Classes

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

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021

    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 African Diasporan culture.... Read more about How Sweet is it to be Loved By You: Black Love and the Emotional Politics of Respect

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

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021

    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 African Diasporan culture.... Read more about How Sweet is it to be Loved by You: Black Love and the Emotional Politics of Respect

    Feminist Science Studies

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021

    This seminar is an introduction to the interdisciplinary field of feminist science studies. As the feminist movements of the 1970s began to change the American political landscape, academic feminists began inquiries into the marginalization of women in science – a debate philosopher Harding called “the woman question in science.” Feminist scientists began to examine sex, gender and race bias in their own disciplines. In consequence, they raised questions about androcentric – male-centered – epistemologies underlying Western science (alongside a growing critique of Eurocentrism).... Read more about Feminist Science Studies

    Ethnic Studies, Anthropology, and the Transpacific Ethnography of Asian America

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021

    Given the urgency of the contemporary political moment and heightened conversations around race and especially gendered racial violence, what might anthropology stand to gain from an overt engagement with ethnic studies? Furthermore, how might anthropology’s longstanding interest in local meaning, knowledge, and practices disrupt hegemonic or US-centric notions of the ethnic Other? By foregrounding scholarship that traverses ethnic studies, Asian American studies, and anthropology, this course is designed to highlight the ways that histories of minoritized groups overlap and are connected.... Read more about Ethnic Studies, Anthropology, and the Transpacific Ethnography of Asian America

    The Archaeology of Women and Gender in the Ancient World

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021

    Women represent half of humanity, but they have been greatly underrepresented in studies of past cultures and societies. This course provides an introduction to aspects of women’s lives in the cultures of ancient Mediterranean Greece and Rome. We will examine not only what women actually did and did not do in these societies, but also how they were perceived by their male contemporaries and what value to society they were believed to have. The course will focus on how women are reflected in the material and visual cultures, but it will incorporate historical and literary evidence as well. Through such a comparative and interdisciplinary approach, we will examine the complexities and ambiguities of women’s lives in the ancient Mediterranean and begin to understand the roots of modern conceptions and perceptions of women in the Western world today.

    ... Read more about The Archaeology of Women and Gender in the Ancient World

    Topics in Latinx Studies: Imagining Latinidad

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021

    This course is intended to provide hands-on practice toward doing research on Latinx issues, with an approach grounded in the understanding that terms ‘Hispanic’ and ‘Latinidad’ are not static concepts and, at the same time, not a homogeneous mix. We will examine culture, intellectual production, languages, economics, and political thought, as well as the dynamics of Latino/a/e people in the United States. Throughout the class, students will become familiar with a wide range of thinkers, currents, concepts, topics, and they will be exposed to frameworks of decolonial history and knowledge. The class will also facilitate conversations about the current place of Latinx cultures within the U.S. imaginary, including the immigrant groups from Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean, as well Indigenous and Afro-diasporic communities.... Read more about Topics in Latinx Studies: Imagining Latinidad

    Power, Knowledge, Identity: Critical Approaches to Race and Ethnicity

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    How might critical attention to race and ethnicity as they intersect with gender and sexuality—and also frameworks of indigeneity and class—shape how we study? How do these lenses shift the questions we ask, the information that counts as data, and the genres of work that we recognize as 'academic'? For those newer to studies of race and ethnicity, this course provides intersectional frameworks for recognizing what assumptions undergird academic projects and fields of study. For those familiar with ethnic studies, it aims to serve as a ‘Theories and Methods’ course, providing tools and strategies for refining one's own interdisciplinary inquiries.... Read more about Power, Knowledge, Identity: Critical Approaches to Race and Ethnicity

    Tattoo: Histories and Practices

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    This course’s focus is on the social history of tattooing in Europe and North America from the mid-18th century to the present. The course also considers tattoo practices in Asian, Polynesian, and indigenous North America cultures. In addition to their own intrinsic interest, these practices and their histories are essential to a critical understanding of the development of tattooing within globalized modern and post-modern culture.... Read more about Tattoo: Histories and Practices

    The Politics and Aesthetics of Mourning

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    In this course, we will study literary responses to and representations of loss, both public and private, in twentieth- and twenty-first-century French literature. We will investigate how mourning intersects with various theoretical and historical topics including gender and sexuality, the memory of war, and the AIDS epidemic. We will discuss how the particular intellectual contexts and historical events of the twentieth century brought about shifts in the way that individuals and communities experienced loss and worked through grief. We will consider how the work of mourning generates political as well as aesthetic questions, and we will ask how literature helps us to think about loss and to propose alternative models of mourning. Readings may include literary works by Marcel Proust, Simone de Beauvoir, Hervé Guibert, and Patrick Modiano. We will also look at theoretical writings on loss from a variety of perspectives, from psychoanalysis to deconstruction and queer theory.... Read more about The Politics and Aesthetics of Mourning

    Implicit Bias: Science and Society

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    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 science of implicit bias, with a focus on disparities that emerge along the lines of social categories of age, gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic class, physical attributes, religion, politics, language and culture, geographic region and nationality.... Read more about Implicit Bias: Science and Society

    Morphosemantics

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    This course explores how nominal features like person, number, and grammatical gender are formally marked as well as interpreted, with greatest attention paid to grammatical gender. Are categories such as “masculine”, “feminine”, and “neuter” linguistically on equal footing, or are there asymmetries in how they are morphologically expressed or in how they map onto meanings? Are these categories represented consistently across languages? Depending on enrollee/participant interests, topics may include the representation of “markedness”; morphosyntactic defaults; connections between notional and non-notional gender assignment to nouns; gender and scope interactions; the interpretability of fake indexicals; and singular they.... Read more about Morphosemantics

    Psychopathologies of Modern Life

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    What is the relationship between cultural change and individual pathology?  Are the stresses of modern life implicated in the emergence of new forms of psychic distress and mental illness?  Over the past century, psychological experts have identified new emotions, dissatisfactions, and disorders, producing an expansive catalogue of modern woes and fashioning a range of remedies.  With attention to variations across race and gender, we  explore the coalescence and cultural fortunes of, among other topics, the personality disorders (narcissism, BPD); trauma, PTSD; disorders of identity and of attachment; social anxiety, isolation;  gaslighting; Black Rage; greed, success neurosis, imposter syndrome; stress, coping, burnout.... Read more about Psychopathologies of Modern Life

    Human Rights and Humanitarianism in the Modern World

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    Human rights and humanitarianism are fundamental to modern political ethics. Yet the moral consensus surrounding these terms obscures an often disturbing history. This course is an introduction to human rights and humanitarianism as frameworks for understanding European, imperial, and global history from the enlightenment to the present day. Rather than uncritically accepting a triumphalist narrative, we will explore how these concepts were constructed over time, asking how they were used in practice, whose interests they served, and how they enabled inequality and exclusion along axes of race, gender, class, and nationality even as they promised a more just world.... Read more about Human Rights and Humanitarianism in the Modern World

    American Noir

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    This class will examine noir not only as an aesthetic—brutality disguised in beauty—but also as a social commentary on American life in the 1940s and 50s. How did cultural conceptions of the tough guy and femme fatale reflect or shape the gender and sexual politics of the era? How did noir speak to anxieties surrounding race, ethnicity, and social class? And how did America’s anti-heroes reflect a changing conception of nationhood and citizenship in the atomic age? By looking at cultural works like films, novels, and true crime pieces in the context of postwar psychology and sociology, we will consider what audiences’ fascination with violence, murder, and deceit revealed about the American identity.... Read more about American Noir

    German History from Bismarck to Hitler

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    German History loomed like a specter over the twentieth century. In the twenty-first century, Americans have been debating the relevance and legitimacy of comparisons between German history and our contemporary world. How useful is German history for understanding our current moment? How might our present day concerns distort what we see in the past? This course will examine the history of Germans in Europe and elsewhere, starting with the revolutions of 1848 and ending with the separation of Austria, West Germany, and East Germany following the Second World War. Themes will be war, insurrection, and terrorism, revolution and counter-revolution, gender and sexuality, reform, violence, anti-semitism, racial thinking and racism, and migration.... Read more about German History from Bismarck to Hitler

    Questions of Theory

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021

    To explore key literary, cultural and critical theories, we pose questions through readings of classic and contemporary theorists, from Aristotle to Kant, Schiller, Arendt, Barthes, Foucault, Glissant, Ortiz, Kittler, and Butler, among others. Their approaches include aesthetics, (post)structuralism, (post)colonialism, media theory, gender theory, ecocriticism. Each seminar addresses a core reading and a cluster of variations. Weekly writing assignments will formulate a question that addresses the core texts to prepare for in-class discussions and interpretive activities.... Read more about Questions of Theory

    Migration

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021

    Migration, both voluntary and involuntary, helps to shape the culture, society, economics, and politics of the modern world. It benefits both movers and receiving countries, but also entails considerable costs.  The course begins with consideration of the broad sweep of population movements, and addresses various impacts on both migrants and receiving countries.  It focuses primarily, however, on the politics of and political science research about contemporary population movements in the United States and other western nations. Topics include patterns of incorporation and exclusion, consequences of different legal statuses, and the differential impact of migrants’ nationality, gender, and class status.... Read more about Migration

    Slavery in the Global Middle Ages

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021

    This course focuses on systems of human bondage in the period stretching from ancient Rome to the eve of the sixteenth century, which is when modern racialized slavery began to predominate. Though class readings will focus on the historical and archaeological evidence from the societies ringing the Mediterranean Sea and Indian Ocean, students are warmly encouraged to develop research projects featuring the slave systems of East Asia and the New World.

    Learning Objectives. After successfully completing this course, students will have acquired:

    • A framework for understanding the history of Old World slavery, principally Western Eurasia, Africa, and the Indian Ocean, from ancient Rome to the 16th century
    • An introduction to slave systems in the New World and an understanding of forms of Indigenous slavery
    • An understanding of major themes in the general history and anthropology of slavery, including the role of race and gender, the forms of domination, and the existence of inter-cultural and historical variation
    • Skills associated with identifying and working with primary and secondary sources in multiple languages
    • The ability to design and execute a historical research project

    ... Read more about Slavery in the Global Middle Ages

    Readings in Native American and Indigenous Studies: Seminar

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2021
    This course offers a survey of the historiography of Native American and Indigenous Studies.  Centered on six themes—Power and the Middle Ground, Borderlands, Settler Colonialism and Sovereignty, Race and Slavery, Modernity and Futurity, and Global and Comparative Indigeneity—the course is designed to allow explorations into additional terrain, including gender and sexuality, law and policy, and comparative ethnic studies, among others.  Core readings will focus on recently published scholarship.  To explore field trajectories, scholarly exchange, and indigenous politics, members of the class will research and write historiographical essays that will be shared collectively, and form the basis for seminar discussion.... Read more about Readings in Native American and Indigenous Studies: Seminar

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