Academic Course Catalogs

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Anthropology

Angelo R. Orona, PhD, CHAIR
Alana K. Cordy-Collins, PhD
Jerome L. Hall, PhD

The Anthropology Major

Anthropology is the study of being human, culturally and biologically, currently and in the past. The objectives of the anthropology program demonstrate this holisticity by focusing on the concept of culture and the fact of human biology. Analytical studies of human behavior contribute temporal and cross-cultural comparative perspectives to the larger body of scientific inquiry, thus grounding the student in fundamental concepts. As the holistic discipline of being human, anthropology has application for all fields of endeavor. Courses in anthropology are particularly suitable for students interested in international business, resource management, environmental concerns, teaching, educational administration, public service, and archaeology.

The major program in anthropology will (1) prepare the interested undergraduate for graduate studies in anthropology and, (2) provide a sound background for all humanistically-related vocations.
Upon completion of 12 semester units of anthropology with a 3.0 or better GPA, students are eligible to join the Gamma Chapter of Lambda Alpha, the National Collegiate Honor Society for anthropology.
Resources of the anthropology program include the Anthropology Museum, the David W. May American Indian Collection & Gallery, Archaeological Field Schools, the Anthropology Laboratory, and the Research Associates.

Recomended Preparation for the Major

ANTH 101, 102, and 103

Major Requirements

24 units of upper division coursework chosen in consultation with the advisor, including 349W (satisfies core curriculum writing requirement), and including:

1. one biological anthropology course selected from ANTH 310, 311, 312, 313, 314
2. one cultural anthropology course selected from ANTH 320D, 321D, 323D, 327, 328, 370, 380
3. one archaeology course selected from ANTH 330D, 331D, 334, 335, 336, 339, 350, 390
4. ANTH 300, 460
5. elective courses

The Anthropology Minor

  • ANTH 101, 102, 103, and nine Upper-Division Units.
  • Satisfaction of Core Curriculum Requirements
  • ANTH 101, 102, and 103 may be used to satisfy the core curriculum requirement in the Social Sciences area.

The Social Science Teaching Credential

Students wishing to earn a Social Science Teaching Credential may do so while completing a major in anthropology. The specific requirements for the teaching credential differ from general requirements for the anthropology major. Students should consult the department chair.

Introductory Courses

ANTH 101 INTRODUCTION TO BIOLOGICAL ANTHROPOLOGY (3)

An investigation of the nature of humankind, including the history of evolutionary theory, the fossil record, dating techniques, primate evolution and behavior, and human heredity, variation, and adaptation. Every semester.

ANTH 102 INTRODUCTION TO CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY (3)

An introduction to the nature of culture, techniques of fieldwork, linguistics, components of cultural systems, such as subsistence patterns, socio-political organization, religion, worldview, diversity, change, and current problems. Every semester.

ANTH 103 INTRODUCTION TO ARCHAEOLOGY (3)

A discussion of the techniques and concepts used by archaeologists for developing insights into the behavior of past societies; a survey of past societies as revealed by archaeological research. Every semester.

Upper-Division Courses

ANTH 300 RESEARCH SEMINAR (3)

A course wherein students develop a special topic that contributes new knowledge in the discipline. Research includes laboratory, field, or library investigation.

Biological Anthropology Courses

ANTH 310 HUMAN EVOLUTION (3)

An examination of early developments and current knowledge about hominid origins. New scientific discoveries which are shedding light on early hominids will be investigated, as will evidence of human biological and cultural adaptation, and the theories surrounding modern humans and their relationships to the Neandertals. Strongly recommend ANTH 101 as preparation.

ANTH 311 PRIMATOLOGY (3)

An introduction to the study of non-human primates: prosimians, New World monkeys, Old World monkeys, and apes. The course focuses on primate behavior and how it relates to the study of human biocultural evolution. Of special concern are the relationships and adaptations of the primates to varied environments. The primate collection at the San Diego Zoo will be an integral part of the course. Various observational and data collecting techniques will be employed in zoo projects. Strongly recommend ANTH 101 as preparation.

ANTH 312 PALEOPATHOLOGY (3)

An introduction to the study of ancient human pathologies through the study of bones and mummies. The course will focus on how the human skeletal system adapts to trauma, disease organisms, and environmental conditions, such as diet, climate, temperature, soil, and water. Basic skeletal anatomy and other osteological techniques such as age and sex determination will be an essential part of the course. Current problems in epidemiology will be examined in relation to diseases of the past. Strongly recommend ANTH 101 as preparation.

ANTH 313 FORENSIC ANTHROPOLOGY (3)

A survey of the techniques used by forensic anthropologists to assist in the identification of human skeletal remains. The course will focus on learning how to tell human from animal bones, sex identification from the skeleton, age estimation from bone and teeth, stature estimation from measurements of limb bones, and occupational inferences from stress marks on bones. Strong recommend ANTH 101 as preparation.

ANTH 314 BONES: HUMAN OSTEOLOGY (3)

The study of the human skeleton in two main areas: identification of recently deceased individuals in a legal context, and historic or prehistoric remains as a contribution to human history. This hands-on course will include bone biology, development, growth, variation, and repair. Students will identify all parts of the skeletal system and dentition and learn how to measure bones and identify non-metric features and stress markers. Strongly recommend ANTH 101 as preparation.
Cultural Anthropology Courses

ANTH 320D NORTH AMERICAN INDIAN CULTURES (3)

A survey of prehistory, history, social organization, economy, worldview, and contemporary issues of American Indian and Inuit groups across North America (north of Mexico) from ethnohistorical and applied anthropology perspectives. Regional adaptations stemming from environmental and intercultural linkages are highlighted. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 as preparation.

ANTH 321D CALIFORNIA AND GREAT BASIN INDIAN CULTURES (3)

An overview of the environment and cultural history of native California and the neighboring Great Basin region. Close examination of Southern California groups: Gabrileño, Serrano, Cahuilla, Cupeño, Luiseño, and Kumeyaay cultures and contemporary issues. Lecture-discussions, ethnographies, biographies, and California Indian guest lecturers. Field trips may be included. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 as preparation.

ANTH 323D SOUTHWEST INDIAN CULTURES (3)

A survey of the ethnography of Native Americans in the Greater Southwest (the American Southwest and the Mexican Northwest). Emphasis on the interplay of each culture with its ecological environment and surrounding cultures, particularly the historically dominant colonial European settlers. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 as preparation.

ANTH 327 SOUTH AMERICAN INDIAN CULTURES (3)

A survey of the aboriginal populations of South America; origins and development of culture types as revealed by archaeology, biological anthropology, colonial writings, and modern ethnographic studies. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 as preparation.

ANTH 328 CARIBBEAN CULTURES (3)

A survey of the environments, ethnohistory, cultures, and current concerns of the peoples of the Caribbean region, including the Greater and Lesser Antilles and the east coast of Central America. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 as preparation.

ANTH 370 INDIGENOUS RELIGIONS (3)

An examination of the elements, forms, and symbolism of religion among indigenous peoples; role of religion in society; anthropological theories of belief systems. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 as preparation.

ANTH 380 CULTURAL DIVERSITY (3)

A cross-cultural study of social systems; principles of organization and relationships of society to ecological conditions; methodology of comparisons; and ethnographic materials. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 as preparation.

Archaeology Courses

ANTH 330D NORTH AMERICAN ARCHAEOLOGY (3)

An examination of the development of the prehistoric cultures of North America from the earliest occupations to the historic period. This course examines the evidence for the first migrations into the North America and subsequent development of the diversity of Native American cultures. The culture area approach will be used to organize the class discussions. The primary emphasis will be the culture areas north of Mexico, but developments in Mesoamerica will be discussed where relevant. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 331D SOUTHWESTERN ARCHAEOLOGY (3)

An examination of the development and changing face of human adaptation in the southwestern part of North America since the earliest human occupations. Views based on archaeological evidence are emphasized. The course highlights the diversity of environmental zones and shifting strategies of resource utilization seen in the region that date from prehistoric times to the end of the 19th century. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 334 SOUTH AMERICAN ARCHAEOLOGY (3)

An introductory survey of the prehistoric cultures of Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, and Chile. The focus of the course is upon the artistic, ideological, social, and economic aspects of the Cupisnique, Moche, Nasca, Inca, and other cultures. The development and evolution of prehispanic Andean society are examined from a processual viewpoint. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 335 NAUTICAL ARCHAEOLOGY (3)

An introduction to the practice of archaeology underwater. This course examines maritime-based civilizations and their impact on society. Emphasis is placed on the role of the ship in exploration, discovery, contact, empire, trade, and warfare. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 336 PRE-CLASSICAL SEAFARING (3)

A survey course that will examine the advent of seafaring through the iconographic and archaeological records, from the earliest of times up to the Classical Period in the Mediterranean. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 339 POST-MEDIEVAL SEAFARING AND EMPIRE (3)

A survey course that examines the advents of shipbuilding and seafaring to promote Empire in the New World. Beginning with Columbus’ voyages at the close of the fifteenth century and concluding with the American Civil War, students will utilize archaeological and historical sources to better understand colonization, waterborne commerce, and naval warfare. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 350 PEOPLING OF THE AMERICAS (3)

When 16th century Europeans arrived in the New World they found it densely inhabited. Speculation then began as to who the people were, where they had come from, and when they had arrived. From the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel to the ancestors of the Ainu, no group seems to have been exempt from consideration. In this survey course we examine various claims for places of origin and times of arrival. We investigate the level and weight of available evidence, and learn how to scientifically evaluate it. Archaeological, geological, bioanthropological, linguistic, genetic, and maritime data are brought to bear on the question. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 390 ARCHAEOLOGY OF THE BIBLE (3)

A two-fold broad-based survey course emphasizing historical contexts, archaeological sites, and material culture from the Early Bronze through Iron Ages in the Eastern Mediterranean world, corresponding to historical and literary references in the 1) Bible (Tanakh) and 2) New Testament. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

General Anthropology Courses

ANTH 341 MUSEOLOGY (3)

An introduction to museum work combining theory, critique, and practice. The course presents the history of museums, the development of curation and conservation practices, and focuses on the educational role of modern museums through exhibit design and installation. Field trips to local museums and galleries are requisite. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 and 103 as preparation.

ANTH 343 THE ANCIENT DEAD: BIOARCHAEOLOGY (3)

An examination of how archaeologists and biological anthropologists excavate and analyze the remains of past societies. Students are introduced to the theories, methods, and techniques of fieldwork and laboratory analysis. Basic skeletal and artifact analysis is the core of the course. Lectures, readings, group discussions, digital presentations, and guest speakers are also included. Field trips may supplement the core material. Strongly recommend ANTH 101 and 103 as preparation.

ANTH 349W WRITING ANTHROPOLOGY (3)

A practicum in anthropological writing including professional publication (books and journals), grant proposals (both for funds and fellowships), popular journals, museum exhibition catalogs, and electronic media. Students in this course will learn to communicate effectively in various formats following guidelines established by the American Anthropological Association, American Association of Museums, and funding agencies such as the National Science Foundation. Strongly recommend ANTH 101, 102, or 103 as preparation. Every fall semester.

ANTH 360 NAUTICAL ANTHROPOLOGY OF CALIFORNIA (3)

A survey course that examines the advent of seafaring in California, from the Paleolithic to Modern Ages. Students will utilize archaeological and historical sources to explore a variety of strategies for resource utilization, water-borne commerce, and the burgeoning naval defense industry, beginning with early coastal settlers and ending in the 21st century. Emphasis will be placed on San Diego’s maritime history. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 362 PIRACY IN THE NEW WORLD (3)

An examination of the sociology of seafaring communities through the historical record of piratical activity, the economic impact of piracy on contemporary societies, the archaeological evidence of pirate ventures, the sensationalism of pirate legend, and the cultural responses to the influences of the pirate phenomenon. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 364 SURF CULTURE AND HISTORY (3)

This course examines the historical and socio-cultural components of one of Southern California’s fastest growing leisure activities. Successful participation in this sport and membership in its local subcultures are contingent upon specialized knowledge of geography, wave physics, weather patterns, ocean biota, board design, and the often complex yet subtle intricacies of regional customs. Emphasis is placed on surfing’s Polynesian roots and their transmission — via the Hawaiian Islands — to Southern California, whence surf music, literature, art, and movies have become ambassadors for an international phenomenon.

ANTH 460 ETHNOGRAPHIC FIELD METHODS (3)

A fieldwork course that applies standard ethnographic methods of participant/observation and interviewing techniques, life history studies, demographic method, genealogical method, and etic-emic distinctions. No library work required. Student initiates individual field research projects using ethnographic techniques. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 as preparation. Every spring semester.

ANTH 463 ANTIQUITIES: WHO OWNS THE PAST? (3)

An anthropological investigation of ethical ownership of the past. The black-market in antiquities is a multi-million dollar a year business despite the attempt of most countries to stake legal claim to such objects as national patrimony. This course examines the current chain of events in antiquities trafficking, from the peasant digging in his field to sales in the world’s premier auction houses. It also examines the means by which most of the world’s museums came by their antiquities collections and the controversy concerning their continued ownership. Strongly recommend ANTH 103 as preparation.

ANTH 470 SHAMANS, ART, AND CREATIVITY (3)

An investigation of the phenomenon of art in human society from earliest times to the present. The course considers art as an integral part of culture and examines the role of the shaman in art’s origins. The course samples a wide range of art traditions in their cultural context, such as that of the Huichols of northwestern Mexico, the Shipibo of eastern Peru, and the Tungus reindeer herders of Siberia. Strongly recommend ANTH 102 as preparation.

ANTH 494 ISSUES IN ANTHROPOLOGY (3)

Critical discussions with regard to major issues confronting the various sub-disciplines of anthropology. May be repeated for anthropology elective credit if topic differs. Prerequisite: consent of instructor.

ANTH 498 INTERNSHIP (3)

An apprenticeship to be undertaken within the San Diego anthropological community (that is, San Diego Museum of Man, the San Diego Archaeological Center, the Office of the San Diego County Archaeologist, CALTRANS, Mingei International Museum, etc.). The apprenticeship will be developed by the student, his or her mentor, and the Department of Anthropology. Prerequisite: consent of department chair. Every semester.

ANTH 499 INDEPENDENT STUDY (1-3)

A project developed by the student in coordination with an instructor that investigates a field of interest to the student not normally covered by established anthropology courses. Prerequisite: consent of instructor and department chair. Every semester.