Interested in how cultural diversity shapes human experience, past and present? Curious about what connects our lives with those of others around the globe? Colby’s anthropology professors are eager to explore these topics with you.

Anthropology students explore the great diversity of human social and cultural experience, complex social identities, and patterns of globalization, all of which are fundamental to understanding the workings of the world. Whether your interest is in local communities or global connections, anthropology offers tools for understanding how people everywhere both shape and are shaped by the dynamism of cross-cultural intersections, history, and meaning.

At Colby, we focus on cultural anthropology. Course topics range from the study of geographic regions to the analysis of global issues that affect and connect people to their livelihoods. Graduates of the program have a sophisticated understanding of complex cultural differences and the processes at work in today’s global economy. They are holistic thinkers and skilled communicators who can analyze social transformations and facilitate conversations between societies and across lines of class and ethnic diversity.

Mission Statement

Anthropology pursues empirically-grounded, critical analysis in order to understand cultural systems, illuminate social worlds, and lovingly question how these shape and are shaped by lived experience. As such, anthropology is critique for the purpose of building knowledge, enacting kindness, pursuing mutuality, stretching our imaginations, and creating a better future.

Read the Anthropology Department handbook.