Summer 2024 - SA 443 D100

Ethnographic Sensibility in Action (A) (4)

Ethnographic Sensibility in Action:Illus. Anthr

Class Number: 3145

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    May 6 – Aug 2, 2024: Fri, 1:30–5:20 p.m.

  • Instructor:

    Stacy Pigg
    Office Hours: after class and by appointment
  • Prerequisites:

    Minimum of 72 units including either SA 101 or SA 150.



Selected Topics in Anthropology. Seminar exploring the topic through discussion, and developing original ideas that engage with anthropological theory and methods. Course topic varies with the instructor and section. See detailed course outline for more information. SA 443 may be repeated for credit only when a different topic is taught.


Course topic: Ethnographic Sensibility in Action: Illustrating Anthropology

How do illustrations (in the form of comics, sketches, maps, diagrams and charts) enable ways of perceiving, feeling, and thinking about social forms? What kinds of social science stories can be told using the affordances of these mediums? What possibilities open up when drawing is a deliberately embodied methodology, a form of observational note-taking or means of collaboration with interlocutors? How might graphic communication enable the circulation of anthropological insights? This class explores the possibilities for using sketching and drawing as mode of attention to social worlds. It expands our understanding of ethnography as both representation and as method.

Students do not need any special skill with drawing to succeed in this course. Participation involves active experimentation with graphic means of observing, participating in and analyzing materials and interactions. Class time will be divided between reading/discussion and hands-on making activities that invite autoethnographic reflexivity.



1) Understand emerging methods and concepts through which anthropologists employ and analyze graphic practices;
2) Become familiar with the history of anthropologists’ graphic engagements;
3) Apply theoretical and methodological tools learned in class to real-world issues, current events, and everyday life;
4) Cultivate good research and analytical skills via graphic practices (i.e., an ability to use graphic methods and resources in executing a research project);
5) Have fun!



Your final mark in the class will be based on the following:

A semester long mini-ethnographic project to be communicated in illustrated, graphical form will be 50% of the final grade. Other assignments may include: discussion leadership, book review, visual analysis, interpretation of an academic article in visual form. Required participation includes weekly experiments with modalities of sketching and graphic recording. (Grades are not based on aesthetic/artistic criteria).

: Where a final exam is scheduled and the student does not write the exam or withdraw from the course before the deadline date, an N grade will be assigned. Unless otherwise specified on the course syllabus, all graded assignments for this course must be completed for a final grade other than N to be assigned. An N is considered as an F for the purposes of scholastic standing.

Grading System: The Undergraduate Course Grading System is as follows:

A+ (95-100) | A (90-94) | A- (85-89) | B+ (80-84) | B (75-79) | B- (70-74) | C+ (65-69) | C (60-64) | C- (55-59) | D (50-54) | F (0-49) | N*
*N standing to indicate the student did not complete course requirements

Academic Honesty and Student Conduct Policies: The Department of Sociology & Anthropology follows SFU policy in relation to grading practices, grade appeals (Policy T20.01), and academic honesty and student conduct procedures (S10‐S10.05). Unless otherwise informed by your instructor in writing, in graded written assignments you must cite the sources you rely on and include a bibliography/list of references, following an instructor-approved citation style. It is the responsibility of students to inform themselves of the content of SFU policies available on the SFU website.

Centre for Accessible Learning: Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need classroom or exam accommodations are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (1250 Maggie Benston Centre) as soon as possible to ensure that they are eligible and that approved accommodations and services are implemented in a timely fashion.

The Sociology and Anthropology Student Union, SASU, is a governing body of students who are engaged with the department and want to build the SA community. Get involved!  Follow Facebook and Instagram pages or visit our website.



A scanner app for your smartphone

Some low cost art supplies and/or digital art tools of your choosing: budget for a minimum of 1-2 sketchbooks, a set of index cards, a small set of pencils, and markers,  pens, or brushes/ink or paint.


You will need to purchase these two books:

  • Causey, Andrew Drawn to See: Drawing as an Ethnographic Method. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. 2017
  • Moisan, Marie-Eve et al. Gringo Love : Stories of Sex Tourism in Brazil. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.2020.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating. Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the university community. Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the university. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the university.