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Words in culture

General data

Course ID: 4018-KONW56 Erasmus code / ISCED: 08.0 / (0220) Humanities (except languages), not further defined
Course title: Words in culture Name in Polish: Słowo w kulturze
Organizational unit: Faculty of "Artes Liberales"
Course groups:
ECTS credit allocation (and other scores): (not available)
view allocation of credits
Language: Polish
Type of course:

obligatory courses

Short description:

The aim of the course is to introduce problems and issues of anthropology of the word as a perspective for considering the specificity and changes of cultural trends with the help of analyses of historically and culturally diverse linguistic practices and the word media which contribute to their development.

Full description:

The following issues will be discussed:

- language and culture (language as a “symbolic form”; a tool of accumulation and transformation of culture)

- language and the image of the world (discussions on the hypothesis of linguistic relativism)

- the notion of communication and evolution of its understanding, anthropological tools for studying communication (situational and cultural context of speaking, restricted and extended code, high and low context of communication, communication as a cultural action)

- the phatic function of speech (conversation rituals and ceremonies, their social and cultural functions)

- theory of writing according to W. J. Ong, M. McLuhan, and J. Goody as a tool for studying culture and its changes, discussions on theory of writing and attempts at a revision

- orality and oral culture as models for studying culture, oral practices of the word (on the example of myths, magic, shamanic practices)

- literacy and the related cultural changes, written linguistic practices (on the example of personal diaries and graffiti)

- print, the discourse of print culture (on the example of the language of propaganda)


Antropologia słowa. Zagadnienia i wybór tekstów, oprac. Grzegorz Godlewski, Andrzej Mencwel, Roch Sulima, red. i wstęp Grzegorz Godlewski, Wyd. UW, Warszawa 2003.

Learning outcomes:

Upon completing the practical course students will be able to:

- analyse linguistic practices using anthropological tools, indicating their social and cultural functions

- understand the importance of language issues for contemporary reflection on culture

- analyse diverse cultural trends and practices in the perspective of historical changes in word media

Assessment methods and assessment criteria:

- regular attendance

- active participation in classes

- a yearly project

This course is not currently offered.
Course descriptions are protected by copyright.
Copyright by University of Warsaw.