What is the Master of Social and Cultural Anthropology all about?
How do people interpret natural disasters and which role does power play in that context? How does mining transform women’s understanding of sexuality and intimacy? How do diaspora organisations affect the development arena? How do people deal with violence and its consequences? The questions are many and complex.
In the first stage, you are confronted with general questions such as "What is culture?" and "What is identity?". You will study many forms of human agency and consider different ways in which people across the world deal with social problems.
During this first stage, you start developing your own research by looking for a topic and supervisor, developing a research focus and preparing empirical research to support your final master's thesis.
You will deepen and further develop your research skills in the second stage of the programme while conducting research for your master's thesis and participating in the Research Seminar.
Experienced professors and early-career researchers of the faculty's research units (IARA & IMMRC) will introduce you to the most recent developments in anthropology. Your own research interests and focus will inform your choice of electives to round out your programme.
Are you eager to broaden your horizons by completing part of your studies abroad? As an anthropology student you can choose to conduct empirical research - fieldwork - in Belgium, another country, or both.
In the second stage, you have the opportunity to study for one semester at a (non-)European university within the context of the Erasmus exchange programme. The Faculty has agreements with universities in and outside of Europe and also offers various summer schools.
If you are interested in researching social change or development, you can organise fieldwork and an Erasmus exchange within the framework of the European Certificate in Anthropology of Social Dynamics and Development.
Through empirical research, social and cultural anthropology investigates the differences and similarities between cultures. Thus it wants to shed light on the historical, social political and cultural processes that shape society. This master programme wants to both introduce and specialize students into this fascinating domain. This double goal is reflected in the programme's structure. The latter further emphasises
acquiring a critical, social-scientific and anthropological attitude;
acquiring knowledge and skills specific to the discipline (anthropological methods, models, theories, ...). This also implies that students are able to put their specific knowledge and so-called emic perspective to use in an ever changing social debate.
A graduate in the Master of Science in Social and Cultural Anthropology is capable of designing and carrying out original research and communicating its findings. Also, s/he has the ability to critically evaluate existing research. To this purpose, s/he has a solid and active knowledge of anthropological methods and techniques, of the existing cultural and ethnological diversity and of past and current anthropological paradigms, themes and theories.
Graduates of anthropology find employment in numerous areas including: