|Anthropology 708||Place: CAB B028 (Initially at least)|
|University of Virginia||Monday:4:00-6:30|
|Spring 2004||Fraser D.Neiman|
This seminar explores current methodological and theoretical issues in archaeology. Topics we will consider this semester include subsistence and population dynamics, social inequality, cooperation and competition, consumption, identity, and gender. The course emphasizes how explicit theoretical models not only inform the methods we use to make sense of archaeological data, but also facilitate evaluation of the resulting interpretations. Our focus on modeling means that much of the reading will be derived from recent interdisciplinary theoretical work at the borders of anthropology, economics, biology, and ecology.
Course Schedule and Reading|
The schedule and readling list for the course are available here. Note that there will be updates to the list as the semester progresses. I will announce these in class as well as posting them here.
Nearly all journal articles and book chapters can be found on Toolkit.
You should also purchase at the U.Va. Bookstore:
I expect you to do the assigned reading on time, attend every class, and participate thoughtfully in all class discussions.
Written work for the course includes a short (< 1 page) précis of each assigned article or book chapter. Each précis should contain an outline of the central ideas, methods, and results of the piece. It can be written in complete sentences or in outline form. Each précis should be designed so that you can use it next week, next semester, or next year as the basis for a short lecture that would enable the audience to understand the content of the article. You may also include your reactions, but the primary goal of the precis is to help you grasp the central arguments, so that you can react intelligently to them. The précis are due at the beginning of the class at which the reading is to be discussed. Late précis will not the accepted. You may want to bring an extra copy of your précis to class, so that you can refer to them during class discussion.
In addition to the précis, you should bring to class one or two written questions that you'd like to see discussed, based on the reading for that week. Questions will be handed with your précis. We will write the questions on the board at the outset and use them to guide our discussion during the seminar. You should be prepared to kick off the discussion of your question by explaining why you think it is important and suggesting a tentative answer or two, or profitable directions in which to look for them.
Finally, there is a term paper. In it you should use one of the models or families of models that we have covered in class to address a chunk of the archaeological record that is of special interest to you. Paper topics must be cleared with me by Spring Break. Your term paper is due at the last class meeting.
By the numbers... Class Discussion 30%, Weekly Papers: 30%, Weekly Questions: 5%, Term Paper: 35%.
Last update... January 19, 2004