• Foundations in Cultural Anthropology is a five-week online course that will introduce you to the concepts, theory and practice of cultural and social anthropology. From definitions of cultural identity to the complexities of gender, race, religion and kinship, you will explore key concepts in the study of human societies and behaviour, and nurture a deeper appreciation for cultural diversity. Drawing from a range of fieldwork case studies, we adopt a comparative cross-cultural perspective that challenges cultural assumptions. Our enquiry-based approach will help us to understand contemporary issues, like family ties, religion, and the interaction between global world systems and indigenous communities. By introducing, applying and critiquing fundamental theories and methods of anthropological research, we will deepen our understanding of human society and begin to view the world through an anthropological lens. We’ll also discover how anthropological theory complements and informs related disciplines like archaeology, and how anthropologists use research methods such as ethnography to study human behaviour, relationships and cultural practices. We will also find out where cultural anthropologists are working today, and how they are contributing to our understanding of the modern world.
  • Ritual and magic have played a vital role in the development and structure of societies all over the world, and throughout human history. Shamans, sangomas, voodoo queens and high priestesses all hold important keys to our understanding of ritual practices and the use of magic in society. In this unique five-week online course we will embark on an anthropological journey through the supernatural world. Adopting a cross-cultural perspective, you will be guided week by week through the discovery and critical evaluation of rich anthropological, historical and archaeological evidence. Why has the supernatural been so important to us, and how has its relevance been embedded in, and expressed by, different cultures across time and space? To what extent are we still influenced by the spiritual realm in all of its various manifestations? We will seek answers to these questions by examining aspects of mythology, folklore and ritual practice that fascinate and challenge, glimpsing a realm of humanity that is at times both enlightening and terrifying.