395H Seminars

Summer 2017

The following 395H seminars are 3 credit hour classes. ACE credit is noted by each course. Some courses also meet College of Arts & Sciences College Distribution Requirements (ASC CDR); specifics are noted with each course. Enrollment in these courses will follow regular University enrollment procedures and occur on a first-come, first-served basis in accordance with your assigned priority registration times. If this is your final semester and you have an unmet ACE need AND you have difficulties getting into a course section with that ACE, contact Dr. Burnett ASAP.

Quality TV: From Buffy to Breaking Bad 

UHON 395H (ENGLISH)

No.:  6428 Section: 501 9:00-10:20a, M-F
1105 NRC Burnett

ACE 5 or 7

ASC CDR C

Course description

In this course, we will learn about and apply theories of the critical category of “quality television” in order to reach an understanding about how various production and narrative elements can contribute to the artistic quality of a scripted television show. Using the television show with the largest body of critical scholarship, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, as a point of comparison, we will examine exemplar episodes from several television series that scholars agree qualify as “quality TV” in order to develop an understanding of this visual media art form and critical approaches to it. We will explore a variety of shows from disparate genres including, The X-Files, The Sopranos, The West Wing, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, and Sherlock. Required course materials include subscriptions to Netflix and HBO Go Now.

Fall 2017-18

The following 395H seminars are 3 credit hour classes. ACE credit is noted by each course. Some courses also meet College of Arts & Sciences College Distribution Requirements (ASC CDR); specifics are noted with each course. Enrollment in these courses will follow regular University enrollment procedures and occur on a first-come, first-served basis in accordance with your assigned priority registration times. If this is your final semester and you have an unmet ACE need AND you have difficulties getting into a course section with that ACE, contact Dr. Burnett ASAP.

America & the World

UHON 395H (history)

No.:  9612 Section: 001 1:00-3:00p, Tu
2103 NRC Borstelmann

ACE 5 or 9

ASC CDR C

Course description

How have Americans encountered and understood the rest of the world? How has the United States helped shape modern world history, and how have other nations and other peoples impacted the United States? This seminar will address these questions, beginning from the late 18th century but focusing particularly on the 20th century. Readings will cover issues of foreign policy, immigration, empire, popular culture, war, ideology, and economics. Students will write a research paper and will help team-teach one of the weekly discussions.

Economic Inequality in the United States and Around the World

UHON 395H (AGRICULTURAL ECONOMICS)

No.: 9613 Section: 002 2:00-4:30p, W
2109 NRC Peterson ACE 6 or 9

Course description

While social scientists have long been interested in the issue of economic inequality, it has only recently resurfaced in popular discussions. Current interest in inequality in the United States has been stimulated by the “Occupy Wall Street” movement and the recognition that most of the income gains of the past three decades have been captured by the very rich (the top 1 percent). The global recession has also raised concern about international inequality and the plight of the approximately 2 billion people worldwide who are poor and hungry. The seminar will be organized around several recent publications on economic inequality in the United States and in other parts of the world. Readings and discussions will cover issues related to the measurement of inequality, the connection between inequality and poverty, some historical and philosophical debates about egalitarianism, and recent arguments about the social and economic impact of inequality.

Adventure Movies

UHON 395H (THEATRE)

No.: 9631 Section: 003 7:00-10:00p, M
104 TEMP Grange

ACE 7

Course description

Adventure movies have been around since the beginning of movies, from "20,00 Leagues Under the Sea" in 1917 to "Mutiny in the Bounty" in 1935, from "Mogambo" in 1953 to the "Indiana Jones" series in the 1980s to "The Life of Pi" in 2012. And everything else in between. This seminar will explore 14 adventure films, full of swashbuckling heroes, maidens in distress, villainous Nazis, sandstorms in deserts, quicksand in swamps, crocodiles in rivers, tigers in jungles, and spine-tingling thrills for everyone.

"You MAD Bro?":  Mutually Assured Destruction, Deterrence and Assurance:  The Politics of Nuclear Weapons

UHON 395H (political science)

No.: 9636 Section: 004 12:30-1:45p, MW
2109 NRC White

ACE 6 or 9

ASC CDR D

Course description

The nuclear weapons enterprise is unique in that it appears to be the only human endeavor that, if used, could wipe every living thing off the face of the earth. Yet nuclear weapons themselves and the doctrine that dictate their use have been credited with the dramatic drop in interstate war since 1945. States with nuclear weapons demand an unparalleled level of respect, yet obtaining and maintaining a nuclear arsenal is expensive and hazardous. Why do states seek nuclear weapons? What role do they play in the maintenance of international peace and security? Are they an effective tool or war or diplomacy? And should states have them at all? This course will dig into the history of the nuclear arms race and dissect the theories of deterrence, assurance, and mutually assured destruction. We will learn by reading, discussing, and participating in simulations.

Pink Floyd and the Concept Album: From Meddle to The Final Cut

UHON 395H (music)

No.: 9686 Section: 005 3:30-5:30p, Th
1105 NRC Anderson

ACE 7

Course description

Beginning with its first incarnation as a psychedelic band from Cambridge, UK, Pink Floyd evolved into the standard bearer for the concept album in rock music. The course is an examination not only of the band and their influence on pop music, but also a study on the genre of the concept album. The course will span a specific part of Pink Floyd’s career from Meddle (1971) through the last album with the original lineup that became The Final Cut (1985). The class will be divided into two sections. The first section will approach their output thematically and trace the writing and engagement with American Popular Music, anti-authoritarianism, religion, politics and fame. The second section of the course will analyze the band’s landmark albums to examine the artistry behind their studio accomplishments including Meddle, The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here, Animals, The Wall and The Final Cut.

The History of Anticolonialism

UHON 395H (HISTORY)

No.:  9692 Section: 006 3:00-6:00p, TU
2103 NRC Le Sueur

ACE 5 or 9

ASC CDR C

Course description

This course examines the intellectual, cultural, and political histories of efforts to achieve national liberation throughout the twentieth century. Key figures to be studied include Mahatma K. Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Mohammad Mosaddegh, Gamal Abdel Nasser, Sukarno, Frantz Fanon, Fidal Castro, Ho Chi Minh, Albert Camus, Winston Churchill, Charles de Gaulle, Nelson Mandela, among many others. The course begins with fin-de-siècle anticolonial activists/writers and compares these thinkers and activists against their pro-Empire European counterparts. Among those countries seeking independence to be studied in detail are: India, Indonesia, Cuba, Iran, Vietnam/Indochina, Algeria, South Africa, Rhodesia, and etc. As a readings-based seminar, the course begins in the early 1900s and follows the progression of anticolonial revolutionary nationalist movements through the end of apartheid in South Africa and the election of Nelson Mandela in 1994.

(In)Famous Orphans, Witches, and Warriors of Children’s Literature

UHON 395H (ENGLISH)

No.:  9693 Section: 007 1:30-4:20, W
118 ANDR Stevenson

ACE 5

ASC CDR C

Course description

From fairy tales to contemporary YA novels, children’s literature has always been populated by three basic archetypes: orphans, witches (or wizards), and warriors. Why is this? We’ll explore this compelling question as we read critical theory as well as a wide range of texts in children’s and YA literature. Grimm’s fairy tales will mark the beginning of our journey. Along the way, we’ll read 19th century works such as “The New Mother” (perhaps the creepiest children’s story ever written!) and ultimately spend the majority of our time studying contemporary treatments of these classic archetypes. The list will include: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Cinder, The BFG, The Hunger Games, and The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, among others.

Regulation of the Global Human Population

UHON 395H (biologIcaL sciences)

No.: 33105 Section: 008 2:30-5:20, M
409 MANT DeLong

ACE 6 or 9

Course description

This seminar is designed to foster an understanding of the processes driving changes in the size and age distribution of the global human population. We will strive to understand how predictions about the future size of the global human population are made and how biological, social, geographic, and economic factors combine to influence fertility, mortality, and migration of humans. We will look at historical patterns and processes of migration and population dynamics, cover the demographic transition and questions about its permanence, the role of economic development and energy in fertility and mortality patterns, and how the number of people on the planet might influence the way socio-economic system works.

As we go through these topics, we will learn about fundamental concepts from demography (e.g., life tables), biology (e.g., life history and population dynamics), sociology (e.g., cultural norms), and economics (e.g., development and tragedy of the commons). We will consider the globe as a complex system that must be fueled by energy use and ask how that energy use influences the processes that regulate the human population. Assignments will include weekly readings from the primary literature. Exercises will include making life tables for humans, calculating growth rates, and projecting/forecasting future population size.