Classes

    Law and American Society

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    At a time when the rule of law is imperiled, our democracy and equal rights of every kind under assault by multiple forces, the importance of understanding our constitutional system of rights and laws as essential to the fabric of the nation cannot be overstated. The course will examine law as a vehicle of political conflict and a defining force in American society in four dimensions: 1.) as it establishes individual rights, liberties, and the limits of toleration; 2.) as it attempts to resolve differences among competing constituencies; 3.) as it sets out terms of punishment and social...
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    Dangerous Words: Feminist Debates on Speech, Harm, and Representation

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    What does it mean to strike a balance between the democratic foundations of freedom of speech and rights of marginalized peoples to resist the subordinating words of the privileged? This course examines key debates in feminism, speech, and representation. Topics include pornography, cancel culture, trigger warnings, hate speech, slurs, and cultural appropriation. We will begin by orienting ourselves to the legal frameworks in the North America and Europe context around freedom of speech before turning to intersectional feminist, philosophical and critical theories analyzing the impacts...

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    Human Rights, Law and Advocacy

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    Human rights practitioners confront numerous ethical, strategic, and legal dilemmas in their struggles for social justice. This freshman seminar explores the underlying legal framework in which human rights advocates operate, and then uses specific case studies to consider the various challenges they must grapple with in their work. The seminar is designed to encourage students to critically evaluate the human rights movement while offering an introduction to some of the essential...
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    Implicit Bias: Science and Society

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    We coined the term implicit bias in 1995 to capture the idea that bias, i.e., a deviation from accuracy or values can be implicit, i.e., operate without conscious awareness or conscious control. The idea emerged from basic research on implicit social cognition (ISC), an area of scientific psychology that explores the hidden aspects of mental representations of self, other, and social groups. Today, 25 years later, the term implicit bias has transcended academic psychology and permeated contemporary culture where it is used and contested every day. In this seminar, we will study the...

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    Qualitative Research Lab: Immigration, Citizenship, and Belonging

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    What does citizenship mean to the millions of people who immigrate to the United States? How do immigrants and their families experience the process, the complexities, and the challenges of immigration, integration, and naturalization? And how do undocumented and DACAmented immigrants describe the paradoxes of being a vital part of US society while being excluded from many formal categories of citizenship and belonging?
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    Queer Nation: LGBTQ Protest, Politics, and Policy in the United States

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    In this course, we will explore the political and politicized lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer peoples living in the United States, focusing on the period from World War II to the present. Centering both an intersectional analysis and historical critique of “progress,” we will focus our attention on the interrelationship between protest (how LGBTQ people have organized themselves and expressed their demands in the face of systemic oppression), politics (how...
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    Leadership from the Inside Out: The Capacity to Lead and Stay Alive-Self, Identity, and Freedom-with a Focus on Anti-Black Racism and Sexism

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    Leadership can be exercised from many locations in a society–from authority positions and from the streets–yet in general, to lead is to live with danger. It often requires putting yourself on the line, disturbing the status quo, and working with conflict. Those who lead take risks and sometimes get silenced, marginalized, or killed. To lead through the dangers of change demands diagnostic integrity and skill. Many Kennedy School courses strengthen diagnostic skills by analyzing...
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    Living in an Urban Planet

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    It has become a cliché to say that more than half of the world’s population now lives in cities. The speed and scale of urbanization over the past century has been stunning, and we tend to underestimate the extent to which built environments and natural landscapes have become entangled. As both lived and imagined spaces, cities will continue to shape life on our planet. In fact, if we consider the flow of resources (and refuse), energy systems, the circulation of people and...
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