ANT455H1: Anthropology of the Middle East


What can Anthropology, as both an academic discipline and a way of knowing, bring to our understanding of the Middle East, a region deeply entangled in global geopolitics? What kinds of questions have social and cultural anthropologists asked when faced with the diversity of a region that stretches from North Africa to West Asia? This course explores the cultural, historical, and political complexity of the region from an ethnographic perspective, while also attending critically to the way “The Middle East” has been constructed in the first place. Rather than attempting an overview of the entire region, it focuses on themes that have compelled anthropological research in the area in recent decades, including but not limited to war, migration, labour, “terrorism”, gender, racialization, and religion. We will draw from key academic texts in conversation with other genres of knowledge production including film, journalism, and literature. No previous familiarity with the region is required.

ANTC89H3, ANT484H1 (Topics: Ethnography of the Middle East and North Africa) taken in Winter 2014, ANT384H1 (Topics: Peoples of the Middle East and North Africa) taken in Winter 2017, Winter 2018.
Thought, Belief and Behaviour (2)