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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Miriam Kahn
ANTH 456
Seattle Campus

Contemporary Ethnography

Discusses several contemporary ethnographies. Focuses on what constitutes ethnography and how ethnography is done, as well as the relationship between ethnographic description, methodology, and theory. Covers a range of geographical areas, theoretical perspectives, and literary styles.. Prerequisite: either a 100- 200 level ANTH course or LING 203.

Class description

Several contemporary ethnographies will be read and discussed. Focus is on what constitutes ethnography and how ethnography is done, as well as the relationship between ethnographic description, methodology, and theory. The ethnographies cover a range of geographical areas, theoretical perspectives, and literary styles. Prerequisite: one lower-level ANTH course.

Student learning goals

Define ethnography and identify its characteristics and applications

Understand the place of contemporary ethnography within its historical formation

Understand the relationship between ethnographic methodology, theory, and praxis

Raise and answer questions about the who, why, when, how, and where of “doing” ethnography

Conduct a mini-ethnographic project

General method of instruction

Class time will be spent on lectures, discussion (both small and large group discussion), in-class writing, films, and guest presentations.

Recommended preparation

One 200-level social science course is sufficient.

Class assignments and grading

in-class writing assignments ethnographic exercises mini-ethnography

30% – in-class writing assignments 10% – ethnographic exercise #1 10% – ethnographic exercise #2 30% – mini-ethnography 20% – class participation


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Miriam Kahn
Date: 11/07/2011