This module provides an introduction to the main anthropological approaches to economic life. The first part of the module explores classical analytical frameworks for understanding how people live and organise their lives in different ways. The second part focuses on contemporary issues surrounding value creation and contestation.

Students should be aware that this module is not intended to be an economics course for anthropologists and others. Instead, grounded in the comparative and ethnographically-based discipline of anthropology, it brings together a wide range of regional, cultural and historical material. We will examine market and nonmarket economies, gift giving and commodity exchange, state and alternative currencies, human and posthuman economies. The aim of the module is to broaden the notion of ‘the economy’ and introduce students to the expansive and inclusive world within which people mobilize action.