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Culture and Conflict Anthro 146

Time: Tues - Thurs 4.30PM - 5.45PM
Location: Clark Hall 204


When anthropologists discuss social change, they usually mean change brought about in pre-industrial societies through long-standing interaction with the nation-states of the industrialized world. Often this kind of change has been discussed in terms of “culture contact” and acculturation,” even when the term “catastrophic change” is perhaps more appropriate. More recently anthropologists have realized that in talking about change we must pay attention to the very real issues of dominance, subordination, and dependence that characterize the colonial experience, and the many situations of encounter by two or more cultures. Drawing on a survey of contemporary cultures (with some historic examples to provide comparative material) this course will examine situations of culture and conflict that have arisen in the process of modernization, globalization, and war. We will focus on several case studies from different societies, for example, the pluralistic Indian society, Indigenous people of the Americas and other parts of the world, the Hmong, a tribal agrarian group from Laos who are one of the newest immigrant groups in the United States. Our goal is to develop a theoretical framework for understanding our case studies, and to develop alongside this theoretical framework a proposal for how anthropologists and world citizens can positively affect these issues.