Theory and Methodology of Social Anthropology

Instructor(s): Eftihia Voutira and Ioannis Manos

Course abstract:

Social anthropology is the only social science discipline that is defined in terms of its method rather than its subject-matter. This course presents the evolution of anthropological thought from the early 20th century phase of ethnographic realism to the late 20th century trend of anthropology as cultural critique. It also identifies the different anthropological schools of thought understood as ‘national traditions’ (e.g., UK, France, and Germany).

The course uses as basic readings the ‘classical’ ethnographic studies that constitute the core of anthropology as a distinct discipline that studies the inter-relations between ‘culture’ and ‘society’ by focusing on an understanding of the notion of ‘cultural difference’ that constitutes the key element of social identities as they are studied and experienced in the context of contemporary societies.

Indicative bibliography:

Appadurai , Modernity at large : cultural dimensions of globalization (1996)

Harris, The Rise of Anthropological Theory. 2nd ed. Altanira Press (2001)