Economic Anthropology (BOA)

Course content

Economic anthropology is one of the classic fields of anthropology, and yet it is also a field that has experienced something of a revival recently and seems more relevant than ever. With global economic challenges such as the corona crisis, the climate crisis, and the financial crisis, it becomes increasingly important to question the ways in which people understand the so-called economy, and what implications that has for social relations and lived lives in various parts of the world. This course provides an opportunity to rediscover classics, to explore contemporary economic culture, and to consider and discuss different approaches.


The aim of the course is to expand the students’ knowledge of classic and new economic anthropology, to develop their curiosity, overview and understanding of the field and related fields, to allow and encourage experimental use of economic anthropology in analysis of own empirical data, planned fieldwork, or theoretical discussions, and to engage and involve the students in the planning and activities of the course, and in exploring new themes.


During the course we will cover some already planned themes, concepts, and discussions, such as exchange, gifts, market, money, labour, property, debt, capitalism, value, reciprocity, precarization, modes of productionetc. but the students will also have influence on the content of the course.


The course is accepted as part of the BOA specialisation.


From summer 2023 the course is also offered to students at the

- Bachelor and Master Programmes in Economics 

- Master Programme in Social Data Science

- Master Programme in Political Sciences

- Master Programme in Social Science

- Master Programme i Global Development

- Bachelor and Master Programmes in Psychology

Enrolled students register the course through the Selfservice. Please contact the study administration at each programme for questions regarding registration.

The course is open to:

  • Exchange and Guest students from abroad
  • Credit students from Danish Universities
Learning outcome

The course aims at giving the students the following competences, knowledge and skills:


Competences:  to analyze different economic systems, phenomena or imaginaries with the help of theory.

To choose, apply and transfer relevant theoretical concepts and ideas from anthropology in the analysis of economic issues and phenomena.


Knowledge: to demonstrate an understanding of various debates, standpoints and theoretical concepts from the field of economic anthropology.


Skills: to formulate an analysis in a coherent and convincing text.

To be able to apply anthropological concepts in the analysis of current economic issues

The course will consist of 14 three-hour weekly seminars, involving lectures, group discussions, presentations, etc.

BSc students: 500 pages of mandatory reading.

MSc students: 500 pages of mandatory reading + 200 pages of own choice.

The mandatory readings will be available in Absalon.


Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)

Continuous feedback during the course of the semester

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment
Type of assessment details
One BA student: 21600-26400 keystrokes. For group responses, Min. 6,750 and Max. 8,250 extra keystrokes per extra group member.

One MA student: 27,000-33,000 keystrokes. For group responses, Min. 8,450 and Max. 10,300 extra keystrokes per extra group member.

For groups with both BA and MA students:
A MA and a BA student: 31,900-38,975 (BA: 14.175-17.325 KA: 17.725-21.650)
A MA and two BA students: 38,050 – 46,475 (BA: 11,700-14.300 KA: 14.650-17.875)
A MA and three BA students: 44,525-54,375 (BA: 10.475-12,800 MA: 13.100-15.975)
Two MA and one BA student: 41,000-50,050 (BA: 11,700-14.300 KA: 14.650-17.875)
Two MA and two BA students: 47,150-57,550 (BA: 10.475-12,800 MA: 13.100-15.975)
Three MA and one BA student: 49,775-60,725 (BA: 10.475-12,800 MA: 13.100-15.975)

MA students must include supplementary literature in the exam assignment. The supplementary literature is chosen by the student.

Information of level and contribution
Students must indicate on the first page of the assignment whether they are a BA or MA students. In the case of group assignments, the contribution of each individual student must be clearly marked in the assignment.
All aids allowed

Policy on the Use of Generative AI Software and Large Language Models in Exams

The Department of Anthropology allows the use of generative AI software and large language models (AI/LLMs), such as ChatGPT, in written exams, provided that the use of AI/LLMs is disclosed and specified (i.e., how it was used and for what purpose) in an appendix that does not count towards the page limit of the exam.


If AI/LLMs are used as source, the same requirements apply for using quotation marks and source referencing as with all other sources. Otherwise, it will be a case of plagiarism.

Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Internal co-assessor.

1st and 2nd re-exam: A new essay must be submitted. The new assignment must be submitted by the deadline for the re-exam.

Criteria for exam assessment

See description of learning outcome. Formalities for Written Works must be fulfilled, read more: MSc Students/ BA students (in Danish)/ exchange and credit students 

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 42
  • Preparation
  • 100
  • Exam
  • 64
  • English
  • 206


Course number
7,5 ECTS
Programme level
Bachelor choice
Full Degree Master choice

1 semester

See time table on the right.
Department of Anthropology, Study Council
Contracting department
  • Department of Anthropology
  • Department of Psychology
  • Department of Political Science
  • Social Data Science
  • Department of Economics
Contracting faculty
  • Faculty of Social Sciences
Course Coordinator
  • Nana Katrine Vaaben   (11-7b6e7b6e3b836e6e6f727b4d6e7b81757f7c3b78823b7178)

Nana Katrine Vaaben
Christina Jerne

Saved on the 06-12-2023

Are you BA- or KA-student?

Are you bachelor- or kandidat-student, then find the course in the course catalog for students:

Courseinformation of students