Fall 2015 Syllabus

Western Humanities II

Paul Schacht, SUNY Geneseo

Office Hours

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Texts

Pope Francis, On Care for Our Common Home (Laudato Si’)

John Locke, Second Treatise of Government

Denis Diderot, Rameau’s Nephew (in Readings)

William Blake, Songs of Innocence and of Experience

Karl Marx, Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts 

Henry David Thoreau, Walden, “Resistance to Civil Government”

Sigmund Freud, Civilization and Its Discontents

Assorted Historical Documents

Other readings as assigned

Learning Outcomes

Students  in HUMN 221 will:

Requirements

Papers and exams (other than final): 50%

Activities: 25%

Final: 25%

Activities

To get credit for your activities, you must log them here. You can check the actvity log entries here.

Code

Activity

B

On days marked “B,” we’ll decide what kind of background we need to gain a better understanding of the text we’re reading. Each group will research a different background question and present findings both orally and in writing. Responsibility will circulate among group members.

P

On days marked “P,” each group will select a passage from the main text for discussion. Within the group, they’ll take up these questions:

  • What’s relationship of the passage to the work as a whole? (How does it fit into the larger fabric? What themes/issues does it exemplify that run throughout the work?)
  • What difficult issues does the passage raise for us? (Not “Why is it hard to understand?” but rather, “What does it call into question in our lives or our world? What does it challenge in the way we think about or do things?”)
  • What passages, if any, does the passage in question connect with in the papal encyclical?

Groups will report out, followed by full-class discussion. Groups must record their findings in writing before the next class. Responsibility for recording will circulate among group members.

N

On days marked “N,” each group will connect the text under discussion to something in the news. Groups will report out both orally and in writing. Responsibility will circulate among group members.

W

On days marked “W,” each student, before class, will write a paragraph that follows the following template: “You might think that [author] is saying [statement], but in reality, it’s more complicated.” The paragraph must explain why one might be misled as well as why the author’s point is more complicated, supporting these explanations with quotations.

Schedule

Week

Date

Reading

Activity

Writing

1

M 8/31

none

Introduction to the course

W 9/2

Francis, Chapters 1-3

P (see activity key above)

F 9/4

Francis, to end

P

2

M 9/7

Labor Day

W 9/9

Locke, Chapters 1-4

B

F 9/11

Locke, Chapters 5-7

P

3

M 9/14

Locke, Chapters 9-14

P

W 9/16

Locke, Chapter 19

N

F 9/18

W

4

M 9/21

Diderot

B

W 9/23

No class

F 9/25

P

5

M 9/28

W

W 9/30

W

F 10/2

P

6

M 10/5

Blake

B

W 10/7

P

First paper draft due

F 10/9

P

7

M 10/12

Fall Break

W 10/14

P

F 10/16

N

First paper due. Before sharing the final version, be sure to complete this checklist.

8

M 10/19

U.S. Constitution, Declaration of Independence

B

W 10/21

Marx, “Estranged Labor”; Stanton, et al. “Declaration of Sentiments”; Martineau, “Political Non-Existence of Women”

P

F 10/23

Marx, “Private Property and Communism”

P/B

9

M 10/26

Marx,“Human Requirements and Division of Labour Under the Rule of Private Property”

P

W 10/28

Marx,“The Power of Money”

P

F 10/30

N

10

M 11/2

Thoreau, Walden, “Economy”

P

W 11/4

Thoreau, Walden, “Where I Lived, and What I Lived For”

P

F 11/6

Thoreau, Walden, “Reading” through “Visitors”

P

11

M 11/9

Thoreau, Walden, “The Bean-Field” through “Baker Farm”

N

W 11/11

Thoreau, Walden, “Higher Laws” through “House-Warming”

P

F 11/13

Thoreau, Walden, “Former Inhabitants” through “Conclusion”

W

12

M 11/16

Thoreau, “Resistance to Civil Government”

B

W 11/18

Frederick Douglass, “Oration, Delivered In Corinthian Hall, Rochester, By Frederick Douglass, July 5th, 1852”; Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address, Second Inaugural Address

N

F 11/20

Work on final exam

W

13

M 11/23

Work on final exam

W

W 11/25

Thanksgiving Break

F 11/27

14

M 11/30

Freud, Chapters 1-3

B

W 12/2

Freud, Chapters 4-6

P

F 12/4

Freud, Chapters 7-8

P

15

M 12/7

Coates, “The Case for Reparations”

P

W 12/9

P

F 12/11

Work on final exam

16

M 12/14

Timothy Snyder, “Hitler’s World”; “The Next Genocide”

P

T 12/22, 8-11:20 am

FINAL EXAM