Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Classes for Fall 2012 God Willing

IDSEM-UG 1503 American Poetics: Inventions and Intimate Dialogues in the Making of the Hemisphere

The idea of an America/Amrica 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/Amrica 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/Amrica. 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 (Jos Mart 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.

WRTNG-UG 1550 Fiction Writing

This course provides students interested in writing fiction an opportunity to explore (and practice) various forms of fiction in a workshop environment. The main objective of the course is to help students develop their individual styles and voices and to make them aware of the various techniques available to them. We will examine every aspect of the craft of traditional fiction writing: plot, structure, point of view, narrative voice, dialogue, building of individual scenes, etc as well as the new techniques of the digital age: hypertext, self-editing text, visual and audio images, animation. We will learn how to balance the traditional with the new without overwhelming the written text with gadgets. Students will be taught to look at texts from the unique perspective of a fellow writer and encouraged to become part of a community of writers where they will work with their peers in a safe, honest and considerate environment. Students will present their own fiction, respond to the writings of others, and pose questions about literature, editing, and publishing. Students will be required to write either two short stories, or a short story and a chapter from a novel, or a short story and several pieces of flash fiction. The reading assignments will include selections from old and contemporary authors such as Chekhov, Joyce, Borges, Nabokov, Alice Munro, George Saunders, Edward P. Jones, Junot Diaz, Jennifer Egan.

MEIS-UA 501 Elementary Turkish I

Introduction to the written and spoken language of modern Turkey. All texts are in Latin characters and comprise both textual and audio material.

RELST-UA 192 Foundations of the Christian-Jewish Argument

Illustrates the complexity of the relationship between Jews and Christians in the Middle Ages by examining both Christian and Jewish perspectives and delineating the variety of responses within each religious community to the other. The primary focus is on the European Middle Ages, but the origins of the argument a millennium earlier are also considered.

 UPADM-GP 252 Legal & Philosophical Approaches to Judaism

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