Materials and Cultural Practices
Dr. Sarit Paz
As the rate of technological innovations and the following transformations increases, materials and objects play a growing role in the constitution of society and culture, and in shaping cultural practices. The study of material culture as a source of information includes various theories and approaches toward the understanding of material culture, its significance as a socio-cultural phenomenon, and the ways in which it shapes cultural practices and being shaped by them. The aim of the seminar is to expose students to the opportunities of research through material culture, and supply them with basic tools for conducting such studies. During the seminar we will discuss various studies on material culture, and explore central theoretical and methodological approaches for analysis and interpretation of material culture. The students will also be asked to conduct small scale studies in their immediate environment, which will offer a hands-on experience of analyzing material culture, and serve as basis for discussions and "reading" objects.