Week 1 — Introduction SOCI/ANTH 441 Material Culture Alexandre Enkerli
Today <ul><li>Get to know each other </li></ul><ul><li>Introduce the course </li></ul><ul><li>Give ideas for project </li>...
Podcast <ul><li>Audio recording </li></ul><ul><li>Automatic </li></ul><ul><li>Posted on Moodle after class </li></ul><ul><...
 
Alex <ul><li>Ethnographic disciplines (cultural anthropology, linguistic anthropology, ethnomusicology, folkloristics) </l...
Attitude Toward Material Culture <ul><li>Somewhat detached, pragmatic </li></ul><ul><li>Geek culture </li></ul><ul><li>Not...
Introductions <ul><li>Background </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Academic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Personal </li></ul></ul><ul><li...
<ul><li>Talking About Things </li></ul>
 
Terms <ul><li>Thing, object, entity, stuff, matter, substance, item, artefact, property </li></ul><ul><li>Possessions, bel...
Some Themes <ul><li>Inequality, Gender, Domesticity, Public/private dichotomy, Class, Technology adoption, Science, Engine...
Interdisciplinary <ul><li>Psychology, cultural studies, engineering, history, market research, folkloristics, architecture...
Own Approach to Course <ul><li>Ethnography </li></ul><ul><li>Folkloristics </li></ul><ul><li>Music </li></ul><ul><li>Senso...
 
Course Outline <ul><li>May change </li></ul><ul><li>From lecture to discussion to presentations </li></ul><ul><li>Attendan...
Readings <ul><li>RefWorks </li></ul><ul><li>All in databases (links to PDF Files) </li></ul><ul><li>On-Campus </li></ul><u...
Moodle <ul><li>Readings </li></ul><ul><li>Assignments </li></ul><ul><li>“ Handouts” </li></ul><ul><li>Slides </li></ul><ul...
<ul><li>Social analysis of an object </li></ul>
Three parts <ul><li>Description of a Thing (20%, due October 1) </li></ul><ul><li>Presentation (30%, November 5—26) </li><...
Project Guidelines <ul><li>Social science on thing </li></ul><ul><li>People through objects </li></ul><ul><li>From thing t...
Choosing a Thing <ul><li>Leaving open </li></ul><ul><li>Some advice </li></ul><ul><li>If need help, can discuss </li></ul>...
Example Things <ul><li>Computer keyboard, cellphone, vinyl record, vitamin tablets, Aeron chair, vibrator, statue </li></u...
Thing Characteristics <ul><li>Bounded or boundless </li></ul><ul><li>Unique (Statue of Liberty) or category (pills) </li><...
Choosing Approach <ul><li>Named theory (SCOT, SST, ANT, Symbolic Interactionism) </li></ul><ul><li>Scholars </li></ul><ul>...
Method <ul><li>Description (including sensory) </li></ul><ul><li>Genealogy (history, genesis) </li></ul><ul><li>Ethnograph...
Questions to ask <ul><li>Dimensions  from Joseph Dumit’s Artifact Project  http://web.mit.edu/dumit/www/artifact-long.html...
Presentation <ul><li>More than “show and tell” </li></ul><ul><li>Plan ahead </li></ul><ul><li>From “work-in-progress” to “...
Paper <ul><li>Bring together </li></ul><ul><li>Sociology/anthropology of thing </li></ul><ul><li>Case studies </li></ul>
Next Week <ul><li>Dant  on Driver-Car </li></ul><ul><li>Schnapp  on Moka Express </li></ul><ul><li>Barthes  on New Citroën...
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SOCI/ANTH 441 Material Culture Week 1: Introduction

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Introductions, things, course outline, project

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SOCI/ANTH 441 Material Culture Week 1: Introduction

  1. 1. Week 1 — Introduction SOCI/ANTH 441 Material Culture Alexandre Enkerli
  2. 2. Today <ul><li>Get to know each other </li></ul><ul><li>Introduce the course </li></ul><ul><li>Give ideas for project </li></ul><ul><li>Talk about things </li></ul>
  3. 3. Podcast <ul><li>Audio recording </li></ul><ul><li>Automatic </li></ul><ul><li>Posted on Moodle after class </li></ul><ul><li>On-record </li></ul><ul><li>Can pause </li></ul><ul><li>Would prefer to leave on-record </li></ul>
  4. 5. Alex <ul><li>Ethnographic disciplines (cultural anthropology, linguistic anthropology, ethnomusicology, folkloristics) </li></ul><ul><li>Summer sociology </li></ul><ul><li>Constructive, collaborative learning </li></ul><ul><li>Adapting </li></ul><ul><li>New course </li></ul>
  5. 6. Attitude Toward Material Culture <ul><li>Somewhat detached, pragmatic </li></ul><ul><li>Geek culture </li></ul><ul><li>Not gadget freak </li></ul><ul><li>More aural than visual </li></ul><ul><li>Not full of “purty pickters” (pretty pictures) </li></ul><ul><li>Navigate abstract and concrete </li></ul><ul><li>Sensory aspects </li></ul>
  6. 7. Introductions <ul><li>Background </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Academic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Personal </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Material culture </li></ul><ul><li>Favourite thing? </li></ul><ul><li>Anything else? </li></ul>
  7. 8. <ul><li>Talking About Things </li></ul>
  8. 10. Terms <ul><li>Thing, object, entity, stuff, matter, substance, item, artefact, property </li></ul><ul><li>Possessions, belongings, commodities, goods, products </li></ul><ul><li>It, this, that </li></ul><ul><li>Material, physical, virtual, imagined </li></ul><ul><li>Natural, manufactured, crafted, processed </li></ul>
  9. 11. Some Themes <ul><li>Inequality, Gender, Domesticity, Public/private dichotomy, Class, Technology adoption, Science, Engineering, Postmodernism, Industrialization, Consumption, Globalization, Commodification. Environmentalism, Gift economy, Property rights, Intellectual property, Ethnic identity, Cultural diversity, Cultural heritage, Tradition, Appropriation, Personalization/customization, Fetishism, Value, Purity, Trash, Subjectivity, Embodiment, Agency, Materialism, Aesthetics... </li></ul>
  10. 12. Interdisciplinary <ul><li>Psychology, cultural studies, engineering, history, market research, folkloristics, architecture, economics, archaeology, popular culture, art history, gender studies, semiotics, political science, museum studies, consumer research, American studies, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on anthropology and sociology </li></ul>
  11. 13. Own Approach to Course <ul><li>Ethnography </li></ul><ul><li>Folkloristics </li></ul><ul><li>Music </li></ul><ul><li>Sensory anthropology </li></ul><ul><li>Semiotics </li></ul>
  12. 15. Course Outline <ul><li>May change </li></ul><ul><li>From lecture to discussion to presentations </li></ul><ul><li>Attendance required, even during presentations </li></ul><ul><li>Seminar participation outside of class </li></ul><ul><li>Come prepared </li></ul><ul><li>“ Prewrite” </li></ul>
  13. 16. Readings <ul><li>RefWorks </li></ul><ul><li>All in databases (links to PDF Files) </li></ul><ul><li>On-Campus </li></ul><ul><li>May add or replace </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Web content </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Supplementary readings </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Project </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Further understanding </li></ul></ul>
  14. 17. Moodle <ul><li>Readings </li></ul><ul><li>Assignments </li></ul><ul><li>“ Handouts” </li></ul><ul><li>Slides </li></ul><ul><li>Podcast </li></ul><ul><li>Forums </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Forced but can unsubscribe </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Podcasts </li></ul>
  15. 18. <ul><li>Social analysis of an object </li></ul>
  16. 19. Three parts <ul><li>Description of a Thing (20%, due October 1) </li></ul><ul><li>Presentation (30%, November 5—26) </li></ul><ul><li>Final Paper (40%, Due December 5) </li></ul>
  17. 20. Project Guidelines <ul><li>Social science on thing </li></ul><ul><li>People through objects </li></ul><ul><li>From thing to society/culture </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on anthropology/sociology </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple angles </li></ul>
  18. 21. Choosing a Thing <ul><li>Leaving open </li></ul><ul><li>Some advice </li></ul><ul><li>If need help, can discuss </li></ul><ul><li>No ideal thing, no impossible thing </li></ul><ul><li>Accessible literature </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Not too specialized </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not overwhelming </li></ul></ul>
  19. 22. Example Things <ul><li>Computer keyboard, cellphone, vinyl record, vitamin tablets, Aeron chair, vibrator, statue </li></ul><ul><li>Hood (UofT): blackboards, hats, political buttons, music boxes, dress, chocolate, tattoo, postcards, mirrors... </li></ul><ul><li>Other examples: rock, bumper stickers, stamp, t-shirts, car, bicycle </li></ul>
  20. 23. Thing Characteristics <ul><li>Bounded or boundless </li></ul><ul><li>Unique (Statue of Liberty) or category (pills) </li></ul><ul><li>Durable or transient/ephemeral </li></ul><ul><li>Technology </li></ul>
  21. 24. Choosing Approach <ul><li>Named theory (SCOT, SST, ANT, Symbolic Interactionism) </li></ul><ul><li>Scholars </li></ul><ul><li>Field/domain </li></ul><ul><li>Background </li></ul><ul><li>Other work </li></ul>
  22. 25. Method <ul><li>Description (including sensory) </li></ul><ul><li>Genealogy (history, genesis) </li></ul><ul><li>Ethnography (including autoethnography/introspection) </li></ul><ul><li>Social/cultural analysis (adoption, implications, impacts, meanings...) </li></ul>
  23. 26. Questions to ask <ul><li>Dimensions from Joseph Dumit’s Artifact Project http://web.mit.edu/dumit/www/artifact-long.html </li></ul><ul><li>Symbolic, Labour, Professional/Epistemological, Material, Technological, Political, Economic, Bodily/Organic, Historical, Contextual/Situated, Educational, Mythological </li></ul>
  24. 27. Presentation <ul><li>More than “show and tell” </li></ul><ul><li>Plan ahead </li></ul><ul><li>From “work-in-progress” to “almost done” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Office hour presentations” </li></ul>
  25. 28. Paper <ul><li>Bring together </li></ul><ul><li>Sociology/anthropology of thing </li></ul><ul><li>Case studies </li></ul>
  26. 29. Next Week <ul><li>Dant on Driver-Car </li></ul><ul><li>Schnapp on Moka Express </li></ul><ul><li>Barthes on New Citroën </li></ul>
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