Objectives of the course are a) to provide basic notions on the fundamental concepts of social and cultural anthropology and on the main issues that are today at the center of the debate and b) to provide conceptual tools useful for reasoning autonomously and critically on issues and problems related to contemporary globalization as a complex intertwining of local and transnational processes.

At the end of the course the student has:
- a knowledge of the main anthropological theories, with the ability to contextualize their historical-scientific development
- a knowledge of the main concepts of cultural and social anthropology.
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Mutuazione: 22902482 ANTROPOLOGIA CULTURALE E SOCIALE (6 CFU L39) in Educatore di nido e dei servizi per l'infanzia L-19 PINELLI BARBARA


The course aims at providing students with methods and concepts of social and cultural anthropology. In the contemporary world, the anthropological perspective is set up as a critical study aiming at understanding cultural diversity and similarities, processes building belonging, inequalities, differences, hierarchies, and forms of power. The reflections and the ethnographic examples will be mainly addressed: gender, body, and violence; migrations, borders, and generations.
The course’s first part will put at the core classical and constitutive notions of this discipline, such as society, gender, culture, power, body, and institutions, to follow the development of the contemporary anthropological debate. This part will be the basis to analyse the cultural transmission processes and the construction of the subject by looking at the relations between generations, mainly when these same processes and construction of the subject occur in social marginality and political vulnerability conditions. Ethnographic accounts and anthropological methodology allow students to face these debates concretely and to focus on some issues: body, gender, and violence; migration, borders, and generations; the long-term reverberations of the migration processes and the exposure to violence, especially on the ways in which they affect the construction of the subject, and social and education relations.
Starting with notions explored, the course aims to provide a) a knowledge of anthropological perspectives and their main concepts to develop an ability to understand currents of thought in their historical and social dimensions. They are helpful b) in applying such knowledge, theories, and concepts to develop a reflexive, autonomous and critical gaze on the main topics of contemporary (gender, body, violence, migration, generations). The ethnographic method and ethnographic examples will encourage a participatory method to understand the ‘otherness’, becoming helpful means to develop a comparative and non-ethnocentric perspective, together with micro-macro levels of analysis.

Core Documentation

1) Ugo Fabietti, 2015. Elementi di antropologia culturale. Mondadori, Milano (chapters indicated)

Parte prima: Genesi e struttura dell’antropologia culturale (Capitoli 1, 2, 3);
Parte terza: Comunicazione e conoscenza (Capitoli 1, 2, 3);
Parte quinta: Il sé e l’altro (Capitoli 1, 2, 3);
Parte settima: Esperienza religiosa e pratica rituale (Capitoli 1, 2, 3);
Parte ottava: Creatività culturale ed espressione estetica (Capitoli 1, 2, 3);
Parte nona: Risorse e potere (Capitoli 1, 2, 3).

2) A text of your choice (the books can be read in their original version - where available):

a) Agier, Michel (2020). Lo straniero che viene. Ripensare l’ospitalità. Raffaello Cortina. Milano.
b) Bourgois, Philippe e Schonberg, Jeff (2011). Reietti e fuorilegge. Antropologia della violenza nella metropoli americana. DeriveApprodi, Roma.
c) Bourgois, Philippe (2005). Cercando rispetto. Drug economy e cultura di strada. DeriveApprodi. Roma.
d) Fassin, Didier (2013). La forza dell’ordine. Antropologia della polizia nelle periferie urbane. La Linea, Bologna.
e) Wacquant, Loic (2016). I reietti della città. Ghetto, periferia, stato. ETS.
f) Fusaschi, Michela. (2011). Quando il corpo è delle altre. Retoriche della pietà e umanitarismo-spettacolo. Bollati Boringhieri.
g) Khosravi, Shahram (2019). Io sono confine. Elèuthera.
h) Ravenda, Andrea (2018). Carbone. Inquinamento industriale, salute e politica a Brindisi. Meltemi.

3) A text of your choice (the books can be read in their original version - where available):

a) John Berger – Il settimo uomo. Contrasto.
b) Marco Omizzolo – Per motivi di giustizia. People.
c) Adichie Ngozi Chimamande – Americanah. Einaudi.
d) Behrouz Boochani – Nessun amico se non le montagne. add editore
e) Ben Lawrence – La città delle spine. Nove vite nel campo profughi più grande del mondo. Brioschi.

Type of delivery of the course

Lectures will be supported by Power Point and audio-visual materials, as well as by the reading and analyzing ethnographic examples. These support-tools intend to encourage the active participation of the students, dialogues, and discussions on the course topics.

Type of evaluation

Oral interview. Through questions/answers it will be verify that: 1) the students have read the materials assigned 2) the students are able to interpret and reflect on concepts and perspectives illustrated; 3) the students have developed capacity of autonomous thought.