You are in the official 2007-2008 General Catalog for California State University, Fresno.
Department of Anthropology
College of Social Sciences
ROGER M. LA JEUNESSE, Chair
SHERRY McCULLOCH, Administrative Support Coordinator
Peters Business Building, Room 393
Roger M. La Jeunesse, Chair
Franklin Ng, Coordinator for Asian American Studies
Henry D. Delcore
Walter A. Dodd
James J. Mullooly
John H. Pryor
Anthropology is concerned with everything that is human, in all parts
of the world, both present and past. It is unique among the social sciences
in its scope. Most disciplines focus only on modern civilization or concentrate
on single aspects of life, such as government or the economy. Anthropology
is interested in all human societies and views life as a complexly
integrated whole that is more than the sum of its parts. It is the human
experience as a whole that anthropology seeks to understand.
The breadth of anthropology is reflected in its four subfields. Physical anthropology studies biological evolution and how heredity conditions the ways we conduct life. Cultural anthropology, by studying the enormous diversity of lifeways in contemporary cultures throughout the world, attempts to explain both differences and similarities in the way different peoples carry out the process of living. Archaeology explores the human past far beyond the range of written records, using specialized techniques to probe human prehistory. Linguistic anthropology investigates the nature of language and the critical role it has played in developing our unique intellectual capabilities and behavior. The central concept in anthropology is "culture," and it is this vital idea which binds the subfields into an integrated discipline.
Our program has three goals:
- to provide students with a clear conception of human variability and its implications, enabling them to understand and deal with lifestyles other than those of "mainstream America;"
- to provide students with the broad intellectual skills that are essential to the widest range of professional careers;and
- to prepare students to use anthropological concepts in both applied and research careers.
Both the anthropology major and minor offer a varied but well-structured
exposure to all four subfields of the discipline. The major consists of
two parts. The core curriculum introduces both data and theory in a logical
sequence of courses from basic to advanced and includes an introduction
to anthropological fieldwork. The four degree tracks are intended to prepare
students for specific careers in the following areas: education, cultural
resources management, social services, or post-secondary teaching. The minor
is a briefer but balanced survey of the discipline, designed to complement
any major whose graduates need to understand and deal with people from different
Career opportunities for anthropology graduates are increasingly numerous and varied because cultural pluralism and international communication are on the increase. There is a growing need for people with cross-cultural sophistication and an ability to mediate between value systems. Graduates of our department have established successful careers in such fields as personnel work, mental health, social research, education, law enforcement, business, government, and medicine.
Students who contemplate graduate study, whether in anthropology or another field, find that our program is both rigorous and thorough. In fact, anthropological training at the undergraduate level is widely recognized as excellent preparation for advanced degrees in many professional fields. Graduates of this department have completed graduate programs in medicine, law, social work, international business, and international relations, to name a few.
Professional careers in anthropology itself usually require the Ph.D. Enterprising anthropologists throughout the nation have been remarkably successful in securing high-level positions in both government and business, usually under titles other than "anthropologist." These successes indicate that employers at the highest levels appreciate the unique training and capabilities of professional anthropologists. Imaginative anthropologists who can communicate their special abilities should be able to establish rewarding careers in a variety of settings.
Special Resources and Facilities
Directed by professors LaJeunesse and Pryor, the Anthropology Department provides data collection, analysis, and student training in both archaeological and ethnographic studies. Advanced students may also pursue specialized training and research into the chemical composition of archaeological materials in our chemistry laboratory, which is under the supervision of Professor LaJeunesse. C. Kristina Roper manages our contract archaeology program, which provides students with practical experience in public archaeology.