globe
  1. SA 2601: ETHNICITY, CULTURE AND IDENTITY

    Lecture LECT266,       9-11 am

    Seminar LECT217,      11 am-12 pm

    **A note on reading**

    Most lectures will be followed by seminars in which students will have a chance to discuss and debate the topics that have just been covered. To participate fully in these sessions, you MUST cover *in advance* the essential readings for each week and a few of the recommended readings or other material that you've found yourself. Each topic comes with a list of questions to get you going. Be ready to share your thoughts during the seminar.

     

  2. Recommended readings for the course 4 items
    1. Imagined communities: reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism - Benedict R. O'G. Anderson 2006

      Book Essential reading

    2. Culture: the anthropologists' account - Adam Kuper c1999

      Book Recommended reading

  3. Key ethnographies for the course 2 items
    Both of these deal with the key themes of this course through rich ethnographic research. Reading through these carefully will equip you with a good stock of ethnographic examples, and will also give you a sense of how anthropologists construct their arguments and analyses.
    1. Contesting culture: discourses of identity in multi-ethnic London

      Chapter Essential reading Read "Culture and community as terms of cultural contestation"

    2. Purity and exile: violence, memory, and national cosmology among Hutu refugees in Tanzania

      Chapter Recommended reading Read chapter 3 .pp 105-152 The Uses of History in the Refugee Camp: Living the Present in Historical Terms

  4. Week 1: Introduction (25 Sept 2018) 11 items
    This course examines how and why ethnicity, culture and identity matter so intensely, both in this country and around the world. Our aim is to understand the fundamental dynamics shaping them by drawing on theories and methods from anthropology. This session will provide an introduction to a number of key themes and concerns in the anthropology of ethnicity, culture and identity, a discussion of key terms and concepts as well as an overview of requirements of the course: your fieldwork assignment, what you can expect from the classes, and what you’ll be expected to contribute to them. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions about the course and its structure.
    1. Week 2: Ethnicity: Anthropological approaches, contemporary dilemmas (2 Oct 2018) 11 items
      Ethnicity is everywhere. Open a newspaper and you’ll probably find headlines about ‘ethnic cleansing’, ‘ethnic diversity’, and ‘ethnic politics’. But, what are our presuppositions about ethnicity? What exactly is ethnicity – a genealogical trait, a set of cultural characteristics, or even just a sense of difference? Are we born with an ethnicity, or does it only emerge in specific social, political and economic situations? Can we have different ethnicities, and can ethnicity change? Drawing on theories and methods from anthropology, in this session, we’ll look at how anthropologists have tackled this slippery topic over the last half-century in order to understand the fundamental dynamics shaping it. We’ll also consider how ‘ethnicity’ relates to ‘culture’, ‘nationalism’ and other themes which are covered in this course. Questions to consider and discuss - Is ethnicity a biological or a performative trait? - How is this acted out, “performed”? How is ethnicity/ethnic identity constituted? - Can we have ethnicity without groups?
      1. Ethnic groups and boundaries: the social organization of culture difference : results of a symposium held at the University of Bergen, 23rd to 26th February 1967 - Fredrik Barth 1998

        Book Essential reading Pathan Identity and its Maintenance. You can now find this PDF on BBL

      2. Contesting culture: discourses of identity in multi-ethnic London - Gerd Baumann 1996

        Book Recommended reading Chapters 2 and 3

      3. Ethnicity: anthropological constructions - Marcus Banks 1996 (electronic resource)

        Book Recommended reading

      4. The Theory of Ethnos and Ethnic Processes in Soviet Social Sciences - Julian Bromley and Viktor Kozlov 1989

        Article Recommended reading

      5. The anthropology of ethnicity: beyond "Ethnic groups and boundaries" - Hans Vermeulen, Cora Govers 1994

        Book Other reading

      6. Ethnicity, Race, and Nationalism - Rogers Brubaker 2009

        Article Recommended reading

  5. Week 3: Nations and nationalism (9 October 2018) 12 items
    In this session, we look at the ‘kindred concept’ (Eriksen) to ethnicity: nationalism. Nations are the main building blocks of the international world order today: wars are fought over them, and people are willing to kill and die for them. And yet, two hundred years ago, they didn’t exist as such. How did they come about? And what makes a nation a nation? This lecture will run through some important social scientific approaches to the study of nations and nationalism, and consider how it relates to ‘ethnicity’, ‘culture’ and other topics in this course. Questions to consider and discuss: - Do all nations have an ethnic ‘core’? - Are there ancient and new nations? -How is the nation imagined or constructed? - How do people come to think of themselves as part of a nation? Should we talk about nationalism or nationalismS? - How do nations become plausible and persuasive? Or- Are we about to see the end of the nation-state?
    1. Imagined communities: reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism - Benedict R. O'G. Anderson 2006

      Book Essential reading Read "Cultural roots"

    2. Imagined communities: reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism - Benedict R. O'G. Anderson 2006

      Book Other reading Chapters 2 and 3

    3. Ethnicity: anthropological constructions - Marcus Banks 1996

      Book Recommended reading Read "Ethnicity and nationalism"

    4. Banal nationalism - Michael Billig 1995

      Book Recommended reading

    5. Ethnicity and nationalism: anthropological perspectives - Thomas Hylland Eriksen 2010

      Book Recommended reading Read "Nationalism"

    6. Nations and nationalism - Ernest Gellner 2006

      Book Recommended reading

    7. Flexible citizenship: the cultural logics of transnationality - Aihwa Ong 1999

      Book Recommended reading

  6. Week 4: Identity and culture (16 October 2018) 11 items
    ‘‘Identity’ is one of the buzz words of our times. In this session we examine how and why ‘identity’ matters so intensely in today’s world. Questions to consider are: - What are our presuppositions about identity? - What defines it? - Who ascribes it to whom and why? - How is it acted out? - Can ‘identity’ be reconceptualised as a process of ‘identification’? We’ll look at the concepts and practices of ‘identity’ as bases of social and political belonging and differentiation, and consider specifically how it relates to ‘culture’. Once a basic unit of anthropological analysis, ‘culture’ has gone viral too (so to speak), becoming a category, concept and political resource that individuals and groups of any sort want, claim to posses and/or are expected to. How do current anthropological models of ‘culture’ differ from those in the ‘real’ world? Is ‘culture’ as a concept too problematic to be useful in anthropology?
    1. Beyond "Identity" - Rogers Brubaker, Frederick Cooper 2000

      Article Essential reading

    2. The cultural geography reader - Tim Oakes, Patricia Lynn Price 2008 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading Read Chapters: 'The concept(s) of culture' William Sewell 'Writing againts cutlure' Lila Abu-Lughod

    3. Looking like a culture - Eric Hirsch 11/2007

      Article Recommended reading

    4. Culture: the anthropologists' account - Adam Kuper c1999

      Book Recommended reading

    5. Questions of cultural identity - Stuart Hall, Paul Du Gay 1996 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading Hall, S. Who needs identity?

    6. On the geopolitics of identity - A. Chun 01/09/2009

      Article Recommended reading

  7. Week 5: Engendering Identities (23 October 2018) 15 items
    Having looked at three major theoretical concerns in the anthropology of identity and social organization, we now turn to how they are entangled with specific topics. This week’s topic is gender. Once considered little more than an offshoot of biology (sex), gender is now treated by anthropologists as constructed, contingent and often highly contestable. Focusing on the body and on language, the lecture will consider how gendered identities are constituted and how they are performed, reproduced and challenged by individuals. Questions to consider: - How is gender assigned to individuals? - To what extent is gender determined by biology? - How meaningful are bodily differences and what gives them meaning? - Are all identities gendered? - How do individuals reproduce or challenge gendered structures? What is the place of language in expressing and/or constructing gender? What is the relationship between gender ideology and gendered patterns of language use?
    1. In this week's additional seminar we will discuss basic fieldwork methods and concerns in preparation for UG assignment in Reading Week.

    2. The seed and the soil: gender and cosmology in Turkish village society

      Chapter Essential reading Read Chapter One, pp 25-98, The body of knowledge

    3. The handbook of language, gender, and sexuality 2014 (electronic resource)

      Book Essential reading Philips, S. 2008, The Power of Gender Ideologies in Discourse.

    4. The nation and its fragments: colonial and postcolonial histories - Partha Chatterjee c1993

      Book Recommended reading Particularly Chapter 3.

    5. Language and gender: a reader - Jennifer Coates, Pia Pichler 2011

      Book Recommended reading chapter by Cameron, D. 1998. Performing Gender Identity: Young Men’s Talk and the Construction of Heterosexual Masculinity

    6. The handbook of language, gender, and sexuality 2014 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading Pauwels, A. 2008, Linguistic Sexism and Feminist Linguistic Activism

    7. The handbook of language, gender, and sexuality 2014 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading Besnier, N, 2008. Crossing Genders, Mixing Languages: The Linguistic, Construction of Transgenderism in Tonga

  8. Week 6: Religion and identity (30 October 2018) 15 items
    In this lecture, we look at another major theme in anthropological studies of ethnicity, culture and identity: we explore the place of religion in the making – and unmaking – of ethnic, national and other identities. Rather than fading away as a backward, primitive relic of pre-modern society – as some observers once predicted it would – religion remains central to the contemporary world. But what exactly does religion consist of? It is primarily a set of beliefs and practices, an institutional phenomenon, or a form of identity? And can it be bracketed off from politics, economics and socio-cultural factors? Questions to consider and discuss: - What do we understand by ‘religion’? - How does religion contribute to the making or unmaking of identities? - What is the place of religion in the discourses and practices of the nation? - How is religion shaped by political, economic and socio-cultural circumstances? - Can religion exist beyond groups?
    1. In this week's additional seminar, we will discuss how to turn UG fieldwork experiences into an essay.

    2. Conversion to Christianity: historical and anthropological perspectives on a great transformation - Charles Keyes

      Chapter Recommended reading Read "Why the Thai are not Christians: Buddhist and Christian Conversion in Thailand "

    3. Postsocialism: ideals, ideologies and practices in Eurasia - Robert M Hayden

      Chapter Recommended reading Read Chapter 8, pp 159-179, Intolerant sovereignties and ‘multi-multi’ protectorates: competition over religious sites and (in)tolerance in the Balkans.

    4. Religious nationalism: Hindus and Muslims in India - Peter van der Veer 1994

      Book Other reading

    5. Religious division and social conflict: the emergence of Hindu nationalism in rural India - Peggy Froerer c2007

      Book Recommended reading

    6. Fundamentalism and globalism - David Lehmann 1998

      Article Other reading

    7. Syncretism/anti-syncretism: the politics of religious synthesis - Charles Stewart, Rosalind Shaw 1994

      Book Other reading Chapter: Stewart, Charles.1994. 'Syncretism as a dimension of nationalist discourse in modern Greece'

  9. Week 7: READING WEEK (5 Nov 2018) 13 items
    FOR UG STUDENTS ONLY: Fieldwork assignment & essay on the theme: What does it mean to be British? This is a selection of potentially useful reading; do read independently and use literature that's relevant to your particular fieldwork project!
    1. The art of being Black: the creation of Black British youth identities - Claire E. Alexander 1996 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading

    2. Culture, identity and politics: ethnic minorities in Britain - T. O. Ranger, Yunas Samad, Ossie Stuart c1996

      Book Recommended reading

    3. Symbolising boundaries: identity and diversity in British cultures - Anthony P. Cohen c1986

      Book Recommended reading

    4. Watching the English: the hidden rules of English behaviour - Kate Fox 2005

      Book Recommended reading

    5. Perceptions of Britishness - Jessica Jacobson 07/1997

      Article Recommended reading

    6. Through different eyes : the cultural identity of young Chinese people in Britain - David Parker 1995

      Book Recommended reading

    7. British subjects: an anthropology of Britain - Nigel Rapport 2002 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading

    8. Visibly Muslim: fashion, politics, faith - Emma Tarlo 2010

      Book Recommended reading

    9. Between two cultures: migrants and minorities in Britain - James L. Watson 1977

      Book Recommended reading

    10. City of Details: Interpreting the Personality of London - Adam Reed 03/2002

      Article Recommended reading FOR UG ONLY

  10. Week 8: Language and Identity: Language Ideologies (13 November 2018) 15 items
    In this session we examine another main identity marker: language; we explore how it is used to demarcate identity and how identity is then manifested through language. We will look at the processes of linguistic nationalism, as well as linguistic marginalization and racialisation. Questions to consider are: - What role does language play in the formation of personal identity?- How do groups use language to express both their identity and their distinctiveness? - What is the place of language in the construction of national identity?- How is language deployed in the circulation of nationalist ideologies? Conceptions of language are however not ‘neutral’. In this session we therefore look at the ways in which ideas about language have been shaped by historical and political conditions. Questions to discuss are: - How are language ideologies produced, reproduced and further circulated?- How does language use reflect and reinforce ideologies in society?
    1. Language ideology - Kathryn A. Woolard, Bambi B. Schieffelin 1994

      Article Essential reading

    2. Language, race, and white public space - Jane H. Hill 1998

      Article Essential reading

    3. Language and symbolic power - Pierre Bourdieu, John B. Thompson 1991

      Book Recommended reading

    4. A companion to linguistic anthropology - Alessandro Duranti 2004 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading Bucholtz, M. and Hall, K. (2004) ‘Language and identity’

    5. Language ideological debates - Jan Blommaert 1999 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading

    6. Verbal hygiene - Deborah Cameron 1995

      Book Recommended reading

    7. Language ideologies: practice and theory - Bambi B. Schieffelin, Kathryn Ann Woolard, Paul V. Kroskrity 1998 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading Read Hill, J. (1998) “Today There Is No Respect”: Nostalgia, “Respect,” and Oppositional Discourse in Mexicano (Nahuatl) Language Ideology’

    8. 'We are not French!': language, culture and identity in Brittany - Maryon McDonald 1989

      Book Recommended reading

    9. Ideologies in action: language politics on Corsica - Alexandra M. Jaffe 1999 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading

  11. Week 9: Performance, Representation and Commodification (20 November 2018) 11 items
    Expanding on some of the themes explored in Lecture 4, this session looks at how ethnic, cultural and other identities are constituted through performance, representation and commodification. In these moments, the presence and composition of the audience is of paramount importance, for it is in the interaction between them and the ‘performers’ that identities are made real. We will explore these issues in the context of tourism, where the tension between the tourists’ search for the ‘authentic’ and the suspicion it is instead ‘invented’ may arise. But what should anthropologists make of such events? Are they inherently inauthentic fabrications or corruptions of ‘real’ culture, or are there other ways of looking at them? Questions to consider and discuss: - What are the benefits and dangers of ‘reifying’ or ‘objectifying’ a culture? - Are performances merely fabrications or simplifications of the ‘real’ stuff? - What role do audiences play? - Is representation always political? Is commodification always commercial?
    1. On sociocultural discontinuity: nationalism and cultural objectification in Quebec [and Comments and Reply] - Richard Handler, Bernard Arcand, Ronald Cohen, Bernard Delfendahl, Dean MacCannell, Kent Maynard, Lise Pilon-Lê and M. Estellie Smith 1984

      Article Recommended reading

    2. The invention of tradition - E. J. Hobsbawm, T. O. Ranger 1983

      Book Essential reading

    3. Revitalizing European rituals - Jeremy Boissevain, European Association of Social Anthropologists 1992

      Book Other reading Read Cowan, J. K. 1992 ‘Japanese Ladies and Mexican Hats: Contested Symbols and the Politics of Tradition in a Northern Greek Carnival Celebration’

    4. Revitalizing European rituals - Jeremy Boissevain, European Association of Social Anthropologists 1992

      Book Other reading Odermatt, P. (1996) ‘A case of neglect? The Politics of (Re) presentation: a Sardinian Case’

    5. Coping with tourists: European reactions to mass tourism - Jeremy Boissevain c1996

      Book Other reading Introduction

  12. Week 10: Food, drink and ethnicity (27 November 2018) 14 items
    In this lecture we will explore how people create and maintain identity through hospitality and food. More generally, we will explore food and its relation to ideas about and expressions of ethnicity. What role does food play in shaping group identity? What influences how people maintain or alter their traditional food practices as a result of migration, advertising, or social aspirations? We will consider how food is invoked to maintain cultural stereotypes and hierarchies and how the foods of ‘others’ get commodified.
    1. Deciphering a meal - Mary Douglas 1972

      Article Essential reading Douglas, Mary. Deciphering a Meal

    2. The taste culture reader: experiencing food and drink - Carolyn Korsmeyer 2005

      Book Recommended reading Bourdieu, Pierre. Taste of Luxury, Taste of Necessity

    3. Food and agrarian orders in the world-economy - Philip McMichael 1995 (electronic resource)

      Book Recommended reading Mintz, Sidney. Food and Its Relationship to Concepts of Power.

    4. Remembrance of repasts: an anthropology of food and memory - David E. Sutton 2006

      Book Recommended reading Introduction: Sensory Memory and the Construction of “Worlds” and Chapter 3.

    5. The Italian way: food & social life - Douglas A. Harper, Patrizia Faccioli c2009 (electronic resource)

      Book Other reading

    6. Journal of modern Greek studies

      Journal Other reading Yakoumaki, V, 2006, “Local,” “Ethnic,” and “Rural” Food: On the Emergence of “Cultural Diversity” in Post-EU-Accession Greece,

    7. Food, health and identity - Patricia Caplan 1997

      Book Recommended reading Allison, J. 1997, How British is British Food?

    8. Ethnic and regional foodways in the United States: the performance of group identity - Linda Keller Brown, Kay Mussell c1984

      Book Other reading Kalčik, S., 1984, Ethnic foodways in America: symbol and the performance of identity

    9. The Anthropology of Food and Eating - Sidney W. Mintz and Christine M. Du Bois 2002

      Article Recommended reading

    10. gastro-politics in Hindu South Asia - ARJUN APPADURAI 08/1981

      Article Recommended reading

  13. Week 11: Course review (4 Dec 2018) 0 items
    Course review. Getting ready for the in-class test (UG)
  14. Week 12: In-class test (date TBC) 0 items
    UG ONLY: 2 questions, 2 hours
All rights reserved ©