Any great books on urban anthropology? In addition, what could I do with a Deviant Behavior degree?
August 22, 2010 10:11 AM   Subscribe

Any great books on urban anthropology? In addition, what could I do with a Deviant Behavior degree?

I'm a Deviant Behavior and Social Control major and I look forward to using this degree into anthropology - specifically, urban anthropology. I do plan on getting my masters and possibly a Ph.D.

I was wondering if there is any great books on urban anthropology or any great introductory books on anthropology or any great anthropology books in general.

I'm very eager to understand many aspects of anthropology as I'm easily interested in anything involving socio-cultural anthropology. So, I want to get a better understanding of it so I could be an urban anthropologist hopefully in the future.

And my second question, what can I do with a Deviant Behavior and Social Control degree? According to the major's description:

"The major in Deviant Behavior and Social Control (DBSC) is designed to provide students with a basic interdisciplinary understanding of important social problems and institutional responses to treat and control them. This foundation is enhanced by a comprehensive understanding of cultural variation and macro- and micro-social and historical contexts as these apply to human conflict. This major also teaches students the ethnographic and ethnological perspectives and skills used in professional field research, while maintaining strong interdisciplinary content. The DBSC major prepares students to be professionally effective in diverse and challenging fields including social services, protective and corrective services, probation, parole, community reintegration and treatment. The research, writing, and interdisciplinary theoretical training provide majors with the background necessary for graduate programs in social work, law, or the social sciences. The core requirements pertain to theory ethnographic methods, cross-cultural research and analysis, while electives demonstrate applications of both theory and method to particular problems."

I'm not very interested in law or social work, though, I may reconsider and work on some aspects of social work. Any ideas?
posted by delasoull to Education (8 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
 
Urban anthropologists often work for urban planning agencies or consulting firms, as well as marketing, etc. You could also work with government agencies.

Amazon list.
posted by Ideefixe at 10:27 AM on August 22, 2010


You really want to look at Righteous Dopefiend.
posted by rtha at 10:39 AM on August 22, 2010


Sudhir Venkatesh's "Gang Leader for a Day" has gotten a lot of buzz. He's a sociologist not an anthropologist though.
posted by Bwithh at 10:45 AM on August 22, 2010


You might be more interested in sociology. I know that, traditionally, sociology has dealt with more "urban life" types of issues, whereas anthropology has a longer history of more global, rural/remote type stuff. This is no longer true today, but as a result of that tendency you will probably find more books about this subject in the "sociology" heading of a bookstore, and more courses related to this in sociology departments of universities.

Also, for what it's worth, the sociology department of my alma mater taught courses on deviant behavior and social control, while for the most part those terms were never even used in my anthropology courses. Even when the material overlapped (and anthropology and sociology tend to overlap quite a bit), the two disciplines have different approaches to dealing with the material. We did have a lot of classes on urban anthropology or which dealt with that stuff in an interdisciplinary way along with the sociology and urban studies departments - probably because I went to college in the biggest and most urban city in the USA, which meant that it was a popular area of specialization within all our social sciences departments. I'm not sure how other universities deal with it.
posted by Sara C. at 10:59 AM on August 22, 2010


I studied deviance and criminology heavily as a sociology major.

Many years later, I became a criminal defense attorney.
posted by mikeand1 at 12:00 PM on August 22, 2010


In Search of Respect by Phillippe Bourgois, or any of his other work.
posted by belau at 4:37 PM on August 22, 2010


I think Dan Rose's Black American Street Life: South Philadelphia, 1969-1971, is an overlooked masterpiece. It changed the way I look at doing ethnography, it changed the way I thought about the inner city, and I don't think the fact that it was researched 40 years ago makes it any less a valuable read today.
posted by drlith at 6:46 PM on August 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


City of Quartz would probably interest you. I haven't read it for years, but I was very impressed when I came across it.
posted by pompomtom at 8:48 PM on August 22, 2010


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