This course examines Palestinian and Israeli history to better understand how culture, identity, and conflict impact their relationships. Students will deepen ability to detect bias, learn consequences of opposing narratives, and cultivate knowledge of and respect for both peoples. We study religious, social, ethnic, and nationalistic aspects of Palestinian, Arab, Israeli, Jewish, Muslim, and Christian identities. What role does religion play in a conflict between two predominantly secular peoples? What power imbalances and inequalities exist not only between these peoples but also within each side? What are the obstacles to and possibilities for peace? Through reading, research, writing, video, and music, students cultivate an appreciation of the struggles, strengths, and legitimate needs of both peoples.
This course examines the development of human rights theories and practices, early efforts at an international response and the creation of a modern human rights agenda after 1945. Students explore race, ethnicity, and gender as human rights issues and examine the issue of humanitarian intervention in Bosnia, Rwanda, and Darfur. In addition, students examine globalization, terrorism, and the role of the United States in the current human rights debate.
The 20th century, often referred to as The American Century, was a time of turbulent transformation in which Americans were forced to rethink their political ideals, their commitment to social justice, and their definitions of art and culture. In this course, students focus on the big ideas in American culture that shaped the nation's history from the roaring '20s to the radical '60s. Students examine American music within the context of US history, studying folk music and the labor movement, modernism and jazz, and student activism and rock.
Students will read and discuss articles by respected scholars and commentators on critical issues facing the world today. Discussions will focus on topics of historic significance in the last quarter of the 20th century. Note: This course may be used to fulfill the social science requirement.
The meaning of one's sexual identity has changed dramatically from one period of history to another, and from one culture to another. This course examines the changing roles of men and women and their power relationships throughout history. By studying gender in religion, politics, family, and the arts, students gain perspectives on their own roles and relations. Note: This course may be used to fulfill the social science requirement.
This course focuses on defining different types of cultural or mythical models for society and individuals; how they are formed; how they help shape beliefs, worldviews, and historical events; and how they still inform our lives today. The thematic approach of mythology and folklore will draw on documents from the fields of history (especially the timeframe from Ancient Greece to the late Middle Ages), linguistics, law, music, theatre, literature, art, and film.