Left of the 1960s. 1968 symbolizes the massive changes of an era, the Paris student/worker revolt, the Prague Spring, the Chicago Democratic Convention, Vietnam and the Tet Offensive, and the flowering of youth culture and the New Left. Thus, events and social theory form the nucleus of thought and investigation for a course with a year, 1968, as its descriptive title.
Eligible for PEAC credit.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Mullan.

SOCI 024B. Latin American Society and Culture

An introduction to the relationship between culture and society in Latin America. Recent and historical works in social research, literature, philosophy, and theology will be examined.
Eligible for LASC or PEAC credit.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Muñoz.

SOCI 024C. Latin American Society Through Its Novel

(Cross-listed as LITR 071S)
From an interdisciplinary framework, we will explore the relationship between society and its representation in the Latin America novel. The course will also help us understand the links between fiction and reality, and the role of literature as a form of cognition. Selected works by Carlos Fuentes, Mario Vargas Llosa, Gabriel García Márquez, Isabel Allende, Luisa Valenzuela, Jose María Arguedas and others. Readings, assignments, and open-dialogue class are in English. No prior knowledge of Spanish necessary.
Eligible for LASC credit.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Muñoz.

SOCI 024D. Topics in Social Theory

This course deals with Kant’s and Hegel’s social philosophy insofar as it influenced the development of modern social theory. Works by Marx, Weber, Durkheim, Freud, and critical theorists, neo-conservatives, and postmodernists will also be discussed.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Muñoz.

SOCI 025B. Transforming Intractable Conflict

This course will address the sociology of peace process and intractable identity conflicts in deeply divided societies. Northern Ireland will serve as the primary case study, and the course outline will include the history of the conflict, the peace process, and grassroots conflict transformation initiatives. Special attention will be given to the cultural underpinnings of division, such as sectarianism and collective identity, and their expression through symbols, language, and collective actions, such as parades and commemorations.
Eligible for PEAC credit.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Smithey.

SOCI 027B. The Constitution of Knowledge in Modern Society

This course takes classic sociology of knowledge texts as a starting place for an interrogation and discussion of how knowledge is constructed in this culture. Additional texts will be drawn from gender and sexuality studies, black studies, and media studies as we examine the powerful ways that knowledge can be and is differently constructed within our own culture as well as the ways that some kinds of knowledge seem to be categorically intractable across time and space.
Prerequisite: A course in theory, sociology/anthropology, literature, or philosophy.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Willie-LeBreton.

SOCI 027C. Classical Theory

Through the works of Marx, Weber, Durkheim, Simmel, DuBois, and Freud, the recurrent and foundational themes of late 19th- and early 20th-century social theory will be examined: capitalism, class conflict and solidarity, alienation and loneliness, social disorganization and community, and secularization and new forms of religiosity.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Willie-LeBreton.

SOCI 028D. Deviance

The first part of this course introduces some basic theories of why norms arise and why some people may go against them, or be labeled as doing so. It emphasizes the fact that standards of normality and deviance always involve issues of group membership, political power, and unequal opportunity. The second part looks at the special case of crime in the U.S., covering explanations focused on biology, family history, group association, physical environment, community disorganization, and life course patterns, illustrating once again the central role of power, and in this case racial inequality. The third part of the course applies the same theories to non-criminal subgroups and cultural resistance, with examples from sex/sexuality/gender, youth and music, non-orthodox religion, and extremist politics.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Reay.

SOCI 028E. Methods of Social Exploration

Social phenomena aren’t made up of a bunch of transparent facts open to all; they have to be explored using particular methods and technologies. None of these methods are wholly objective, reliable, or comprehensive, and none of them are as easy as one might think. This is mainly because evidence of social activity can only be obtained by way of further social activity, such as talking and reading, becoming involved in people’s lives, going to archives, and interacting with other powerful organizations. This course discusses these issues and covers a wide range of different methods of social exploration, including; archival and oral history; interviews; participant observation; analysis of interactions, conversations, texts, and media images; use of audio and video recording; sample surveys and questionnaires; government and academic databases; Geographic Information Systems, and network mapping. With all of these options at their fingertips researchers can hopefully use the combinations most suited to getting at what interests them, as well as better understand, critique, and make use of relevant past research.
Methods course.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Reay.

SOCI 035C. Social Movements and Nonviolent Power

Social Movements and Nonviolent Power will address the sociological literature on social movements, including their emergence and maintenance. When and why do people participate? We will also take a strategic perspective and investigate a range of tactics and methods that movements employ. We will emphasize the power in social relations upon which collective nonviolent action capitalizes and the effects of strategic choices within movements. Case studies might include the U.S. civil rights movement, the Soviet bloc revolutions, People Power in the Philippines, and the Arab Spring, among others.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Smithey.

SOCI 036B. Field Methods

In this course students are introduced to the theory and practice of field methods and their utility to sociologists. Students will design and carry out their own semester long research project employing both participant observation and in-depth interviewing.
Methods course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Viscelli.

SOCI 036C. Sociology of U.S. Labor Movement

Over decades millions of workers struggled together, often at great risk and against great odds and repression, to build the U.S. labor movement. In the process they carved out a place of dignity, prosperity, and political voice for workers at the bottom of the economic ladder. They created a path of economic mobility for minorities, women and immigrants. They provided a counterweight for the average citizen against the increasingly concentrated power and influence of modern capitalism’s most fortunate. Because the labor movement empowers the weak it has always been embattled and for decades now it has been in decline. While it contributed some to its own demise, capitalists have systematically attacked the labor movement with a carefully planned and well-funded hegemonic project that has directly challenged it, delegitimized it and legally hamstrung it. The consequences for workers and our society have been terrible. The labor movement is no longer a hedge against economic inequality and over the last several decades an ever-increasing share of the benefits of economic growth go to the top 1% of Americans while wages stagnate or decline for most Americans. Without labor our political discourse is bereft of any meaningful discussion of alternative to the corporate-sponsored neo-liberal ideology of free-markets and deregulation. The traditional avenues of a strong labor movement—the less-educated, immigrants, women, Latinos, and African-Americans—are closing. Soon, if things don’t change, there will be no labor movement to speak of. No other institution in U.S. history has been able to do what the labor movement has done for the average person. What could revitalize it? What, if anything, could replace it? This course will use theories of politics, economics, class and social movements to understand the rise and decline of the labor movement and why it was so critical in determining economic inequality.
Spring 2014. Viscelli.

SOCI 036D. Into the Field: Qualitative Methods

This course will introduce students to participant observation, interviewing, and surveys as research methods. We will read and discuss a range of studies employing these methods. Throughout the semester students will gain firsthand experience using these methods. This course will include a significant community-based learning component. Students will help to design a research study for a public elementary school, Andrew Jackson Elementary, in Philadelphia. This study will focus on why parents choose charter schools rather than their local neighborhood school. The project will aid Jackson in its efforts to attract more families from the surrounding neighborhood and may contribute to a critical debate about school choice in Philadelphia.
Methods course.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Viscelli.

SOCI 038C. Sociology of Economic Life

The discipline of economics tends to focus primarily on how markets work, i.e. how rational calculations influence commodity prices. There are many other things involved in economic life however, such as resource inequalities, institutional hierarchies, cultural worldviews, patterns of habitual interaction, and specific historical sequences of events. This class explores how consideration of these kinds of factors—power, culture, networks, and history—can be added to market models to create a fuller picture of how humans organize production, exchange, and consumption in what we currently call “the economy.” Specific topics covered include the difference between precapitalist and capitalist economies, the nature of modern advertising, the causes of financial bubbles and crashes, corporate culture and managerial behavior, the institutional arrangements behind different varieties of capitalism, the nature and effects of globalization, and the operation of gift exchange systems.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Reay.

SOCI 040B. Language, Culture and Society

(See LING 025)
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Staff.

SOCI 040G. Between the “Is” and the “Ought” Black Social and Political Thought

(Cross-listed as BLST 040G)
Our study of black social and political thought will include not only the pivotal scholarly texts, but also the social and political practice and cultural production of abolitionists, maroons, Pan-Africanists, club women, freedom fighters, poets, and the vast array of “race men and women” across the spectrum of crusades. We will explore the range of intellectual and cultural production and protest ideology/action of Blacks through the politics and social observation of the pre-emancipation period, post-emancipation liberation struggles, and the post-colonial and post-civil rights period.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Johnson.

SOCI 040H. Security and Defense

(See PEAC 040)
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Lakey.

SOCI 040I. Race and Place: A Philadelphia Story

Using Philadelphia neighborhoods as our site of study, this course will analyze the relationship between race/ethnicity and spatial inequality, emphasizing the institutions, processes, and mechanisms that shape the lives of urban dwellers. We will survey major theoretical approaches and empirical investigations of racial and ethnic stratification in cities, their concomitant policy considerations, and the impact at the local level in Philadelphia. We will focus particular attention on the role of narrative and racialized discourse in relation to the distribution of an array of economic, social, and political resources to city residents.
Eligible for BLST credit.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Johnson.

SOCI 044B. Colloquium: Art and Society

An examination of the relationship between art and society from a sociohermeneutical perspective. Literary and sociotheoretical works will be the main focus of analysis this semester. Selected works by Plato, Nietzsche, Hegel, Mann, Dostoevski, Kafka, Benjamin, Lukacs, Freud, Borges, Foucault, and Sontag will be examined.Eligible for INTP credit.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Muñoz.

SOCI 044C. Colloquium: Contemporary Social Theory

A discussion of contemporary social theory and its antecedents. The first part of the course will be devoted to a discussion of works by Nietzsche, Marx, and Freud. The second part will deal with works by contemporary theorist such as Habermas, Geertz, Foucault, Bourdieu, and Freire.
Prerequisite: SOAN 044E.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Muñoz.

SOCI 044D. Colloquium: Critical Social Theory

An overview of major developments of critical social theory since the 19th century. Readings from Marx, Freud, Nietszche, Lukacs, Adorno, Horkheimer, Benjamin, Habermas, Foucault, Bourdieu and Freire. It is highly recommended that students take SOAN 044E Colloquium: Modern Social Theory before taking this course.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Muñoz.

SOCI 044E. Colloquium: Modern Social Theory

This course is an analysis of the rise and development of modern social theory. The introduction to the colloquium deals with works by such social philosophers as Rousseau, Kant, and Hegel. The core of the colloquium focuses on selected works by Marx, Weber, Durkheim, and Freud. The colloquium is recommended for advanced work in social theory and is particularly well suited for students interested in the areas of sociology and anthropology and interpretation theory.
Eligible for INTP credit.
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Muñoz.

SOCI 048C. Sociology of Science

This class explores the wide range of work on science as a social phenomenon. After a brief discussion of key themes in the philosophy of science, it looks at the various ‘internal’ aspects of science as an institution, including its organizational structures, work practices, status systems, and forms of discourse. It then turns to the ‘external’ issues of how science relates to the rest of society, including its connection to gender, racial, and international inequality, its portrayal in the media, its relationship to technology, its conflicts with religion, and its authority as ‘objective’ truth in law and government. Authors covered will include Robert Merton, Karin Knorr, Bruno Latour, Ian Hacking, Sharon Traweek, Emily Martin, Dorothy Nelkin, and Sheila Jasanoff. The class will also involve a field trip to analyze The Franklin Institute Science Museum.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014. Reay.

SOCI 048D. Sociology of Humor

Humor and laughter are common elements of everyday life in most cultures, but what exactly are they, and what do they do? This course explores work on humor not just in sociology and anthropology, but also in linguistics, and to a lesser extent in psychology and philosophy. It suggests that humor is in fact a wonderfully complex and multifunctional phenomenon based on people managing social contradictions by switching their level of awareness. It looks at how this deceptively simple mechanism can then end up playing a number of important roles in communication, group identity formation, domination, resistance, and entertainment. The class is not a practicum. That was a joke. What does that mean? What did it do? Studying humor does not generally reduce one’s enjoyment of it, by the way.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Reay.

SOCI 062B. Sociology of Education

(See EDUC 062)
Theory course.
1 credit.
Not offered 2013–2014.

SOCI 071B. Research Seminar: Strategy and Nonviolent Struggle

(See PEAC 071B)
Writing course.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Lakey.

SOCI 095. Independent Study

Two options exist for students wishing to get credit for independent work. All students wishing to do independent work must have the advance consent of the department and of an instructor who agrees to supervise the proposed project.
Option 1 - consists of individual or group directed reading and study in fields of special interest to the students not dealt with in the regular course offerings.
Option 2 - credit may be received for practical work in which direct experience lends itself to intellectual analysis and is likely to contribute to a student’s progress in regular course work. Students must demonstrate to the instructor and the department a basis for the work in previous academic study. Students will normally be required to examine pertinent literature and produce a written report to receive credit.
0.5 or 1 credit.
Fall 2013 and spring 2014. Staff.

Sociology Seminars

SOCI 127. Race Theories

Contemporary theories of race and racism by sociologists such as Winant, Gilroy, Williams, Gallagher, Ansell, Omi, and others will be explored. Concepts and controversies explored will include racial identity and social status, the question of social engineering, the social construction of justice, social stasis, and change. The U.S. is the focus, but other countries will be examined. Without exception, an introductory course on race and/or racism is a prerequisite.
Theory course.
Eligible for BLST credit.
2 credits.
Not offered 2013–2014. Willie-LeBreton.

SOCI 129. Sociology of Technology

This seminar will explore sociological approaches to understanding the development and impact of technology. The first half will review the literature on a number of basic topics, including utopian and dystopian ideas about the impact of technology, historical and constructionist approaches to explaining technological development, and debates over the control of technological risk. The second half will further explore these ideas with respect to different areas of the application of technology, with seminar participants themselves selecting the topics, as well as finding and presenting appropriate readings. Possible topics for the second half are cities, bodies, communication, energy, transportation, virtual reality, food, and government.
2 credits.
Not offered 2013–2014. Reay.

SOCI 138. Work and Identity

This is a senior seminar about work experiences in the U.S. over the last thirty years. It looks at how different occupations and work conditions are central to the construction of identity and to the reproduction of class, racial, ethnic, and gender inequalities. It explores these issues by looking primarily at ethnographies and interviews, getting into a fair amount of detail concerning what it’s like to do different jobs. Particular topics covered include factory work (both traditional assembly-line and more recent ‘humanized’ arrangements), construction (focusing on gender aspects), managerial work, service work (typically seen as low-status), domestic labor (which is often ‘invisible’ because it is gendered as female), office work, and illegal work (i.e. sex and drugs).
2 credits.
Not offered 2013–2014. Reay.

SOCI 162. Sociology of Education

(See EDUC 162)
Prerequisite: EDUC 014 or permission of the instructor.
Theory course.
2 credits.
Not offered 2013–2014.

SOAN 180. Honors Thesis

Candidates for honors will usually write theses during the senior year. Students are urged to have their thesis proposals approved as early as possible during the junior year.
Writing course.
2 credits.
Fall 2013 and spring 2014. Staff.

Sociology/Anthropology Courses

SOAN 001A. Introduction to Anthropology and Sociology

This course offers a foundational introduction to the department’s two fields; anthropology and sociology. Taught by both a sociologist and an anthropologist, it provides a solid background to ongoing debates in the study of culture and society, highlighting the distinct but complementary theories and methods of the two disciplines. Throughout the course, we will examine fundamental theories and concepts of both sociologists and cultural anthropologists and how these have changed over time.
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Reay and Scheutze.

SOAN 020B. Urban Education

(See EDUC 068)
Theory course.
1 credit.
Spring 2014. Jones-Walker.

SOAN 030P. Introduction to GIS for Social and Environmental Analysis

(See POLS 037)
1 credit.
Fall 2013. Heckert.

SOAN 096–097. Thesis

Theses will be required of all majors. Seniors will normally take two consecutive semesters of thesis tutorial. Students are urged to discuss their thesis proposals with faculty during the spring semester of their junior year, especially if they are interested in the possibility of fieldwork. In order to receive credit for SOAN 096 students must attend SOAN 098.
Writing course (for SOAN 097 only).
1 credit each semester.
Fall 2013 and spring 2014. Staff.

SOAN 098. Thesis Writers Master Class

This class meets weekly to support sociology and anthropology students in developing the skills necessary for writing their theses, including conducting literature searches, interpreting data, formulating research questions, and writing in a way that contributes to the disciplines. The class complements and supports the work that students are doing with their thesis advisers. Students who have signed up for a senior thesis credit are automatically enrolled in the class. The class is open to only senior thesis writers.
Fall 2013. Willie-LeBreton.