The MA in Anthropology and Cultural Politics is an interdisciplinary programme in anthropology, directed at students from a wide range of disciplines in the humanities, social and political sciences, artists, and professionals in the media and cultural sectors.
The objective of the MA is to address contemporary issues in culture and politics from an anthropological perspective, drawing on the commitment of the Department of Anthropology at Goldsmiths to build a public anthropology.
The MA is organised around a critical investigation of the central thematic concepts of its title: 'culture', 'power', and 'politics', as well as 'anthropology' itself.
Each of these terms are posited in this programme as questions for critical reflection and students are encouraged to pursue independent research projects that investigate the meanings attributed to these terms in contemporary social contexts.
The programme is particularly interested in the intersections of 'culture' and 'power', and the consideration of what may be called 'cultural politics'.
- How and when does 'culture' become apprehensible as 'political'?
- How and when does 'power' operate upon or within 'culture'? Is it even tenable to uphold and retain this distinction?
- If so, what are the analytical or interpretive benefits?
- What may be the disadvantages or pitfalls?
- If not, what is implicated in the politicisation of 'culture' or the culturalisation of 'power' and 'politics'?
- How can these concerns be studied in the ongoing struggles over 'culture' in everyday life?
In addition to the core modules, options can be selected from several departments and centres.
Contact the department
If you have specific questions about the degree, contact the Postgraduate Secretary
Modules & structure
The MA is made up of four parts:
- Anthropology and Cultural Politics (30 credits)
- Anthropology Theory (30 credits)
- Option modules [within the Department of Anthropology, or the Departments of English and Comparative Literature, Media & Communications, Politics, Sociology, or Centre for Cultural Studies] (60 credits)
- Dissertation (60 credits)
*Students who have an anthropology background can replace Anthropological Theory with an additional option module.
|Anthropology and Cultural Politics||30 credits|
|Anthropological Theory||30 credits|
|MA in Anthropology & Cultural Politics Dissertation||60 credits|
Some examples of option modules from the Department of Anthropology are listed below. In addition, modules can be selected from several other departments and centres including Cultural Studies, English, Media and Communications, and Sociology.
|Anthropology of Rights||30 credits|
|Anthropology and Gender Theory||15 credits|
|Critical Voices in Development||30 credits|
|History and Anthropology||15 credits|
|Anthropology and Representation||15 credits|
|Anthropology and the Visual II||30 credits|
|Anthropology of Art I||30 credits|
|Anthropology of Art II||15 credits|
|Anthropology of Health and Medicine I||30 credits|
|Anthropology of Religion||15 credits|
|Anthropological Research Methods||30 credits|
|Economic and Political Anthropology I||30 credits|
|Economic and Political Anthropology II||30 credits|
|Ethnographic Film and Cinema Studies||30 credits|
|Environmental Anthropology||30 credits|
- Indian & Peasant Politics in Amazonia
- Ethnography of a Selected Region II (Caribbean)
Dissertation – a thorough critical discussion of existing knowledge in a relevant area; reports; take-home papers. Options may require a presentation or production of visual material.
Download the programme specification for this degree to find out more about what you'll learn and how you'll be taught and assessed.
Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.
Anthropology at Goldsmiths is ranked: 6th in the UK for the quality of our research** 36th in the world for this subject area***
Investigate a variety of fascinating areas that have real relevance to modern life.
As a department we’re interested in pushing the discipline forward. We’re known for pioneering new fields including visual anthropology and the anthropology of modernity. And we tackle other contemporary issues like urban planning, development, emotions and aesthetics, and new social movements.
Find out more about the Department of Anthropology.
**Research Excellence Framework 2014, Times Higher Education research intensity subject rankings
***QS World University Rankings by subject 2016
Skills & careers
The programme is great preparation for any role that involves research and communication. Graduates have pursued opportunities in journalism, other media, policy, education and public debate; they have also gone on to research degrees, either at Goldsmiths or elsewhere.
Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.
You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least second class standard in a relevant/related subject.
You might also be considered for some programmes if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate level.
We accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.
English language requirements
If English isn’t your first language, you’ll need to meet our English language requirements to study with us.
For this programme we require:
IELTS 6.5 (with a minimum of 6.5 in the written test and no individual test lower than 6.0)
If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for postgraduate-level study.
How to apply
Please note that this programme will not be running for the 2016/17 academic year.
You apply directly to Goldsmiths using our online application system.
Before submitting your application you’ll need to have:
- Details of your education history, including the dates of all exams/assessments
- The email address of your referee who we can request a reference from, or alternatively an electronic copy of your academic reference
- A personal statement – this can either be uploaded as a Word Document or PDF, or completed online
- If available, an electronic copy of your educational transcript (this is particularly important if you have studied outside of the UK, but isn’t mandatory)
You'll be able to save your progress at any point and return to your application by logging in using your username/email and password.
When to apply
We accept applications from October for students wanting to start the following September.
We encourage you to complete your application as early as possible, even if you haven't finished your current programme of study. It's very common to be offered a place that is conditional on you achieving a particular qualification.
Late applications will only be considered if there are spaces available.
If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an earlier application deadline.
Admission to many programmes is by interview, unless you live outside the UK. Occasionally, we'll make candidates an offer of a place on the basis of their application and qualifications alone.
Find out more about applying.