UW1020 Courses

Fall 2017

For room assignments, please see the Schedule of Classes.

Hybrid courses blend face-to-face classroom instruction with online learning to improve learning outcomes. Hybrid courses thus move a significant amount of course work to an online environment.

Service-learning courses address a community need through direct or indirect service and community-based research.

Course Offerings

Course Descriptions

(De)Constructing the Non-Human

Bieda, Casey
CRN 83326 | Section M12 | TR 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  F 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM
CRN 81594 | Section M6 | TR 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM

With the vast proliferation and popularity of science fiction in video games, comic books, and popular literature at large, the actor of the “non-human” (or “other”) has cycled through a vast number of representations. These representations have long been the subjects of theological, political,  philosophical, sociological, and scientific debate. These debates have raised larger issues of “humanity”, creationist responsibility, animate/inanimate “life”, “animacy” hierarchy, anthropomorphism, and technological supremacy.  What is “human”? In this age of technology and exploration, how do we define ideas of “human”, “post-human”, and “non-human”? What happens when those definitions touch, blend, or oppose one another? What narratives do they create? Who gets to tell those narratives, and why are those narratives important in how we engage with our contemporary culture?

In this course, we will investigate points in literature, film, graphic narratives, and other media forms where the familiar and unfamiliar touch and analyze how humans both react and interact with these non-human entities. Through these points of contact we will grapple with larger discussions of scientific advancement, animal rights, and how the world expands (or contracts) when we consider life beyond the purely “human”. We will investigate, challenge, and report on several sources of interest ranging from Medieval poetry, to 1950’s science fiction, to contemporary podcasts and graphic narratives  through several concentrated writing assignments and classroom discussion. We will also write a final intensive research paper focused on one subject from/or based on our classroom material.

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Speaking of Animals:Thoughts on Human and Animal Nature

Botts, Eric
CRN 88210 | Section M81 | MW 2:30-3:45 F 2:30-3:20
CRN 88211 | Section M82 | MW 4:10-5:25 F 4:10-5:00
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; classroom and online instruction.

Over the past century, many psychologists and linguists have tried to teach forms of human language to great apes. Whether they have succeeded has been a question of intense controversy. The arguments that grew out of these studies turned into a bitter war of words less about science than about humanity’s place in the world. The underlying anxiety was this: If language is not uniquely human—nor the use of tools, nor the capacities for compassion, morality, and self-recognition—then what unique role can humanity possibly serve in a worldview that presumes human uniqueness?
This course takes a different tack: Rather than presuming humans to be either masters or stewards of the natural world, and rather than presuming that we are unique among other animals, we ask a variety of questions to help define what role we want to play in that world. These questions will be rooted in a wide range of fields: science, philosophy, psychology, engineering, art, business, agriculture—it all depends on how we, as a class, choose to direct our thinking. In other words, this is an interdisciplinary course, meaning that you will get to explore ideas within your major, but you will also be expected to engage ideas in other fields.
We’ll read works by classic and contemporary authors like Charles Darwin, Elena Passarello, Jeremy Bentham, Temple Grandin, David Hume, Annie Dillard, and Virginia Woolf. We’ll explore topics of diet and conservation, as well as less obviously related topics, like slavery, urban planning, gender equality, and musical taste. And we’ll even look at topics that, at first, might seem totally unrelated, like the gullibility of modern media audiences. And in the process, we’ll develop your skills in writing, reading, critical thinking, research, collaboration, and technology.
To test those skills, you will produce three essays: an opinion piece, a personal essay, and a feature article; each of these should be written in a voice and style appropriate for a popular magazine or newspaper. To prepare for these projects, you will write weekly blog posts, which I encourage you to incorporate into your larger projects as appropriate. This is a highly collaborative class, so you will workshop each other’s writing in small groups to help with revision, and you will decide, as a class, on a final collaborative project. This could be a magazine, a podcast, an organized event—anything that can be accomplished within a semester that will exercise and demonstrate the skills that this course is designed to teach.
Yes, this class will be tough. We’ll read and think and read and write and rewrite and think harder and… you get the idea. But it will also be fun. You’ll experience new ideas, probably make new friends, get super-nerdy about your research, and that final project, whatever it is, you’ll love it!

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Reading Without Words: The Image as Text

Fletcher, Wade
CRN 82119 | Section M38 | TR 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  
CRN 81595 | Section M40 | TR 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

Are images texts? Can images be “read?” What does it mean to “read” an image? As individuals, we are confronted with, interpret, process, and ignore a barrage of images every day. Via these images, visual narratives and arguments manifest across many spectrums, from business, advertising, and politics, to popular culture, art, and fashion, with each image vying for our attentions. In this course, we intersect with the study of visual culture and visual rhetoric, considering the role images play in our culture(s), while exploring what it means to examine something as an "image" and investigating how visual narratives and arguments are formed, composed, and realized. To this end, we’ll examine images alongside written texts, exploring the parallels between the two forms.

Our subject matter will include two wordless graphic novels, visual art (specifically the collection at the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum), and iconic and cultural images, the latter of which will potentially comprise photographs, advertising, branding and marketing, iconic images, and much more. Assignments will include three essays of increasing length, each focusing on a particular image (or set of images) – a blog critique, an analysis of a visual argument, and an argumentative research essay – as well as short visual projects, contributions to an online class discussion forum, and a turn (with a partner) leading class discussion.

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The Writer in Context: Writing as a Social Practice

Friedman, Sandra
CRN 82573 | Section M56 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM
CRN 82429 | Section M11 | MW 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
CRN 81647 | Section M75 | MW 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM

Love letters, song lyrics, Tweets, notes to self, research papers, lab reports.  You already have many different ways of writing, and you automatically shift modes when you go from writing a history paper to writing fan fiction.  And yet, you may have felt baffled when a teacher required a certain procedure for note-taking, demanded that you write according to a pre-set format, or took off points because you used “I.”  We have all had experiences of pleasure and confidence in writing, but also moments when we were disappointed or even shocked by a teacher’s response to our work.  How do you make sense of these varied experiences of writing?   And how can you approach the vastly different writing assignments you will encounter in college?  Are there skills that carry over from one college writing assignment to another? 

The premise of this course is that by studying writing itself, you can become a more effective writer in various contexts.  In this class, we will explore theories about writing: how writers are shaped by their social contexts, how they understand and make use of texts, why they produce texts in a particular way.  By considering these issues, and by doing your own research, you will become a more informed and self-aware writer.  Can I teach you “how to write” or even how to be good at “college writing”?  No.  But in this class, you will learn not only to make sense of past experiences of writing, but also to develop strategies that will enable you to understand the contexts of diverse writing assignments and to approach them successfully. 

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Legacies of the Holocaust

Gamber, Cayo
CRN 82110 | Section M20 | TR 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  
CRN 81738 | Section M74 | TR 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM 
CRN 83324 | Section M16 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM 
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

In this course, the series of tasks you will perform – writing a research paper that integrates both primary and secondary sources – are designed both to help you become familiar with an array of research efforts as well as familiar with writing an authoritative study of your chosen topic. The range of research topics is wide, from the role art played in the Holocaust to the workings of a particular concentration camp; or from the role liberators played (or failed to play); to what is known about the "bearers of secrets," theSonderkommando, who were eyewitnesses to the Final Solution. While we may not be able to make amends for the Holocaust, I believe that through the careful study of the lives of those who perished and the words of those who survived, we become witnesses for the eyewitnesses, witnesses who are willing to be bearers of the stories and history of the Shoah. If you have any questions about this class, please contact Professor Gamber at cayo1@gwu.edu.


WTF?! Profanity and Its Contexts

Hayes, Carol
CRN 82432 | Section M26 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM

Words have power. But that power, and often the meaning of the words, can change depending on context. How a word is used – by and to whom, and for what purpose (also known as the rhetorical situation) – is vital to understanding the power of a word. We'll begin the semester by reading excerpts from Randall Kennedy's Nigger: The Strange Career of a Troublesome Word, which takes up the question of what the N-word means, based on when, how, and by whom it is used--and also asks whether the word should be shunned or continued in its uses. The first paper of the semester will ask you to place a piece of profanity in a particular context (perhaps a particular subculture, such as a sports team, or an ethnic culture) in order to make visible the impact of the rhetorical situation on the word as it was used in that particular time and place. We'll use the readings throughout the semester to introduce ideas of disciplinarity: scholars who discuss profanity work within Hip Hop culture, Linguistics, Anthropology, Neuroscience, Philosophy, Psychology, and many other fields. Readings from these disciplines will model how scholars frame their writing within academic discourses. Through a series of writing and research projects that focus on specific instances of profanity, you'll learn to frame your own work in these ways as well, so that by the end of the semester you'll not simply be reporting on what other scholars have said, but actively engaging as participants in university-level writing and research.

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The Lessons of 60’s Sitcoms: from Petticoats to the Cosmos and Back Again to Earth

Herer, Lisbeth
CRN 88198 |Section M78 | TR 8:30 AM - 9:45 AM  
CRN 88199 |Section M79 | TR 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM 
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

“I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.” – Groucho Marx
Television has been called many names: some good, many bad. Perhaps when you watch television, if you do, you feel you are tuning out and not tuning in. Maybe like Groucho Marx, you feel you should read a book instead? Fair enough, but TV’s broad reach – by 1960, one television in 9 out of 10 households; today 120 million households – is undeniable. TV shows as cultural artefacts allow us to plumb the depths of a given historical moment to illuminate the desires and anxieties of the culture from which it emanates. This course will look at American culture and history of the 1960’s through the lens of iconic and lesser-known 60’s sitcoms and use these sitcoms as points of departure to explore such issues as class, gender, race, agrarian-technology dichotomy, the space race, and Cold War tensions. Through rhetorical analyses, we will explore how these issues, which reflect political, social, and cultural struggles, were cast and (re)constructed as we move through time, attempting to unpack the ways in which TV supports and undermines normative values. The course will offer students an opportunity to develop their academic writing and research skills. Assignments will include an annotated bibliography, a short sitcom critique, a character study, and a research paper. 

Communicating Climate Change

Jacoby, Lindsay
CRN 85185 | Section M37 | MW 8:30 AM - 9:45 AM  
CRN 85184 | Section M73 | MW 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

How has climate change debate evolved in the past decade, from Al Gore’s hopeful message in the 2006 film An Inconvenient Truth to the current renewed prominence of climate denial? Globally and nationally, have we progressed in our understanding and approach to the problem, or are we further behind than ever? In this course, we will study the role of communication in shaping public attitudes and actions toward climate change. We will examine how scientific information is used in climate change debates and discuss the role that scientists have played in sharing ideas with the public and countering climate denial. We will also delve into the dynamics of environmental racism, the powerful rhetoric of the climate justice movement, and the role of morality in arguments about climate change. You will develop a deeper understanding of effective climate change communication by analyzing films, scientific writing, journalism, social media, and other popular texts of your choosing. And, you will get to explore effective responses to climate change by assessing your own carbon footprint and taking a personal or political action in response to this environmental crisis. Assignments include an analysis of scientific communication, an action proposal, a research-driven project, and a final presentation. This course is a fully hybrid course that meets online for the Friday studio.

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The Politics of Performance: Theatre, Political Arenas, and Their Masses

Koenig, Susan
CRN 83639 | Section M13 | MW 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  F 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM
CRN 83507 | Section M55 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM

Politics and performance are intimately tied to one another. Politics is, arguably, performance distilled by rhetoric, while performances tend to be politically driven. You cannot ever entirely separate the two. Throughout this course we will dwell on a variety of questions, including: Is it possible to remove performance from its political ties or vice versa? What sort of relationship is formed between verbal and visual rhetoric in political performance and performative politics? What kind of relationships do we see being performed by the speechwriter/organizer/playwright and the politician/protestor/actor? What does it mean for the general populace that the three are so closely tied? How do audiences respond to provocation where they seek entertainment? How do voters respond to entertainment where they seek provocation?

While we will focus on theatrical and political performance in our readings, this course certainly will not limit itself to traditional theatrical and political spaces. Students are encouraged to think about the ways in which political performativity takes center stage at Slutwalks, #BlackLivesMatter rallies, the RNC and DNC, Pride Parades, news interviews, talk shows, and other similar political phenomena. Our primary texts will be two politically minded plays, with supplements from a variety of performance studies texts with various critical lenses. From these readings we will branch out into the many avenues performance and politics cohabit.

As writing is the center of the course, students will be asked to write an ethnographic paper on a political rally or theatrical performance of their choice, and a final research paper.

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Media Fandom: Geeks, Fanboys, and Stalker Chicks

Larsen, Katherine
CRN 81592 | Section M32 | TR 8:30 AM - 9:45 AM  
CRN 81591 | Section M31 | TR 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  
CRN 81643 | Section M46 | TR 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  
CRN 83635 | Section M39 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

Lonely Trekkies in Vulcan ears, hysterical Twilight fans weeping at the sight of Robert Pattinson, basement dwellers, pale in the glow of a computer screen. These are our stereotypes of media fans. They make us laugh, they make us nervous, they are objects of derision, but who are they really?

A better question might be who we are – since we are all fans of something – and how do we consume culture. How do we talk back to it, reshape it, pull it to pieces and then put it back together? The answers to these questions have the potential to offer insight into what we value (or devalue) as a culture and why. What captures our imaginations? Why do we love Sherlock or Doctor Who or Mass Attack or One Direction? Why do others look down on us for loving them? If we all consume so much media why do we have such a problem with fans?

This writing and research intensive course will begin with an examination of the current research on fans and fan communities. We will then look closely at fan practices in online fan communities and analyze a range of fan generated media, especially fan fiction. Student research will involve close examination of an online fan community.

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Historical Creative Nonfiction 

Maakestad, Robert
CRN 88200 |Section M8 | MW 8:30-9:45AM 
CRN 88201 |Section M.80 | MW 10:00-11:15 AM 
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

In historical creative nonfiction, writers research the past in order to inform the present. By reexamining and retelling history within the genre of creative nonfiction, writers inhabit the space between past and present, tying the two together by thinking critically on the page. Through consideration of the greater context of historical events and persons, the reader juxtaposes the past with their own life and better understands how to create meaning in the present. 
In this class we will read essays by Elizabeth Kolbert, John McPhee, John Jeremiah Sullivan, Joan Didion, David Foster Wallace, and many other writers. These readings will focus on historical events and persons and allow for discussion of the way the past informs the present. By reading researched, argument-driven historical essays and discussing them in the classroom, students will learn the rhetorical situation and see how writers use argument in historical creative nonfiction writing. Students will then apply the rhetorical situation and their own research to three historical creative nonfiction writing projects throughout the semester: a profile essay, and two researched narratives. 

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Composition Through Creative Nonfiction

Magellan, Peter
CRN 82574 | Section M76 | MW 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  
CRN 81644 | Section M48 | MW 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM 
CRN 88467 | Section M84 | MW 4:10PM - 5:25 PM 
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

"Here was a man inspecting his mind as a means of inspecting the human mind."
-John Jeremiah Sullivan

Creative nonfiction, and in particular the personal essay, has given writers a special form, a space where they can merge experience with research, in order to ask complex questions about the world we live in. It is a genre that encourages writers to look at life closely and make arguments about themselves and by extension, humanity as a whole. This class will study the personal essay as a form, letting students explore narrative and argument, pulling from experiences in their lives and putting them under the microscope, using this specificity to unlock universal ideas. It will focus on observation, critical thinking, and reflection, the most important tools in an essayist’s toolbox.

We will read essays by Annie Dillard, Joan Didion, David Foster Wallace, John Jeremiah Sullivan, and others and discuss the ways that these essayists pair their own experience with research in order to address interesting (and sometimes difficult) topics. Graded work will be comprised of weekly pastiches and prompts, which will get students to look analytically at moments in their lives, and use certain experiences as entry points into examining larger questions about the world. There will be two major essay assignments, one a personal essay that requires students to balance narrative and reflection, the other an argumentative piece that relies on research to explore a question, or problem, that they think needs to be answered. 

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The Search for Extraterrestrial Life in Fiction and Reality

Malone-France, Derek
CRN 83321 | Section M5 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
CRN 83323 | Section M15 | TR 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; classroom and online instruction.

Human beings have always speculated about the possibility of life existing elsewhere in the cosmos, beyond the Earth.  Today, rapid technological advances are allowing us to view and analyze an ever-expanding portion of the universe.  And the early results indicate the existence of an enormous number of ‘Earth-like’ planets that exist within ‘habitable zones’ around other stars that have characteristics similar to our sun.   In other words, the current evidence suggests a high probability that the sorts of processes that led to the emergence of life on earth some 4 billion years ago have also occurred elsewhere.  It now seems very likely, therefore, that we—the human and other living inhabitants of earth—are not alone in the universe.

The intellectual and cultural implications of discovering extraterrestrial life are profound.  Even if we were to find merely primitive microbial life somewhere outside of our solar system (much less advanced life), it would require a fundamental rethinking of traditional philosophical and religious understandings of humanity and our place in the universe.  While science fiction writers have been exploring these implications for well over a hundred years, serious scholarly attention to the spiritual, moral, psychological, and societal issues involved has only recently begun to develop.

The name for the newly emerging, interdisciplinary field that includes both those who are searching for extraterrestrial life and those who are thinking about the potential consequences of this search for human existence is ‘astrobiology’.  It is a wide-open, interdisciplinary field—where philosophers, theologians, historians, political scientists, sociologists, psychologists, and even artists are speaking to physicists, biologists, computer scientists, engineers, and astronomers.  So, it represents a perfect intellectual forum in which to explore the diverse ways in which academic writers pursue their research and attempt to make it understandable and persuasive to others.  In this course, we will examine the search for extraterrestrial life in both science fiction and in reality (with special attention to current NASA-driven programs and projects related to this search), and students will have the opportunity to develop research and writing projects that connect their own personal interests to this examination.

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Memorials, Museums, and Monuments: Writing the Past through Place and Space

Mantler, Gordon
CRN 83328 | Section M65 | TR 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM

The National Museum of African American History and Culture just opened on the Mall – the culmination of more than one hundred years of advocacy for such an institution. But while the museum has enjoyed tremendous attention in its opening months, many other museums, memorials, and monuments already here in Washington have commemorated and narrated the American story, or stories, of race for generations. From the African American Civil War memorial to the National Museum of the American Indian, public spaces throughout the city depict the nation’s often tortured relationship with race. Visitors of such spaces generally consider them reliable vehicles for telling that history. But how historically reliable are such public history accounts? What sorts of pressures do these institutions face in relating their interpretations? And, perhaps most importantly for a writing course, are there explicit rhetorical features that distinguish academic history and argument from popular ones found in museums, memorials, and monuments? In this class, students will analyze these carefully crafted, sometimes controversial places and spaces around Washington and how they narrate race – including their physical locations, their visual symbolism, and written interpretations. In the process, you will be asked to write your own argument-driven narratives, sharpening not just your ability to convey your thoughts on paper but also bolstering an array of academic skills, such as critical reading, argument development, substantive revision, and primary source analysis.

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Jacked: The Appropriation and Exploitation of African American Culture

Marcus, Robin
CRN 81645 | Section M49 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  
CRN 81598 | Section M42 | MW 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  
CRN 82268 | Section M36 | MW 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  
CRN 82269 | Section M43 | MW 4:10 PM - 5:25 PM 
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

Using the terms "appropriation" and "exploitation," this course examines the theft of African American labor, income stability, wealth building capacity and intellectual property as a result of institutional racism. Over the semester, students will examine, analyze and discuss questions of cultural authenticity and realness, white supremacy, and the ways appropriation and exploitation have been embedded in American institutions, and will explore contemporary strategies for resistance and reclamation. Selected texts (scholarly and non-scholarly) will provide a foundation for class discussion and analysis. Students will write three linked papers of increasing length and complexity. The research process is designed to produce a discovery that contributes to the body of knowledge related to a subject of students’ choosing.

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Translation as Transfer & Transformation: (Re)Looking at Language

Martinez, Marcos
CRN 81646 | Section M50| TR 4:10-5:25  
CRN 81743 | Section M51 | TR 2:30-3:45  
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

Language matters.  But proficiency in a foreign language is NOT required for this course.  Instead, we’ll unbind our ideas of literacy and revel in the positive discomfort of confronting tongues in unfamiliar ways.  As we investigate our relationships with texts, we will explore issues of identity, migration, and transnationalism.  Correspondents, diplomats, and heads of state serve as interlocutors—often bridging ideas or policies across languages.  Scientists engaged in multinational research have to contend with the nuances woven into digital chat.  Machine translation software only goes so far without human interpretation.  How can the practice of translation (the transfer of meaning from one language to another “mode”) help shape our understanding of communication, while providing fresh insights into the prism of our unique identities?
Throughout the semester, we will focus on the idea of language itself (literacy, both word-based and visual).  We will consider the concept of “translation” through three lenses:
the processes of transfer from idea to text (written and visual)
critical analysis as an act of translation to glean understanding of texts
transformation through the act of translation (across languages, and across genres).
Critical readings from bilingual works (including Stalling’s Yingelishi and Anzaldúa’s Borderlands / La Frontera) will enhance our understanding of “code-switching.”  Assignments include a literacy essay, critical art analysis, exercises using Google Translate, group work leading class discussion, and an ethnographic research essay.

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Please Like Us: Selling With Social Media

McCaughey, Jessica
CRN 81648 | Section M58 | MW 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
CRN 81744 | Section M61 | MW 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; classroom and online instruction.

What convinces us to buy or support a company or a cause? What makes writing effective in the world of social media marketing and promotion? How does this shift from industry to industry? When a business disaster strikes, how do organizations respond through social media? How should they? The new and complex rhetoric of selling through social media (whether one is selling an idea, a product, a person, or a cause) has its own language and writing conventions – even if not everyone using Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, FourSquare, Pinterest, or blogs for this purpose has mastered them yet.

In this class students will take on the roles of scholar and critic, examining the rhetoric of social media as it is used for selling and promotion. They will choose a related group of individuals, companies, or organizations that are active in social media and track, analyze, and critique their marketing or promotion efforts over the course of the semester. Further, they will work to develop critical thinking skills and find, understand, and utilize research in a series of written arguments. The class will focus significant time and energy exploring audience, evidence, and revision, both in our own work and in the writing of outside individuals and organizations as students become expert critics of social media selling.

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Imagining the Future: Genetics in Popular Culture

McReynolds, Leigha
CRN 82423 | Section M7 | MW 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  F 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM
CRN 82571 | Section M77 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM

From the mainstream news media to Hollywood, our obsession with genetics suggests that some of our strongest fears surround the human ability to manipulate DNA. Our cultural preoccupation with this issue is rooted in the birth of eugenics at the end of the nineteenth century. Since then, scientific progress has led us to contemplate the potentially threatening consequences of technologies from cloning to gene therapy. Imagining dystopic futures where genes determine one’s destiny or where expensive procedures create a genetic underclass is far more common than depictions of progressive futures where a democratic society is enhanced by access to lifesaving therapies. In this class we will explore where these fears come from; what, exactly, we are so afraid of; and how our fears about and the promises of genetic research and technology are represented and manipulated.

We will begin the class by performing cultural analyses of popular culture artifacts that center around or draw on genetic science. We will consider the purpose of these artifacts — why do they use genetics and what message are they presenting to the audience? — as well as the developments in science and technology that have enabled these representations. Then through a conceptual archaeology and a synthesis paper, you will research in-depth an aspect of genetics that is of particular interest to you; you will trace its development through history and science as well as various popular media such as comics or cinema. We will end the semester with a research paper in which you present an original contribution on the ways that culture is shaped by and in turn shapes advances in genetics.

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Music as a Reaction to Societal Ills and as a Source of Community

Miller, Bruce
CRN 83330 | Section M66 | TR 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM
CRN 81597 | Section M1 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; classroom and online instruction.

From homemade banjo-like stringed instruments employed by rural Malawians, Florida musician Moses Williams fashioning a one-stringed instrument out of a door, to Nigerian Afro beat pioneer Fela Kuti’s slogan that “music is a weapon”, various types of sound art have been used to stare down poverty, radicalize groups of people into a movement for social justice, or simply allow us all to recognize something about where we come from and what we have in common. In this course, we will survey readings, performance, video, documentary, and no doubt some deep listening in order to craft our own writing, and perhaps opinion, on the subject. Along the way, we’ll take on everything from urban free jazz, rural folk and the complexities inherent in semi-known folk-pop hybrids from Mauritania to Thailand.

Students will craft papers that trace anything from origins of a particular musical form and how it was shaped by environment, to musical statements both cultural and political, to various folk traditions, and how they are either preserved or threatened. Topics may deal with movements such as Rock Against Racism, and Riot Grrrl; we will check in with the West Blue Nile People of Sudan and note their ability to harness song and dance in order to fight back against a government that bombs its own people. There will also be a chance to write short reviews or other commentary on the importance of an artist or style.

Texts may include:

  • Alan Lomax’s The Land Where the Blues Began (video)
  • Michael Azerrad’s Our Band Could Be Your Life
  • Francis Bebey’s African Music: A People’s Art
  • Photo collections of early phonograph memorabilia from around the globe
  • Reebee Garofalo’s Rockin’ The Boat: Mass Music and Mass Movements
  • Amandla! A Revolution in Four Part Harmony

…and of course, select recordings to enhance what we discuss and write about.  

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Faking Democracy

Mullen, Mark
CRN 82430 | Section M14 | MW 8:30 AM - 9:45 AM  F 8:30 AM - 9:20 AM
CRN 84640 | Section M23 | MW 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  F 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM
CRN 84641 | Section M52 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; classroom and online instruction.

The relationship between the political establishment and the American news media plunged into uncharted territory when the current US president labeled the press “the enemy of the American people.”  Yet many commentators barely registered any surprise.  By that point the US had already witnessed cynical manipulation of the infosphere by everyone from domestic extremist groups to foreign governments, not to mention the political campaigns themselves.  The press itself seemed confused how to respond to an environment where many news consumers themselves no longer seemed to care much about accuracy, evidence, or authenticity.
Does the public’s torrid love affair with “fake news” and “alternative facts” indicate a massive failure in public media literacy?  Is this a throwback to an earlier age of rough-and-tumble journalism where facts were secondary to political ideology?  Or are we experiencing a mutation in the information environment created by the technologies we use to create and access news?
We will look at these and many more questions over the course of a class that will challenge you to develop new writing and research skills—even as we ponder whether or not those skills really matter any more.

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Fashion Emergency!: Clothing and Global Capitalism

Myers, Danika
CRN 82422 | Section M70 | TR 8:30 AM - 9:45 AM  
CRN 81596 | Section M41 | TR 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

Did you wake up this morning and feel like you had nothing to wear? Where does that feeling come from, when you’re standing in front of a closet full of clothes? Or maybe you feel like you pay no attention to what you wear—yet what you “thoughtlessly” put on still tells the world something about you.

This class will start by exploring the cultural meanings that articles of clothing acquire: how can clothes communicate a sense of humor, morality or religious beliefs, an appreciation for certain types of music or culture, lifestyle, class, and even politics? From there, we will begin to consider how economics and modes of production shape our desire for clothing that communicates the “right” message while layering our clothing with additional meaning.

Over the past decade, fast fashion, off-shore manufacturing, and shortened design “seasons” have all put pressure on consumers to purchase more and more clothing, while “slow fashion”, DIY movements, and small retailers that advertise ethical labor practices and environmentally sustainable manufacturing have grown. Paradoxically, these movements “sell” themselves as a way to defy the pressures of a global capitalist fashion industry while tapping into a different set of consumer desires.

Over the course of the semester you will first familiarize yourself with some of the questions scholars ask about how clothing fashions mean and matter in the contemporary economic and cultural landscape, and then develop an original research project that takes a closer look at some aspect of clothing, exploring how and why it communicates meaning, and identifying those economic and cultural forces that shape our complex relationship with clothing.

Assignments in the class will include an article review, an annotated bibliography, and a final research project.  This is a hybrid course, which means that significant course work will make use of cyberspace formats including wordpress blogs and wiki technology.

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Framing the Visual World of Shakespeare

Pollack, Rachel
CRN 84857 | Section M45 | MW 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  F 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM
NOTE: Friday classes meet at the Folger Shakespeare Library. See department for details.

“Such was the very armour he had on.” “For the apparel oft proclaims the man.” “I have heard of your paintings too, well enough; God has given you one face, and you make yourselves another.” These three memorable quotations are examples of the importance of appearances in Shakespeare’s oeuvre. Horatio recognizes the king’s ghost by the armor he has on. Polonius gives his son Laertes fatherly advice on how to dress properly during his journey to France. Hamlet admonishes Ophelia for changing her face with cosmetics. Whether it was through armor, flashy clothing or make-up, this world of appearances described by Shakespeare was full of common cultural references which would have been easily understood by a contemporary audience in Shakespeare’s day. The visual world of art and culture in the Shakespearean Age was as rich and complex as Shakespeare’s own poetry and prose.

In this course, we will explore the visual arts created during the Shakespearean Age. From a rich array of mediums spanning Elizabethan and early Jacobean portraiture, book illustrations, tapestries, sculpture, clothing, jewelry, and armor, we will visually reconstruct the world that inspired Shakespeare’s oeuvre. During the first half of the semester, the class will read Shakespeare’s Restless World: A Portrait of an Era in Twenty Objects by Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum. Each student will then select an art object from Shakespeare’s time and write an additional chapter (~8-10 pages) to add to this book. During the latter half of the semester, students then will design in groups of four or five a museum exhibition based on a Shakespearean theme. Each student will select two objects to include in his or her group exhibition and will write a catalogue entry for each object (~2-3 pages each). Finally, each student will individually write an essay (~10 pages) on a topic related to the theme of his or her group exhibition.

Class will frequently meet on Fridays at the National Gallery of Art, Folger Shakespeare Library, and other museums and art collections throughout the Washington Metropolitan area. These field trips are intended to enhance the students’ understanding of the visual arts that shaped Shakespeare’s world.

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Dutch Painting at the National Gallery of Art

Pollack, Rachel
CRN 82607 | Section M59 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM
CRN 88466 | Section M83 | MW 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
NOTE: Friday classes meet at the National Gallery of Art. See department for details.

In this course we will develop writing skills through careful observation and analysis of 17th Century Dutch painting at the National Gallery of Art. Each student will write 2 polished catalogue entries (2-3 pages each) of works from the National Gallery collection, a short exhibition review (3-5 pages), a short research paper (5-7 pages) and a larger research project (15-20 pages). Artists such as Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Frans Hals will be the central focus of class discussion, as well as various landscape and still life masters. We will explore issues of technique (i.e. materials and methods) and art historical interpretations. Why do we consider Rembrandt a "genius?" Did Vermeer use the camera obscura? How did the new wealthy middle class affect art patronage? Together we will read a selection of scholarly articles related to each subject, as well as visiting the museum collection firsthand. Through critical writing, class discussion, and individual research, each student will learn to see and appreciate the art of the Dutch Golden Age.

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Writing Lives: Composing Consciousness and Service Learning

Presser, Pamela
CRN 81745 | Section M47 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
CRN 81649 | Section M60 | TR 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
CRN 81739 | Section M54 | TR 4:10 PM - 5:25 PM F 4:10 PM - 5:00 PM
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; classroom and online instruction. This is a service learning course, for more information see http://serve.gwu.edu/information-students.

To what extent is your sense of self shaped by your culture, circumstances and location? How does where you are living and working influence what you dream? Does performing service, and writing about your experiences, change your ideas about who you are?

Such questions fall within the domain of consciousness studies, an interdisciplinary field which will be the subject of this class. Because consciousness studies in its present incarnation is a new and largely uncharted field, most questions its scholars are asking remain unanswered. This course, then, will be best suited for curious students eager to explore inner and outer space. Indeed, the course requires a willingness to leave the GWU bubble, since students will be required to perform 20 hours of community service off campus, with a non-profit organization.

Assignments may include, but will not be limited to, collaborative projects, an annotated bibliography, a journal in which you engage in meta-cognitive writing, and a final paper combining research on service and consciousness. This is a hybrid class, and will include a significant amount of on-line instruction and discussion. Class texts will be drawn from several genres and will include academic essays, autobiographies, and graphic narratives.

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Songs & Script: Critical Writing About Music

Riley, Matthew
CRN 81742 | Section M69 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
CRN 82575 | Section M71 | TR 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
CRN 82572 | Section M35 | TR 4:10 PM - 5:25 PM F 4:10 PM - 5:00 PM

This course is an ongoing study conducted by first year students about how popular music serves as a reflection of society. We will investigate a variety of ways that music is analyzed and argued about in both popular and academic communities, and we will research the issues about music that we, as a group, consider to be important. "Songs and Script" is based on the idea that students who take the course, past, present, and future, should form a community of scholars who build the course over repeated semesters. Consequently, the issues we address and the knowledge we establish comes equally from the students and the professor, and current students must always build upon the work of previous classes. Further, the course maintains a concentrated focus on different means of analysis. Therefore, not only will students write analytical research essays about critical issues, but they will also participate in several collaborative group projects, including writing, composing, and producing an original song and developing a multimedia presentation that investigates an historically significant music artist. Every assignment will involve research, analysis, argument, and formal expression.

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Darwin's Legacy: Science, Religion, and American Politics

Schell, Heather
CRN 83637 | Section M21 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM
CRN 82424 | Section M10 | TR 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

Darwin's transformative On the Origin of Species shook the world when it was published, not only because it challenged literalist interpretations of the Bible but also because it offered a grim view of what the poet Tennyson termed "nature red in tooth and claw." More than one hundred and fifty years later, long after the rest of the world has come to terms with Darwin's ideas, controversy about evolutionary continues unabated here in the United States. This has shown most clearly in our public school system, where a battle over the right to teach evolutionary theory has been waged since the Scopes Trial of 1925. While evolutionary theory is a fundamental building block of the life sciences today, a sizable group of Americans does not believe that species have evolved and actively campaigns to keep Darwin's ideas out of the science curriculum. This semester, we will look at this war of ideas at the level of writing. We will use techniques of rhetoric analysis to examine the ways in which the players in this ongoing debate frame themselves as authorities, appeal to their audiences, produce evidence, define their terms, and address alternate perspectives. We will also explore the way that contemporary journalistic practice may contribute to public misunderstanding. In your essays this semester, you will explore the use of evolutionary theory in a political debate, critically analyze a scholarly essay, and research the underpinnings of America's uneasy relationship with Darwin.

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 Happily Ever After? Writing About Romantic Comedies

Smith, Caroline
CRN 83329 | Section M68 | TR 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM
CRN 83325 | Section M17 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
CRN 83706 | Section M33 | TR 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; classroom and online instruction.

Girl meets boy. It’s the simple plotline of the incredibly popular genre known as the romantic comedy. In this course, we will explore a select group of contemporary, American romantic comedies and associated readings, examining how these seemingly innocuous films actually reflect a great deal about our current cultural climate. We will consider why – despite their predictable narratives – audiences flock to see these films. We’ll also examine the messages that these films impart to their audiences about gender, race, and class. And, we will consider the ways in which the genre has – or hasn’t – evolved from the early screwball comedies of the Great Depression.

While these movies will serve as the basis of our class discussions, our primary focus will be on how to critically read, research, and write about these films. What observations might we have about these movies? What have other scholars written about these films? What research lenses might we apply to our work in order to enrich it? And, how might we – as writers – effectively convince our audience of these claims. Students will produce a variety of writing assignments, including an independent research project on the topic of their choice. These writing assignments will help students to develop a variety of reading, researching, and writing skills applicable to the remainder of their college career.

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Writing Wellness:  Issues in Health and Medicine

Strong, John
CRN 81650 | Section M62 | MW 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  
CRN 81651 | Section M63 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  
NOTE: This course is a hybrid; in addition to classroom instruction, students are required to participate in course activities for 50 minutes every week in lieu of a Friday class meeting.

From the national debate on healthcare reform, to technological advancements in medicine, to the seemingly straightforward but infinitely complex patient-doctor relationship . . . ethical dilemmas abound in the health field. This course will provide students with hands-on, workshop-intensive guidance on the writing process by way of an investigation into the questions that have shaped and are shaping the future of wellness and medicine in America and throughout the world. We’ll begin by examining pertinent health-related issues in our own community and widen our scope as the semester progresses to consider the many ways our own and others’ health is protected and threatened. Doing so will allow us to develop the vitally interconnected skills of writing, critical thinking, and ethical inquiry. 
Human wellness incorporates a broad range of issues and topics—there are few, if any, serious issues that are not in some way entangled with the health and well-being of those affected—and this wide scope will allow students a significant amount of freedom in what they choose to think and write about. Students will be encouraged, within the scope of the course’s theme, to pursue their own interests and curiosities. Consider the possibilities: the ethics of gene manipulation, the dynamics of medicine in war, representation of illness and/or medicine in art, the intersection of health and environmental ethics, the viability of alternative medicine.  Drawing from both popular and scholarly sources, we’ll read some of the best health-related writing out there—Atul Gawande, Oliver Sacks, Patricia Leigh Brown, Dennis Raphael—in an effort to both broaden our own perspectives on key dilemmas and to gain a reliable understanding of what successful writing in this realm looks like. The semester culminates in a research-intensive writing project that examines some pressing health issue of the student’s choosing.
Extreme Weather, Extreme Politics

Svoboda, Michael
CRN 83638 | Section M19 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
CRN 82111 | Section M24 | TR 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
CRN 82426 | Section M18 | TR 4:10 PM - 5:25 PM F 4:10 PM - 5:00 PM

Americans experience some of the most extreme weather on the planet: droughts, heat-waves, flash floods, hurricanes, tornados, and fierce winter storms. And even before the election of Donald Trump, Americans also experienced some of the most extreme politics on the planet, especially on the issue of climate change. Could the shared suffering inflicted by weather disasters eventually bring Americans together in a collective, bi-partisan effort to face the changing global environment? Or will our divisive politics leave us to weather crises on our own? 

In this class we will work to discover and understand the connections between personal experiences of dramatic events, media coverage of those events, and the political processes by which we decide how to respond to such events. To do this, we will consider natural risks and human choices from multiple perspectives and, in the process, examine the different styles of writing associated with these perspectives. 

Whatever discipline you plan to pursue at GW, you will face the challenges of extreme weather and extreme politics. Prepare for these challenges with the critical thinking, creative research, and reflective writing you will practice in this section of UW 1020.

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Fake News and Ironic Views: Satire as Social Critique

Tomlinson, B.
CRN 82425 | Section M3 | MW 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
CRN 82427 | Section M25 | MW 4:10 PM - 5:25 PM F 4:10 PM - 5:00 PM

While satire has a long history of exposing social/political excess and human folly, never has it been so prevalent as in our current cultural moment. From The Daily Show and The Colbert Report to The Simpsons to the mockumentaries of Sasha Baron Cohen to the controversial Jutland Post Muhammad cartoons, satire is a potent and sometimes dangerous rhetorical tool for illuminating the absurdities of extremist views and partisan propaganda. This course starts with the question of why satire has become such a pervasive phenomenon and then moves towards an exploration of the value of, and potential problems with, satire as a rhetorical lens of social criticism.

This course will include assignments like a self-written and performed satire that critiques a relevant current issue, a rhetorical analysis of a scholarly article on satire, a critical reading of a satirical film or novel, and a capstone research project which will give students a chance to explore in depth a particular example of satire in contemporary culture. In all, this course will make the larger points that the language of satire and irony is our language and that laughter and seriousness are not mutually exclusive.

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The Visual Past: Images in History

Troutman, Phillip
CRN 83636 | Section M27 | MW 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  F 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM
CRN 82919 | Section M29 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM

Images from the past say things. Political cartoons, propaganda posters, paintings, and films obviously interpret, idealize, and shade the truth. But so do photographs, maps, and technical drawings. They even lie outright. From the earliest colonial encounters through slavery and civil rights, from frontier wars through civil wars, foreign wars, and culture wars, people have used images to represent, reinterpret, and reinscribe ideas about race, gender, national identity, class, democratic politics, immigration and migration, science and technology, and religion. But images do not speak for themselves. To write about images requires description, which implies some level of interpretation, or at least translation from visual to verbal. Scholars of visual culture have created specialized terms and concepts you will need to  adopt and adapt in order to do your own analytical work. In this course, you will analyze primary sources from digital archives, engaging in ongoing debates about the roles images have played in history. Researching and writing about images in a scholarly way will help you hone your critical thinking, research, and analytic skills generally. But you will also have to approach image description and analysis with creativity, finding new words and phrases, and new interpretations to rise to the task.

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Composing Disability: Crip Ecologies

Wilkerson, Abby
CRN 82920 | Section M30 | MW 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM  F 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM
CRN 82918 | Section M28 | MW 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
CRN 82431 | Section M22 | MW 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM

This course (like the GWU conference from which it takes its name) brings together work across the fields of ecocriticism, disability, and queer studies. The term “crip” has been widely deployed over the past few decades by radical activists and cultural producers in the global movement for disability justice. “Queer” affirms fluid and non-normative sexual identities. Our goal is to think through the queer interchanges of environments and bodies in radical ways. As vulnerable embodied beings that interact with our environments, we are not only affected by the places we inhabit, but we also leave our imprint on these locations as well. Marginalized subjects, including disabled people, often experience their lives in greater proximity to environmental threats such as toxicity, climate change, generational exposures to unsafe living conditions due to poverty, militarization, body-exhausting labors as in the case of migrant workers, etc. 

This queer/crip/ecological conjunction is a rich site for exploring rhetorical agency—how meanings are created and struggles enacted through language; and how speakers, writers, and all makers of meaning accomplish their goals through persuasion, argument, and expression. Ethnography will serve as a case study in academic writing, and a method of inquiry that grounds our experiences in specific settings—environments and ecologies. Coursework includes (1) reading a variety of queer/crip/ecological texts; (2) studying how academic writing works by analyzing relevant published scholarship; (3) and producing a collaborative ethnographic project and using published scholarship to analyze this material.

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Latinx Identities & Stereotypes in the United States

Yunis, Bernardita
CRN 85180 | Section M64 | MW 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM
CRN 85181 | Section M67 | MW 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM

From Lucy and Ricky Ricardo to the Sofia Vergaras, Gina Rodriguezes, and Salma Hayeks of today, Latinx's in the United States have regularly been the objects of exaggerated representations, commercializing Latinx culture and history for popular consumption. A focus on Latinx identities and stereotypes in the United States will provide an opportunity for practice in the processes and techniques of academic writing that will encourage students to use critical analysis skills and thoughtful evaluation in their writing. Through the use of writing assignments that require creativity and research, this course will help students be critics of the Latinx identities presented by the media and the society at large. Students will create their own testimonios (testimonials/memoirs) and research papers that look at the process of identity creation and how that can quickly devolve to stereotypes and misrepresentations. These projects will give students a platform from which to use critical thinking and researched argumentation in order to shine a light on the inaccuracies and oversimplifications of Latinx stereotypes that develop in our media culture.

The goal is that towards the end of the semester, students will have developed rhetorical strategies and critical analysis skills that will be important tools not only for future academic writing, but also for consuming media and cultural narratives with more awareness and a keen critical eye in their everyday lives.

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Truth and Lies: Documenting American Lives in Writing and Film

Zink, Christine
CRN 83327 | Section M44 | TR 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM  F 11:30 AM - 12:20 PM
CRN 81741 | Section M72 | TR 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM  F 1:00 PM - 1:50 PM
CRN 82428 | Section M2 | TR 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM  F 2:30 PM - 3:20 PM
NOTE: These sections are hybrid; classroom and online instruction. 

“Every fact in my films is true,” documentary filmmaker Michael Moore told Time magazine. While facts are by definition true, he felt the need to clarify, “The opinions in the film are mine. They may not be true, but I think they are.” At first glance, we take for granted that documentary film is straight truth. But on closer look, we learn that most documentarians are quick to acknowledge – and struggle with – the central tensions in their work between fact and fabrication and between the real and its representation on the big screen. 

This course takes as its central texts film documentaries on the American experience that rest with no easy answers. We will examine questions of fair and ethical representation, of substantial research and handling of facts and argument, and of what, in the end, it means to even try to document the truth. These very questions are, indeed, central to good writing work. In this course, you will take on the role as both critical audience and creative auteur to determine what constitutes truth and lies in film and writing alike. The series of writing projects includes a critical review of a contemporary documentary, a scholarly research project, and your own documentary treatment and short film.

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