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Course Contents

On this page, you can find the contents of several courses such as Introduction to Sociology, Qualitative Research Methods, Social-Cultural Anthropology.

SOC 101 - Introduction to Sociology

This course aims students to gain insight of introductory level of the discipline of sociology. It focuses on the way of sociological understanding about the world. The students are led to think social phenomena occurring in daily based relations and to understand that these are moulded by the cultures and social forces. The students learn how society influences individuals’ lives though they are assumed to have choices independently. Sociology attempts to give meanings to common sense by questioning basic assumptions of how daily life is structured. The course directs students to think themselves from the familiar routines so as to look at them in a new perspective. The students explore the place of sociology in modern and post-modern societies. The relationships among the social institutions are critically examined. Sociological issues in distinct societies and geographies are dealt accordingly on the basis of socio-cultural basis.

SOC 204 – Qualitative Research Methods

Qualitative methods in social sciences enable us to obtain qualified, deep information about societies, cultures and individuals. During the term, students will become familiar with the basic tools and concepts of qualitative social research. They will acquaint with qualitative research techniques, such as narrative, confession, ethnography, case study, focus group, oral history, in order to gain deep insights in our understanding of the human condition. Students taking this course, will also be able to design and implement their own qualitative research projects.

ANTH 202 – Social-Cultural Anthropology

This course provides an introduction to some of the central conceptual and methodological discussions in social-cultural anthropology. Beside a historical understanding about the discipline, through ethnographic examples, this course explores key themes in social-cultural anthropology like culture, race, ethnicity, gender and religion, and their intertwined relationship in order to understand the social differences in society, heterogeneity of social structure and the structures of social relationships and belief systems that operate in different cultural settings. With this outlook, the aim of the course is to offer an understanding of what an anthropological perspective on our experiences is and how it would help us to develop a critical engagement with the world we live in. This course would provide students to understand the tremendous variety of human experiences (cultural, ethnic, racial, gendered, class, religious), and their relationship to social, political, economic, and historical contexts. Thus, the students would develop the ability to guide people by taking into account the cultural diversity, contextual differences in experiences and power relations.

SOC 301 – Classical  Sociological Theory

This class aims to present key classical theoretical traditions that set up the foundations of sociology. During the course, students will be asked to read and discuss selections from the works of great scholars whose theories has guided the discipline. Founding fathers, such as Ibn Khaldun, Tocqueville, and Comte, Durkheim, Marx, Weber and their contributions will be dealt within their historical contexts by focusing on their basic assumptions and implications. Since, sociological theories are logical constructions with empirical implications, making the social world understandable students during the course, will learn how to grasp the internal logic of a theory and how to apply it real social situations.

SOC 302 – Contemporary Sociological Theory

This class aims to present contemporary sociological theories vis a vis contemporary issues. During the course, students will be asked to read and discuss selections from the works of key contemporary sociologists whose theories has dominated the filed. Authors such as Michel Foucault, Pierre Bourdieu, Anthony Giddens, Jürgen Habermas, Niklas Luhmann and their contributions will be dealt within their historical contexts by focusing on their basic assumptions and implications. Since, sociological theories are logical constructions with empirical implications, making the social world understandable as well as rendering it meaning, students ,during the course, will learn how to grasp the internal logic of a theory and how to apply it real social situations.

SOC 403 – Khaldunian Sociology I

In this course, firstly, Ibn Khaldun and his era will be introduced to the students. In addition, they will be engaged with the basic concepts of Ibn Khaldun with regard to society, such as, umranasabiyyahbadawah and hadarah. Then it will be aimed to ensure that they can have further discussions on these concepts.

SOC 306 – History of Social Thought in Turkey

This course, as an introduction to social stratification, will address the issue in the context of power, inequality, privileges and social mobility. The course examines the causes of social, economic and political inequalities. Throughout the course, students will be asked to think on why income and wealth as well as education, power and status have been distributed unequally throughout history, why and how these inequalities have changed over time. By means of class analysis, students will have a critical perspective on class and class structures in modern societies.

ANTH 208 – Anthropology of Media

Media and particularly social media have been a very influential and indispensable phenomenon in everyday life of people in contemporary period. This course introduces students how media as representation and as a subjective and collective cultural practice play role during formations and transformations of groups, cultures, societies and relations between them. Students are expected to gain knowledge not only about media theorists and ethnographic researches but also a critical analysis of technologies and cultural practices of various media tools.

ANTH 209 – Cultures of the Middle East

In this course, the region widely known as “Middle East” will be at the centre of the discussion during the semester. Various themes, ranging from stereotypes, formation of nation and nation-state and colonialism to the urban life, the concept of death and medical anthropology will be covered from an anthropological perspective, closely examining capillaries of the societies of the region. Rather than focusing on macro approaches interested in the bigger picture, this course aims at developing skills of looking at minute details of everyday life which gives clues about the surrounding political, social and cultural contexts. During the course, challenging the commonplace Eurocentric approach, alternative theoretical perspectives will deeply and in a comparative manner be discussed.

ANTH 210 – Ethnography of Turkey

This course aims to scrutinize and understand the history and community of modern Turkey though available ethnographic research on diverse ethnic and religious communities and groups. At the end of the course students are expected to gain a comprehensive understanding and consciousness about similarities and differences in the multi-ethnic, multi-lingual and multi-cultural patterns of Turkish society with particular focus on history, identity, language, religion, sense of belonging and memory.

ANTH 309 – History of Anthropological Thought I

This course aims to introduce students the founding figures of discipline, theories and ethnographic researches that have constructed histories of anthropology (British, American, French and the others) in the historical process. This course is going to be thought in two terms. Therefore, in the first term, we are going to start talking about early anthropological thoughts in the human history and then continue to explore the formation and emergence of anthropology as a discipline in the late 19th century to the late 20th century.

ANTH 310 – History of Anthropological Thought II

In the second semester, the course continues with discussions on evolutionist, adaptationist, and materialist theories with a particular focus on L. White, J. Steward, M. Harris, and E. B. Leacock. Then, we will examine and talk about discussions on structures, symbols and meaning (C. Levi-Strauss, V. Turner, C. Geertz and M. Douglas) that were heated in the 1960s, 1970 and 1980s. In the last part of the course, we will analyze the major issues and debates (structures, practice, agency and power) that took place in the last three decades in the history of anthropology by examining the contributions of J. Fernandez, S. Ortner, P. Bourdieu, E. Wolf, M. Sahlins, M. Foucault and T. Asad. In this course, students are expected to become familiar with these theorists and anthropologist and to be able to have basic understanding of their thoughts and contributions to the discipline of contemporary anthropology.

ANTH 316 – Anthropology of Emotions

Emotions are one of the subjects that have been missed anthropological and sociological gaze until recently. Emotions as one of the fundamental aspects of human nature have become important phenomena in the public, political environment and spheres of media. This course will provide how sociologists and anthropologists have deal with these phenomena and also look at subjective and collective expressions and display of them. Are they universal or culturally distinctive? This course aims to analyze emotions (love, hate, happiness, sadness, death, anger, fear etc.) as both subjective and collective experiences and cultural practices.

ANTH 407 – Anthropology of State

This course will focus on how we might think anthropologically about state formation, state effects and political violence. This course focuses on the formation of the modern nation-state with a particular focus on hegemony and violence. By providing theoretical discussions on the state formation (Weber, Gramsci, Althusser, Foucault, Agamben) and violence (Benjamin, Arendt, Sartre, Fanon), it aims to develop an anthropological perspective on modern nation-state apparatus and its acts of diverse forms of violence.

ANTH 411 – Anthropology of Islam

This course aims to help students to gain new perspectives and understanding of Islam and diverse forms and meanings of religious practices of Muslims by providing some selected anthropological and ethnographic studies on Islam. The objective of this course is to develop a deeper and anthropological understanding of Islam in the light of theoretical discussions around ideas of “Anthropology of Islam” and “Islamic Anthropology”. At the end of the course, students are expected to have a critical and anthropological understanding of how to study Islam and Muslim communities.

HIST 210 – Nations and Nationalism

What is nation? Is there a one and only definition of the concept? Can nations be traced back to the beginning of history? Or are they invented?
Are they imagined or real? What is the relationship between secularization and nationalism? Are individualism and nationalism necessarily at odds with each other?
In this course, in the light of these and these kinds of questions, the human communities, so-called nations, and the ideology of nationalism will be deeply discussed. Starting from enlightenment, after going into details of modernization and secularization process, the relationship between these processes and the rise of nationalism will be elaborated. Regarding theories of nationalism, the approaches to nations as something deeply rooted in history and the perspectives treating them as modern phenomena will compared and contrasted. In this regard, students will be expected to read the works of critical scholars of the field namely, Ernest Gellner, Ellie Kedourie, Benedict Anderson, Eric Hobsbawm and Benedict Anderson. Lastly, the complicated and ambiguous relationship between religion and nationalism will be discussed in the light of different perspectives.

SOC 315 – Sociology of Everyday Life in the Late Ottoman Empire

This course aims to cover the everyday life in the late Ottoman Empire focusing on some specific themes with a sociological perspective. First and foremost, during the semester the merge of history and sociology as modern social sciences will be at the heart of the discussions. Students will be urged to take a deeper look at the capillaries of the society of a declining Empire. From religious life to family, from the change in the conception of time to the surveillance practices through coffeehouses a diverse range of topics will be covered. In addition, all the discussions will be linked to the contemporary times, specifically Turkish context, and students are going to be urged to make comparisons informed by a theoretical perspective to which they are exposed in the other classes.

HIST 487 – Revolutions in History

The aim of this course is to enable students to develop a critical point of view in understanding the major revolutions. Within the scope of present theories, the course will examine major revolutions ranging from the great French Revolution to the Russian revolution, from the Chinese revolution to the present-day Islamic revolution of İran. Since revolutions usually accompanied by wars / or internal conflicts, the course will adopt a historical approach to the interrelated phenomena of revolution, war, and internal conflict. The main purpose of this course is to understand the causes and, consequences the revolutions and their roles in the transformation of societies and regimes.

SOC 205 – Gender

This course aims to document and discuss theoretical arguments on the notions of social gender and society through a sociological-anthropological perspective. The relationship between gender roles, religion and society are going to be scrutinized while main concepts and theories are being introduced in the class.

SOC 206 – Feminist Thought

This course will provide general arguments, ideologies and theories about gender, gender relations and inequalities with a critical and sociological perspective. It will cover development of feminist thought through analysis of different works, schools and traditions from a variety of disciplinary perspectives.

SOC 207 – Social Change

The purpose of this course is to enable students to develop a capacity of analyzing classical and contemporary sociological theories with regard to social change. Students of this course will be able to understand theoretical approaches to social, economic, political and cultural change developed since 19th century within interdisciplinary frameworks. The course aims to cultivate in students a good grasp of key concepts and analytical perspectives that they will be able to understand changes in contemporary societies at global, national, local and individual level.

SOC 208 – Economy and Society

The aim of this course is to make students familiar with economic sociology. As known, economic sociology based on the assumption that analyzing economy separate from other social processes is fundamentally wrong and goes against the very nature of human condition. During the course, students will learn how to look at and how to analyze the multiple interplays of economy, society, individuals, groups and organizations. The course will develop students’ capacities for critical thinking and analysis of capitalism from the dawn of capitalism to the present recent discussions on globalization.

SOC 406 – Historical Sociology

This course, as expectedly, sits at the intersection of two disciplines of social science, namely, History and Sociology and it aims to integrate the historical analysis as a critical dimension to the sociological inquiry. During the course, this perspective will be reflected in various questions of social science. On the one hand, students will be introduced the works of the prominent scholars of the field, such as, Theda Skocpol, Peter Evans and Michael Mann, more contemporary and critical accounts will also be discussed. Another objective of the course will be demonstrating novelty and modernity of some concepts such as nation and nation-state by elaborating their historical roots. Last but not least, the emergence and gradual predomination of capitalism as an all-encompassing economic system across the world will be at the center of the class discussion. As a social and political reaction to capitalism, the rise of working class and the social movements based on the social discontents will also be discussed.

SOC 216 – Sociology of Childhood and the Family

What is childhood and what is the role of family in society? This course focuses on children and family in society in a comparative perspective. Ideas regarding the status and role of children have changed over time in most societies. The first part of the course will look at how children were thought of in the past. The idea of the child and childhood has taken on a particular image in modern society, from the idea of an idyllic age of childhood innocence, to a concentration on children as social problems. Families, and the role of family, can also be said to have undergone significant changes since the turn of the last century, in both developed and developing societies. These changes involve the status of women, changes to their role as mothers, as well as changes in the role of men, as fathers. In what ways are the definitions of family expanding, and what are the possible consequences of this expanding definition for children and for society? The areas under review and comparison include children and childhood, parenthood and the status of women, working mothers, and the status of men as fathers, divorce and changing family forms. Different theoretical perspectives will be explored, and there will be a review of some of the core texts relevant to the weekly topics as well as additional course materials which may not strictly speaking be sociological literature. This course will help students to further develop their skills as critical thinkers and to reflect on how a comparative perspective might lead to a deeper and more nuanced understanding of childhood, parenthood and the role of family in different societies.

SOC 309 – Sociology of Religion

This course aims to explore the theory and concepts centrral to the sociological study of religion in modern societies. In initial stage, methodological and theoretical issues in this study field will be sketched. And developmental stages of sociology of religion will be dealt, in particular, taking into consideration of the socio-political changes in Western Europe. Students will be guided to discuss the theoretical aspects of sociology of religion. Religion as a sociological research object will be scrutinized in modern and post-modern societies pertaining to its place and function and its relations with other social institutions. In addition, this subject will also open the doors to understand the multiple modernities particularly in the eastern nations. In regard to this, the processes of various societies will be dealt in a comparative approach. The place of religion will be an inevitably taken into consideration in all these discussions as well. Since the regaining prominence of the discussion upon the revival of religiosity as a social force in various societies, it has become an inevitable subject to challenge secularization and modernization.

SOC 310 – Social Stratification

This course, as an introduction to social stratification, will address the issue in the context of power, inequality, privileges and social mobility. The course examines the causes of social, economic and political inequalities. Throughout the course, students will be asked to think on why income and wealth as well as education, power and status have been distributed unequally throughout history, why and how these inequalities have changed over time. By means of class analysis, students will have a critical perspective on class and class structures in modern societies.

SOC 311 – Political Sociology

This discipline stands at the intersection of political science and sociology. Therefore, during the course, political power and the societal dynamics having an impact upon on power will be deeply discussed. In addition, how the conflicts between the social groups are reflected in politics will be analyzed together with students. Students will be expected to apply theories discussed in classes especially to contemporary Turkish politics.

SOC 312 – Education and Society

Relationship between education and society will be broadly discussed in this course with a specific emphasis upon the social identities of those who can receive better education. Students will be urged to think and analyze Turkish case keeping in the mind whether social backgrounds of the students have an impact on their school lives. At the end of the course they will be able to develop an understanding regarding education in modern societies.

SOC 318 – Social Movements

Social movements have long been a subject of Sociology. In this course, following questions will be pursued: How are they triggered? What are the dynamics behind the social movements? Is there a pattern regarding the way they are spread around the world? During the course major social movements, such as, civil rights and women’s rights will be explored in the light of relevant theories.

SOC 409 – Migration and Refugees

Migration and refugee studies have become great academic concern in our country as well as in the world. Millions of people forced to leave their homes, due to internal conflicts and wars, trying to flee, with great difficulties, to the countries where they will feel safe. For Turkey, as well as for the rest of the world, the issue of migration and refugees has become a human tragedy, and it will be so for foreseeable future. For this reason, the scope of this course will cover the subjects such as history of war, migration, refugee crisis, poverty and displacement. During the course, students will be given ample examples of sociological and anthropological researches, using ethnographic, qualitative and quantitative methods, in order to equip them with insights and understanding into the field.

SOC 410 – Urban Studies

The purpose of this course is to provide students with a sociological perspective on the rise and development of cities, and urbanization process in a historical perspective. Students will learn how to approach urbanization within a perspective linked to developments in economy, industry and politics. Thus, equipped with theoretical discussions, students will be able to investigate how urbanization affects different societal forms and create uniformity in modern times from a critical perspective.

SOC 413 – Citizenship and Human Rights

In this course, students will be introduced with the concepts of citizenship and human rights as well as their historical roots. Within this framework, the origin an emergence of the idea of city and citizenship will be discussed. The critical relationship between human rights and citizenship will be analyzed along with the discussions around the ideas of universalism and relativism.