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Communicating communities


Compulsory attendance


Admission requirements

Bachelor’s degree obtained, admission to the RMA-programme.


This is one of the central RMA seminars which the student may choose within the RMA track ‘Caribbean and Amazonia’ (the other option being the seminar directed by Prof. Jansen on ‘Religion and Society’). This RMA seminar is connected to on-going ERC- and NWO-funded projects on

  • Cultural Encounters (e.g. transformation of indigenous Caribbean society and culture after first contact between the New and Old Worlds), and

  • Archaeological networks, human mobility and the exchange of goods and ideas. Both imply a profound interest in cultural encounters and an interdisciplinary analysis of archaeological, bioarchaeological, ethnohistorical, ethnographic, and anthropological data.

RMA-students, PhD-candidates and postdoc researchers will work together discussing theoretical aspects and other issues relevant for their thesis.

Course objectives

  • Knowledge of and insight in setting up, structuring and executing of scientific research projects, on the base of detailed knowledge of the relevant period, region, research problems, recent literature and current issues under consideration;

  • Insight in how high-ranking international research is conducted;

  • Critical assessment of current research and publications with respect to applicability and background;

  • Express one’s well-argumented opinion on these topics in discussion;

  • Ability to design and conduct research and generate new knowledge;

  • Insight in the applicability of theoretical concepts and models on archaeological, historical and anthropological data;

  • Oral presentation of research;

  • Development of well argumented texts on research;

  • Critical review of one‘s own research and that of fellow students in a constructive manner.

Ects distribution

The course load will be distributed as follows: –


Course schedule details can be found in the “Research Master time schedule”:

Mode of instruction

Seminar with student’s reports, commenting on the structure of research and thesis, with analytic discussion of recent publications. In addition students attend the guest lectures (to be announced during the year), as well as an international symposium, workshop or congress, to be selected in consultation with their thesis supervisor.

Assessment method

  • Active participation in the seminar;

  • Written and oral assignments, including analytical presentation of recent literature related to the topic of the thesis (book-review);

  • Report on congress attendance;

  • Research proposal.

Assessment deadline Assignments and papers should have been handed in before the end of the examination week following the course block.

Exam dates and assessment deadlines can be found in the examination schedule

Reading list

Partly indicated during the seminar, partly to be identified by the students themselves.


Register for this course through uSis

Exchange and Study Abroad students: please see the Prospective Students website for information on how to apply.

All information (costs, registration, entry requirements etc.) for those who are interested in taking this course as a Contractstudent you will find on the Contractonderwijs Archeologie webpage (in Dutch).

Contact information

For more information about this course, please contact dr. C. L. Hofman