This course, designed especially for first-year students, explores an innovative or timely issue in anthropology. Anthropological perspectives and ways of knowing are used to study a particular topic in depth. Ethical and comparative dimensions to the issue will be examined. Topics might include: Culture and Morality, Women and Work, Culture and Medicine, Human Rights and Cultural Survival, and Culture and Violence. Seminars are small and emphasize writing and class discussion. Prerequisite: first-year students only.
|First-year students only||1 course|
This course, designed especially for first-year students, explores an innovative or timely issue in sociology. Sociological perspectives and ways of knowing are used to study a particular topic in depth. Ethical, historical and sometimes comparative dimensions to the issue will be examined. Topics may include: Popular Culture in the U.S., Culture Wars in American Society, Dilemmas in Health Care, and Justice and Society. Seminars are small and emphasize writing and class discussion. First-year students only.
Fall Semester informationMona Bhan
197AA: FYS: Cultures and Climate
Weather is often a filler in conversations when there is nothing much to be said or when there is an awkward silence and people turn to discussing how cold or hot it is or how the snow, winds, and/or the rains might have disrupted their plans for a family vacation. I am sure we have all experienced this. Increasingly, however, weather-related conversations have become pretty heated. In this course, we ask why might this be the case. How is it that weather and climate have become highly controversial issues, taken up by policy makers and scientists who claim that human-induced changes to the climate (also called anthropogenic changes) have jeopardized the planet or the longevity of its human and nonhuman species. The relentless use of fossil-fuels by humans is believed to be one of the primary causes behind the rise in average global temperatures, a transformation that is spelling havoc for many of the earth's inhabitants as well as for its animals, oceans, and glaciers. This course will help us understand how we got to this point and what might be the way out? We don't usually think of weather and climate as "political" issues but the course will emphasize why and how these are indeed "political" categories, which means that we will explore how weather and climate structure global politics or can also potentially trigger inter-state wars and violence. At the same time, we will also analyze how and why it is the poorer and most marginal populations who are often the most visibly impacted by climate change. We will also explore the complex intersections between culture and climate, focusing on the ways in which climate and climate related anxieties appeared in ancient philosophical texts to the ways these now appear in newer genres of writing called cli-fi novels and films.