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This course addresses selected, current issues and debates of a theoretical, methodological and interpretative nature. This course is compulsory for students wanting to enrol in the Anthropology Honours programme.
The theory course will address theorizing as itself a form of social praxis. Dominant strands of contemporary anthropology see theory as reflexive and (self-)critical, as interactive and evolving, and as implicated in constructivist–deconstructivist moves. This entails putting the interpretive and agentive faculties of social actors centre-stage. The course will in particularly address the central paradox of modern theoretical reflection, which on the one hand sees theory directly implicated in (and not outside of) its subject matter, while on the other hand it puts emphasis on the constitutive break with social praxis, and the effects of this break on the mode of theorizing. The course will look into constitutive premises of anthropological discourse and will in an exemplary manner question central conceptual tools of the discipline, which are too easily taken for granted. The course will also address representational biases inscribed into approaches informing the discipline, and will point out limitations of what we can legitimately attempt to understand.
After taking this course, students are expected:To have a good understanding of the important issues and theories in contemporary cultural anthropologyTo have developed expertise in the work of at least one contemporary theorist or topical area (ideally related to their own research)To have mastered skills in academic reading, writing and discussion, which are essential to their future academic careers.
Subject to approval of the Head of Department.
Students must attend one activity from each section.
A collection of journal articles and book chapters selected by the lecturer.
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Academic Integrity Guidance for Staff and Students PDF document
Using EndNote for referencing
Domestic fee $1,847.00
International Postgraduate fees
* Fees include New Zealand GST and do not include any programme level discount or additional course related expenses.
For further information see
Language, Social and Political Sciences.