University of Mississippi

Anthropology Courses

101. INTRODUCTION TO ANTHROPOLOGY. Anthropology is the holistic study of human life throughout time and across the world. This course focuses on the cultural characteristics of human groups that are examined through ethnology, linguistic anthropology, and related subfields. Pre-requisites: Successful completion of DS 097, if required. (3).

103. TOPICS IN ANTHROPOLOGY. Selected topics in anthropology. Content varies. (May be repeated for credit). Pre-requisites: Successful completion of DS 097, if required. (3).

302. ANTHROPOLOGICAL FILMS. This course examines the use of films in anthropology. Pre-requisites: May not book until successfully completing DS097. (3).

303. CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY. In this course, students will examine the fundamental principles, concepts, and methods used in cultural anthropology and ethnographic work. (3).

304. BIOLOGICAL ANTHROPOLOGY. This course draws on data from studies of primate behavior, human paleontology, and population genetics in order to explore the course of human evolution and the nature of biological variation in modern humans. (3).

305. ARCHAEOLOGY. Archaeology is the subfield of anthropology that studies people through the recovery and analysis of their material and physical remains. This course outlines the history of archaeology, its methods, and contributions to understanding humankind. (3).

306. ARCHAEOLOGY OF THE ANCIENT CELTS. This course introduces students to the archaeological and anthropological study of ancient Celtic populations living in Central and Western Europe from 1000 B.C. to A.D. 500 and examines their cultural impact on the western world. (3).

308. ARCHAEOLOGY OF DEATH AND BURIAL. Using both ethnographic and archaeological sources, this course focuses on the way in which archaeological data from mortuary practices can be used to answer questions about ancient social organizations. (3).

309. INDIANS OF MISSISSIPPI AND THE SOUTH. Review of the archaeological and ethnographical prehistory of such groups as the Choctaw, Chickasaw, and Natchez. (3).

310. PEOPLES OF THE PACIFIC. In this course, students will engage in a comparative study of the island cultures of Polynesia, Melanesia, Micronesia, and Australia at the time of European contact. (3).

311. TOPICS IN ANTHROPOLOGY. Selected topics in anthropology. The content will vary. May be repeated once for credit. (3).

312. MUSLIMS IN THE WEST. This course explores the diversity of Muslims and Islam in Europe and the United States from the holistic and comparative perspective of cultural anthropology. Students will integrate the religious, socio-economic, political, as well as the cultural and daily aspects of life to understand different ways of being Muslim in multicultural Western societies. (3).

313. INTRODUCTION TO LINGUISTIC SCIENCE. The study of human language. (3).

314. ISLAM AND GLOBAL POLITICS. This course is an anthropological exploration oh how Muslims and Muslim societies respond to democracy, civil society, and globalization. (3).

315. THE AFRICAN DIASPORA. This course is an introduction to several of the most important methods to the study of African Diaspora experiences, including cultural, archaeological, biological, and linguistic approaches. Topics include slavery and colonialism, black revolt in the modern world, black nationalism, religious and ritual forms, foodways, music, genetics and genealogies, speech genres, and material culture.

316. RISE AND FALL OF THE MISSISSIPPIAN WORLD. This course reconstructs the rise and fall of the pre-Columbian Mississippian world of the Southeastern Indians (900 CE-1700 CE) through an examination of the variety of polities that existed, the structures of daily life, the political and ideological system, the connections that tied the various polities into a single, interactive world, and the fall of this world with European contact.

317. INDIANS ON THE SOUTHERN FRONTIER. Examines the place of Native Americans in the South during the frontier era (A.D. 1500-1840), focusing on the changes in Native American life once they became incorporated into the larger world as a result of European colonization. (3).

319. ENVIRONMENTAL HISTORY OF THE SOUTH. Explores the changes in the Southern environment from the prehistoric era to the modern era, focusing on issues of human/environment interaction, changing patterns of land use, and the subsequent changes in the environment. (3).

320. ARCHAEZOOLOGY: ANIMAL USE IN HISTORY. This course uses analysis of animal bones from archaeological sites to explore how people used animals for food, in religion, and as work animals and companions in the past. An equal emphasis is placed on laboratory methods and anthropological theory.

323. INDIANS OF NORTH AMERICA. Representative cultures and culture areas of North America; their relationships and differences. (3).

324. NORTH AMERICAN ARCHAEOLOGY. This course will provide students with an overview of prehistoric cultures of North America as understood through anthropological archaeology.

325. INDIANS OF MIDDLE AMERICA. This course will survey the contemporary Native American populations of Mexico and northern Central America with an emphasis on the Maya, Mixtec and Nahuatl peoples. (3).

326. ARCHAEOLOGY OF MAYA CIVILIZATION. The origins and prehistory of Maya society; classic Maya civilization, its art, writing, and social organization.(3)

327. INDIANS OF SOUTH AMERICA. Representative cultures and culture areas of South America; their relationships and differences; the Inca and other ancient civilizations of the Andes. (3).

328. CULTURE & SOCIETY IN LATIN AMERICA. This course examines contemporary Latin American cultures and societies from an ethnological perspective, attending to transformations in civil society, governance, social movements, labor conditions, and indigeneity spurred by globalization.

330. ENVIRONMENTAL ANTHROPOLOGY. The course introduces students to the relationship between humans and the natural world. Students will look at the range of human production strategies such as hunting and gathering or engagement in capitalist economics and how these strategies function in the face of contemporary environmental and economic challenges. The course also pays special attention to some of the varied meanings of the natural world. (3).

331. AMERICAN INDIANS AND THE NATURAL WORLD. This course examines the relationship between American Indians and the natural world, including how this relationship changed over time as Native peoples responded to environmental changes and other historical forces. (3).

332. EARLY MEDIEVAL ART AND ARCHAEOLOGY. Art and architecture of the fourth through early 12th centuries in Eastern and Western Europe. Art of so-called barbarian groups from Hungary to England and Scandinavia, and Christian art of the Carolingian and Ottoman Empires. (3).

334. INTRODUCTION TO FIELD WORK TECHNIQUES. Examination of the theory, practice, and tradition of documentary field research, including the use of photography, film and video, and tape recorders. Special emphasis on documentary study of the American South. (3).

335. ARCHAEOLOGICAL FIELD SESSION. Intensive training in archaeological survey and excavation techniques and analysis of archaeological materials. (6).

336. VIKING ART AND ARCHAEOLOGY. Art and archaeology of Vikings in Scandinavia and in distant lands from Russia to England and Iceland. Covers pre-Viking styles of the fifth century through late 11th century. (3).

337. ANTHROPOLOGY OF BLUES CULTURE. This course examines the blues in all its myriad social and cultural roles and contexts, using the anthropological models and approaches of the oral and musical arts, linguistics, ethnohistory, ethnography, religion and ritual analysis among others. (3).

341. FRAUDS, MYTHS, AND MYSTERIES. Did Atlantis exist? Did ancient astronauts visit the Earth and introduce advanced technology? Topics such as these are investigated, comparing explanations offered by the pseudoscientific approach to those advanced by the scientific methods employed by archaeologists. (3).

342. OSTEOLOGY DIRECTED STUDY. This course gives students the opportunity to learn lab techniques and work with real archaeological collections. Students will develop the skills needed to identify and curate archaeological assemblages of faunal and human skeletal material. Students will have the opportunity to develop independent projects.

349. MEDICAL ANTHROPOLOGY. How health and healing practices are understood in diverse sociocultural contexts, and how they relate to global processes and power structures. The self, body, illness, healing, and biomedicine. (3).

353. LANGUAGE AND CULTURE. Interrelations between language, thought, and culture; role of language in cognition; practical studies. (3).

360. POLITICAL ECOLOGY. This course provides a critical engagement with some of the most pressing environmental issues of the 21st century: natural resource scarcity, socio-political insecurity, energy consumption, climate change, deforestation, protected area conservation, access to water, nuclear toxicity, and the green economy.   

365. ECONOMIC ANTHROPOLOGY. This course examines economic systems from a global ethnological perspective, taking as its key points of reference the topics of gifts, debt, credit, money, and value.  This class provides a critical engagement with the cultural dynamics of late capitalism.    

370. ARCHAEOLOGY OF POLITICAL SYSTEMS. This course is designed to examine the archaeology of ancient political systems. The theoretical concepts and perspectives of sociopolitical complexity and some archaeological examples will be discussed.

390. BIOARCHAEOLOGY ABROAD. Students learn bioarchaeological methodology and practice application in a field setting. Instruction focuses on excavation and forensic analysis of human remains from archaeological contexts. (3).

391. ARCHAEOLOGICAL FIELD SESSION ABROAD. Students learn archaeological methodology and practice application in a field setting. Instruction focuses on excavation techniques, mapping, data recording, and laboratory analysis of artifacts. (3).

392. FIELD STUDY. CULTURE OF THE ANDES. Interdisciplinary study of the Andes, emphasizing the continuing encounter between European and indigenous civilizations. Topics include theories of social change and identity formation, religious and cultural syncretism, indigenous political and social movements, and the region’s socioeconomic development. Taught in Bolivia. (3).

393. ETHNOGRAPHIC FIELD METHODS ABROAD. Introduction to qualitative research methods appropriate for cross-cultural field studies. Students learn ethnographic and sociocultural research techniques at an approved field site, conducting original research that culminates in a capstone project. (3).

394. MESOAMERICAN ART. Interdisciplinary approach to the history of the arts of Mesoamerica, from 1500 B.C.E. to the Spanish conquest, covering Olmec, Maya, Mixtec, and Aztec civilizations. (3).

398. TOPICS IN ANTHROPOLOGY. Selected topics in anthropology. The content will vary.

404. SOUTHERN FOLKLORE. History and contemporary role of folk culture in the South as shown in ballads, folk tales, religion, and folk arts and crafts. (3).

405. HUMAN OSTEOLOGY. This laboratory-based seminar focuses on teaching students methods of identification and analysis of human bone from archaeological sites. (3).

406. METHODS IN ETHNOHISTORY. Examines the cross-disciplinary concepts and methods to reconstruct the past of people who left no written record. (3).

407. METHODS IN ETHNOGRAPHY. Qualitative research methods appropriate for cross-cultural field studies. Students learn ethnographic and sociocultural research techniques. (3).

408. LABORATORY METHODS IN ANTHROPOLOGY. An overview of the analytical techniques of archaeology, emphasizing their development, application, and literature. (1-6).

409. ANTHROPOLOGICAL THEORY. This course will provide a historical overview of the major theoretical trends in anthropology. (3).

410. SHATTERZONE. The Consequences of Contact. This course examines the consequences of contact on the native inhabitants of the southeastern United States and the subsequent social and cultural transformations that followed. (3).

412. CERAMIC ANALYSIS.  This course is designed to teach methods and techniques for the analysis of ceramic materials from prehistoric sites by combining theory and analytical procedures with hands-on experience in the laboratory. Both traditional typological concerns as well as more modern analytic methods will be used to ultimately identify issues of production, exchange, function, design, social interaction, and technological and stylistic evolution. Students will also examine quantitative methods for the manipulation and interpretation of ceramic data.


415. HISTORICAL ARCHAEOLOGY. The course will demonstrate how researchers work with not only archaeological data but also historical documents, oral histories, and ethnographies in order to interpret the recent past. Students will get a comprehensive survey of methods, theories, and discoveries in historical archaeology.