• Description

  • Anthropology 3640


    Professor Dean Saitta

    Email: dsaitta@du.edu

    Spring 2020-- ONLINE

    As current events and the everyday lived experience of individuals confirms, race is an open wound on the American body politic.  Various forms of racism remain prevalent in our society. This is evidenced most recently by dangerous rhetoric around the event that has forced this course out of the classroom and online; namely, the description of COVID-19 as a “foreign” disease, a “Chinese virus”, and the even the “Kung-Flu.”

    This course examines the paleoanthropology of human biological differences; i.e., the differences commonly associated with racial identity and why/how those differences evolved.  Our focus is on the history of thinking about human biological/physical differences, with the ultimate goal of better understanding the nature and sources of differences between groups of human beings. We will consider the uses to which particular conceptions of race have been put in Western culture.  Our examination of racial differences will proceed in light of evolutionary theory, the human fossil record, and cross-cultural anthropological knowledge. Our aim is to examine myth and reality in popular and scientific understandings of race, and the social and political consequences of this knowledge.

    The course contributes to the cultivation of what many scholars are calling “racial literacy.”  Acquiring such literacy is an important step in moving the country toward a more progressive view of human differences that is fundamentally antiracist.

  • Slide Shows

  • Week 2: Introduction & Context

  • Week 2 Slide Show Notes

  • Week 3: Human Evolutionary History

  • Week 3 Slide Show Notes

  • Week 4 Storytelling & Human Evolution

  • Week 4 Slide Show Notes

  • Week 4 Third Theory

  • Week 5 Scientific Racism

  • Week 5 Slide Show Notes

  • Week 6 Early 20th Century

  • Week 6 Slide Show Notes


  • Week 7 Postwar Concepts of Race

  • Week 7 Slide Show Notes

  • Week 8 Radicals & Reactionaries

  • Week 8 Slide Show Notes


  • Week 9 Early 21st Century

  • Week 9 Slide Show Notes

  • Week 10 What's To be Done?

  • Other Course Materials

  • Research Paper Guidelines


  • Course Syllabus

  • Syllabus, Spring 2020

  • Course Readings

  • Course Assignments

  • Week 2 Assignment #1.docx

  • Week 3 Assignment #2.docx

  • Week 4 Assignment #3.docx

  • Week 5 Assignment #4.docx

  • Week 6 Assignment #5.docx

  • Week 7 Assignment #6.docx

  • Week 8 Assignment #7.docx

  • Week 9 Assignment #8.docx

  • Week 10 Final Essay Assignment.docx

  • Completed Assignment Notes

  • Assignment #1

  • Assignment #2

  • Assignment #3

  • Assignment #4

  • Assignment #5

  • Assignment #6

  • Assignment #7

This portfolio last updated: 01-Jun-2020 9:34 AM