395H Seminars, Summer, Fall 2018

Summer 2018

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.

Resistance Theater of WWII


No.: **** Section: 301 1:00-2:25p, MTWRF
2109 NRC Dr. Sarah Imes-Borden ACE 7 or 9

Course description

In this class, we will talk about people who were brave enough to perform pieces of theater as social protest, political action, or artistic expression at odds with dominant politics. They did so knowing that under the rules of the third Reich, it might get them and/or their loved ones killed. What does it take to decide that telling your truth for posterity is more important than your life itself?

Fall 2018

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.

How Did We Get Here? From the Enlightenment to Donald Trump


No.: **** Section: 001 1:15-3:15p, T
Neihardt 2103 Dr. Tim Borstelman ACE 5; ASC CDR C or F

Course description

This course will provide a one-semester overview of the historical development of the contemporary United States. We will first explore the pre-history of the country, focusing on the Enlightenment, the Protestant Reformation, European colonialism, the African slave trade, and the American Revolution. Next we will examine the creation of the powerful modern American state, digging into the processes of continental expansion, industrialization, immigration and the two World Wars. Finally, we will wrestle with key contemporary challenges, most notably the Cold War, struggles for social justice, globalization, climate change, and technological innovation. Students will write three brief papers, co-lead one week's discussion, and give an oral presentation on a research topic of their choice. This seminar offers an opportunity to examine the most important historical themes and issues of the past 500 years-a foundation for an educated citizen.

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


No.: **** Section: 004 12:30-1:45p, Tu/Th
Neihardt 2109 Dr. Tyler White ACE 6 or 9; ASC CDR D or F

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.

Making a Noise: Rock & Roll in Native American Culture


No.: **** Section: 005 3:30-5:30p, Th
Neihardt 2109 Dr. Scott Anderson ACE 7 or 9

Course description

The course will explore and analyze the music of Native Americans. The course will focus primarily on the artistic innovation of the Native American culture including the music, lyrics, and their social implications. The political and cultural backdrop will be addressed as part of the exploration of the evolution of Native Music. Through discussion, research, analysis, and creative work, students will explore the place and influence of Native music in the history of American popular music. The course will follow a chronological examination of Native culture beginning with the Trail of Tears and including both Wounded Knee Incidents. Each class will concentrate on a central question relating to issues in the Native community and how they are addressed in popular music.

Fantastic Journeys


No.: **** Section: 007 1:30-4:40p, W
Andrews 118 Dr. Pascha Stevenson ACE 5; ASC CDR C or F

Course description

Into the forest, over the mountains, through the clouds-literary journeys take us far and wide. They document the human quest to discover the unknown, to conquer dread and forge hard won paths through the mist and darkness, often for reasons as intricate as the journeys themselves. Certainly the journey can also be metaphorical-we speak of journeys of self-discovery or healing-but in this class we'll explore novels that foremost involve a trek, an expedition, physical movement toward and away from something. And we'll pay special attention to the archetypal elements that make up such journeys. A likely reading list includes: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, The Mouse and His Child, Watership Down, On Such a Full Sea, Parable of the Sower, and Station Eleven.

The Physiology of Stress


No.: **** Section: 008 9:30-10:45a, Tu/Th
Manter 409 Dr. Gwen Bachman ACE 4; ASC CDR F

Course description

Despite our preconceptions, stress is not necessarily bad. In fact, the stress response is adaptive! The response helps us escape dangerous situations, avoid these situations in the future, and includes a recovery phase that returns us to homeostatic balance after the emergency response. The physiological stress response is particularly interesting because the same response is activated by physical stressors (injury, disease) as well as psychological stressors. Unfortunately, humans are particularly good at activating the stress response for psychological stressors when it is inappropriate. For example, your homework assignment may be a source of incredible stress, but getting up and running away from this stressor isn't going to solve the problem! We live in a society that causes some of us to frequently activate the stress response and sustain the response for un-naturally long periods of time. Under these conditions, the stress response is not adaptive, and as a result, we see devastating effects of stress that can last for generations. In this course, we will explore the physiological effects of stress as well as the psychological and physiological triggers.

Pre-requisites: None! But some background in physiology helps.


  • The foundational text for this course is Robert Sapolsky's classic book: "Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers".
  • The class is heavily discussion based with specific topics chosen by student presenters.
  • The workload will be distributed such that each class meeting, all students will provide either oral answers or written answers to questions. Both will be graded. Additionally, each student will sign up to present at least once per semester.
    • Approximately half of the class meetings will begin with a student presentation covering readings selected by the student which will usually include a chapter from Sapolsky and one paper from a scientific journal.
    • A set of students will be charged with presenting oral answers to questions provided by the presenter.
    • On days with no prearranged student presentation Dr. Bachman will lead a discussion on a paper related to the topics for the week, with a set of students charged with presenting oral answers to questions provided.
    • Students not selected to provide oral answers for a given day will be expected to provide brief written answers.
  • The course requires small but constant attention on your part (in place of a single large assignment) to allow you to be fully immersed in the topic and cement the information into longterm memory. This also ensures an engaged audience during our discussions. This is a fun class to be a part of, and I hope you join me!

Legendary Women Writers: Their Lives, Literature, and Legacies


No.: **** Section: 009 11:00-12:15p, T/Th
Andrews 111 Dr. Bev Rilett ACE 5; ASC CDR C or F

Course description

George Eliot, Virginia Woolf, and Sylvia Plath are three women writers as famous for their lives as for their literature. Stories of their irregular, complicated marriages and sudden deaths have established a kind of mythology around these women that continues to be contested by new biographical revelations and re-creations, such as the biofiction The Honeymoon (about Eliot), and the films The Hours (about Woolf) and Sylvia (about Plath). In this course, we will examine several contrasting biographical representations of these women in conjunction with their autobiographical writings. In addition to the above-mentioned films and novel, our texts will include Eliot's Janet's Repentance, Woolf's To the Lighthouse and Moments of Being, and Plath's The Bell Jar and the poetry collection, Ariel. If you are interested in learning more about the lives behind three of the most renowned women writers of western literature, this course is for you!

Living with Our Changing Climate


No.: **** Section: 010 2:00-4:00, R
Neihardt 1105 Dr. Kenneth Dewey ACE 4 or 8; ASC CDR B or F

Course description

This course reveals the impact that each of us has on the climate. With this understanding, comes choices and actions for a more sustainable future.

Earth’s climate is inherently variable, but is currently changing at rates unprecedented in recent Earth history. Human activity plays a major role in this change and is projected to do so well into the future. By incorporating the latest science, this course elaborates on this human interaction with the climate system along with how climate variations affect humanity. The primary issues examined in this course include the human and ecosystem vulnerabilities to climate change; the role of energy choices in affecting climate; the actions humans can take through adaptation, mitigation, and policy to lessen vulnerabilities and, the psychological and financial reasons behind climate change denial.

The course will use an e-textbook that provides Key Terms, Review as well as Critical Thinking Questions. Outside resources are included in the e-textbook along with Internet Resources that will direct the student to the Scientific Literature that cites the expertise that scientists drew their conclusions from. The For Further Explorations address specific concepts within the chapter, while throughout the chapter the Topics in Depth lead to more extensive information. Students will also collect and analyze climate data from the UNL Climate Center to look at the geography of climate change and to test climate change scientific hypotheses. In-class discussion will be an important aspect of this course as the students learn how to debate the relevant issues, frame scientific arguments and learn to work as a group toward common goals.