2020-2021 Academic Catalog 
    
    Nov 30, 2020  
2020-2021 Academic Catalog

IDND 015 - CLARK COMMONS: SPECIAL TOPICS


Summer & Intersession Topic: PANDEMIC: FROM HORROR TO HOPE —– COVID-19 may be dominating our lives, but it is hardly the first pandemic in human history. Others, like the plague, cholera, smallpox, and influenza, swept across the globe in earlier periods. Our present experience has only reinforced what we have learned from the past  -that pandemics are more than the interaction of a disease and the human body. From pushing developments in science and public health, to inspiring artists and writers, to reformatting economies and patterns of spending, to exposing fissures in our social world, pandemics have fundamentally shaped human experience. This course will provide prospective on COVID-19 by looking at pandemics broadly from a multidisciplinary perspective, including contributions from faculty in history, literature, art history, screen studies, biology, geography, anthropology, and philosophy.

Intersession Topic: BLACK LIVES MATTER —– In 2020, in the wake of the murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd, we witnessed a visible resurgence of the movement for Black Lives, with massive global uprisings calling for transformative justice, divestment from the police, and the abolition of the carceral system. This Clark Commons course is an introduction to Black Lives Matter. Bringing together grassroots and activists’ knowledge and a broad range of critical social theory, the course situates the Black Lives Matter Movement within a longer historical trajectory of Black social movements. Here, we invite students to grapple with concepts like race and racism, racial capitalism, power, sovereignty, freedom and liberation and to critically engage with the structural critiques, methods and political imaginations that scaffold the movement for Black Lives.

Intersession Topic: COVID, POWER, INEQUALITY —— This interdisciplinary team-taught course uses the idea that COVID-19 can teach us not only about power and privilege - that is, illuminate inequities -but also about human possibility, resilience, and resistance.  The instructors’ position is that we, as a society, can neither break with the past nor imagine the world anew without social critique and engaging with tools and strategies of activism. The course will focus on power, privilege, and possibility from multiple disciplinary perspectives (sociology, psychology, international development and sociolinguistics and literacy) encouraging students to read broadly and synthesize across disciplines.

Prerequisites: varies

Anticipated Terms Offered: varies