ANTH& 206: Cultural Anthropology

Class Program
Weekly Contact Hours
Course ID
Meets Degree Requirements For
Social Science

Introduction to basic methods and theories used by sociocultural anthropologists in the field, with a focus on the dynamic nature of culture. Social and cultural variations of human kind will be analyzed by comparing the life ways of various Western and non-Western peoples.

Grading Basis

Course Learning Outcomes

Core Topics



  1. Introduction to the field of sociocultural anthropology: fieldwork, culture shock and self-awareness
  2. Ethnocentrism and culture relativity in field work – awareness of self and bias
  3. Nature of culture and the social construction of race, caste and class
  4. Language and thought: How does language acquisition affect our group definitions and identities?
  5. Kinship and descent: Who has what family obligations?
  6. Gender, identity and marriage systems: Who can one marry and why?
  7. Economic systems: access to resources, status and wealth
  8. Exchange and the gift: Who do we trade with and how? local reciprocity to international trading
  9. Political systems, cultural change, and cultural contact
  10. Religious systems: continuity and change