Kies de Nederlandse taal
Course module: 201100013
Cultural Anthropology 4: globalization and sociocultural complexity
Course infoSchedule
Course code201100013
ECTS Credits7.5
Category / Level2 (Bachelor Elaborating)
Course typeCourse
Language of instructionEnglish
Offered byFaculty of Social Sciences; Undergraduate School Sociale Wetenschappen; Cultural Anthropolgy;
Contact persondr. J.G. de Kruijf
dr. J.G. de Kruijf
Other courses by this lecturer
Contactperson for the course
dr. J.G. de Kruijf
Other courses by this lecturer
Teaching period
4  (25/04/2022 to 01/07/2022)
Teaching period in which the course begins
Time slotD: D (WED-afternoon, Friday)
Study mode
RemarkKnowledge of the English language
Course application processOsiris
Enrolling through OSIRISYes
Enrolment open to students taking subsidiary coursesYes
Waiting listNo
  • Introduction to key concepts and principal theoretical debates concerning globalization and the unprecedented complexity that marks social life today.
  • Introduction to an analytic framework that facilitates the exploration of both the foundations and effects of hypermobility and interconnectedness from an anthropological perspective.
  • Introduction to, and dissection of, cases in which the local (and context specific) impact of global forces manifests.
  • Insight into intertwined processes of cultural reproduction and cultural transformation.
  • Insight into the organization and (re)definition of collectives in contexts of contemporary globalization.
  • Insight into the changing relationship between individuals and social structures/formations as the result of social and economic developments and advancements in the realm of (information) technology.
Although transnational connections, the movement of people and the exchange of capital, goods and ideas, have long colored social life and cultural processes across the world, the magnitude of contemporary globalization is unprecedented. Increasing human diversity, shifts in balances of power, the emergence of new existential insecurities and opportunities, and the accelerated transformation of our life worlds are the inevitable outcome of a blend of recent developments that have determined the context in which global interconnectedness has severely intensified. In particular, the impact of today's globalization relates to the diminish of geopolitical bi-polarity after the Cold War era, the effects of neoliberal economics, the occurrence of global calamities and deterritorialized conflict, and the rapid evolution of especially information and communication technology. This course aims to investigate contemporary globalization and its linkage with some crucial social and cultural processes. Catalysts of globalization and sociocultural complexity will be critically assessed, especially the 'new' media. Furthermore, the effects of global interconnectedness are explored by dissecting phenomena like migration, the upsurge of religious movements, and the rise of transnationalism. Interrelated issues that will also be addressed in the series of lectures involve community formation, identity construction, cultural innovation versus cultural survival, and the shifting relationship between agency and structure. As such, 'Globalization and sociocultural complexity' should be regarded an introduction to current anthropology that logically follows 'Culturele Antropologie 2' in its aim to deepen students' understanding of theoretical approaches to, and the ethnography of, present-day's highly intricate social realities.

Assumed knowledge
Knowledge of the English language
Entry requirements
Prerequisite knowledge
Knowledge of the English language
Required materials
Online in Blackboard
(2013) Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies: Migrant Farmworkers in the United States. Seth M. Holmes, University of California Press ISBN 978-0-520-27514-0
Title:Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies: Migrant Farmworkers in the United States.
Author:Seth M. Holmes
Publisher:University of California Press
(2016) Overheating: An Anthropology of Accelerated Change Thomas H. Eriksen, Pluto Press ISBN 978-0-745-33634-3
Title:Overheating: An Anthropology of Accelerated Change
Author:Thomas H. Eriksen
Publisher:Pluto Press
(2014) Globalization: The Key Concepts (second edition) Thomas H. Eriksen, Bloomsbury ISBN: 978-0-8578-5742-2
Title:Globalization: The Key Concepts (second edition)
Author:Thomas H. Eriksen
Instructional formats


General remarks
Audiovisual material (clips, documentaries etc.) will be presented during lectures

Class session preparation
Reading weekly assigned literature before lectures.



Work group

General remarks
Small workgroup session

Class session preparation
Preparation work-group assignments.

Prelim assignment
Test weight30
Minimum grade5.5

Take-home prelim
Test weight50
Minimum grade5.5

Test weight20
Minimum grade5.5

Kies de Nederlandse taal