F&ES 681a / 2019-2020

Ethnobotany (First class begins Sept 10)

Credits: 3
Fall 2019: Tu, 1:00-3:50, Sage 41c
 

 

First class begins Sept 10

The objective of this course is to introduce students to the interdisciplinary nature of ethnobotany studies from the perspective of a field researcher, aiming to highlight the methods used in ethnobotanical research and to showcase the diversity of contemporary field studies in ethnobotany. Topics discussed during the course will encompass changing traditional knowledge systems, community-based resource-management, conservation of biocultural diversity, migration and urbanization, smallholder tropical agriculture & traditional food plants, and community health. Classes will combine Powerpoint lectures around key topics and group discussion of selected scientific readings. Guest lectures of invited scientists will allow students to learn first-hand about on-going research projects.  
This will be an interactive course with students expected to actively participate in class and discuss the readings listed each week in group, in moderator-audience style. Each week, two rotating students will serve as moderators. Class discussion of readings will focus on the critical reflection of the research questions and/or methods used by the authors, experimental study design (when applicable), the main findings of the papers, as well as the conclusions inferred by the authors. To broaden and deepen class discussion, students are expected to actively peruse papers in ethnobotanical journals such as the Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine, Economic Botany, Journal of Ethnobiology, Human Ecology, Ethnobiology and Conservation, Journal of Ethnopharmacology, and related journals to find other papers on the topics discussed.