Producing and Performing Anthropology
(ANTH 313) – Spring 2023

This course project examines the various modes through which anthropology can be and has been performed and produced. Partially exploring the historical relationship between film, museum curation, and ethnography, while also looking toward how anthropology has verged into other media such as the audiovisual and digital, this course pairs reading ethnographic text, theoretical reflections on narrative, and reflections political-artistic praxis with practical projects, which could take a variety of media forms. What does it mean to make an ethnographic website, for instance, or write a performative ethnographic text? How does this differ from a museum, and how are the history and practices of curation related to anthropology? How do the ethics and practices of anthropology and aural media such as radio and podcasts differ in form or in modes of storytelling?


How can today’s anthropologists, artists, curators, performers, and storytellers of other sorts sit in the intersections and disjunctures of their various fields, and make sense of shared desires for non-extractive, non-exploitative storytelling? This project and the courses and work that take place within its auspices are one mode into asking these questions. While we may not come to any answers, this collective exploration of anthropology and its intersections with the arts and forms of public culture seeks to center these questions and develop a collective and collaborative praxis.