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Anthropologies of the Future: Critical and Ethnographic Perspectives on Future-Making - Einzelansicht

Veranstaltungsart Seminar Langtext
Veranstaltungsnummer 084885 Kurztext
Semester SoSe 2021 SWS 2
Erwartete Teilnehmer/-innen Studienjahr
Max. Teilnehmer/-innen 25
Sprache englisch
Termine Gruppe: [unbenannt] iCalendar Export für Outlook
  Tag Zeit Rhythmus Dauer Raum Raum-
Lehrperson Status Bemerkung fällt aus am Max. Teilnehmer/-innen
Einzeltermine anzeigen
iCalendar Export für Outlook
Di. 12:00 bis 14:00 woch 13.04.2021 bis 20.07.2021           
Gruppe [unbenannt]:

Zugeordnete Person
Zugeordnete Person Zuständigkeit
Kovac, Uros, Dr. verantwort
Abschluss - Studiengang Sem ECTS Bereich Teilgebiet
Zwei-Fach-Bachelor - Kultur- und Sozialanthropologie (L2 986 6) - 3
Zwei-Fach-Bachelor - Kultur- und Sozialanthropologie (L2 986 13) - 6
Prüfungen / Module
Prüfungsnummer Modul
16003 Seminar Anwendungen - Zwei-Fach-Bachelor Kultur- und Sozialanthrop Version 2013
16003 Betreutes Selbststudium - Zwei-Fach-Bachelor Kultur- und Sozialanthrop Version 2006
Zuordnung zu Einrichtungen
Fachbereich 08 Geschichte/Philosophie

Anthropologies of the Future: Critical and Ethnographic Perspectives on Future-Making

Instructor: Uros Kovac


Location: online, via Zoom

Time: weekly, Tuesdays 12:00-14:00 (see detailed timetable below)

Consultation hours: Thursdays 12:00-14:00, or by appointment, online, via Zoom.

Email: uros.kovac.bg@gmail.com

All readings available on WWU Learnweb: https://www.uni-muenster.de/LearnWeb/learnweb2/




Climate change, environmental disasters, economic crises, viral pandemics – the future seems to be in a crisis. How do human beings plan, predict, fear, and hope for the future in times of such uncertainty? People in all societies have always oriented themselves to the future in their everyday practices, and anthropologists have for long dealt with issues of time and temporality. And yet, anthropologists have predominantly sought to understand human beings through their past – habits, customs, heritage, memory, history – and rarely explicitly dealt with their concerns and prospects for the future. Only recently have they started developing analytical tools to study future-making. How do anxieties about the uncertainty of the future shape the present? How are people’s views and practices shaped by their aspirations for a better future? How can anthropologists study possibilities and potentialities, social forms that have not (yet) materialized? This reading course about ethnographic and critical approaches to future-making tackles these and similar questions.

The first part of the course deals with orientations, both of anthropologists and their interlocutors: how and why are anthropologists increasingly orienting themselves towards studying the future, and what does it mean to study people’s future orientations. The second part deals with key terms in the anthropology of the future, such as anticipation, expectation, hope, and destiny. We will read and discuss key sections from the recent volume ”The Anthropology of the Future” (Bryant and Knight 2019), as well as articles with additional or contrasting perspectives, to build a vocabulary for thinking anthropologically about future and future-making. The third part deals with some specific recent topics in anthropological studies of future-making, such as practices of speculation and notions of hope in capitalism, and notions of futurity in social movements and activism.

Course Work

Class preparation

This seminar demands regular active class participation. All participants are expected to read the assigned literature (two articles or book chapters per week) and prepare questions before attending class. These questions are intended to enhance the understanding of the texts. Before each session, you have to start a forum topic in LearnWeb, and in a message briefly summarize the key points of the readings (one or two sentences per text) and write at least two questions about the readings. These could be questions for class discussion, critical ideas about the texts, or specific questions about parts of texts that you did not understand. Since the forum is visible to everyone, you can also reply to other participants’ questions and continue discussing, like you would on any online forum. You need to upload the summaries and questions well before the weekly sessions, i.e. no later than Mondays 19:00 (one day before the online Zoom sessions), so that the instructor and session chairs can read them on time and include them in the session discussions.

Chairing sessions

You act on a rotating basis as chairpersons of the class. In the first introductory session (Tuesday, 13/04/2021), all participants will be assigned a session to chair. As a chairperson, either as an individual or in a small team, you are expected to give a 20-30 minute presentation, in which you summarize the assigned readings, situate them in their broader anthropological context, answer the clarifying questions from other participants, prepare critical questions about the texts, and encourage discussion. You are very much encouraged to present materials beyond the readings (for example short audio and video materials), and ask questions beyond the assigned readings, but related to the topic of the session. You should have a Zoom consultation meeting with the instructor at least two days before the session you are chairing, to discuss the presentation and the critical questions. For instance, if you are assigned to chair a session ”Capacity to Aspire” you need to read the literature and prepare ideas for your presentation well in advance, and then discuss them with me in a Zoom meeting on a Friday before the session.


You are expected to write three short essays throughout the seminar, each between 800 and 1200 words long. In each essay, you are expected to write up a critical reflection on the course readings and topics or answer a question posed by the instructor. See the timetable below for details on deadlines. You will receive feedback on your writing.


Eine verbindliche Anmeldung zu der Lehrveranstaltung mit Name, Vorname, Matrikel-Nr. und Veranstaltungs-Nr. erfolgt per E-Mail an ifethno@uni-muenster.de (im Geschäftszimmer bei Frau Osterheider) bis zum 15. März 2021. Es sind nur begrenzt Seminarplätze vorhanden (s. max. Teilnehmerzahl oben). Sobald die Anmeldeliste voll ist, werden weitere Anmeldungen auf die Nachrückerliste gesetzt.

Nicht belegbar mit
Nr. Beschreibung
084884 Forschungskolloquium
084823 Forschungskolloquium

Keine Einordnung ins Vorlesungsverzeichnis vorhanden. Veranstaltung ist aus dem Semester SoSe 2021 , Aktuelles Semester: WiSe 2022/23