1. Difference, Inequality, and Social Justice
This concentration focuses on the cultural, economic, political and historical production of social categories and identities, such as age, race, class, gender, sexuality, and disability. Courses emphasize the performativity of identities: the ways individuals both become social subjects and exert their agency through embodied processes of identity-making. The concentration connects social identities to histories of colonialism, slavery, commodity capitalism, immigration, state formation, and religion across the globe. Centering on queer, antiracist, feminist, and materialist approaches, this concentration highlights the links between the local, transnational, and historical construction of social categories and the ways identities create social belonging, with attendant potentials for the (re)entrenchment of social hierarchy as well as political empowerment. Studies of social movements and radical intellectual traditions are part of this concentration.
Sample courses: Key Issues in Black Feminism; Transnational Sexualities; Youth Cultures; Nationalism and the Politics of Gender and Sexuality; Queer/Anthropology
2. Local Distinctions, Global Connections
This concentration focuses on the histories and contemporary realities of world- and space-making projects of colonialism, development, neoliberalism, globalization, and transnational capitalism. Courses in this concentration explore the unequal power relations that structure encounters between localities: how global flows make and remake nations and states; boundaries and borderlands; and cities, towns, and villages. The concentration also explores the dynamic interplay between cultural difference and global interconnection -- how subjectivities, modes of belonging, and cultural and political practices and struggles are spatialized and altered in the context of ongoing processes of capitalism and colonialism. Courses in this concentration pay careful attention to cultural particularities and peculiarities while simultaneously exploring cross-regional interconnections and overlaps, including world histories of capitalist expansion and colonial, postcolonial, and neocolonial dynamics.
Sample courses: Anthropology of Cities; Postquake Haiti; Critical Perspectives on the State; Anthropology of Development; Global Indigeneities
3. Producing, Consuming, and Performing Culture
This concentration explores the interplay among anthropological notions of culture as "way of life" and humanist notions of culture as aesthetic and intellectual productions. Drawing from anthropology, cultural studies, the sociology of taste, and performance theory, it interrogates "low" or "popular" and "high" cultural forms, and the ways in which cultural hierarchies are produced, maintained, and contested; it considers both the aesthetics of everyday cultural practices and the broader cultural implications of artistic works. Courses in this concentration address such topics as: the development of modern media and culture industries and their relationship to autonomous artistic production; the use of cultural commodities in the formation of social identities; cultural performances and/as ethnographic representation; the performativity of cultures and the ways in which social or religious ritual, popular culture or media can both reinforce as well as challenge social belonging and dominant norms capitalist cultures. Students study video, film, and other mediated approaches to performance and cultural production, including ethnographic writing and museum studies.
Sample courses: Between Journalism and Anthropology; Television: The Domestic Medium; Radio Production and the Politics of Independent Media
4. Self-designed Concentration
(designed in consultation with major advisor)