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IDSEM-UG1229 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
FA 2010

"Chinatown" and the American Imagination

4 units Wed
2:00 PM - 4:45 PM
Jack Tchen

Description

What is a “Chinatown”? The word alone evokes many images, sounds, smells, tastes from many different sensibilities. For recent immigrants it can be a home away from home, for “outsiders” an exotic place for cheap eats, for male action flic fans Chow Yun Fat (or Mark Walhberg) in “The Corruptor,” and for you ?!? (fill in the blank). We’re going to explore the nooks and crannies of Chinatown in the American imagination and in its New York real-time, non-virtual existence. How do we know what we know and do not know? What does Chinatown have to do with the formation of normative “American” identities? What are the possibilities (and limits) of crossing cultural divides? Class members will individually and/or in groups research, experience, and document a chain of persons, places, and/or events creating their own narrative “tour” of this place’s meanings. Novels, history books, tourist guides, films, and pop culture will supplement the primary “text” of New York Chinatown. This will be a collaborative, discussion-intensive, field research-driven class.

Notes

Same as V18.0370.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1229 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
GLOBAL
FA 2014

"Chinatown" and the American Imagination

4 units Mon
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM Wed
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
Jack Tchen

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1229

Description

What is a “Chinatown”? The word alone evokes many images, sounds, smells, tastes from many different sensibilities. For recent immigrants it can be a home away from home, for “outsiders” an exotic place for cheap eats, for male action flic fans Chow Yun Fat (or Mark Walhberg) in “The Corruptor,” and for you ?!? (fill in the blank). We’re going to explore the nooks and crannies of Chinatown in the American imagination and in its New York real-time, non-virtual existence. How do we know what we know and do not know? What does Chinatown have to do with the formation of normative “American” identities? What are the possibilities (and limits) of crossing cultural divides? Class members will individually and/or in groups research, experience, and document a chain of persons, places, and/or events creating their own narrative “tour” of this place’s meanings. Novels, history books, tourist guides, films, and pop culture will supplement the primary “text” of New York Chinatown. This will be a collaborative, discussion-intensive, field research-driven class.

Notes

Same as SCA-UA 370 001. Please note there ia a required lab session on Wed, 12:30-1:45.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1826 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2016

(Dis)Placed Urban Histories

4 units Fri
2:00 PM - 4:45 PM
Rebecca Amato

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1826

Description

According to the vacation rental site, Airbnb, Brooklyn’s “ultra-trendy” Williamsburg neighborhood is “New York City’s top spot for looking awesome” and can be credited with being one of the borough’s “first neighborhoods to create collector’s items out of defunct warehouses.” Until recently, such descriptions were assumed to be about the northern section of Williamsburg, where boutiques and chic restaurants, galleries, lofts, and artisanal markets abound. Now, as the  New York Post  notes, the formerly “scruffy” and “barren” South Williamsburg is also “growing up” as LEED-certified luxury construction and trendy restaurants materialize there as well. This language of encroaching gentrification, though relatively new to both North and South Williamsburg, has a longer history, having been applied to Manhattan’s Greenwich Village, East Village, and Soho neighborhoods decades before. Yet while twenty-somethings pour into South Williamsburg, many question their role in displacing long-term residents, small businesses, and local traditions with a homogenizing “hipster” culture. This course invites students to become historical activists whose objective is to learn who and what is being displaced by gentrification and what the historical processes are that have aided this change. Students will conduct archival and secondary research; produce collaborative oral histories with neighborhood residents and business owners; and meet with activists who are working to stem the tide of gentrification. The course will culminate in an on-line archive and a physical exhibit to be co-produced with neighborhood residents and displayed at El Museo de Los Sures in South Williamsburg.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1826 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2017

(Dis)Placed Urban Histories

4 units Fri
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Rebecca Amato

Description

Neighborhood change comes in many varieties. Mid-twentieth century urban renewal in U.S. cities brought bulldozers and tower-in-the-park housing developments to dozens of poor neighborhoods considered ripe for revision. Early-twenty-first century gentrification, meanwhile, has brought high-end commerce and affluence to areas once occupied by low-income and working class communities. In the Melrose section of the South Bronx, a series of changes have influenced the streetscapes and lives of residents. Rampant arson in the 1970s and 1980s destroyed acres of the neighborhood, for example, while migrants from Puerto Rico and immigrants from the Dominican Republic, West Africa, and Bangladesh, among others, settled in the remaining homes of Melrose to build new lives in a new city. Most recently, federal dollars have been earmarked for Melrose’s reconstruction and redevelopment. This course, offered in partnership with the Bronx-based community empowerment organization WHEDCo, invites students to become activist historians whose objective is to learn what histories are at risk of being silenced or displaced as the South Bronx changes. Students will conduct archival and secondary research; produce collaborative oral histories with neighborhood residents and business owners; and meet with activists who are working to protect the interests of the current community of Melrose. The course will culminate in an on-line archive and a physical, history-based exhibit to be co-produced with neighborhood residents and displayed in a publicly accessible, outdoor park. Readings may include Jonathan Mahler’s  Ladies and Gentlemen the Bronx is Burning  and Jill Jonnes’s  South Bronx Rising .

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1826 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2015

(Dis)Placing Urban Histories

4 units
Section 025
Fri
2:00 PM - 4:45 PM

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1826

Description

According to the vacation rental site, Airbnb, Brooklyn’s Bushwick neighborhood is “quickly ascending the ranks when it comes to creative-minded destinations and hotspots for self-expression.” Only five years ago, as Douglas Elliman Real Estate describes Bushwick, “a parent would cringe if they saw where their children were living,” but today, “this industrial neighborhood full of street grit thrives with twenty-somethings.” This language of creativity-driven gentrification, though new to Bushwick, has a longer history, having been applied to the area’s neighbor Williamsburg more than a decade before and to Manhattan’s East Village and Soho neighborhoods even earlier. Yet while twenty-somethings pour into Williamsburg and Bushwick, many question their role in displacing long-term residents, small businesses, and local traditions with a homogenizing “hipster” culture. This course invites students to become historical activists whose objective is to learn who and what is being displaced by gentrification and what the historical processes are that have aided this change. Students will conduct archival and secondary research; interview neighborhood residents and business owners; and meet with activists who are working to stem the tide of gentrification. The course will culminate in a collaborative exhibit to be shown at El Museo de Los Sures in South Williamsburg.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1723 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
GLOBAL
FA 2012

(Dis)inheriting Power: Literature and the Legacies of Colonialism

4 units Tue Thu
4:55 PM - 6:10 PM
Laurie R. Lambert

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1723

Description

This course investigates colonialism and its cultural legacies. We will examine texts situated in a variety of international locations including Nigeria, South Africa, Zimbabwe, India, China, New Zealand, Australia, Jamaica, and the U.S. Students will have the opportunity to think about how colonial power has shaped both the way we see the world and the way we read literature today. Tackling issues pertaining to gender and sexuality, slavery and memory, religion and cultural identity, and space and privilege, we will probe the various relationships to power that postcolonial writers inhabit. What are the tensions that arise between the First and Third Worlds, between the North and the South, and the East and the West? How and why were these geographic distinctions invented? Readings to include E.M. Forster’s A Passage to India , Jean Rhys’ Wide Sargasso Sea , Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children , and J.M. Coetzee’s Disgrace .

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1181 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2013

A Sense of Place

4 units Tue Thu
2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
Steve Hutkins

Description

This course examines the places in which we work and play, travel and dwell - the office tower and the suburban house, the city street and the superhighway, the small town and the megalopolis, the shopping mall and the theme park, the American road and foreign places. Synthesizing insights from literary works and fields like cultural geography, landscape studies, and architectural history, we explore such questions as: What gives a place its particular feel or character? How do our values and worldview affect the way we experience places, and what constitutes that experience? How do places---and the way they are represented in literature and other media---shape our attitudes and behavior? What gives a place "quality," and how can we design and build better places? Readings may include J. B. Jackson’s Landscape in Sight , Yi-Fu Tuan’s Space and Place , James Kunstler’s The Geography of Nowhere , D. J. Waldie’s Holy Land , Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities , and Michael Sorkin’s Twenty Minutes in Manhattan .

Notes

Section 3 for Environmental Studies majors only.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1181 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2011

A Sense of Place

4 units Tue Thu
2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
Steve Hutkins

Description

This course examines the places in which we work and play, travel and dwell - the office tower and the suburban house, the city street and the superhighway, the small town and the megalopolis, the shopping mall and the theme park, the American road and foreign places. Synthesizing insights from literary works and fields like cultural geography, landscape studies, and architectural history, we explore such questions as: What gives a place its particular feel or character? How do our values and worldview affect the way we experience places, and what constitutes that experience? How do places---and the way they are represented in literature and other media---shape our attitudes and behavior? What gives a place "quality," and how can we design and build better places? Readings may include J. B. Jackson’s Landscape in Sight , Yi-Fu Tuan’s Space and Place , James Kunstler’s The Geography of Nowhere , D. J. Waldie’s Holy Land , Italo Calvino’s I nvisible Cities , and Michael Sorkin’s Twenty Minutes in Manhattan .

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1781 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2014

A Sense of Place

2 units Tue Thu
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Steve Hutkins

Description

This course examines the places in which we work and play, travel and dwell—the office tower and the suburban house, the city street and the superhighway, the small town and the megalopolis, the shopping mall and the theme park, the American road and foreign places. Synthesizing insights from literary works and fields like cultural geography, landscape studies, and architectural history, we explore such questions as: What gives a place its particular feel or character? How do our values and worldview affect the way we experience places, and what constitutes that experience? How do places—and the way they are represented in literature and other media—shape our attitudes and behavior? What gives a place "quality," and how can we design and build better places? Readings may include J. B. Jackson’s Landscape in Sight , Yi-Fu Tuan’s Space and Place , James Kunstler’s The Geography of Nowhere , D. J. Waldie’s Holy Land , Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities , and Michael Sorkin’s Twenty Minutes in Manhattan .

Notes

Course meets during the last seven weeks only, First Class: March 25; Last Class: May 8.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1781 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2015

A Sense of Place

2 units Fri
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM
Steve Hutkins

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1781

Description

This course examines the places in which we work and play, travel and dwell—the office tower and the suburban house, the city street and the superhighway, the small town and the megalopolis, the shopping mall and the theme park, the American road and foreign places. Synthesizing insights from literary works and fields like cultural geography, landscape studies, and architectural history, we explore such questions as: What gives a place its particular feel or character? How do our values and worldview affect the way we experience places, and what constitutes that experience? How do places—and the way they are represented in literature and other media—shape our attitudes and behavior? What gives a place "quality," and how can we design and build better places? Readings may include J. B. Jackson’s Landscape in Sight , Yi-Fu Tuan’s Space and Place , James Kunstler’s The Geography of Nowhere , D. J. Waldie’s Holy Land , Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities , and Michael Sorkin’s Twenty Minutes in Manhattan .

Notes

Course meets during the first seven weeks only, First Class: January 30; Last Class: March 13.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1781 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2016

A Sense of Place

2 units Fri
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM
Steve Hutkins

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1781

Description

This course examines the places in which we work and play, travel and dwell—the office tower and the suburban house, the city street and the superhighway, the small town and the megalopolis, the shopping mall and the theme park, the American road and foreign places. Synthesizing insights from literary works and fields like cultural geography, landscape studies, and architectural history, we explore such questions as: What gives a place its particular feel or character? How do our values and worldview affect the way we experience places, and what constitutes that experience? How do places—and the way they are represented in literature and other media—shape our attitudes and behavior? What gives a place "quality," and how can we design and build better places? Readings may include J. B. Jackson’s  Landscape in Sight , Yi-Fu Tuan’s  Space and Place , James Kunstler’s  The Geography of Nowhere , D. J. Waldie’s  Holy Land , Italo Calvino’s  Invisible Cities , and Michael Sorkin’s  Twenty Minutes in Manhattan .

Notes

Course meets during the first seven weeks only, First Class: January 29; Last Class: March 11.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1781 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2017

A Sense of Place

2 units Fri
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM
Steve Hutkins

Description

This course examines the places in which we work and play, travel and dwell—the office tower and the suburban house, the city street and the superhighway, the small town and the megalopolis, the shopping mall and the theme park, the American road and foreign places. Synthesizing insights from literary works and fields like cultural geography, landscape studies, and architectural history, we explore such questions as: What gives a place its particular feel or character? How do our values and worldview affect the way we experience places, and what constitutes that experience? How do places—and the way they are represented in literature and other media—shape our attitudes and behavior? What gives a place "quality," and how can we design and build better places? Readings may include J. B. Jackson’s  Landscape in Sight , Yi-Fu Tuan’s  Space and Place , James Kunstler’s  The Geography of Nowhere , D. J. Waldie’s  Holy Land , Italo Calvino’s  Invisible Cities , and Michael Sorkin’s  Twenty Minutes in Manhattan .

Notes

Course meets during the first seven weeks only, First Class: January 27; Last Class: March 10.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1884 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
EARLY
FA 2016

Accessorizing the Renaissance: Manners, Taste, and Fashion in Early Modern Europe

4 units Tue Thu
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Bella Mirabella

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1884

Description

Many of the ideas that we in the West have about manners, good taste, style, and fashion originate in the Italian Renaissance, particularly with visual artists who portrayed the clothing of the time, and with writers who focused on the ideas of self-fashioning in the construction of a personal and public identity and the necessity of good manners and fine clothing in fostering the relationship one has with the social community. These ideas became crucially important throughout Europe, influenced in part by their trade within the Mediterranean Basin and the Middle East, and form the basis of contemporary attitudes on style, manners, and fashion. This class will explore these key ideas through the perspective of their impact on gender, status, power, identity, and the position of the other. We will read primary texts from the Renaissance about self-fashioning, good manners, and dress in Europe and non-European countries, literary texts that give us dramatic representations of the importance of decorous behavior and style as well as visual representations of attire from the period. Readings may be drawn from texts such as Baldesare Castiglione’s  Courtier , Giovanni della Casa’s , Galateo , Moderata Fonte’s  The Worth of Women , Shakespearean plays, such  as Othello , and  Twelfth Night , and contemporary essays and texts on fashion and dress such as James Laver’s , Costume and Fashion  and Susan Vincent’s  Dressing the Elite. 

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1277 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2013

Alchemy and the Transformation of Self

4 units Tue Thu
9:30 AM - 10:45 AM
Lee Robbins

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1277

Description

The focus of this course is the history of the human being’s need for the experience of transformation. We explore the etymology of the word ‘transformation’ and ask ourselves why humans have invoked the ecstasies and agonies of the process to explore the breadth and depth of the human psyche as it moves toward greater degrees of consciousness of self and world. We answer these questions by tracing the ancient science of alchemical transformation from its roots in the Stone Age, through the Eastern spiritual practices of China and India, into the embalming practices of ancient Egypt and the astrological symbol system of the Greeks, culminating in the work of C.G. Jung who discovered the ancient art of alchemy as the philosophical antecedent and language to his own transformational psychology, and so introducing the ancient art into the post modern world. Readings include: Eliade’s The Forge and the Crucible ; Edward Edinger’s Anatomy of the Psyche : Stan Marlan’s Black Sun ; Edinger’s Mystery of the Coniunctio and selections from The Alchemy Reader and Splendor Solis, together with readings from Freud, Winnicot, Jung and Hillman.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1277 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
FA 2011

Alchemy and the Transformation of Self

4 units Tue Thu
9:30 AM - 10:45 AM
Lee Robbins

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1277

Description

The focus of this course is the one relationship we sustain from birth to the grave and possibly beyond—the relationship to ourselves. The quality of our relationship to work, community and intimate others is deeply affected by the level of connection we have to parts of ourselves. In this course we explore the “middle ground of psychic realities” between ego and unconscious, soul and deity, male and female, spirit and body and finally self and other. The middle ground within the psyche is presented in historical perspective from Buddha through the ancient art of alchemy to the modern depth of psychologies of Freud, Jung and Winnicott. How does each of these traditions understand the psyche as the site of struggle and radical transformation? Students will have the opportunity to discover and experience the middle ground within themselves through the crafting of personal Alchemical rituals. Readings may include: Suttas from the Pali Canon, Eliade’s The Forge and the Crucible, Plato’s Symposium, Corbin’s Avicenna and the Visionary Recital, Bachelard’s Poetics of Space, Emerson’s “Self Reliance”, Edinger’s Anatomy o f t he Psyche and especially selections from CG Jung who rediscovered alchemy as the antecedent to his own psychology of the unconsciious and so introduced the ancient art of alchemy into the modern and postmodern world.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1572 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2010

America in the 1970s and 1980s: From Recession Blues to Free Market Frenzy

4 units Mon Wed
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
Kimberly Phillips-Fein

Description

The historical epoch starting in the early 1970s and stretching up to the present has been referred to as the "age of Reagan," the era of neoliberalism, and the decline of capitalism's Golden Age. This interdisciplinary history class will look at the 1970s and 1980s as decades that mark the beginning of many of the problems that we confront today: the rise of economic inequality; the origins of globalization; the first awareness of an "energy crisis;" the birth of social movements like feminism, gay rights, and black power; the deepening of urban poverty and the expansion of the criminal justice system; the ascendance of the stock market and financial deregulation; the transition to a service economy; the growth of new forms of art and music like hip-hop and punk; the rise of evangelical Christianity as a political force; the emergence of a conservative movement; the end of Soviet Communism. The class will ask students to consider how the social problems of the 1970s and 1980s anticipate those of the present day, and also how America today is different than in this earlier period. We will use political speeches, manifestos, poetry, film, and novels as well as works of historical scholarship in order to try to understand the period. Readings may include Garry Wills, George Gilder, Jerry Falwell, Kwame Ture, Tom Wolfe, Thomas Frank and Alice Echols.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1572 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2011

America in the 1970s and 1980s: From Recession Blues to Free Market Frenzy

4 units Mon Wed
2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
Kimberly Phillips-Fein

Description

The historical epoch starting in the early 1970s and stretching up to the present has been referred to as the "age of Reagan," the era of neoliberalism, and the decline of capitalism's Golden Age. This interdisciplinary history class will look at the 1970s and 1980s as decades that mark the beginning of many of the problems that we confront today: the rise of economic inequality; the origins of globalization; the first awareness of an "energy crisis;" the birth of social movements like feminism, gay rights, and black power; the deepening of urban poverty and the expansion of the criminal justice system; the ascendance of the stock market and financial deregulation; the transition to a service economy; the growth of new forms of art and music like hip-hop and punk; the rise of evangelical Christianity as a political force; the emergence of a conservative movement; the end of Soviet Communism. The class will ask students to consider how the social problems of the 1970s and 1980s anticipate those of the present day, and also how America today is different than in this earlier period. We will use political speeches, manifestos, poetry, film, and novels as well as works of historical scholarship in order to try to understand the period. Readings may include Garry Wills, George Gilder, Jerry Falwell, Kwame Ture, Tom Wolfe, Thomas Frank and Alice Echols.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1572 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2014

America in the 1970s and 1980s: From Recession Blues to Free Market Frenzy

4 units Wed
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM
Kimberly Phillips-Fein

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1572

Description

The historical epoch starting in the early 1970s and stretching up to the present has been referred to as the "age of Reagan," the era of neoliberalism, and the decline of capitalism's Golden Age. This interdisciplinary history class looks at the 1970s and 1980s as decades that mark the beginning of many of the problems that we confront today: the rise of economic inequality; the origins of globalization; the first awareness of an "energy crisis;" the birth of social movements like feminism, gay rights, and black power; the deepening of urban poverty and the expansion of the criminal justice system; the ascendance of the stock market and financial deregulation; the transition to a service economy; the growth of new forms of art and music like hip-hop and punk; the rise of evangelical Christianity as a political force; the emergence of a conservative movement; the end of Soviet Communism. The class asks students to consider how the social problems of the 1970s and 1980s anticipate those of the present day, and also how America today is different than in this earlier period. We use political speeches, manifestos, poetry, film, and novels as well as works of historical scholarship in order to try to understand the period. Readings may include Garry Wills, George Gilder, Jerry Falwell, Kwame Ture, Tom Wolfe, Thomas Frank and Alice Echols.

Notes

Same as HIST-UA 830 001.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1735 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2013

American Narratives II

4 units Tue
6:20 PM - 9:00 PM
George Shulman

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1735

Description

The goal of this course is to create a conversation between post world war two North American literature, and contemporary political theory. We focus especially on the relationship between theorists making arguments using the genre of the treatise or monograph, and literary artists dramatizing protagonists acting in fictional worlds. What theoretical and political difference do differences of genre make in how readers (and citizens) apprehend and act in the world? But we also pursue more substantive questions. First, how is politics (and the meaning of democracy) represented and recast? Second, how do literary artists and theorists view the political role of language in the world, compared to the ways they use language in their texts? Third, how are issues of race and gender addressed? Fourth, what is the relationship between re-imagining (and redeeming) American nationhood, and in contrast, investing in post- (or anti-) national identifications? "Theorists" include Norman O. Brown, Sheldon Wolin, Michel Foucault, Judith Butler, Jacques Ranciere, Lauren Berlant, Kimberlee Crenshaw, and Eve Sedgwick; literary artists include Thomas Pynchon, Norman Mailer, Adrienne Rich, Audre Lorde, Allan Ginsberg, Margaret Atwood, Toni Morrison, Phillip Roth.

Notes

Prerequisite IDSEM-UG 1592 or IDSEM-UG 1712 or IDSEM-UG 1475, or permission of the instructor.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1735 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
FA 2016

American Narratives II

4 units Thu
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
George Shulman

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1735

Description

The goal of this course is to create a conversation between post world war two American literature and political thought. We focus especially on the relationship between theorists making arguments using the genre of the treatise or monograph, and literary artists dramatizing protagonists acting in fictional worlds. What theoretical and political difference do differences of genre make in how readers (and citizens) apprehend and act in the world? But we also pursue more substantive questions. First, how is politics (and the meaning of democracy) represented in both theory and fiction? Second, how do literary artists represent and rework the dominant idioms tropes of American politics - especially ideas of the frontier, self-making, freedom, and related claims to American exceptionalism? Third, how are the politics of race and gender addressed in and by literary art in comparison to works of theory? Fourth, do critics and writers affirm -or dramatize and trouble- the pervasive and typically unquestioned attachment to the idea of "America?" What is the relationship between re-imagining (and redeeming) American nationhood, and in contrast, imagining anti-national or diasporic identifications? Our theorists include C. Wright Mills, Norman O. Brown, Sheldon Wolin, Judith Butler, Jacques Ranciere, Lauren Berlant, Kimberlee Crenshaw, Gloria Anzaldua, and Eve Sedgwick; our literary artists may include Thomas Pynchon, Norman Mailer, Allan Ginsberg, Phillip Roth, James Baldwin, Adrienne Rich, Audre Lorde, Margaret Atwood, Toni Morrison.

Notes

Prerequisite IDSEM-UG 1592 or IDSEM-UG 1844 or IDSEM-UG 1450 or IDSEM-UG 1272 or permission of the instructor (gms1@nyu.edu).

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1503 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
GLOBAL
SP 2010

American Poetics: Inventions and Intimate Dialogues in the Making of a Hemisphere

4 units Fri
11:00 AM - 1:45 PM
Millery Polyné

Description

The idea of an America/América has been diffracted but reconstituted by a number of theorists, policymakers, (forced) laborers, artists and revolutionary activists. Each of these actors sought to craft a new existence that distinguished itself from "Old World" tyranny and tensions, particularly through the creation of imagined communities of identity (i.e. racial, political, religious or sexual). America/América proved to be an extraordinarily malleable idea that liberated, united and modernized. Yet, the narrative of "Our America" also revealed its internal contradictions and fissures (the underside of modernity) within institutions and social phenomena it helped to perpetuate such as slavery, race, sexuality, diaspora (exile), and empire. This undergraduate course examines the cultural and political investments that have characterized the American Hemisphere and its components. The matrix of race, class and gender has been a useful lens to analyze the systems and structures in place that both benefited and suppressed American peoples and their contributions to the construction of America/América. Yet, the themes of migration, nationalism, sexuality, creolization, and empire-building also serve as essential tools to untangling and mapping the roots and routes of American development. Through a diverse set of materials (primary documents, secondary readings, films, music, and art) that utilize a multimedia and interdisciplinary approach to a range of anthropological, historical, literary, political and economic questions central to American experience(s), this course will critically engage the writings of thinkers (José Martí Walter Mignolo, Amy Kaplan, Toni Morrison) who have helped us better understand the "contact zone where Anglo and Latin America meet up, clash and interpenetrate."

Notes

SNY

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1503 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
GLOBAL
FA 2012

American Poetics: Inventions and Intimate Dialogues in the Making of a Hemisphere

4 units Wed
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Millery Polyné

Description

The idea of an America has been diffracted but reconstituted by a number of theorists, policymakers, (forced) laborers, and artists. Each of these actors sought to craft a new existence that distinguished itself from “Old World” tyranny, particularly through the creation of imagined communities of identity (i.e. racial, political, religious or sexual). America proved to be an extraordinarily malleable idea. Yet, the narrative of “Our America” also revealed its internal contradictions and fissures within institutions and social phenomena it helped to perpetuate such as slavery, race, and empire. This course examines the cultural and political investments that have characterized the American Hemisphere. The matrix of race, class and gender has been a useful lens to analyze the systems and structures in place that both benefited and suppressed American peoples and their contributions to the construction of America. Yet, the themes of migration, exile, nationalism, sexuality, creolization, and empire-building also serve as essential tools to untangling and mapping the roots and routes of American development. Through a diverse set of materials (primary documents, secondary readings, films, music, and art) that utilize a multimedia and interdisciplinary approach to a range of anthropological, historical, literary, political and economic questions central to American experience(s), this course will critically engage the writings of thinkers (José Martí Walter Mignolo, Amy Kaplan, Toni Morrison) who have helped us better understand the spheres where Francophone, Anglophone and Hispanophone worlds collide, coalesce and interpenetrate.

Notes

Same as SCA-UA 816.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1841 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
FA 2015

American Road Narratives

4 units Tue Thu
9:30 AM - 10:45 AM
Amy Spellacy

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1841

Description

This seminar will explore the literary and historical significance of the road narrative in twentieth-century American literature and film. We will identify the defining features of the American road narrative and ask how stories of travel, especially automobile travel, have functioned as a forum for examining larger social and cultural issues. As we consider the possibilities and promises represented by travel in these stories, we will also interrogate how race, class, and gender affect the experience of being on the road. While the road might signify freedom and new opportunity for some, for others it is linked with desperation or homelessness. Throughout the course, we will think about the relationship between cultural texts and the historical periods during which they were produced. The ways that the automobile has shaped American cities, landscape, and daily life will be particularly important to us. Many of the texts in the seminar feature movement from East to West that evokes the conquest and settling of the U.S. West, a central component of the founding mythology of the United States. However, we will also contemplate different trajectories in the Americas that question the association between travel and conquest. Authors include Zora Neale Hurston, John Steinbeck, Vladimir Nabokov, Jack Kerouac, and Cormac McCarthy.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1263 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
FA 2012

American Road Trip

2 units Tue Thu
2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
Steve Hutkins

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1263

Description

Going on the road is an archetypal American experience, the subject of countless poems, songs, movies, novels, and travel books. Throughout the country’s history, native-born writers and visitors from abroad have hit the road in the hope that through direct experience they could come to a better understanding of the American character and what the country is all about. In this course we travel across the country with these writers, exploring such questions as: What is the “American way of life,” and can some values, myths, and obsessions be seen as distinctly American? What does it mean to speak of a national identity, when there’s so much social and cultural diversity? How do the road trip narratives map the regional and literary geography of the country? Why this love of movement and speed, this romance with the road? Readings may include Twain’s Roughing It , Miller’s The Air-conditioned Nightmare , Beauvoir’s America Day by Day , Steinbeck’s Travels with Charlie , Kerouac’s On the Road , Wolfe's The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test , Least Heat-Moon’s Blue Highways , and Baudrillard’s America .

Notes

Course meets during the last seven weeks only, October 23–December 15.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1263 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2014

American Road Trip

2 units Tue Thu
2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
Steve Hutkins

Description

Going on the road is an archetypal American experience, the subject of countless poems, songs, movies, novels, and travel books. Throughout the country’s history, native-born writers and visitors from abroad have hit the road in the hope that through direct experience they could come to a better understanding of the American character and what the country is all about. In this course we travel across the country with these writers, exploring such questions as: What is the “American way of life,” and can some values, myths, and obsessions be seen as distinctly American? What does it mean to speak of a national identity, when there’s so much social and cultural diversity? How do the road trip narratives map the regional and literary geography of the country? Why this love of movement and speed, this romance with the road? Readings may include Twain’s Roughing It , Miller’s The Air-conditioned Nightmare , Beauvoir’s America Day by Day , Steinbeck’s Travels with Charlie , Kerouac’s On the Road , Wolfe's The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test , Least Heat-Moon’s Blue Highways , and Baudrillard’s America .

Notes

Course meets during the last seven weeks only, First Class: March 25; Last Class: May 8.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1451 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
SP 2013

Ancient Reflections in a Time of Modern War

2 units Tue
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Laura Slatkin

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1451

Description

In this class we explore ancient Greek attitudes toward war, as represented in epic, drama, and historiography. Among the topics we consider are: rhetoric and rationales for and against war; war and social cohesion; war and empire; the stakes of civil war; war and gender; the social costs of war; the implications for our contemporary situation. Readings may include, Homer, Iliad ; Sophocles, Ajax ; Aeschylus Seven Against Thebes ; Euripides, Iphigeneia in Aulis and Trojan Women ; Aristophanes, Peace ; Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War ; and twentieth century mediations on the problematic of war, such as Elaine Scarry, The Body in Pain ; Jonathan Shay, Achilles in Vietnam ; Simone Weil, The Iliad, or the poem of force .

Notes

Course meets 1/29- 3/12 only.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1451 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2011

Ancient Reflections in a Time of Modern War

2 units Wed
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Laura Slatkin

Description

In this class we will explore ancient Greek attitudes toward war, as represented in epic, drama, and historiography. Among the topics we will consider are: rhetoric and rationales for and against war; war and social cohesion; war and empire; the stakes of civil war; war and gender; the social costs of war; the implications for our contemporary situation. Readings may include, Homer, Iliad ; Aeschylus Seven Against Thebes ; Euripides, Iphigeneia in Aulis and Trojan Women ; Aristophanes, Peace ; Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War ; and 20th century mediations on the problematic of war, such as Elaine Scarry, The Body in Pain ; Jonathan Shay, Achilles in Vietnam ; Simone Weil, The Iliad , or the poem of force.

Notes

Course meets 1/26 - 3/9 only.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1899 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
FA 2016

Ancient Reflections in a Time of Modern War

4 units Wed
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Laura Slatkin

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1899

Description

In this class we explore ancient Greek attitudes toward war, as represented in epic, drama, and historiography. Among the topics we consider are: rhetoric and rationales for and against war; war and social cohesion; war and empire; the stakes of civil war; war and gender; the social costs of war; the implications for our contemporary situation. Readings may include, Homer, Iliad; Sophocles, Ajax; Aeschylus Seven Against Thebes; Euripides, Iphigeneia in Aulis and Trojan Women; Aristophanes, Peace; Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War; and twentieth century mediations on the problematic of war, such as Elaine Scarry, The Body in Pain; Jonathan Shay, Achilles in Vietnam; Simone Weil, The Iliad, or the poem of force.

Notes

Same as COLIT-UA 866.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1258 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
FA 2009

Ancient Theatre and Its Influences

4 units Tue
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Laura Slatkin

Description

What role did the theater play in the civic life of ancient Greece? How did Greek drama address vital social and political issues? Does Greek drama serve as a useful paradigm for exploring Roman drama? For contemporary theater? Through our readings of tragedy and comedy, we will explore Greek theater as a live space of social action, representing conflicts between the claims of family and state, between male and female, between traditional values and emergent democratic concerns. Drawing on the work of anthropologists and historians of antiquity, we will examine Greek drama’s relation to religion (e.g. sacrifice, lament, festival), to law (e.g. courtroom proceedings, punishment), and to civic debate. We will discuss both how plays were produced and the theories of drama they inspired. Building on our investigation of the Greek ‘case’, we will turn our attention to Roman tragedy and comedy and to selected works of the modern theater. Readings may include Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, Menander; Plato, Aristotle; Plautus, Seneca; Racine, Sartre, Fugard, Soyinka.

Notes

crosslisted with V29.0104

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1258 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
FA 2011

Ancient Theatre and Its Influences

4 units Wed
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Laura Slatkin

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1258

Description

What role did the theater play in the civic life of ancient Greece? How did Greek drama address vital social and political issues? Does Greek drama serve as a useful paradigm for exploring contemporary theater? Through our readings, we will explore Greek theater as a live space of social action, representing conflicts between the claims of family and state, between male and female, between traditional values and emergent democratic concerns. We will examine Greek drama's relation to religion (e.g. sacrifice, lament, festival), to law (e.g. courtroom proceedings, punishment), and to civic debate. We will discuss both how plays were produced and the theories of drama they inspired. Building on our investigation of the Greek 'case', we will turn our attention to Roman drama and to selected works of the modern theater. Readings may include Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, Menander; Plautus, Seneca; Racine, Sartre, Fugard.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1258 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
FA 2013

Ancient Theatre and Its Influences

4 units Thu
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Laura Slatkin

Description

What role did the theater play in the civic life of ancient Greece? How did Greek drama address vital social and political issues? Does Greek drama serve as a useful paradigm for exploring contemporary theater? Through our readings, we will explore Greek theater as a live space of social action, representing conflicts between the claims of family and state, between male and female, between traditional values and emergent democratic concerns. We will examine Greek drama's relation to religion (e.g. sacrifice, lament, festival), to law (e.g. courtroom proceedings, punishment), and to civic debate. We will discuss both how plays were produced and the theories of drama they inspired. Building on our investigation of the Greek 'case', we will turn our attention to Roman drama and to selected works of the modern theater. Readings may include Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, Menander; Plautus, Seneca; Racine, Sartre, Fugard.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1729 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
EARLY
SP 2013

Ancient and Renaissance Festivity: Its Literary, Dramatic and Social Forms

4 units Fri
11:00 AM - 1:45 PM
Susanne Wofford

Description

This class investigates the role of festive custom and holiday release, and the kinds of performance and literary form that they enable or frustrate, in ancient Greece and Rome, and in Renaissance Europe, with a 20th century Caribbean postlude. Why does festivity sometimes lead to political revolt and at other times does not? Why does the "carnivalesque" often include festive abuse as well as celebration? We look at theories of festivity and release, at the dionysiac, at the human/animal union in festivity, and at the role of the classical period in shaping Renaissance and even modern ideas of festivity, irony and the festive worship of the gods. We also explore the effect of the Protestant suppression of festive holiday and theatricality in Shakespeare’s England, and at the tensions inherent in festivity between excess and moderation, between the saturnalia and the philosophical symposium. The class begins with classical festivity, with Plato's “Symposium,” Euripides' The Bacchae , selections from Ovid's Fasti and the Metamorphoses , and Apuleius' Golden Ass . Readings from the Renaissance include: Rabelais, Gargantua and Pantagruel ; Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream , 1 Henry IV; Twelfth Night, Antony and Cleopatra, The Winter’s Tale. Concluding with carnival practices in the circum-Atlantic world, we take as examples the film Black Orpheus ( Orfeu Negro , directed by Marcel Camus), New Orleans carnival and Jazz Funerals, and Paule Marshall’s novel The Chosen Place, the Timeless People (1969) in order to see how these older traditions shape modern experience.

Notes

Open to sophomores and juniors only. Same as ENGL-UA 252 002 and MEDI-UA 996 002.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1729 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
or EARLY
SP 2016

Ancient and Renaissance Festivity: Its Literary, Dramatic and Social Forms

4 units Mon
2:00 PM - 4:45 PM
Susanne Wofford

Description

This class investigates the role of festive custom and holiday release, and the kinds of performance and literary form that they enable or frustrate, in ancient Greece and Rome, and in Renaissance Europe, with a 20th century postlude. Why does festivity sometimes lead to political revolt and at other times does not? Why does the "carnivalesque" often include festive abuse as well as celebration? We look at theories of festivity and release, at the dionysiac, at the human/animal union in festivity, and at the role of the classical period in shaping Renaissance and even modern ideas of festivity, irony and the festive worship of the gods. We also explore the effect of the Protestant suppression of festive holiday and theatricality in Shakespeare’s England, and at the tensions inherent in festivity between excess and moderation, between the saturnalia and the philosophical symposium. The class begins with classical festivity, with Plato's “Symposium,” Euripides'  The Bacchae , selections from Ovid's  Fasti  and the  Metamorphoses , and Apuleius'  Golden Ass . Readings from the Renaissance include: Rabelais,  Gargantua and Pantagruel ; Shakespeare,  A Midsummer Night’s Dream ,  1 Henry IV; Twelfth Night, Antony and Cleopatra,   The Winter’s Tale.  Concluding with carnival practices in the circum-Atlantic world, we take as examples the film  Black Orpheus  ( Orfeu Negro , directed by Marcel Camus), New Orleans carnival and Jazz Funerals, and probably Paule Marshall’s novel  The Chosen Place, the Timeless People  (1969) in order to see how these older traditions shape modern experience. We will end in 1968 in Greenwich Village with Richard Schechner’s Dionysus in 69.

Notes

Open to sophomores and juniors. Seniors require permission of the instructor (susanne.wofford@nyu.edu). Same as ENGL-UA 252 003.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1842 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
or EARLY
FA 2015

Ancients vs. Moderns

4 units Mon
2:00 PM - 4:45 PM
Frederic Clark

Description

Ancients and moderns have participated in constant dialogue—sometimes friendly, and sometimes hostile—that still shapes the complexities of our own approaches to the past today. This relationship has been figured in the metaphor of the modern dwarf standing atop the shoulders of the ancient giant, and seeing further thanks to the giant’s tall stature. This trope goes back to the Middle Ages, when medieval thinkers used it to express their relationship to the philosophers, poets, and historians of ancient Greece and Rome. While elegant, the phrase is decidedly ambiguous. Is the present better than the past? Or is the present only praiseworthy because of the past that preceded it? Could moderns ever be giants too? And what of conflicts, when moderns preferred to stand on their own two feet instead? As we will see, the story of “ancients vs. moderns” often proved counterintuitive. Moderns did not always advocate what we might regard as progress, nor did ancients always adopt outlooks that we might think traditional. This seminar traces approximately two millennia of conflict and compromise between so-called “ancients” and “moderns”—from ancient Greece to the world of revolutionary France and America. Students will explore competing constructions of antiquity and modernity through primary source readings from Cicero, Augustine, Peter Abelard, Petrarch, Erasmus, Bacon, Descartes, Gibbon and others.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1773 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
GLOBAL
SP 2014

Anna Karenina

2 units Tue
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Lauren Kaminsky

Description

Tolstoy’s famous novel begins with a provocation: “all happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” In questioning the relationship between morality and ordinary joys and sorrows, this course will begin with the book’s historical context before proceeding with interdisciplinary readings and retellings of the story. Originally published in serialized form, Anna Karenina was a comment on contentious debates about legal reforms and the so-called woman question in 1870s Russia. This course will rely on our reading of the text to similar effect: how do we decide what constitutes a family and why? What work do we expect the state and society to do on behalf of love, and vice versa? With these questions in mind, we will read Tolstoy’s eponymous heroine as a study in subjectivity and selfhood originating in and exceeding the realist novel, illuminating her status as a screen for historical and contemporary anxieties about infidelity, motherhood, consumption, scandal and choice. Reading the novel will be a central project of the class. Secondary readings will range from legal histories of marriage and consent to psychoanalytic works on desire and identification, as well as films such as Darezhan Omirbaev’s Chouga .

Notes

Course meets during the first seven weeks only, First Class: January 28; Last Class: March 11.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1488 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SP 2011

Antigone

2 units Tue
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Laura Slatkin

Description

Antigone: heroine or harridan? Political dissident or family loyalist? Harbinger of the free subject or captive of archaic gender norms? Speaking truth to power or preserving traditional privilege? Sophocles' Antigone has been good to think with since its first production in the fifth century BCE. From ancient commentators through Hegel to contemporary gender theorists like Judith Butler, readers have grappled with what Butler calls "Antigone's Claim." The play's exploration of gender, kinship, citizenship, law, resistance to authority, family vs. the state, and religion (among other issues) has proved especially compelling for modern thought. In this seminar we will closely read the play and some select commentary; supplemental readings may include writings of philosophers, classicists, playwrights, political theorists. We will also conclude with some 20th C. adaptations/re-imaginings of Antigone on the stage.

Notes

Course meets 1/25 - 3/8 only.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1488 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
SP 2016

Antigone

2 units Wed
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Laura Slatkin

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1488

Description

Antigone: heroine or harridan? Political dissident or family loyalist? Harbinger of the free subject or captive of archaic gender norms? Speaking truth to power or preserving traditional privilege? Sophocles' Antigone has been good to think with since its first production in the fifth century BCE. From ancient commentators through Hegel to contemporary gender theorists like Judith Butler, readers have grappled with what Butler calls "Antigone's Claim." The play's exploration of gender, kinship, citizenship, law, resistance to authority, family vs. the state, and religion (among other issues) has proved especially compelling for modern thought. In this seminar we will closely read the play and some select commentary; supplemental readings may include writings of philosophers, classicists, playwrights, political theorists. We will also conclude with some 20th C. adaptations/re-imaginings of Antigone on the stage.

Notes

Course meets during the first seven weeks only, First Class: January 27; Last Class: March 9.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1705 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
FA 2012

Antigone(s): Ancient Greece/Performance Now

4 units Tue
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Kristin Horton, Laura Slatkin

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1705

Description

A production of Antigone is taking place somewhere in the world every day—right now, as you are reading this. What was Antigone ? What is Antigone ? What might Antigone yet be? Our course—a collaboration between a stage director and a classicist—begins with an immersion in Sophocles' prize-winning play (441 BCE), with close attention to the history, politics, aesthetics, performance conditions, and production features of ancient Athenian drama more generally. The second half of our course turns to contemporary renditions of Antigone and will consider the dramatic and cultural configurations each new production activates. Antigone's exploration of the complexities of gender, kinship, citizenship, law, resistance to authority, family vs. the state, and religion (among other issues) has been compelling for modern thought, and especially galvanizing to theaters of resistance and dissent. Our classes will combine critical inquiry into the plays and surrounding discourse as well as experiments in interpretation—including acting workshops and staging exercises. Students need no background in acting, theater, or ancient literature, but do need critical energy and discipline. Among the modern plays we might address, in the second half of the semester, are reimaginings of Antigone by Brecht, Fugard, McLaughlin, and Miyagawa. To help us place antiquity and modernity in a productive conversation, we will also read secondary literature from several fields (classics, political theory, anthropology, theory of sexuality/gender).

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1705 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
PREMOD
FA 2016

Antigone(s): Ancient Greece/Performance Now

4 units Tue
3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Kristin Horton, Laura Slatkin

Syllabus

IDSEM-UG1705

Description

A production of  Antigone  is taking place somewhere in the world every day—right now, as you are reading this. What was  Antigone ? What is  Antigone ? What might  Antigone  yet be? Our course—a collaboration between a stage director and a classicist—begins with an immersion in Sophocles' prize-winning play (441 BCE), with close attention to the history, politics, aesthetics, performance conditions, and production features of ancient Athenian drama more generally. The second half of our course turns to contemporary renditions of  Antigone  and will consider the dramatic and cultural configurations each new production activates.  Antigone's  exploration of the complexities of gender, kinship, citizenship, law, resistance to authority, family vs. the state, and religion (among other issues) has been compelling for modern thought, and especially galvanizing to theaters of resistance and dissent. Our classes will combine critical inquiry into the plays and surrounding discourse as well as experiments in interpretation—including acting workshops and staging exercises. Students need no background in acting, theater, or ancient literature, but do need critical energy and discipline. Among the modern plays we might address, in the second half of the semester, are reimaginings of  Antigone  by Brecht, Fugard, McLaughlin, and Miyagawa. To help us place antiquity and modernity in a productive conversation, we will also read secondary literature from several fields (classics, political theory, anthropology, theory of sexuality/gender).

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1830 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
GLOBAL
WI 2016

Arab Cinema(s)

4 units Mon Tue Wed Thu
10:00 AM - 1:30 PM
Sinan Antoon

Description

The Arab world is a vast region encompassing vibrant societies and dynamic cultures, but its geopolitical importance and a resilient Orientalism often reduce it to Hollywoodish stereotypes and misrepresentations. One way of transcending these misrepresentations is to ask: How do Arab filmmakers represent their own reality cinematically? This course introduces students to contemporary Arab cinema. We will begin by briefly examining the introduction of the medium in colonial times and trace its development both as an industry as well as an art form through the national era all the way to the neoliberal present. We will view and critically examine a number of selected films that represent the diversity of the region, but also the shared concerns and common sociopolitical struggles and challenges facing its societies. We will focus on key moments, both aesthetically and politically, and will explore how filmmakers negotiate and represent the following: anti-colonialism and liberation, nationalism and national identity, gender and sexuality, communal strife and civil wars, class struggle and social justice, globalization and neoliberalism, and the recent revolts. Texts will include Said’s “Orientalism,” Shafik’s “Arab Cinema,” Khatib’s “Filming the Modern Middle East.” Films will include Chahine’s “Alexandria Why?”Abu As`ad’s “Paradise Now” Tlatli’s “Silence of the Palace,” and Oday Rasheed’s “Quarantine.”

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1830 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
GLOBAL
SU 2015

Arab Cinema(s)

4 units Mon Tue Wed Thu
12:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Sinan Antoon

Description

The Arab world is a vast region encompassing vibrant societies and dynamic cultures, but its geopolitical importance and a resilient Orientalism often reduce it to Hollywoodish stereotypes and misrepresentations. One way of transcending these misrepresentations is to ask: How do Arab filmmakers represent their own reality cinematically? This course introduces students to contemporary Arab cinema. We will begin by briefly examining the introduction of the medium in colonial times and trace its development both as an industry as well as an art form through the national era all the way to the neoliberal present. We will view and critically examine a number of selected films that represent the diversity of the region, but also the shared concerns and common sociopolitical struggles and challenges facing its societies. We will focus on key moments, both aesthetically and politically, and will explore how filmmakers negotiate and represent the following: anti-colonialism and liberation, nationalism and national identity, gender and sexuality, communal strife and civil wars, class struggle and social justice, globalization and neoliberalism, and the recent revolts. Texts will include Said’s “Orientalism,” Shafik’s “Arab Cinema,” Khatib’s “Filming the Modern Middle East.” Films will include Chahine’s “Alexandria Why?”Abu As`ad’s “Paradise Now” Tlatli’s “Silence of the Palace,” and Oday Rasheed’s “Quarantine.”

Notes

Session I Intensive: June 15 - July 2

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1854 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
GLOBAL
FA 2015

Architecture and the Modern

4 units Mon Wed
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
Anooradha Siddiqi

Description

This course examines a global framework for “the modern,” using architecture and urbanism as concrete objects for the study of this contentious category in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The theory and practice of architecture and urbanism embody and yet contest the universalizing aspirations of concepts of modernism, modernization, and modernity, as highly specific cultural, political, social, and technological enterprises. Taking as a premise that architecture is a site and subject for critical inquiry, what does it tell us about modernities, globalization, and politics, as well as history, theory, and criticism as epistemological approaches? In addition to a range of cultural theorists and historians of architecture and urbanism, students will be introduced to a critical selection of architects and architectural voices from the past and present, each with some stake in (or counter-claim against) the “modern,” including practitioners, critics, and institutions—from Le Corbusier to Rem Koolhaas, Reyner Banham to Manfredo Tafuri, the Bauhaus to the Rural Studio, and the Museum of Modern Art to the City of New York. We will engage architectural concepts and designs by learning to critically read and assess drawings and buildings closely within their historical contexts, drawing on designs, built artifacts, journals, books, films, and web-based materials. The class will also visit significant local works, archives, and institutions.

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1222 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SU 2014

Art Now: Tradition and Change

4 units Mon Wed
5:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Laurin Raiken, Barnaby Ruhe

Description

Art Now focuses on the contemporary art world, the forces producing continuous change and the ubiquitous presence of origins and tradition. We engage new media, technologies and performance while tracing their origins in ancient communities, Shamanism and Ritual. We explore the relationships between new media/performance forms and traditional artistic practice. We ask such questions such as: Why is New York still the capital of the art world? Why has everything in our culture and art become dominated by the money and power of the finance world, by the one-tenth of the one percent? Has money alone become the standard by which art and culture in general are valued? We pursue these questions by learning with guest artists, visiting museums, through imaginative writing, making art and through individual and group projects. Readings may include Meyer Schapiro’s Modern Art , Irving Sandler’s New York School , Harold Rosenberg’s Tradition of the New , John Berger’s Ways of Seeing , Toni Morrison’s Playing in the Dark , Linda Nochlin’s and Lucy Lippard’s work on Women and art and Linda Weintraub’s To Life! Eco Art in the Pursuit of a Sustainable Planet .

Notes

Session I: May 27 - July 3

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

IDSEM-UG1222 Lib Arts
HUM
Hist & Cult
SU 2013

Art Now: Tradition and Change

4 units Mon Wed
5:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Laurin Raiken, Barnaby Ruhe

Description

This course focuses on the contemporary art world and the forces producing continuous change and the re-creation of tradition. We examine new media, technologies and performance and trace their origins in ancient communities, shamanism and ritual. We explore the relationships between new media/performance forms and traditional artistic practices. We ask such questions as: What is the importance of place in energizing creativity? Have the forces of the art world shifted from capital cities outward toward unexpected influences and movements? Is New York still the capital of the art world? We pursue these questions by visiting museums and galleries, through imaginative writing and making art; and through individual and group projects. Readings may include Meyer Schapiro’s Modern Art , Irving Sandler’s The New York School, Harold Rosenberg’s The Tradition of the New , Toni Morrison’s Playing in the Dark , Clyde Taylor’s The Mask of Art , Suzi Gablik's Reenchantment of Art , John Berger's The Shape of a Pocket , Victor Turner’s From Ritual to Theatre , Dorothy Lee's Valuing the Self, Mary Anne Staniszewski’s Believing Is Seeing and Robert Goldwater’s Primitivism in Modern Art .?

Notes

Session I: May 28 - July 5

Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)

500

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