General information

Course type AMUPIE
Module title Current Anthropological Theory
Language English
Module lecturer dr Małgorzata Kowalska
Lecturer's email
Lecturer position Assistant Professor
Faculty Faculty of Anthropology and Cultural Studies
Semester 2024/2025 (summer)
Duration 30
USOS code CAT-12-EtnC



Institute of Anthropology and Ethnology

Collegium Historicum Novum, MORASKO Campus

Uniwersytetu Poznańskiego 7, Poznań

Module aim (aims)

This course examines both the classic works of key shapers of the world anthropological traditions and the current discussion on the ethnographic theory. Its main aim is to introduce the students to the key theoretical problems addressed by anthropology; its most recent reactions to local and global socio-economic and political currents; and to the ongoing debates on the logic and the future of the discipline.

Pre-requisites in terms of knowledge, skills and social competences (where relevant)

Students should have knowledge of the history of the discipline and its main topics of interest.

3. Assessment criteria

Students will be expected to prepare to read key texts for each session and actively participate in class discussions (30% of the final mark), prepare one short seminar presentation based on one of the weekly key readings (20% of the final mark) and write an essay on one of the chosen topics (50% of the final mark).

A/5 EXCELLENT - outstanding performance
B/4+ VERY GOOD - above average with few minor mistakes and/or omissions
C/4 GOOD - generally sound work with some minor mistakes and/or omissions
D/3+ SATISFACTORY – fair, but with a number of serious mistakes and/or omissions
E/3 SUFFICIENT – fair, but with significant shortcomings


Week 2

The savage slot – the missing slot

Week 3-5

Being affected

Week 6-7


Week 8-9

Anthropology and ethnography

Week 10-14

Different world-making projects

Week 15

Accessible, engaged, ethical

Reading list

Trouillot, M-R. (1991) ‘Anthropology and the savage slot: The poetics and politics of otherness’ in Fox, R. (ed.)

Recapturing Anthropology Santa Fe, NM: School of American Research, 17-44

Favret-Saada, J. (2012) ‘Death at your heels. When ethnographic writing propagates the force of witchcraft’ & ‘Being affected’ in HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory 2 (1), 45–53 & 435-45

Rosaldo, R. (1993 [1989]) ‘Introduction: Grief and a Headhunter’s Rage’ in Culture and Truth: The Remaking of

Social Analysis Boston: Beacon Press; London: Taylor & Francis

Robbins, J. (2013) ‘Beyond the Suffering Subject: Toward an Anthropology of the Good’ in Journal of the Royal

Anthropological Institute (N.S.) 19, 447-462

Scheper-Hughes, N. (1995) ‘The Primacy of the Ethical: Propositions for a Militant Anthropology’ Current Anthropology 36, no. 3: 409-440.

Fortun, K (2012) ‘Ethnography in Late Industrialism’ in Cultural Anthropology, vol. 27, nr 3,446–464

Ingold, T (2014) ‘That’s enough about ethnography’ in HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory 4 (1): 383–395

Ingold, T. (2017) ‘Anthropology contra ethnography’ in HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory 7 (1): 21–26

Miller, D. (2017) ‘Anthropology is the discipline but the goal is ethnography’ in HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory 7 (1): 27–31

Kohn, E. (2007) ‘How dogs dream: Amazonian natures and the politics of transspecies Engagement’ in American

Ethnologist, Vol. 34, No. 1, 3–24

Ingold, T. (2013) Anthropology Beyond Humanity, Edward Westermarck Memorial Lecture, Suomen Antropologi: Journal of the Finnish Anthropological Society 38 (3), 5-23

Tsing, A. (2010) Arts of Inclusion, or How to Love a Mushroom, Mānoa, Vol. 22, No. 2, Wilde Hearts: Literature, Ecology, and Inclusion.

Rose, D.B. (2017) Shimmer: When All You Love is Being Trashed. in A. Tsing, H. A. Swanson, E. Gan, N. Bubandt

(eds.) Arts of Living on a Damaged Planet. Ghosts and Monsters of the Anthropocene, Minneapolis: University of

Minnesota Press, G51-G63

Chakrabarty, D. (2017) ‘The Politics of the Climate Change is More Important than the Politics of Capitalism’ in: Theory, Culture & Society Vol. 34 (2–3) 25–3