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ANTH307 – Culture Myth and Symbolism

2017 – S1 Day

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff lecturer
Deborah Van Heekeren
Contact via ext 8622
W6A 607
Thursday 2-3pm
Tutor
David Scott
Credit points Credit points
3
Prerequisites Prerequisites
(39cp at 100 level or above) or admission to GDipArts
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
All our social practices have a cultural dimension that is as profound as anything we would usually consider to be an imperative such as earning a livelihood. In the twentieth century anthropologists concerned with the study of culture came to focus on systems of symbols and meaning. In this course we will ground the study of symbols and meaning in three dimensions of human existence: our understanding of the world around us as specific kinds of meaningful places rather than as a neutral backdrop to meaning; our own bodies and sensory bodily practices as the vehicle and means for this capacity to make the world meaningful; our capacity to experience ourselves as creatures who inhabit time, but in quite varied and distinctive ways. Throughout the emphasis will be on allowing us as students of culture with our own experiences of place, of embodiment, of ritual, of symbol and myth, of death, and of happier experiences such as music and song. While as is usual in anthropology we will read broadly from rich ethnographies of other places and people, we will create spaces to explore our own experiences as cultural beings through story telling. Where possible we will create a degree of shared experiences even of other cultures, for example, by visiting a Hindu temple.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at http://students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/enrolmentguide/academicdates/

Learning Outcomes

  1. 1. Participate in group discussion and formulate discussion questions relevant to the themes of the unit
  2. 3. Examine and evaluate a range of ethnographic and theoretical texts
  3. 4. Develop critical analysis and creative thinking skills through a tutorial exercise and an essay project
  4. 5. Understand key themes, theories and issues in the anthropology of myth and symbolic anthropology

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Hurdle Due
Attend tutes and lectures 15% ongoing
Discussion paper 20% Week 6
Major Essay 40% Wed May 13th
Take-home exam 25% 14/6/17

Attend tutes and lectures

Due: ongoing
Weighting: 15%

Attendance is compulsory and your level of participation will also be assessed. Each week all students are expected to have done the required readings and be ready to discuss them (and to link this to the lecture). Your preparation should include the formulation of at least one discussion question each week.

 

You will be expected to hand in a short summary of the reading theme and a discussion question to your tutor in each tutorial session. 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • 1. Participate in group discussion and formulate discussion questions relevant to the themes of the unit
  • 4. Develop critical analysis and creative thinking skills through a tutorial exercise and an essay project
  • 5. Understand key themes, theories and issues in the anthropology of myth and symbolic anthropology

Discussion paper

Due: Week 6
Weighting: 20%

From weeks 3 to 5 you will be shown a set of films. You will choose on of them and analyse it by applying one of the anthropological perspectives covered in the lectures and readings so far in the course (1000 -1200 words in essay format with references). Further details for this assignment will be provided in lectures and tutorials.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • 4. Develop critical analysis and creative thinking skills through a tutorial exercise and an essay project
  • 5. Understand key themes, theories and issues in the anthropology of myth and symbolic anthropology

Major Essay

Due: Wed May 13th
Weighting: 40%

The essay topics will be distributed in week 6. They will focus on the various theoretical perspectives presented in readings and lectures whilst allowing you to investigate a particular area of interest.  The further readings listed for each topic and the lecture references each week should provide the basis for this essay.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • 3. Examine and evaluate a range of ethnographic and theoretical texts
  • 5. Understand key themes, theories and issues in the anthropology of myth and symbolic anthropology

Take-home exam

Due: 14/6/17
Weighting: 25%

The exam will consist of short essay questions and will cover the lectures and tutorial readings for the unit. You will need the book of readings to complete the exam.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • 3. Examine and evaluate a range of ethnographic and theoretical texts

Delivery and Resources

iLearn is used in this Unit

Unit Schedule

available on iLearn from Week 1

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central. Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Academic Honesty Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html

Assessment Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/assessment/policy_2016.html

Grade Appeal Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html

Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/complaint_management/procedure.html​

Disruption to Studies Policy (in effect until Dec 4th, 2017): http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html

Special Consideration Policy (in effect from Dec 4th, 2017): https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policies/special-consideration

In addition, a number of other policies can be found in the Learning and Teaching Category of Policy Central.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/support/student_conduct/

Results

Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au.

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to improve your marks and take control of your study.

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Graduate Capabilities

Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

We want our graduates to be capable of reasoning, questioning and analysing, and to integrate and synthesise learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments; to be able to critique constraints, assumptions and limitations; to be able to think independently and systemically in relation to scholarly activity, in the workplace, and in the world. We want them to have a level of scientific and information technology literacy.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 1. Participate in group discussion and formulate discussion questions relevant to the themes of the unit
  • 3. Examine and evaluate a range of ethnographic and theoretical texts
  • 4. Develop critical analysis and creative thinking skills through a tutorial exercise and an essay project

Assessment tasks

  • Attend tutes and lectures
  • Discussion paper
  • Major Essay
  • Take-home exam

Creative and Innovative

Our graduates will also be capable of creative thinking and of creating knowledge. They will be imaginative and open to experience and capable of innovation at work and in the community. We want them to be engaged in applying their critical, creative thinking.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • 4. Develop critical analysis and creative thinking skills through a tutorial exercise and an essay project

Assessment tasks

  • Attend tutes and lectures
  • Discussion paper

Capable of Professional and Personal Judgement and Initiative

We want our graduates to have emotional intelligence and sound interpersonal skills and to demonstrate discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgement. They will exercise initiative as needed. They will be capable of risk assessment, and be able to handle ambiguity and complexity, enabling them to be adaptable in diverse and changing environments.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • 4. Develop critical analysis and creative thinking skills through a tutorial exercise and an essay project

Assessment tasks

  • Attend tutes and lectures
  • Discussion paper

Discipline Specific Knowledge and Skills

Our graduates will take with them the intellectual development, depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content in their chosen fields to make them competent and confident in their subject or profession. They will be able to demonstrate, where relevant, professional technical competence and meet professional standards. They will be able to articulate the structure of knowledge of their discipline, be able to adapt discipline-specific knowledge to novel situations, and be able to contribute from their discipline to inter-disciplinary solutions to problems.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 1. Participate in group discussion and formulate discussion questions relevant to the themes of the unit
  • 3. Examine and evaluate a range of ethnographic and theoretical texts
  • 5. Understand key themes, theories and issues in the anthropology of myth and symbolic anthropology

Assessment tasks

  • Attend tutes and lectures
  • Discussion paper
  • Major Essay
  • Take-home exam

Problem Solving and Research Capability

Our graduates should be capable of researching; of analysing, and interpreting and assessing data and information in various forms; of drawing connections across fields of knowledge; and they should be able to relate their knowledge to complex situations at work or in the world, in order to diagnose and solve problems. We want them to have the confidence to take the initiative in doing so, within an awareness of their own limitations.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 3. Examine and evaluate a range of ethnographic and theoretical texts
  • 4. Develop critical analysis and creative thinking skills through a tutorial exercise and an essay project

Assessment tasks

  • Attend tutes and lectures
  • Discussion paper
  • Major Essay
  • Take-home exam

Effective Communication

We want to develop in our students the ability to communicate and convey their views in forms effective with different audiences. We want our graduates to take with them the capability to read, listen, question, gather and evaluate information resources in a variety of formats, assess, write clearly, speak effectively, and to use visual communication and communication technologies as appropriate.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • 1. Participate in group discussion and formulate discussion questions relevant to the themes of the unit

Assessment task

  • Attend tutes and lectures

Socially and Environmentally Active and Responsible

We want our graduates to be aware of and have respect for self and others; to be able to work with others as a leader and a team player; to have a sense of connectedness with others and country; and to have a sense of mutual obligation. Our graduates should be informed and active participants in moving society towards sustainability.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • 3. Examine and evaluate a range of ethnographic and theoretical texts

Assessment tasks

  • Major Essay
  • Take-home exam