University Of Cape Town Anthropology

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University Of Cape Town Anthropology

University Of Cape Town Anthropology

Anthropology at UCT provides practical training in analysis and methods of discovery that are useful in any activity that demands insight into complex social realities. They offer a particular focus on the southern hemisphere and emphasize Ethnographic Research. The Undergraduate Courses aim to foster civic consciousness, an awareness of the innovative solutions to age-old problems of living in and making sense of the world, and an appreciation for the creativity with which we engage in the world.

The Graduate Courses and research aim to produce graduates who are skilled in questioning the taken-for-granted aspects of everyday life, applying their comparative knowledge and specific research skills to produce Innovative Responses to pressing social issues.

Anthropology is a form of disciplined curiosity about people’s lifeways and world views. It seeks to understand human interactions in all kinds of social groupings, including families, networks, communities, institutions, organizations, groups, societies, and nations. The concepts of ‘culture’ and ‘society’ are central to the discipline and help us describe and understand how organizations and institutions work. ‘Culture’ refers to preconceptions, values, knowledge, and norms that structure and give meaning to peoples’ relationships, and ‘society’ is the linked institutions that structure and organize social behavior. University Of Cape Town Anthropology

Studying Anthropology

Everyone should consider studying anthropology. We think that anthropological perspectives are essential for fostering civic consciousness. By this, we mean that understanding the various ways that individuals occupy the world and make sense of it can encourage civic virtues and peaceful living, as well as generating both critical queries and creative solutions to processing local and global issues.

Because they can use comparative data about societies all around the world to refute established beliefs and offer original solutions, anthropologists are helpful to prospective employers. UCT anthropology graduates pursue careers in a variety of sectors, including:

  • Medical Research
  • Housing Policy
  • Journalism
  • Documentary Production
  • Drama
  • Psychology
  • Advertising
  • Tourism
  • Environmental Science
  • Industrial Relations

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Social Anthropology

The difficulties presented by social and cultural variety in the modern world are investigated by social anthropology. Humans have created countless ways to satiate their bodily, emotional, and social wants and desires. Some, like war and environmental destruction, are successful in fostering social relations, while others are not. An organized type of curiosity, anthropology looks for solutions to these.

It carefully considers the viewpoints, values, and experiences of individuals and communities from various origins, questions commonly taken-for-granted facets of social life, and uncovers the immense complexity of individuals’ daily lives. The discipline creatively pulls from a vast amount of knowledge about the many ways that different groups of people live through its comparative method. By doing this, it advances creative interpretations of social problems.

Undergraduate Studies

Requirements for a major in Social Anthropology (AXL04):

First Year

One of the following:

  • AXL1400F Words, Deeds, Bones and Things (was SAN1015F)
  • AXL1401S Introduction to the Anthropology of Development and Difference (was SAN1013S)

Second Year

  • AXL2403S Belief and Symbolism (was SAN2024S)
  • AXL2402S Anthropology of Power and Wealth (was SAN2015S)

One of the following (if only one is chosen from the above two):

  • AXL2401F Medical Anthropology (was SAN2026F)
  • AXL2404S Anthropology of Rural Environment (was SAN2017S)

Third Year

  • AXL3400F The Challenge of Culture (was SAN3014F)
  • AXL3401S Anthropology through Ethnography (was SAN3015S)

Additional compulsory (core) course for the major (not credit bearing):

  • AXL2400Z Anthropological Fieldwork (normally taken in the third year of study) (was SAN2016Z)

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  • For AXL2401F (was SAN2026F): one of AGE103F, AXL1401S (was SAN1013S), AXL1400F (was SAN1015F, replacing SAN1014F), or by permission of the Head of Section;
  • For AXL2402S (was SAN2015S), AXL2403S (was SAN2024S) and AXL2404S (was SAN2017S): two of AGE1003F, AXL1401S (was SAN1013S), AXL1400F (was SAN1015F, replacing SAN1014F), AXL2401F (was SAN2026F), or by permission of the Head of Section;
  • For AXL3400F (was SAN3014F): two of AXL2403F/S (was SAN2024F/S), AXL2401F/S (was SAN2026F/S), AXL2402F/S (was SAN2015F/S), AXL2404S (was SAN2017S), or by permission of the Head of Section;
  • For AXL3401S (was SAN3015S): two of AXL2403F/S (was SAN2024F/S), AXL2401F/S (was SAN2026F/S), AXL2402F/S (was SAN2015F/S), AXL2404S (was SAN2017S), AXL3400F (was SAN3014F), or by permission of the Head of Section;
  • For AXL2400Z (was SAN2016Z): declared intention to major in Anthropology and admission to at least two of AXL2403F (was SAN2024F), AXL2401F (was SAN2026F), AXL2402S (was SAN2015S), AXL2404S (was SAN2017S), AXL3400F (was SAN3014F), AXL3401S (was SAN 3015S);
  • Semester Study Abroad students intending to register for AXL2000 and AXL3000 level AFRICAN & GENDER STUDIES, ANTHROPOLOGY & LINGUISTICS 41 courses must be able to demonstrate a prior understanding of the basic principles of the comparative approach of Social-Cultural Anthropology, including Cultural Relativism and its limitations.

NOTE: All students planning to major in Anthropology MUST complete AXL2400Z (was SAN2016Z) in their third year of study. Click here to access Anthropology’s website.

Contact us:
Email us
Tel: 021 650 3678
Fax: 021 650 2307
Postal address:
Department of Anthropology
University of Cape Town
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