Instructors

Fall 2011

Course Description*

Ethnobotany is the scientific study of interaction between human cultures and plants.  

This includes a wide range of topics taken from an even wider range of disciplines, and this considers many different types of interactions between people and plants.  

Although we draw on examples of interactions from around the world, a special focus is placed on examples of cultural use of plants in Hawai'i and the islands of the South and Central Pacific.

This course provides Foundations Requirement credit (for graduation) as Global & Multicultural Perspectives, Group C.

Learning Outcomes*
  1. Students will be able to describe a diversity of ways in which plants and sues of plants have shaped past cultural and historical developments.
  2. Students will be able to discuss and appreciate the roles of plants in their personal and family daily lives.
  3. Students will be able to define the critical roles plants play in the modern world and into a sustainable future.
  4. Students will become familiar with the basic elements of botanical sciences.
  5. Students will become familiar with the basic elements of cultural sciences.
Required Readings*
  • Abbott, Isabella Aiona.1992. La'au Hawai'i: traditional Hawaiian uses of plants. Bishop Museum Press, Honolulu.
    
  • Balick, Michael J. & Paul Alan Cox.  1996.  Plants, People, and Culture: the science of ethnobotany. American Botanical Council, Austin. 2005 reprint edition. 









Required Assignments*
 Class%    
 Credit  Due Date
 Week
 25%  Midterm Exam
 October 10, 2011
 8
 25%  Final Exam
 December 16, 2011
 16
 25%  Written Assignment
 November 23, 2011
 14
 10% Participation
 Weekly
 1-16
5%
 Foster Botanical Garden Visit
 September 29/30, 2011
 6
 5%  Community Resource Visit
 October 26/27, 2011
 10
 5%  Bishop Museum Visit
 November 17/18, 2011
 13
 100%      


Course Schedule**
 Wk             Date  Topics  Readings   Lab  Online Videos
 1
 8/22
8/24
Introduction to the course
Ti Plant (Cordyline), multipurpose species
Balick & Cox, Chapter 1, pp.1-23
Abbott selected pages (see index).
 Introduction

1. Opening Oli

2. Introduction 
 2  8/29
8/31
Cultural evolution of plant-people relationships; gathering & hunting, origins & rise of agriculture.   Balick & Cox, Chapter 3, pp.63-97

 Introduction to campus and multipurpose plants 1. Origins of Plant Uses  
 3  9/5
9/7
Holiday
Spread of humans out of Africa, transported landscapes of people, plants, animals and ideas. 
 Balick & Cox, Chapter 3, pp.63-97.;
Reading to be posted to Laulima.
 Plant Anatomy
Worksheet: Campus Plant Walk an Introduction to Plant Parts
  • Ferns
  • Monocots/Dicots
  • Basic Flower structures

1. Guns, Germs & Steel 
2. Transported Landscapes 
 4  9/12
9/14
An ocean in mind; evolution of Pacific Cultures   Balick and Cox, Chapter 3, pp.63-97;
Abbott, 1-44.
  Ethnobotany Ethic
Code of Ethics reading:
  1. The Kaua'i Declaration (Required)
  2.  International Society of Ethnobiology (Optional)
Worksheet: Ethics, Semi structured interviews, Freelisting
  • How do ethnobotanist collect data?
  • Informed consent?
  • Freelist & Semi-structured interviewing exercise.
1. Wild Plant Foods 
2. Origins of Agriculture 
3. World Food Crops


 5  9/19
9/21
 Lapita Toolkits, Canoe Species: Crops and other plants in Pacific Island Countries Balick & Cox, Chapters 3&4,
 Abbott, 1-44. 
 Pacific Navigator
Worksheet: Directions for Pacific Navigator Game and Game Insight
  • High Islands Navigator Games
  • History of Hawaii through Plants
  • Transported Pacific Landscape
1. Evolution of Pacific Cultures 
2. Lapita Toolkits 



 6  9/26
9/28
 Lapita Toolkits, Canoe Species: Crops and other plants in Pacific Island Countries 

DUE: Foster Botanical Garden Worksheet
Balick & Cox, Chapters 3&4,
 Abbott, various pages to be assigned.  
Wild Foods and Spices
Worksheet: Trading places game and Spices activity  
  •  Trading Places game
  •  Where do spices come from, what parts of plants, which are the most economically important?
1. Wild Plant Foods 
2.  Cultural and Culinary Ethnobotanical Knowledge 
3. Spices and Herbs
 7  10/3
10/5
 Lapita Toolkits, Canoe Species: Crops and other plants in Pacific Island Countries  Balick & Cox, Chapters 3&4,
 Abbott, various pages to be assigned. 
 Seaweed
Worksheet: Basic seaweed (limu) background and identification activity
  • Rhodophyta, Phaeophyta, Chlorophyta
  • Seaweed as foods & medicines.
  • Economic and Ecological importance of various limu types.
1. Limu (Algae) 
2. Canoe Plants: Five Pacific Trees
3. Crops in Pacific Island Cultures  
 8  10/10
10/12
 MID-TERM EXAMINATION
Plants of the Gods, entering the other world
Balick & Cox, Chapter 5, pp.145-178.    Meet @ Ka Papa Lo'i 'o Kanewai 
Worksheet: Kanewai, House Construction and Cultural Landscapes
1. Entering Another World 
2. Psychoactive Plants I 
3. Psychoactive Plants II
 9  10/17
10/19
Plants of the Gods, entering the other world  Balick & Cox, Chapter 5, pp.145-178.    Kava & Other Beverages of the Gods
Worksheet: Basic kava introduction and beverage plants
  • Kava
  • Chocolate
  • Tea/ Coffee
  • Plant affects on Psychology
1. Stimulating Beverages
2. Alcoholic Beverages 
3. 'Awa and Cultural Conservation
 10  10/24
10/26
Plants of the Gods, entering the other world 

DUE: Visit to a Community Resource
Balick & Cox, Chapter 5, pp.145-178.    Maintaining the beat: Tapa, paper, cloth and cordage
Worksheet: Fibers and Anatomy of Plants used in Clothing and Plants used in Music
  • Ethnomusicology
  • Fiber arts of Tapa, Paper and Cloth
1. A Plant Walk with Hula Plants
2. Kuo Hina E Hiapo
3. Felted Bark: Kapa/Tapa 
4. Recollection of a Family Tradition 
 11  10/31
11/2
Plants of the Gods, entering the other world Balick & Cox, Chapter 5, pp.145-178.   Botany: Plant classifications
Worksheet: Folk taxonomy and Systematics
  • Contemporary plants and their effect on society
  • Folk Taxonomy
1. Why are Plants Useful to Us?
2. What Makes Plants Waterproof?
3. Taxonomy  
 12  11/7
11/9
Medicinal Plants, General Discussion   Balick & Cox, Chapter 2, pp.25-62  Friday November 11, 2011 No Lab (Veteran's Day) 1. Illness and Medicine in Cultural Settings 
2. 
Making Sense of Plant Medicines
3. Herbal Remedies
 13  11/14
11/16
Medicinal Plants, General Discussion 

DUE: Visit to Bernice P. Bishop Museum
 Balick & Cox, Chapter 2, pp.25-62  Traditional and Modern Psychoactive and Medicinal Plants
Worksheet: Meets some Psychoactive and Medicinal Plants
  • Meet some Psychoactive Plants
  • Herbal Medicine
  • Western Medicine
1. Polynesian Herbal Medicine           2. Rotuman Health Care                    3. Hawaiian Health Care                    4. Chinese Traditional Medicine        
5. Medicinal Plants Dolpo, Nepal
 14  11/21
11/23
Special Plants, Selected Case Histories- Rice
Special Plants, Selected Case Histories- Bananas
DUE: Written Assignment
Reading to be posted on Laulima 
Reading to be posted on Laulima 
 Thursday November 24, 2011 No Lab (Happy)
Friday November 25, 2011 No Lab (Thanksgiving)
1. Hawaiian Housing Materials
2. Shelter and Cultural Identification with Nature 
3. Architecture & Historic Buildings
4. Home Gardens
 15  11/28
11/30
Special Plants, Selected Case Histories- Mesquite (Kiawe)
Ethnobotany and Conservation in Micronesia. 
Reading to be posted on Laulima 
Balick & Cox, Chapter 6, pp.179-208. 

Religion, Power Plants & the Role of Plant Conservation

Worksheet: Religion, Power Plants & the Role of Plant Conservation

To prepare for lab review online videos: Buddhism & Plants, Christianity and Plants, Ethnoecology & Conservation

1. Ethnoecology and Conservation
2. Ethnobotany 1nd Conservation in Micronesia
Ethnobotany and Conservation in Africa 
4. Carving a Future: 10 lessons for sustainable woodcarving 
5. Ethics 
6. Buddhism and Plants 
7. Christianity and Plants
 16
 12/5
12/7
 Ethnobotany: Ethics, Methods, Conservation
Multipurpose plants & a general 
 Balick & Cox, Chapter 6, pp.179-208.
Abbott, selected pages to be announced.
NO LAB- STUDY WEEK