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Cultural Anthropology

Cultural anthropology at the University of Oregon embraces a diverse array of approaches to the study of culture and society. Students learn to take what we often see as individual experiences and connect them to larger social issues, achieving cross-cultural understanding and critical social awareness. Faculty and graduate students in the department conduct research on a wide range of theoretical questions about culture and society, applying ethnographic, historical, comparative and interdisciplinary methodologies. Cultural anthropology faculty conduct research in South Asia, the Middle East, Europe, West Africa, North America and throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. The faculty’s areas of focus include:

• inequality and power: social justice, indigenous and human rights, migration, social movements, identity and representations, nationalisms, religion, race, sex, gender and sexuality

• engaging communities: cultural heritage, historic preservation, cultural resource management, expressive culture and performance, critical and decolonial praxis/methods

• global cultural connections: globalization, political economy, development, nationalisms, labor, tourism, migration, area studies, conflict, psychology, folklore, and medical anthropology.

The cultural program is highly interdisciplinary and involves collaborations with the other anthropological subfields, with researchers across campus, and with international scholars. The research experience and skills students gain can be used in careers in law, medicine, education, government, business, and other fields. Cultural anthropology faculty are also involved in numerous initiatives, projects, programs and centers across campus. Some of these include:

Folklore Program

The Oregon Folklife Network

The Center for Latina/o and Latin American Studies (CLLAS)

Ethnic Studies

The Center for the Study of Women in Society (CSWS)

The Center for Asian and Pacific Studies (CAPS)

Woman with zombies

An image from graduate student Bryce Peake’s photo-ethnographic research on the Toronto Zombie Walk. His photo “Red Dress Critique” depicts a critical performance against ‘victim’ representations of women in horror films, and is from his Master’s research on the implications of trance-states on imaginative forms of social activism.

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