Fall 2018 GLS Course Descriptions

Please note that course descriptions are for reference only and are subject to change.

Advanced Writing Studio

Cultural Foundations I

Cultural Foundations III

Global Cultures

Global Topics

Global Writing Seminar

Science

Senior Colloquium I

Senior Seminars

Social Foundations I

Social Foundations III


Advanced Writing Studio

AWS-UF 201.001 | MW 11:00pm-12:15pm | Elayne Tobin

Other Voices, Other Rooms: Autobiography, Memoir, and the Global Self

In this course, we will be examining how writers write, how we read, and how observing and transforming our own reading skills and attitudes about language can help us improve our own prose. We will be focusing specifically on autobiography and memoir, and how differing notions of  “selfhood” help construct our stories, as well as help us read and interpret the stories of others. While autobiography is generally understood to refer to the narrative of a whole life, memoir tends to take on a specific theme or time period in one’s life. Nevertheless, we will explore and compare the genres themselves.

We will explore memoirs/autobiographies in traditional forms, through poetry, film, fiction, and nonfiction to explore how people have written about themselves and why. We will also compare how cultural, socio-economic, and geographic differences may influence and inflect both the process of memoir writing and the way that writing gets interpreted and used across varies histories and cultures. We will focus our own writing toward the autobiographical and will work with experimental forms in an intense workshop environment. The goal of the course is to become better critical readers of the genre, while at the same time working rigorously and critically on our own written production.

Why focus on writing the “self”?  Because writing and creating languages of artistic remembrance and history-making are the tools we use to make our way in the world; we write to explore, explain, complain, cry out, critique, commiserate, declare, decry, denounce, demystify…you get the idea. Writing is a way not only of recording thoughts and emotions, facts and fictions, but it is the process of using language that brings those elements of our lives into being in the first place. And if you are going to make your way through this messed-up, alienating, strange, and glorious place called existence, you better hope you can talk and that people will listen. In turn, you need to understand how other people use memory, so you can craft your own. Otherwise, what’s the whole point?

AWS-UF 201.002 | TR 4:55pm-6:10pm | Eugene Ostashevsky

Translation and Difference

Students in this workshop translate a single author of their choice over the whole semester.  The translation process includes in-class peer critiques as well as instructor feedback. The final product is a polished translation portfolio introduced by a short essay on rendering the author’s individual style in English. The theoretical aspect of the course examines the implications, for translators, of the hypothesis of linguistic relativity (briefly, that different languages model the world differently). Aspiring translators learn to analyze grammatical and vocabulary differences between languages in order to develop equivalents that are more precise in meaning. They also learn to attend to significant sound patterns. Finally, the course discusses the impact of the global dominance of English on literary and translation markets.


 Cultural Foundations I

CFI-UF 101.101 | MW 2:00-3:15 | David Larsen

Course Description TBA

CFI-UF 101.102 | TR 2:00-3:15 |  Nancy Reale

Duty, Death, and Devotion

We will examine ancient literary, visual, and architectural texts that have exerted global cultural influences and provided aesthetic pleasure, investigating how and why these texts served such functions in the past and what their value is for the present.  Through close critical analysis, we will consider the roles of the arts in the ancient world and what they have come to mean for modernity.  We will concentrate on the epic as a literary vehicle for encoding social and religious traditions and values, interrogating how this form was developed and utilized and why its primacy was challenged by other literary forms.  We will engage various ancient modes of apprehending the nature of the cosmos and divinity, and we will explore how the arts facilitated personal introspection and expression.   We will examine different literary and visual texts by considering these topics: heroes and kings, community, individual voices, and gods incarnate.  Among our readings: the Ramayana, Gilgamesh, the Iliad, the Aeneid; selections from the Bible, the Bhagavad Gita, the Ashvaghosha, and the Samyutta Nikaya.

CFI-UF 101.103 | MW 9:30-10:45 | Martin Reichert

Course Description TBA

CFI-UF 101.104 | TR 9:10-10:45 | Afrodesia McCannon

Course Description TBA


Cultural Foundations III

In addition to the Advanced Writing Studio and Global Topics courses listed on this document, students have the option to take Cultural Foundations III or Social Foundations III to satisfy the GLS Upper Division Elective requirement. Please note that these courses include both GLS and Liberal Studies Core Program students.

Cultural Foundations III course descriptions can be found here.


Global Cultures

AFRICAN GLOBAL CULTURES

AFGC-UF 101.001 | TR 12:30-1:45 | Kyle Wanberg

AFGC-UF 101.002 | TR 11:00-12:15 | Kyle Wanberg

        Course Description TBA

AFGC-UF 101.003 | TR 2:00-3:15 | Adedamola Osinulu

AFGC-UF 101.004 | TR 3:30-4:45 | Adedamola Osinulu

Course Description TBA

CARIBBEAN GLOBAL CULTURES

CAGC-UF 101.001 | TR 3:30-4:45 | Ifeona Fulani

Islands in the Caribbean archipelago have been variously characterized as paradisical, the sites of wealth-producing plantations, the ideal Spring Break destination, even as staging posts for narcotics traders. Caribbean landscapes function as metaphor, emblem, symbol, or even characters. Landscape – and geography - is implicated in the ways the identities
of Caribbean states have been influenced by an accumulation of images, cultivated primarily by non-Caribbean individuals and agencies, including Columbus’ journal entries, the documentation of European colonial governments and settlers, the brochures travel agents and the fantasies of tourists. Often in conflict with the fantasy projections of others, Caribbean peoples face the ongoing challenge of reclaiming their islands and building their societies, still haunted by histories of slavery and colonialism, while still subjected to multiple forms of commodification, consumption and economic domination. Based on readings from literature, history and cultural studies, this course takes an interdisciplinary, transnational approach to unpacking connections between the histories of slavery, indentureship and European colonialism and the Caribbean’s current realities of inequality, internally – in particular inequalities of race and gender - and in its economic relations with the West. Questions addressed include: How have the residual legacies of slavery and colonization facilitated consumption in and of the Caribbean?  And what cultural resources and strengths are deployed or lost to migration?

LATIN AMERICAN GLOBAL CULTURES

LAGC-UF 101.001 | MW 9:30-10:45 | Patricio Navia

LAGC-UF 101.002 | MW 12:30-1:45  | Patricio Navia

LAGC-UF 101.005 | MW 11:00-12:15 | Patricio Navia

This course provides students with a general view of Latin American and the Caribbean. We study the region’s history, culture, arts, society, economy and recent political developments. Prior knowledge of Latin America is not required. In fact, because of the diversity within the region, some students familiar with one country will learn plenty about other countries. Latin America and the Caribbean is a diverse region with a wealth of different cultures, societies, economies and political systems. By providing a historical overview of the region during the first weeks, the class will build on that foundation to quickly reach 20 th -century and 21 st -century Latin America. We will also discuss Latinos in the U.S. The focus is generally historical, sociological, political and economic, but culture and the arts are also widely discussed.

LATIN AMERICAN GLOBAL CULTURES

LAGC-UF 101.003 | TR 11:00-12:15 | Luis Ramos

LAGC-UF 101.004 | TR 12:30-1:45 | Luis Ramos

It is often said that literature and politics are inextricably linked in Latin America. But how has literature helped shape political discourse in the region and how has politics, in turn, informed its literature and art? Drawing from a wide range of disciplines (literary criticism, history and political theory) and genres (poetry, fiction and the visual arts), in this course we will closely examine works that probe the boundary between politics and art under shifting historical conditions. We will begin by considering the origins of Latin American literature’s intimate relation to politics through works that recall the pre-colonial past or record indigenous rebellions against Spanish authorities. We will then turn to artists and writers who were instrumental in redefining the role of literature and art as revolutionary weapons or as instruments of nation-building in the independence era. Finally, we will examine works that probe the boundaries of the national body by casting a critical light on state violence in the twentieth-century. Among the leading questions that will inform class discussion: How has the political and aesthetic function of literature in Latin America changed over time? How has the intellectual historically assumed the role of agent or critic of the state? What do literature and art suggest about the relation between the state and its margins, between history and memory, and between elite and subaltern subjects?

MIDDLE EASTERN GLOBAL CULTURES

MEGC-UF 101.001 | MW 2:00-3:15 | Peter Valenti

MEGC-UF 101.002 | TR 12:30-1:45 | Peter Valenti

Course Description TBA


Global Topics

GT-UF 201.001 | TR 11:00-12:15 |  Afrodesia McCannon

ARTS AND LITERATURES

Unacceptable: Iconoclasm, Censorship, Burning – When Art Gets Destroyed

This course investigates the purposeful destruction and repression of the arts as it has occurred in different parts of the globe. As long as there has been art, there have been attempts to annihilate it; artists and writers have long been distrusted. The rationale for why art is unacceptable differs depending on culture, time period, and the individual art objects themselves. We will look at some of the most striking modern examples of art that is deemed unacceptable by some – cartoons, films, books and fine art. The course further considers the history of destroying art and explores how globalization and cross-cultural interaction has influenced extreme reactions to art. Art is powerful and can produce powerful reactions. We will, with the help of recent scholarship and writings, reflect on how to look critically at art that offends. The course requires two short papers and one longer research paper. Student will also be expected to present their work in groups and as individuals. An important goal of the class is to assist students as emerging researchers, and so students will be asked to find sound sources on their own (after a library orientation) and to reflect on those sources. A substantial part of the grade is class participation.

GT-UF 201.002 | TR 2:00-3:15 | Anthony Reynolds

ARTS AND LITERATURES

Global Maladies - Trauma Studies in the Age of Globalization

From antiquity to the present, the subject of violence has retained a perennial appeal for the arts. Yet the mythical violence represented so graphically in the arts of antiquity (one thinks of Homer’s Iliad, for instance) has yielded over the course of history to a more psychological understanding of violence that has proven highly resistant to representation within the arts. In our modern experience of violence, Freudian psychoanalysis suggests, our psychological defenses are often overwhelmed and the traumatic experience itself remains troublingly unassimilated within our consciousness. It is thus often in its absence (and precisely as an absence) that violent experience is recorded in our psyches and in our arts. The discipline of what is now called “trauma studies” emerged in response to such problems of representation within the arts that were produced in the aftermath of the Holocaust. In the context of this relatively new field of research the arts came to be seen not only as symptoms of traumatic psychopathology, but perhaps more importantly as a therapeutic means by which to reclaim and even rehabilitate such difficult traumatic experience. Currently, trauma studies finds itself undergoing a process of globalization or global expansion. Having been introduced into far-flung fields of cultural production throughout Africa, Asia, and South America, its methods are now beginning to inform research into a range of contemporary global topics including decolonization, ethnic cleansing and genocide, the global drug trade, international terrorism, natural resource based conflicts, and the rise of what Naomi Klein calls “disaster capital,” to name just a few. In this seminar we will review the history of the modern psychoanalytic concept of trauma which was developed originally in Freud’s analysis of veterans returning from WWI and the way in which this new concept begins to be negotiated within the literature and the arts of the modern period. Once we have become familiar with the fundamental concepts of trauma studies, we will examine a series of case studies in the artistic representation of modern traumatic violence focusing on the Holocaust, Hiroshima, Vietnam, Rwanda, Bosnia, and 9/11. As part of our investigation we will document the innovative forms, methods and styles and that have begun to emerge within a range of artistic forms including architecture, dance, film, literature, music and painting to accommodate such violence. And finally we will want to assess the value of employing the methods of trauma studies within the field of postcolonial research.

GT-UF 201.003 | MW 2:00-3:15 | Martin Reichert

LAW, ETHICS, AND RELIGION

Religious Violence

In recent years, violence motivated by religious motives has erupted all around the globe: 9/11, the gas attacks in the Tokyo subway, quarreling Hindus and Muslims in India, right-wing Christians bombing abortion clinics around the US, angry Muslims and Jews in the Middle East. What is the connection between religion and violence? And why are so many religious attacks on public order occurring now? Can religion be a source of peace? We will look to thinkers—most notably René Girard and James Gilligan—who seek to understand the contemporary cultural, political, and religious crisis, and we will examine the lives and work of people who have tried to find a nonviolent way out: Gandhi, King.

GT-UF 201.004 | TR 12:30-1:45 | Jennifer Zoble

CONTEMPORARY CULTURE AND CREATIVE PRODUCTION

Traitors, Losers, and Infidels: The Art of the Literary Translator

Translators occupy a complicated position in the world of literary production. Celebrated and  maligned, scrutinized and ignored, they make an invaluable cultural contribution in the eyes of  some, while others regard them as a regrettable necessity. No doubt you’ve read thousands of  their words on dozens of occasions, but how often have you explicitly discussed their work? In  this course, we’ll investigate the practice of literary translation: how translations get made, how  translators approach their texts, how translations are received and read, and how all of these  dynamics have varied across time and place.    While reading a selection of books and essays on literary translation, students will produce a  three-­‐part written project that will include: 1) a short prose or poetry translation (undertaken  either alone, if the student’s foreign language proficiency is adequate, or in tandem with an  advanced or native speaker of the text’s source language); 2) a critical introduction elaborating  the historical, linguistic, and aesthetic context of the translated work; and, 3) a reflective  conclusion explaining their writing and research process. Students will workshop each part of  their project in groups of four, with two students taking a turn in each of eight workshop sessions.  The class will have the opportunity to speak with local literary translators and attend translation-­‐ focused events throughout the city. Proficiency in a language other than English is not required, but those students capable of working inter-ingually will be encouraged to do so.


Global Writing Seminar

GWS-UF 101.001 | MW 12:30-1:45 | Mitchell Jackson

Course Description TBA

GWS-UF 101.002 | MW 2:00-3:15 | James Polchin

The Writer and the Photograph

This seminar engages with the social and political meanings of photography. Situated at the nexus between writing and image making, the seminar assignments will explore the many paradoxes of photography as memory, cultural artifact, and evidence. What can a photograph tell us about our world, or the worlds beyond us? How can a photograph both document experience and distort it as well? More crucially, what can photography help us understand about our writing practices? And, what is the relationship between story, essay, and image?
Drawing on writers and thinkers across different cultural landscapes, the seminar will engage with a diversity of ideas about photography. Working with both digital and print formats, assignments will include two substantial long-form essays on subjects of the student’s own choosing, and several short-form writings. Each student will be expected to develop his or her own lines of inquiry through the course material, taking independent approaches to the assignments.

GWS-UF 101.003 | MW 3:30-4:45 | Nina D’Alessandro

Course Description TBA

GWS-UF 101.004 | TR 12:30-1:45 | Heather Masri

Course Description TBA

GWS-UF 101.005 | TR 3:30-4:45 | Robin Goldfin

Course Description TBA

GWS-UF 101.006 | TR 2:00-3:15 | Sean Eve

Course Description TBA


Science

LIVN-UF 101.001 | MW 9:30-10:45 | Eugenia Naro-Maciel

Living in the Anthropocene

With the explosive growth of the human population, especially since the Industrial Revolution, our species has impacted the Earth to such an unprecedented extent that we are entering a new geologic age. Changes that have significantly impacted the earth can be divided into these four categories: physical, biological, environmental, and climatological. This class explores each of these topics through both a global and a local lens in the form of short lectures, case studies, field trips, virtual and hands-on laboratory activities or exercises, documentaries, and discussion and debate of historical and current scientific literature.  Students attend and write about events throughout New York City related to critical local and global environmental issues, including special museum exhibits, field trips to local conservation projects, talks and screenings, and other local institutions or events that highlight the topics covered in the course. Connections of course topics to Liberal Studies juniors’ global sites of study will be emphasized through class discussions and student presentations, to cover historical biogeography, biodiversity, and climate change in an increasingly human-dominated world.


Senior Colloquium I

SCOI-UF 401.001 | MW 12:30-1:45 | Tamuira Reid

CONTEMPORARY CULTURE AND CREATIVE PRODUCTION

SCOI-UF 401.002 | TR 2:00-3:15 | Ascension Mejorado

POLITICS, RIGHTS, AND DEVELOPMENT

SCOI-UF 401.003 | MW 11:00-12:15 | Johann Jaeckel

POLITICS, RIGHTS, AND DEVELOPMENT

SCOI-UF 401.004 | TR 2:00-3:15 |  Amy Wilkinson

CONTEMPORARY CULTURE AND CREATIVE PRODUCTION

SCOI-UF 401.005 | MW 2:00-3:15 | Joyce Apsel

POLITICS, RIGHTS, AND DEVELOPMENT

This senior colloquium follows multiple tracks-- -thesis research and writing as well as critical approaches to the politics of human rights and wrongs-- and these tracks overlap throughout the semester. In keeping with the global orientation of GLS, the colloquium is a Topic Centered course on issues of Politics, the State, Human Rights and Wrongs. Students will be assigned readings about the nature of history: What is it? What discourses are involved in writing and understanding history and politics? How are these discourses situated differently? From issues of identity to the challenges of addressing conflict and violence, the course links with migration, displaced peoples, identity, conflict, targeted violence, and of processes of implementing human rights and addressing a range of wrongs globally. Globalization, environmental scarcity and conflict are among the factors contributing to global population displacements including internally displaced persons and refugees. Some key themes include: the state and power (building walls), critiques of the state, rights and humanitarianism triad. Debate and informed discussion based on the readings are crucial elements for a vibrant classroom.

SCOI-UF 401.006 | TR 4:45-6:10 | Mona El-Ghobashy

POLITICS, RIGHTS, AND DEVELOPMENT

SCOI-UF 401.007 | MW 9:30-10:45 | Matt Longabucco

CONTEMPORARY CULTURE AND CREATIVE PRODUCTION

SCOI-UF 401.008 | TR 12:30-1:45 | Regina Gramer

LAW, ETHICS, AND RELIGION

SCOI-UF 401.009 | TR 11:00-12:15 | Nancy Reale

ARTS AND LITERATURES

SCOI-UF 401.010 | TR 2:00-3:15 | Peter Valenti

LAW, ETHICS, AND RELIGION

SCOI-UF 401.011 | TR 3:30pm-4:45pm | Peter Diamond

POLITICS, RIGHTS, AND DEVELOPMENT

SCOI-UF 401.012 | MW 4:45-6:10 | James Polchin

CONTEMPORARY CULTURE AND CREATIVE PRODUCTION

Senior Colloquium is an intensive research and writing workshop focused on framing your senior thesis from initial ideas to prospectus. Students are also expected to develop the initial parts of their thesis or process document by the end of the term. The colloquium is ideally suited for students interested in doing creative projects in the areas of creative nonfiction or fiction, or critical projects in areas of creative writing and/or visual cultures. We will combine a diversity of readings to model approaches to your own thesis, conduct research appropriate to your project, and formulate working methods that will help you craft a significant part of the thesis this term. The course will balance between discussions, group workshops, and individual conferences with the professor. This course is the first part of a year-long sequence focused on the complete of your thesis.

SCOI-UF 401.013 | TR 11:00-12:15 | Brendan Hogan

POLITICS, RIGHTS, AND DEVELOPMENT

SCOI-UF 401.014 | TR 12:30-1:45 | Ifeona Fulani

IDENTITIES AND REPRESENTATIONS


Senior Seminars

SCAI-UF 401.001 | TR 11:00-12:15 | Jeannine Chandler

Imagining Shangri-la: Asia and Asians in Western Perspective

Variously portrayed as a land of backward heathens as well as a repository of sacred knowledge, the “Orient” has occupied the minds of Western adventurers, philosophers, authors and policy-makers. In this course, students will examine these changing Western perspectives on Asia and Asians over the last several hundred years (with the particular focus being American views of China/Chinese). Topics will include Western views on Eastern religion, Europe’s characterization of different Asian groups, the threat of the “Yellow peril,” the development of anti-Asian sentiments in the United States and its impact on policy, and Hollywood’s depictions of Asians (e.g. Fu Manchu, Charlie Chan, and John Wayne as Genghis Khan). Ultimately, students will analyze Asia’s internalization of these representations and discuss how that process has influenced the emergence of modern Asian identities. This course is a seminar; as such, the class will be largely student-directed and discussion-based.

SCAI-UF 401.002 | TR 12:30-1:45 | Peter Diamond

Nationalism and Democracy in an Age of Globalization

This course will examine the challenges posed by the rise of nationalist conflict since the end of the Cold War, as governments around the world are confronted by demands from ethnic groups for recognition, protection, or autonomy within the boundaries of the state. We begin by examining the meaning of nationalism, which remains a complex and much contested concept. While the resurgence of nationalism is not in dispute, its origin and its meaning are subjects of deep debate among contemporary social scientists and historians. Did the collapse of the bipolar balance of power in the 1990s simply allow ancient cultural hatreds to resurface? Or is nationalism largely a reaction to democratization, economic development, and a revolution in the means of communication? We will attempt to answer these questions in the context of the recent increase in international migration as a result of global economic and political developments. In addition to these empirical questions, we will also examine debates among political theorists over the justifiability of nationalism. Some liberal theorists tend to view nationalism with suspicion, since its emphasis on community and belonging, as well as the desire to seek political support and protection for these feelings, puts it at odds with liberal commitments to individual rights and to freedom and equality as universal values. But others argue that recognition and protection of national minorities is a precondition for a just society, particularly when the viability of such groups may be undermined by economic and political decisions taken by the majority. We will think through these normative debates by examining several recent or on-going controversies occasioned by nationalist conflict. Should ethnic or national groups have publicly funded education in their native language? Should the traditional homelands of indigenous peoples be reserved for their benefit, and so protected from settlement or development by “outsiders”? What are the obligations of liberal democracies with respect to religious or cultural practices of national groups that are deemed “illiberal” by mainstream society?

SCAI-UF 401.003 | TR 9:30am-10:45am | Roxana Julia

Alternatives to Neoliberal Globalization

The corporate-driven neoliberal globalization model that has dominated the global economy during the last three decades has shown immense productive and growth capacity, but has also increased wealth disparity within and between nations, and due to its extractive nature, has degraded the natural world at unprecedented rates, threatening the sustainability of the earth’s life-support systems. The neoliberal commitment to corporate-dominated free markets, the treatment of nature as a free market resource and the assumption that economic growth is the solution to the increasing levels of unemployment, income inequality, and even environmental degradation, have been widely criticized by individuals, communities and organizations across the world. While some opponents call for a transformation of global institutions of governance and the harmonization of rules across nations, others call for more radical changes, seizing this moment as an opportunity to try new ideas and experiment with alternative economic systems aimed at reclaiming the power to control local and regional economies, secure rights to food, water, land, and healthy environments, build resilience, restore value systems and ultimately improve the quality of life.

This course will explore the ideas behind, and actions toward (some of) these alternatives. It will have two components: one theoretical and one experiential. The first component will provide a comprehensive overview of the worldviews that brought the system forward, and the theoretical end empirical arguments behind its critics. Theoretical and practical principles needed to build an alternative economic system consistent with just and resilient sustainable societies – and its challenges - will follow. Finally,discussions will focus on the analysis of experiments and initiatives that are taking place in different parts of the world. The experiential component will consist of an urban field project based on a neighborhood of New York City. Students will have the opportunity to interact with a NYC organization working on alternatives and develop a proposal that could be implemented as a means to further the way into the principles discussed in the first part of the course.

SCAI-UF 401.004 | MW 12:30-1:45 | Jim McBride

Comparative Global Legal Traditions

This seminar will provide students a comparative approach to historical and operational perspectives on the dominant legal systems worldwide, including the Anglo-American common law tradition, the continental civil law tradition, the religious law (Shari’ah) tradition, and the socialist tradition.  Particular attention will be paid to courtroom proceedings such as motion practice, the role of the judge, stare decisis, jury selection and bifurcation, and the sentencing process in different countries, using videos, podcasts, legal documents, and law review articles.  In addition to studying primary texts on constitutional frameworks, statutory regimes, judicial procedures, and the rule of law in the United States, France, Saudi Arabia, Iran, and the People’s Republic of China, students will have the opportunity to focus on key issues and events, including the Boston Marathon Bombing Trial, the Muslim headscarf controversy in France, the American constitutional right to abortion, Islamic family law on marriage and divorce, and the anti-bribery campaign of the Communist Party in contemporary China.

SCAI-UF 401.005 | MW 3:30-4:45 | Roberta Newman

Advertising: Selling to the Global Village

In 1964, Marshall McLuhan posited the idea that the world was fast becoming a “global village,” writing that “we have extended our central nervous system in a global embrace, abolishing both space and time as far as our planet is concerned.” At the time, these statements seemed futuristic. Today, we read them as prophetic. Indeed, in this age of new media, it is difficult to deny the fact that we are all linked, in virtually real time, in what is quite literally a world wide web. It is also difficult to ignore that central to the global village is its marketplace Indeed, one of primary uses of media, both new and old, is to sell things. To a great extent, both the things we are sold and the ways in which they are sold to us reflect the ways in which we live: our cultures, both local and global. And not only does advertising—the art and business of selling—reflect culture, it also creates it. In this seminar, we will examine global advertising both as a reflector and creator of culture. Focusing on content and context, we will explore the ways in which advertising functions within the global village, on a number of different levels. Over the course of the semester, we will utilize concepts and techniques from the fields of media studies, art history, anthropology, sociology, psychology and marketing as well as our own first-hand observation and anecdotal evidence, gathered in New York, abroad sites, and home towns and countries, as tools to help with our in-depth study of advertising. We will begin the semester with an examination of theoretical works, followed by a historic overview of the development of the business and art of advertising. Specifically, we will look at the ways in which global advertising functions as a unifier and as a divider. In order to do so, we will examine the marketing of global brands such as Coca Cola, Subaru, and New York University, to understand how advertising responds to cultural differences at the same time in promotes homogeneity. We will also pay some attention to the way in which ethnic and national identities may be informed, at least in part, by the world of advertising.


Social Foundations I

SFI-UF 101.101 | TR 11:00-12:15 | Heidi White

Justice, Happiness, and the Good Life
This course focuses on some of the classic texts of the ancient world and of the early Middle Ages—such as those of ancient India, classical China, the Judaic tradition, ancient Greece, and ancient Rome. We will explore the ways that Indian, Hebrew, Chinese, Greek, and Roman philosophers and theologians have envisioned the self in relation to questions of metaphysics,
ethics, and political theory. Keeping their historical context in mind, we will focus on philosophical issues that arise during the period, such as the nature of justice, the authority of the state over the individual, the relation of religion to morality, the quality of the good life, and fundamental ethical principles. Authors and texts may include the Book of Job,
Tao Te Ching,
Dhammapada, Sun Tzu’s Art of War, Plato’s Apology and Republic, Aristotle’s Nicomachean
Ethics
, the Gospel according to Matthew, Marcus Aurelius’s Meditations, and St. Augustine’s
Confessions.

SFI-UF 101.102 | TR 12:30-1:45 | Michael Shenefelt

The Ancient World
This course uses classic texts to survey the moral and political thought of ancient times. We seek to discover a common humanity as expressed through four different literary traditions—those of ancient Greece, the Bible, classical China, and ancient Rome. Historical topics include the rise and fall of the Greek city-states, the development of classical Greek philosophy, the intellectual ferment of China before its unification, the imperial expansion of Rome, the rise of Christianity, and the dissolution of Roman authority during the early Middle Ages. We also consider philosophical issues that arise during the period, such as the proper exercise of political power, the authority of the state over the individual, the relation of religion to morality, the good life, rationality and knowledge, free will, the relation of mind and body, fundamental ethical principles, and the effects of political freedom. The course asks students to examine these issues critically. Class discussion will be crucial.

SFI-UF 101.103 | MW 11:00-12:15 | Laura Samponaro

The Ancient World and Its Influence Today

“Equality is most unequal,” Cicero asserted in the first century B.C.E. What do concepts like equality, freedom, and justice mean to the ancients and to us today? How do the socio-political views of the ancient Greeks and Romans continue to influence us? In this course, we shall examine how the political, social, and ethical ideas of the ancients have impacted our own respective, current points of view. The goal of this course is not only to introduce you to texts that have shaped the way we think but also for you to study them as a means for constructing your own arguments, both in speech and in writing.  While adopting an attitude of critical engagement towards texts and ideas, you will examine not only what a particular argument is but also how that argument is presented.  In turn you will learn how to develop your own arguments and present them in a clear and persuasive fashion.

SFI-UF 101.104 | TR 3:30-4:45 | Joseph Portanova

Course Description TBA


Social Foundations III

In addition to the Advanced Writing Studio and Global Topics courses listed on this document, students have the option to take Cultural Foundations III or Social Foundations III to satisfy the GLS Upper Division Elective requirement. Please note that these courses include both GLS and Liberal Studies Core Program students.

Social Foundations III course descriptions can be found here.