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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Social and Political Science : Postgrad (School of Social and Political Studies)

Postgraduate Course: Kinship: Structure and Process (PGSP11184)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Social and Political Science CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course examines some of the ways in which people in different societies conceptualise and live out relatedness. It shows how notions about relatedness are linked to notions about gender, theories of procreation (which are themselves changing under the impact of New Reproductive Technologies), and ideas about bodily substance, as well as having emotional, economic, and political salience. Kinship has long been regarded as the core of the anthropological discipline, although the extent to which this is still the case is questionable. The course will consider some of the history of kinship studies, looking at some central debates in the subject and assessing their implications for anthropological theory.
Course description Course Outline: Indicative Topics
What is Kinship?
Gender and Kinship
Class, Economics, and Marriage
Kinship and Politics
The House
Sentiment, and Substance
New Reproductive Technologies and Gay Kinship
Kinship and Memory
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2015/16, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  12
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 10, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 10, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) The course will be assessed by a single essay (word-limit: 4,000).
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
By the end of the course, students should have an advanced knowledge of the ways in which anthropologists have approached kinship in both some classic non-Western cases, and more recently, in Western cultures. They will have examined in depth the economic and political salience of kinship, the history of kinship within anthropology, and the theoretical significance of key debates about what kinship is, how it might be studied, and the sources of its emotional power.
Reading List
General texts on kinship
These will help in defining terms and summarising theoretical issues in the study of kinship:

Dumont, Louis 2006[1971]. An Introduction to Two Theories of Social Anthropology
Schneider, David M. 1984. A Critique of the Study of Kinship
Barnard, Alan & Anthony Good, 1984. Research Practices in the Study of Kinship
Holy, Ladislav 1996. Anthropological Perspectives on Kinship
Parkin, Robert J. 1997. Kinship: an Introduction to the Basic Concepts
Carsten, Janet 2004. After Kinship

Readers on kinship
The following recent collections provide overviews of anthropological approaches to kinship. Several of the weekly group readings are taken from these collection, and if you plan to buy any books for this course these are likely to be the most useful.

Carsten, Janet (ed), 2000. Cultures of Relatedness: New Approaches to the Study of Kinship. Cambridge: University Press.
Parkin, Robert & Linda Stone (eds), 2004. Kinship and Family: an Anthropological Reader. Oxford: Blackwell.

In addition to the weekly readings, students are strongly advised to read from the following ethnographies (listed in alphabetical order, not order of priority!) which focus on kinship:

Astuti, Rita 1995. People of the Sea: Identity and Descent Among the Vezo of Madagascar
Busby, Cecilia 2000. The Performance of Gender: an Anthropology of Everyday Life in a South Indian Fishing Community
Campbell, J.K. 1964. Honour, Family and Patronage; a Study of Institutions and Moral Values in a Greek Mountain Community
Carsten, Janet 1997. The Heat of the Hearth: the Process of Kinship in a Malay Fishing Community
Daniel, E Valentine 1984. Fluid Signs: Being a Person the Tamil Way
Edwards, Jeanette 2000. Born and Bred: Idioms of Kinship and New Reproductive Technologies in England
Evans-Pritchard, E.E. 1951. Kinship and Marriage Among the Nuer
Good, Anthony 1991. The Female Bridegroom: a Comparative Study of Life-Crisis Rituals in South India and Sri Lanka
Gow, Peter 1991. Of Mixed Blood: Kinship and History in Peruvian Amazonia
Kapadia, Karin 1995. Siva & her Sisters: Gender, Caste, and Class in Rural South India
Mayblin, Maya 2010. Gender, Catholicism, and Morality in Brazil: Virtuous Husbands, Powerful Wives
Parry, Jonathan 1979. Caste and Kinship in Kangra
Schneider, David M. 1980 (2nd edition). American Kinship: a Cultural Account
Stasch, Rupert 2009. Society of Others: Kinship and Mourning in a West Papuan Place
Strathern, Marilyn 1992. After Nature: English Kinship in the Late Twentieth Century
Yan, Yunxiang 2003. Private Life under Socialism: Love, Intimacy and Family Change in a Chinese Village 1949-1999
Yanagisako, Sylvia Junko 2002. Producing Culture and Capital: Family Firms in Italy

Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Magnus Course
Tel: (0131 6)51 3893
Course secretaryMs Jessica Barton
Tel: (0131 6)51 5066
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