Jul 14, 2024  
College Catalog 2022-2023 
College Catalog 2022-2023 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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ANTH 1100 - Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

Credit Hours: 4.00

Prerequisites: None

This course is an exploration of the world’s many cultures to provide an understanding of the diversity in this ever-shrinking globalized world. The diversity will be illustrated through an examination of social organizations, religion, language, gender roles, the arts, and other elements of culture. In addition, anthropological theories and techniques will be studied to understand cultural evolution, adaptation, and globalization.

Billable Contact Hours: 4

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Outcome 1: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to recognize the variations among societies and their cultural behaviors.


  1. Acquire and institutionalize knowledge of non-Western, as well as Western cultures.
  2. Identify, in a culturally relative way, behaviors that disagree with common Western/American means.
  3. Understand that cultural norms differ from society to society.

Outcome 2: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to synthesize different approaches to the applications of ethnography, ethnology, and other anthropological techniques.


  1. Read ethnographies written by anthropologists.
  2. Actively engage in a participant observation assignment.
  3. Summarize the alternative methods of study utilized in anthropology.

Outcome 3: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to interpret ethical issues in dealing with peoples of the past and present.


  1. Examine the anthropological view of race as a cultural construct.
  2. Describe the process by which biological traits are transferred throughout populations.
  3. Define ethnocentrism and calculate its effect on global behaviors.

Outcome 4: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to give examples of the diversity in cultural systems.


  1. Define culture, describing it in its broadest sense.
  2. Illustrate the dynamics of difference in everyday relationships.
  3. Differentiate between alternate forms of kinship, marriage, gender roles, and religions, in addition to other behaviors.

Outcome 5: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to apply critical thinking techniques to contemporary problems.


  1. Analyze contemporary national critical issues of warfare, instability, and domination.
  2. Interpret data and formulate an informed opinion through research, and report on an ethnological comparison of cultures.

• Communication: The graduate can communicate effectively for the intended purpose and audience.
• Critical Thinking: The graduate can make informed decisions after analyzing information or evidence related to the issue.
• Global Literacy: The graduate can analyze human behavior or experiences through cultural, social, political, or economic perspectives.
• Information Literacy: The graduate can responsibly use information gathered from a variety of formats in order to complete a task.
• Quantitative Reasoning: The graduate can apply quantitative methods or evidence to solve problems or make judgments.
• Scientific Literacy: The graduate can produce or interpret scientific information presented in a variety of formats.

CDO marked YES apply to this course:
Global Literacy: YES
Quantitative Reasoning: YES
Scientific Literacy: YES

Week 1: Orientation: syllabus & course review

What is cultural anthropology?
Anthropologist: Franz Boas

Week 2: What is Culture?

Anthropologist: E. B. Tylor & Ruth Benedict

Week 3: How do you study a culture? Ethnography

Ethical issues
Anthropologist: Alice Cunningham Fletcher, Robert Harry Lowie, Rosita Worl
Participant Observation project

Week 4: Is culture nature or nurture?

Understanding evolution & brain development
Anthropologist: Louis & Mary Leakey, Jane Goodall, Diane Fossey

Week 5: What is language? How do language and culture work together?

Anthropologist: Alfred Kroeber, Georg Friedrich Grotefend, Edward Sapir, Jean-Francois Champollion

Week 6: What do you eat and how do you get your food?

Modes of subsistence
Anthropologist: Audrey Richards & Marshall Sahlin
Food and culture project

Week 7: Does money make the world go around? Examination of gift exchange and valuation of products

Anthropologist: Bronislaw Malinowski

Week 8: Midterm

Week 9: How do we deal with conflict & power?

Anthropologist: Evans Pritchard, Sally Engle Merry, Laura Nader

Week 10: Do all cultures view race in the same way?

What is ethnicity?
Anthropologist: Hortense Powdermaker, Zora Neale Hurston

Week 11: Understanding who we are through gender and sex.

Anthropologist: Margaret Mead, Derek Freeman, Matilda Coxe Stephenson

Week 12: How are we organized?

Family and marriage systems
Anthropologist: Claude Levi-Strauss, Clifford Geertz
Kinship Chart project

Week 13: What do we believe?

Religion & spirituality
Anthropologist: Roy Rappaport, Michael Harner, Sir James Frazer

Week 14: What about art in culture?

How to ‘read’ objects
Anthropologist: Nancy Munn, John Collier Jr.
Reading object project

Week 15: Cultural change, globalization and globalization

Anthropologist: Eric Wolf, Gregory Bateson, Leith Mullings, Paul Farmer, Michelle Rosaldo

Week 16: Review & Final Exam

Primary Faculty

Secondary Faculty

Associate Dean
Williams-Chehmani, Angie
Pritchett, Marie

Official Course Syllabus - Macomb Community College, 14500 E 12 Mile Road, Warren, MI 48088

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