Sociology and Anthropology
(For 2016–2017 academic year)
Professors Aveni, Bigenho, Hyslop, Kerber, R. Levine, Loe, Moran, Ries
Associate Professors Benson, Henke, Hsu, Lopes (Chair), Spadola
Assistant Professors De Lucia, Juarez, Russo, Shever, Simmons, Villarrubia
Sociology and anthropology study human cultures and societies, past and present, on a comparative basis. These disciplines are concerned with analyzing and understanding the social structures and values that shape our lives, as well as the institutions and social forces of our own and other societies. The major in sociology or anthropology provides an excellent preparation for graduate study and a variety of careers, including law, education, business, public administration, journalism, health, counseling, and social work. Sociology and anthropology graduates also pursue careers in local, national, and international non-profit organizations.
The department offers two majors, one in anthropology and one in sociology. Students in the Class of 2016 and beyond follow the anthropology (ANTH) or sociology (SOCI) requirements listed below. Declared sociology and anthropology (SOAN) majors in the Class of 2015 follow the former SOAN requirements, refer to the 2012–2013 Catalogue for SOAN course descriptions.
Anthropology is the study of human beings in all their complexity. The scope of anthropology is truly global, as it aims to describe and analyze the full diversity of the human experience and cultural creativity across time and space. Anthropology recognizes that human beings are, simultaneously, social actors who create cultures and the products of those cultures. Using a broad array of research methods, including participant-observation and archaeological excavation, anthropologists investigate the historical composition of societies, their transformations, and their contemporary forms. We seek to understand the commonalities and differences in the identities, experiences, discourses, and beliefs of people around the world. We connect the details of people’s everyday lives to large-scale social systems and cultural forces and reveal that seemingly innate or natural differences among human groups are the result of historical, social, and political-economic processes. The curriculum integrates classroom and out-of-classroom learning, encouraging students to pursue off-campus study and independent fieldwork or research with collections.
The anthropology major consists of nine courses, including five required courses and four electives. In order to be admitted to the major, a student must have completed ANTH 102 and ANTH 103 by the end of the sophomore year, and majors must earn a minimum grade of C in both courses. Students not meeting this grade requirement by the end of their sophomore year must consult with the department chair before continuing in the major. In keeping with the University’s policy, no declarations of major or minor will be accepted after the fall full-term withdrawal period of a student’s senior year.
To qualify for graduation, a minimum GPA of 2.0 is required in all ANTH courses and all other courses counting toward the major. The department will accept for major credit no more than two courses taken at another institution and no more than one independent studies course in the department, except in special circumstances as approved by the department.
All anthropology majors must meet the following sets of requirements:
- ANTH 102, Introduction to Cultural Anthropology and ANTH 103, Introduction to Archaeology (These courses must be completed by the end of the sophomore year with a grade of C or higher.)
- ANTH 211, Craft of Anthropological Inquiry (Students are strongly encouraged to complete this course before engaging in off-campus study unless their approved study abroad program includes an equivalent course.) Students may petition their adviser to substitute another methods course taken at Colgate or as part of a Colgate study group or approved program.
- ANTH 350, Thinking Anthropologically: A Course in Theory (Students are strongly encouraged to take this course in the junior year.)
- ANTH 452, Senior Seminar in Anthropology
- Four anthropology electives, selected by the student, within these guidelines: a. At least one course in archaeology, museum studies, or material culture studies (MC) ANTH 202, Ancient States and Empires
ANTH/ASTR 230, Astronomy in Culture
ANTH/ARTS 248, African Art
ANTH/ARTS 249, Art and Architecture of the Ancient Americas
ANTH/ARTS 250, Native Art of North America
ANTH 253, Field Methods and Interpretation in Archaeology
ANTH 300, Museum Studies in Native American Cultures
ANTH 356, Ethical Issues in Native American Archaeology
ANTH 360, Comparative Cosmologies
ANTH 372, Anthropological Theory and Archaeological Praxis
ANTH 376, Archaeology of the Inkas and their Ancestors
b. At least one course on a geographic region or area (GR)
ANTH/ARTS 248, African Art
ANTH/ARTS 249, Art and Architecture of the Ancient Americas
ANTH/ARTS 250, Native Art of North America
ANTH 252, Muslim Societies in Transition
ANTH 253, Field Methods and Interpretation in Archaeology
ANTH 300, Museum Studies in Native American Cultures
ANTH 356, Ethical Issues in Native American Archaeology
ANTH/ALST 357, Indigenous Politics of Latin America
ANTH 358, Native American Cultures
ANTH 363, Globalization and Social Change in Latin America
ANTH/ALST 365, Andean Lives
ANTH 371, Gender and Society in Africa
ANTH 376, Archaeology of the Inkas and their Ancestors
ANTH 382, Nations, Power, Islam: Muslim Identity and Community in the Global Age
c. At least two of these anthropology electives must be at the 300 level.
d. Two courses taken on a Colgate study group or approved program may be counted as electives toward the anthropology major in categories (a), (b), and/or (c) above.
e. SOCI 201, Classical Social Theory, may count as an anthropology elective.
f. Fieldwork Requirement (FR). In addition, the major in anthropology requires that all students gain experience with ethnographic or archaeological fieldwork or collections of material culture, ideally to provide the basis for a thesis in the senior year. This requirement can be met in a number of ways, including independent research as part of an off-campus study program or summer research programs, subject to approval by the department. Students should consult with their advisers about the various ways in which this requirement can be fulfilled, and about opportunities that best meet the individual needs and interests of the student.
Minor Program in Anthropology
The minor program consists of ANTH 102, 103, and three other courses, including at least two at the 300 level, for a total of five anthropology courses. In order to be admitted to the minor, a student should have completed ANTH 102 and 103 by the end of the sophomore year. Minors must earn a minimum grade of C in ANTH 102 and 103. A minimum GPA of 2.00 is required in all ANTH courses and other courses counting toward the minor. In keeping with the University’s policy, no declarations of major or minor will be accepted after the fall full-term course withdrawalperiod of a student’s senior year. The department will accept for minor credit no more than one course taken at another institution and no more than one independent studies course in the department, except in special circumstances as approved by the department.
Honors and High Honors in Anthropology
Majors may qualify for honors in anthropology by achieving at graduation a GPA of 3.50 in all departmental courses and an overall GPA of 3.30, or for high honors by achieving at graduation a GPA of 3.70 in all departmental courses and an overall GPA of 3.30, and submitting a thesis judged by department faculty to be worthy of honors or high honors.
Any student in the junior year who believes he or she will reach the qualifying GPA is strongly encouraged to discuss potential honors or high honors projects with departmental faculty. All seniors will normally enroll in ANTH 452 in the fall of their senior year and begin work on a thesis of their own design. Those students pursuing honors or high honors will continue to develop their seminar theses by enrolling in ANTH 495, Independent Study for Honors and High Honors, in the spring semester (if a substantial number of students are pursuing honors and high honors in a given year, the group may be organized into a formal honors seminar). Working with the seminar professor and at least one other faculty member, the student shall write and defend an extended project before department faculty at a special event at the end of spring semester. Honors and high honors projects should demonstrate the ability to work creatively and independently and to synthesize theoretical, methodological, and substantive materials. Note: ANTH 495 is an additional requirement for students pursuing honors and high honors and cannot be counted as one of the electives required for the major.
Sociology is the scientific study of the organization and functioning of societies, their major institutions, groups, and values. Sociologists are particularly interested in understanding and explaining social issues and problems, and the sources of stress and change in contemporary and historical societies. Our courses provide students with critical perspectives on a wide range of major social issues, including globalization, immigration, social stratification and inequality, race and ethnic relations, gender and sexuality, age, aging, and ageism, unemployment, crime and deviance, conflict and war, environmental politics, social movements, popular culture, and media and politics. In addition, students take courses on classical and contemporary sociological theory, research design, and qualitative and quantitative research methods. The culmination of our curriculum is the required senior seminar. This course provides an opportunity for students to draw on their substantive and methodological training to complete an independent research project on a topic of their choice.
The sociology major consists of a minimum of 9.50 courses, including a minimum of 4.50 required courses and five electives. In order to be admitted to the major, a student must have completed SOCI 101 by the end of the sophomore year. SOCI 101 is the required entry-level course for the major, and majors must earn a minimum grade of C in this course. Students not meeting this grade requirement by the end of their sophomore year must consult with the department chair before continuing in the major. In keeping with the University’s policy, no declarations of major or minor will be accepted after the fall full-term course withdrawal period of a student’s senior year.
To qualify for graduation, a minimum GPA of 2.00 is required in all SOCI courses and other courses counting toward the major. The department will accept for major credit no more than two courses taken at another institution and no more than one independent study course in the department, except in special circumstances as approved by the department chair.
All sociology majors must meet the following sets of requirements:
- SOCI 101, Introduction to Sociology (This course must be completed by the end of the sophomore year with a grade of C or higher.)
- SOCI 201, Classical Social Theory
- SOCI 250, Sociological Research Design and Methods
- One half-credit (0.50) or one full-credit (1.00) topical methods course chosen from the following courses:
ANTH 211, The Craft of Anthropological Inquiry
GEOG 252, Community-Based Participatory Research (0.50-credit course)
SOCI/GEOG 251, Media Frame and Content Analysis (0.50-credit
SOCI/GEOG 253, Interviews (0.50-credit course)
SOCI 254, Community-Based Participatory Research
Five sociology electives of which three courses must be at the 300 level. (Students may take one 200- or 300-level anthropology (ANTH) course to satisfy one of their five electives, with permission from their adviser.) It is strongly encouraged that at least one of these five electives be research-intensive or involve community based learning. Research Intensive courses (RI) are built around analysis of quantitative and/or qualitative sociological data to help understand key social institutions and issues. RI courses provide in-depth experience with research methods, and students use those methods to develop class-based research projects on the topic of the course. Community Based courses (CB) combine traditional class-based learning with first-hand experiences engaging with local communities. CB courses incorporate internships and action research opportunities where students may develop research projects and communication strategies to benefit communities in the Central New York region.
SOCI 453, Senior Seminar in Sociology or SOCI 494, Honors Seminar
Minor Program in Sociology
A minor in sociology consists of SOCI 101, SOCI 201 or SOCI 250, and three full-credit courses, including at least two at the 300 level, for a total of five courses. In order to be admitted to the minor, a student must have completed SOCI 101 by the end of the sophomore year. Minors must earn a minimum grade of C in SOCI 101. A minimum GPA of 2.00 is required in all SOCI courses and other courses counting toward the minor. In keeping with the University’s policy, no declarations of major or minor will be accepted after the fall full-term course withdrawal period of a student’s senior year. The department will accept for minor credit no more than one course taken at another institution and no more than one independent study course in the department, except in special circumstances as approved by the department.
Honors and High Honors in Sociology
Majors may qualify for honors in sociology by achieving at graduation a 3.50 GPA in all departmental courses and an overall GPA of 3.30, or for high honors by achieving at graduation a 3.70 GPA in all departmental courses and an overall GPA of 3.30.
Any student who believes he or she will reach the qualifying GPA is invited to apply for honors or high honors in the spring term of his or her junior year. If accepted, students enroll in SOCI 494, Honors Seminar, in fall of the senior year and SOCI 495, Honors Thesis Workshop, in spring of the senior year. The student, working with the seminar professor and at least one additional adviser, shall write and defend an extended project proposal in the fall and complete a substantial research paper during the spring semester and present it in a special department event. The designation “honors,” “high honors,” or neither, will be determined at the conclusion of the semester by the departmental faculty. Honors and high honors projects should demonstrate the ability to work creatively and independently and to synthesize theoretical, methodological, and substantive materials. Note: Students accepted to take SOCI 494 in the fall term are expected to also enroll in SOCI 495 during the spring term to complete their theses, regardless of whether the student ultimately achieves honors. SOCI 495 is an additional requirement for students pursuing honors or high honors and does not count as an elective toward the sociology major.
Honors and High Honors
Majors may qualify for departmental honors by achieving at graduation a 3.50 GPA in all departmental courses and an overall GPA of 3.30, or for high honors by achieving at graduation a 3.70 GPA in all departmental courses and an overall GPA of 3.30.
Students who expect to qualify and who seek honors or high honors will enroll in the honors/high honors seminar SOCI 494, which will be a tenth course for students with an emphasis in anthropology or sociology and an eleventh course for students taking the sociology and anthropology emphasis. The student, working with at least one SOAN faculty adviser beyond the seminar professor, shall write and submit a substantial paper for this course and shall defend it before faculty members in the department. The designation “honors,” “high honors,” or neither, will be determined at the conclusion of the defense. This paper must be a substantially different, revised version of the student’s senior seminar paper, or a paper on an entirely different topic. Honors and high honors projects should demonstrate the ability to work creatively and independently and to synthesize theoretical, methodological, and substantive materials. Such a project should be planned and begun in the fall term of the senior year (although earlier consultation with department faculty is encouraged), with the research and final writing completed in the spring term when the student is enrolled in SOCI 494.
See “Honors and Awards: Sociology and Anthropology” in Chapter VI.
The sociology and anthropology department, along with departments in the social sciences, arts and humanities, and natural sciences, offers an interdisciplinary major in Native American studies with a study group in Santa Fe.
Students are strongly encouraged to expand the scope of their academic experiences by studying off campus. SOAN faculty help guide each student toward the off-campus study experiences that complement and build on his or her overall course plan; we encourage students not to think of off-campus study as a semester-long break from Colgate but rather as a way to enhance on-campus course work. Students often use off-campus study as a way to collect data for use in senior seminar and honors projects. Since Anthropology majors are required to complete a fieldwork component as part of their coursework, off-campus study can often be a rewarding and useful way to fulfill this requirement. More information on off-campus study can be found on our website: colgate.edu/academics/departments-and-programs/sociology-and-anthropology/off-campus-study.
The Longyear Museum of Anthropology
The Longyear museum of Anthropology enhances the teaching and research facilities of the department. The museum, founded in 1965 and named after Dr. John M. Longyear III, professor of anthropology, emeritus, contains archaeological and ethnographic collections from a wide range of cultures around the world. The collections of African art, Canadian First Nations art, Iroquois archaeological materials from central New York, and the central Mexican (Guerrero) stone sculptures are extensive.
Students may take advantage of the resources of the museum in a variety of ways. ANTH 253, Field Methods and Interpretation in Archaeology and ANTH 300, Museum Studies in Native American Cultures offer students the opportunity to become acquainted with the museum holdings and to carry out research projects on selected collections of artifacts. Students may also arrange independent studies working with the museum collections and receive credit in either the Department of Sociology and Anthropology or in the Native American Studies Program, which is sponsored by the Division of University Studies. Students are encouraged to inquire at the offices of the curators of the Longyear Museum of Anthropology, Professors Kerber and Lorenz, concerning independent studies projects in archaeology or art history, as well as for information concerning opportunities for summer programs in archaeological, art historical, or social anthropological fieldwork. Information concerning museum internship programs and opportunities in museum studies may be obtained by contacting Professors Lorenz and Kerber.
Course Offerings: Anthropology
ANTH courses count toward the Social Relations, Institutions, and Agents area of inquiry requirement, unless otherwise noted.
Archaeology/Museum Studies/Material Culture Studies courses are noted as (MC)
Geographic Region courses are noted as (GR)
Fieldwork Requirement courses are noted as (FR)
102 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
This course provides an introduction to cultural anthropology and is intended to help students come to a better understanding of human cultures and societies through the analysis and comparison of specific cases. Students study diverse societies from a wide range of geographic areas and examine topics such as kinship and marriage, economic organization, religion, gender, and social change. Students learn about some of the major theories and theorists in cultural anthropology and examine the way cultural anthropologists collect and interpret data, particularly in the course of fieldwork. Enrollment is limited to first-year and sophomore students. (Formerly SOAN 102.)
103 Introduction to Archaeology
This course introduces students to the basic concepts and issues of archaeology today through an examination of both method and theory. Topics include data analysis and interpretation, culture history, prehistoric technology and settlements, and cultural resources management. Enrollment is limited to first-year and sophomore students. (Formerly SOAN 103.)
202 Ancient States and Empires (MC)
This course provides an introduction to the study of the archaeological and literary records of selected ancient states and empires of the Old and New Worlds. The course addresses such questions as when and where did cities and states first emerge? What forces accounted for the emergence of ancient states and empires? What were some of the institutions and practices that provided stability and cohesion in the social and political lives of these societies? Why did ancient states collapse? Each term, examples are chosen from the following civilizations or regions of the world: Africa, Mesopotamia, China, Southeast Asia, Mesoamerica, and the Andes. The course compares and contrasts achievements in these civilizations and critically evaluates the role of Euro-American scholarship in defining these achievements. (Formerly SOAN 202.)
211 The Craft of Anthropological Inquiry
M. Bigenho, E. Shever, E. Spadola
This course introduces students to the research methods that anthropologist use to study human begins in all their complexity: the range of qualitative, in-depth, and participatory techniques that comprise ethnography. Through a series of hands-on active research projects, students will learn how to investigate the complex social world we live in, and analyze what they find. The course covers the research process from asking compelling questions, to collecting qualitative data and critically analyzing it, to choosing how to present it. The course also addresses the ethical implications and responsibilities that accompany learning about human beings by Interacting with them, and then representing them to others. The readings, lectures, and discussions will explore how anthropological knowledge is generated and anthropology’s relationship to political-economic power, historical experience, and personal identity. Students will also gain valuable research methods skills for career choices. (Formerly SOAN 211.)
218 Practices of Peace and Conflict — War in Lived Experience
This course is crosslisted as PCON 218. For course description, see “Peace and Conflict: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 218.)
221 Kinship and Marriage
What is family? What is kinship? What is marriage? These are questions that have been central to anthropology since its inception in the 19th century. This course examines the culture and political economy of family life, kinship, and marriage in a broad range of human societies, ranging from small-scale communities to highly industrialized states. In addition to looking at the theories, methods, and data that are relevant to the study of kinship in anthropology and related disciplines, the class analyzes and compares different systems of descent and inheritance; various types of households, marriage patterns, and networks of exchange; and the myriad ways in which systems of kinship and marriage are informed by ideologies of gender and vice versa. The class also evaluates some of the recent classics on kinship in America as well as selected aspects of contemporary theoretical debates bearing on kinship and class, lesbian and gay kinship, and the new reproductive technologies. No first-year students are admitted. (Formerly SOAN 301.)
230 Astronomy in Culture (MC)
This course is crosslisted as ASTR 230. For course description, see “Astronomy under Physics and Astronomy; Pre-Engineering: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 230.)
244 Who Owns Culture?
Who owns a song? Who owns the tango dance? Who owns knowledge about medicinal plants? Key anthropological questions about culture and property intersect in each of these questions. Native and indigenous societies, whose views on cultural property and heritage have long been marginalized, bring their own perspectives to these questions. With reference to critical anthropological literature, this course uses specific case studies to examine local and global intellectual property and cultural heritage regimes. The topics in this course intersect with the fields of legal anthropology, cultural studies, Native American studies, museum studies, and indigenous studies.
245 Nature, Culture, and Politics
This course is crosslisted as SOCI 245. For course description, see “Sociology: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 245.)
248 African Art (MC, GR)
This course is crosslisted as ARTS 248. For course description, see “Art and Art History: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 248.)
249 Art and Architecture of the Ancient Americas (MC, GR)
This course is crosslisted as ARTS 249. For course description, see “Art and Art History: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 249.
250 Native Art of North America (MC, GR)
This course is crosslisted as ARTS 250. For course description, see “Art and Art History: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 250.)
252 Muslim Societies in Transition (GR)
How has mass education of women promoted Islamic revival from Niger to Indonesia? How have new media challenged Muslim authorities in Saudi Arabia? How do Chinese Muslims endure communism? This course compares Muslim-majority societies across the contemporary Islamic world with an emphasis on the distinct and shifting social institutions and practices that bind them. Major topics include changing social institutions under modern imperialism and emergent capitalism, the rise of nation-states and national identities, and the current Islamic revival. The course also addresses contemporary social changes in religious authority and hierarchy, gender and sexuality, religious and ethnic minorities, and technologies and new media. (Formerly SOAN 252.) This course is crosslisted as MIST 252.
253 Field Methods and Interpretation in Archaeology (MC, GR, FR)
This course provides students with hands-on experience in procedures archaeologists employ in collecting, processing, and reporting data. The course revolves around two basic premises: learning about archaeology includes doing archaeology, and doing archaeology involves more than just digging. Training in archaeological fieldwork and data processing is based upon an ongoing research project in Central New York. Each student has the opportunity to participate in various aspects of this research from excavation and field recording to cataloguing and analysis. The culmination of the course is a detailed report based upon research conducted during the semester. Class size is limited to 15 students. (Formerly SOAN 353.)
300 Museum Studies in Native American Cultures (MC, GR, FR)
This course provides an introduction to museum studies with a special emphasis on the interpretation and representation of Native American cultures of the Western Hemisphere. Through readings, lectures, discussions, visits to regional museums, and design of a virtual exhibition, students are introduced to the theory and practice of museology; the care, conservation, and interpretation of material culture collections; and the use of material culture in research and public education. In addition, the course examines 1) the origins and evolution of the ongoing debate concerning representation of Native Americans in museums, 2) the changing relationship between native people and national cultural institutions, and 3) the future of museums on the highly contested multicultural stage of the 21st century. No first-year students are admitted. (Formerly SOAN 300.)
315 Gender and Culture
This course focuses on gender as a culturally constructed, historically variable, and politically contested category rather than an immutable biological “given.” This course has two major objectives: first, to develop a cross-cultural understanding of femininity, masculinity, androgyny, and gendered phenomena generally by examining and comparing gender relations and gender ideologies in a wide variety of human societies, ranging from small bands of hunters and gatherers to post-industrial states; and second, to develop a critical understanding of the types of theories, methods, and data that are relevant to the study of gender and sexuality — including heteronormativity, same-sex relations, transgender practices and identities, “third sexes,” “third genders” — in anthropology and related disciplines. No first-year students are admitted. (Formerly SOAN 315.)
316 The Sacred, the Symbolic, the Senses
N. Ries, E. Spadola
This course explores the symbolic practices through which people create and negotiate cultural value and meaning. It takes as its starting premise the idea that all social activity is symbolic as well as sensual and that, through ethnographic observation, one can gain insight into the cultural meanings implicit in the things people do and say. Students examine formal, sacred ritual performances and folkloric myths, while looking equally at the diffuse symbolic practices of contemporary life. The course involves active participant observation as well as substantial engagement with theoretical questions anthropologists have posed about religion, ritual, and symbol over the last century. (Formerly SOAN 316.)
322 Introduction to Medical Anthropology
This course introduces students to medical anthropology—the study of the relationships among cultures, social systems, the environment, and disease and healing. Interpretations of health and illness, and the experience of one’s body are often taken for granted. Yet our ideas about and experiences of health, disease, and medicine are profoundly shaped by culture; by transnational flow of people, ideas, and resources; by histories of colonialism and structural inequalities; and by the development of new technologies. This course introduces students to approaches used by medical anthropologists to study the social, cultural, economic, and political dimensions of the human experience of the body, health, illness, and healing. Topics covered include cultural interpretations of sickness and healing, cultural ideas about the body, social and environmental causes of illness, the effects of poverty on health, the roles of doctors and healers in society, cultural clashes and ethical issues in health care delivery, anthropological critiques of Western biomedicine, and the place of medical anthropology in the study of public health.
337 Globalization and Culture
This course is crosslisted as SOCI 337. For course description, see “Sociology: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 337.)
339 Corporations and Power
Business corporations are among the most influential institutions on the earth today. This course examines the place of corporations in defining the contemporary world, focusing on their roles both in global political-economic and social systems and in people’s personal lives. It considers how studying business corporations can help to better understand capitalism, globalization, work, consumerism, law, inequality, social justice, and cultural change. The course delves into case studies that follow transnational corporations from the United States and England, to South Africa and Papua New Guinea, and back again. In addition, the course includes a research component in which students will conduct original fieldwork and learn to use qualitative data analysis (QDA) software to analyze their data.
350 Thinking Anthropologically: A Course in Theory
M. Moran, N. Ries
Anthropologists are philosophers of the social. With firm roots in classical social theory, anthropologists have always questioned the relationship of materiality and imagination in human culture, the dialectic of individual and social, the structures of power and authority, the pull of kinship and cosmology, and the cultural patterning of time, space, gender, and story. Anthropology trains our attention on big questions of comparative and global import, but seeks answers in concrete things that people do, say, and make. Anthropological theory thus rests on the empiricism of ethnography, archaeology, and material studies, and provides the questions that drive research. This course links contemporary theoretical work in the discipline with essential forerunner texts and projects. It also considers influential texts from theorists outside the discipline proper, recognizing that anthropology takes insights from many theoretical quarters, and in turn informs theoretical endeavors across the social sciences and humanities. Prerequisite: ANTH 102 (formerly SOAN 102).
356 Ethical Issues in Native American Archaeology (MC, GR)
This course examines a range of significant ethical issues relating to the archaeology of Native Americans in North America primarily, but also to some extent in Central and South America. Students not only read about and discuss conflicting perspectives leading to ethical dilemmas, but also propose solutions and evaluate existing policies to combat such problems. Some of the key topics covered in the course include the conservation ethic and stewardship; excavation and repatriation of Native American skeletal remains and sacred objects; looting, collecting, and commodification of Native American archaeological sites and artifacts; and public and postgraduate education. In short, the class actively engages in the critical ethical, theoretical, and legal debates surrounding Native American archaeology that have emerged over the past 30 years. Emphasis is placed on class participation and discussion. (Formerly SOAN 356.)
357 Indigenous Politics of Latin America
At the end of the 20th century, different indigenous or natives peoples’ voices seemed to become more prominent in Latin American social movements. These movements included an uprising to stop the advances of globalization, struggles to control resources, demands for dignity and recognition, and struggles against corporate environmental degradation. The apparent resurgence of Latin American indigenous politics is connected, in part, to global initiatives, like the work on what would become the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Indigenous politics in Latin America ultimately pose question about customary, national, and international legal frameworks. This course works at the intersection of local and global understandings of what it means to be indigenous in different Latin American contexts. The course is taught through the disciplinary lens of anthropology, and readings are selected from case studies in Mexico, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, and Bolivia. This course is crosslisted as ALST 357.
358 Native American Cultures (GR)
This course focuses on the comparative and historical study of Native American cultures and societies throughout the Americas. Through the reading of several ethnographies, the class compares and contrasts Native American social, religious, political, and economic institutions and practices from the time of European contact to the present day. No first-year students are admitted. (Formerly SOAN 358.)
360 Comparative Cosmologies (MC)
This course concentrates on the description and analysis of cosmological models and world views, primarily as revealed through myth, developed by a variety of ancient and contemporary societies. One goal in formulating a contrast between Western and non-Western aspects of world view is determining which concepts and ideas might emerge as common to all cultures as opposed to being unique in American society: Do all societies believe in a beginning and an end to their universe? To what extent are cosmological ideas reflected in urban planning and particularly in the design of sacred space? In what specific ways do developed world views depend upon cycles of social interaction? This course is open to juniors and seniors only. (Formerly SOAN 360.)
362 Political Anthropology: Conflict and Cooperation
This course examines human political action in a variety of societies, both within and outside established political structures. Beginning with the attempt to construct truly cross-cultural definitions of power and politics, the class looks at examples of both centralized and un-centralized systems of authority and management. Topics include the management of cooperation and collective action in the absence of formal leadership roles; the use of informal mechanisms such as gossip, witchcraft, and influence; succession to office and the symbols and ceremonies surrounding the transfer of power; the construction of group identities based on race, ethnicity, and class; gender relations as a domain of political action; ethnicity, nationalism, and ethnic conflict; and the particular perspective anthropology can bring to the study of politics. No first-year students are admitted. (Formerly SOAN 362.)
363 Globalization and Social Change in Latin America
Latin America has been globalized since before Napolean invented the term “Latin America” to describe the Spanish, Portuguese, and French colonies to our south. This course explores the changing reality of what globalization means in Latin America. It examines the legacies of European colonization and African slavery; the struggles against transnational, national, and local forms of inequality; and the different ways that globalization is experience by people today. Through case studies from South, Central, and North America, students focus on the themes of ethnicity, race, gender, social class, national citizenship, and transnational market production and consumption. The course uses an anthropological lens to analyze pressing social issues affecting Latin America, and Latin Americans, today. This course is crosslisted as ALST 363.
365 Andean Lives (GR)
While the Andes regions may evoke quaint images often seen in tourism advertisements, a focus on the people living in this region reflects globally interconnected dynamics. The course engages with diverse authors who write about the Andes: as a place steeped in highland indigenous traditions; as the place of the Inca Empire; as a place of rural communities in which collective action can take priority over individual interest; as the original source of the coca leaf that has ritual significance through the region and contested political significance in the international sphere; as the birthplace of a Maoist guerrilla movement in the last gasp of the Cold War; and as the place where social movements have challenged global economics systems and brought an indigenous president to power. Through details about the lives of those who reside in the Andes, this course brings together anthropological and historical views of this region with cases primarily from Peru, Bolivia, and Ecuador. No first-year students admitted. This course is crosslisted as ALST 365.
371 Gender and Society in Africa (GR)
This course examines traditional notions about men, women, and reproduction from a number of African societies. It focuses on the impact of European colonialism and other foreign political and economic institutions on women and men. Finally, the class studies the role of gender in present-day African states, including participation in national life, and the challenges and options presented by the future. No first-year students are admitted. (Formerly SOAN 371.)
372 Anthropological Theory and Archaeological Praxis (MC)
This course examines the interplay between theoretical trends in anthropology and the emergence of a reflexive practice of archaeology. Formal archaeology in the United States was a latecomer to anthropology, appearing during the era of Franz Boas. Somewhat later, the field became methodologically standardized as a result of the New Deal. After World War II, Americanist archaeology became a battle ground for competing perspectives in anthropology, fueled in part by the appearance of the National Science Foundation. Today, archaeology in the United States and Europe confronts and integrates numerous new critiques and theoretical perspectives, many of which arrive from recent trends in anthropology and various disciplines in the humanities and social sciences. Each week of this course covers a different theoretical framework in anthropology and its application to or relationship with archaeology. Among the topics addressed are cultural evolutionary theory, geoarchaeology, postcolonial critiques, practice theory, embodiment theory, gender archaeology, critical theory, discourse analysis, and indigenous archaeologies. The overarching goal is to assess the state of the art in anthropological approaches to the production of knowledge in archaeology. (Formerly SOAN 372.)
374 Anthropology of Media: Mass-Mediated Cultures
This course examines media in local, national, and global contexts. More specifically, it draws on media theory and on specific ethnographic cases to discern the social force of modern mass-mediated communication within and across contemporary cultures. Topics include the technologization of old media, language and performance; the emergence of mass-mediated “imagined” communities; and new social media networks. No first-year students admitted. (Formerly SOAN 374.) This course is crosslisted as FMST 374.
376 Archaeology of the Inkas and their Ancestors (MC, GR)
This course explores the many cultures that flourished in the Central Andes of South America, from the Inka Empire to the earliest inhabitants during the Paleolithic. By examining the cities, shrines, and habitations they left behind, archaeology allows for unique glimpses into the Pre-Columbian past in an area of the world with no written records prior to the 16th century. Students trace the development of long-distance trade, the origins of agriculture, the spread of early religious traditions, and the formation of the first cities and empires in South America. In addition to learning the culture history of the Central Andes, students engage in contemporary debates including cultural tourism and the popularization of the Andean past; art markets, looting, and ownership of archaeological remains; and the relationship of present-day Andean communities to their material heritage. A background in archaeology is beneficial but not required. (Formerly SOAN 376.)
378 Social Theory of Everyday Life
Since classical times, philosophers and historians have studied and recorded the details of everyday life with an eye to grasping the meaning of social practice. The past 50 years, however, have seen the bourgeoning of an exciting body of critical theory on the quotidian. Much of this work is concerned with profound questions about how the systems, structures, and practices of modernity shape basic human interactions with things, with places, and with other persons, and how these, in turn, reproduce social structures. This course presents sociological and anthropological texts concerned with everyday domesticity, cuisine, gesture, movement, activity, entertainment, talk, schooling, and bureaucracy, and explores the theoretical paradigms of knowledge, practice, and power to which these texts are ultimately addressed. No first-year students admitted. (Formerly SOAN 378.) This course is crosslisted as SOCI 378.
382 Nations, Power, Islam: Muslim Identity and Community in the Global Age (GR)
Muslims today belong at once to a global community of the faithful and to particular ethnic and national bodies. This course examines the social significance of these intersections of identity and community: what political, cultural, and religious conflicts and negotiations mark Muslim identity in the global age? Initial readings survey the colonial age, which forced the integration of Muslim communities into the global capitalist and state systems. With this foundation students then address specific conflicts and congruencies of contemporary Muslim identity in both the Muslim world and the West: between Islamic law and national-state laws; between local Islamic norms and transnational flows of media, persons, and products; between popular Islam and political power. How do these issues affect Muslims and their neighbors? How do they affect geopolitics? What is the present and future of the “global village”? (Formerly SOAN 382.)
390 Anthropology Fieldwork Requirement Abroad
This course number is used for approved fieldwork requirement courses taken abroad.
452 Senior Seminar in Anthropology
In this capstone seminar for the anthropology major students design original research projects grounded in recent anthropological theory and relevant literature on their topics and collect and analyze appropriate ethnographic or cultural data; and each student writes a significant thesis paper. Seminars also focus on intensive reading about select theoretical issues in contemporary anthropology; the specific focus of the seminar reading depends on the instructor. Open to seniors only. Note: This seminar is normally offered only in the fall term — all anthropology majors should plan to take this course in the fall term of their senior year. Prerequisites: ANTH 102 (formerly SOAN 102) with a grade of C or higher, ANTH 103 (formerly SOAN 103) with a grade of C or higher, ANTH 211 (formerly SOAN 211) or approved equivalent, and ANTH 350, or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 452.)
495 Independent Study for Honors and High Honors
This independent study is for candidates for honors and high honors in anthropology. Enrollment is limited to seniors with a GPA of 3.50 or higher in all departmental courses and an overall GPA of 3.30 or higher. This course is offered in the spring semester only. Prerequisite: ANTH 452.
291, 391, 491 Independent Study
Students obtaining permission from the department may undertake individual or group studies of advanced or specialized topics in anthropology.
Course Offerings: Sociology
SOCI courses count toward the Social Relations, Institutions, and Agents area of inquiry requirement, unless otherwise noted.
Research Intensive courses are noted as (RI).
Community Based courses are noted as (CB).
101 Introduction to Sociology
This course is an introduction to sociology, with special emphasis on American society, using a historical and comparative focus. It introduces students to some of the basic concepts and methods used by sociologists. The course considers a selection of topics: racial inequality, class reproduction, gender roles, work and society, social movements, bureaucracy, and crime and deviance. Enrollment is limited to first-year and sophomore students. (Formerly SOAN 101.)
201 Classical Social Theory
C. Hsu, J. Hyslop, R. Levine, P. Lopes
This course examines some of the chief methodological and theoretical approaches used in the social sciences, primarily focusing on Marx, Durkheim, and Weber. In addition to original texts, works of anthropology and sociology are used to integrate the classics with a contemporary focus. First-year students are not admitted. Prerequisite: SOCI 101 (formerly SOAN 101) or ANTH 102 (formerly SOAN 102) with a grade of C or higher or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 204, Approaches to Social Analysis.)
212 Power, Racism, and Privilege
The purpose of this course is to familiarize students with theoretical and historical perspectives of racial inequality and other ethnic and minority group relationships. The course primarily examines the relationship between racism and the socio-economic and political development of the United States. Course readings, lectures, and discussions are intended to aid students in gaining a clear understanding of the role race and ethnicity have played in shaping contemporary US society as well as the larger social world we live in and to therefore contribute to each student’s self-understanding and to a better understanding of others whose racial-cultural backgrounds are different. Senior students are generally not admitted, except with permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 212.)
213 Coming of Age in an Unequal World
This course exposes students to sociological frameworks to critically investigate how power, privilege, and oppression influence the coming of age experiences of young people from diverse backgrounds. Students will grapple with the causes and consequences of inequality in early life and consider how these social processes influence young adult decisions, such as whether and where to go to college, what career to choose, and whether and when to form a family. The course also exposes students to intergroup dialogue activities that promote understanding, communication, and alliance building across differences. These activities ask students to draw upon course materials and personal experiences to reflect on how their positionality is constructed and reproduced within structures of power and privilege.
216 Sociology of War
In the modern world, war has usually been thought of as a clash between rival states. But, especially since the Second World War, much armed conflict has taken place between states and other kinds of entities — national liberation movements, criminal syndicates, warlords, terrorist groups. In an extreme case such as Somalia, states have totally disintegrated. This course asks what the consequences of this change are for our sociological understanding of the nature of warfare. It examines case studies of armed conflict in the present and recent past — Afghanistan, Kashmir, warlordism in West Africa, Northern Ireland, armed leftist movements in Western Europe during the 1970s; and in late colonial period and its aftermath, the Mau-Mau Rebellion, the Algerian war of independence, the Rhodesian War. A particular focus is on treating war as a cultural phenomenon, and to ask questions about the self-understandings of formal and informal military organizations and their consequences. Senior students are generally not admitted, except with permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 216.)
220 Gender, Sexuality, and Society
This interdisciplinary course explores gender and sexuality as primary markers of social inequality in our society and among the most salient organizing agents of our everyday lives. Course readings span several disciplines, including literature, history, philosophy, sociology, and psychology. Students analyze gender and sexuality using comparative historical and sociological perspectives. Subthemes of the course include culture, socialization, body and performance, intersectionality, essentialism, privilege, resistance, and social change. Senior students are generally not admitted, except with permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 220.)
222 Media and Modern Society
This course is a general introduction to concepts, theories, and issues related to mass media and society. Over the last 200 years tremendous changes have revolutionized the nature of mass communication in modern societies. This course is designed to provide a basic understanding of the nature of mass media and its social significance. It addresses the impact of different types of communication from information exchange, to news, to entertainment, to advertising. Students are introduced to a wide range of media including print, telegraphy, film, recorded sound, radio, television, and digital media. This course is about analyzing how media texts are produced; why some messages enter mass media channels and others do not; how these messages affect audiences and how audiences receive them; and the general impact of mass media on contemporary society, culture, and politics. This course is open to sophomores and first-year students only. (Formerly SOAN 222.)
This course is an introduction to international migration, with a focus on post-World War II migration. Geographically, the course focuses on immigration to the United States from Latin America, where the bulk of post-1965 immigrants come from. The course begins by introducing students to basic concepts and approaches related to migration studies. It further examines different stages in the migration process, including the processes of migration, the adaption/incorporation of immigrants in U.S. society, and the future “assimilation” of their children. Senior students are generally not admitted, except with permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 228.)
245 Nature, Culture, and Politics
C. Henke, E. Shever
The words “nature” and “the environment” conjure up visions of wild animals and open landscapes, but are people part of nature, too? This course shows how nature and human culture are intertwined, both in terms of how we shape our environment as well as how it shapes us. Through a series of case studies, students explore this relationship, focusing especially on the way that nature and culture are “political”: inequalities, social problems and movements, and power relations all flow from the way that we interact with our environment. The course takes a global, comparative, and historical view of this process, and includes the following special topics: the rise of environmental awareness and environmental social movements; globalization and environmental values; consumption and the environment; environmental inequalities and justice; risk, technology, and environmental politics; and public policy and the environment. Senior students are generally not admitted, except with permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 245.) This course is crosslisted as ANTH 245.
250 Sociological Research Design and Methods
J. Benson, C. Henke, J. Villarrubia
This course introduces students to both the dominant areas of inquiry in sociology and the methods that have been devised to investigate them. Emphasis in this course is on investigation. The course familiarizes students with the methods, techniques, and language of social science research. Focusing on field and survey research, the course examines the ways social scientists formulate questions, collect and analyze data, and present their findings. The course is also concerned with the epistemological underpinnings of “doing sociology.” How do sociologists define “fact” and “truth”? What are the historical and contemporary debates over these concepts? To provide students with a hands-on understanding of concepts and issues, students are expected to collect and analyze original data. The class also does computer statistical analysis of pre-existing data bases. Open to sophomores and juniors. Prerequisites: SOCI 101 (formerly SOAN 101) with a grade of C or higher or permission of the instructor. (Formerly SOAN 210, The Craft of Sociological Inquiry.)
251 Media Frame and Content Analysis
C. Henke, P. Klepeis
Mass media is a key set of institutions in modernity that shape our perceptions of the world, with important impacts on what we take to be reality. The media “frames” that structure how media is produced, conveyed, and consumed form the discourses that we use to understand mass politics and culture in our daily lives. This 0.50-credit course provides students with the methodological tools to empirically study media frames through content analysis. Content analysis takes the stuff of media, such as music lyrics, news stories, or advertisements, and systematically analyzes the content for the explicit and implicit frames that represent the issues and perspectives conveyed through media. The course provides students hands-on training in content analysis through a series of workshops on content sampling, collection, coding, and analysis that culminate in a final research project. This course meets for the first 7 weeks of the term and may be used to satisfy the 0.50-credit methods requirement for the sociology major. Prerequisites: SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) is recommended. This course is crosslisted as GEOG 251.
This course is crosslisted as GEOG 253. For course description, see “Geography: Course Offerings.”
254 Community-Based Participatory Research
This course introduces students to the principles of community-based participatory research within the context of sociology to critically examine the role of power and positionality in the construction of knowledge and difference. Students will learn a range of community-based participatory research approaches and reflect on how to form collaborative relationships that incorporate community perspectives and interests in the research process. Students will devote time outside of class to work in partnership with local community organizations to carry out a high quality research project that meets a community need. Research projects will be identified in collaboration with the Upstate Institute based on community needs and student capacity. Students will prepare a research paper and presentation to disseminate the results of the research project. Prerequisite: SOCI 250.
303 Sociology of Education (RI)
This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to current theory and research on the role of education in contemporary US society, focusing specifically on the structure, practices, content, and outcomes of schooling. Through course readings, discussions, and a semester-long research project on inequality in higher education, students learn how to use a sociological lens to critically examine education as a social institution. The course begins by examining different theoretical approaches for thinking about the function of education. Students use these approaches to consider what are schools, whom are they for, and why do individuals and society care about them. Next, the course turns to the organization and context of schooling. Here, students investigate how factors such as school climate, governance, tracking, year-around schooling, and neighborhood and family contexts shape student outcomes. Then the course turns to the question of education and inequality, and examines the factors that influence why some students seem to have better educational outcomes than others. Finally students investigate current educational reform and policy. Student research teams lead class discussions on excellence and equity in higher education drawing upon their semester-long research projects. No first-year students admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 303.)
305 Urban Sociology
Urban structures and problems are examined with an emphasis on the ways in which cities are embedded in a broader social and cultural milieu. The traditional concern of the impact of urban development on behavior is juxtaposed to an analysis of current fiscal problems and the potential for cities to grow, stagnate, or collapse. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 305.)
306 Sociology of the Family
The family is a personal, social, and political institution. In this course, students critically consider how a range of historical, cultural, economic, legal and social factors shape our notions of family. Students examine recent family demographic trends and changes in gender roles and ideologies, and in doing so, investigate how and why family forms and decisions are differentiated by social class, race-ethnicity, gender, and sexuality. In addition, students examine the implications of different family formation trends for individual and child-well-being. Finally, students draw on sociological research and perspectives to evaluate how social policies impact families, including same-sex families, poverty and welfare, work-family balance, marriage promotion and father involvement, and sex education and contraception. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 306.)
312 Social Inequality
R. Levine, J. Villarrubia
This course analyzes social structure and social stratification, emphasizing economic class, life styles, differential prestige, and inequality. The theory of social class and its measurement is discussed, and the change and stability of social class is considered. Comparative examples of stratification are examined, although the emphasis is on the American class system. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 312.)
313 Environmental Problems and Environmental Activism in the People’s Republic of China
A. Baptiste, C. Hsu
This course explores China’s complex environmental issues, their historical roots, and social implications. It also examines the rise of environmental social activism in China. The course will utilize pedagogical methods from InterGroup Relations (IGR) to provide students with the intellectual tools to analyze issues of power, privilege, and identity and by extension, their own position in the world in relation to these environmental issues. This course is linked to an extended study to China. Students will travel to the People’s Republic of China, where they will examine sites of environmental problems, but also meet activists and see their work in progress. The trip will also bring to the forefront some of the issues of power, privilege, and race issues that were discussed in the course. This course is crosslisted as ASIA 313 and ENST 313.
314 Population Issues and Analysis
This course is crosslisted as GEOG 314. For course description, see “Geography: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 314.)
318 International Migration, U.S. Immigration, and Immigrants
This course is crosslisted as GEOG 318. For course description, see “Geography: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 318.)
319 Food (CB)
Food is fundamental — it sustains us and is essential for our survival — but food is more than just what we eat. Food is also a commodity with complex global markets and ecological impacts; it is highly regulated through our political processes and institutions; and it forms a key part of our culture and the social rhythms of everyday life. This course explores these many dimensions of food, focusing especially on key questions about where it comes from, how it is produced, and how it is embedded in our economic, political, and cultural institutions. Students enrolled in this course participate in a service learning internship at Common Thread Community Farm in Madison, NY. The course also involves field trips to and guest speakers from local food and farming communities. Prerequisites: (1) one of the following courses: ENST 232, SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204), or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210); (2) students must have an open morning (no other enrolled courses) on Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday, from 8 a.m. until 12 p.m., in order to accommodate the farm internship component of the course. (Formerly SOAN 319.) This course is crosslisted as ENST 319.
320 Social Deviance
This course examines the nature, causes, and consequences of deviant behavior in modern society. Key areas of inquiry include conceptualizations and definitions of deviance, the emergence and management of deviant identities, deviant careers, deviant subcultures, accounts of deviant behavior, and the social control of deviance. Specific types of deviance studied include substance use, sexual practices, non-violent crime, violent crime, mental illness, and youth subcultures. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 320.)
321 Black Communities
This course uses a social scientific approach to examine the circumstances and dynamics characterizing black communities in the contemporary United States. Key areas of inquiry include the operation of major social institutions shaping community life, social class divisions, health and housing prospects, and the ways that the intersections of racial/ethnic identity, class, and gender shape the experiences of community members. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisite: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or ALST 202 or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 321.) This course is crosslisted as ALST 321.
324 Medical Sociology
This course introduces students to the uniqueness of sociological perspectives in understanding health care, and the social factors that influence health care. The course employs several levels of analysis: social history, social interaction, work roles, organizations, organizational relationships, and social policy. The framework for this course is that of social organization. The primary objective is to show that the social organization of a society influences, to some degree, the type and distribution of disease, illness, and death found in that society. The social organization of a society also influences, to a significant degree, how the system of medical care responds. The values and assumptions underlying the medical definition of health are not necessarily the same as those underlying the sociological definition of health. A focus of the course is to examine race, class, and gender issues that influence the delivery of healthcare in this country. Attention is given to such topics as social epidemiology, the social demography of health, social stress, and illness behavior. The course also reviews the sick role, doctor-patient interaction, medical health professionals, hospitals and other health care agencies, and the healthcare delivery system in the United States and other countries. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 324.)
326 Nations and Nationalism
In this course, students learn major theories of nationalism and examine these theories in the light of empirical cases, including current conflicts in Afghanistan, Tibet, India, and the Middle East. Students learn about the rise of the nation-state and nationalism, examining how the nation-state has come to be the dominant form of political organization. Students investigate the relationship between nationalism and other social constructions of identity, such as language, religion, ethnicity, and gender. For example, this course examines how the construction of nationalism in the United States shapes the culture war debates, while a different version of nationalism in China affects its economic policies. The course also examines contemporary phenomenon undermining nationalism: transnationalism, mutinationalism, and globalization. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 326.)
This course introduces students to the field of criminology. Key areas of inquiry include the concept(s) of crime, the dilemmas modern criminologists encounter in conducting research, and the major theoretical perspectives on crime and criminal behavior. Emphasis is placed on sociological determinants of criminal behavior, and the functioning of the US criminal justice system. No first-year students admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 328.)
330 Race and Crime
This course uses a social scientific approach to examine the relationship between race and crime in the contemporary United States, with a particular emphasis on the African American experience. Key areas of inquiry include the nature of mass incarceration, urban crime, the politics of the new law and order regime, the relationship between punitiveness and prejudice, racial profiling, the community-level impacts of mass incarceration, the legitimacy crisis facing the criminal justice system, media depictions of race and crime, and racial stereotyping. No first-year students admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or ALST 202, or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 330.) This course is crosslisted as ALST 330.
332 Business and Society
This course analyzes the impact of corporations on US society in the context of changing technologies, the growing importance of service industries, and the need to remain competitive in the international economy. This course explores the effects of corporate strategies and decisions on industrial structure, employment, and social welfare. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 332.)
333 Sociology of the Life Course (CB)
J. Benson, M. Loe
This course takes the human life span as the primary unit of analysis. Individuals live their lives within contexts supplied by an existing social framework. It is this framework that orders transitions between the various stages of life, constructs the various roles that individuals will occupy over the course of their lives, and provides the set of historical conditions, ideas, and institutions by which individuals give meaning to their existence. Human lives are characterized by both continuity and change, and each human must negotiate the path of his or her life through a web of institutional frameworks. These pre-existing frameworks through which we travel are subject to the constraints of the past but are also open to possibilities created by each new generation. Understanding this complex relationship can not only broaden our notion of what it means to be human, but take our humanity to new heights as well. In some terms students must also register for SOCI 333L, a required 0.25-credit field learning/lab component. No first-year students admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 333.)
337 Globalization and Culture
What does “globalization” mean, and what does it mean for societies and people facing the onslaught of global corporations? This course examines the phenomenon of globalization from a variety of theoretical perspectives, ranging from neo-liberal economics to cultural anthropology. It analyzes how each of these works defines the causes of globalization and its effects on traditional cultures, community relationships, economic wealth and justice, and political institutions. To put these theoretical works in perspective, interspersed with them are actual case studies of real people and real communities, ranging from Costa Rican farmers to Thai factory workers, interacting with the forces of globalization. These case studies allow students to test the abstract analyses and see which theories fit reality. No first-year students admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 337.) This course is crosslisted as ANTH 337.
340 Work and Society
This study of the organization of work in industrialized societies includes the following topics: technology and work; hierarchy and control in the workplace; women, minorities, and work; worker discontent; and the professionalization of work. Special attention is given to the topics of skill and technology, especially with regard to workplace democratization. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 340.)
344 The Sociology of Money and Markets
This course examines the social, cultural, and political underpinnings of economic constructs such as money, the market, consumption, and finance. The course explores how a sociological perspective complements and challenges traditional economic theories. The focus of the class is on the economics of everyday life — consumption, saving, and investing. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 344.)
348 American Popular Culture
Popular culture is an important site for the expression of cultural identity and cultural conflict in America. This course views popular culture as embedded in the cultural politics of American society that involves the formation of ideas, identities, pleasures, and even desires. Theoretical texts are read that place popular culture and mass media in their social, economic, and political contexts. From conflicts over high art and popular art, to leisure and social class, to race and ethnicity, to film and the spectacle, to gender and sexuality, to the post modern, this course explores the rich history of American popular culture over the last 150 years. This course is open to juniors and seniors. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or FMST 200 or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 348.)
350 The Social World of the Oceans: Ships, Sailors, Ports, Trade, and Environmental Crisis
The course seeks to examine the life of the shipping industry, seafarers, and port cities, all crucial to our social understanding of a world where most global trade still moves in ships, and where there are strong signs of renewed naval competition. The course starts by looking at the rise and fall of British maritime dominance. It then focuses on the “container revolution,” the rise of the supertanker, and the current economics of shipping. There is strong attention to the maritime labor, the cultures of sailors, and the nature of port cities. The continuing importance of naval power and resurgent piracy are examined. Finally, the course addresses the current ecological catastrophe in the oceans. Prerequisite: SOCI 101 (formerly SOAN 101).
355 Thinking Culture, Class, and Politics: Directions in Social Theory
The course charts the development of social theory since the classical social theorists, with a particular focus on how critical social thinkers have understood inequality and forms of social power. The course gives special attention to the relationship between social thought and its historical-political context, and notably its relationship to labor and anti-colonial movements and the “new social movements.” Central themes in the course include the problems of the idea of “culture”; how much an understanding of “class” can or cannot explain; and the status of notions of ideology, discourse, and materialism in contemporary social thought. Theorists who work may be covered include Gramsci, Norbert Elias, Karl Polanyi, C. Wright Mills, De Beauvoir, Fanon, Said, Bourdieu, Habermas, Stuart Hall, Anthony Giddens, and others. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 or ANTH 350, or permission of instructor.
361 Power, Politics, and Social Change
Political sociology is generally concerned with the interaction between the social structure and politics, between social processes and political processes. It considers questions such as the relationships between different political systems and social factors including economic development, social stratification, and socialization; or the relationship between the political factors of power, authority, sovereignty, and representation and the social factors of class, ethnicity, gender, and race. The approach of this course is historical and comparative. Among the topics considered are the intellectual foundations of the sociology of politics, social bases of power, politics, and social change, and the sociology of social movements. No first-year students admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 361.)
367 Sociology of Gender
Drawing on theoretical and empirical research, as well as visual media and print news reporting, this course explores gender as a primary market of social inequality in our society and a major impetus for social change. Specifically, students analyze how gendered ideologies, practices, and contexts shape social institutions such as work, family, medicine, sport, military, religion, and the beauty industry. They examine how institutions and bodies become contested sites for gender and sexual politics. The class also pays close attention to how gendered ideologies work in tandem with race, class, and sexual expectations, constraining (and sometimes enabling) bodies and lives. The course encourages students to analyze U.S. culture with a gendered lens. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisite: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or WMST 202 or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 367.)
369 Women, Health, and Medicine
This course draws on interdisciplinary research and writings to explore the ways in which the nature, distribution, meanings, and everyday life experiences associated with health, medicine, and illness are shaped by historical, cultural, political, and economic factors. Covering both micro- and macro-sociological terrains, this course utilizes a gendered lens to critically analyze the construction of gendered medical problems and doctor-patient encounters throughout history, women’s experiences in a male-dominated health care system, and social movements in response to medical injustices. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisite: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or WMST 202 or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 369.)
375 Media and Politics (RI)
This course uses a social scientific approach to examine the role that the media plays in American politics. Key areas of inquiry include the function of the media in democracy, the news-making process, campaigning through the news, political advertising, media effects, governing through the news, and infotainment/satire. No first-year students are admitted. Prerequisites: SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204) or SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210) or FMST 200 or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 375.) This course is crosslisted as FMST 375.
378 Social Theory of Everyday Life
This course is crosslisted as ANTH 378. For course description, see “Anthropology: Course Offerings.” (Formerly SOAN 378.)
453 Senior Seminar in Sociology
In this capstone seminar for the sociology major, students conduct original sociological research on the topics of their choice. They design research projects grounded in sociological theory, review relevant literature on the topics, and collect and analyze data to find their own results. Each student’s project results in a significant thesis paper, through which students learn the process of doing sociological research and writing a sociological article. Seminars focus on a variety of broad topical areas in sociology, depending on the instructor. Note: This seminar is normally offered only in the fall term — all sociology majors should plan to take this course in the fall term of their senior year. Prerequisites: SOCI 101 (formerly SOAN 101) with a grade of C or higher, SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204), SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210), and one half-credit methods course (SOCI 251–SOCI 270) or permission of instructor. (Formerly SOAN 453.)
494 Honors and High Honors Seminar
Enrollment is limited to seniors with a GPA of 3.50 or higher in all departmental courses, and an overall GPA of 3.30 or higher. This course is offered in the fall semester only and serves as a bridge to the Honors Thesis Workshop, offered during the spring term. Students develop a proposal and collect initial data for a substantive, research-based thesis project, to be completed in SOCI 495. Prerequisites: SOCI 101 (formerly SOAN 101) with a grade of C or higher, SOCI 201 (formerly SOAN 204), SOCI 250 (formerly SOAN 210), and one half-credit methods course (SOCI 251–SOCI 270) or permission of instructor.
495 Honors and High Honors Thesis Workshop
Enrollment is limited to seniors who have completed SOCI 494. With the guidance of their instructor from SOCI 494 and a topical adviser from among the continuing faculty in sociology, students work to complete the projects begun in SOCI 494. This course is only offered in the spring term. Prerequisites: SOCI 494.
291, 391, 491 Independent Study
Students obtaining permission from the department may undertake individual or group studies of advanced or specialized topics in sociology.