Welcome to one of the largest graduate programs in socio-cultural anthropology in Canada.

As a graduate student, you will be joining a dynamic program known for innovative research and theory integrating a diverse range of specializations not found at any other university. With 19 full-time and 7 affiliated faculty members, our program has a well-established national and international reputation for critical scholarship, advanced theory, and engagement in local, national and global contemporary issues. We have a long tradition of combining scholarship with a commitment to social and economic justice.

The outstanding quality and diversity of our graduate students is one of our greatest strengths. Our students are successful in scholarship competitions and have won an impressive number of national and international awards for academic achievement. They are active participants in the political and cultural life of the campus and beyond and produce research that is engaged with contemporary issues faced by diverse communities, groups and organizations in local and international contexts.

Graduate students participate in courses, workshops, and colloquia to develop research and professional skills and advanced knowledge in anthropological theories and methodologies.  In addition, York University supports a number of Research Centreswhich draw faculty from multiple departments, including many faculty members of the Graduate Program in Social Anthropology. We encourage our students to join and participate in the activities of these Centres.

Our graduates have found employment in a range of rewarding professions. Of our graduated PhD students, 83% have gone on to take up academic positions.

In addition to academic careers, we have alumni who work in policy and research positions for NGOs, governmental institutions, and consulting and marketing agencies; in curatorial positions in museums; and as filmmakers, artists, and writers.  Our aim is to ensure that graduates of our Masters and Doctoral programs will be well placed to pursue their academic and professional career goals.

Read more about our program.

Ethnographic Fieldwork Photography Gallery

An image may contain a story of a thousand words, it may perfectly capture the heart of your dissertation or, most often, it may not. The value in an ethnographic photograph is not that it represents all of you or all of your work, but that it captures some moment, idea, feeling, or experience that the image taker feels is interesting, and important to share.

These images are not always “perfectly” framed or “in focus.” Composition is not always a consideration, or even a possibility, in capturing an ethnographic image. Rather, there is often a different sort of purpose to this form of record making: to aid in the future recollection of a moment or detail, to quickly capture the unanticipated, or perhaps, to support the written word with visual proof. These images are also personal souvenirs, of a time of intense emotional and intellectual adventure.

Yet, the image is not enough. Without a label to indicate who, where or what (we leave the “why” and “how” for the dissertations), the images may seem odd, perturbing, boring, or even ugly. Thus, with a few short words these points are clarified, and the potency, sometimes poignant, is revealed.

To display our creative, record taking adventures, to promote the proud accomplishment of having conducted fieldwork and to maintain a visual record of our anthropological diversity, the Social Anthropology Graduate Students’ Association presents this permanent exhibition of our graduate students’ Fieldwork Photography in the SAGA Ethnographic Photography Gallery.

Toronto, June 2014
Aruna Panday