The Anthropology Department of Lucknow University is one of the third oldest Departments in the country. Initially from 1928 to 1950 anthropology was taught by late Prof. D.N. Majumdar in the Department of Economics and later in Sociology as a Postgraduate optional paper, but with its increasing popularity a separate department was founded in 1951 and introductory course was begun in B.A. later M.A. consisting of papers each on Prehistory, Physical Anthropology and Cultural anthropology. At that time the greatest task before the department was to train young academically minded people in an entirely novel profession in such a way as to benefit the peoples of state and the country. But in due course of the journey of 65 years with its world fame stalwarts have been produced and a galaxy of anthropologists widely known as “Lucknow School of Anthropology” established thereafter. The number of students has been increased continuously from 15 in B.A. and M.A. to 32 at Ph.D., 62 at P.G. and 245 at U.G. levels. The degrees in science i.e. B.Sc. and M.Sc. have been introduced by Prof. Gopala Sarana, Former Head of the Department, apart from initial courses on B.A. and M.A. of the department. In the meantime several other self financing courses were also added by former heads of the department i.e. Prof. B.R.K. Shukla, Prof. Banvir Singh, Prof. Indu Sahai, and Prof. Nadeem Hasnain between 1995 and 2012 but they could not survive due to the challenges of the job market. However, M.A. / M.Sc. program in Forensic Science could successfully be added with 20 seats in 2015 which has tremendous impact in the market and fulfils the current need of the nation.
As a subject Anthropology has been offered at its 12 associated and autonomous colleges since 1960 where approximately 1000 students are studying at graduation level add its beauty and credential. The department has a list of world fame alumni students in which Prof. N. S. Reddy, Prof. S.C. Dubey, Prof. T.N. Madan, Prof. L.P. Vidyarthi, Prof. Gopala Sarana, Prof. K.S. Mathur, Prof. D.K.Sen, Prof. T.N. Pandey, Prof. R.K. Jain, Prof. V.N. Misra, Prof. J.S. Bhandari, Prof. R.S. Negi, Prof. R.S. Khare, Prof. H.S. Saxsena are few pearls.