Course Details

ANT 102: Introduction to Anthropology

This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to the discipline of Anthropology, familiarizing them with the discipline's key concepts, institutions and debates. The course will provide the beginnings of thinking coherently and critically about the effects of class, caste, ethnic, racial and gender hierarchies in both simple and complex societies. In doing so, it will introduce students to the primary domains of Cultural Anthropology, all the while assessing how Anthropologists operate through fieldwork and in their responsibility in representing the 'other.' The course is intended for beginners, both those who will major in Anthropology as well as students from other departments who need to fulfill a social science requirement.


  • A brief overview on Anthropology, specialization in Anthropology and significance of Anthropology as an academic discipline 
  • Introduction to the concept of culture
  • Fieldwork and modes of ethnographic representation
  • Symbols and Language
  • Social Organization: Kinship, Marriage and Family
  • Social Inequality: Gender and Sexuality
  • Class, Race, Ethnicity and Nationality 
  • Economy and Exchange 
  • Cross cultural Understandings of Person and Self
  • Religion: The Sacred and the Profane, Symbol, Myth and Ritual. 
  • Societies and Change: Rural and Urban 
  • Globalization 
  • Anthropology in the 21st century

Suggested Texts and References:
Nanda, Serena and Warms, Richard. L . Cultural Anthropology (10th Edition). Cengage Learning, 2010.
Abu-Lughod, Lila. Writing Women's Worlds: Bedouin Stories. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993.
Ahmed Rahnuma, Manosh Chowdhury. Nribigganer Prothom Path. Dhaka: Ekushey Publications., 2002.
Ember, Carol. R, Melvin Ember and Peter N. Peregrine. Anthropology. India: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2007.
Evans-Pritchard, E. E. Witchcraft, Oracles and Magic among the Azande. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1976.
Fox, Robin. Kinship and Marriage. Baltimore, MD: Penguin, 1967.
Haviland, William A. Cultural Anthropology: The Human Challenge. Singapore, Australia, Canada, UK, Mexico and Spain: Wadsworth and Thomson Learning, 2005.
Levi-Strauss, Claude. The Elementary Structures of Kinship. Boston: Beacon Press, 1969.
Rabinow, Paul. Reflections of Fieldwork in Morocco. California: University of California Press, 1977.

ANT 103: Biological Anthropology

This course aims to introduce the field of Biological Anthropology to undergraduate students. A significant part of the course will focus on the methodology of Biological Anthropology. It will also address the principles of evolution and genetics; population variation among modern human; understanding Homo sapiens as a species belonging to the class mammalian and the similarity between humans and other primate species. This course will also orient students to various techniques of investigating the evolution of humans through fossil and molecular evidence. After completion of the course students will have a base line understanding in the principles of evolution and genetics; human variation and to think about humans as part of the larger primate family.


  • The field of Biological Anthropology
  • Methodology to study Biological Anthropology
  • Principles of Genetics and Evolution: Basic genetics and evolutionary principles
  • Vertebrates and Primates: Taxonomy and Trends in Primate Evolution
  • The Hominid Fossil Record: Origins, Early Hominids, Recent Hominids, Homo Sapiens
  • Human Variation: Classification Systems, Polymorphism, Population Genetics, Adaptation
  • Ecology: Natural Environments, Social Environments, Human Response Mechanisms, Demography
  • Recent critiques on the study of Biological Anthropology

Suggested Texts and References:
Jurmain, R. Lynn, Kilgore W. Trevathan, and Russel L. Ciochon. Introduction to Physical Anthropology.Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth, 2011.
Stanford, Crais, John S. Allen, and Susan Anton. Biological Anthropology. New York: Prentice Hall, 2011.
Relethford, John H. The Human Species: An Introduction to Biological Anthropology. Lakewood, WA: McGraw Hill, 2009.
Park, Michael Alan. Biological Anthropology. Boston: McGraw Hill, 2009.

ANT 201: Language, Society and Culture

This course will provide an introduction to Anthropological perspectives on language and how language influences social life. Throughout the semester, students will acquire a basic understanding of the main approaches, analytical tools, methods and theories used by linguistic Anthropologists to study human communication. The relationship between culture and language will be explained through a historical account of the various stages of the development of linguistic Anthropology as a sub discipline as well as ethnographic examples of how Anthropologists use language and analyze speech patterns to explain cultural phenomena.


  • From Anthropological Linguistics to the Linguistic Anthropology
  • Theoretical Concerns in understanding Language
  • Structural Perspective and the Sub System of Language
  • Language as System of Sign
  • Language and the Search for Mathematical Principles
  • Transformational Generative Grammer
  • Language Mediating between Psychological and Social 
  • From Language to Culture and Power
  • Social Historical Approach in Studying Language

Suggested Texts and References:
Duranti, Alessandro. Linguistic Anthropology: History, Ideas, and Issues, in
Linguistic Anthropology: A Reader, Alessandro Duranti (ed), Blackwell Publishing, pp 1-
32, 2011.
Hymes, Dell. On Communicative Competence, in Linguistic Anthropology: A
Reader, Alessandro Duranti (ed), Blackwell Publishing, 53-73. 1972.
Morgan, Marcylenia H. The African-American Speech Community, in Linguistic
Anthropology: A Reader, Alessandro Duranti (ed), Blackwell Publishing, pp 74-94.1994.
Jackobson, Roman. Concluding Statement: Linguistic and Poetics, in Style in
Language, Thomas Sebeok (ed), M.I.T. Press, pp 351-377. 1960.
Fishman, Joshua. Societal Bilingualism: Stable and Transitional, in The Sociology
of Language: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Language in Society, Newbury House
Publisher, pp 91-106. 1972.
Hall, Stuart. Representation: Cultural Representation and Signifying Practices. Open University Press, 1997.
Jourdan, Christine. Pidgins and Creoles Genesis: an Anthropological Offering, in
Language, Culture, and Society, Christine Jourdan and Kevin Tuite (eds), Cambridge
University Press, pp 135-155. 2006.
Jackson, Jean. Language Identity of the Colombian Vaupés Indians, in
Explorations in the Ethnography of Speaking, Richard Bauman, and Joel Sherzer (eds),
Cambridge University Press, pp 50-64, 1974.

ANT 202: Social Inequality

This course examines the different dimensions of social inequality and power. It focuses on income inequality, status inequality, racial, gender and ethnic inequalities and so on both from historical and theoretical perspectives. A wealth of information and empirical evidence are used to explain the different definitions, dimensions and approaches to the study of social inequality and stratification. In addition, it critically looks at different theoretical explanations for causes and persistence of inequality and implications of inequality for society.


  • Conceptual View: What is Inequality, Universality of Inequality, Nature of Inequality, Significance of Inequality
  • Theories: Philosophical Perspectives; Marx & Weber; Functionalist Theories, Durkheim, Parsons, Merton, Kingsley Davis and Moore, Tumin. Conflict Theories- Dahrendorf, Lenski. 
  • Origin of Social Inequality 
  • Economic Inequality: Concept of Class, Marxist and non-Marxist view of Class Structure, Technology and Income Inequality, Global Context, Bangladesh Class Structure, Gini-Coefficient.
  • Status inequality: Theory of Social Status, Spheres of Status, Occupational Status Ranking, Determinants of Status in Rural and Urban Bangladesh, Status in Global Context. 
  • Political inequality: Concept of Power, Distribution of Political Power, Interlink age of Economic and Political Power, Power Inequality in the Work Experiences, Global Context, Bangladesh Context – Military and Civilian Regime.
  • Sex and Gender inequality: Status of Women in the Past, Present Status, Sociological Perspectives, General Theories of Sex and Gender Inequality, Obstacles to Development.
  • Racial and Ethnic Inequality: Definitional Problem, Theory of Racial Inequality, Bangladesh perspective – Problems in CHT.
  • Education and Inequality: Factors Related with Educational Inequality, Education Inequality from Bangladesh perspective, Reasons for Dropout, Impact on Economy.
  • Global Inequality: Dependency and Modernization Theory, Global Inequality and Bangladesh, place of Bangladesh in Globalization
  • Political Religion and Inequality: Rise of Islamism in Power, Nationalism, Islamism and Inequality from Bangladesh perspective
  • Consequences of Inequality: Social Movements and Inequality, Causes and Consequences of Movements, Labour Movement, Nature of trade union in Bangladesh, Feminist Movement and Inequality.

Suggested Texts and References:
Hurst, Charles E. Social Inequality: Forms, Causes and Consequences. Bosotn: Allyn and Bacon, 2007.
Marger, Martin. Social Inequality: Patterns and Processes. New York: McGraw Hill, 2007.
Kriesberg, Louis. Social Inequality. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall Inc, 1979.
Karim, Nazmul A.K. Changing society in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh Dhaka: Nawroze Kitabistan, 1996.
Rahman, Atiur. Peasants and Classes: A Study with Differentiation in Bangladesh. Dhaka: UPL, 1986.
Lenski, Gerhard E. Power and Privilege: A Theory of Social Stratification. New York: Mcgraw hill, 1966.

ANT 203: Social Theory

This course will introduce students with the classical and contemporary theories in the social sciences. It aims to inculcate in the student. A critical understanding of various schools of thought existing in Sociology and Anthropology, along with the different social and political contexts in which different thinkers carved out different ways of studying and thinking about society. The first half of the semester will focus on classical thinkers like Karl Marx, Max Weber, Emile Durkheim, Antonio Gramsci and Harriet Martineau. A thorough and critical reflection of these thinkers and their ideas will lead to the second half of the semester, with its focus on contemporary theories of Post-structuralism/ postmodernism, Feminism and Post Colonialism. This course provides a good overall understanding of the history and progression of social thought, relevant to the social sciences and humanities. It is a useful course for all undergraduates, and a prerequisite to ANT 301 and 302.


  • Introduction to Social/Sociological Theory 
  • Socio-economic and the Political Situation of the 19th century Europe; Intellectual Development. 
  • Auguste Comte
  • Karl Marx
  • Max Weber
  • Emile Durkheim 
  • Antonio Gramsci 
  • Harriet Martineau 
  • Jurgen Habermas 
  • J.F. Jean-Francois Lyotard 
  • Feminist, Gay and Queer Theory
  • Edward Said 
  • Talal Asad

Suggested Texts and References:
Appelrouth, Scott, and Laura Desfor Edles. Classical and Contemporary Social Theory. LA, Calif Pine Forge Press, 2008.
Elliott, ANTony, and Bryan S. Turner, eds. Profiles in Contemporary Social Theory. London: Sage, 2001.
Gramsci, Antonio. "An Antonio Gramsci Reader : Selected Writings, 1916-1935". Lawrence and Wishart, 2000.
Morrison, K. Marx, Durkheim, Weber: Foundations of Modern Social Thought. London: Sage, 1995.
Ritzer, George. Classical Sociological Theory. New York: McGraw Hill, 2000.
Turner, Bryan S., ed. Cambridge Dictionary of Sociology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 2006.

ANT 301: History of Anthropological Thought

This course surveys the history of Anthropological thought from the Enlightenment into the early 1970s. It allows the student an understanding of the ideas that shaped Anthropology from its beginnings, and how it developed, from amidst theories about society, and the role of humans in it, into a "modern" social science discipline. The themes which the course will highlight are: the conflict between materialist and idealist explanations of cultural phenomena, debates about the degree of integration or patterning of sociocultural systems, methods of cross cultural comparison, the link between Anthropological discourse and surrounding political and institutional contexts, and the reciprocal borrowing of ideas and models between Anthropology and other scientific and humanistic disciplines. The course is mandatory for students who will major in Anthropology, and open to any student interested in the Social Sciences.


  • Setting the Scene
  • British and US Victorian Anthropology
  • From Moral Philosophy to Social Science
  • Foundations of Social Theory in Germany and France
  • Anglo-American Anthropology: Culture and Personality in the US and Structure and Function in British Social Anthropology
  • U.S. Cultural Anthropology and German Racial Science
  • The Development of British Social Anthropology and the Post-Colonial Critique

Suggested Texts and References:
Asad, Talal. ed. Anthropology & the Colonial Encounter. London Ithaca Press, 1973.
Barth, Fredrik, Andre Gingrich, Robert Parkin, and Sydel Silverman. Once Discipline, Four Ways: British, German, French, and American Anthropology. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005.
Kuklick, Henrika. A New History of Anthropology. Oxford: Blackwell, 2007.
Levi-Strauss, Claude. The Savage Mind. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1966.
McGee, R. Jon and Richard Warms. Anthropological Theory: An Introductory History. Mountain View, Calif: Mayfield Pub. Co, 1996.
Mead, Margaret. Sex and Temperament in Three Primitive Societies. London: Routledge & K. Paul 1948.
Stocking, George W. Jr. Victorian Anthropology. London Collier Macmillan, 1987.

ANT 302: Contemporary Issues in Anthropological Theory

This course will examine some of the major theoretical and methodological concerns of contemporary Social-Cultural Anthropology. The course will begin in the 1960s and will examine key theoretical trends. The readings will probe the Historical roots and philosophical foundations of particular perspectives. Students will be asked to think about the "newness" of current approaches, or to assess whether they are extensions and reformulations of preceding theoretical legacies. The course will constantly draw attention to the interplay between theory and ethnography: evaluating philosophical coherence of theories as well as their empirical adequacy. Last, but not least, the course will take on the vexed concept of culture, asking the students to assess its role and validity in Anthropology today. The course is mandatory for students with Anthropology major. Students are required to have already taken ANT 301 before enrolling for this course.


  • Interpretive Anthropology
  • Symbolic and Interpretive Anthropology: From Structure to Meaning/From Structure to Process 
  • Structuralism and Post-structuralism
  • Marxism, Power and Resistance
  • Post Modernism 
  • Gender and Feminism 
  • The "Writing Culture" Critique: Subjectivity, Reflexivity 
  • Theorizing the Contemporary Moment: State, Globality, and Neoliberalism

Suggested Texts and References:
Abu-Lughod, Lila. Writing Women's Worlds: Bedouin Stories. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993.
Appadurai, Arjun. Modernity at Large: Cultural Dimensions of Globalization. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1986.
Bourdieu, Pierre. Outline of a Theory of Practice. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, 1977.
Clifford, James, and George E. Marcus. Writing Culture : The Poetics and Politics of Ethnography : A School of American Research Advanced Seminar. Berkeley: University of California Press 1986.
Geertz, Clifford. The Interpretation of Cultures. S.I: Fontana Press, 1993.
Hughes, Nancy Scheper. Death without Weeping: The Violence of Everyday Life in Brazil. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1992.
Knauft, Bruce. Genealogies for the Present in Cultural Anthropology. New York Routledge, 1996.
Mahmood, Saba. Politics of Piety: The Islamic Revival and the Feminist Subject. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2005.
Ortner, Sherry B. Anthropology and Social Theory: Culture, Power, and the Acting Subject. Durham: Duke University Press, 2006.
Sahlins, Marshall. Historical Metaphors and Mythical Structure in the Early History of the Sandwich Islands Kingdom. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1981.

ANT 320: Politics, Domination and Society

This course examines the Anthropological perspective on politics and power as understood for both non-state as well as state societies. After delineating the historical changes in the Anthropological study of politics and societies, the course turns its attention to the implications of Anthropologists' recognition of the concepts of power and domination in connection with colonialism and global capitalism. In that connection the course considers the ways in which Anthropologists have rethought the concept of power, influenced by transformations in the societies they study, changes in the global political economy, and ideas from thinkers outside the field of Anthropology. In doing so, it examines both "formal" politics and everyday forms of power, domination and resistance.


  • Comparing Political Systems
  • The Workings of Power
  • Power and Political Economy
  • Language and Symbolic Power
  • Techniques of Power
  • Domination, Hegemony, Discourse and Resistance
  • Actors and Strategies
  • Politics and Power in an Age of Globalization: Transnational Politics
  • The Politics of Identity

Suggested Texts and References:
Guha, Ranajit, and Gaytri Spivak. Selected Subaltern Studies. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988.
Foucault, Michel. Discipline and Punish: The Birth of Prison. Translated by Alan Sheridian. New York: Vintage, 1977.
Schatz, Edward. Political Ethnography: What Immersion Contributes to the Study of Power. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2009.
Mills, David. Difficult Folk? A Political History of Social Anthropology. Oxford: Berghanan Books, 2010.
Butler, Judith. The Psychic Life of Power: Theories in Subjection. Palo Alto, CA: Stanford University Press, 1997.
Scott, David, and Charles Hirshkind. Powers of the Secular Modern: Talal Asad and his Interlocutors. Palo Alto, CA: Stanford University Press, 2006.

ANT 321: Economy and Society

Economic Anthropology challenges the assumptions of conventional economics by analyzing Economic behavior from a cross-cultural perspective. The course begins by asking "what is economic Anthropology?" It then moves to the formalist-substantivist debate. The various topics such as production, money, exchange, labor, etc that are undertaken will be considered in light of the formalist-substantivist debate ranging cross cultural ethnographic cases. Upon completion of this course students will be able (a) to understand how people's economic lives are shaped in the wider cultural context; (b) to understand how notions of value are generated, and how people compare the worth of two dissimilar things? (c) to understand how, in economic life, individuals and groups relate to one another and (d) to think through notions around wealth and poverty.


  • Economic Lives of People across a Variety of Cultures
  • Social and Political Economy
  • Economics and Morality
  • Gifts and Exchange
  • Property, Marriage Transactions
  • Labor and Production, Commodities and Consumption
  • Fair Trade, Concepts of Land and Mortgage
  • Critical Examination of Neo-classical, Substantivist, Marxist and Neo-Marxist approaches in Anthropology

Suggested Texts and References:
Plattner, Stuart. Economic Anthropology. Stanford University Press, 1989.
Wilk, Richard and Lisa Cliggett. Economies and Cultures: Foundations of Economic Anthropology. Westview Press, 2007.
Hart, Keith and Chris Hann. Market and Society: The Great Transformation Today. Cambridge University Press, 2011.
Polanyi, Karl. 'The Economy as Instituted Process', in K. Polanyi, C.W. Arensberg, and H.W.
Pearson (ed.) Trade and Market in the Early Empires (New york: Free Press, 1957.
Dale, Gareth. Karl Polanyi: The Limits of the Market (Key Contemporary Thinkers). Polity Press, 2010.
Sahlins, Marshall. Stone Age Economics. New York: Aldine de Gruyter, 1972.
Mauss, Marcel.The Gift: The Form and Reason for Exchange in Archaic Societies. New York: W. W. Norton, 1990.
Appadurai, Arjun. The Social Life of Things: Commodities in Cultural Perspective. University of Pennsylvania Press, 1986.
Weiner, Annette B. The Trobrianders of Papua New Guinea. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Publishers, 1993.
Parry, J., Maurice Bloch. Money and the Morality of Exchange. Cambridge University Press, 1989.
Meillasoux, C. Maidens, Meals and Money: Capitalism and the Domestic Community. Cambridge University Press, 1981.
Neale, Walter, C. Monies in Societies. San Francisco: Chandler and Sharp Publishers, 1975.
Graeber, David. Towards an Anthropological Theory of Value: The False Coin of Our Own Dreams. Palgrave, 2001.
Sen, Amartya. Commodities and Capabilities. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999.

ANT 330: Anthropology of Development

This course will begin by providing an introduction to the key theories of development as well as a profile of the developing world, as much of it emerged out of its colonial history. It will then focus on development practices favored by different political regimes and mandates, critically examining the extent to which promises have been delivered, and why certain visions of development along with particular initiatives failed. To this end, the course will look at different approaches to development and assess the degree to which they have addressed inequities- economic, social and that of justice. The course will then be a critical exploration of theories, practices, leading to the ultimate question of: what is development? Which voices authorize the development process and what happens to power structures and relations as a result?


  • Concept of Development
  • Theories of Development: Modernization, Dependency theory, World System, Neo-Marxists theories.
  • Implications of Development in the Third World
  • Ethnocentric Bias in Development Theory and Research
  • Globalization: Theorizing Bangladesh's Place in Globalization, Limits and Possibilities of Globalization, Global Integration of the Bangladesh Garments Industry.
  • Global Governance: Promises of the World Bank and IMF, Liberalization and Structural Adjustments. Broken Promises from the Third World Perspective, Position of Bangladesh in Negotiating with WB/IMF.
  • Gender Inequality and Development: Theories of Gender Inequality, Relationship between Gender Inequality and Development, Concerns for Bangladesh.
  • State and Development: Nature of the postcolonial state, Debate over the weak state in Bangladesh.
  • Development Oriented Projects: Phulbari Coal Mine Project, Controversy over other Natural Resources in Bangladesh.

Suggested Texts and References:
Escobar, Arturo. Encountering Development: The Making and Unmaking of the Third World. Princeton: Princeton University press, 2001.
Ferguson, James. Global Shadows:Africa in the Neoliberal World Order. Duke: Duke University Press, 2006.
McMichael, Philip D. Development and Social Change: A Global Perspective. London: Pine Forge press, 2002.
Harris, Graham. The Sociology of Development. New York: Longman Inc, 1992.
Webster, Andrew. Introduction to the Sociology of Development. London: Macmillan Education Ltd. 1990.
Stiglitz, Joseph. Globalization and its Discontents. New York: Norton company, 2001.
Cohen, Robin and Kennedy, Paul. Global Sociology. New York: New York University Press, 2000.
Frank, Andre Gundar. Capitalism and the Underdevelopment in Latin America. Monthly Review Ppress, 1967.
Rahnema, Majid and Victoria Bawtree. The Post Development Reader. Zed Books, 1997.

ANT 350: Gender and Society

This course explores some of the main areas of inquiry in the Anthropological study of gender and sexuality. The course begins by examining the historical development of Anthropological theories of gender, from pre-feminist to the post-modern era. It then looks at women's and men's experiences from a comparative and cross-cultural perspective, drawing attention to the wider societal conditions including class, caste and ethnicity that structure male and female experiences differently within and across cultures. The course urges students to think about the extent to which gendered practices are structured, and the degree to which men and women are able to act autonomously. As a part of this analytical exploration, the course focuses on the "universality" of subordination and the division of labor, bodies, heteronormativity, homosexuality and transsexuality. Ethnographic material from different parts of the world will be used, with a special emphasis on South Asia and Bangladesh.


  • Concept and Theme,The Sex/Gender/Sexuality Distinction 
  • Gender and Sexuality as Identity, Becoming Male or Female: Masculinity and Femininity, Transgenders, Social Construction, Performance, and the Body. 
  • Feminism, Anthropology, and Gender Framing the Questions: The Roots of Gender Subordination, Cross-cultural Perspective on Women's lives
  • Marriage and Motherhood Production/Reproduction: Family, Household, Reproductive Sex, Contraception and Abortion 
  • Religious Resources and the Gendered Organization of Knowledge
  • Gender, Race, and Class.
  • Gender, State, and Nation
  • Considering the Possibilities of Feminist Practice, Gender Issues in South Asia Gender Issues in Bangladesh
  • Reconsidering Feminist Practice in the Study of Women and Culture: Can There Be a Feminist Ethnography?

Suggested Texts and References:
Ahmed, Rahnuma. "Women's Awakening: The Construction of Modern Gender Difference in Bengali Muslim Society." In Contemporary Anthropology, edited by Ainoon Nahar, Manosh Chowdhury and S. M. Nurul Alam. Dhaka: Department of Anthropology, Jahanirnagar University Publications, 1999.
Ahmed, Rahnuma, and Manosh Chowdhury. " Lingo, Sreni Abong Onubader Khomota: Bangali Musolman Modhdhobitto Poribar o Biye (Gender, Class and Power of Translation: Bengali Muslim Middle Class Family and Marriage)." In Kortar Shongshar (Master's House), edited by Sadiya Gulrukh and Manosh Chowdhury. Dhaka: Rupantor Prokashona, 2000. Ahmed, Rahnuma, and Manosh Chowdhury, 2000.
Borthwick, Meredith. The Changing Role of Women in Bengal 1849-1905. New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1984.
Jackson Stevi. (eds). Women's studies: Essential Reading. NY: New York University Press. 1993.
Moore, Henrietta,L. Feminism and Anthropology. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1988. Standing, Hilary. Dependence and Autonomy: Women's Employment and the Family in Calcutta. UK: Routledge, 1991.
Tong, Rosmarie. Feminist Thought: A Comprehensive Introduction. London: Routledge, 1995.
White, Sarah. Arguing with Crocodile. Dhaka: The University Press Limited, 1992.

ANT 370: Kinship, Marriage and Family in Everyday Life

Kinship, Marriage and Family has long formed the core of Social/Cultural Anthropology. Early Anthropologists had a tendency to categorize various 'natives' according to their kinship terminology, marriage patterns and organization of families. These conceptualizations went out of fashion in Anthropology during the 1970's and the 1980's for their narrow focus and specificities. But kinship, marriage and family remained the primary concern for most societies in the world, serving as key sites for an understanding of connections and social reproduction. Hence, this course will familiarize the students with existing discourses on kinship, family and marriages. This course will equip students to study alliances, reorganization and transactions taking place within the kin networks. Finally, this will enable students to have an overview of canonical Anthropological approaches, as well as contemporary accounts of kinship exploring new forms of familial relations.


  • Introduction to the Study of kinship
  • Definition and Key Concepts of Kinship: Biological and Social Construction, Significance of Kinship Study, Incest Taboo, Marriage, Family, Descent, Lineage, Clan, Phratry, Moeity, Kinship Terminology
  • Gender and Kinship, Kinship and Politics, Kinship and Memory
  • Marriage:Preferential and Prescribed Rules of Marriage,Cross-cousin, Parallel Cousin Marriage, Polygamy-polyandry and Polygyny, Monogamy, Exogamy, Endogamy and Marriage Allliance
  • Marriage Transactions: Dowry, Bride Wealth/Price, Post Marital Residence: Uxorilocal, Virilocal, Ambilocal, Neolocal, Class, Economics, and Marriage
  • Family, Household and Domestic Group: Origin of Family, Various Forms of Family: Nuclear, Joint, Extended, Single, Gender roles within Family, Household Organization, Sentiment, and Substance. 
  • Kinship in Bangladesh

Suggested Texts and References:
Bourdieu, Pierre. Outline of a Theory of Practice. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, 1977.
Carsten, Janet. After Kinshi. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004.
Fox, Robin. Kinship and Marriage, Cambridge Studies in Social Anthropology. Cambridge: Cambridge Press 1983.
Collier, J. F , Yanagisako, S. J. ed. Gender and Kinship: Essays Toward a Unified Analysis. California: Stanford University Press, 1992: pp: 1-52.
Engles, F The Origin of the Family, Property and the State. Moscow: Foreign Language Publishing. 1972 [1891]
Goody, J and Tambiah, S.T. Bride wealth and Dowry. Cambridge University Press,1973.
Harris, o 'Households as Natural Units In Wolkwitz', Young and McCormack. eds Of Marriage and the Market. London, 1981.
Parkin, Robert, and Linda Stone. Kinship and Family: An Anthropological Reader. Oxford: Blackwell, 2004.
Peletz, Michael G. "Kinship Studies in Late Twentieth-Century Anthropology." Annual Review of Anthropology Vol.24, pp. 343-72, 1995.
Rapp, Rayna 'Toward a Nuclear Freeze? The Gender Politics of Euro-American Kinship Analysis' In Collier, J. F , Yanagisako, S. J ed Gender and Kinship: Essays Toward a Unified Analysis. California: Stanford University Press, 1992. pp: 119-131.
Read, Dwight W. "Kinship Theory: A Paradigm Shift." Ethnology 46 (2007): 329-64.
White, Sarah. Arguing with Crocodile. Dhaka: The University Press Limited, 1992.
Rozario, Santi, Purity and Communal Boundaries: Women and Social Change in a Bangladeshi Village. Dhaka: The University Press Limited. 2001.
Scheper-Hughes, Nancy "Mother's Love: Death without Weeping," Conformity and Conflict, pp. 217-226.
Sharma, Ursula. Dowry in North India: Its Consequences for Women in Uberoi, Patricia [ed] Family, Kinship and Marriage. New Delhi: Oxford University, 1999.
Stack, Carol. B All Our Kin: Strategies for Survival in a Black Community. New York and London: Harper and Row Publishers, Pp: 62-107.1974.
Standing, Hilary. Dependence and Autonomy: Women's Employment and the Family. UK: Routledge 199.
Stone, Linda, eds. New Directions in Anthropological Kinship. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.,pp7, 8, 13, 2001.
Whitehead, A. "I am hungry mum" In Of Marriage and the Market. London : Routledge, 1981.

ANT 375: Reading Ethnography: Understanding the Anthropological Method

Ethnography is the proof of an Anthropologists' rigor in methods. This course orients students to Anthropological methods through a direct exploration of ethnographies. It highlights the critical transformations in practices of fieldwork and representation that characterize Anthropology's foray in methods. In addition to highlighting the different approaches informed by different theoretical positions, the course will examine different ways of representing others and the related precarious position of the ethnographer. Thus, the course will acquaint students with both process (methodologies) and product (Ethnography) of Socio-Cultural Anthropology, engaging with the emergent discourse on 'native', feminist, global and multi-sited ethnographies. Finally, by familiarizing students with various technique of research, the course will enable them to assess the substantialization of claims and help them to formulate their own research.


  • Introduction to Ethnography and its Disciplinary boundaries 
  • Historical Trajectory: From Armchair Theorising to Empirical work 
  • British Functionalism in Anthropology and Malinowski's Contribution 
  • American Anthropology and Franz Boas, Mead and Freeman Controversy, Ethnographic Authority: Re-studies 
  • Native' Ethnography, Auto-Ethnography, Agency and Politics of Representation
  • Global, Transnational Ethnography, Multi-sited Ethnography
  • Is 'Ethnography' Unique and Distinct?
  • What are the Limits of Ethnography?

Suggested Texts and References:
Abu-Lughod, Lila. Writing Women's Worlds: Bedouin Stories. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993.
Bourdieu, Pierre. Outline of a Theory of Practice. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, 1977.
Clifford, James, and George E. Marcus. Writing Culture : The Poetics and Politics of Ethnography : A School of American Research Advanced Seminar. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1986.
Clough, Patricia Ticineto. The End(S) of Ethnography : From Realism to Social Criticism. Newbury Park: Sage Publications, 1992.
Crapanzano, Vincent. "On the Writing of Ethnography" Dialectical Anthropology, no. 2 69-73, 1972.
Denzin, Norman. Interpretive Ethnography: Ethnographic Practices for the 21st Century. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 1996.
Driesssen, Henk. The Politics of Ethnographic Reading and Writing: Confrontations of Western and Indigenous Views. Fort Lauderdale: Verlag Breitenbach, 1993.
Enslin, E. 'Beyond Writing: Feminist Practice and the Limitations of Ethnography.' " Cultural Anthropology 4, no. 9: 537-68, 1994.
Geertz, Clifford. The Interpretation of Cultures. S.I: Fontana Press, 1993.
Hughes, Nancy Scheper. Death without Weeping: The Violence of Everyday Life in Brazil Berkeley: University of California Press, 1992.
Roy, Beth. Some Trouble with Cows: Making Sense of Social Conflict. New Delhi: Vistaar Publications, 1996.

ANT 376: Research Methodology

This course will examine the logic of inquiry and the necessity for an empirical approach to a rigorous investigation in Anthropology in particular and the social sciences in general. The process of formulating appropriate research questions and hypotheses, techniques for testing relationships and patterns among variables, methods of data collection, methods to assess and improve the validity and reliability of data and measures, and the ethics of scientific inquiry will be addressed. This course will help students understand practice through the critical examination of methods associated with decision-making, critical thinking, and ethical judgment. Upon completion of the course, students will be able to: (a) frame research questions and develop problem statements that reflect assessment, implementation, monitoring, and outcome issues; (b) select research designs, methodologies, and measurement strategies used in social science research; (c)apply research concepts and principles in the development and use of quantitative methodologies and analytical approaches.


  • Nature and Characteristics of Science: Sociology as a Science; Sociology and Social Reality; Problems of Objectivity in Sociology; Question of Values in Sociology; Sociology and Code of Ethics; Reliability & Validity of Social Data.
  • Types of Research: Pure, Applied, Action, Operational, Evaluation- Monitoring
  • Research Steps and design: Define the Problem, Literature Review, Construction of Hypotheses, Methods, Conclusion.
  • Research Method and Techniques: Observation, Survey, Case Study, Content Analysis, Historical, Philosophical, Experimental, Exploratory.
  • Research Instruments: Interview Guide, Interview Schedule; Sampling: Probability and non-probability sampling; sample size calculations; data collection procedures & Observation: Participation, Interviews, Questionnaire.
  • Data Measurement in Scales- Nominal, Ordinal, Interval, Ratio; Preparation of Data for analysis: editing and coding, data analysis
  • Research ethics
  • Writing research Report
  • Social Research Lab: SPSS, Stata, Endnote, Nvivo.

Suggested Texts and References:
Singleton, Royce and Bruce Straits. Approaches to Social Research. New York: Oxford University press, 2005.
Young, Pauline Vislick and Calvin Fisher. Scientific Social Surveys and Research 3rd Edition. Prentice-Hall, 1963.
Philips, Bernard S. Sociological Research Methods: An Introduction. Homewood, Ill.: Dorsey Press, 1985.
Moser, Claus Adolf and Graham Kalton. Survey Methods in Social Investigation. London; Melbourne : Heinemann Educational, 1979.
Babbie, Earl Robert. The Practice of Social Research 10th Edition. Belmont, Calif. ; London : Thomson/Wadsworth, 2001.
Baker, Therese L. Doing Social Research. 3rd Edition. Boston: McGraw-Hill College, 1999.
May, Tim. Social Research: Issues, Methods and Process. Buckingham UK; Philadelphia: Open University Press, 2001.

ANT 408: South Asian Society and Culture

This course introduces students to key themes and debates in the Anthropological literature on South Asia. The study of "traditional" Anthropological topics such as kinship, caste and hierarchy will be folded into ethnographies that explore nationalism, globalization, politicized religion, gender/sexuality, and other sites of socio-political contestation in contemporary South Asia. The course will emphasize the postcolonial implications of colonial knowledge formations, the politics of representation, and the enduring power of analytical and classificatory regimes. Students will also gain familiarity with current theoretical debates in Anthropology as a whole.


  • South Asia as a Geographical Entity
  • The Colonial Experience, Shared History and Divergent Trajectories
  • Emerging Nations, Fraught Secularisms and Politicized Religions
  • Caste, Class and Gender
  • Inter-nation Affinities and Tensions
  • Representing South Asia: The Primacy of and Politics behind Categories

Suggested Texts and Readings:
Bernard, S. Cohn. Colonialism and Its Forms of Knowledge. Princeton 1996.
Gupta, Charu. Sexuality, Obscenity, And Community: Women, Muslims, and the Hindu Public in Colonial India. Palgrave Macmillan, 2002.
Goodwin, Raheja Gloria. "The Erasure of Everyday Life in Colonial Ethnography" pp. 199-213.
In Vazira Zamindar "The Long Partition and the Making of Modern South Asia: Refugees, Boundaries, Histories". Columbia University Press, 2010.
Pradeep Jeganathan and Qadri Ismail (eds.) Unmaking the Nation: The Politics of Identity & History in Modern Sri Lanka. SSA, 2009.
Madan, TN (ed.) Muslim Communities of South Asia: Culture, Society, and Power. Manohar, 2001.
Ahmed, Imtiaz and Helmut Reifeld. Lived Islam in South Asia: Adaptation, Accommodation and Conflict. Social Science Press, 2004.
Kamala Visweswaran (ed.). Perspectives on Modern South Asia: A Reader in Culture, History, and Representation. 2011.
Spence, Jonathan r, Anthropology, Politics, and the State: Democracy and Violence in South Asia (New Departures in Anthropology), 2007.
Gardner, Katy. The Discordant Development: Global Capitalism and the Struggle for Connection in Bangladesh,. Pluto Press, 2012.
Ahearn, Laura. Invitations to Love: Literacy, Love Letters, and Social Change in Nepal. 2001.
Mankeka, Purnima r. Screening Culture, Viewing Politics: An Ethnography of Television, Womanhood and Nation in Postcolonial India. Duke University Press, 1999.
Iqtidar, Humeira. Secularizing Islamists? Jama'at-e-Islami and Jama'at-ud-Da'wa in Urban Pakistan (South Asia Across the Disciplines) University of Chicago, 2011.
Das, Veena. Critical Events: An Anthropological Perspective on Contemporary India.
Katherine, Pratt Ewing. Arguing Sainthood: Modernity, Psychoanalysis, and Islam. Duke University Press Book, 1997.
Rosario, Santi. Purity and Communal Boundaries: Women and Social Change in a Bangladeshi Village, Zed Press, 1992.

ANT 420: Religion and Society

Questions of religion have interested Anthropologists since the very early days of the discipline. While the ambivalence of the early as well as later Anthropologists have led to an "explaining away" of religion, recent scholarship and debates have brought issues of faith, embodiment, etc into the fore. Thus the Anthropology of religion emerges, in its current state, out of tensions from a vibrant field of theoretical enquiry accompanied by rich ethnographies from around the world. The course will explore the debates and contestations that go into the "universal" dimension of the human experience called "religion." Upon completion of the course, students will be able (a) to have advanced knowledge in key concepts and theoretical debates that shaped the Anthropological study of religion and learn to critically assess them; (b) to be able to analyze contemporary religious phenomena by drawing on available scholarship and developing their own arguments on the matter; (c) to realize the breadth and scope of Anthropological engagement with religion and (d) to develop and interdisciplinary and comparative perspective on religious phenomena.


  • Key themes in the study of religion: magic, belief, symbols, tradition and transmission, ritual, morality, healing, spirit possession, proselytizing, conversion and secularism.
  • Theoretical debates and core analytical categories in Anthropology
  • Ethnographic accounts from regions ranging from South Asia to Papua New Guinea, Africa, Middle East and Europe and North America.
  • World religions, their historical emergence and the tensions between religious orthodoxies and charismatic authority that frame the contemporary manifestations of many of these world religions
  • Shift from local processes to global movements, observing the religious-secular dynamic in concrete contexts

Suggested Texts and References:
Lambek, M. ed. A Reader in the Anthropology of Religion. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 2006.
Morris, B. Anthropological Studies of Religion: An Introductory Text. Cambridge: CUP, 1987.
Antes, P., A.W. Geertz, et al. New Approaches to the Study of Religion. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter, 2004.
Asad, Talal. Genealogies of Religion: Discipline and Reasons of Power in Christianity and Islam. Johns Hopkins University Press, 1993.
Asad, Talal. Formations of the Secular: Christianity, Islam, Modernity. Stanford University Press, 2003.
Bowie, F. Anthropology of Religion: An Introduction. Oxford: Blackwell, 2006.
Eaton, R. The Rise of Islam and the Bengal Frontier, 1204-1760. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993.
Lambek M. A Reader in the Anthropology of Religion. Oxford and Malden: Blackwell, 2002.
Comaroff, Jean., John Comaroff. Modernity and its Malcontents: Ritual and Power in postcolonial Africa. The University of Chicago Press, 1993.
Douglas, Mary. Natural Symbols: Explorations in Cosmology. Routledge,1996.
Obeseykere, Ganneth. Medusa's Hair: an essay on personal symbols and religious experience. The University of Chicago Press, 1981.
Mahmood, Saba. The politics of Piety: The Islamic Revival and the Feminist Subject. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2004

Description: Elective Courses

ANT 105: Introduction to Sociology

Sociology is one of the younger but intellectually rich analytical social sciences. The field of Sociology consists of social relations, network, family, club, group, marriage, cultures and so on of modern societies and numerous rules and procedures that govern these societies. This is an introductory course in sociology which familiarizes students with key concepts of sociology and different theoretical perspectives within the discipline. The objective of the course is to develop creative thinking ability of the students about the society in which they live and also social processes that shape lives.


  • Origin and Development of Sociology: Sociological Imagination, Sociology and other Social Sciences, Contributions of Classical Sociologists, Major Sociological Perspectives - Functionalism, Conflict and Interactionism.
  • Social Research: Nature of Social Research, Research Design and Ethics of Research.
  • Culture: Culture and civilization, Material and Non-material Culture, Sub-culture, Cultural shock, Counter-Culture, Elements of Culture: Language, Norms, Sanctions and Values, Globalization and Culture.
  • Socialization: The Concept of Socialization: Debate on Nature versus Nurture, Role of Socialization, Socialization and the Life Cycle, Sociobiology as an Emerging Field of Sociology and Debates, Agents of Socialization, Theories of Socialization: Cooley, Herbert Mead and Goffman.
  • Social Institutions: Marriage and Family, Religion: The sociological Approach to Religion, Economy: Globalization and Impact of Globalization on Bangladesh, Politics: Power and Authority
  • Social Change: Theories, Change, Progress, and Evolution
  • Deviant Behavior: Crime, Violence, Substance Abuse.
  • Social Stratification: The Concept of Stratification: Stratification in the World System, Systems of Stratification- Class, Caste, Estates and Slavery, Social Mobility, Types of Social mobility, Theories of Stratification - Marx, Weber, Stratification by Gender, Gender Inequality from Global Perspective, Social Stratification in Bangladesh.
  • Environment and Society: Human Ecology, Environmental Justice, Environmental Problems, Climate Change.
  • Population and Society: The Population Debate, Theories of Population - Malthus. Durkheim and Marx, Demographic Transition Model, Globalization and Migration.
  • Health and Society: Socio-biology, Health Care

Suggested Texts and References:
Witt, John.SOC. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2009.
Schaefer, Richard. Sociology. New York: McGraw-Hill Company, 2007.
Giddens, Anthony, Mitchell Duneier and Richard Appelbaum. Essentials of Sociology. W.W. Norton & Company, 2005.
Plummer, Ken and John Macionis. Sociology: A Global Introduction. London: Pearson Pentice Hall, 2002.
Newman, David. Sociology: Exploring the architecture of everyday life. California: Pine Forge Press, 2002.

ANT 201: Anthropology of Corporate Culture

This course focuses on the anthropological study of organizations and the use of 'Organizational Culture' at the corporate level. It aims to inculcate in the student a critical understanding of Organizational Culture by examining the origin, development and consequences of corporate culture as an outcome of globalization. This course will empower students to organize information, symbols, and people in ways that influence planning, evaluation, policies, and resource allocations in a corporate world.


  • The Nature and Definition of Organizations: Organization in Historical Perspectives, Organization in Pre- capitalist Societies, Industrialism and Organizations. 
  • Formal Organization and Bureaucracy: Nature and Characteristics of Bureaucracy, Work Redesign and the Limits of Tylorism and Fordism, The Anthropology of Power-Wielding Bureaucracies.
  • Nature of Corporate Culture: Theories of Culture and its Relevance to Corporate World; Elements of Culture, Cultural Models of Hofstede, Denison, Schein.
  • Development of Corporate Culture: Impact of Globalization and Multinational Corporations.
  • Decision-making process in Organization Resources: Power, Authority and Organizational Goals, Communication and the Process of Decision-making, Control and Autonomy. 
  • Patterns of Interactions; Organizational Roles; Role Conformity and Performance; Non-compliance of Roles; Types ofCconflict; Strategies of Conflict management. 
  • Changing Organizational Culture: Cultural Diffusion, Adaptation to the Changing Organizational Culture, Resistance to Change
  • Recent Trend of Corporate Culture in Bangladesh: Origin, Development and Effect on Home Culture
  • Social Life and Corporate Culture: Consequences of Corporate Culture in Social Life, Case study on 'Life in Call Centre'

Suggested Texts and References:
Jay M. Shafritz, J. Steven Ott, and Yong Suk Jang. Classics of Organization Theory, Sixth Edition. Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth, 2005.
Jordan, Ann. Business Anthropology. Long Grove, IL: Waveland Press, 2003.
Javidan et al. In the Eye of the Beholder: Cross Cultural Lessons in Leadership from Project GLOBE. Academy of Management Perspectives, 20(1): 67-90, 2007.
Kotter, J. Leading Change. Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 1996.
Martin, J. Organizational Culture: Mapping the Terrain. Thousand Oak CA: Sage, 2002.
Schein, E. The Corporate Culture Survival Guide. San Francisco: Jossey Bass, 1999.
Schein, E. Culture: The Missing Concept in Organization Studies. Administrative Science Quarterly, 41(2):pp. 229-240, 1996.
Trice, H. & Beyer, J. The Cultures of Work Organizations Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1993.

ANT 310: Population and Society

The course aims at a better understanding of how population structure and processes such as fertility, mortality and migration affect society and are, in turn, affected by changes in social structures and processes. After successful completion of the course, students would be able to identify the main trends in population change in the world from historical perspectives; apply the basic concepts and theories of demography to explain population structures and processes in global, regional and national contexts and engage in a critical discussion of the main theoretical debates around population, society and development, and thus develop their own demographic perspectives.


  • Introduction to Population Studies: Population Studies and Demography, The importance of studying population. Early Thoughts On Population
  • Basic Concepts of Demography: Age-Sex structure, Population Pyramid, Sex Ratio, Dependent Population, Fertility, Mortality, Migration; Sources of Demographic Data: Census, Vital Statistics, Sample Survey, Historical Data, Official Documents etc. Global Population trends: Regional and Historical Perspectives
  • The Population Debate: Malthus, Critiques of Malthus and neo-Malthusians, Marxist Perspectives and Critiques of the Marxist perspectives; Demographic transition: Prelude to the Transition (Mills, Dumont and Durkheim), The Theory of Demographic Transition and Critiques.
  • Basic Measures of the Demographic Processes: Measures of Fertility, Mortality and Migration, Determinants of Fertility. Biological and Social Explanations of Fertility, Fertility Differentials, Determinants of Mortality. The Aging Population. Who is a Migrant? Theories of Migration (Ravenstein's Laws of Migration, Ecological and Decision-making Theories), Immigration, Forced Migration, Refugees, Remittances. 
  • Population Structure and Characteristics: The Age Transition - Drivers of Age Transition, Age Transition at work and Demographic Dividends; The urban transition- Drivers of urban transition, determinants of the urban transition, Urban Crowding, Slums, Urban Environment; The Family and Household Transitions - Determinants of the Transitions. Changing Life Chances (Education and Labour Force Participation) and the Family Transition. 
  • Population and Economic Development: Debates on the Relationships between Economic Growth, Population and Development.
  • Population and Environment: Environmental Degradation, Pollution and Population, Climate Change and Population. 
  • Population Conferences: The United Nations Population Conferences (Bucharest, Mexico, Cairo and post-Cairo) 
  • Population Policies: The Future of Population Growth and Population Policies; The Population Policy of Bangladesh. Reproductive Health and Rights

Suggested Texts and References:
Weeks, John R. Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues. California: Wadsworth Publishing, 2011.
Daugherty, H.G. and Kammeyer, K.C.W. An Introduction to Population. New York: The Guilford Press, 1995.
Hutchinson, E. P. The Population Debate: The Development of Conflicting Theories up to 1900. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1967.
McFalls, J.A.Jr. Population: A Lively Introduction. Population Bulletin, 62 (1), 2007.

ANT 311: Social Movements

This course will examine movements that seek change in the social and political structure of society. By utilizing Anthropological and other concepts from the social sciences, the course will examine the characteristics and trajectories of different types of social movements. Social movements will be understood both in their historical and contemporary contexts. Case studies from both international and national arenas will be explored. After completion of the course students will be able (a) to utilize the key concepts of Anthropological theories toward explaining the findings from the most important social movement studies; (b) to evaluate the nature of the different types of social movements; (c) to predict possible outcomes of contemporary movements based on their characteristics and trajectories; (d) to compare and contrast the roles that structural, cultural, and leadership aspects play in social movements.


  • Theories of Social Movements.
  • Social Movement and Pre-Modernity
  • Emergence of Modern Social Movements- Marxism, Anarchism, Feminism.
  • Social Movements, Colonialism, and Anti-Colonialism.
  • Contemporary Labor Movements.
  • Radical Democracy- Post-Marxism, Post-Feminism, Post-Anarchism.
  • Social Movements, Subaltern Studies and Postcoloniality.
  • Identity Politics.
  • Ecological Movements.
  • Social Movements in Bangladesh.

Suggested Texts and References:
Snow, David A., and Sarah Anne Soule. A Primer of Social Movements. New York: W.W. Norton Company, 2009.
David A. Snow, and Sarah Anne Soule. The Blackwell Companion to Social Movements, Chicester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2004.
Klandermaus, Bert, and Conny Roggeband,eds. Handbook of Social Movements across Disciplines. New York: Springer, 2009.
Johnston, Hank. Culture, Social Movements and Protests. Surrey: Ashgate, 2009.
Bayat, Asef. Making Islam Democratic: Social Movements and the Post-Islamist Turn. Palo Alto: Stanford University Press, 2007.

ANT 325: Theories and Problems of Nationalism

The purpose of this course is to develop an understanding of nationalism and post-nationalism as an anthropological, political, economic, and historical phenomenon. Analyses will be undertaken to make sense of different manifestations of nationalism such as fascism, national liberation struggle in the third world countries, or nationalism as a response to internal colonialism. Post-nationalism as a response to and critique of nationalism will be discussed. The explanatory framework of the course will include a range of theories, including Marxism, feminism, and post-colonialism. Special attention will be paid to the historical emergence and the contemporary state of nationalist narratives in Bangladesh.


  • Elementary Concepts of Nationalism.
  • The Rise of Nationalism in the West.
  • Conservative, Liberal, and Radical Theories of Nationalism.
  • Liberalism Universalism and Nationalism.
  • Fascism.
  • Marxism and Nationalism.
  • Anarchist Critique of Nationalism.
  • Nationalism and Anti-colonial Struggle.
  • Nationalism and Gender.
  • Post-Nationalism: A Critique of Nationalism.
  • Post-Nationalism and Post-Colonialism.
  • The Future of Nationalism: Nationalism and Globalization.

Suggested Texts and References:
Heller, Monica. Paths to Post-Nationalism: A Critical Ethnography of Language and Identity. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011.
Eriksen, Thomas Hylland. Ethnicity and Nationalism: Anthropological Perspectives. London: Pluto Press, 2010.
Anderson, Benedict. The Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism. London: Verso, 1983.
Young, Robert J. C., and Robert Young. Postcolonialism: An Historical Introduction. Oxford and Malden.Blackwell, 2001.
Fanon, Frantz. The Wretched of the Earth. London: Penguin Books, 1985.
Chatterjee, Partha. The Nation and its Fragment: Colonial and Postcolonial Histories. Princeton: Princeton University Press. 1993.
Van de Veer, Peter, and Hartmut Lehman. Nation and Religion: Perspectives on Europe and Asia. Princeton: Princeton University Press. 1999.

ANT 331: Rural Society and Culture

The objective of the course is to acquaint students with the fundamental concepts, principles and research methods involved in the study of rural societies. This course will also assist students in applying these concepts and principles to gain an understanding of rural societal institutions. Lectures and readings are designed to encourage students to examine their assumptions and understanding of the structure and functioning of rural communities, the forces leading to rural social change in general, and Bangladesh in particular and the likely results of these changes for the future. A major objective is to challenge students to critically analyze rural development and the agents involved I this process. Understanding the changing nature of rural society in an increasingly urbanizing and integrated world is a key element of the course.


  • Rural Society: Definition, Scope and Importance, Theoretical Possibilities and Problems in the Study of Rural Societies.
  • Rural Social Structure: Pattern of Rural Class, Land Ownership and Tenancy Relation; Landlessness and Wage Labor Relations.
  • Rural Power Structure: Nature, Rural Elite ,Relationship between Rural Elite and National Power Structure, Kinship Relationship and Rural Power Structure ,Nature and Functions of Village Community(gram samaj).
  • Rural Institutions: Formal and Informal Rural Institutions.
  • Nature of Peasant Society: Definition of Peasantry; Theory and Concepts regarding Peasantry: Organization Production School; Lenin's Model of Peasant Polarization; Shanin's Model of Rural Mobility Patnaik's debate.
  • Rural Development: Definition and Importance of Rural Development; Issues and Strategies of Rural Development.
  • Agricultural Development: Introduction; Adoption and Consequences of New Programs; Technology and Institutions.
  • Agents of Rural Development: Contributions of NGOs – BRAC and Grameen Bank.
  • Social Safety Net Programmes: Rural Poverty, Vulnerability and Governance.

Suggested Texts and References:
Khan, Akbar Ali. Some Aspects of Peasant Behavior in Bangladesh 1890-1914: A New Classical Analysis. Dhaka: Asiatic Society of Bangladesh, 1982.
Alavi, Hamza and Teodor Shanin. Introduction to the Sociology of Developing Societies. London: Macmillan, 1982.
Arens, Jenneke and Jos Van Beurden. Jhagrapur: Poor Peasants and Women in a Village in Bangladesh. Birmingham: Arens and Van Beurden, 1978.
Schendal, Willem Van.Peasant Mobility: The Odds of Iife in Rural Bangladesh. New Jersey: Van Gorcum, 1981.
Arefeen, Helaluddin Khan. Changing Agrarian Structure in Bangladesh: A Study of PeriurbanVillage. Dhaka: Centre for social studies, 1986.
Westergaard, Kirsten. Rural Society, State and Class in Bangladesh: A Study in Relationships. London and Malmo, 1985
Jahargir, Burhanuddin Khan. Differentiation, Polarisation and Confrontation in Rural Bangladesh. Dhaka: Centre for social studies, 1979.
Jansen, Erik, G. Rural Bangladesh: Competition for Scarce Resources. Oxford: Oxford University Press, Norwegian University Press, 1986.
Kearny, M Reconceptualizing Peasentry, 1995.

ANT 335: Urban Society

This course deals with issues of growth and development of urban communities with reference to evolution of cities, urban social institutions and problems, changes and emerging challenges in city life. Upon successful completion of this course, the students will be able to understand the transformation to urban society, differences between pre-industrial and industrial cities and the effects of class, gender and race on urban community. The course will also focus on patters of family, use of power, exercise of economic activity in city life. The students will be able to apply sociological concepts and methods to social problems in contemporary urban society and to social policy analysis.


  • The rise of Urban Sociology: Thoughts of Webber, Simmel, Robert Park, Ernest Burgess, Ferdinand Tonnies, Louis Wirth and the Chicago School.
  • The Origins of Urbanization and the Characteristics of Cities: Ancient Urbanization, Classical Cities, Medieval Cities, Industrial Cities.
  • The Socio-spatial Approach of Urban Sociology: Political Economy of the City, Marx and Engels, Real Estate and Government Intervention, Uneven Development.
  • People and Lifestyles in the Metropolis: Class Differences and Spatial Location, Gender Roles and Spaces, Ethnicity and Immigration.
  • Urbanization in the Third World: Causes, Forms and Consequences of Urbanization in the Third World.
  • Dhaka City: Growth of the City, Culture of the City, History of the City.
  • Slums: Urban Poverty, Migration and Social Integration, Life in a Slum.
  • Urban Social Institutions: Family, Politics, Religion, Economy.
  • Urban Problems: Racism, Crime, Housing, Environment, Slums.
  • Global cities: Identifying Global Cities, Characters of Global Cities, Economic Measures of Global Cities, Culture, Immigration.
  • Climate Change and the City: Endangered Cities of the World.

Suggested Texts and References:
Gottdiener, Mark and Ray Hutchinson. The New Urban Sociology. New York: McGraw Hill, 2000.
Gottdiener, Mark and Leslie Budd. Key Concepts in Urban Studies. London: Sage Publication, 2005.
Gugler, Josef. The Urban Transformation of the Developing World. London: Oxford University Press, 1996.
Gupta, A & Ferguson J eds Culture, Power, Place: Explorations in Critical Anthropology. Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2001.
John Rennie Short. Urban Theory: A Critical Assessment. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2006.
Hossain, Shahadat. UrbanPoverty in Bangladesh: Slum Communities, Migration and Social Integration. London: I.B. Tauris, 2010.
Pirenne, Henry. The Medieval Cities: Their Origins and the Revival of Trade. New York: Doubleday, 1927.
Siddiqui, Kamal. Social Formation in Dhaka City. Dhaka: UPL, 1990.
Stevenson, Deborah. Cities and Urban Cultures. Maidenhead : Open University Press, 2003.
Gold, Hary. Urban Life and Society.Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice Hall, 2002.
Weber; Max. The City. Glencoe, Ill., Free Press, 1958.

ANT 340: Medical Anthropology

This course introduces students to the key concepts and practices in medical Anthropology. The aim is to examine the notions and practices of health, illness, disease, well-being and healing within and across cultures, and, to discuss how these notions and practices represent as well as shape human societies. The course focuses on particular themes including the medicalization of modern life, medical pluralism, biomedicine, traditional healing, political economy of health, doctor-patient relationships, and self-care. Students are introduced to the key figures in Medical Anthropology and the major theoretical approaches in the field. The strengths and weaknesses in each approach are analyzed to demonstrate the ideologies and practices of each system of thinking and doing Medical Anthropology.


  • What is Medical Anthropology: Defining the Boundaries of the Subdiscipline.
  • Basic concepts: Health, Well‐being, Illness and Disease.
  • Key Theoretical Approaches in Medical Anthropology.
  • Biomedicine Examined.
  • Social Determinants of Health.
  • Health, Medicalization and Political Economy.
  • Medicalization and Medical Pluralism.
  • Healers and Patients in Cultural Contexts.
  • Self-care practices.
  • Culture, Psychology and Psychiatry.
  • Medical Anthropology in Practice

Suggested Texts and References:
Helman, Cecil G. Culture, Health and Illness, 5th edition. UK: Hodder Arnold Publications, 2007.
Hardon, A et al. (Eds.), Applied Health Research: Anthropology of Health and Health-care (pp. 2-6). Amsterdam: Het Spinhuis, 2001.
Miner, Horace. Body Ritual among the Nacirema. In S. Nanda (Ed.), Cultural Anthropology (pp. 18-21), Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Company. 1987 (Original work published in 1956).
Hahn, R.A. and M.C. Inhorn (Eds.), Anthropology and Public Health. Bridging Différences in Culture and Society. New York: Oxford University Press, 2009.
S. van der Geest & A. Rienks (eds), The Art of Medical Anthropology Readings. Amsterdam: Het Spinhuis, 1998.
C. Leslie (Eds.), Asian Medical Systems: A Comparative Study. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass Publishers. (First Indian edition).
Zaman, Shahaduz. Poverty, Violence and Inventivity: Life in a Hospital Ward in Bangladesh. Social Science & Medicine, 59 (10), 2025-2036, 2004.
Islam, A., R. Wiltshire (Eds.), Traditional Health Systems and Public Policy. Ottawa: International Development Research Centre, 1994.
Selim, Nasima. (2011). Friendship (and healing) in the 'intersubjectivity of silence': A case illustration.In M. Tankink and M. Vysma, Roads and Boundaries: Travels in Search of (re-connection. Published in the Netherlands.
Brown, P.J (Ed.), Understanding and Applying Medical Anthropology (pp.183-196). CA, USA: Mayfield Publishing Company, 1998.
Kedia, S., J.V. Willigen (Eds.), Applied Anthropology: Domains of Application (pp. 119-143), 2005.

ANT 342: Body and Society

The past several decades have been marked by a growing interest, in the social sciences and humanities, in the body and its role in providing a window to understanding the workings of society, culture and gender. This course will explore the development of theories of the body, from classic times to more recent efforts, considering the ideas of Marcel Mauss, Mary Douglas, Pierre Bourdieu, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Michel Foucault, Nancy Scheper-Hughes, Margaret Lock, Linda Nicholson, and others. We will also explore cross-cultural notions of the body, examining the ways the body is experienced, imagined, expressed and controlled in societies as diverse as the United States,, India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Egypt, North Africa and Brazil.


  • Social Values, Hierarchies and the Body.
  • Bodies and the Expression and Controlling of Identities.
  • The Body: Conceptual Advances in the Social Sciences versus Folk Preoccupation.
  • Body in Feminist Theory.
  • Body, Aging, Illness and Healing

Suggested Texts and References:
Foucault, Michel. Discipline and Punish . Random House, 1977.
Lamb, Sarah. White Saris and Sweet Mangoes: Aging, Gender and Body in North India
University of California Press, 2000.
Boddy, Janice. Wombs and Alien Spirits: Women, Men and the Zar Cult in Northern Sudan
University of Wisconsin Press, 1989.
Sered,Susan. What Makes Women Sick?: Maternity, Modesty, and Militarism in Israeli Society, Brandeis University Press, 2000.
Frank, Gelya. Venus on Wheels: Two Decades of Dialogue on Disability, Biography, and Being Female in America. University of California Press, 2000.
Desjarlais, Robert. Body and Emotion: The Aesthetics of Illness and Healing in the Nepal Himalayas . Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1992.
Kulick, Don. Travesti: Sex, Gender and Culture among Brazilian Transgendered Prostitutes. University of Chicago Press, 1998.
Scheper Hughes, Nancy. Death Without Weeping: The Violence of Everyday Life in Brazil. Bekeley, Los Angeles, Oxford: University of California Press, 1999.
Braidotti, R; The Body in Feminist Theory and Practice, Utrecht University, The Netherlands, 2003.
Martin, Emily; Women in the Body, A Cultural Analysis of Reproduction, Open University Press/Milton Keynes, 1987.
Nanda, Serena; Neither Man nor Woman: The Hijras of India, Belmont: Wadsworth Publ. Co,1990.

ANT 345: Social Networks and Social Capital

Social networks constitute a set of social structural conditions that seem to be omni-present in all social situations. Social networks partly determine the actions of their individual members, and they have been shown to affect many aspects of people's life. The course will introduce students to the basic concepts of the theory of social networks and enable them to conceive of the social structure as a network of individuals. It will also explain the role of social networks in social life by conceiving a person's personal network not only as a restriction for action but also as that person's social capital. In this related discussion of social capital, the most salient perspectives include: the availability of social settings which influence the chance of meeting others; the emergence of networks; network effects on conflicts and occupational attainment; networks within organizations, like government agencies and the institutional conditioning of the effects of networks.


  • Social Networks and Social Network Studies.
  • Social Networks as Social Capital.
  • Investment in Social Capital.
  • Numbers and Places: Meeting Chances and Social Settings.
  • Returns to Social Capital: Occupational Attainment.
  • Returns to Social Capital: Conflict and Cooperation.
  • Institutional Conditioning.
  • Negative Social Capital.
  • Decline of Social Capital.
  • The Turtle Effect.

Suggested Texts and References:
Coleman, James. Social Capital. In Foundations of Social Theory by James Coleman, 300-321. Cambridge, MA: Belknap, 1990.
Granovetter, Mark S. The Strength of Weak Ties. American Journal of Sociology, 78: 1360-1381.
Marsden, P.V. Core Discussion Networks of Americans. American Sociological Review 52: 122-131. 1987.
McAllister, L. and C.S. Fischer A Procedure for Surveying Personal Networks. Sociological Methods and Research 7:131-148. 1978.
Burt, R.S. & N. Celotto The Network Structure of Management Roles in a Large Matrix Firm. Evaluation and Program Planning, 15: 303 326. 1992.
Putnam, R. Tuning In, Tuning Out: the Strange Disappearance of Social Capital in America. Political Science and Politics 28: 664-683. 1995.

ANT 351: Gender and Development

The course will train students to think analytically about gendered experiences, by both men and women as their lives enter the fold of development agendas and initiatives. The course will orient students to the key theories of development, the major theoretical advances made in the conceptualization of gender, and look at ethnographic accounts and case studies that analyze how particular approaches to development have impacted not only improvement in the lives of men and women, but also how these have affected power relations between them. The course will invite a critical questioning of development initiatives and a thinking through of what constitutes development with regard to gender. The course will allow students to think through notions of rights, empowerment, wellbeing and individual versus collective development.


  • Cultural constructions of gender relations and how they require and benefit or fail to benefit from development initiatives.
  • WID, WAD, GAD.
  • Special emphasis on Bangladesh and South Asia, the course looks at different development programs ranging from giving women access to assets to bringing them into the democratization process.
  • Impact on women's status and their socio-economic improvement in society.
  • Sensitive issues related to women's well being, assessing how existing development paradigms approach these issues.
  • Role of the state and debates around directions and outcomes of development.

Suggested Texts and References:
Rahnema, M and V. Bawtree (eds). The Post-Development Reader. Zed Books, 1997.
Sen, Amartya. Development as Freedom. Oxford University Press, 2000.
Agarwal, Bina. A Field of One's Own. Delhi: Cambridge University Press, 1995.
Nussbuam, Martha C. Creating Capabilities: the Human Development Approach. Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2011.
Basu, Amrita (ed.) The Challenge of Local Feminisms. Women's Movements in Global Perspective. Boulder, Westview Press, 1995.
Kabeer, Naila. Reversed Realities: Gender Hierarchies In Development Thought. New Delhi : Kali for women, 1995.
Jones, Adam (ed). Men of the Global South: A Reader. 2006
Parpart, Jane, Shireen rai and Kathleen Staudt. Rethinking Empowerment: Gender and Development in a Global/Local World. Routledge, 2002.
Selected articles from Development and Change , Vol. 37, Issue 6 , November 2006.
Reflections by Carmen Diana Deere, Deniz Kandiyoti, and Kumari Jayawardena,
Debate by Amrita Chhachi, Martha Nussbaum
Visvanathan, N, L. Duggan, L. Nisonoff and Nan Wiegersma. The Women, Gender and Development Reader. Dhaka: University Press Limited, 1997.
Narayan, Deepa.. Measuring Empowerment. DC: The World Bank, 2005.
Neloufer De Mel. Women and the Nation's Narrative, Rowan and Littlefield, 2001.
Momsen, Janet H.. Gender and Development. Routledge, 2004.

ANT 355: Law, Human Rights and Justice: Anthropological Perspectives

This course introduces students to key debates on the relationship between law, culture and society. Where anthropology is committed to exploring the diversity of human experience, law/human rights movements seek recognition of universal norms that transcend political and cultural difference. As a result, "culture" is often cast as the enemy of law and rights. Moving away from such binary formulations, this course brings the tools of critical anthropology to bear on the study of justice and rights, mapping out a more productive relationship between law and anthropology. The course will pay particular attention to tensions generated by debates on cultural relativism versus universalism, especially in relation to human rights and gender justice. Examples and case studies will be drawn from South Asia/Bangladesh wherever possible (such as debates on a Uniform Civil Code for women and on Adibashi rights and national identity). The course will also discuss how anthropology and anthropologists have dealt with human rights issues in the places they have worked and what effects their positions and actions have had on the understanding of the human rights movement in the world today. The course is relevant for students in the law department.


  • Histories of the Law.
  • Indigenous Peoples and European Law.
  • Colonial Encounters in British India.
  • Nation-States, Sovereignty and Human Rights.
  • Postcolonial Citizenship and National Cultures.
  • Minorities and Multiculturalism.
  • Transnationalism, Globalization and Human Rights.
  • Cultural Relativism versus Universalism: Women's Rights.
  • Imperialism and the Invocation of Human Rights.
  • Globalization, Neo-Liberalism and Rights Discourse.
  • Civil Society, INGOs and Rights Discourse.
  • Non-state Actors' Rights Violations.

Suggested Texts and References:
Sally Falk Moore (editor). Law and Anthropology: A Reader. Oxford: Blackwell, 2005.
Sally Merry. Colonizing Hawaii: The Cultural Power of Law. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000.
Mark Goodale (editor). Human Rights: An Anthropological Reader. Oxford: Blackwell, 2009.
Hodgson, Dorothy (editor). Gender and Culture at the Limit of Rights. Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2011.
Goodale, Mark. Surrendering to Utopia: An Anthropology of Human Rights. Palo Alto: Stanford University Press, 2009.
Flavia Agnes. Law and Gender Inequality: The Politics of Women's Rights in India. New York: Oxford University Press, 2001.

ANT 410: Gender and Islam

Muslim women's rights, roles and appearance have found a place at the center of heated debates both within as well as outside the Muslim world. Muslims as well as the western media have made Muslim women emblems of either the asserted virtues or failings of the Islamic tradition. This course examines the complexities underlying the construction, perceptions and consequences of narratives around gender in Islam. Questions that will be addressed are: Why is Islam stereotyped as oppressing women? How do we relate this opinion with the view of many Muslim men and women that Islam preaches true equality between man and woman? How do women use religious symbols such as the veil in order to identify themselves and create freedom of movement? Why do women decide to affiliate themselves with Islamic 'fundamentalist' movements and what consequences does this have for them and their male relatives?


  • Quranic Representation of Muslim Women.
  • Women's Roles and Responsibilities in Muslim Societies Historically.
  • Women's and Gender Roles in Islam as Articulated in Legal Systems. 
  • Portrayal of Muslim Women in Contemporary Popular and Academic Work.
  • Muslim Women's Agency: Taking Charge of Own Lives and Changing Society.
  • The Development of Islamic Feminism, its Successes and Failures.
  • Women and Fundamentalism.
  • Islam and Masculinity.

Suggested Texts and References:
Moore, Henrietta L. Feminism and Anthropology. University of Minnesota Press, 1989.
Haddad, Yvonne Y., John L. Esposito. Islam, Gender, and Social Change. Oxford University Press, 1997.
Hastings, Donnan, C. Interpreting Islam (Politics and Culture Series). Sage Publications, 2002.
Keddie, Nikki., Beth Baron. Women in Middle Eastern History: Shifting Boundaries in Sex and Gender.Yale University Press, 1993.
Ahmed, Leila. Women and Gender in Islam: Historical Roots of a Modern Debate. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1992 .
Mernissi, Fatima. Forgotten Queens of Islam. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.1997.
Stowasser, Barbara F. Women in the Quran: Traditions and Interpretation. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1994.
Wadud, Amina. Inside the Gender Jihad: Women's Reform in Islam. Oxford: Oneworld 2006.
Barlas, Asma. Believing Women in Islam: Unreading Patriarchal Interpretations of the Quran. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2002.
Judith Tucker. 1998. In the House of the Law: Gender and Islamic Law in Ottoman Syria and Palestine. University of California Press, 2000.
John Esposito, John. L., Nantana J. Delong Bas. Women in Muslim Family Law: Contemporary Issues in the Middle East, Syracuse University Press, 2001.
Fatima Mernissi. 1987. Beyond the Veil: Male-Female Dynamics in Modern Muslim Society.
Mahmood, Saba. Politics of Piety: The Islamic Revival and the Feminist Subject. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2005.
Elizabeth W. Fernea. 1998. In Search of Islamic Feminism: One Woman's Global Journey. New York: Doubleday Press, 1985.
Abu-Lughod, Lila (ed). Remaking Women: Feminism and Modernity in the Middle East. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1998

ANT 415: Understanding Secularism

Secularism was once considered the most "natural" way to ensure the delivery of rational, modern, tolerant and plural political orders and societies. However, in the recent past, explorations of the genealogies of Western secular models and their relationship to Christianity have subjected the question of secularism to critique and scrutiny. While many argue that secularism is inherently flawed and deceitful, others lament that it is disdainful towards religious ways of being. Then, there are others who believe that the boundaries of the political order must be (re)circumscribed and made more inclusive. What would secularism look like then? What would be its foundational tenets and what conditions would determine different secular outcomes, and how? This course delves into these questions by looking at the key presumptions behind secularism and secularization. It then explores the ways in which these presumptions achieved "natural" and "universal" status. Next, the course explores the question of toleration and the minorities by examining multiculturalism and laicite. Finally, it looks at lived realities whereby religiosity and secularity intersect, bringing all of the above to bear upon thinking about how best to refashion secularism.


  • Secularization Thesis.
  • Liberal-Secularism and the State.
  • Toleration.
  • The Public Sphere.
  • Secularization Thesis.
  • Liberal-Secularism and the State.
  • Toleration.
  • The Public Sphere .
  • Secularism's Others- case studies from France, UK, USA, Turkey, India and Bangladesh.
  • Accommodation of Differences- Multiculturalism and Laicite.
  • Legal Regulations of Religion.

Suggested Texts and References:
Asad, Talal. Formations of the Secular: Christianity, Islam, Modernity. Stanford University Press, 2003.
Bhargava, Rajeev (ed). Secularism and its Critics. New Delhi. Oxford University Press, 1998.
Butler, Judith, Jürgen Habermas, Charles Taylor and Cornel West (eds). The Power of Religion in the Public Sphere. Columbia University Press, 2011.
Bowen, John Richard. Why the French Don't Like Headscarves. Princeton University Press, New Jersey, 2007.
Connolly, William. E. Why I am not a Secularist. University of Minnesota Press, 2000.
H de Vries and L. Sullivan (eds). Political Theologies: Public Religions in a Post-Secular World, Fordham University Press. 2006.
Locke, John. A Letter Concerning Toleration. Hackett Publishing, Indianapolis, 1989 (1689).
Roy, Olivier. Secularism Confronts Islam. Columbia University Press, New York, 2007.
Tarlo, Emma. Visibly Muslim: Fashion, Politics and Faith. Berg Publishers, New York, 2010.

ANT 422: Globalization, Transnationalism and Migration

This course examines the "newness" in the ongoing reconstruction of the world order and its accompanying disorder. As a part of this investigation, the course looks at the ways in which people experiences changes in their livelihoods, how cultures are transmitted and hybridized; how migrating populations maintain connections to their homelands; how group identities are constructed and asserted; and how social movements around newly politicized issues arise. The course also looks into the changing roles of nation-states and the growing significance of transnational, diasporic, and globalized social relations and cultural forms.


  • Imagined Communities: The Origins of National Consciousness.
  • Global Flows: From National to Transnational Spheres.
  • Transnationalism as Spectacle and Consumption.
  • Peoples and Forms in Circulation.
  • Transnationalism and the Marriage and the Family.
  • The Translocal Ethnographer: Reinventing the Field.
  • Between Here and There; Rethinking Spatial Practices.
  • Critiquing Theories of Globalization.
  • Deterritorialization/ Reterritorialization.

Suggested Texts and References:
Antias, Floya. "Evaluating 'Diasporas': Beyond Ethnicity?" Sociology 3, no. 32. pp. 557-80, 1998.
Appadurai, Arjun. "Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy." In Global Culture, edited by Mike Featherstone. London: Sage, 1990.
Asad,Talal. Genealogies of Religion: Discipline and Reasons of Power in Christianity and Islam. Baltimore and London: The John Hopkins University Press, 1993.
Brah, Avtar. Cartographies of Diaspora : Contesting Identities. London ; New York: Routledge, 1997.
Braziel, Jana Evans, and Anita Mannur. Theorizing Diaspora. MA, Oxford, Melbourne: Blackwell Publishing, 2003.
Cohen, Robin. Global Diasporas: An Introduction. London: UCL Press, 1997.
Featherstone Mike (eds), Global Culture,. London: Sage. 1990
Gardner, Katy. "The Transnational Work of Kinship and Caring: Bengali-British Marriages in Historical Perspective." Global Networks, 6 no. 4, pp. 373-87. 2006.
Grewal, David Singh. Network Power: The Social Dynamics of Globalization. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2008.
Gupta, Akhil, and James Ferguson. Anthropological Locations: Boundaries and Grounds of a Field Science. Berkeley, London: University of California Press, 1997.

ANT 433: Environmental Anthropology

This course is an overview of the interrelationships between the earth's natural environment and the societies human populations have created. Environmental Anthropology is the study of social change, adaptation, and understanding in relation to the physical and perceived environment. The primary goal of this course is to familiarize students with the field of environmental sociology and discover how the study of sociology illuminates environmental issues.


  • Introduction: Definition of Some Basic Concepts: Ecology and Environment, Ecosphere and Ecosystem-Species and Population-habitual and Niche-food Web and Tropic structure. 
  • Environmental Theories and Debates: Development of Environmentalism: the Development of Ideas, Eco Centrism versus Techno Centrism-Tragedy of the Commons' Doctrine, Stockholm to Rio.
  • Major Environmental Issues: Industrialization- Urbanization-Land use and Agriculture. Energy consumption-Women and Children-What Resources Health and sanitation.
  • Environmental Hazards and Disasters: Green house Effect Nuclear Proliferation Population Deforestation Floods and Cyclones Earthquake and Rise of Riverbeds Poverty.
  • Disaster Management: Poverty Alleviation Flood Control and Drainage Program, Cyclone Management, Relief and Rehabilitation. Afforestation and Community and Social Forestry Restructuring the Industrial System National and International Efforts.
  • Environmental Policy, Planning and Research: Environmental Planning: Government Policies and Programs, Impact Evaluation and Feedback Action Environmental Research: Impact Assessment, Geographic Information System, Environmental Education and Awareness.
  • Growth, Development and Environment: Technology, Development and Environment Social and Economic Process and Environment Social Values, Norms, Beliefs and Practices and Environment Structural Change, Sustainable Growth and Environment Eco Development Strategies for Sustainable Development.
  • Social Structure and Environment: Human versus Social Ecology. Social Stratification, Inequality and Environment Social Values, Norms, Beliefs and Practices and Environment Resources Allocation, Consumption Patterns and Life Styles and Environment.
  • Politics of Environmentalism: The Political Culture of Environmental Politics, Environmental Pressure Groups - The Role Pro Government and Non-government Actors in Environmental Movement. Rich World, Poor World: Trade, Debt and Aid.
  • Climate Change: Bangladesh in Response Towards Climate Change.

Suggested Texts and References:
Gunter, Valerie and Steve Kroll-Smith. Volatile Places: Sociology of Communities and Environmental Controversies. Thousand Oaks CA: Pine Forge, 2007.
Checker, Melissa. Polluted Promises: Environmental Racism and the Search for Justice in a Southern Town. New York: New York University Press, 2005.
Harper, Charles L. Environment and Society: Human Perspectives on Environmental Issues. Upper Saddle River, N.J. : Pearson/Prentice Hall, 2008.
Rahman, Atiq, S. Huq and R. Haider. Environment and Development in Bangladesh. Vol. I & II. Dhaka: Intl Specialized Book Service Inc, 1995.