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Fall 2020 Seminars

HON 201 The Individual and Society
Instructors: Madeleine Arseneault (Philosophy) James Schiffer (English), Hamilton Stapell (History), Patricia A. Sullivan (Digital Media & Journalism, Honors), & Thomas Festa (English)
GE Requirement:  Humanities (HUM)

Investigates the relationship between the individual and society through discussion of the philosophic, literary, and historical aspects of major texts.

HON 202 Work
Instructor: Susan Books (Secondary Education)
GE Requirement: Diversity (DIVR)

Learning to do a job is one thing; learning to appropriate and affirm meaningful work for oneself is another. A focus on the broad concept of work invites consideration of a range of conceptual and policy-related questions.

HON 375 Doing Race and Gender
Instructor: Anne Roschelle (Sociology & WGSS)
GE Requirement: Diversity (DIVR)

Using feminist and racial-ethnic theories we will analyze how gender, race, and class oppression shape the experiences of women and how we, as agents of social change, can translate these theoretical insights into methodological strategies.

HON 393 Evolution and the Human Condition
Instructor: Glenn Geher (Psychology)

The implications of Darwin's ideas for what it means to be human cannot be understated. Over the past several decades, evolution-based scholarship has shed light on all facets of the human experience, including religion, education, politics, warfare, the arts - and more. This class will be a journey into what it means to be human - consistently focusing on the evolutionary perspective. Implications for societal policies will be discussed.

HON 393 Metropolis to Megalopolis: New York City Culture 1870-1930 
Instructor: Susan Lewis (History)

Between 1870 and 1929 New York City grew from a thriving metropolis to a world-famous megalopolis, and emerged as a center for international culture. This course examines the literature, fashion, visual and performing arts originating in America's premiere city, as well as the contributions of immigrants, African-Americans, women, and individuals of diverse sexual orientations to the phenomenal cultural blossoming of this period. The course will cover popular music, dance crazes, Broadway and the birth of the film industry, Coney Island, Bohemian intellectuals and arts movements, as well as the Harlem Renaissance and transatlantic modernism.

HON 393 Cherokee History, Culture, and Politics: Past and Present
Instructor: Meg D. O'Sullivan (History & WGSS)

This course examines the pre-colonization history of the Cherokees through the present moment. It will focus on cultural, social, and political history in order to understand the contemporary issues that impact citizen Cherokees. Particular attention will be given to tribal sovereignty, citizenship, gender, and race.



Spring 2020 Seminars 

HON 203 What Causes Cancer?
Instructor: Jennifer Waldo (Biology)
GE Requirement:  Natural Science (NSCI)

There is no simple answer to the question of what causes cancer. Cancer is not a single thing; it manifests itself differently in each individual. After an introduction to the basic science necessary for understanding the development of cancer, a series of popularly held beliefs regarding cancer causation will be critically analyzed. With these examples as a foundation, students will research and report on a topic on their own choice.

HON 316 Debates in U.S. History
Instructor: Patricia A. Sullivan (Digital Media & Journalism, Honors)
GE Requirement:  United States Studies (USST)

An exploration of selected and pivotal topics in the history of the United States from the colonial period through today. Politics, economics, society, and culture will be examined focusing on primary source documents and images.

HON 371 Education Across Borders
Instructor: Susan Books (Teaching & Learning)
GE Requirement: World Civilizations (WRLD)

Exploration of the culture and history of selected non-Western countries - initially, China, South Africa, and Afghanistan - and of how the cultural/historical context affects schooling in these countries, past and present.

HON 374 The Materials of History, Thought, and Art
Instructor: Andrea Varga (Theatre Arts)
GE Requirement: Western Civilization (WEST)

An interdisciplinary seminar in material cultural studies, this course examines how human interactions with objects and the lived environment have shaped culture and intellectual endeavor through time.

HON 393 Visualizing Myth in Ancient Greece and Rome
Instructor: Keely Heuer (Art History)

Classical art and Greco-Roman mythology are inseparable. During the 8th century B.C., ancient Greeks began visually depicting recognizable mythological figures in various media, which in turn led to an obsession in the following centuries that continued in the Roman world. More than a collection of tales derived from a tradition of oral storytelling, myth reinforced social values, explained the workings of the natural world, formed a collective identity among large groups of people, provided historical roots, and inspired poets, philosophers, and playwrights. This course will discuss the representation of a wide range of Greco-Roman gods, heroes, and monsters as well as their characteristic attributes and respective stories. Students will explore how mythological imagery in Greek and Roman art served as political propaganda and allusions to contemporary historical events. Illustrations of myths will be compared to the surviving literary record to discuss issues such as the preservation of alternative forms of narratives, individual artistic license, and the reconstruction of long-lost texts, including epic poems and plays.

HON 393 Innovation and Intelligence
Instructor: Jared Nelson (Engineering Programs)

By synthesizing multiple forms of intelligence, new understandings of what is innovation will be examined by investigating the creative process of design as well as identification of innovative products and other ideas identified by the class.

HON 393 Gender & Journalism: Representation & Practice
Instructor: Rachel Somerstein (Digital Media & Journalism)

In the U.S., as in much of the world, women and people of color are under-represented in newsrooms; under-represented in leadership positions in newsrooms; and make less money than their white and male colleagues. In this course, we look to sociological and journalism-studies theories to explain why news-work continues to be so gendered and white, despite women outnumbering men in undergraduate and graduate communications programs. In the second part of the course, we turn to theories about representation in news, considering the degree to which women, transgender people, and people of color are symbolically annihilated: shown in stereotypical roles or absented from the news-world altogether.