• Class Number 4772
  • Term Code 3030
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dr Muhammad Kavesh
    • Dr Muhammad Kavesh
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 24/02/2020
  • Class End Date 05/06/2020
  • Census Date 08/05/2020
  • Last Date to Enrol 02/03/2020
SELT Survey Results

This course introduces students to the most urgent issues in India today, looking at the remarkable impact of technology on Indian culture and society, from infrastructure to media and digital. It uses the anthropological lens to bring technology alive, as it is encountered in everyday life by people and institutions. The course begins with an examination of key institutions in India: its social system and cultural practices. It draws on the history and ethnography of South Asia, and the major concepts that framed the discipline of anthropology, as inseparable from the colonialism in Asia. The first part of the course will  primarily focus on the foundations of Indian society, its social, cultural and political make up, before moving to main part of the course which focuses on technology.

The second part of the course investigates the multiple effects of technological schemes and innovation in India and their implications for social life. What do we mean by technology? What is the relationship between technology and social order and cultural values? How has technology, as part of India’s embrace of economic reforms, reshaped society and the politics of identity? What is the role of the state and private enterprise in promoting technological innovations? These are some of the question we will cover.

The final part of the course will focus on the effects of neoliberalism on both private and public spheres, in promoting policies and ideologies that continue to be key drivers in shaping ideologies and everyday practices in India and its vast diaspora. While the course will focus primarily on India, readings and classes will also cover aspects related to other countries in South Asia.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the skills and knowledge to:
1. demonstrate an understanding of and evaluate historical and current events and developments that have shaped India and South Asia,
2. identify and critique contemporary systems of Indian culture, technology, religious beliefs, and past traditions,
3. examine current debates relating to culture and power in the context of anthropology, 
4. analyse the regional significance of cultural events, institutions and technological developments in Indian society,
5. demonstrate an understanding of the anthropological approach, its method and theoretical underpinnings through which current knowledge about India and South Asian studies has developed.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:
  • Written comments
  • Verbal comments
  • Feedback to the whole class, to groups, to individuals, focus groups

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction: Anthropology and Technology In addition to a course overview, we will also spend some time to determine which week each student will lead the tutorial.
2 Technologies of Colonial India
3 Technologies of Self Guest Lecture: Dr Shameem Black
4 Technologies of Body
5 Technological Advancement and Sustainable Development
6 Green Revolution and Agricultural Technologies
7 Politics and Technologies of Governance
8 Mobile Phone, Gender, and Power Dynamics Guest Lecture: Assa Doron
9 War Technologies
10 Cricket, Media, and the Nationalism Discourse
11 Bollywood and Taste
12 Concluding Remarks and Student Presentations

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Tutorial participation assessment 10 % 29/05/2020 05/06/2020 1,2,3,4,5
Summary essay (1) 15 % 22/03/2020 31/03/2020 2,3
Argument and critique (2) 20 % 01/05/2020 10/05/2020 1,2,3
Final Essay and Presentation 55 % 31/05/2020 08/06/2020 2,3,4,5

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 29/05/2020
Return of Assessment: 05/06/2020
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5

Tutorial participation assessment

Informed participation and contribution to discussion.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 15 %
Due Date: 22/03/2020
Return of Assessment: 31/03/2020
Learning Outcomes: 2,3

Summary essay (1)

Short essay (500-700 words) summarizing the argument of an assigned journal article.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 01/05/2020
Return of Assessment: 10/05/2020
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Argument and critique (2)

Short essay (700-900 words) summarizing the argument of an assigned journal article and offering critical reflections.

Assessment Task 4

Value: 55 %
Due Date: 31/05/2020
Return of Assessment: 08/06/2020
Learning Outcomes: 2,3,4,5

Final Essay and Presentation

Students should complete an essay and presentation on a topic related to technology in India

Written essay of 2500 words (including notes and bibliography) [45%]. And a verbal presentation on the final essay in the last week (Week 12), including Q & A. [10%]

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

Online Submission

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information. In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service — including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy. If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes. Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).
Dr Muhammad Kavesh

Research Interests

Anthropology, South Asia, Environment, Gender, Religion, Politics, More-than-human

Dr Muhammad Kavesh

Wednesday By Appointment
Wednesday By Appointment
Dr Muhammad Kavesh

Research Interests

Dr Muhammad Kavesh

Wednesday By Appointment
Wednesday By Appointment

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions