Anthropology is the study of humanity in all of its diversity. It is a fundamentally comparative discipline uniquely positioned at the junctures between the humanities, social sciences, and biological sciences. We are concerned with documenting and analyzing cultural diversity and social change, understanding variation in and across human populations and social formations, as well as interpreting the past through the archaeological investigation of material evidence, both prehistoric and modern. Anthropology is therefore exceedingly well positioned in the study of global social and cultural transformations, since the discipline has always had a global and comparative perspective on the human condition and sees our species as having been “globalizing” all along. Our students are educated in theories and methodologies that prepare them to better understand and engage with diverse and changing experiences of what it means to be human in the contemporary world.
Our faculty is actively engaged in field research throughout the world, including cultural anthropology, ethnography, medical anthropology, and archaeology, with particular expertise in the study of the United States and North America, Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa, and Europe. Students are encouraged to gain firsthand experience in various aspects of anthropological research, both domestically and abroad. On-campus and Houston-area research opportunities are also often available each term.
Building a Future with Anthropology
Some of our students continue onward to graduate training in anthropology, pursuing a Master’s degree or a PhD. However, anthropology provides excellent and necessary intellectual tools for a variety of occupations and pursuits. In a kaleidoscopic contemporary world characterized by complex forms of both cooperation and conflict, our subject matter facilitates cross-cultural competence and awareness. Anthropology is therefore an ideal launching-pad for advanced training or careers in such diverse areas as education, law, medicine, social work, government, policy-making, public health, business, international relations, and more. Anthropology majors regularly find jobs in areas such as: teaching; healthcare; public, private, and nonprofit domestic and foreign service; international business; marketing and advertising; social service agencies dealing with clients of diverse cultural backgrounds; museums and archives; as contract archaeologists for government agencies or private companies; library sciences; forensics; journalism and editorial services; translation and interpreting; research and design, and so forth.