Rural Resilience: Understanding Post-Earthquake Recovery in Nepal's Communities To learn more, watch the video interview with Dr. Jeremy Spoon
Anthropology studies human biological and cultural diversity through time and space and the interplay between culture and biology. It encompasses our closest relatives and the human experience from our earliest known bipedal ancestors to the modern world, from the smallest human groups to empires and multinational corporations.

Anthropologists deal with prehistoric, historic, and contemporary peoples and with such topics as human evolution, subsistence and settlement systems, family, urban development, transnationalism, globalization, social conflict, gender, symbolic systems, and human ecology.  Anthropologists apply the knowledge gained from diverse theoretical perspectives to practical human problems in settings such as health care, educational development, and natural and cultural resource management, among others. As scholars, we are committed to the highest quality teaching in the classroom and the field; to ongoing research both in Portland and abroad; and to active engagement in wider university and community programs.

The Anthropology Department Office, Cramer 141, is currently closed,
but we are available and will be checking email regularly during
normal business hours.

Please email us at

About Us

The Anthropology Department at Portland State University was established in 1959 as a four field anthropology department with Oregon's only free-standing Master's program. Since then, anthropologists at Portland State University have compiled a long record of research, teaching, and community involvement. Among its distinguished former faculty were Wayne Suttles, the premier 20th century ethnographer and linguist of the Northwest Coast, and Kenneth Ames, author of Chinookan Peoples of the Lower Columbia

Currently, the Department has faculty in sociocultural anthropology, archaeology, and biological anthropology. The Department's emphases that cross-cut the subdisciplines are applied anthropology and environmental anthropology. Programs and faculty research take advantage of the university's location in Portland, Oregon, the Pacific Northwest, and the eastern edge of the Pacific basin.

The department is also part of the Consortium of Practicing and Applied Anthropology.

For more information, review the yearly newsletters and departmental policies, the general departmental brochure, or the applied anthropology brochure. If you'd like to talk to a faculty member about joining the program, please send us an email or stop in during open office hours.

Contact Us:

Becky Hoven Department Coordinator | (503) 725-3081

Virginia Butler, Department Chair | (503) 725-3303

Michele Gamburd, Graduate Program Coordinator | (503) 725-3317

Samantha Contreras Leos, Student Office Assistant | (503) 725-3081

Mailing Address:
Anthropology Department
Portland State University
P.O. Box 751
Portland, OR 97207

Street Address:
Anthropology Department
141 Cramer Hall
1721 SW Broadway
Portland, OR 97201