Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts
Wheaton College


Anthropology 350. Gender and Social Organization

A unified analysis of gender and kinship is considered essential to an understanding of social organization. This course starts from the premise that cultural conceptions of gender are not "natural" categories. In this course we will consider how marriage, family and household organization both reflect and structure cultural definitions of gender and sex-role behavior and the dynamic interaction of public and private domains in the production of culture. We will be comparing small-scale societies to more complex forms (peasant and industrial economies) and we will also consider the differences among those societies that organize descent bilaterally, matrilineally and patrilineally. Seminar participants are responsible for preparing and presenting the readings and conducting two small fieldwork projects.