Graduate Course Listing

The following graduate courses are among those normally offered. Not all courses are offered in every academic year; consult the College's Dynamic Course Guide for a current course listing.

Anthropological Theory I & II

The course will discuss major concepts, theories and findings in Cultural and Social Anthropology. Students will be introduced to the history of thought within the discipline from 19th century evolutionism to post-modernism.

Biological Anthropology

Anatomy and behavior of non-human primates, fossil hominids, and modern human populations are analyzed via theories and methods in biological anthropology. Emphasis is given to construction of models for understanding the evolution of human behavior focusing on bipedalism, technology and language.

Archaeological Theory

A critical examination of the historical development of archaeological thought, examined from a world-wide and generational perspective.

Archaeological Method

A general introduction to field and laboratory techniques of prehistoric and historical archaeological research.

Anthropological Linguistics

This course will examine the history and theories of linguistic anthropology. Focus will be on the ways in which linguistics has influenced the development of anthropological theories concerning cognition and practice.

Documentary Anthropology

Introduction to methods and theories of text analysis for archaeological and anthropological research. Structural, symbolic and cognitive models of culture are presented. Emphasis is on the integration of these models, the use and evaluation of documents by historical archaeologists and historical anthropologists, and research with primary historical data.

Ethnographic History

Critical readings of recent works by anthropologists and historians, with an emphasis on cross-disciplinary theory and methods.

Writing and Publishing in Anthropology

A practical introduction to the whole range of writing and publishing activities engaged in by anthropologists, this course will cover techniques, conventions and practices regarding grant proposals, book reviews, CV s, articles, abstracts, books, research reports and job applications.


An examination of Euro-American ceramics, glassware, tobacco pipes and other portable artifacts of the period c. 1600-1900 AD. Students will learn how to date, identify and analyze classes of objects from historic archaeological contexts as well as how to obtain information pertaining to technology, function, social and economic status.

Historical Archaeology

A review of the method and theory of American Historical archaeology, with emphasis on specific research strategies and accomplishments in relation to the broader study of American material culture.

Field Work in Archaeology

The application of archaeological methods to an individual field project within the framework of a supervised archaeological field program.

Archaeological Conservation I

An introduction to the theory and practice of archaeological conservation, including systems of deterioration, treatment and storage. The first semester emphasizes the material science and technological underpinnings of archaeological artifacts, the nature of the archaeological environment and the deterioration of artifacts.

Archaeological Conservation II

In the second semester of the course, students receive instruction and experience in the laboratory treatment of artifacts from 17th to 19th-century archaeological sites in North America and the West Indies.

Environmental Archaeology

This course explores our understanding of the place of people in the environment and the role environmental variables play in archaeological models of cultural change. The course consists of three sections: history of environmental studies and social theory, methodologies used to study the environment and specific case studies of the dynamics of human-environmental relationships from an archaeological perspective.


An introduction to the identification and interpretation of animal bones recovered from archaeological sites.

Foodways and the Archaeological Record

Archaeological perspective on how hunting/gathering/agricultural societies have procured, distributed, prepared and consumed food.

Practicing Cultural Resource Management

This course introduces students to the practice of cultural resource management (contract archaeology), including hands-on experience in planning, proposal preparation, field and laboratory strategies, project management and the reporting process.

Industrial Archaeology

An introduction to the study of industrially-related artifacts, sites and systems within their geographical, cultural and historic contexts.

North American Prehistory

A seminar on the prehistory of North American north of Mexico. Topics covered are: the peopling of the North America, the cultural development of indigenous peoples, the archaeology of Native Americans, and the cultural processes that attempt to explain North American culture history.

Native People of Eastern North America

This course treats the native people of eastern North America as they have been viewed ethnographically, theoretically and historically. Students will apply anthropological theory to historical and contemporary issues regarding native people of the eastern United States, and develop critical skills through reading, research and writing about these people.

Exploring the Afro-American Past

A study of the commonalities and differences across Afro-America from the U.S. to Brazil. Works in anthropology, history and literature will be used to explore the nature of historical consciousness within the African Diaspora and diverse ways of understanding the writing about Afro-American pasts.

Maroon Societies, Past and Present

An exploration of the African American communities created by escaped slaves throughout the Americas from Brazil up through the Caribbean and into the southern United States.

Archaeology of Cities and States

A comparative approach to the study of large-scale settlements and settlement systems in the ancient world, with a focus on variability in demography, economy and political organization; areas to be discussed include East and South Asia, Africa, Mesoamerica and Peru.

Historical Archaeology of the West Indies and Bermuda

The examination of European adaption to and settlement of the Atlantic islands, with particular emphasis given to recent archaeological research on English, Dutch, French, Spanish and Danish sites.

Applied Anthropology

This course provides students with the opportunity to examine the juncture between theory and practice. Readings will focus on the contributions of anthropologists in development, study of corporations and education.

Globalization, Democratization and Neonationalisms

The aim of this course is to develop an anthropological understanding of some of the most salient processes—such as ethnic revival/conflict, democratization and the rise of neonationalisms—that recast the world into a small/single place, as well as cultural imageries and the heightening of consciousness of the world as a whole.

National Formations and Post-Colonial Identities

This course explores how indigenous practices shaped nations and identities in non-European worlds. In addition to scholarly studies, we read historical novels, autobiographical accounts and political manifestoes written by individuals who, mobilizing the indigenous past, orchestrated the construction of “sovereign” nation-states.

Political Ecology

This course examines how ecological problems such as deforestation, loss of biodiversity, water and fishing resources, environmental degradation and even natural disasters are part of complex social processes. Political ecology can briefly be described as the study of how people compete to gain access to, maintain control of and utilize natural resources.

Arts of the African Diaspora

An exploration of artistic creativity in the African Diaspora; consideration of tradition and art history, the articulation of aesthetic ideas, cross-fertilization among different forms and media, the role of gender, the uses of art in social life, kinds of meaning, the nature of artistic creativity and continuities with artistic ideas and form in African societies.

Religion and Expressive Culture in Africa and the New World

Conceived as a broad survey, this course introduces students to Black religious traditions and spiritual practices in the Americas through the lens of expressive and material culture.

American Material Culture

This course examines American life and culture, past and present, through its material artifacts. It focuses on the historical development and behavioral aspects of American material culture as revealed by archaeological and documentary research. The relationship of material culture including vernacular architecture, ceramics, glass, mortuary art and other household and industrial artifacts, and various social dimensions, such as social class, sex, and ethnicity, will be explored.

Collecting and Exhibiting Culture

Ethnographic collecting in different parts of the world, questions of cultural ownership and appropriation, theories of acquisitions and preservation used by museums and private collectors, and current debates about the exhibition of both objects and people.

Cultural Politics of Art

Exploration of the conceptual underpinnings of the art world, defined to include everyone from artists, museum visitors, gallery owners, and teachers to collectors, curators, critics, and charlatans. Critical consideration of anthropological and art historical perspectives in addressing questions central to both disciplines.

Statistical Anthropology

This course introduces quantitative research methods in anthropology. Following a discussion of research design, the class considers analytical techniques used to describe archaeological, ethnographic and biological data. The course focuses on descriptive statistics, probability and sampling, and univariate, multivariate and non-parametric statistics. Students use computer software (SPSS) as a tool for implementing statistical analysis.

Writing and Reading Culture

Trends in Ethnography (and Ethnographic History) during the past two decades. Students will begin with two “classic” monographs, go on to read about the “crisis” in representation as depicted in Clifford and Marcus, and then devote themselves to a critical analysis of a range of more recent work.