Linguistic Anthropology: On the Power of Gestures, Jokes, and Words

Schools of Public Engagement: Social Sciences

Liberal Arts

Undergraduate Course

Degree Students

Linguistic Anthropology

Spring 2019

Taught By: Gretchen Pfeil

Section: A

CRN: 6634

Credits: 3

We often think of language as simply a means of expressing ideas and exchanging information. But as we move through our daily lives, our words and gestures continually construct, negotiate, and contest our identities, social worlds, and political conditions. This class explores the powerful role played by communication--and miscommunication--in the formation of gender dynamics, class relations, ethnic/racial identities, cultural institutions, and national boundaries. Students gain an understanding of the anthropological subfield of linguistic anthropology through ethnographic readings and firsthand observation of linguistic forms and language practices. Readings examine the ideas about language and complex dynamics and multiple layers of meaning in everyday language use, from high school chitchat, to asylum interviews, group therapy in drug rehab to online rants about Starbucks coffee.

College: Schools of Public Engagement (NS)

Department: Social Sciences (NSOS)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Max Enrollment: 22

Enrollment Status: Open*

*Enrollment status information is updated every five minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 12:46pm 5/20/2019

Meeting Info:

Days: Monday

Times: 6:00pm - 7:50pm

Building: Johnson/Kaplan 66 West 12th

Room: 701

Date Range: 1/28/2019 - 5/13/2019