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Anthropology of the Americas

The Anthropology of the Americas is a regional subdiscipline of Cultural Anthropology, otherwise known as "Precolumbian Studies" or "Amerindian Studies". Its research focuses on the indigenous societies of the Western Hemisphere, in particular of Latin America, in diachronic perspective -- ranging from the age of settlement and the emergence of complex societies to the European conquest and current social processes. The Anthropology of the Americas is an interdisciplinary subject that combines methodological approaches from cultural and social anthropology, ethnography, archaeology, ethnohistory, linguistics and other related fields to reconstruct and analyse cultural development in indigenous societies.

The Anthropology of the Americas has a long academic tradition in Germany. The field was originally more concerned with the cultural areas of the Andes and Mesoamerica, while today all indigenous societies in the Americas are covered and research questions include topics such as globalisation or the impact of colonialisation and decolonialisation. At present, the University of Bonn is the only academic institution in Germany that offers BA and MA degree courses in the Anthropology of the Americas.

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