While once associated with small-scale studies of remote societies and places, anthropology today is a dynamic discipline attuned to the massive global changes – human, climatic, ecological, economic – shaping our world. Recognizing the connections and diversities between cultures, societies and species, anthropology brings a holistic yet particularistic approach to contemporary challenges.
The University of Calgary’s Anthropology Department is an animated two-field intellectual community driven by faculty and students alike in a quest to understand our contemporary condition. Embracing anthropology’s traditional integrative approach, we consider humans as they are constructed simultaneously by cultural meanings, social structures, and the biology and ecology of the human species in its evolutionary context.
Our research streams in sociocultural anthropology and primatology offer a rigorous and comprehensive training and research program for undergraduates and graduates alike, ensuring they are exposed to the traditional subdisciplines of anthropology while also being fluent in the problems of one subfield. Through field schools and faculty-driven or independent projects, students are encouraged to engage in research and gain valuable experiences outside of the classroom setting.
As a department, we practice a methodology that makes anthropology distinct from other disciplines: long-term field research, where we engage in direct (for primatologists) and participant (for sociocultural anthropologists) observation. Our commitment to long-term engagement with populations, closely related primate species and environments, is a hallmark of our understanding of the contemporary world and the forces that have created it.