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UCL Anthropology

"The most scientific of the humanities, the most humanistic of the sciences"

UCL Anthropology studies humanity in all its aspects: from our evolution as a species, to our relationship with the material world, and our vast variety of social practices and cultural forms.

Our department is one of only a few broad based anthropology departments in the UK comprised of four sub-sections including Biological Anthropology, Social Anthropology, Material Culture and Medical Anthropology. Our teaching and research reflects the breadth and depth of this cross and interdisciplinary approach.

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Anthropology Blogs

Digital Anthropology in Practice

Monday, 09 July 2018

Jennifer Fu and Gemma Tortella-Procter, MSc. Digital Anthropology at UCL

“What exactly constitutes ‘digital anthropology’?” While the practical projects we worked on may not provide a comprehensive answer to this question (perhaps a ‘comprehensive’ answer doesn’t exist), it provides an idea of the things we care about as digital anthropologists and the direction we hope to push a traditionally text-based discipline in.

As a part of the MSc Digital Anthropology core course, all of the students are given the task and opportunity to “produce a publicly accessible website which will present the results of a mini research project about an instance of digital technology use.” The challenge for the 2017-2018 class was to find a London marketplace and investigate it in the context of its digital mediation.…

New Forms of Ownership and Possession in the Global Economy

Wednesday, 04 July 2018

How do people access things that allow them to ‘live well’? Through what means and by brokerage with which agents are they able to do so? What does it mean for something to ‘bear fruit’, and what is the difference between ‘use’ and ‘possession’? These are some of the questions that were posed by a […]

Does AI Have a Place in the Family Home? UCL Digital Anthropology and Wizzili Explore in Collaboration

Wednesday, 06 June 2018

By Afreen Saulat • MSc Digital Anthropology This research emerges from a partnership between UCL Digital Anthropology and Wizzili, a French AI company, who are building a product that will act ‘as the personal assistant busy parents never knew they needed’. The partnership supported a Masters student, Afreen Salaut, to undertake her dissertation on the… Continue reading Does AI Have a Place in the Family Home? UCL Digital Anthropology and Wizzili Explore in Collaboration

Rebecca Skloot & the Lacks Family on Communication in Science and Medicine

Friday, 18 May 2018

By Rebecca Irons Rebecca Skloot’s 2010 book “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” is one that many of us may be familiar with. An exploration of the human story behind the HeLa cells, the book deals with more than simply an historical account of biomedical research; it is essentially a book about race, bioethics, and...

What will it take to ensure a future liveable earth? – Book Launch of The Anthropology of Sustainability

Wednesday, 09 May 2018

As part of the book launch for The Anthropology of Sustainability, leading anthropologists consider this question – offering unconventional answers and a radical new paradigm for anthropology in the 21st century. Join us for a roundtable discussion with Henrietta Moore, Veronica Strang, Laura Rival, Marc Brightman & Jerome Lewis. This will take place from 16:00-18:00, … Continue reading What will it take to ensure a future liveable earth? – Book Launch of The Anthropology of Sustainability

Young Curators Club Maria Fidelis exhibition

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

What stories lie inside collections? How can we connect historical artefacts to our everyday lives? Can heritage be an object? The UCL Young Curators project brings a group of GCSE students from a local secondary school, Maria Fidelis, to work with the Ethnography Collections and learn a little about what anthropologists do. Housed in the […]

Media Highlight

Refugee Temporalities and the Ethnographic Method - Panel discussion, Friday 9th of March 2018

The panel discussion focuses on the use of the ethnographic method in forced migration studies, looking into the strengths and challenges of doing ethnography in contexts of displacement. Drawing from their respective field sites and their theoretical interests on temporality, speakers and discussants reflect on issues of research positionality, the ethnographic potential to challenge power structures and on the research terminology associated with classifying mobility.