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Cornell University    
  Jan 18, 2018
Courses of Study 2015-2016 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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ANTHR 4426 - [Ideology and Social Production]

(GB) (SBA-AS)      
Fall. Next offered 2016-2017. 4 credits.

Co-meets with ANTHR 7426 .

S. Sangren.

This course is premised on the notion that understanding social life requires understanding how social institutions are produced and sustained through time-that is to say, one must understand “society” as a process of production. By the same token, all cultures produce ideas or “representation” (e.g., about reality, nature, society, gender, authority) that serve to legitimize or validate each society’s particular social arrangements. These ideologies play an important role in social production, on the one hand, and are also products of social processes, on the other. This course focuses on the linkages between ideology and social production in readings drawn from social theory and ethnographic case studies. We discuss strongly diverging views (psychoanalytic, postmodernist, poststructuralist, practice-theory, neo-Marxist) on how best to conceive social processes. An integrating theme is that understanding ideology and its alienating operations is essential in developing a coherent understanding of what culture, in the last analysis, is.

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