- Code ANTH3017
- Unit Value 6 units
- Offered by School of Archaeology and Anthropology
- ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
- Course subject Anthropology
- Areas of interest Anthropology, Australian Studies, Development Studies, Indigenous Australian Studies, Asia Pacific Studies
- Academic career UGRD
- Dr Ashley Carruthers
- Mode of delivery In Person
Second Semester 2021
See Future Offerings
Over the last forty years, a global discourse of indigeneity and indigenous peoples has emerged, originating and diffusing in the 1980s and onwards from particular nation-states. This internationalist concept of indigeneity had been centered in the United Nations, and enshrined in documents of other multilateral organisations (the World Bank, International Labor Organisation). Peoples now often regarded as `indigenous’ have long existed – but this category is relatively recent, as are many developments associated with it.
Like other such global discourses (e.g. `nationalism’), how indigeneity is understood varies across particular contexts. Its global dissemination makes such variability inevitable, and the question of how it intersects with particular socio-economic-political conjunctures, essential. Generally speaking, indigenous-settler dynamics (such as are found in Australia, North America, New Zealand, and parts of Latin America) have been, in some respects, most receptive of the collective, internationally-authored, `indigenous’ socio-political identity. For example, Australia as a state accepts the notion that it is home to `indigenous’ people. The recent concept of indigeneity has been seen as more ambiguous, unsettling, or downright threatening, hence less acceptable, in many Asian, East and South Asian, as well as African countries. This course will examine the intersections of international concept and national circumstances, both conceptually and by case studies.
This course will look at questions of the emergence of an internationalist global category from two principal directions underpinned by readings from anthropological theorists on: the reification of cultural constructs, capitalist constructions of meaning, and the exercise of powers of recognition and legitimation, the changing role of nation-states globally (Bourdieu, Foucault, Wolf); and more political-economically situated ideas concerning the current global conjuncture, how and why this particular kind of internationalist category has emerged and its intersection with what Kalb (2009) calls `“critical junctions” that link global process via particular national arenas and local histories, often hidden, to emergent and situated events and narratives…’
Students will work through a number of case studies of indigenous peoples and settings; and discuss what has happened in various cases, the extent to which the category `indigenous’ has been mobilized concerning and by particular groups, and consider what the future of this category of `indigeneity’ may be.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- Discuss the history of events and factors in the emergence of examples of international and national indigenous movements and activisms.
- Understand the relation of this emergence to theory and practice both in development and anthropology.
- Draw upon major theoretical debates in anthropology in terms of which this emergence has been understood, and to interpret and evaluate these theoretical approaches.
- Interpret and evaluate approaches written specifically from indigenous perspectives. Identify, locate and evaluate primary sources relating to a particular instance of state practice/process, or issues arising around it.
Indicative AssessmentTutorial group presentation, 10 -15 min (10%) (LO's 1, 2, 4, 5)
Journal entries, 3 x 250 words (5% each for a total 15%) (LO's 3, 4, 5)
Research paper topic proposal and initial annotated bibliography (35%) (LO's 1, 2, 6) 1500 words including bibliographic annotations
Final term paper 40% (LO's 3-6) 2500 words (excluding references)
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Workload130 hours of total student learning time made up from: a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 24 hours of lectures and 12 hours of tutorials; and b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing.
Requisite and Incompatibility
Prescribed TextsSissons, Jeff 2005. First Peoples: Indigenous Cultures and their Futures. Reaktion Books.
Broome, Richard 2001 Aboriginal Australians: Black Responses to White Dominance, 1788-2001. 3rd ed. Sydney: Allen and Unwin.
Harvey, Neil 1998. The Chiapas Rebellion: The Struggle for Land and Democracy. Durham, NC: Duke UP.
Niezen, Ronald 2003. The Origins of Indigenism: Human Rights and the Politics of Identity. Los Angeles: University of California.
Maaka Roger and Anderson Chris 2006 (eds). Indigenous Experience: Global Perspectives. Toronto: Canadian Scholars' Press.
Garoutte, Eva Marie 2003. Real Indians: Identity and the Survival of Native America. Berkeley: California UP.
Warren, Jonathan W. 2001. Antiracism: Indian Resurgence in Brazil. Durham, NC: Duke UP.
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