Classes

    Advanced French II: Écrivons droit(s)/ Writing Right(s): Justice, Equity, Rights, and Writing

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    Through the lens of social justice issues in France and the Francophone world, this class will focus on writing as a means of civic engagement. You will interrogate topics such as colonialism, islamophobia, immigration, and sexism by studying a range of creative, analytical, and polemical texts, images, and film. This course builds on the communicative competence acquired in French 40, with a particular emphasis on developing your writing proficiency through creative and analytical writing projects such as description, portrait, film review, and polemical essays. This course will also...

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    Online Dating and the Transformation of Intimacy

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    Over the past twenty years, online dating has become the go-to way for people to seek intimacy. This has exacerbated problematic social forces such as sexism and racism. But many forms of attraction have also found expression as online dating has risen to prominence – with dozens of genders, sexualities, and relationship styles offered on OkCupid; platforms for threesomes, S&M enthusiasts, and gay men that like beards; and connections formed by many forms of mediation, from...
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    Women's voices in Brazilian culture(s)

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    In this advanced language and culture course, students will refine their Portuguese language skills as they learn how Brazilian women have overcome prejudice and gender bias and adopted a leading role in the Brazilian culture and society. Through a range of texts (e.g. paintings, songs, movies, short stories, novels, tv shows) students will master complex grammatical structures and build on the communicative competence acquired in previous levels, with a particular emphasis on...
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    Threads: Histories and Theories of Clothing and Fashion

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    This course focuses on fashion and clothing in Japan from the medieval period to the present day. It aims to build a knowledge base of historically contextualized case studies through readings, lectures, and discussions. In the process, it explores questions about clothing as a site around which societal debates occur, where personal and collective identities are shaped, and where foundational philosophical ideas come into focus. Theoretical readings will allow students to apply...
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    Stories of Gender and Justice

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    With gender inequities and biases pervasive within and across cultures worldwide, and the global pandemics of gender-based violence and structural violence further intensified by the Covid-19 pandemic, how have individuals, groups, communities, and nations globally fought for (and against) gender justice? How have struggles against gender injustice intersected and conflicted with struggles against racial, ethnic, environmental, health, LGBTQIA+ and other forms of injustice? Gender...
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    Gender and Sexuality in Korean Pop Culture

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    What can the songs of BTS and Blackpink, the TV-show “Squid Game,” and the films Parasite andKim Chi-yŏng: Born 1982 teach us about gender roles in contemporary Korea? What roles do writers, musicians, and filmmakers play in shaping our thinking about sex and gender? How do competing ideas about sex shape the current system of cinematic, television, and popular music genres? These questions will be explored through case studies of Korean popular media, while the course will...
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    Power to the People: Black Power, Radical Feminism, and Gay Liberation

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    An introduction to the radical American social change movements of the 1960s and 70s. We will examine the specific historical conditions that allowed each of these movements to develop, the interconnections and contradictions among them, and why their political power faded, only to reemerge in new manifestations today. Along with historical analysis, we will examine primary source materials, manifestos, autobiographies, and media coverage from the period, as well as relevant films, music, and fiction. The class will be a mixture of lecture and discussion. Midterm and final assignments...

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    How Sweet is it to be Loved By You: Black Love and the Emotional Politics of Respect

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    The word 'love' is almost never used in any portrayal or description of the African American community's daily life in contemporary media and in the social sciences. But love, as a human experience, is central to our understanding of what it means to be a vital member of a culture and society and thus respected, nurtured, etc. This seminar examines the love that difference makes. It is a comprehensive study of the representation of gender, love and sexuality in African American and...
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    Advanced French I: The Contemporary Francophone World Through Cinema

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    In this advanced French language and culture course, you will explore francophone culture(s) through contemporary films. The course is designed to strengthen language proficiency, explore different registers of language, and further refine your grammatical understanding while offering an introduction to film analysis. You will engage in interactive communicative activities exploring themes such as regional differences, Paris and the banlieue, immigration, post-colonialism, cinematic self-portraits, and gender through readings such as film reviews, interviews with directors, and script...

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    HIV in Global Perspective

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    As Covid 19 continues to dominate our historical moment, the pandemic has provoked culture wars over personal behavior, political fights over policy and funding, and sharp inequalities of care along national, economic, and racial divides. For the past few years, we have all felt hopeful optimism and then disappointed realism about the latest medical breakthrough, initial concern followed by compassion fatigue, and a widespread sense of helplessness in the face of an unrelenting virus. These dynamics at the intersection of culture, society, medicine, and public health also defined a...

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    Tattoo: Histories and Practices

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    Tattooing has been practiced in many different social and cultural settings, in many different time periods, to different ends. In the United States, tattooing was long associated with marginalized and stigmatized groups, but since the 1970s, has become increasingly popular and even mainstream. This seminar style class will explore distinct regional histories of tattoo, the development of tattooing in the US, and the different ways that contemporary tattoo practitioners situate themselves historically and negotiate boundaries of race, class and gender. We will also consider tattoo as an...

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    Asian America in Popular Culture

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    The release of Crazy Rich Asians in 2018 was a significant cultural moment for Asian America: the first major Hollywood picture with a predominantly Asian American cast in over twenty years, the film was an immediate box office success, and followed by a proliferation of mainstream Asian American productions, including The Farewell, Indian Matchmaking, and Minari. This recent growth of Asian American media is especially remarkable, given that Asian America has been relatively...
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    Poetry Workshop: Form and Content

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    In this workshop, we’ll look closely at the craft-based choices poets make, and track the effects they have upon what we as readers are made to think and feel. How can implementing similar strategies better prepare us to engage the questions making up our own poetic material? We’ll also talk about content. What can poetry reveal about the ways our interior selves are shaped by public realities like race, class, sexuality, injustice and more?
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    African Architecture

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    This course examines architecture in African in an array of contexts and historical periods. Emphasis will be given to the shaping of the built environment around core cultural, social, political and economic contexts. Questions of style, materials, design considerations, gender, class, religion, building genres, colonialism and globalization will be addressed. Students will gain a knowledge not only of key monuments and models of African architecture, but also of differential scholarly approaches to these striking traditions. 

     

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    Wit, Irony, Comedy

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    In life, as in literature, humor often takes us by surprise: it gives delight; it lightens our mood; it makes us laugh. The question is: why? Laughter, in many ways, is a mystery. If tragedy’s existence is all too easy to explain— suffering needs to be borne, and we yearn to find explanations for it—then it’s comedy that’s the enigma. Taking the comic seriously, this seminar provides a broad investigation into the psychological, sociological, philosophical, dramatic, and literary...
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    The Good, the Bad, and the Beautiful: The Ethics of Art

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    What, if anything, is the relationship between art and morality? Can art be immoral? Or is it a mistake to evaluate a work of art in such terms? Can the moral of a content of a work bear on its aesthetic value, that is, whether it is good art? What of the moral status of artists—does the (im)morality of an artist bear on the success of her work? Should art serve as an instrument of moral education? A force for liberation? A method of unifying people? How do the arts shape who and...
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    Tasting Place: Food and Culture in America

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    We often associate specific tastes and foods with particular places, memories, and experiences. What would it mean, then, to center taste in our study of place and culture? How can places be tasted, and tastes be placed? In this class, we explore the relationship between taste and place within American culture, discussing how elements of nation, region, and identity are created, absorbed, and imagined through foods and their represented forms. The word “taste” has multiple meanings...
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    Con Artist Nation: Scams, Schemes, and American Dreams

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    With the popularity of shows like Inventing Anna and The Dropout, 2022 might be called the year of the scammer. Yet contemporary con artists come from a long lineage of carnival barkers, snake oil salesmen, and self-proclaimed miracle workers. This class examines the conditions of American capitalism and political populism that gave way to a society of schemers and dupes. We will consider how exploitation and self-invention were ultimately bound up in issues of class, race, gender, and religion. How did swindlers create or subvert stereotypes in search of profits? Who were imagined as...

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