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How is our sense of who we are shaped by society and culture? In what ways do such understandings of personhood vary cross-culturally? This subject addresses these concerns from an anthropological perspective, applying theories of personhood, identity and relatedness to broader topics such as nationalism, globalisation, migration, travel and tourism and the life course. We will investigate comparative and ethnographic case studies of the person and their relevance to a range of political, ethical, economic and cultural concerns about embryo rights, global meanings of childhood, nationalism as everyday practice and the role of biomedicine, new genetics and digital technologies in shaping understandings of personhood across the world today.
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of this subject students should:
- Develop an appreciation of the interplay between theory and ethnography inquiry;
- Demonstrate an understanding of anthropological studies of personhood and their links to an evolving range of social and cultural concerns in the world today;
- Develop a critical, comparative appreciation of cultural diversity through a range of historically situated and contemporary case studies;
- Be able to communicate effectively in written and oral formats.
Last updated: 13 November 2019