Spring 2019 FWS Brochure

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AMERICAN INDIAN AND INDIGENOUS STUDIES 1123

Indigeneity as Rights: Haudenosaunee Rights Advocacy

The Haudenosaunee have maintained their sovereign rights since contact. They travelled on Haudenosaunee passports and sought audience at various international fora since the founding of the League of Nations. These actions paved the way for the ratification of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) in 2007. What does it mean to possess rights, and what are the sovereign rights of Indigenous nations that predate European contact? By looking into indigenous cultural, colonial, political, and legal histories, we will examine the perspective from which the Haudenosaunee advocated for their rights. Writing assignments such as analytical essays, position papers and petitions will respond to culturally and historically situated readings and visual representations, culminating in a critical assessment of the success of UNDRIP.

SEM 101 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Ursala Piasta-Mansfield 17736

 

AMERICAN STUDIES 1149

The Third World Within: Poverty and Paradox in the U.S.

The U.S. is supposed to exemplify the First World and the global North. But poverty, colonialism, and marginalization are everywhere, evident in income inequality, environmental injustices, gun violence, high rates of incarceration, and more. Together, we will examine these problems, asking whether they stand apart from modern development or are a hidden but integral part of it. For example, how does the pipeline running through the Standing Rock Indian Reservation compare to energy extraction in other parts of the world? What does the continued crisis in Puerto Rico say about twenty-first-century colonialism? Over the course of the semester, students will produce a sociological research proposal, articulating realistic, data-driven research questions about the paradoxes that surround us.

SEM 101 MW 08:40–09:55 a.m. Eleanor Andrews 17692 Noliwe Rooks

 

ANTHROPOLOGY 1101

Culture, Society, and Power: Paradigm Shifts—Power, Orthodoxy, and Disruption

Everywhere one turns today there is discussion of “paradigm shifts.” How distinctive are they to this moment and are all so-called disruptions in disparate fields connected? This course offers critical tools for apprehending this core motif by which students will explore a variety of literary forms. The seminar will be divided into five units based on a subset of genres, each of which will result in a formal essay assignment: 1) first-person narrative (ethnography, novel, travel memoir); 2) analytical exposition (theoretical deduction, empirical analysis, comparative reasoning); 3) technical prose (scientific reports, legal documents, economic models); 4) opinion essays (editorials, advice columns, critics’ reviews); and 5) creative writing (poetry, screenwriting, mythology). Students will be trained to identify and deploy these textual conventions in their own writing.

SEM 101 MWF 09:05–09:55 a.m. Eudes Prado Lopes 17693 Lucinda Ramberg

 

ANTHROPOLOGY 1101

Culture, Society, and Power: Power and Intimacy in Modern Southeast Asia

This seminar takes you on a journey through the extraordinarily diverse and geopolitically significant region of Southeast Asia. Positioned at the crossroads of Asia, this region is re-emerging as a crucible of cultural and economic dynamism in the twenty-first century. This course asks how people’s intimate everyday experiences of love, identity, and family interrelate with the forces of colonialism, nationalism, and globalization. Among other topics, you will read about spirit possession in Malaysia, lovelorn ghosts in Thailand, and witchcraft in Indonesia. You will also watch selected feature-length films and attend talks at Cornell’s world-renowned Southeast Asia Program. Writing assignments will include critical essays, field notes, personal reflections, and collaborative projects. Through this course you will hone your ability to craft incisive and engaging non-fiction prose.

SEM 102 MW 08:40–09:55 a.m. Ting Hui Lau 17694 Lucinda Ramberg

 

ANTHROPOLOGY 1101

Culture, Society, and Power: Feminist, Anthropology, and the Politics of Representation

What is the relationship between gender ideology, social thought, and how gender is represented in everyday media? How has the field of anthropology intervened into debates on feminism, and what are the politics of how different bodied subjects are represented in scholarship, mainstream media, and beyond? Course texts bring together theories of power, intersectional feminism(s), and queer theory. Students practice ethnographic skills of self-reflexivity, drafting fieldnotes, and conducting participant observation methods in writing assignments where they carry out interviews, oral histories, and critical media analyses.

SEM 103 TR 08:40–09:55 a.m. Natalie Nesvaderani 17695 Lucinda Ramberg

 

ANTHROPOLOGY 1101

Culture, Society, and Power: From the Swampy Land—Indigenous People of the Ithaca Area

Who lived in the Ithaca area before American settlers and Cornell arrived? Where are they today? This class explores the history and culture of the Cayuga people, who call themselves Gayogo̱hó:nǫ', or people from the mucky land. We will read perspectives written by the region's indigenous people about their past history and current events, try to understand reasons why that history has been fragmented and distorted by more recent settlers, and delve into primary sources documenting encounters between colonists and Cayuga people. We will also strive to understand the Cayuga people's ongoing connection to this region despite several centuries of forced exclusion. Writing assignments initially will respond to assigned readings, and build toward independent work that grapples with primary sources on Cayuga history.

SEM 104 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Kurt Jordan 17696

 

ART HISTORY 1160

Dangerous Women

Upon viewing Carolee Schneemann’s Fuses, fellow avant-garde filmmaker Jonas Mekas proclaimed it the film of the year, saying, “It is so gorgeous… so dangerous.” While Fuses was censored as pornographic, Schneemann reflects that its lasting impact as a work of art can be attributed to how it differed from pornography, in visually conveying female pleasure: “There’s no objectification or fetishization of the woman.” In pushing boundaries of representation, Schneemann and her feminist cohort were considered dangerous, and they are not alone in the history of art. Female artists can be situated among other educated women in their presumptive ability to disrupt the natural (patriarchal) order of things. This course considers: women artists connoted as dangerous, from Frida Kahlo to Kara Walker; how women have been villainized in the visual record, from witches to suffragettes; and the pioneering scholars who uncover and interpret these issues, from Linda Nochlin to Deborah Willis. Ultimately, we will connect danger to power.

SEM 101 MWF 12:20–01:10 p.m. Hannah Ryan 17871 Tracy Carrick

 

ART HISTORY 1166

Latin American Art as Politics

In this course students will explore the political roles of art in Latin America in a selection of works ranging from the seventh to the twenty-first century. How can we conceive of aesthetics as politics in Latin America under a variety of historical regimes, including the Maya, Aztecs, Spanish colonial rule, revolutionary governments, military dictatorships, and the contemporary neo-liberal state? This course also investigates as possible political interventions, visual and performative works traditionally not classified as “political art,” including abstract art, performance, installation, new media, and site-specific work. Writing assignments will focus on objects at the Johnson Museum.

SEM 101 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Maria Fernandez 17698

 

ART HISTORY 1167

Latin American Modernism: Changing Perspectives

This class will explore how different styles of writing about art such as manifestos, art criticism, catalogue essays, and art history papers have attempted to give resolution to the larger question: what is Latin American art? While most scholars today agree that there is nothing inherently “Latin American” in the art of the region, this was a central concern for many of the artists who will be covered in class: Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, and Joaquin Torres Garcia. Through a discussion on artistic movements between the years of 1920 to 1950, such as Mexican Muralism, Surrealism, Geometric Abstraction, and Neo-Figuration, this course will explore how these different styles of writing about art have themselves helped construct the category “Latin American Art.”

SEM 101 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Sara Garzon 17699 Tracy Carrick

 

ASIAN STUDIES 1111

Writing on the Wrong Side of History

Most of us tend to think of ourselves as good people who want to contribute to the world in positive ways. But it is also clear that throughout history well intentioned people have been involved in heinous acts of atrocity. In this class we will address the ways in which writers from Japan, the UK, and the U.S. have turned to writing to reflect on moments of national shame that are also part and parcel of how they understand their relationship to the world today. We will consider how writing mediates our own relationship to the objects we study, and the ways in which this self-reflexivity can add nuance and rigor to our own written work.

SEM 101 MWF 09:05–09:55 a.m. Andrew Harding 17700 Jessica Sands

 

AFRICANA STUDIES AND RESEARCH CENTER 1841

Exotic/Erotic Blackness: Race, Sex and Cultural Consumption

How did Blackness become an object of curiosity, desire, and fascination? How did it become exotic? In this course we will see that this is not the result of a recent development in the representation of black bodies. Rather the construction of Blackness as exotic/erotic originates as far as the beginnings of colonialism. We will look at how and why black bodies have been sexualized and commodified through literary and media representation. We will then turn to works by black intellectuals and writers who analyze and resist this form of cultural consumption. Students will critically address these issues and demonstrate their knowledge of the material through close readings and essay writing.

SEM 101 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Alex Lenoble 17701 Jessica Sands

 

AFRICANA STUDIES AND RESEARCH CENTER 1848

CANCELLED-Black Women’s Autobiography in the Twenty-First Century: #WritingHerStory

CANCELLED 1/7/2019 - Black people first began to shape the genre of autobiography during antebellum era slavery. They were prolific in developing the genre throughout the twentieth century, to the point of emerging as serial autobiographers in the case of Maya Angelou. We will focus on how contemporary black writers have continued to write and share their personal stories in the new millennium by examining autobiographies and memoirs and the impact of this writing on twenty-first-century African American literature, from literary to celebrity. Among writers whose work we will read are Kiese Laymon, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Michelle Obama, Gabrielle Union, and Serena Williams. Students will also do some autobiographical writing.

SEM 101 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Riche Richardson 18216

 

NEUROBIOLOGY & BEHAVIOR 1220

Lying Birds and Dancing Bees: How Animals Communicate

Why do female spotted hyenas have a penis? Why do some fish produce electric current with their bodies?

And what does a monkey from the rainforests of West Africa have to do with grammar? The answers to these questions have one thing in common: they are all related to how animals communicate with one another. In this course we will explore the fascinating and bizarre world of animal communication through diverse readings, including popular science articles and primary sources from the cutting edge of research. Writing assignments will develop your skills in synthesizing and critiquing the scientific literature, and in communicating your ideas with conciseness and clarity.

SEM 101 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Mickey Pardo 17842 Tracy Carrick

 

CLASSICS 1531

Greek Myth

This course will focus on the stories about the gods and heroes of the Greeks as they appear in ancient literature and art. We will examine the relationship between myths and the cultural, religious, and political conditions of the society in which they took shape. Beginning with theories of myth and proceeding to the analysis of individual stories and cycles, the material will serve as a vehicle for improving your written communication skills. Assignments include preparatory writing and essays focusing on readings and discussions in class.

SEM 101 MWF 11:15–12:05 p.m. Dennis Alley 17702 Eric Rebillard

 

COMPARATIVE LITERATURE 1104

Reading Films

We live in an image-saturated world. How do we make sense of the moving image and its powerful roles in shaping culture and mediating our relationship with the world? This course will equip students with the tools to understand and decipher film language. It introduces and interrogates the basic notions, technologies, terminologies, and theories of film analysis. We will study visual and compositional elements, like mise-en-scène, cinematography, editing, and sound. Films we discuss will include different geographies, genres, major directors, schools, and film movements, such as Hong Kong New Wave and La Nouvelle Vague. Through writing, students will learn to analyze films with accurate, medium-specific vocabulary, develop informed and nuanced arguments, and critically reflect on the position of the viewer.

SEM 101 MWF 12:20–01:10 p.m. Van Nguyen Tuong Le 17703 Debra Castillo

 

COMPARATIVE LITERATURE 1105

Books with Big Ideas

What do Frankenstein and Things Fall Apart have in common? What lies behind the fantastical stories of Aladdin? Do we have to like Garcia Marquez and Shakespeare? These texts and authors re-imagine the human experience at its most intriguing level. In this course we will discuss human rights, intimacy, joy, isolation, and other controversies at the heart of these books. Throughout the semester, students will learn how to articulate an informed and nuanced position on these issues via formal practices in analytical readings, drafting, peer review, and self-editing. Actual selection of readings may vary depending on the instructor’s focus.

 

COMPARATIVE LITERATURE 1106

Robots

In 2015 Japan’s SoftBank Robotics Corporation announced the world’s first robot with feelings. Many people were excited, many more disturbed. If robots are simply, as the dictionary suggests, machines “designed to function in the place of a living agent,” then what is so disturbing about them? Since robots are designed to replace human labor (first economic, and now also emotional), do they represent a threat as much as they do an aid? What happens when robots exceed their purpose, and become more humanlike? How do robots read, write, and feel?

How do the activities of coding and writing, or decoding and reading differ? Students will be equipped with the vocabulary and writing strategies to rigorously analyze, compare, and debate the meaning of robots in the human imagination from different epochs, countries, languages, and media. In doing so they will write in a variety of registers about plays such as R.U.R. by Karel ?apek, who invented the term “robot.” Other materials may include philosophical texts, fiction, videogames, films, graphic novels, and hip-hop concept albums.

 

COMPARATIVE LITERATURE 1113

Poetry’s Image

Where do we get our images of poetry, and of poets? Along with the images we find in poems themselves, how do poetry and poets figure in fiction and film, in philosophy and popular culture? How do such figures inform the images in poems, poetry’s image? In what senses is poetry a liberal art? What is its relation to self, to language, history, politics, other disciplines, and discourses? This course will explore such issues in a wide range of short texts in both verse and prose, in fiction, film, and other media. The course’s focus on poetry's image will encourage students to make connections between such self-reflexive practices in the texts they are reading and viewing and the texts they themselves produce in their own writing. Authors include Plato, Wordsworth, Poe, Dickinson, Baudelaire, Whitman, Rimbaud, Stein, Breton, Stevens, Neruda, Borges, Wittgenstein, Celan, Rich, Brathwaite, Waldrop, Collins, Swenson, and Bolaño.

SEM 101 MWF 11:15–12:05 p.m. Jonathan Monroe 18009

 

COMPARATIVE LITERATURE 1115

On Alienation and Empathy

Have you ever been frustrated with only existing inside your own mind? In this course we will read what authors and thinkers have written about differences between groups of people—like race and gender–and about the difference between any two people, which makes it hard to feel like we “really know” someone. We will write about how these differences relate to each other, and what we would want to change about them. We will read stories that allow us to reach across distance and know something, but also how, in the information age, they demonstrate what we cannot know. You will learn how to read deeply and critically (poems, short stories, a novel); and how to write clearly and analytically (analyses, comparisons, argumentation). The reading for class will include work from the United States, Israel, South Africa, and Sudan.

SEM 101 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Nitzan Tal 17707 Debra Castillo

 

COMPARATIVE LITERATURE 1119

A Taste of Russian Literature

Explore the culinary tradition and culture of Russia in broad historical, geopolitical, and socioeconomic context through the lens of Russian folklore, short stories of Gogol, Chekhov, and Bulgakov, works of contemporary Russian-American writers, visual art, and international film. The literary journey will take you from the lavish tables of the XVIII-century aristocracy, to the hardship and austerity of GULAG prison, to the colorful and savory regional fare of the former Russian Empire and Soviet Union, to the fridge and pantry staples in the everyday life of Russian family. Your writing assignments will help you develop critical thinking and argumentative skills, precision and clarity of expression, ability to write with discipline, creativity, and a sense of style.

SEM 101 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Raissa Krivitsky 17708

 

CITY AND REGIONAL PLANNING 1109

Anatomy of the City

This seminar dissects the inner workings of the city, exploring the discourses and politics of infrastructure and municipal service provision, using domestic and international cases. The course begins with an introductory overview of topics, such as mobility, water, waste, power, and other technologies of the built environment, but offers a critical lens for examining and expanding the concept of infrastructure, as well as the role of planners, builders, city governments, and civil society in shaping it. The course will also deal with examples of innovation, conflict, and resource scarcity (i.e., “thirsty cities”). Through discussion, short essays, and a final paper, students will have an opportunity to present their own questions and analyses on a topic of their choosing related to course themes.

SEM 101 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Shoshana Goldstein 17712 Stephan Schmidt

 

DEVELOPMENT SOCIOLOGY 1200

The Color and Class of Water: Environmental Justice and Public Health

The lead crisis in Flint, Michigan and the protests at Standing Rock are among the recent moments of social unrest concerning development. Communities around the globe are facing rising inequities often involving resources like water. Studying social aspects of water crises helps reveal class and race disparities within resource management. Water conflict resolution depends on greater understanding of the power struggles within environmental planning. Students in this course will advance their comprehension of inequalities, with the help of research from environmental justice, public health, and sociology. Students will refine their communication skills by exploring narrative voice, clarity of argument, and the ability to explain academic material to non-academic audiences. Assignments will include evidence-based research papers, creative journalism projects, and peer review workshops.

SEM 101 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Theresa Pendergrast 17713 Tracy Carrick

 

DEVELOPMENT SOCIOLOGY 1200

Go Forth and Multiply? Enduring Debates on “Overpopulation”

Is population growth pushing the earth’s limited resources to the breaking point? Are projections of “10 billion by 2050” an imminent sign of ecological collapse? Is it folly to believe technological innovations can extend the earth’s limits? These momentous questions, and the deeply divided responses they provoke, are at the heart of the modern environmentalism debate. In this course we examine these questions using a historical perspective to uncover the social values underpinning competing views on “overpopulation.” Through varied writing assignments (annotations, short essays, research paper) students will learn to critically evaluate historical and contemporary claims on the consequences of population growth, construct evidence-based arguments, and effectively communicate with a research-focused audience. Course materials will include scientific research, historical articles, media articles, and short videos.

SEM 102 MW 08:40–09:55 a.m. Sneha Kumar 17714 Tracy Carrick

 

ENGLISH 1105

Writing and Sexual Politics: Disobedient Women, Untamable Words

Life and literature are full of rules. What happens if you break them? In the course we will read texts by and about women who are rule-breakers; all of them are in some way “too much” (too opinionated, too angry, too large or too small, too emotional, too ugly, too strange). Our subjects will be uncomfortable, taboo, unconventional, and fearless. With authors such as Alison Bechdel, Audre Lorde, Virginia Woolf, and Han Kang, this class will ask students to question not only the rules of the world we live in, but of our language itself. Writing both analytically and creatively, students will be encouraged to push boundaries with the questions they ask, the positions they take, and their very practice of writing.

SEM 101 MWF 11:15–12:05 p.m. Emily Mercurio 17716 Ellis Hanson

 

ENGLISH 1105

Writing and Sexual Politics: Naming and Exposure

What does it mean to name an act between bodies, or, more acutely, what is the complication of using a given name for an act between bodies? Can the absence of naming an act provide more radical or more truthful engagement with a body, even one's own in only its own companionship with self? And where does power exist in the discourse of physical interplay? With these questions and more as guide, we will consider the compositions instructing our identities as sexual beings and how writing can negotiate the dynamics of power, physicality, and the erotic, isolated, and violent psyches.

SEM 102 MWF 12:20–01:10 p.m. Annie Goold 17717 Ellis Hanson

 

ENGLISH 1105

Writing and Sexual Politics: What’s Love Got to Do With It? The Political Force of “Love”

From Simone de Beauvoir to Shulamith Firestone, feminists have argued that romantic love is tangled up with gender oppression. Queer theorists, meanwhile, critique nuclear family love as a burden of conformism, reclaiming romantic desire, sexual pleasure, and different kinship formations instead. However, Martin Luther King's non-violent philosophy emerged from his concept “agape”—unconditional love for all God's children. This course traces these contestations over the political force of love: How has it been differently represented or served contradictory political ends? Is love even representable or does it involve a different kind of embodied communication? Such questions will be woven into writing instruction and assignments which will engage authors such as Carolivia Herron, Radclyffe Hall, and examples of popular romance such as Titanic or The Notebook.

SEM 103 MWF 01:25–02:15 p.m. Katherine Thorsteinson 17718 Ellis Hanson

 

ENGLISH 1105

Writing and Sexual Politics: Queer Cinema

How do films help us to think differently about identity, sexuality, and desire? In pursuit of this question, this course explores queer films from around the globe and from the mid-twentieth century to the present day. Students will learn basic film concepts as they engage with cinema’s exploration of the overlaps and tensions between class, race, gender, sexuality, and able-bodiedness. We will also sample some works of film criticism as part of our consideration of the larger conversations in which the films participate. Directors whose work we may explore include the following: Pedro Almodovar, Percy Adlon, Stephen Cone, Ang Lee, Spike Jonze, and John Cameron Mitchell. This course will involve a variety of creative and analytical writing assignments.

SEM 104 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Zachary Grobe 17719 Ellis Hanson

 

ENGLISH 1105

Writing and Sexual Politics: Literature and Sexual Violence

How do we understand sexual violence? How does literature frame our understanding? This course will undertake an exploration of these questions in relation to works by Ariel Dorfman, J. M. Coetzee, Tarfia Faizullah, and others. We will consider how problems of sexual violence are bound up with constructs of history, nationality, law, and morality, while centering issues of a fundamentally literary nature—issues of authority, narration, genre, and interpretation. Acknowledging our proximity to contemporary American cultural contexts while turning to the cultural contexts of Bangladesh, South Africa, Chile, etc., we will raise the question of sexual violence on intellectual, emotional, cultural, and political grounds. Students will craft a variety of written responses to the course materials, including personal essays, analytical essays, and research papers.

SEM 105 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Samuel Lagasse 17720 Ellis Hanson

 

ENGLISH 1111

Writing Across Cultures: Sick and Well Bodies

The way we think about our body—as a machine, as a computer program, or as a prison for the soul—affects how we experience pain, illness, and our sense of self. In this course you will read literature about the body in sickness and in health in order to examine how disease is the result of biology but also social, cultural, and historical factors. What stories did people tell about the spread of plague prior to the advent of modern medicine? How did “understanding” the cause of disease change the way it was experienced? Texts will range across historical periods, focusing on poetry, prose, and non-fiction writing, but also including films and visual media. You will produce analysis, literary criticism, personal, and creative pieces.

SEM 101 MWF 11:15–12:05 p.m. Philippa Chun 17721 Masha Raskolnikov

 

ENGLISH 1111

Writing Across Cultures: South Asia through Fiction

What is South Asia? What binds this vast region together? How can we talk about its culture, history, politics, and conflicts without reducing it to a stereotype? What does Tibet have in common with Sri Lanka or the mountains of Nepal with the atolls of the Maldives? What differentiates Arundhati Roy’s India from Mohammad Hanif’s Pakistan? In this course we will attempt to answer these questions by looking critically at fiction from the area, including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, and Sri Lanka. Writing assignments for this class will include five critical essays, three of which will go through a substantial revision/rewriting process.

SEM 102 MWF 12:20–01:10 p.m. Weena Pun 17722 Masha Raskolnikov

 

ENGLISH 1111

Writing Across Cultures: How Not to Write

“It was a dark and stormy night:” With this opening sentence of his 1830 novel Paul Clifford, Edward Bulwer-Lytton created an archetype for what we consider bad writing. But . . . what is bad writing? Is it simply a matter of grammar and punctuation, of purple prose, of incoherence, or does it extend deeper into the soul of the work? If so, who cares? In a subjective world where “art” can pass as different things to different people, who is to say what “bad” writing really is? By reading, watching, listening, and writing, we’ll try to explore and uncover what we really mean when we say something is “bad” writing. Course prerequisite: Are you a bad writer? Good!

SEM 103 MWF 01:25–02:15 p.m. Shane Kowalski 17723 Masha Raskolnikov

 

ENGLISH 1111

Writing Across Cultures: Games and Contests—Writing About Place and Motion

Athletic contests have served as symbols and structures for stories nearly as long as they have been written down. From funerals in the Iliad to Pindar’s Olympic champions to the Aeneid’s boat races to biblical metaphors of salvation to David Foster Wallace’s essays to the broken bodies of B. H. Fairchild’s outfielders, human contests serve up striking images, memorable characters, and intense emotions. We’ll read ancient epics, medieval poetry, modern essays, and theory, all focusing on literal and figurative contests, the poetics of athletics, and the intricate contracts of games. We’ll ask questions about these relationships and about the importance of agony through an examination of literary structures, formal poetics, and philosophy of place and motion. Assignments will include several academic essays and some creative writing.

SEM 104 MWF 01:25–02:15 p.m. Seth Strickland 17724 Masha Raskolnikov

 

ENGLISH 1111

Writing Across Cultures: Bollywood in the Twenty-First Century

In 2013 India celebrated 100 years of Indian cinema, prompting an examination of the history of film and renewed enthusiasm regarding novel approaches to film—film-makers invented and reinvented aspects of films, re-imagining everything from the idea of the feature film to the “item number.” This course will examine Bollywood cinema in the new millennium to understand how films change in the twenty-first century, and the structures that both led to and developed from these changes. Through project-based writing assignments, we will locate Bollywood films in contemporary Indian cultural spaces, politics, and literature. In addition to interrogating Bollywood films on their own turf, we will also study Bollywood in relation to other film industries, and pay attention to the way films circulate regionally, nationally, and globally.

SEM 105 TR 08:40–09:55 a.m. Krithika Vachali 17725 Masha Raskolnikov

 

ENGLISH 1111

Writing Across Cultures: Speculative Histories of Slavery and Colonialism

Many literary and cultural works use speculative elements—time travel, cyborgs, magic, and more—to refract the histories of transatlantic slavery and the dispossession of indigenous people through settler colonialism. In this course we will consider literature, television, music, and art that use speculative tropes to create new modes of historical thinking and new political possibilities for abolition and decolonization. Why might speculative fiction be useful for considering the legacies of historical atrocities and generating new social imaginaries? Class texts may include novels by Colson Whitehead, Octavia Butler, and Stephen Graham Jones; multimedia by First Nations artist Skawennati; music by Sun Ra, Janelle Monáe, and Beyoncé; and the television show Cleverman. Assignments may include reflection papers, a historical research paper, a class podcast, and a piece of fanfiction.

SEM 107 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Gabriella Friedman 17727 Masha Raskolnikov

 

ENGLISH 1111

Writing Across Cultures: Love Poems After 1900

Who is “allowed” to write love poems? And why? In this course we will listen closely to the voices in love poetry often talked over (women, people of color, the queer community) in popular culture. We will examine older patterns of metaphor used in talking about the beloved as well as entertain newer, fresher language that expresses amorous feelings. The work of poets Garcia Lorca, Siken, Sexton, Salinas, Swenson, Lorde, and Nelson will be discussed, among others.

SEM 108 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Lindsey Warren 17728 Masha Raskolnikov

 

ENGLISH 1111

Writing Across Cultures: The Uncaged Narrator

Writer Jerome Chayn once said, “The novel was born free but everywhere I see it in chains.” There are certain expectations and rules when it comes to writing, especially when it comes to narration. But when do these rules becomes constraints, and what happens when writers disobey or challenge these barriers? We will draw on examples that are considered both traditional and nontraditional to answer these questions. From the drug-addled narration of Denis Johnson’s short fiction and narrative insanity of Kathryn Davis’ Duplex to the fragmentary memoirs of Maggie Nelson and aggressive lyric “I” of punk songs, we will explore and dispute our notions of voice, narration, and structure. This uncomfortable and uncertain space will be our point of focus throughout the semester. Analytical and creative writing will encourage students to know the rules before breaking them.

SEM 109 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Mario Giannone 17729 Masha Raskolnikov

 

ENGLISH 1134

True Stories

When students write personal essays for college applications, they often discover just how challenging writing about and presenting themselves to the public can be. In this course we’ll examine how well-known authors such as Maxine Hong Kingston, Alison Bechdel, Tim O’Brien, and others construct their public, written selves. We’ll consider how an author’s self-presentation affects how readers interpret the experiences, insights, and knowledge presented in each text; we’ll also consider how the style of writing affects how readers understand an author’s personality and motives. Readings will include short essays, possibly some poems, and a few longer works. Together, and writing frequent essays, we’ll explore why and how people write about themselves—for self-exploration, political or social change, purely to practice a form of art, or for other reasons—and we’ll investigate how writing shapes lived experience.

 

ENGLISH 1147

The Mystery in the Story

What makes a story, and what makes it a mystery story? In this course we’ll study and write about the nature of narratives, taking the classic mystery tale written by such writers as Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie, and Raymond Chandler as typical of intricately plotted stories of suspense and disclosure that have been written and filmed in many genres: Greek tragedy, horror tales by Poe and Shirley Jackson, psychological thrillers by Ruth Rendell and Patricia Highsmith, neo-noir films such as Memento and Fight Club, and postmodern mystery parodies such as those of Paul Auster and Jorge Luis Borges. We’ll look at the way they hold together, the desire and fear that drive them, and the secrets they tell—or try to keep hidden.

 

ENGLISH 1158

American Voices: New Southern Black Narratives

The last 25 years has seen a period of art created by southern Black Americans that have traversed national and international appeal. But what is it about the southern black experience that has connected with those who are neither black nor from the American South? And how do these artists navigate their blackness while also discussing issues like gender, class, and sexuality? Through close and critical reading, discussion, and writing students will analyze texts from Jesmyn Ward, Natasha Tretheway, Beyoncè, OutKast, and the television show Atlanta (among others) to try to understand how southern black artists thwart archetypical stereotypes to tell their own stories of the American South.

SEM 101 MW 08:40–09:55 a.m. Shakarean Hutchinson 17788 Neil Saccamano

 

ENGLISH 1158

American Voices: Haunting and American Literature

In this course we will investigate the theme of “the haunt” in all its senses—the being that haunts and the space that is haunted, as well as a place that one returns to. How does the haunt challenge our everyday notions about time and place, sensation and embodiment? We will seek to understand how haunting reframes basic Western metaphysical and epistemological assumptions about reality. The course will contend that the emphasis on ghosts, the gothic, and haunting in American literature is indissociably tied to the historic racial and sexual traumas resulting from the nation’s founding imbrication with colonization and the trans-Atlantic slave trade. We will primarily consult American fiction drawn from the nineteenth to the twenty-first century, but may also look at philosophy and film.

SEM 102 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Austin Lillywhite 17789 Neil Saccamano

 

ENGLISH 1158

American Voices: Latinx Literature

LatinX is new. Earlier examples include Latina/o, Hispanic, and Brown. Using LatinX as a point of departure, we’ll go super high into poetry/fiction written by writers who might be identified as LatinX. Readings will embrace Javier Zamora, Sandra Cisneros, Justin Torres, and others. Not all writers included will necessarily be LatinX. The goal will be moving through writing assignments intended to answer preliminary questions: What is LatinX? And who am I? And do these descriptions even matter?

SEM 103 TR 11:40–12:55 p.m. Leo Rios 17790 Neil Saccamano

 

ENGLISH 1167

Great New Books

Would you be able to identify the Shakespeare or Austen of your time? What are the best books being written today and how do we know they are great? What role do critics, prizes, book clubs, and movie adaptations play in establishing the appeal and prestige of new literature? Are there some books that are great in their moment and others that will be considered great for generations to come? These are some of the questions we’ll explore as we read, discuss, and write critical essays about several of the most acclaimed books published in the last twenty years. Our readings will include works in a range of genres, from novels and memoirs to poetry and graphic novels.

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Aliens on Safari—African Science Fiction

Celebrated science fiction (SF) author Nnedi Okorafor once provocatively queried in a blogpost, “is Africa ready for science fiction?” The proliferation of SF literature and films from the continent have answered with a resounding, “yes!” In this course students will explore the science fiction genre and critically interrogate the ways in which African authors and artists deploy SF-specific conceits and strategies in their work. Through multiple film viewings and stimulating readings of literature and critical essays, we will engage and debate terms and concepts such as “afrofuturism” and “jujutech” while we work to define SF on the continent. Students will write both critical and creative essays that culminate in a final creative “making” project in collaboration with the Mann Library Makerspace.

SEM 101 MWF 10:10–11:00 a.m. Emma Kioko 17809 Caroline Levine

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Humor and Healing in Black Art

What is it about the African American literary tradition that has given birth to some of the most insightful comedy? With trauma comes different ways of mediating pain; comedy is one way of navigating that pain while also understanding why our need to laugh goes hand in hand with interrogating personal, communal, and historical suffering. As such, this course draws on a number of literary-historical moments, including black vaudeville, the works of novelists including George Schuyler (Black No More) and Fran Ross (Oreo). In keeping with the theme of the course, students will work in a number of genres of writing including creative nonfiction and close reading.

SEM 102 MWF 12:20–01:10 p.m. Gary Slack 17810 Caroline Levine

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Sacred Books as Literature

Nearly four billion of the world's inhabitants adhere to one of the three Abrahamic faiths: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. These religions and their sacred books have shaped global culture for thousands of years, with their ideas about creation, divine order, ethics, faith, salvation, history, and apocalypse. This course considers selections from the Jewish, Christian, and Muslim scriptures—not theologically, but as literature, examining their images, stories, themes, differences, similarities, as well as their textual histories and their cultural afterlives in art, drama, and literary history. Class discussion and writing assignments will be rigorously academic, and focus on literary questions.

SEM 103 MWF 01:25–02:15 p.m. Jonathan Reinhardt 17811 Caroline Levine

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: A Balm in Wakanda—Black Speculative Thought

Black speculative thought (commonly called Afrofuturism) has experienced a recent explosion of production. It reached the mainstream with the recordbreaking 2018 release of Black Panther, but the future and the fantastic have served as sites for black transformation and healing earlier than the turn of the last century. Over the semester we will consider a range of Afrofuturist literature and culture, including selections from Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man, Black Panther: World of Wakanda, the oeuvres of musicians from Sun-Ra to Janelle Monae, and visual/performance art. In writing critically and creatively about black speculative literature and culture, students will analyze the sociopolitical necessities of a black speculative turn in the present and the implications of this turn for the future of black people and the universe.

SEM 104 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Elizabeth Alexander 17812 Caroline Levine

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Writing with Animals

In the twenty-first century relationships among humans and non-human animals have changed: while we have largely ceased to live closely with animals in agricultural settings, the experiences of animals themselves have attracted increasing interest. Sentient but not necessarily rational, animals figure both as problems and spurs to the imagination in literature, theory, and popular culture. How can we understand and depict animal lives? How does our conception of what it is like to be nonhuman affect our ethical relationships? How do animals figure in representations of racial and environmental injustice? In this writing course we will explore how animals are represented in a wide range of fiction, poetry, film, philosophy, and theory. Authors include Kipling, Woolf, Murakami, and Coetzee.

SEM 105 MWF 01:25–02:15 p.m. Elisha Cohn 17813

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Being the Best You—A History of Self-Help

Get ready to say yes: yes to a better, brighter, and more confident you; yes to conquering your fears; yes to a well-balanced reading load, peer-editing, ample revisions, and submitting assignments and papers in a timely manner! This course critically surveys self-help and etiquette manuals from Samuel Smiles’ 1859  Self-Help to Tim Ferriss’s Four-Hour Body, James Fordyce’s Sermons to Young Women to Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In. What sociological and historical factors lead to the rise of the self-help and etiquette manual? Why do these texts still top best-sellers lists and crowd the front of bookstores? What are the implications of the authority we attach to these guides?

SEM 106 TR 08:40–09:55 a.m. Malcolm Bare 17814 Caroline Levine

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Fans, Fantasies, and Feminism

“Fan fiction” is sometimes used rhetorically to mean the opposite of “literature”—a kind of writing supposed to have neither artistic nor commercial value, the (embarrassing!) public expression of fantasies that would be better left private. We’ll read some feminist scholarship to help us answer that charge. When we’re not getting our theory on, we’ll go full-on media nerd, cultivating a shared canon of fannish classics like Star Trek, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Harry Potter. We’ll consider fiction on the edge, like Fifty Shades or Star Wars novels. And we’ll read plenty of fan fiction and watch loads of fan vids. Warning label: Students who take this course should be aware that the syllabus contains sexually explicit material, much of it homoerotic.

SEM 107   TR 10:10–11:25 a.m.   Jane Glaubman   17815   Caroline Levine

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: D.I.Y. or DIE

What does it mean to “do it yourself”? How have collectives of artists historically mobilized against mainstream commercialism, as well as the cultural forces of patriarchy, white supremacy, heteronormativity, and capitalism? When and why have they succeeded or failed? Through an examination of various U.S. grassroots arts communities—with a particular focus on D.I.Y. punk and zine culture from the 1980s to the present—this course will delve into these questions. Assigned texts may include zines, albums, documentaries, oral histories of music scenes, and works of critical theory on community, self-governance, and utopian thought (e.g., José Esteban Muñoz, Emma Goldman, and Hannah Arendt). Assignments will include reports on local art scenes and zines, a sequence of formal essays, and a final collaborative creative project.

SEM 108 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Martin Cain 17816 Caroline Levine

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Culture, Politics, and Policies of American Inequality

Political trends leading up to the 2016 presidential election have left many unusually confused, enraged, or apathetic about the debates and policies informing American governance. Politics in particular are continuing a decades-long trend of competitive messaging tactics that too often belie substantive discussions about racial, gender, and economic inequalities. Corresponding to this, popular notions of liberalism and conservatism have atrophied into ideological encampments, just as the Internet has further enabled news outlets to undercut or distort reasonable discourse needed to enhance those notions. How is one to be reasonably informed? We will consider the works of political theorists, legal scholars, economists, journalists, essayists, and artists to write about and discuss these problems in earnest.

SEM 109 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Peter Gilbert 17817 Caroline Levine

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Reading, Writing, Romance (1855–2018)

What do you think of when someone says "romance"? As a genre, romance can mean at least two different things: a story of travel, heroism, and adventure, or a love story. Part Two of this two-part course (either can be taken separately) follows romance as it collides with the horrifying consequences of colonization and slavery. Melville’s Benito Cereno, poems by Tennyson and Christina Rossetti, Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God, and Carson’s Autobiography of Red reveal the persistence of romance through trauma and stylistic change. Students who follow the class through both semesters have the option of submitting a longer final essay linking a major work of popular culture ( Black Panther? Star Wars? Harry Potter?) to the traditions of literary romance.

SEM 110 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Jane Glaubman 17818 Caroline Levine

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Poem/Song/Sound

What happens when poetic language is sounded out—spoken, performed, sung, or recorded? In this course we’ll open our eyes and ears to the complex relationship between poetic language, sound, and popular song in the twentieth century by studying a broad array of text and audio objects (plenty of poems and songs, yes, but also some stranger things like sound art, sound poems, nursery rhymes, slam poetry, etc.) and by engaging with some less familiar reading and performance practices (prosodic analysis, close listening, poetry recitation, etc.). Critical attention to the sounds that language makes—to all its excellent nonsense!—will make us more sensitive and sensible writers ourselves. Assignments will include argumentative analyses, critical meditations, and some creative poem-, sound-, and song-making of our own.

SEM 111 MWF 12:20–01:10 p.m. Matthew Kilbane 17819 Neil Saccamano

 

ENGLISH 1168

Cultural Studies: Writing About Zombies

Zombies have existed at some level of reality for centuries, walking the uncertain spaces between binary “certainties” such as us and them, rich and poor, slave and master, and, of course, alive and dead. This class will explore the presence of zombies in the global popular imagination and will examine how zombies occupy a variety of spaces where contemporary social tensions are reflected and refracted.

SEM 112 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Shaawano Chad Uran 18231

 

ENGLISH 1170

Short Stories

What is the difference between an anecdote and a short story or a memoir and a short story? How does the short story separate itself from the prose poem, the myth, or the parable? What can a short story do that no other art form can do, including cinematic narrative? This course will focus on the reading and analysis of short stories derived from a range of cultures and time periods, with some emphasis on English-language stories, particularly those from the North American continent. Writers may include but not be limited to: Tobias Wolff, Alice Munro, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Willa Cather, Edgar Allan Poe, Nikolai Gogol, Eudora Welty, Louise Erdrich, Haruki Murakami, Denis Johnson, Margaret Atwood, Donald Barthelme, Flannery O'Connor, Edith Wharton, Raymond Carver, Joyce Carol Oates, and Anton Chekhov. There will be a research component and some workshop discussion of student work.

 

ENGLISH 1183

Word and Image

Writers and artists from Homer to Raymond Pettibon have been fascinated by the relationship between words and images, a relationship that is sometimes imagined as a competition, sometimes as a collaboration. What are the differences between literary and visual media? What can the juxtaposition of word and image teach us about the nature of representation? What other goals do artists and writers hope to achieve by coupling words with images? To explore these questions, we will consult works drawn from a range of periods and genres (graphic novels, medieval manuscripts, contemporary art and new media, emblem books, film, literary gaming, fiction, and poetry). The course is structured around a progressive set of writing assignments and will include both informal exercises as well as formal essays.

SEM 101 MWF 10:10–11:00 a.m. Christopher Hewitt 17737 Brad Zukovic SEM 102   TR 08:40–09:55 a.m.                     Joseph Miranda                                              17738 Brad Zukovic

ENGLISH 1183

Word and Image

Writers and artists from Homer to Raymond Pettibon have been fascinated by the relationship between words and images, a relationship that is sometimes imagined as a competition, sometimes as a collaboration. What are the differences between literary and visual media? What can the juxtaposition of word and image teach us about the nature of representation? What other goals do artists and writers hope to achieve by coupling words with images? To explore these questions, we will consult works drawn from a range of periods and genres (graphic novels, medieval manuscripts, contemporary art and new media, emblem books, film, literary gaming, fiction, and poetry). The course is structured around a progressive set of writing assignments and will include both informal exercises as well as formal essays.

 

ENGLISH 1191

British Literature: Collecting Your Thoughts in Nineteenth-Century Britain

What do you like to collect? Stamps? Shells? Coins? Cats? Nineteenth-century Britain is known for its zealous collectors, and this class uses the era's collecting craze as an occasion to consider how academic writing, too, is a process of collecting things—be they ideas, words, or phrases—in order to assemble an argument. We’ll read texts that feature obsessive collectors as well as ones containing collections of textual fragments. Exploring Sherlock Holmes stories and Darwin’s autobiography alongside modern reconfigurations of Victorian novels, we’ll learn how collecting practices elicited questions of mental health, wealth, and scientific method, ultimately setting the standard by which we judge collectors and their narratives today. Visits to the Johnson Museum’s curiosity cabinet, Wilder Brain collection, and Olin Library’s rare book room will supplement readings.

SEM 101 MWF 10:10–11:00 a.m. Amelia Hall 17827 Neil Saccamano

 

ENGLISH 1191

British Literature: Making the Medieval/Early Modern Miscellany

Like assembling a playlist of your favorite songs, making a medieval miscellany—a book-length compilation of various literary works—was a painstaking process, but one which contributed to modern ways of thinking about the book. In this course we will explore the origins and early evolution of the book as we consider questions of compilation, editing, and textual production in relation to medieval manuscripts, early printed books, and the literary texts they contain. We will also draw on the works of modern authors as we ask what the book as material object can tell us about its makers and readers, how compilation and anthologization can be interpreted as editorial acts, and what, finally, goes into the making of a book.

SEM 102 TR 11:40–12:55 p.m. Grace Catherine Greiner 17828 Neil Saccamano

 

GERMAN STUDIES 1109

From Fairy Tales to the Uncanny: Exploring the Romantic Consciousness

How did bawdy tales of peasants using magic to climb the social ladder get transformed into moral lessons for children? The answer lies in Romanticism and its appropriation of the imagination as a force for social transformation. As Romantics edited older tales for juvenile consumption they wrote new ones for adults. This new fiction created the matrix for modern pop genres like fantasy, science-fiction, murder mysteries, and gothic horror. To understand this paradigm shift in modern culture, we will read, discuss, and write about a variety of texts the Romantics collected, composed, or inspired, including poetry and film, in addition to classic fairy tales and academic scholarship on the topic.

 

GERMAN STUDIES 1121

Writing Berlin

Germany’s capital is a city that constantly reinvents itself. This course will offer a glimpse into Berlin’s rich history in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries—from the rise of the metropolis during the Weimar Republic to the rubble after WWII to today’s multifaceted, multicultural, forward-looking capital. We will explore points of view, images, and perceptions of Berlin and its people in the literary productions of writers such as Siegfried Kracauer, Alfred Döblin, Kurt Tucholsky, Wolfdietrich Schnurre, Monika Maron, Wladimir Kaminer, Emine Sevgi Özdamar, and Kathrin Röggla. We will discuss changing identities (nation, class, gender, and ethnicity, for example), consult works of literary critics and scholars, practice attentive reading and writing, and learn to construct evidence-based arguments of our own.

SEM 101 MW 08:40–09:55 a.m. Ekaterina Pirozhenko 17750

 

GERMAN STUDIES 1170

Marx, Nietzsche, Freud

A basic understanding of Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud is a prerequisite for participating in critical debates in the humanities and social sciences. Our seminar will explore key terms in the revolutionary models of critical analysis these thinkers pioneered: historical materialism, post-metaphysical philosophy, and psychoanalysis. This will mean articulating points of contrast as well as convergence. Discussions and writing exercises will focus on texts that created the discursive framework for critiquing society and culture today. Our method will proceed from the premise that critical reading, thinking, and writing are inseparable moments in the same operation of critique. The question that guides that method will be: Do alternative ways of thinking exist in opposition to the ones we view as natural, inevitable, or universal?

 

GOVERNMENT 1101

Power and Politics: Human Rights Activism

This course examines efforts on the part of social movements, non-governmental organizations, and international institutions like the United Nations to promote human rights. The course begins with an investigation into the meaning of human rights and the construction of local, regional, and international human rights organizations. The second part of the course studies what these movements and organizations do to further their mission of protecting human rights. The course closes with a discussion of contemporary human rights issues and critiques of the human rights paradigm. The class serves as an introduction to academic and real-world debates on human rights and aims to empower students to engage in these debates through an emphasis on clear and persuasive writing.

SEM 101 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Whitney Taylor 17754 Jonathan Kirshner

 

HISTORY 1123

The Birth of Europe? Society and Culture in the Carolingian Empire

Every year, the German city of Aachen awards the Charlemagne Prize to individuals who have promoted European unity. At a time when the value and existence of the European Union are increasingly questioned, we should perhaps look back at the medieval king from whom the prize takes its name. The legacy of Charlemagne and his dynasty, the Carolingians, has haunted us until the present day. In the present course, we will follow medieval Europe’s most famous family from their rise in post-Roman Gaul to their supposed decline two centuries later. Our purpose is not simply to count kings and their famous deeds, but to unravel the social and cultural dynamics of the Carolingian period by surveying a variety of legal, historical, and religious sources. Writing assignments will ask students to draw evidence from these sources to support historical arguments.

SEM 101   TR 01:25–02:40 p.m.   Maximillian McComb  17755

SEM 102   TR 02:55–04:10 p.m.   Maximillian McComb  17756

 

HISTORY 1200

Writing History: A European History of Despair

Decadence, degeneracy, and decline: this is a course on the history of hopelessness in nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century Europe. Famously a period of grand optimisms—in cultural development, political progress, and technological advancement—the nineteenth century also saw an explosion of new socio-cultural anxieties and pathologies. Students will use the tools of culturo-intellectual history to trace the question of despair through readings and writings on a variety of interlocking themes: the death of god; capitalism and urban industrialism; cultures of suicide; criminology and population sciences; the First World War; and more. In doing so, we will trace a “counter-history” of European modernity—one that asks how a period with such grand faith in the ability of humankind to perfect itself and the world also gave birth to such pervasive visions of decline.

SEM 101 MW 07:30–08:45 p.m. Nicholas Bujalski 17767 Tamara Loos

 

HISTORY 1200

Writing History: Writing the Environment

How do we tell the stories of the environments that surround us? This course explores how contemporary writers blend observation, history, interviews, and scientific research to tell these stories. From climate change to the grassy park down the street, the subjects this course addresses grant us an opportunity to discuss topical environmental and social concerns, and to examine how writers have successfully and artfully approached these issues. Readings include authors such as Annie Dillard, Ian Frazier, Jesmyn Ward, and John McPhee, among others, and brief selections from environmental theorists and thinkers. Writing assignments will include short exercises to hone specific writing skills and essays that will ask you to question and be critical of the environments in which you spend your time.

SEM 102 MW 07:30–08:45 p.m. Matthew Dallos 17768 Tamara Loos

 

HISTORY 1200

Writing History: Informal Empire and Capitalism in Latin America

You may have wondered, why do we call some theories ”scientific,“ but not others? Do we really know the sun will come up tomorrow? Where do babies come from? To answer these questions, we will tackle classic puzzles and new problems in the philosophy of science. Topics will include the problem of induction, how to distinguish science from pseudoscience, and bias in scientific practice. Readings will include works by authors like Pierre Duhem, Karl Popper, Thomas Kuhn, Louise Antony, and Helen Longino, among others. Students will complete writing assignments that build skills like accuracy, clarity, and coherence. Through writing, students will learn to rigorously present philosophical debates over scientific orthodoxy and practice, and situate their own views within these debates.

SEM 103 MW 08:40–09:55 a.m. Kyle Harvey 17769 Tamara Loos

 

HISTORY 1200

Writing History: These Violent United States—The Making of Trump’s America

For many, Donald Trump’s election disrupted an enduring progress narrative of American history, indicating a need for new explanatory frameworks. This course will explore how histories of violence might help us differently frame modern U.S. history to explain the current social and political reality. Students will be guided through the process of constructing an argument and conducting research to produce coherent, concise, and engaging essays for both popular and academic audiences. Students will be required to read about, and write responses to, the Oklahoma City bombing, the model and monitored minorities, illegal immigration, the rise of the KKK, and mass incarceration, among others, with an awareness of the ethical and political stakes necessary for writing about violence.

SEM 104 MW 07:30–08:45 p.m. Sean Cosgrove 17770 Tamara Loos

 

HISTORY 1200

Writing History: What is Sparta?

“This is Sparta!” The movie quote that took on a life of its own in pop culture helped introduce a new generation to the image of the famous warriors of Ancient Greece. This course will look at the complicated question hidden behind that statement: what was Sparta? What is it today? From ancient times to the present, images of Sparta have been brought up in writing, comics, and film to portray new versions of an ideal society to be copied or avoided. War, politics, gender, tourism: all have a potential “Spartan” angle which can be explored in this course. Students will have an opportunity to consider ancient and modern depictions of Sparta, and work towards a research paper focusing any aspect of the image of Sparta.

SEM 105 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Craig Lyons 17771 Tamara Loos

 

HISTORY 1200

Writing History: Nationalism and Ethnic Politics in East Asia

Ethnic and nationalist conflicts in different forms are widespread in East Asia, ranging from secessionist movements by Uyghurs in Northwest China to disputes between Koreans and Japanese over interpretations of the history of World War II. This course explores the historical origins of these conflicts by scrutinizing the evolution of nationalism and ethnic politics in East Asia from the late nineteenth century, particularly focusing on the post-1945 era. This course includes six units: 1) a brief review of nationalism in modern East Asian history; 2) ethnic tensions in China’s borderlands; 3) formation of new national identities in various regions; 4) international disputes over historical interpretation; 5) territorial disputes and xenophobic sentiments, and 6) interrelations between nationalism and religion and ideology.

SEM 106 MW 07:30–08:45 p.m. Anran Wang 17772 Tamara Loos

 

HISTORY 1431

Mao, China, and the World

Mao Zedong’s famous portrait hangs over the entrance to the Forbidden City in Beijing, a fitting symbol of his dominating presence in the history of modern China. But who exactly was Mao and how has he been perceived by others? A courageous revolutionary seeking the liberation of the oppressed masses? A bloodthirsty tyrant bent on self-exaltation and personal power? A savvy politician promoting the modernization of an ancient land? In this course we will probe the figure of Mao through a variety of readings, some by Mao, but most by others, ranging from Mao’s physician to former Red Guards to Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. And we will add our own perceptions to them by writing about Mao, the man, and the myth.

SEM 101 TR 08:40–09:55 a.m. John Barwick 17757

 

JEWISH STUDIES 1987

Jews on Film: Visible and Invisible

Why were Jews virtually invisible in films produced during the Hollywood’s “golden age”? Is this a surprise, given the leading role played by American Jews in founding the studio system? Writing about the films studied in this course will help students situate and interpret the presence (and absence) of characters identifiable as Jews in Hollywood films released from the silent era through the present. We will view approximately six films in their entirety and study excerpts from others. Films to be studied in whole or part may include: The Immigrant, The Jazz Singer, The Great Dictator, Casablanca, The Apartment, Funny Girl, Annie Hall, Barton Fink, and A Serious Man. Students will write film analyses, review essays, reflective responses, and explorations of contextual material. Readings from film studies and popular journalism will situate these films within the historical, cultural, and industrial contexts in which they were produced.

SEM 101 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Elliot Shapiro 17744

 

LINGUISTICS 1100

Language, Thought, and Reality: Words and Pictures

This class explores the collaboration of language and image in creating meanings at multiple levels. We will discuss and write about popular culture—caricatures, comics, graphic novels, and advertising—along with high culture artifacts such as paintings and illuminated manuscripts, examining the interplay and analogies between understanding language and interpreting images. We will discuss phenomena that cut across words and pictures: both may represent reality. A sentence may be true or false—can the same be said of a picture? Both language and visual representation are governed by conventions, and would be impossible without them. Information may be foregrounded and backgrounded in both channels, and can be ambiguous, contradictory, nonsensical, or self-referential.

SEM 101 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Dorit Abusch 17745

 

MECHANICAL & AEROSPACE ENGINEERING 1120

Writing about Experiments

“If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong,” said theoretical physicist Richard Feynman. Experiment is at the heart of all science and writing about experiments has a style all its own. In this course students will do simple experiments such as those done by Galileo to demonstrate the laws of classical mechanics and write journal style articles about them. Other writing assignments will include a literature review and news style article about an experiment. Readings will focus on how to write in the scientific style and will provide examples of scientific writing. There are no science prerequisites beyond what you probably learned in high school and all majors are welcome.

SEM 101 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Daniel Houck 17749 Elliot Shapiro

 

MEDIEVAL STUDIES 1101

Aspects of Medieval Culture: Heroes and Heroines of the Medieval World

This course explores how heroic narratives reflect ideas about gender, nation, religion, and belonging and how those ideas developed over time. We will focus on a broad selection of historical sources from Africa, Asia, and Europe related to the period of the “Middle Ages,” 500–1500 C.E. We will examine conflicts and contests between men and women in Beowulf, accounts of the Trojan War, the travels of Alexander the Great, and legends of Solomon and the Queen of Sheba. We will also explore historical and legendary accounts of “warrior women” such as stories of the Amazons, Judith, Mulan, and Joan of Arc. A series of formal essays and assignments will familiarize students with the fundamentals of writing and research.

SEM 101 MWF 10:10–11:00 a.m. Patrick Naeve 17758 David Powers

 

MEDIEVAL STUDIES 1101

Aspects of Medieval Culture: Gods and Kings in the Middle Ages and Beyond

Throughout the Middle Ages, Church and State frequently cooperated and just as frequently were at odds. When did Church and State come to be seen as separate powers? How do medieval authors justify the Church over the State, and vice versa? To what extent do medieval ideas of Church and State still apply today? In this course we will examine texts that argue for and against Church power and State power, including the Book of Kings from the Old Testament and Machiavelli’s The Prince, letters from Popes and Kings, and modern theories of sovereignty. Students will be expected to write one 8-10 page research paper on a topic of their choice, with several shorter response assignments to encourage critical thinking and discussion.

SEM 102 MWF 11:15–12:05 p.m. Paul Vinhage 17759 Oren Falk

 

MEDIEVAL STUDIES 1101

Aspects of Medieval Culture: Young Idiots vs. Toxic Elders

“Kids these days,” “back in my day,” and “boring old men”—how far back do these complaints go? The current rhetoric of generational strife pits “Baby Boomers” against “Millennials,” spawning a supposedly unprecedented flurry of thinkpieces and commentary. We will examine the medieval predecessors of these attitudes by looking at English poetry, treatises, and chronicles from Beowulf to Chaucer. The course will track the changing stereotypes of the ages of life, the various medieval medical and religious approaches to aging, the social consequences of demographic upheavals, and the recurring narrative of youth against age. Writing assignments will focus on crafting persuasive, clear arguments. Students will acquire skills in mining texts for evidence, conducting historical research, anticipating counterarguments, expressing relevancy, and adapting writing for different audiences.

SEM 103 TR 08:40–09:55 a.m. Anna Waymack 17760 Masha Raskolnikov

 

MEDIEVAL STUDIES 1101

Aspects of Medieval Culture: Suspended from Heaven—The Rhetoric of Byzantine Architecture

The Byzantines described their architecture in a variety of contexts, from religious hymns to imperial flattery, often with a specific rhetorical goal in mind. How can descriptions of buildings add to the praise of a bishop or emperor? Can it provide an immersive religious experience for readers or listeners? This course will examine descriptions of architecture from the fourth through twelfth century, with an emphasis on the major achievement of Byzantine architecture, Hagia Sophia, the great cathedral of Constantinople. Students will write essays in which they closely examine descriptions of Byzantine buildings, while exploring the ways in which they themselves can describe architecture.

SEM 104 TR 11:40–12:55 p.m. Tyler Wolford 17761 Benjamin Anderson

 

MUSIC 1701

The Politics of Listening: Sound and Civic Life

How is power resisted, negotiated, and enforced through sound? How are differences in listening shaped by power, and what do those differences mean for our social and political life together? This course will ask these questions in contexts including jazz funerals parading through shattered New Orleans neighborhoods, “voice votes” determining key resolutions at political party conventions, torture pop breaking the will of prisoners in CIA black sites, and your favorite—or least favorite—music blasting on the sidewalk. Students will undertake listening exercises and writing assignments including music reviews, personal reflections, and a research paper in order to develop critical thinking skills essential both to success in higher education and meaningful participation as a listening, sounding citizen.

SEM 101 TR 11:40–12:55 p.m. Daniel Hawkins 17763 Steven Pond

 

NEAR EASTERN STUDIES 1932

Conflict, Coexistence and Cohesion: Jews, Christians and Muslims in the Medieval Mediterranean

Many modern ideas about violent conflict and peaceful coexistence have been applied to the history of interactions among members of Jewish, Christian, and Muslim communities. In this class we will read a variety of primary sources from the medieval period with the goal of understanding encounters (both real and imagined) between these three communities. We will discuss different types of medieval encounters, such as travel and the Crusades, focusing throughout on how medieval authors understood their interactions with members of other faith communities. What legal and social norms governed these interactions? When and why did violence between these communities occur? Student essays will examine primary texts and use them to analyze different types of interfaith encounters and ultimately to evaluate modern theories about these premodern interactions.

SEM 101 TR 08:40–09:55 a.m. Kiley Foster 17765 Lauren Monroe

 

NEAR EASTERN STUDIES 1970

On Islands: Poetics of the Insular in World Literature

In literary imagination, islands teem with aesthetic and functional possibilities. They can be idealized as pure, innocent Edens, but also as objects of desire passively awaiting exploitation. They can provoke visions of "savagery" and cultural judgment, even violent fantasies of otherness. We will read and write about islands in world literature, asking questions about identity and difference, existence, certitude, and knowledge, hope and despair. Texts will include the Sinbad Voyages, medieval picaresque narratives, Gulliver's Travels, and modern works of utopian, dystopian, and science fiction. Through close readings of literary texts, students will write essays that vary in goal and complexity. Written assignments include but are not limited to: critical and comparative literary analysis, in addition to research-based argumentative essays.

SEM 101 MWF 01:25–02:15 p.m. Rama Alhabian 17766 Debra Starr

 

PHILOSOPHY 1110

Philosophy in Practice: Ethics, Information, and Technology

According to the Pew Center for Research, nearly two-thirds of adult Americans use Facebook. Tech companies now play an influential role in shaping many aspects of our lives. Who is making the decisions about the moral consequences of technology we use? This course will explore the philosophical dimensions of advancements in technology, paying close attention to how decisions about technology constrain and shape our moral and political lives. We will consider questions like: do engineers have responsibility to consider the ethical dimensions of the technology they're developing? Whom should we trust as sources of knowledge online? Should Facebook and other companies be able to shape how their users think of privacy? How does inequality across race and gender appear in online spaces? Writing assignments will explain, analyze, and contribute to arguments about the ethics of technology.

SEM 101 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Alicia Patterson 17805 Rachana Kamtekar

 

PHILOSOPHY 1110

Philosophy in Practice: Moral and Social Philosophy through Argument Mapping

Is abortion morally permissible? Is assisted suicide? Why is it bad to die? Is the right to bear arms justified? What is gender and race? What obligations do we have to those who are worse off than we? What obligations do we have to animals? These ethical and social questions are of particular relevance today. Philosophers approach these questions with proposals supported by logical arguments. A philosophical argument is a structured presentation of evidence, reasons, or considerations with the purpose of persuading an audience. You will learn to strip philosophers’ arguments down to their essentials using argument mapping software. Argument maps are tools that we use to display an argument’s structure visually and plainly. Class will take place in a computer lab.

SEM 102 MWF 10:10–11:00 a.m. Avi Appel 17806 Rachana Kamtekar

 

PHILOSOPHY 1110

Philosophy in Practice: Philosophy of Science

You may have wondered, why do we call some theories “scientific,” but not others? Do we really know the sun will come up tomorrow? Where do babies come from? To answer these questions, we will tackle classic puzzles and new problems in the philosophy of science. Topics will include the problem of induction, how to distinguish science from pseudoscience, and bias in scientific practice. Readings will include works by authors like Pierre Duhem, Karl Popper, Thomas Kuhn, Louise Antony, and Helen Longino, among others. Students will complete writing assignments that build skills like accuracy, clarity, and coherence. Through writing students will learn to rigorously present philosophical debates over scientific orthodoxy and practice, and situate their own views within these debates.

SEM 103 TR 08:40–09:55 a.m. August Faller 17807 Rachana Kamtekar

 

PHILOSOPHY 1110

Philosophy in Practice: Feminism, Gender, and Education

This course will explore many different issues involving gender in the lives of university students and recent graduates. Issues will be examined through the lens of critical feminist theory. What are the unique problems that women experience while in college? What does masculinity mean in the twenty-first century? In what ways is gender relevant in the classroom? Is there a “boys crisis” in public education? We will consider the various ways that conceptions of gender limit and frustrate social interactions and the sense of self. Subject matter will include Title IX, social constructionism, fraternities and sororities, sexual relations, sexual assault, masculinity, men’s rights, and others. Writing assignments will include thoughtful responses to challenging reading, argumentative papers on policy related to gender, expository writing explaining historical social change, and a comprehensive final paper that will demonstrate synthetic understanding of course material.

SEM 104 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Daniel Manne 17808

 

PHILOSOPHY 1111

Philosophical Problems: Luck and Morality

Do people deserve blame or praise if their conduct or character isn’t under their control? Should severity of punishments depend on outcomes decided by chance? Would it be fair for God to pass judgment on us for actions that were predestined? Much of who we are and what we do is determined by fate or fortune but we’d also like to think that people have control over their moral lives. This course deals with the unique problems that arise when luck meets morality. The topic will be explored through readings in Western philosophy, both classic and contemporary. Through reading responses and a series of essays, students will hone the skills of expressing complex ideas clearly and concisely while constructing plausible and persuasive arguments.

SEM 101 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Matthew Paskell 17830 Rachana Kamtekar

 

PHILOSOPHY 1112

Philosophical Conversations: God and Evil

Philosophy tackles the Big Questions, and one of the biggest is the problem of evil. Does the existence of horrendous evils show that there is no benevolent God? After reading classic discussions in Dostoevsky, Hume, and Leibniz, we'll look at contemporary responses from Mackie, Plantinga, McCord-Adams, and responses from Buddhist and Islamic traditions. By hearing from many sides of the debate we can appreciate the strength of the arguments. Along the way you will learn how to analyze and develop arguments, argue multiple sides of a difficult question, and write careful prose that reasons precisely. As a bonus, you get an excellent introduction to analytic philosophy applied to some of the deepest questions of ethics, free will, God, and the meaning of life.

SEM 101 MW 08:40–09:55 a.m. Vivek Mathew 17839 Rachana Kamtekar

 

PHILOSOPHY 1112

Philosophical Conversations: Living in a Material World—Ancient Epicurean Philosophy

Lucretius’ On the Nature of Things argues the world is a material system of atoms and void that came about by chance. He claims it’s only when we understand that death is inevitable, the world evolved by natural selection, and the gods have no interest in us, that we can live pleasant lives free of fear and uncertainty. In setting out these ideas, Lucretius aimed to translate the core of Epicurean philosophy into a form that his contemporaries (sophisticated Romans of 55 BCE) could appreciate and put into practice. We will follow Lucretius’ intense focus on methods of argument and analysis. We will learn to interpret informal arguments and how to reconstruct theories sketched in the text and to set them out with clarity and precision.

SEM 102 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Charles Brittain 17840

 

PHILOSOPHY 1112

Philosophical Conversations: The Limits of Evil—True Crime and Philosophy

With the podcast “My Favorite Murder” boasting of nineteen million downloads a month, and “Serial” ten million downloads in seven weeks, true crime is an immensely popular genre. Beyond the human penchant for gore, these stories are captivating because they raise issues of deep human and ethical significance: What is evil? How do we become who we are? If the most violent offenders suffer from brain anomalies outside their control or there is no free will, can we still hold people responsible for their crimes? What is the function of blame and punishment? We will strive not to fall into sensationalism. However, be advised that we will consider real cases. You will hone your writing and argumentative skills through essays and activities like mock trials.

SEM 103 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Quitterie Gounot 17841 Rachana Kamtekar

 

PERFORMING & MEDIA ARTS 1144

Propaganda, Protests, and Performance

In our current political climate where is the line drawn between politics and performance? How has performance historically been used to advance political propaganda? In what ways does performance facilitate real social change? From the suffragettes, to the oppression, immigrant worker’s rights, to our current culture of political divisiveness theater is used to play on people’s prejudices, emotions, and sense of justice. Using historical texts, articles, plays, and online news journals, students will explore a broad range of political theater while examining how performance shapes American culture and identities. The writing in this course is a mix of short essays, creative writing, and a research paper. Each assignment builds off the next, offering students lessons in summary, analyses, research, and finding their own voice.

SEM 101 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Jayme Kilburn 17843 David Feldshuh

 

PERFORMING & MEDIA ARTS 1145

Socks, Pads, and Other Stuff(ing): Drag Performance

”We're all born naked and the rest is drag“—RuPaul. This course explores drag as a mode of queer cultural performance. Through a wide range of readings and viewings that introduce a diverse array of drag traditions and aesthetics, we will search for an understanding, even a simple definition, of drag. In so doing we will explore drag performance as a queer cultural practice, a means of community formation, a potential disruption of gender norms and binaries, and as a radical act of liberation. By engaging in class discussion, practicing a variety of analytic writing styles, and establishing an essay drafting and revising process, students will develop and hone their college writing skills all while investigating drag performance and being absolutely fabulous.

SEM 101 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Samual Blake 17844 David Feldshuh

 

PERFORMING & MEDIA ARTS 1147

Supercrips and Megavillains: Disability on Stage and Screen

Does a wheelchair user want to walk? Does a Deaf person want to hear? Does a neuroatypical person want to be . . . typical? Should we assume all people who claim disability want the same things? In this seminar we will explore the ways people with impairments are represented and how they, themselves, can subvert exploitation and stigmatization. We examine the public imagination of disability as depicted on film and TV, from black and white horror (Freaks) to modern-day sitcoms (Speechless). We will also explore contemporary literature and drama to further contemplate why these representations matter. The course highlights in-class discussion, peer editing, and enhancing each student’s ability to produce coherent, concise, persuasive prose in the form of critical arguments.

SEM 101 TR 11:40–12:55 p.m. Joshua Cole 17846 David Feldshuh

 

PERFORMING & MEDIA ARTS 1148

Migration Performances: Concepts and Encounters

Migration is one of the defining challenges of our time. It is a human reality, yet it remains a controversial issue in society today. Why do people migrate? What are the implications of migration for migrants and host communities? Does migration always involve crossing national borders? Could performance serve as a tool for empowerment in the hands of migrants and displaced persons? How do migrants or displaced persons perform their reality of migration? This seminar will respond to these questions and many more through an engagement of academic and creative texts that cut across the fields of migration studies and performing arts. This course allows for a wide range of assignments designed to cultivate and deepen the writing, critical, and creative skills of students.

SEM 101 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Elaigwu Ameh 17762 David Feldshuh

 

PERFORMING & MEDIA ARTS 1149

Queer Women in Stand-Up Comedy

With the tremendous success of Hannah Gadsby’s 2018 Stand-up special Nanette (Netflix), connections among gender, sexuality, feminism, and stand-up comedy (once again) came to the fore of public discourse. In this class we will interrogate these connections by looking at the work of queer women comedians who pioneered and shaped stand-up comedy over the second half of the twentieth century—such as Jackie “Moms” Mabley, Lily Tomlin, Margaret Cho, Ellen DeGeneres, or Janine Garofalo—as well as performers who have been shaking up the world of stand-up comedy in recent years, including Tig Notaro, Wanda Sykes, Cameron Esposito, Rhea Butcher, and Gadsby. Students will practice and develop their critical skills via weekly short responses, longer essays, and (optional) creative assignments.

SEM 101 TR 11:40–12:55 p.m. Kriszta Pozsonyi 17764 David Feldshuh

 

POLISH 1301

East European Film

Eastern Europe has contributed unique films to the global cinema. In this class students will watch, discuss, and write about a variety of movies: Oscar winners and lesser-known films, thrillers and comedies. Our films come from Poland, Russia, Turkey, Kazakhstan etc. In addition to learning film terminology, students will have the opportunity to become acquainted with the cultures, history, and geography of Eastern Europe. They will write film reviews, do research on the topic of their choice, and write a research assignment. All class films are available for streaming through Blackboard for students to watch them in their free time.

SEM 101 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Ewa Bachminska 17779

 

PSYCHOLOGY 1120

Social and Personality: Psychological Perspectives on the Nature of Morality

What is morality? This question is different from asking which actions are right or wrong. Instead, it asks the more fundamental question of what morality itself is. This question has traditionally been addressed by philosophers, but psychologists have begun to explore morality from a scientific perspective. This course will integrate both approaches, but will emphasize contemporary psychological research on questions such as: how do people distinguish moral from nonmoral issues? How do culture and evolution shape moral belief? Are any moral beliefs the same across all cultures? Do most people believe morality is objectively true or subjectively true? Writing assignments will emphasize concisely articulating and exploring the implications of psychological findings, proposing new research, and conveying scientific findings to the public.

SEM 101 TR 11:40–12:55 p.m. Lance Bush 17786 Elliot Shapiro

 

PSYCHOLOGY 1140

Perception Cognition Development: Consciousness and the Brain

What happens in your brain when you consciously perceive an object or a sound? Why does consciousness cease during dreamless sleep and under general anesthesia? To what extent can we process information without awareness? After decades of research, answers to these existential questions are finally starting to emerge. In this course you will read about fascinating neurological conditions, experience optical illusions, explore the human brain, and learn how cognitive scientists conduct research and communicate their findings. Writing assignments will follow a natural progression from short commentaries to a research proposal on a topic of your choosing. You will also review the work of your peers.

SEM 101 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Roy Moyal 17787 Elliot Shapiro

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1102

The Craft of Storytelling: Crónica, City, Cinema

If cities are series of overlapping material and social networks, how can we narrate them? Making stops in New York, Mexico City, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago, and Buenos Aires, we will consider two forms that have portrayed urban spaces across the Americas: the crónica, or written chronicle, and cinema. Our discussions of whether stories construct cities will incorporate readings by figures ranging from José Martí to Clarice Lispector and from Henri Lefebvre to Jane Jacobs; films such as Amores perros, City of God, and A Fantastic Woman will accompany our reflections on how cities structure stories. In assignments requiring multiple stages of revision—including reviews, ethnographies, and essays comparing cartographies appearing in print or on-screen—students will practice producing cogent arguments and polishing their prose.

SEM 101 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Sam Carter 17791 Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1102

The Craft of Storytelling: Race, Gender, and Postcolonial Writing

This seminar will focus on autobiographical and life writing stories by contemporary women writers from different areas of the Francophone world, from the French Caribbean to North and West Africa. More specifically, we will look at the innovative ways in which female authors have used literary and cultural representations as well as first-person narratives in order to raise questions of history, resistance, and agency in postcolonial contexts. By discussing intersections of race, class, gender, and power, we will address issues of diasporic experience, identity formation, and creativity. We will read a variety of translated texts of different genres, such as short story, fiction, auto biography, poetry, and film, along with theoretical texts. Students will develop their writing skills as they engage, analyze, and think critically about these works.

SEM 102 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Elise Finielz 17792 Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1102

The Craft of Storytelling: Writing the Self in French Literature

How do we form our conceptions of self and how might storytelling provide insights into the ways in which we construct our identities? What does it mean for the self to “come into being” in a text? Through an investigation of primarily French autobiographical works, we will discuss questions of authenticity and desire, the fictionalized representation of “selves,” and the role of memory in our imaginary self-representations. We will explore notions of the self in relation to reverie, nature, politics, gender, and sexuality. Readings include translated excerpts from authors such as Montaigne and Rousseau, along with critical and philosophical texts, and film. Writing assignments will encourage students to question, analyze, and think critically about these works.

SEM 103 TR 11:40–12:55 p.m. Adam Schoene 17793 Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1102

The Craft of Storytelling: Decameron

All of us tell stories for a variety of reasons—to entertain, to console, to teach, to persuade—to discover and explore both our inner lives and the world we inhabit. Stories are one of the prime ways in which we make sense of a world that is not always propitious. They serve as instruments by which we seek to shape our future. In this seminar we shall consider how the craft of storytelling helps us face the task of living: the love and the happiness and the community we seek, the virtues we espouse, our talents and our vulnerabilities. Our principal reading (in English translation) will be a masterpiece of European literature, Giovanni Boccaccio’s Decameron (ca. 1349–51), which showcases one hundred stories told by ten young Florentines fleeing the Black Death of 1348. Students will write both analytic and personal essays.

SEM 104 MWF 12:20–01:10 p.m. Giulia Andreoni 18163 Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1108

Cultural Identities: Women Writing the Mediterranean

In this course we will examine how women writers from the Mediterranean bring out their identity and their relationship to their language(s) and origins, and how they deal with the present and the past. Several of the works we will read explore the theme of women amidst war and civil conflict, and ask how to articulate one's self against the background of the historical events and social movements that are shaping the Mediterranean in the 20th and 21st centuries. Women writers and film directors studied in the seminar come from North Africa, France, Italy, Spain, Greece, Croatia, Lebanon, and Israel. We will also read a work by one of the founding theorists of Mediterranean Studies, Predrag Matvejevi?. The course includes several film screenings and a visit and a video-conference meeting with one of the writers or film-makers studied in the course.

SEM 101 MW 02:55–04:10 p.m. Kora von Wittelsbach 17794

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1108

Cultural Identities: Feminism

How does feminism translate across different socio-cultural contexts? This course presents a diverse survey of feminist expressions from the Spanish-speaking world: Spain, Latin America, and the United States. Over the course of the semester, we will be attentive to how feminism responds to and redefines concepts as rights, gender, sexuality, class, race, family, religion, language, and nationality. Some of the feminists we will read include Emilia Pardo Bazán, Rosario Castellanos, and Cherrie Moraga. Writing assignments will include short reflections, a blog entry, a manifesto, an opinion piece, and a research paper.

SEM 102 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Julia Chang 17795

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1108

Cultural Identities: Found in Translation

Poetry, it’s said, is what’s lost in translation. This course, however, explores what we find in translation—from language to culture, from others to ourselves. We will ask, to what—if anything—are translations faithful? Can translations be original creations? Is anything untranslatable? We will investigate these questions through readings from classic storytellers like Borges and Cervantes, as well as experimental poets like Anne Carson. We will study where language and politics meet through the case of translators who work with Latin American immigrants in the United States. We will also experiment with our own translation—between different languages, within a single language, or across different media, like music and the visual arts. No foreign language knowledge is required for this course.

SEM 103 TR 11:40–12:55 p.m. Janet Hendrickson 17796 Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1108

Cultural Identities: France Unveiled

How was political ideology of the French Revolution used to ban headscarves from French public schools and “burkinis” from French beaches? How do we answer for the growing power of extreme nationalist and nativist ideologies in Europe? And why are women and minorities often the focal point in debates on national identity? In this class we will explore the global implications of these questions. We will consider how gender, race, and citizenship have been interrogated by French novelists, filmmakers, and hip-hop artists, engaging with foundational literature alongside audiovisual content. Through creative pieces, critical analyses, and close reading students will respond to a variety of media, improving their ability to think and write across different disciplines.

SEM 104 TR 10:10–11:25 a.m. Hannah Hughes 17797 Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1109

Image and Imagination: Life of the Actor/The Actor of Life

In the age of a proliferation of images, the actor remains one of the most fascinating and alluring figures of media and the actor/actress is often a glamorous star. But what does it really mean to be an actor or an actress? What are the boundaries between life and fiction? Is acting confined to theatre and cinema, or an experience that everybody can have? In this course we will look into global cinema and performing arts, as well as literature, sociology, and theories of acting, to explore the life of the actor/actress, but also the performing of everyday life. Through collective in-class and online discussions, creative and analytical writing, students will gain interdisciplinary skills that will help them understand the language of images and gestures.

SEM 102 TR 01:25–02:40 p.m. Lia Turtas 17821 Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1113

Thinking and Thought: Dante’s Examined Life

Why do we study? What is the point of learning? Do we aspire to more than career success? A philosopher once said that “the unexamined life is not worth living.” Is this true? In this course we’ll answer this question while venturing into Dante Alighieri’s Inferno, a work that not only describes the state of souls after death, but also urges us to consider how we, in this life, envision ourselves and our communities. Reading the poem in English translation, we shall use it as a frame for further interrogation. Students will write both analytic and personal essays.

SEM 101 MWF 10:10–11:00 a.m. Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi 17822

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1113

Thinking and Thought: Elements of Life

The Periodic Table (1975), written by the Italian chemist and Holocaust survivor Primo Levi (1919-87), has been called “the best science book ever written.” In twenty-one chapters, each of which bears the name of an element, Levi reflects on his life, experiences, and education before, during, and after the Second World War. In doing so he poses questions that are important to us today: Where does education happen? Do we become educated by reading books or through experience? What is education good for? What’s the relation between our lives as individuals and our lives as members of a community? Students will write creative pieces, personal reflections, and critical analyses applicable to multiple academic disciplines.

SEM 102 MWF 11:15–12:05 p.m. Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi 17823

SEM 103   TR 11:40–12:55 p.m.        Amanda Recupero          17824 irene Eibenstein-Alvisi

 

ROMANCE STUDIES 1113

Thinking and Thought: Montaigne, Descartes, and the Human Animal

Do animals have language? How can we know? Although Descarte’s philosophy has shaped how we think about language and what it means to be human for centuries, we are now questioning the strong divide between human and animal language and consciousness, especially with recent research in ape language. Descartes’s famous “I think, therefore I am,” can be juxtaposed with Montaigne’s earlier “What do I know”? In this class we will focus on the philosophical implications of positing differences between human and animal reason through the lens of these foundational French philosophers and contemporary studies in ALR. Through close reading, informal imitation, and comparative studies, students will work towards a final research paper that encourages an interdisciplinary approach to questions raised during the seminar.

SEM 104 MWF 01:25–02:15 p.m. Penelope Rosenstock-Murav 17825 Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi

 

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY STUDIES 1123

Technology and Society: Technology, Markets, and Materiality

How does technology shape markets and how do market logics shape technology in turn? This course is about reading and writing about emerging technologies through the lens of markets. What are the material conditions for the emergence of new technologies? What market pressures do designers face? Why do tech-entrepreneurs develop these specific technologies and what is their expected payoff? Each week we identify and read about novel technologies, for example: Amazon robots, Levi’s lasers, 3-D printed kidneys, and Google Pixel Buds. Readings at the intersection of science and technology studies and economic sociology by Trevor Pinch, Richard Swedberg, and Michel Callon inform critical thinking. Students develop writing skills through assignments such as Op/Eds, case evaluations, policy statements, book reviews, and a final paper with proposal.

SEM 101   MW 02:55–04:10 p.m.   Barkha Kagliwal   18029   Jessica Sands

 

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY STUDIES 1126

Science and Society: Food-Flix and Chill

If the films produced over the last 15 years serve as any indication, food resonates. With titles ranging from Supersize Me (2003) to Food Evolution (2016), with the likes of Cowspiracy (2014) and a few thought-provoking Chipotle commercials sprinkled in-between, food topics have no dearth of cinematic appeal. This seminar will teach you to write clearly about food issues, paying particular attention to the parallels between the chosen films and contemporary food-related social movements. In addition to critical analysis of films through a “food studies” lens, we will sample readings from a variety of related genres, from science writing to blogs and media criticism. Writing assignments will span these methods, culminating in the submission of a collaboratively-researched proposal for a class film script.

SEM 101 MW 08:40–09:55 a.m. Rebecca Harrison 17826 Jessica Sands

 

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY STUDIES 1126

Science and Society: Writers of the Near Future Inc., A Training Module

The basic premise of this course is the following scenario: In the not-so-distant future, a science fictional enterprise called Near Future Inc. requires its new employees to take a course—this course!—on how important scientists and technologists were sophisticated writers also. Students in the course will role-play being the trainees of Near Future Inc., and they will read and discuss the correspondence, press releases, essays, articles, lectures, autobiographical accounts and futuristic manifestos written by influential scientists since the Industrial Revolution. Through written work, students will improve their communicative, argumentative and creative writing skills in relation to science and technology. Students who are intrigued by the histories and theories of life sciences, cybernetics, space sciences, and military technologies are encouraged to take this course.

SEM 102 TR 02:55–04:10 p.m. Mehmet Ekinci 18167 Jessica Sands

 

WRITING 1380

Elements of Academic Writing: Food for Thought

How does the food on your table tell a story about you, your family, your community, your nation? How do we make food choices, and how are these choices complicated by the cultural, socio-economic, and political forces that both create and combat widespread international hunger and food insecurity? The Writing 1380 classroom is a dynamic workspace where students assemble the scholarly tools necessary to explore these complex, interdisciplinary questions. Because Writing 1380 is designed as a workshop, students develop the analytic and argumentative skills fundamental to interdisciplinary reading, research, and writing by collaborating with peers to pose questions, examine ideas, and share drafts. With smaller class sizes, two 50-minute class sessions and weekly student/teacher conferences, Writing 1380 is an alternative route FWS that provides an individualized setting for students to learn flexible and sustainable strategies for studying the essential elements of academic writing and for producing clear, precise academic prose that can address a variety of audiences and meet diverse rhetorical aims. “S/U" grades only.

SEM 101 MW 10:10–11:00 a.m. Tracy Hamler Carrick 17831

•WRIT 1380 provides a more intensive and individualized learning environment that is particularly appropriate for students who have not had much formal high school writing instruction; are unfamiliar with academic or research-based writing, or feel a general lack of confidence about academic writing. • WRIT 1380 can only be taken with the S/U grading option. • WRIT 1380 fulfills the FWS requirement in all colleges except the School of Industrial and Labor Relations and is NOT recommended for pre-medical, pre-dental, or pre-veterinary students.

 

WRITING 1380

Elements of Academic Writing: Environmental Problems and Solutions

Human activities have ever-more serious impacts on our local regions and the planet. How can we think and write about improving public understanding of climate change, water scarcity, environmental health and agriculture and wildlife sustainability? The Writing 1380 classroom is a dynamic workspace where students assemble the scholarly tools necessary to explore these complex, interdisciplinary questions. By collaborating with peers to pose questions, examine ideas, and share drafts, students develop the analytic and argumentative skills fundamental to interdisciplinary reading, research, and writing. With smaller class sizes, two 50-minute class sessions, and weekly student/teacher conferences, Writing 1380 is an alternative route FWS that provides a workshop setting for students to learn flexible and sustainable strategies for studying the essential elements of academic writing and for producing clear, precise academic prose that can address a variety of audiences and meet diverse rhetorical aims. “S/U" grades only. *This course is particularly appropriate for multilingual writers.

SEM 102 MW 11:15–12:05 p.m. Jessica Sands 17832

This course is particularly appropriate for multilingual writers. •WRIT 1380 provides a more intensive and individualized learning environment that is particularly appropriate for students who have not had much formal high school writing instruction; are unfamiliar with academic or research-based writing, or feel a general lack of confidence about academic writing. • WRIT 1380 can only be taken with the S/U grading option. • WRIT 1380 fulfills the FWS requirement in all colleges except the School of Industrial and Labor Relations and is NOT recommended for pre-medical, pre-dental, or pre-veterinary students.

 

WRITING 1380

Elements of Academic Writing: Bridging Differences

In a world increasingly divided long lines of identity, language, politics, and religion, how do we enact change? How do we talk across our differences when we cannot even agree on what count as facts? In this studio-style writing course, we’ll read broadly about a variety of divisive topics and potential solutions related to

the course theme of “Bridging Differences.” The Writing 1380 classroom is a dynamic workspace where students assemble the scholarly tools necessary to explore these complex, interdisciplinary questions. By collaborating with peers to pose questions, examine ideas, and share drafts, students develop the analytic and argumentative skills fundamental to interdisciplinary reading, research, and writing. With smaller class sizes, two 50-minute class sessions and weekly student/teacher conferences, Writing 1380 provides an workshop setting for students to learn flexible and sustainable strategies for studying the essential elements of academic writing and for producing clear, precise academic prose that can address a variety of audiences and meet diverse rhetorical aims. “S/U" grades only.

SEM 103 MW 12:20–01:10 p.m. Kate Navickas 17833

•WRIT 1380 provides a more intensive and individualized learning environment that is particularly appropriate for students who have not had much formal high school writing instruction; are unfamiliar with academic or research-based writing, or feel a general lack of confidence about academic writing. • WRIT 1380 can only be taken with the S/U grading option. • WRIT 1380 fulfills the FWS requirement in all colleges except the School of Industrial and Labor Relations and is NOT recommended for pre-medical, pre-dental, or pre-veterinary students.

 

WRITING 1380

Elements of Academic Writing: Metaphor in Art, Science, and Culture

Metaphor is the essence of human creativity—a form of thought, desire and the language of the unconscious mind. How does metaphor operate in literature, pop culture, politics, and the thought of theoretical scientists such as Einstein and Richard Feynman? Can we improve our capacity to think metaphorically? The Writing 1380 classroom is a dynamic workspace where students assemble the scholarly tools necessary to explore these complex, interdisciplinary questions. Because Writing 1380 is designed as a workshop, students develop the analytic and argumentative skills fundamental to interdisciplinary reading, research, and writing by collaborating with peers to pose questions, examine ideas, and share drafts. With smaller class sizes, two 50-minute class sessions and weekly student/teacher conferences, Writing 1380 is an alternative route FWS that provides an individualized setting for students to learn flexible and sustainable strategies for studying the essential elements of academic writing and for producing clear, precise academic prose that can address a variety of audiences and meet diverse rhetorical aims. “S/U" grades only.

SEM 104 TR 10:10–11:00 a.m. Brad Zukovic 17834

•WRIT 1380 provides a more intensive and individualized learning environment that is particularly appropriate for students who have not had much formal high school writing instruction; are unfamiliar with academic or research-based writing, or feel a general lack of confidence about academic writing. • WRIT 1380 can only be taken with the S/U grading option. • WRIT 1380 fulfills the FWS requirement in all colleges except the School of Industrial and Labor Relations and is NOT recommended for pre-medical, pre-dental, or pre-veterinary students.

 

WRITING 1380

Elements of Academic Writing: Cinema and Power

As the most popular and accessible of art forms, cinema maintains a close relationship with the cultural, social, and political tensions of its time. While reaching masses of spectators, films become formidable means to propagate or defy systems of power. Through a cluster of themes (i.e., gender, class, race) we will think about cinema as a tool of persuasion or, conversely, as an awakening experience that inspires the audience to fight back against injustice and subjugation. The Writing 1380 classroom is a dynamic workspace where students assemble the scholarly tools necessary to explore these complex, interdisciplinary questions. Because Writing 1380 is designed as a workshop, students develop the analytic and argumentative skills fundamental to interdisciplinary reading, research, and writing by collaborating with peers to pose questions, examine ideas, and share drafts. With smaller class sizes, two 50-minute class sessions and weekly student/teacher conferences, Writing 1380 is an alternative route FWS that provides an individualized setting for students to learn flexible and sustainable strategies for studying the essential elements of academic writing and for producing clear, precise academic prose that can address a variety of audiences and meet diverse rhetorical aims. “S/U" grades only.

SEM 105 TR 11:15–12:05 p.m. Valeria Dani 17835

•WRIT 1380 provides a more intensive and individualized learning environment that is particularly appropriate for students who have not had much formal high school writing instruction; are unfamiliar with academic or research-based writing, or feel a general lack of confidence about academic writing. • WRIT 1380 can only be taken with the S/U grading option. • WRIT 1380 fulfills the FWS requirement in all colleges except the School of Industrial and Labor Relations and is NOT recommended for pre-medical, pre-dental, or pre-veterinary students.

 

WRITING 1380

Elements of Academic Writing: Writing Back to the News

Students will ensconce themselves in debates raging within the contemporary news media—such as politics, conflicts within higher education, gender equality, international crises, American popular culture—and will write about contemporary controversies to different audiences in a variety of mediums, such as argumentative essays, investigative pieces, and blog posts. The Writing 1380 classroom is a dynamic workspace where students assemble the scholarly tools necessary to explore complex, interdisciplinary questions. Because Writing 1380 is designed as a workshop, students develop the analytic and argumentative skills fundamental to interdisciplinary reading, research, and writing by collaborating with peers to pose questions, examine ideas, and share drafts. With smaller class sizes, two 50-minute class sessions and weekly student/teacher conferences, Writing 1380 is an alternative route FWS that provides an individualized setting for students to learn flexible and sustainable strategies for studying the essential elements of academic writing and for producing clear, precise academic prose that can address a variety of audiences and meet diverse rhetorical aims. “S/U" grades only.

SEM 106 TR 12:20–01:10 p.m. Kelly King-O’Brien 17836

•WRIT 1380 provides a more intensive and individualized learning environment that is particularly appropriate for students who have not had much formal high school writing instruction; are unfamiliar with academic or research-based writing, or feel a general lack of confidence about academic writing. • WRIT 1380 can only be taken with the S/U grading option. • WRIT 1380 fulfills the FWS requirement in all colleges except the School of Industrial and Labor Relations and is NOT recommended for pre-medical, pre-dental, or pre-veterinary students.

 

WRITING 1380

Elements of Academic Writing: Short Stories—Writing the Self

There is no exact definition of a short story: writers have wrestled with its brevity and, in doing so, they have often crafted some of the most luminous examples of storytelling. While reading modern and contemporary examples of this genre, we will learn how to conduct literary analysis and borrow some of the tools employed by fiction (rhythm, irony, style) to enhance our own writing. For multilingual writers and international students. The Writing 1380 classroom is a dynamic workspace where students assemble the scholarly tools necessary to explore complex, interdisciplinary questions. Because Writing 1380 is designed as a workshop, students develop the analytic and argumentative skills fundamental to interdisciplinary reading, research, and writing by collaborating with peers to pose questions, examine ideas, and share drafts. With smaller class sizes, two 50-minute class sessions and weekly student/teacher conferences, Writing 1380 is an alternative route FWS that provides an individualized setting for students to learn flexible and sustainable strategies for studying the essential elements of academic writing and for producing clear, precise academic prose that can address a variety of audiences and meet diverse rhetorical aims. “S/U" grades only.

SEM 107 TR 01:25–02:15 p.m. Valeria Dani 17837

•WRIT 1380 provides a more intensive and individualized learning environment that is particularly appropriate for students who have not had much formal high school writing instruction; are unfamiliar with academic or research-based writing, or feel a general lack of confidence about academic writing. • WRIT 1380 can only be taken with the S/U grading option. • WRIT 1380 fulfills the FWS requirement in all colleges except the School of Industrial and Labor Relations and is NOT