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Course Details

Spring 2016-2017
* ANT 347 (LA)   No Audit

Anthropology of Media

Jeffrey D. Himpele

This course introduces the media as an arena for anthropology by exploring how media texts and technologies are embedded in social forces and cultural values. We will reveal the assumptions about reality that frame representations of cultural difference and social inequality in documentary films, track the global circulation of mass media, and examine how indigenous societies have taken up media-making as a means of cultural production and politics. By studying media from anthropology's comparative and ethnographic perspectives, students will learn to identify and describe the diverse and potent relationships between media and social life.

Sample reading list:
F. Ginsburg, L. Abu-Lughod and B. Larkin, eds., Media Worlds: Anthropology on New Terrain
C. Lutz and J. Collins, Reading National Geographic
C. Russell, Experimental Ethnography: Work of Film in the Age of Video
J. Sterne, The Audible Past: Cultural Origins of Sound Reproduction
Reading packet,
See instructor for complete list

Reading/Writing assignments:
Approx. 100-150 pages reading per week; brief written notes on weekly work.

Paper in Lieu of Mid Term - 20%
Paper in lieu of Final - 30%
Class/Precept Participation - 30%
Other (See Instructor) - 20%

Other Requirements:
Multimedia Student Project Required

Other information:
Other coursework includes hands-on media projects in which students will dive deeply into media texts using video editing and data visualization software. Students will also create alternative film versions to reveal the concrete dilemmas of representation and to experiment with the anthropological concepts that emerge during the course. Visualization and mapping software designed for non-specialists will be used.

Schedule/Classroom assignment:

Class numberSectionTimeDaysRoomEnrollmentStatus
42103 C01 01:30:00 pm - 04:20:00 pm M   Aaron Burr Hall   216   Enrolled:6 Limit:25