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Unit (2020)

Information on this page, including unit offerings, is from the 2020 academic year.

Anthropology, Society and Culture (AST312)

Organisational Unit Global Studies
Credit Points 3
Availability MURDOCH: S1-internal, S1-external
Teaching Timetables Murdoch S1
Description Understanding cultural difference is at the heart of anthropology, and has great significance for the other
Humanities and Social Sciences. This unit is concerned with the other cultures that have been the subject of anthropological studies and the other disciplines with which anthropological ideas are engaged. Major debates in social and cultural anthropology, and the contributions of cultural-ecology, Marxist, symbolic, structural and post-modern approaches to cultural analysis are covered. Ethnographic films and documentaries are an important component of the unit.
Unit Learning Outcomes 1) Demonstrate knowledge of the history of anthropology and its engagement with other cultures.
2) Understand and apply key concepts in the discipline to contemporary issues.
3) Recognize the significance of anthropology's contribution to theory and analysis in other disciplines.
4) Critically reflect upon your own society and culture
5) Analyse a range of contemporary issues through competing theoretical perspectives.
Timetabled Learning Activities Lectures: 2 x 45 minutes per week (on-line); Workshop/Film: 1 x 3 hours per week (internal students)
Unit Learning Experiences Given the scope of the unit and the lack of prerequisites, it has been structured to take students of varying backgrounds through a logically developed series of topics. The unit will enable you to develop critical thinking skills, the ability to integrate concepts and apply theory to practical issues. To do so will require systematic and well-paced attention to all aspects of the unit. Lectures outline the successive frameworks through which different social and cultural systems have been interpreted within Western knowledge systems. This background will guide your reading, tutorial and discussion forum participation, assignments and examinations. Readings include case studies of particular cultures and a range of anthropological approaches for analysing these. Ethnographic and documentary films provide rich insights into a number of cultures, while enabling students to consider important questions of cross-cultural difference and representation.
Assessment Assessment is focused on components that enable students to critically reflect upon the ways in which we understand society and culture and the relevance of concepts in anthropology to fundamental questions and practical policy issues in the social sciences and humanities. Tutorial/workshop/online forum discussion and related written topic commentaries (30%) enable students to clarify concepts and interpret classic ethnographic studies and contemporary debates. The take- home concept review and essay (40%) and open-book examination (30%) will test students' knowledge of the history of anthropology and the approaches it offers for analysing culture and for critically reflecting upon cross-cultural engagement in the contemporary period.
Prerequisites Nil.
Appears in these Courses/Majors:
see individual structures for context
Appears in these Co-Majors Asian Societies and Cultures
Appears in these Minors Anthropology
Internet Access RequirementsMurdoch units normally include an online component comprising materials, discussions, lecture recordings and assessment activities. All students, regardless of their location or mode of study, need to have access to and be able to use computing devices with browsing capability and a connection to the Internet via Broadband (Cable, ADSL or Mobile) or Wireless. The Internet connection should be readily available and allow large amounts of data to be streamed or downloaded (approximately 100MB per lecture recording). Students also need to be able to enter into online discussions and submit assignments online.


Unit Coordinator
Associate Professor Carol Warren
Associate Professor - Asian Studies

Murdoch Campus
t: 9360 2345
e: C.Warren@murdoch.edu.au
o: 450.3.073 - Education and Humanities, Murdoch Campus
Unit Contacts

MURDOCH: S1-External
MURDOCH: S1-Internal
Associate Professor Carol Warren
Associate Professor - Asian Studies

Murdoch Campus
t: 9360 2345
e: C.Warren@murdoch.edu.au
o: 450.3.073 - Education and Humanities, Murdoch Campus
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