Africa and Anthropology

Africa and Anthropology: Power, Continuity, and Change
Sub-Saharan Africa has long represented primitive mysteries for Europeans and North Americans, as a ‘Dark Continent’ full of exotic people and animals. Even now, many Americans learn little about Africa and Africans except for ‘thin’ media reports of political, economic, and ecological upheaval or persistent poverty, disease, and despair. This course provides a ‘thick’ description and analysis of contemporary African conditions using ethnographies and films. We will not be exploring ‘traditional African cultures’ outside of their historical contexts or generalizing about ‘what African culture really is.’ Rather, our focus will be on understanding social continuity and change alongside cultural diversity and commonality. Topics will include colonialism, critical kinship studies, African feminism, environmental management, witchcraft and religion. Throughout the course African ideas of power – what it is, who has it, and why –unify these diverse topics as social relations. (formerly SOAN 0232) 3 hrs. lect.
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ANTH 0232

All Sections in Fall 2022

Fall 2022

ANTH0232A-F22 Lecture (Sheridan)