ANTH 232
Town and Gown: Investigating the Relationship of College and Community Spring 2020
Division II
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Class Details

Team-taught by an anthropologist and a journalist, this course investigates the relationship between Williams College and the surrounding communities of Northern Berkshire County via ethnographic/journalistic research conducted by students. The course will look at several case studies centered on “town-gown” relations in different eras and locations in order to contextualize and provide comparative material for understanding the relationship of Williams to its neighboring communities. Among the topics to be considered and possibly investigated will be the social and economic effects of colleges on local communities, the role of alcohol and athletics in town/gown relations, and how the increasing corporatization of academic institutions has changed the nature of town-gown interactions and the place and role of institutions of higher education in their communities. The focus of the course will be on student research, and a large percentage of class time will be devoted to learning the basic techniques of ethnographic and journalistic research, including interviewing, oral historical research, survey research, and participant-observation. Each student will conduct a major research project of their own devising, which will culminate in an investigative report and a public presentation.
The Class: Format: seminar
Limit: 15
Expected: 15
Class#: 4052
Grading: no pass/fail option, no fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: class participation, research exercises, major ethnographic research paper
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preferences: Anthropology and Sociology majors
Distributions: Division II

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