SOSANT4505 – Environmental Anthropology, Honours

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

What characterizes our relationship to “nature” and the living world? How do people think and act in response to environmental change? What injustices and inequalities underlie dominant discourses and practices involving nature? What thoughts and practices surrounding nature shapes the world as it is today? And how do changing environments affect the ways we think about ourselves? This course is an introduction to some of the central themes in environmental anthropology as well as an exploration of some recent anthropological analyses of global environmental change. Drawing on a range of ethnographic studies the course provides perspectives on topics such as:

  • How peoples’ understanding of the environment can be related to identity.
  • How nature—animals, plants and landscapes—can become sites of contestation and conflict.
  • How the environment can be a meeting point between different knowledge traditions.
  • How current environmental changes can be understood as a complex and unpredictable outcome of several processes of humans-environment relations.
  • How both slow and sudden environmental crises may affect how we think about the future and what it means to be human.

Learning outcome


  • Knowledge of environmental issues and anthropological approaches to studying these
  • Knowledge of anthropological approaches to global environmental change
  • Understanding of the social and historical processes that underlie and contribute to global environmental change
  • Knowledge of the multitude of existing discourses of nature


  • The ability to critically analyse arguments and statements
  • The ability to set forth theoretical arguments based on case studies
  • Present an analytic argument in a written paper


  • Achieve independent academic thought
  • The ability to construct and express analytical arguments both verbally and in the written form


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.

This course is available for students admitted to the master's supplement in Environmental Humanities and Sciences.

Overlapping courses

5 credits overlap with SOSANT2510 – Environmental Anthropology


The course is made up of a series of lectures. These follow the teaching on SOSANT2510.


The exam will consist of a semester essay with a minimum of 2000 words and maximum 4000 words including cover page and foot- or endnotes.

Submit assignments in Inspera

You submit your assignment in the digital examination system Inspera. Read about how to submit your assignment.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

You may write your examination paper in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Autumn 2022


Autumn 2022

Teaching language