The Anthropology of Magic, Witchcraft, and Religion
(ANTH M11 )

Fall 2018


Upon completion of ANTH M11, you should be able to:

  1. categorize and contrast the various sub-fields of anthropology and explain how each of these provides insights into human belief systems.
  2. discuss the manners in which humans acquire knowledge of the world and understand the uses and the limitations of that knowledge.
  3. identify, explain, apply, and criticize the concepts of ethnocentrism and cultural relativism.
  4. recognize the functions of belief systems and distinguish between different expressions of these functions.
  5. list the various components which anthropologists have identified as parts of belief systems
  6. explain the different structures of belief systems.
  7. explain and differentiate between the belief systems activities that anthropologists understand under the terms “magic, “witchcraft”, and “religion”.
  8. recognize how belief systems emerge and evolve in responses to specific historical events and group needs and illustrate the processes by which belief systems change using specific examples from the ethnographic record.
  9. appraise their own personal belief systems using the theories and examples provided in class.




  Make a Religion Project
  Siddhartha Essay (alternative to the Make a Religion Project
  Religious Sites Project
Lectures 1 - Anthropology and the Study of Religion
  2 - The Universe and How We Know It
  3 - The Roots of Religiosity
  4 - The Structures of Religion
  5 - Sacred Spaces
  6 - Shamanism
  7 - It's Magic!
Lecture Notes Notes 1 - Anthropology and the Study of Religion
  Notes 2 - The Universe and How We Know It
  Notes 3 - The Roots of Religiosity
  Notes 4 - The Structures of Religion
  Notes 5 - Sacred Spaces
  Notes 6 - Shamanism
  Notes 7 - It's Magic!
available here






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