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ANTH225 Rites of Passage: Death, Grief and Ritual

An introduction to the anthropological analysis of responses to death and dying, drawing on cross-cultural case studies and relevant anthropological theories of grief, mourning and funerary practice.

This paper contextualises a variety of historical and contemporary responses to death and critically examines the development of 'modern' death practices.


Paper is offered in yearly rotation with ANTH 228 Anthropology of Religion.

Paper title Rites of Passage: Death, Grief and Ritual
Paper code ANTH225
Subject Anthropology
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points
Teaching period Second Semester
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $886.35
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $3,766.35

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ANTH 103 or ANTH 105 or 54 points.
ANTH 325
Schedule C
Arts and Music
This paper is designed for students with and without strong backgrounds in Anthropology.
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Research.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
  • Understand some of the seminal anthropological approaches to the study of death and dying
  • Relate intra- and inter-personal engagements with death and dying to broader social and cultural contexts of death and dying
  • Critically discuss contemporary anthropological debates surrounding death and dying
  • Introduce students to interplay between anthropological theories of death and theoretical analysis
Teaching staff

Dr Susan Wardell


All readings on e reserve.

Teaching Arrangements

One 2 hour lecture per week plus one tutorial per week.

Mixture of both internal assessment and exam.

Course outline

Available on Blackboard from start of semester

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Second Semester

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Wednesday 14:00-15:50 28-34, 36-41


Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend one stream from
A1 Thursday 13:00-13:50 29-34, 36-41
A2 Thursday 14:00-14:50 29-34, 36-41
A3 Thursday 15:00-15:50 29-34, 36-41