The course focuses on the ecology of human societies –human-environment relationships, with reference to cultural ecology and issues surrounding sustainable development. The ecology of human societies is about connections between ecological and human social, cultural, and organizational processes. Based on selected works of ecological anthropologists, this course focuses on the dynamic relationships between human cultures and their ecological environments. It uses basic concepts of anthropology, including the concept of culture as a dynamic system of learned behaviours and beliefs, to better understand how human beings adapt to and change their physical and social surroundings.
INTENDED AUDIENCE : UG and PG students of Humanities and Social Sciences, Sciences and Engineering
Week 1: Introduction: Ecology and society; Culture and cultural ecologyWeek 2: Cultural ecology and human ecology: Concepts and MeaningsWeek 3: Human ecology: Theoretical approach; Ecological anthropology perspectivesWeek 4: Models of human ecology; Nature and culture debateWeek 5: Conceptions of natures; Contested domains and boundaries of cultureWeek 6: Paradigms in human—environmental relationsWeek 7: Nature, environment and belief systemsWeek 8: Religion in an age of environmental crisis IWeek 9: Religion in an age of environmental crisis II; Environmental ethics IWeek 10: Environmental ethics IIWeek 11: Natural Resource ManagementWeek 12: Debates on shifting cultivation; Course summary