Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2023-2024 (archived)

Module ANTH30K7: Humans, Animals, Livelihoods and Wellbeing

Department: Anthropology

ANTH30K7: Humans, Animals, Livelihoods and Wellbeing

Type Open Level 3 Credits 10 Availability Not available in 2023/24 Module Cap None. Location Durham


  • ANTH2051 Politics and Economics OR ANTH2141 Global Health and Disease OR ANTH2241 Environment, Climate, and the Anthropocene


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • To introduce social theory relating to multispecies relations
  • To explore multispecies ethnography and consider its relevance to understanding economic transformations and their implications for health and wellbeing.
  • To provide students with a set of critical tools to reflect on sociality beyond the human and human-centric relations.


  • This module will draw on ethnographic literature to examine human relations with animals and how these are changing forms of work, labour, and livelihoods, as well as the implications of entanglements with other species for health and wellbeing.
  • The module will draw on intellectual resources from Economic Anthropology, the Anthropology of Development, Socio-Medical Anthropology and the Anthropology of Global Health
  • Topics that may be covered include: hunting, farming, animal health, globalisation, development, biopolitics, veterinary medicine, zoonotic diseases, vector-borne diseases, human-animal relations

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • At the end of the module, students will be able to:
  • Demonstrate advanced levels of current knowledge and understanding in social anthropological theories
  • Evidence awareness of how the rise of multispecies anthropology has shaped new debates in social theory relevant to economic and socio-medical anthropology.
  • In depth knowledge of multispecies ethnography, its utility for understanding economic transformations and the implications of these transformations for health and wellbeing.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Deploy advanced analytical skills drawing on material from across different sub-disciplines of anthropology.
  • Deploy anthropological insights to reflect on social change.
Key Skills:
  • Critical analysis and interpretation of complex texts and ideas
  • Development and effective communication of arguments in written form

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Seminars will integrate lecture, tutorial and practical components.
  • Lecture components will provide students with an outline of key knowledge and debates in the topic area, discuss the literature that students should explore, and provide relevant examples and cases studies.
  • Tutorial components will develop topics introduced in lectures and required reading to analyse aspects or case studies in greater depth and to prepare students for their summative assignment.
  • Practical components will provide students with activities that help them relate the issues discussed to their own lives and experiences.
  • Student preparation and reading time will allow engagement with specific material in advance of tutorials. It will also involve in-depth reading related to the assessment, which will be a written assignment.
  • Summative assessment will consist of a 2,500 word written assignment in which students will apply concepts and perspectives covered in the course to develop an in-depth argument relating to one of the topics covered in the module.
  • Formative assessment will consist of a 500 word written assignment that will summarise two or three ethnographic texts and their relevance to material covered in the module.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Seminars 2 1 hour 2
Seminars 7 2 hours 14
Preparation and Reading 84
Total 100

Summative Assessment

Component: Coursework Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Written assignment 100%

Formative Assessment:

500 word ethnographic analysis.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University