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ANTH210 Translating Culture

An introduction to the political and ethical implications of anthropological representation combining readings of selected ethnographic films, books and anthropological theory.

This paper explores the conventional and creative ways that anthropologists ‘speak’ to a range of audiences – including other scholars and the public – through mediums including books, articles, photo essays, films, blogs and podcasts.

Ethnographic writing often employs a rich, narrative and sensory style; its evocative and layered approach helping us understand and interpret other lifeways and worldviews. Meanwhile, in a mediascape of soundbites, ethnographic film is known for longer scenes, dwelling with people, places and events. Exploring such approaches, in this paper we ask questions including:

  • What is truth, and how do anthropologists seek to capture and challenge it?
  • How do anthropologists show greater meaning from specific details, linking the particular with the general and back again?
  • How do anthropologists advocate for change?

Paper title Translating Culture
Paper code ANTH210
Subject Anthropology
EFTS 0.15
Points 18 points
Teaching period Semester 1 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $913.95
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $4,073.40

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ANTH 103 or ANTH 105 or 54 points
Schedule C
Arts and Music


Teaching staff

Dr Hannah Bulloch

Teaching Arrangements
Lectures and seminars.

Required readings from journal articles and book chapters will be available on eReserve.

Course outline

Will be available on Blackboard at the start of the course.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Lifelong learning, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Ethics, Research.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
Student ethnographers will demonstrate ethical and reflexive skills in cultural translation and high level skills in oral, written, and audiovisual presentations and group discussion. Students will understand the history of ethnographic film making.

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Semester 1

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Monday 11:00-12:50 9-13, 15-16, 18-21


Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend one stream from
A1 Tuesday 14:00-14:50 10-13, 15-21
A2 Tuesday 15:00-15:50 10-13, 15-21