Special Topic: Communication and Culture


This course examines the mutually constitutive relationship between communication and culture through an investigation of three main questions: 1) How can communicative practices be seen as cultural practices? 2) How is “culture” itself a product of communication? 3) What happens when people from different cultural background communicate in their culturally specific ways?

In this course, we survey both historical and contemporary readings on communication and culture from selected areas of study such as ethnography of communication, cultural studies, rhetorical studies, discourse studies, and digital anthropology. This course looks at a wide range of issues such as affective communication and digital cultures, communication and gender, communication and race, political communication and culture, and intercultural communication, among others.

The purpose of this course is to help students develop a theoretical and methodological foundation for studying communication from a cultural perspective; and more importantly to take note of the ubiquity of culture and its importance in the study of observable communicative conduct.

Availability 2024

Not taught in 2024


Lecturer(s) Dr Bingjuan Xiong


COMMS 704: 30 points