Graduate Courses — Winter 2009

32100. Culture, Power, Subjectivity (=CHDV 32100). This course takes up the classic, yet endlessly fascinating subject of the relationship of historically produced cultural structures and their relationship to individual and collective forms of subjectivity. Since the topic is huge, we will address it by reading classic texts in depth, analyzing them for the diverse ways in which classic social thinkers like Marx, Durkheim, Weber, Althusser, Bourdieu and Foucault have thought about the relationship between individuals and collectivities. Key questions we will address include the ways in which social and economic formations structure the possibilities for individual human action, the relationship between religious formations and historical transformations, the role of class in the inculcation of taste and desire, and the ways in which, throughout the 19th century, new power/knowledge formations have created new ways through which subject formation takes place. Jennifer Cole. Wed. 1:30-4:20.

33101. Native Peoples of North America-1 (=CRPC 33101). (PQ. Open to undergraduates with consent of instructor) This course is a comprehensive review of Native American cultural history, including consideration of intellectual context, prehistory, ethnology, history, and the contemporary situation. R. Fogelson. TuTh 3:00-4:20.

36200. Ceramic Analysis. This course introduces students to the theoretical foundations and analytical techniques that allow archaeologists to use ceramics to make inferences about ancient societies. Ethnographic, experimental, and physical science approaches are explored to develop a realistic, integrated understanding of the nature of ceramics as a form of material culture and to assess both the kinds of interpretations of ancient people that can plausibly be made on the basis of their pottery and which techniques and research strategies may best serve to obtain useful information. Practical training in the use of the Ceramic Laboratories is included. M. Dietler. TuTh 1:30-2:50.

37202. Language in Culture II (=Ling 31200, PSYC 47002). PQ: Must be taken in sequence. This is the second part of a two-quarter sequence about the role of language in culture. Building on the first quarter's discussions of the interactional order, this quarter's class explores the semiotics of sociocultural differentiation in institutions such as schools, nations, colonial projects and liberal polities, and the simultaneous construction of those very institutions through modes of linguistic interaction. The more general aim is to investigate the constitutive role of language and semiotic figuration in sociopolitical processes. 
     We start with the notion of ideology and specifically language ideology, within the scholarly tradition of ideological critique. Language ideologies shape understandings of language and interaction by users -- both professional and non-expert -- and shape assumptions about the supposedly "natural" indexicality of linguistic forms. Language ideologies are both embedded in practices and reflexive of them; they are pervaded by the moral and political positions within a social field. To study language ideologies is to explore the nexus of language, culture and politics. We thus examine the repesentations “ implicit and explicit “ that create languages role in a social and cultural world, and that are themselves acts within it.                        
     The metapragmatic/ ideological regimentation of language in use gives rise to forms of shifting "subjectivity" or inhabitable identities. The course therefore takes up the processes by which identities are produced, and critically examines a number of concepts that have been the traditional subject matter of sociolinguistics, such as: "language" "dialect" "register" speech community code and standardization. We treat these as normative cultural constructs -- folk concepts as well as scientific ones. How are these implicated in nation-building, state-making, colonialism, and other aspects of "modernity" as a discursive project?   The course also explores boundary practices: multilingualism, translation, register-formation, and codeswitching. These require some understanding of circulation (interdiscursivity) and locality" as part of global capitalist flows. We end with a look at historical change in linguistic norms, integrating the synchronic and diachronic in real-time interactions and institutions. What is the role of linguists own ideologies in these processes? Susan Gal. TuTh 10:30-11:50                      

37301. Phonology I (=Ling 20800/30800). PQ: Ling 201, 202, 203, 206, or equiv­alent. This is an introduction to general principles of phonology, with emphasis on nongenerative theory. Jason Riggle. TuTh 1:30-2:50.

37802. Syntax-2 (=Ling 20500/30500). PQ. Part 1. Karlos Arregui Urbina. TuTh 10:30-11:50.

47300. Historical Linguistics (=LING 21300/31300). Yaroslav Gorbachov. TuTh 12:00-1:20.

47400. The Development of Creole Vernaculars and Culture (=LING 45400). The central hypothesis to be verified in this course is that competition and selection (which account for the evolution of some languages -- by some sort of hybridization -- into creole vernaculars) can also be observed in other, non-linguistic cultural domains, such as cuisine, dance, music, religion, and folk medicine. We hope to articulate ways in which findings in one domain can enrich research in another. The course is based primarily on my book The Ecology of Language Evolution (2001, Cambridge University Press) and on Robert Chaudensons Creolization of Language and Culture (2001, Routledge). These books are complemented by recent literature in anthropology and cultural studies that is relevant to specific issues discussed in the course. Salikoko Mufwene. MW 3:00-4:20.

50515. Alternative Social Theory: Tarde, Levi-Strauss, Deleuze. (PQ-Systems-1, Consent of Instructor) M. Carneiro da Cunha. Thurs 10:30-1:20.

50700. Seminar: Biopower. The politics of life in modernity has come to occupy center stage in the human sciences. Studies of modern techniques of governmentality, the naturalizations of transnational neoliberalism, the medicalization of social and historical experience, and the growing hegemony of an interventionist bioscience offer some of the most interesting and challenging models for a contemporary and cosmopolitan anthropology. This seminar will read a number of recent studies in anthropology, science studies, and critical social theory in an effort to better grasp the centrality of the life sciences and biotechnology in modern and contemporary arrangements of power.            
     We will presume that most students will have already read the germinal writings of Georges Canguilhem (The Normal and the Pathological), Michel Foucault (The Birth of the Clinic, Madness and Civilization, Discipline and Punish, Governmentality), and Giorgio Agamben (Homo Sacer). These works will not be assigned. (Students who have not read this work are also welcome to enroll, of course.) The materials assigned for the course will first address broad social-theoretical concerns with life and modernist forms of power, then turn to some powerfully analyzed ethnographies of medicine and other institutions that govern life. The third part of the course will turn to science studies and some methodologically innovative approaches to the ethnography of power/knowledge in the  contemporary moment. J. Farquhar. Tues 1:30-4:20.

52710. Publics, Privates, Secrets. George Simmel once wrote that secrecy was "one of the greatest achievements of humanity" because it added complexity to social life, making every social encounter a complex negotiation over concealment or revelation.  This course explores the critical theory of secrecy, and its others -- the public and the private.  We will assess how the deployment or withholding of knowledge is constitutive of experiences of self, social life, and state power. J. Masco. Wed 9:30-12:20.

51304. Intellectual History of Psychological Anthropology. R. Fogelson. ARR

52815. Anthropology of Sociality. In this course we examine approaches to the ways subjects are realized in relation to others. We explore these approaches through four fields of thought: historical materialism; existentialism; ethics; and anti-essentialist criticism. These themes are designed to think through mediums of relationality that range from intersubjective experience to material and legal differentiations. The course presents different ethnographic strategies for describing hierarchical sociality in conversation with these four modes of thought. K. Fikes. Tues 12:00-2:50

53315. Rethinking Travel and Migration (=CRPC 52215). Migration and travel are unusual themes in the social sciences, humanities, and even policy studies areas. These themes, for a variety of reasons, have been taken up by each of the disciplines in these fields; but rarely do writers from these disciplines engage each other. Consequently, we have amassed an enormous literature on travel-related topics that has no center/core and few points of connection. This seminar is about identifying some points of connection from the discipline of anthropology. We will identify problem spots that have emerged through various approaches to the study of travel (and political/economic migrations in particular) and then address how a selection of ethnographies have worked to bind concepts of travel to broader socio-cultural themes. K. Fikes. Thurs 10:30-1:20.

57715. Linguistic Anthropology Seminar: Narrative (=LING 57715). The goal is to find and analyze narratives in ethnographic materials: what counts as narratives, how they are (sometimes) institutionalized, their effects on social organizations and their implications for various cultural processes such as, for instance, memory and tradition, political conflict, career building, nation-making, regionalization, health-maintenance, among others. We will try various modes of narrative analysis to see how they work and why.  In the first few weeks, we review some philosophical questions about time and its experience via linguistic/textual representations, then move to some literary and theory-of- history opinions/traditions, including the question of emergent story practices and their cultural categorizations. Most of the course will focus on recognizing and analyzing various genres or their fragments in fieldnotes and interviews, in interactions, mass media products and in the ethnographic accounts of others. Seminar participants will present their own field materials or critically read ethnographies focused on narratives (or ones that include such but do not highlight them) and discuss how storytelling-in-action and in interaction operates: e.g. how it might orient and align speakers and produce the textures of social life.  S. Gal. Thurs 1:30-4:20.

58510. Anthropology of Space/Place. Materiality has emerged as a central and fertile interest in anthropology and other social sciences. Within this broad conceptual umbrella, space, place, and landscape have become critical points of focus for analyzing and interpreting peoples engagement with their physical surroundings. Once an inert backdrop to social life, a mere epiphenomenon, the material world is now perceived as a generative medium and terrain of cultural production: at once socially produced and framing sociality, shaping human actions and understandings while constraining social possibilities. The twin-question is how to go about analyzing the spatial production of social worlds, and how to account for the many different ways in which these processes unfold in varied cultural and historical settings. This course aims to expose you to the contemporary literature on spatial thought and explore various situated approaches to space/place/landscape. We will draw on several fields, anthropology and geography chiefly, but also art history, architecture, philosophy, and social theory, to understand how the triad of space/place/landscape work on, in, and through different social worlds, and their role in the formation of social experience, perception, and imagination. The objective of the course is to provide you with a solid foundation in contemporary spatial theory and help you develop critical tools for thinking through the articulation of space and the social in your research setting.F.G. Richard. Wed. 1:30-4:20.