The Department of Anthropology at New York University is one of the country’s leading programs for Sociocultural Anthropology, Linguistic Anthropology, Archaeological Anthropology, and Biological Anthropology. The scope of the discipline's interests effectively bridges the humanities, the social sciences, and the natural sciences. Anthropology asks basic questions concerning the origins and development of humans and their cultures and divergent systems of thought, belief, and social order. The faculty at NYU have a broad range of research interests that cover the globe: North America, Africa, India, the Near East, the Caribbean, Latin America, Europe, Australia, and the South Pacific. The Department houses an extensive film and video collection, as well as teaching and research labs for Linguistic Anthropology, Archaeological Anthropology, and Biological Anthropology. A regular colloquium series and an active undergraduate student association welcome undergraduate participation. Formal and informal cooperative arrangements with museums, zoos, and other academic institutions in the greater New York area place at students’ disposal a group of anthropological scholars, materials, and resources unparalleled in this country.
Sociocultural Anthropology is the comparative study of living populations throughout the world from the deserts of Africa to the islands of the South Pacific. It seeks to understand cultural influences on various aspects of human societies and institutions, such as gender relationships, social hierarchies, and symbolic representations of human behavior.
Linguistic Anthropology examines language as a key to understanding the social, symbolic and expressive lives of members of society. It studies language's impact on other aspects of cultural life, such as social organization, religion and politics.
Archaeological Anthropology studies the excavated material remains of past cultures, uses scientific methods to decipher how people have lived and worked in the past. Special interests include the study of prehistoric hunters and gatherers and the development of more complex societies in North America, Europe, Egypt and Mesopotamia, and South Asia, among others.
Biological Anthropology concentrates on the evolution, biology, and comparative behavior of human and non-human primates. It is linked to the sub-fields by its commitment to the study of evolution and biology within the context of culture, society, and ecology. Faculty and students are currently doing research throughout Africa, Latin America, and Asia.