AST115H5 • Cultural Astronomy

This course will explore the historic and ongoing relationship between astronomy and human culture. In this course, students will approach astronomical concepts through the lens of archaeoastronomy – the exploration of astronomical practices in ancient cultures, and ethnoastronomy – the study of modern astronomical practices by cultures around the world. Topics will include cultural interpretations of the motions of the stars, planets, moon, and sun, methods of navigation and timekeeping, puzzles that have inspired important shifts in our understanding of the Universe, and varying cultural conceptions of what science is and how it is done.

In Class