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Saved by Marnie Thomson
on September 30, 2010 at 2:36:54 pm

Welcome to the Theory + Anthropology Wikipage!

This Wiki was created Fall 2010 by students in the undergraduate Introduction to Cultural Anthropology course taught by Professor Carole McGranahan at the University of Colorado (USA).  As a course project, students worked in groups to create eighteen pages, each devoted to a specific theoretical school or issue in anthropology.  The site covers the historical breadth of the discipline of anthropology from early evolutionary theories to a range of contemporary theories and developments.


Working closely with graduate student instructors—Somraj Basu, Rachel Fleming, Ben Joffe, and Marnie Thomson, all PhD. students in the University of Colorado’s Department of Anthropology—teams of undergraduate students collaboratively researched, wrote, and edited entries on the following anthropological theories, schools of thought, or focused bodies of literature:


  • Applied Anthropology
  • Boasian Anthropology
  • Culture and Personality
  • Cultural Ecology
  • Cultural Evolution
  • Feminist Anthropology
  • Functionalism
  • Globalization and Transnationalism
  • Linguistic Anthropology
  • Marxism & Political Economy
  • Poststructuralism
  • Practice Theory
  • Structural-Functionalism
  • Structuralism
  • Symbolic and Interpretive Anthropology
  • The Historic Turn
  • The Reflexive Turn
  • World System: Colonialism and Development


Each page has four main subjects: Main Points, Key Figures, Key Texts, and Critiques.  We collectively understand theory in anthropology to be always on the move, whether it is moving in new directions altogether or taking old questions into new domains.  We also consider this list of topics to be both partial and situated, as one possible way to see the discipline of anthropology over time and in the present, as well as to envision it into the future. 


The initial impetus for this Wikipage came from Professor McGranahan’s frustration at not being able to find up-to-date online resources on anthropological theories for her undergraduate students, especially with regard to contemporary or post-1970s theory.  We therefore hope this Wikipage will be useful to students everywhere and contribute to the general demystification of theory for anthropology students.


Finally, in the spirit of the broader Wiki movement, we invite you to join in this collaborative project.  Add, question, edit, comment, share what you know, or want to know, about theory in anthropology.  Thank you.




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