Universität Wien FIND

Return to Vienna for the summer semester of 2022. We are planning to hold courses mainly on site to enable the personal exchange between you, your teachers and fellow students. We have labelled digital and mixed courses in u:find accordingly.

Due to COVID-19, there might be changes at short notice (e.g. individual classes in a digital format). Obtain information about the current status on u:find and check your e-mails regularly.

Please read the information on https://studieren.univie.ac.at/en/info.

240523 SE Selling/Consuming Ethnicity - Material culture in the context of anthropological debates (P4) (2017S)

Continuous assessment of course work

Participation at first session is obligatory!


Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first served).


max. 40 participants
Language: English


Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

Wednesday 29.03. 09:00 - 13:00 Hörsaal C, NIG 4. Stock
Wednesday 26.04. 09:00 - 13:00 Hörsaal C, NIG 4. Stock
Wednesday 10.05. 09:00 - 13:00 Hörsaal C, NIG 4. Stock
Wednesday 31.05. 09:00 - 13:00 Hörsaal C, NIG 4. Stock
Wednesday 14.06. 09:00 - 13:00 Hörsaal C, NIG 4. Stock
Wednesday 21.06. 09:00 - 13:00 Hörsaal C, NIG 4. Stock


Aims, contents and method of the course

The seminar deals with the analisis of the commercialization of authenticity and ethnicity, which is essential and indispensable to understand (urban) societies in the context of material culture from a contemporary anthropological perspective. In the seminar, theoretical anthropological approaches will be discussed and linked to the collected fieldwork data of the participating students.

The course introduces anthropological theory and practice about material culture and consumption in urban contexts. The students are enabled to identify and analyse research fields of material culture studies and consumption anthropology through studying anthropological texts and doing fieldwork (in the city). Processes of appreciation and devaluation of consumer practices are shown as integral part of emphasizing differences in urban societies. The importance of materiality in urban contexts will become unveiled on different social levels and ranks.

The methodology of the course includes:
+ short input sequences
+ presentation of documentations and videos
+ discussion of anthropological texts, text & film analysis
+ topical working groups with particular assignments (e.g. fieldwork, interviews, text/material analysis)
+ all steps supported by blended learning (Moodle)

Assessment and permitted materials

+ adequate attandance
+ individual quality of participation
+ written term paper (to be handed in until 31st of march 2017 latest)

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

Grading criteria:
+ adequate course participation (attendance) (20%)
+ quality of course participation (30%)
+ qualitiy of term paper (50%)

Examination topics

Reading list

BÖNISCH-BREDNICH, Brigitte (2010) (Hrg.) Local lives. Migration and the politics of place, Burlington, VT, Ashgate.
MILLER, Daniel. (ed.). 2002. Consumption: critical concepts in the social sciences. Volumes 1-4. London, Routledge.
MILLER, Daniel. 2008. The comfort of things. Cambridge [u.a.], Polity.
DASTON, Lorraine. (ed.) 2004. Things that talk: object lessons from art and science. New York, NY, Zone Books.
EDWARDS, Elizabeth/ GOSDEN, Chris/ PHILLIPS, Ruth B. (2006). “Introduction” In: EDWARDS, Elizabeth et al. (eds.), Sensible Objects. Colonialism, Museums and Material Culture. Oxford & New York/ Berg Publishers: 1-31.
GRAVES-BROWN, Paul (2000). “Introduction” In: ders. (ed.), Matter, Materiality and Modern Culture. London & New York, Routledge: 1-9.
KALTMEIER, Olaf (2011) (Hrg.) Selling Ethnicity – Urban Cultural Politics in the Americas. Burlington, VT, Ashgate.
KOPYTOFF, Igor (2001). “The Cultural Biography of Things: Commoditization as Process” In: Miller, Daniel (ed.), Consumption - Critical Concepts in the Social Sciences, Vol. III [Disciplinary approaches to consumption]. London & New York, Routledge: 9-33.
MILLER, Daniel (2005). “Materiality: An Introduction” In: ders. (ed.), Materiality. Durham & London, Duke University Press: 1-50.

Association in the course directory

Last modified: Mo 07.09.2020 15:40