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Fall 2020 Courses

CTCP 71088: Critical Theory:  Foundations and Practices, GC,Thursdays, 2:00pm-4:00pm, Prof. Leo Coleman, 3 credits. This course is not open to first year students and requires permission from Prof. Brenkman

Every interpretive act requires a set of interpretive standards and assumptions.  To say that an artifact is beautiful, to offer but one example, implies that there is such a thing as beauty, that the critic knows what it is and can identify its constitutive elements in a way that is defensible. “Theory” names the critical sophistication that comes of making the interpretive act knowledgeable and reflexive: carefully to select the lens through which we view a text, to know the clarifying and distorting properties of that lens, and to grind it into a fit for the frames of our own critical and intellectual aims.

The critical enterprise is especially fraught, and so especially fascinating, when it contemplates that genre placing interpretation, choice, and misapprehension at the center of its concerns: tragedy. Throughout the European tradition, tragedy emerges time and again as the most compelling object of philosophically-inflected inquiry into literature.  We shall mirror that focus in this course by looking at philosophical takes on tragedy, and the various critical movements with which they might be associated, ranging from Aristotle, to Hegel, to Nietzsche, to Walter Benjamin, to Julia Kristeva.  The course will end with The Incident at Antioch, a tragedy composed by the most important living philosopher, Alain Badiou.

Students will be responsible for a conference-style presentation, which will give rise to a formal paper and final research paper of approximately sixteen pages.

Cross-listed Courses:

ANTH 70700: Intro to Social Theory, Prof. Gary Wilder, GC, Thursdays, 10:45 A.M. -1:45 P.M., 3 credits (Course open to GC Level 1 Cultural Anthropology & Linguistic Anthropology doctoral students only)

ANTH 72000: Politics and Poetics of Climate Change, Prof. Melissa Checker, GC, Mondays, 4:15 P.M.-6:15 P.M., 3 credits (Cross listed with EES and PSYC)                

ANTH 81500: Anticapitalist Thought & the Politics of Dispossession, Prof. David Harvey and Christopher Loperena, GC, Tuesdays, 4:15 P.M. – 6:15 P.M., 3 credits (Cross listed with EES 79903. Seats are limited.)

ANTH 82000: Spaces of Security: Infrastructure, Governance, and Affect, Prof. Setha Low, GC, Fridays, 11:45 A.M.—1:45 P.M., 3 Credits (Cross-listed with PSYC 80103. Seats are limited)

ART 80010: Empathy Theory from Art Nouveau, Fauvism, Expressionism to the Bauhaus, GC: Wed. 2–4pm, 3 credits, Prof. Romy Golan

CLAS 81800: What is Hellenistic Religion? (Texts, Archaeology, Epigraphy), Prof. Barbara Kowalzig, Wed. 4:15 PM-6:15 PM, 3 credits, NYU, Silver Center, Room 503A

CLAS 81900: Matter and Gender in Classical Antiquity, Prof. Emanuela Bianchi, Wed. 4:55 PM-7:35 PM, COLIT-GA 2502/CLASS-GA 2502, 19 University Place, 318

CL 79500: Theory and Practice of Literary Criticism, GC; Thursdays, 4:15pm-6:15pm, Prof. Bettina Lerner, 4 credits

CL 88500: Gender and Genre: Writing the Self, GC:, Mondays, 2:00pm-4:00pm, Prof. Charity Scribner, 2/4 credits

CL 89100: History of Literary Theory & Criticism I, GC; Tuesdays, 4:15pm-6:15pm, Prof. Andre Aciman, 4 credits

CL 80100/FREN 83000: The Nation and Its Others: France and Frenchness in The Age of Louis XIV, Prof. Domna C. Stanton, Tuesdays, 4:15-6:15 p.m., (CL version of this course, 2/4 credits, FREN version of this course, 3 credits)

ENGL 80600: Orientalism and the Project of Decolonization, Prof. Kandice Chuh, Mondays, 2:00PM – 4:00PM. 2/4 Credits

ENGL 80700: Racial, Religious, and Sexual Queerness in Medieval Literature, Prof. Steven Kruger, Thursdays 11:45AM – 1:45PM, 2/4 Credits

ENGL 86700: Feminism and Globalization, Prof. Sonali Perera, Tuesdays 2:00PM – 4:00PM. 2/4 Credits

FREN 83000/CL 80100: The Nation and its Other: France and Frenchness in the Age of Louis the XIV, Professor Domna Stanton, Tuesday, 4:15-6:15pm, Taught in English (2/4 credits)

HIST 72300: Psychoanalysis and Politics: History and Theory, Professor Dagmar Herzog, Tuesday, 2 PM - 4 PM, 3 credits (Instructor permission is required to enroll in this course. Please write to DHerzog@gc.cuny.edu with a cc to mweber@gc.cuny.edu)

HIST 75200: Slavery and Capitalism, Professor James Oakes, Thursday, 11:45 AM - 1:45 PM, 3 credits

HIST 72800/PSC 71908: Neofascism: from the New Right to the Alt-Right, Professor Richard Wolin, Monday, 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM, 3 credits (Instructor permission is required to enroll in this course. Please write to RWolin@gc.cuny.edu with a cc to mweber@gc.cuny.edu)

HIST 71000/ MALS 78500/ PSC 71902: Comparative Revolutions: From 1688 to the Arab Spring, Professor Helena Rosenblatt, 3 credits, Thursday, 2 PM - 4 PM, Professor Helena Rosenblatt

SPAN 70200: Critical Theory, Prof. Carlos Riobó, GC: Thursday, 4:15 p.m.-6:15 p.m

SPAN 80000: Glottopolitical Approaches to Latin America, Prof. José del Valle, GC: Tuesday, 11:45 a.m.-1:45 p.m.

SPAN 87000: Theorizing Latin American Masculinities, Prof. Silvia Dapía, GC: Monday, 6:30-8:30 p.m.

LING 70100: Introduction to Theoretical Linguistics, Prof. Sam Al Khatib / Jason Kandybowicz, Wednesday, 4:15-6:15pm, 3 credits

MUS 84300: Seminar in Theory: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches to Studying Musical Performance, Prof Johanna Devaney, Mondays, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Room 3491, 3 credits

MUS 71200: Seminar in Ethnomusicology: Research Techniques, Prof Jane Sugarman, Wednesdays, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Room 3389, 3 credits (Prerequisite: Instructor’s permission)

MUS 84200: Seminar in Theory/Analysis: Comparative Analysis, Prof. Kofi Agawu, Thursdays, 10 a.m.- 1 p.m., Room 3491, 3 Credits

MUS 82500: Seminar in Theory: History of Music Theory I, Prof. Ruth DeFord, Fridays, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Room 3389, 3 credits

MUS 88200: Seminar in Ethnomusicology: Sound in Society, Prof. Eliot Bates, Mondays, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m., Room 3389, 3 Credits (Prerequisite: Instructor’s permission)

MUS 85900: Seminar in Music Theory: Adv Schenkerian Analysis, Prof William Rothstein, Wednesdays, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m., Room 3491, 3 credits

PHIL 77600: Philosophy of Motion Pictures, Profs. Carroll & Prinz, Tuesdays, 2:00 P.M. -4:00 P.M., Room TBA, 4 credits

PHIL 77700: Critical Social Theory, Prof. Gould, Tuesdays, 4:15 P.M.-6:15​ P.M., Room TBA, 4 credits

PHIL 76200: Africana Philosophy, Prof. Mills, Mondays, 4:15 P.M. -6:15 P.M., Room TBA, 4 credits

PHIL 76100: Hegel’s “System” of Philosophy, Prof. Nuzzo, Mondays, 11:45 A.M. -1:45 P.M., Room TBA, 4 credits

PSC 71902 (Crosslist with HIST 71000 & IDS MALS 78500): Comparative Revolutions: from the English Revolutions of 1688 to the Arab Spring, Prof. Rosenblatt, Wednesdays, 6:30pm–8:30pm, 3 credits

PSC 71908 (Crosslist HIST. 72800): Neofascism: from the New Right to the Alt-Right, Prof. Wolin, Mondays, 6:30pm–8:30pm, 3 credits

PSC 71904 (Crosslist PHIL 77700): Critical Social Theory, Prof. Gould, Tuesdays, 4:15pm–6:15pm, 3 credits

PSC 80603: Democratic Socialism, Prof. Buck-Morss, Tuesdays, 2:00pm–4:00pm, 4 credits

PSC 80608: Political Theory of Police, Prof. Feldman, Wednesdays, 4:15p.m. -6:15 p.m., 4 credits

PSC 80607: Global Political Thought, Prof. Mehta, Wednesdays, 2:00 p.m.–4:00p.m., 4 credits

SOC 70100: Development of Sociological Theory (Theory I), Prof. Trimbur, Tuesdays, 2:00 P.M.-4:00 P.M., 3 credits.

SOC 85600: Social Movements in Latin America, Prof. Jack Hammond, Thursdays, 2:00-4:00pm, 3 credits

SOC 86800: Culture and Politics, Prof. James M. Jasper, Wednesdays, 4:15-6:15, 3 credits

SOC 84600: Within-National Inequalities: From Pareto to Piketty, Prof. Branko Milanovic, Wednesdays, 6:30-8:30pm, 3 credits

THEA 85700: Contemporary Performance and Public Space, Professor Bertie Ferdman, Wednesdays, 4:15 p.m. – 6:15 p.m.

THEA 86000: Festive and Ritual Performance, Professor Erika Lin, Tuesdays, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

UED 71200 (De)Constructing Black Girlhoods, Prof. Deckman, Tuesdays, 4:15 PM-6:15 PM, 3 Credits

UED 72100 A Critical Exploration of Educational Ideologies, Prof. Gonzalez, Thursdays, 4:15 P.M.- 6:15 P.M., 3 Credits 

UED 71200 Co-constructing Theory with Data in Educational Research, Prof. Collett, Thursdays, 6:30 P.M. – 8:30 P.M., 3 credits

Course Descriptions: 

ANTH 70700: Intro to Social Theory, Prof. Gary Wilder, GC, Thursdays, 10:45 A.M. -1:45 P.M., 3 credits (Course open to GC Level 1 Cultural Anthropology & Linguistic Anthropology doctoral students only)

Course Description TBA


ANTH 72000: Politics and Poetics of Climate Change, Prof. Melissa Checker, GC, Mondays, 4:15 P.M.-6:15 P.M., 3 credits (Cross listed with EES and PSYC)                

This seminar re-considers anthropological approaches to climate change by approaching it from multiple angles. We will draw on oral narratives, literary texts, and social media campaigns as well as political ecology, ethnography, and science and technology studies (STS) to analyze how people respond to, and understand, climate change and environmental risk more generally. We will view climate change not just as a global environmental crisis but as a site of power, politics, and meaning making.           


ANTH 81500: Anticapitalist Thought & the Politics of Dispossession, Prof. David Harvey and Christopher Loperena, GC, Tuesdays, 4:15 P.M. – 6:15 P.M., 3 credits (Cross listed with EES 79903. Seats are limited.)

The corona virus pandemic sweeping the world is revealing much about the vulnerabilities of neoliberal capitalism. This lecture and discussion-based seminar will seek to bring together critical perspectives of political economy, race and gender politics and postcolonial theory in relation to the contemporary crisis. Limited seating for this seminar; ANTH and EES crosslisting. May require instructor approval.

ART 80010: Empathy Theory from Art Nouveau, Fauvism, Expressionism to the Bauhaus, GC: Wed. 2–4pm, 3 credits, Prof. Romy Golan

As Wilhelm Worringer argued in his book of 1908, the two poles of artistic volition—the urge for abstraction (which he related to self-alienation and agoraphobia) and the urge for empathy (Einfuhlung—the desire to project onto the object of perception)—are inextricably linked. From the 1880s to the 1920s, painters, architects, art historians, psychologists, and pedagogues alike were captivated by what has been called Empathy Theory. Providing new ways to think of form and space Empathy Theory crossed both medial and national divides. In the face of encroaching capitalism, it countered the alienation of labor on the assembly line. And yet it also provided, paradoxically, forms of pedagogy where body language was programmed by a series of exercises endlessly rehearsed not so much by the body as on the body with the aim of developing that elusive thing called experience. Primary sources will include: Willhelm Worringer, Heinrich Wöllflin, Aby Warburg, Theodor Lipps, Robert Visher, August Schmarsow, Henri Bergson, Max Weber and others. Secondary sources will include: Zeynep C. Alexander on “kinaesthetic knowing” from Munich Jugendstil architecture to the Bauhaus; Spyros Papapetros on the “animation of the inorganic” 1 from Warburg to Fernand Léger; Deborah Silverman on Art Nouveau in Fin de Siècle France, but also on the specter of the Congo in the whiplashes of Belgian Symbolism; Jean Claude Lebensztejn on the false distinctions between French Fauvism and German Expressionism; Rémi Labrusse, Robin Schuldenfri and others on ornament.


ANTH 82000: Spaces of Security: Infrastructure, Governance, and Affect, Prof. Setha Low, GC, Fridays, 11:45 A.M.—1:45 P.M., 3 Credits (Cross-listed with PSYC 80103. Seats are limited)

Course Description TBA
 

CLAS 81800: What is Hellenistic Religion? (Texts, Archaeology, Epigraphy), Prof. Barbara Kowalzig, Wed. 4:15 PM-6:15 PM, 3 credits, NYU, Silver Center, Room 503A

Course Description TBA
 

CLAS 81900: Matter and Gender in Classical Antiquity, Prof. Emanuela Bianchi, Wed. 4:55 PM-7:35 PM, COLIT-GA 2502/CLASS-GA 2502, 19 University Place, 318

In the face of the rising popularity of “new materialisms,” this class examines the emergence of the notion of “matter” in classical antiquity. In short, matter, from the Latin ‘materia’ (related to mater,mother) is transmitted from Aristotle’s Greek innovation hulê (literally, wood). We will undertake close readings of key ancient primary texts, including various Presocratics, Plato’s Timaeus, Aristotle’s Physics, Metaphysics, and Generation of Animals, and Lucretius’ De Rerum Natura, tracing the discourses of materiality that arise in concert with tropes of sex and gender. The guiding question here is: what can matter’s genealogical ties to the feminine tell us about the materialization of bodies and genders? At the same time, we will attend to the topographies and texture of ancient thinking about nature and materiality more broadly. Alongside a narrative of “emergence” we will also consider hermeneutic questions – what are the ethico-political stakes of a “retrieval” of antiquity and how can we determine our relationship to these distant texts? And how does a consideration of ancient modes of thought help to enrich contemporary discourses of matter and gender? To help orient our study we will draw on contemporary thinkers including Irigaray, Kristeva, Loraux, Sallis, Cavarero, as well as critically engaging Bachofen’s 19th century conception of Mutterrecht. Some background knowledge of psychoanalytic theory is advised, as is knowledge of Greek, however all readings will be in translation.
 

CL 79500: Theory and Practice of Literary Criticism, GC; Thursdays, 4:15pm-6:15pm, Prof. Bettina Lerner, 4 credits

Over the last three decades, the field of Comparative Literature has gone through a period of rapid and radical expansion. What we study as comparatists is commonly (if problematically) held to be world literature, but now also includes a wide array of non-traditional media and new forms of self-expression. At the same time, how we study and interpret these texts has moved away from a well-established hermeneutics of suspicion toward distant, surface, reparative and other forms of reading, while increasingly embracing affects, objects and ecologies that exert significant pressure on discourses of race, gender, and sexuality. What defines the work that comparatists do and how might we continue to think about relationality when faced with modes of storytelling that seem unrelatable, untranslatable or illegible? This course considers what it means to read and write critically as comparatists today by engaging with current debates about the state of the discipline, the fate of the humanities in our universities, and the place and purpose of criticism and interpretation in our social and political landscapes as a whole. Through its written assignments and oral presentations, it also provides a space from within which to practice some of the key rhetorical exercises that have become, for better or worse, the benchmarks of professionalization including abstracts, conference presentations, project proposals, and a 20-25 page paper.
 

CL 88500: Gender and Genre: Writing the Self, GC:, Mondays, 2:00pm-4:00pm, Prof. Charity Scribner, 2/4 credits
The question of autofiction has become dominant in the study of contemporary literature and culture, and it is particularly germane to the subject of gender.  Writing of the self spans from autobiography to the novel, crossing into the subgenres of the memoir and the roman à clef.  Its production establishes an interplay between the documentary and the aesthetic; its critique analyzes the dialectic between authority, authorship, and identity.  This seminar reads these literary forms together in order to open new lines of inquiry into sexual politics.  Beginning with psychoanalysis, the course puts a German accent on signal moments of European modernity, from the late eighteenth century to the present.  They include:  masterworks by Goethe, Proust, Kafka, and Nabokov; experiments in political philosophy (Rousseau, Engels, Hitler, Butler); modern and contemporary literary fiction (Beauvoir, Handke, Sebald, Cusk, Knausgaard); and autotheory (Woolf, Barthes, Cixous, Nelson).  Focusing on the body in time, the seminar also considers the relationship of autofiction to recent tendencies in cinema and performance art.
 

CL 89100: History of Literary Theory & Criticism I, GC; Tuesdays, 4:15pm-6:15pm, Prof. Andre Aciman, 4 credits

With readings from Plato, Aristotle, and Longinus to Dante, Sidney, Boileau, Dryden, and Lessing, this course will examine the history and evolution of literary theory in the classical, medieval, and early modern periods. It will also examine such fundamental terms as truth, beauty, nature, and artifact with which pre-Romantic Western critics have attempted to understand literary works of art. This course will also explore the legacy and limitations of these and other terms and their impact on criticism today.
 

CL 80100/FREN 83000: The Nation and Its Others: France and Frenchness in The Age of Louis XIV, Prof. Domna C. Stanton, Tuesdays, 4:15-6:15 p.m., (CL version of this course, 2/4 credits, FREN version of this course, 3 credits) (Course taught in English)

This course will begin by questioning the view that the nation is born after l789. We will consider a set of criteria for nationhood and examine the efforts of Louis XIV and his ministers to transform France into a nation state with one monarch, one law and one faith; a centralized political and cultural structure; physical boundaries/borders, and a dominating linguistic idiom.

However, our principal focus will be the idea that a nation forges an inside by creating an outside, that is, by excluding a set of groups or people. To be sure, that enterprise is doomed to fail since the outside (the other) invariably mixes with or constitutes the necessary supplement to the inside, contrary to proclaimed ideology.  Moreover, in late 17th-century France, even insiders, such as members of the noblesse d’épée, felt marginalized in an absolutistic monarchy, and invoked the idea of the nation over and against tyrannical Louis XIV.

The seminar will be devoted to considering five different others: the others within – a religious other (Jews); the gendered other (women); a sexual other (the sodomite) in a nation of reputedly virile Franks. The two others outside we will study are the oriental/Ottoman Turk; and the African slave transported to the French Caribbean.

Readings will include work on the nation by Anderson, Foucault and Balibar; on the early modern nation by Hampton, Bell, Sahlins and Yardeni;  historical documents, such as Salic Law and the Black Code; and primary readings by Corneille, Molière, Louis XIV, Perrault, Picard, Racine, Saint Simon;  Prideaux, Baudier and Tavernier on the Ottomans; Dufour, du Tertre, and Labat on slaves; and relevant critical texts.

Over and beyond readings and class participation, work for the course will include a presentation in class on a primary text. Those taking the course for 4 credits will also produce a 25-page research paper on some aspect of early-modern nationhood and othering to be determined in consultation with the instructor. For those taking the course for 3 credits, the paper will be no longer than 10-13 pp. Those taking the course for two credits will prepare a written version of the presentation they do in class (5-7 pp.). All students will take the final exam.

For any questions, please contact Domna Stanton (dstanton112@yahoo.com)

 

ENGL 80600: Orientalism and the Project of Decolonization, Prof. Kandice Chuh, Mondays, 2:00PM – 4:00PM. 2/4 Credits

Since the publication of Edward Said’s Orientalism in 1978, orientalism has served as a key concept across a wide variety of fields and discourses.  Afro-Orientalism, Techno-orientalism, Cold War orientalism, American orientalism, and even Asian orientalism are formulations peppering the contemporary critical landscape.  In this class, we’ll survey this range of formulations and the formations out of which they emerge, with an eye toward apprehending the heterogeneity of critical, political, and aesthetic valences of these various invocations of orientalism.  How do these formulations of orientalism engage the broad project of the address of coloniality, or in other words, the project of decolonization?  In what ways are de-orientalization and decolonization aligned and not?  What kinds of geographies and temporalities are implied or produced by both orientalist discourses and efforts to defunction them?  These are some of the key questions motivating and organizing this course.

Those enrolling in this course will please read Edward Said’s Orientalism in preparation for the first class meeting.  Students should expect substantial reading loads in this discussion driven course.  Those enrolled for 2 credits will be asked to write short essays or the equivalent to fulfill the writing requirements of the course.  Students registered for 4 credits will be asked to produce a seminar project in addition to these short essays.  No auditors, please.

 

ENGL 80700: Racial, Religious, and Sexual Queerness in Medieval Literature, Prof. Steven Kruger, Thursdays 11:45AM – 1:45PM, 2/4 Credits

Medieval religious difference often involves constructions that, in modernity, might be thought of as more strictly racial. When the Muslim Sultan in the Middle English King of Tars converts to Christianity, his black skin becomes white. And boundaries between religious-racial communities are often policed through the categories of gender and sexuality. Canon law prohibits intermarriage, and it insists that Christian families not employ Jewish or Muslim nursemaids. From at least the thirteenth century on, Jewish and Christian masculinities are sharply differentiated from each other, with (for instance) a myth of Jewish male menstruation and/or anal bleeding being one strong way in which Christian and Jewish bodies are kept ideologically separate. “Sodomy,” too, is often strongly associated with racial-religious others—Mongols, Jews, Muslims, heretics.

In this course, our readings will focus on how racial, religious, gender, and sexual differences—and their intersections—are represented in (mostly) English texts of the Middle Ages. Readings will be drawn from a wide range of writers and works—for example, Marie de France, Chaucer, Gower, Lydgate, Henryson, Christine de Pisan, Malory, The King of Tars, The Croxton Play of the Sacrament, Mandeville’s Travels. Alongside such primary texts, we will read queer, postcolonial, and critical race theory, and recent medievalist work that explicitly takes up such theory in its analysis of medieval culture. And we will read at least one post-medieval text (Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida? Octavia Butler’s science fiction? Ishiguro’s the Buried Giant?), to consider how the medieval constructions we have been analyzing are taken up and modified in later literature.

Students will present orally as part of the seminar structure. Those taking the course for 4 credits will pursue a semester-long writing project. First-year students in the English program will have the opportunity to use the writing project to work on one element of their first-examination portfolios.
 

ENGL 86700: Feminism and Globalization, Prof. Sonali Perera, Tuesdays 2:00PM – 4:00PM. 2/4 Credits

A significant document in the official annals of globalization and development, the 1980 Brandt Report titled North-South: A Program for Survival maps the world in the simplest, starkest terms—divided between the rich nations (the North) and the poor (the South). In his concluding reflections to Culture and Imperialism, Edward Said, among other critics, finds such “global thinking” to be reductionist—if well intentioned—unwittingly reifying the very terms it proposes, in the name of poverty alleviation, to erase. And yet, beyond the Brandt Report, “the global South” retains value as an interpretative framework—as a metaphor or strategy, rather than precisely demarcated territory—for Marxist, and especially Marxist-feminist writers and theorists across the international division of labor. Antonio Gramsci called our attention to the “Southern Question.” How is the (global) “Southern question” negotiated in our age of globalization and food insecurity? What is at stake in making claims for feminism predicated not on comfortable solidarities, but based on an avowal of difference?

In this class we will enter into the debates on gender and globalization by focusing on the texts of feminist, counter-globalist, and anti-colonial writers and theorists of the Global South. We will also read a range of interdisciplinary material drawing from examples of working-class literature, subaltern studies, Marxist theory, feminist theory, activist journalism as well as selected UN and World Bank documents. While texts from the global South provide us with our departure point, we will constantly place these writings in conversation with a range of theorists of neoliberalism and globalization. How do feminist cartographies of labor complicate the North-South divide? What might feminism as both a social movement and as knowledge-politics have to teach us about institutionalized concepts of “comparative racialization” and “critical regionalism”? What ethical models of socialized labor—of “an impossible un-divided world,” of “fractured togetherness”—are represented in the literature of labor and of radical ecology? What does it mean to invoke “working-class literature” in an age of outsourcing and neoliberal scarcity? These are some of the questions that I hope will direct our inquiries over the course of the semester. Literary texts may include works by Bessie Head, Tayeb Salih, Tillie Olsen, Diamela Eltit, Mahasweta Devi, Toni Morrison, Gloria Anzaldua, Valeria Luiselli, Lynn Nottage, Saidiya Hartman, Nuruddin Farah, and Arundhati Roy. Theory texts may include writings by Karl Marx, Antonio Gramsci, Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Angela Davis, Hortense Spillers, David Harvey, Michael Hardt, Antonio Negri, Silvia Federici, Kathi Weeks, Arturo Escobar, Maria Josefina Saldaña-Portillo, Lila Abu-Lughod, Chandra Mohanty, Chela Sandoval, Sara Ahmed, Sarah Brouillette, Aren Aizura, Lisa Lowe, Ruth Wilson Gilmore, and Sylvia Wynter. (Where time permits, we may also consider shifts in framework and nomenclature put forward in the recent Progress of the World’s Women UN Report: Transforming Economies, Realizing Rights.)

Course Requirements:

1.) A 10 minute oral presentation on one or two of the weekly readings.*

2.)  A 2 page prospectus for the final paper.

3.) A 15-20 page final paper.

4.) Engaged class participation.

*Serving as a respondent to a presenter: In addition to signing up for your own presentation, you must also select a date where you will serve as respondent to a presenter.
 

FREN 83000/CL 80100: The Nation and its Other: France and Frenchness in the Age of Louis the XIV, Professor Domna Stanton, Tuesday, 4:15-6:15pm, Taught in English (2/4 credits)

This course will begin by questioning the view that the nation is born after l789. We will consider a set of criteria for nationhood and examine the efforts of Louis XIV and his ministers to transform France into a nation state with one monarch, one law and one faith; a centralized political and cultural structure; physical boundaries/borders, and a dominating linguistic idiom.

However, our principal focus will be the idea that a nation forges an inside by creating an outside, that is, by excluding a set of groups or people. To be sure, that enterprise is doomed to fail since the outside (the other) invariably mixes with or constitutes the necessary supplement to the inside, contrary to proclaimed ideology.  Moreover, in late 17th-century France, even insiders, such as members of the  noblesse d’épée, felt marginalized in an absolutistic monarchy, and invoked the idea of the nation over and against tyrannical Louis XIV.

The seminar will be devoted to considering five different others: the others within – a religious other (Jews); the gendered other (women); a sexual other (the sodomite) in a nation of reputedly virile Franks. The two others outside we will study are the oriental/Ottoman Turk; and the African slave transported to the French Caribbean.

Readings will include work on the nation by Anderson, Foucault and Balibar; on the early modern nation by Hampton, Bell, Sahlins and Yardeni;  historical documents, such as Salic Law and the Black Code; and primary readings by Corneille, Molière, Louis XIV, Perrault, Picard, Racine, Saint Simon;  Prideaux, Baudier and Tavernier on the Ottomans; Dufour, du Tertre, and Labat on slaves; and relevant critical texts.

Over and beyond readings and class participation, work for the course will include a presentation in class on a primary text. Those taking the course for 4 credits will also produce a 25-page research paper on some aspect of early-modern nationhood and othering to be determined in consultation with the instructor. For those taking the course for 3 credits, the paper will be no longer than 10-13 pp. Those taking the course for two credits will prepare a written version of the presentation they do in class (5-7 pp.). All students will take the final exam.

For any questions, please contact Domna Stanton (dstanton112@yahoo.com)
 

HIST 72300: Psychoanalysis and Politics: History and Theory, Professor Dagmar Herzog, Tuesday, 2 PM - 4 PM, 3 credits (Instructor permission is required to enroll in this course. Please write to DHerzog@gc.cuny.edu with a cc to mweber@gc.cuny.edu)

This is a course in intellectual history and theory; but it is also, and above all, a course in the history of ideas about human selfhood, motivation, and behavior – and the endless mystery of the relationships between fantasy and reality. The course arcs from Freud’s and his contemporaries’ writings in the 1890s-1930s through WW2, Cold War and decolonization to the post-postmodern present. Themes explored include: trauma, aggression, anxiety, destruction, and prejudice; obsession, love, desire, pleasure, attachment, dependency; models of selfhood (conflict vs. deficit vs. chaos), compulsion, neurosis, perversion, narcissism, psychosis; therapy, including neutrality, interpretation, holding, transference, and countertransference; and the myriad relationships of psychoanalysis to politics. Most of the texts focus on Europe and the U.S., but we will explore as well examples from the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America.

Our aim is not only to acquire a deepened understanding of the interactions between individual subjectivities, social conditions, and ideological formations (and to consider how psychoanalysis-inspired commentators have theorized these interactions), but to inquire into whether and, if so, how the mechanisms of these interactions may perhaps themselves have changed over time (and this will require situating the assigned texts contextually, but also often reading them against their own grain).

Requirements include careful reading of assigned materials and active and informed participation in class discussions; one final paper on a psychoanalysis-related topic relevant to the student’s dissertation or related intellectual development. The final week is reserved for student presentations to the class; drafts will be circulated ahead of time; students are expected to provide helpful written responses to their peers.
 

HIST 75200: Slavery and Capitalism, Professor James Oakes, Thursday, 11:45 AM - 1:45 PM, 3 credits

No scholar seriously doubts that there was a strong relationship between the development of capitalism and the emergence of New World slave plantations.  Where they disagree is over the nature of that relationship.  Was slavery itself a form of capitalism, or was the master-slave relationship fundamentally different from capitalist social relations?  Did slavery give rise to capitalism, or did capitalism give rise to slavery?  This course will address these questions, beginning with a survey of the way scholars have addressed them.  Then, with a particular focus on the United States, we will address the theoretical and empirical question of whether the slave economy of the Old South was or was not capitalist.  Finally, we will shift to the very different question of the relationship between southern slavery, especially the cotton economy, and the industrialization of the North.

Tentative Readings:

Eric Williams, Slavery and Capitalism

Seymour Drescher, Econocide

Robin Blackburn,

Sidney Mintz, Sweetness and Power

Eugene D. Genovese, Fruits of Merchant Capital

Robert Fogel
 

HIST 72800/PSC 71908: Neofascism: from the New Right to the Alt-Right, Professor Richard Wolin, Monday, 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM, 3 credits (Instructor permission is required to enroll in this course. Please write to RWolin@gc.cuny.edu with a cc to mweber@gc.cuny.edu)

How did the far-right reestablish political legitimacy after its crushing defeat in 1945? How did it recertify the discredited ideas of race, hierarchy, anti-parliamentarism, autocracy, and patriarchy after seemingly hitting rock bottom? To what extent – and by what methods –   have its efforts to counteract the intellectual hegemony of left-wing thought by popularizing a “Gramscism of the right” been successful? To what extent have New Right ideas influenced the political self-understanding of the leading authoritarian populist parties, whose proliferation has been one of the hallmarks of twenty-first century global politics? Finally, to what extent have the depredations of “neo-liberalism” prepared the terrain for the New Right’s success?

Here, it is worth noting that the slogan, the “Great Replacement,” which was invoked by the mass murderers in Utoya, Norway, Christ Church, NZ, El Paso, and Pittsburgh, was originally a New Right slogan.

One explanation for the New Right’s success pertains to its successful rehabilitation of German conservative revolutionary thought from the 1920s: the political doctrines of Carl Schmitt, Martin Heidegger, Oswald Spengler, etc., while cleansing their work of its ties to Nazism.

Finally, at what point in time did the New Right worldview cross the Atlantic to provide ideological support for the Alt-Right? In what ways do the New Right and the Alt-Right differ from the traditional Right?  Did the Alt-Right contribute to Donald Trump’s victory in the 2016 presidential election? Is the Alt-Right still a force in contemporary American politics, or was it merely a passing political fad?

Readings:

C. Schmitt, The Crisis of Parliamentary Democracy

M. Heidegger, Nature, History, and State

A. de Benoist, View from the Right

A. Dugin, The Fourth Political Theory

T. Bar-On, Where Have All the Fascists Gone?

Y. Camus and N. Lebourg, Far-Right Politics in Europe

Woods, Germany’s New Right as Culture and as Politics

K. Belew, Bring the War Home: The White Power Movement

T. Mann, The Rise of the Alt-Right

Boggs, Fascism: Old and New
 

HIST 71000/ MALS 78500/ PSC 71902: Comparative Revolutions: From 1688 to the Arab Spring, Professor Helena Rosenblatt, 3 credits, Thursday, 2 PM - 4 PM, Professor Helena Rosenblatt

What makes a revolution a revolution? Scholarship has recently moved away from social-scientific, Marxist-inspired explanations to approaches that explore how revolutionaries themselves understood what they were doing, how they interpreted their contexts, and how their ideas shaped their actions. With such questions in mind, we will look at and compare a number of revolutions, including the so-called “Glorious Revolution” of 1688, the American, French and Haitian Revolutions, the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the recent Arab Spring. In the eyes of their participants, what characteristics did these revolutions share? What might they have learned and borrowed from each other? Is there something we can call a revolutionary “script”?
 

SPAN 70200: Critical Theory, Prof. Carlos Riobó, GC: Thursday, 4:15 p.m. -6:15 p.m

Students will be introduced to the main concepts, debates, and currents within contemporary theory central to the study of literary texts and other cultural objects. We will discuss and contextualize the latest developments with regard to Memory and Human Rights, Performance and Subjectivity, Empire and Coloniality, and State and Nation--the four critical areas of our graduate program’s required First Examination--exploring the fundamental assumptions at stake. Our studies may include theorists and thinkers such as Giorgio Agamben, Linda Alcoff, Aleida Assmann, Judith Butler, Enrique Dussel, Roberto González Echevarría, Marianne Hirsch, Pierre Nora, Anibal Quijano, Edward Said, Gayatri Spivak, and Diana Taylor, among others. We will use Latin American literary texts and other cultural objects to test the theories under discussion. The course attempts to give students the tools to continue their own explorations in this field of study. 

SPAN 80000: Glottopolitical Approaches to Latin America, Prof. José del Valle, GC: Tuesday, 11:45 a.m.-1:45 p.m.

In this seminar, we will examine the theoretical and methodological underpinnings of glottopolitical studies. We will follow the pathway drawn by works such as Guespin / Marcellesi (1986), Elvira Arnoux (2000), Burke, Crowley / Girvin (2000), Joseph (2006), Del Valle (2007 y 2013), Del Valle / Arnoux (2010), Arnoux / Nothstein (2013) in order to examine how research in the humanities and social sciences may benefit from taking a glottopolitical perspective on society and social change. The seminar will focus on Latin America (though we will make some incursions into the US and Spain) in order to identify and analyze the glottopolitical dimensions of phenomena such as the spread of neoliberalism, neo-nationalism and neo-colonialism, processes of regional integration, the political activation of indigenous cultures, the advancement of feminism, and the tactics of social revolt against capitalism.

 

SPAN 87000: Theorizing Latin American Masculinities, Prof. Silvia Dapía, GC: Monday, 6:30-8:30 p.m.

Framed within new materialism, posthumanism and the affective turn, we will study diverse theoretical approaches to masculinity informed by feminist, queer and other critical gender scholarship (Amícola, Archetti, Bourdieu, Connell, Foucault, Halberstam, Kiesling, Molloy, Mosse, Muñoz, Preciado, Reeser, Rocha, Salessi, Sedgwick, Sifuentes-

Jáuregui, Viveros-Vigoya, etc). Within this framework we will explore young masculinities, fatherhood, rural masculinities, military masculinities, revolutionary masculinities, gay masculinities, and trans masculinities, among others—all of them complicated by race, class, and sexuality—as they appear in 20th and 21st century Cuban and Argentine works of literature and visual culture. We will discuss the transformation of “el hombre nuevo” as a normative notion of heterosexual masculinity in the works of Edmundo Desnoes, Abel González Melo, Tomás Gutiérrez Alea, Eduardo Heras León, Senel Paz, and Virgilio Piñera, while the works of César Aira, Gabriela Cabezón Cámara, Copi, Witold Gombrowicz, Osvaldo Lamborghini, among others, will serve as the basis for an investigation of problematic masculinities. In addition, tango lyrics and films such as De cierta manera by Sara Gómez (1997) and Memorias del Desarrollo (2000) by Miguel Coyula will also be discussed.

LING 70100: Introduction to Theoretical Linguistics, Prof. Sam Al Khatib / Jason Kandybowicz, Wednesday, 4:15-6:15pm, 3 credits
 
Led by Carolina Fraga
 
Course Description TBA
 

MUS 84300: Seminar in Theory: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches to Studying Musical Performance, Prof Johanna Devaney, Mondays, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Room 3491, 3 credits

Course Description TBA
 

MUS 71200: Seminar in Ethnomusicology: Research Techniques, Prof Jane Sugarman, Wednesdays, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Room 3389, 3 credits (Prerequisite: Instructor’s permission)

Course Description TBA
 

MUS 84200: Seminar in Theory/Analysis: Comparative Analysis, Prof. Kofi Agawu, Thursdays, 10 a.m.- 1 p.m., Room 3491, 3 Credits

 Course Description TBA
 

MUS 82500: Seminar in Theory: History of Music Theory I, Prof. Ruth DeFord, Fridays, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Room 3389, 3 credits

Course Description TBA
 

MUS 88200: Seminar in Ethnomusicology: Sound in Society, Prof. Eliot Bates, Mondays, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m., Room 3389, 3 Credits (Prerequisite: Instructor’s permission)

Course Description TBA
 

MUS 85900: Seminar in Music Theory: Adv Schenkerian Analysis, Prof William Rothstein, Wednesdays, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m., Room 3491, 3 credits

Course Description TBA

PHIL 77600: Philosophy of Motion Pictures, Profs. Carroll & Prinz, Tuesdays, 2:00 P.M. -4:00 P.M., Room TBA, 4 credits

In the PHILOSOPHY OF MOTION PICTURES we will canvass major topics in the field; these may include: the ontology of motion pictures (including television and video); the question of medium specificity; the objectivity of nonfiction cinema; the nature of the motion picture image; how emotions are conveyed and aroused in motion pictures (including the role of attention); motion picture narration; motion pictures and morality (including questions of race and gender, the attraction to villains and antiheroes, and the impact of violence); cultural differences in motion pictures; motion pictures as art; the philosophy of video games; the relation of philosophy and motion pictures; and evaluating the moving image. The course has no prerequisites. The course requirement is a research paper due at the end of the semester.

PHIL 77700: Critical Social Theory, Prof. Gould, Tuesdays, 4:15 P.M.-6:15​ P.M, Room TBA, 4 credits
 
Theorists across various traditions have put forward critical perspectives to disarm or deconstruct oppressive modes of theory and practice. Constructively, they have sought forms of knowledge with an “emancipatory” dimension, which is in accordance with positive norms like justice or equal freedom and undistorted by the ideas and interests of powerful economic or social agents or institutions. However, the notion of what is “critical,” or what is involved in offering an effective critique, has remained insufficiently analyzed. Efforts to embed knowledge and norms in social and historical contexts pose philosophical challenges of their own, such as how to avoid having normative critiques devolve into mere historicism or relativism.

This seminar will explore the notion of critique and attempt to achieve some clarity on the parameters of critical social theory: first, by considering the origins of this project in Marx’s dialectical method, its development in Lukacs and Gramsci (in regard to ideology and power), and in the critical theory of Horkheimer, Marcuse, and the early Habermas, and more recently in Jaeggi. We will go on to consider the distinctive approach to revolution and critique found in Arendt, and the original features introduced by feminist thought, especially by standpoint theory (Hartsock et al), along with the provocations of Foucault and the recent call to “decolonize” theory by Allen. Contemporary efforts in analytic political philosophy to appeal to nonideal theory instead of, or in addition to, ideal theory also bear scrutiny. As we proceed, we can consider some possibilities for integrating these diverse approaches in new ways. The course will then turn to a focus on how norms and forms of knowledge emerge and change with transformations in social practices (Wartofsky), as an enterprise of political and historical epistemology (beyond existing social epistemologies). Through all these various analyses, we will explicitly confront the questions of how normativity can persist without wholly devolving to social context, and also how we can develop critical perspectives while avoiding imperialist critiques from above.

Finally, the course will take up three current practical challenges as test cases for effective social theoretical response. The first concerns the need for a critical democratic theory that takes the political economy of capitalism seriously, investigating how economic and political power can distort or diminish democracy (Gould), and relatedly how to make room for oppositional consciousness (Mansbridge), counterpower, and resistance. The second challenge arises in regard to the cross-cultural understanding and critique of practices confronting women (from femicide to sex trafficking to the #MeToo movement), where deference to those affected is obviously important but insufficient for social and political transformation. A final issue is how to differentiate negative uses of solidarity, as in contemporary white supremacist and nationalist movements, from the constructive solidarities that may characterize liberatory social movements, as in the cases of mutual aid efforts in the United States and refugee support networks in southern Europe and elsewhere.
Throughout the seminar, students will be encouraged to relate the course materials to their ongoing research through an oral presentation and an analytical term paper and will be expected to be active participants in class discussions.

PHIL 76200: Africana Philosophy, Prof. Mills, Mondays, 4:15 P.M. -6:15 P.M., Room TBA, 4 credits
 
“Africana Philosophy” is the term that has been coined to designate philosophy in Africa and the African Diaspora (primarily the Caribbean and the two Americas, North and South, but in principle extending to Europe and Asia also), both in the pre-modern and modern periods. In modernity, this philosophy will be fundamentally shaped by the experience of transnational racial subordination: racial chattel slavery in the Atlantic world, colonialism, and then continuing diasporic racial oppression in nominally post-slavery and post-colonial societies. Thus, it is arguably in modernity that a subset of Africana Philosophy becomes “Black” Philosophy. As such, black philosophers have played a crucial role in pioneering what is now known as Critical Philosophy of Race: the philosophical examination of race from a “critical,” anti-racist perspective. This course will focus on modern Africana Philosophy, as it has developed over the past few hundred years, looking at classic figures from the past (Quobna Ottobah Cugoano, Frederick Douglass, W.E.B. Du Bois, Ida B. Wells, and others) as well as contemporary thinkers of the present, as they have grappled with both traditional and non-traditional philosophical questions arising from the challenge of understanding modern society’s actual social ontology, dealing with existential trauma, developing an emancipatory political theory, and formulating appropriate epistemologies, ethics, and aesthetics for a racialized world.

PHIL 76100: Hegel’s “System” of Philosophy, Prof. Nuzzo, Mondays, 11:45 A.M. -1:45 P.M., Room TBA, 4 credits

The course offers an introduction to Hegel's idea of philosophy as "system." We will study his "dialectic" as the "method" responsible for articulating the "system" of philosophy in the Logic, the Philosophy of Nature, and the Philosophy of Spirit. The course will be based on close readings of selections from the Phenomenology of Spirit, the Logic, the Philosophy of Spirit (Encyclopedia), and the Lectures on Aesthetics and the History of Philosophy.
 

PSC 71902 (Crosslist with HIST 71000 & IDS MALS 78500): Comparative Revolutions: from the English Revolutions of 1688 to the Arab Spring, Prof. Rosenblatt, Wednesdays, 6:30pm–8:30pm, 3 credits

What makes a revolution a revolution? Scholarship has recently moved away from social-scientific, Marxist-inspired explanations to approaches that explore how revolutionaries themselves understood what they were doing, how they interpreted their contexts, and how their ideas shaped their actions. With such questions in mind, we will look at and compare a number of revolutions, including the so-called “Glorious Revolution” of 1688, the American, French and Haitian Revolutions, the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the recent Arab Spring. In the eyes of their participants, what characteristics did these revolutions share? What might they have learned and borrowed from each other? Is there something we can call a revolutionary “script”?

 

PSC 71908 (Crosslist HIST. 72800): Neofascism: from the New Right to the Alt-Right,Prof. Wolin, Mondays, 6:30pm–8:30pm, 3 credits

How did the far-right reestablish political legitimacy after its crushing defeat in 1945? How did it recertify the discredited ideas of race, hierarchy, anti-parliamentarism, autocracy, and patriarchy after seemingly hitting rock bottom? To what extent – and by what methods – have its efforts to counteract the intellectual hegemony of left-wing thought by popularizing a “Gramscism of the right” been successful? To what extent have New Right ideas influenced the political self-understanding of the leading authoritarian populist parties, whose proliferation has been one of the hallmarks of twenty-first century global politics? Finally, to what extent have the depredations of “neo-liberalism” prepared the terrain for the New Right’s success?

Here, it is worth noting that the slogan, the “Great Replacement,” which was invoked by the mass murderers in Utoya, Norway, Christ Church, NZ, El Paso, and Pittsburgh, was originally a New Right slogan. One explanation for the New Right’s success pertains to its successful rehabilitation of German conservative revolutionary thought from the 1920s: the political doctrines of Carl Schmitt, Martin Heidegger, Oswald Spengler, etc., while cleansing their work of its ties to Nazism. Finally, at what point in time did the New Right worldview cross the Atlantic to provide ideological support for the Alt-Right? In what ways do the New Right and the Alt-Right differ from the traditional Right? Did the Alt-Right contribute to Donald Trump’s victory in the 2016 presidential election? Is the Alt-Right still a force in contemporary American politics, or was it merely a passing political fad?
 

PSC 71904 (Crosslist PHIL 77700): Critical Social Theory, Prof. Gould, Tuesdays, 4:15pm–6:15pm, 3 credits

Course Description: This seminar will explore the notion of critique and attempt to achieve some clarity on the parameters of critical social theory: first, by considering the origins of this project in Marx’s dialectical method, its development in Lukacs and Gramsci (in regard to ideology and power), and in the critical theory of Horkheimer, Marcuse, and the early Habermas, and more recently in Jaeggi. We will go on to consider the distinctive approach to revolution and critique found in Arendt, and the original features introduced by feminist thought, especially by standpoint theory (Hartsock et al), along with the provocations of Foucault and the recent call to “decolonize” theory by Allen. Contemporary efforts in analytic political philosophy to appeal to nonideal theory instead of, or in addition to, ideal theory also bear scrutiny. As we proceed, we can consider some possibilities for integrating these diverse approaches in new ways. The course will then turn to a focus on how norms and forms of knowledge emerge and change with transformations in social practices (Wartofsky), as an enterprise of political and historical epistemology (beyond existing social epistemologies). Through all these various analyses, we will explicitly confront the questions of how normativity can persist without wholly devolving to social context, and also how we can develop critical perspectives while avoiding imperialist critiques from above.

Finally, the course will take up three current practical challenges as test cases for effective social theoretical response. The first concerns the need for a critical democratic theory that takes the political economy of capitalism seriously, investigating how economic and political power can distort or diminish democracy (Gould), and relatedly how to make room for oppositional consciousness (Mansbridge), counterpower, and resistance. The second challenge arises in regard to the cross-cultural understanding and critique of practices confronting women (from femicide to sex trafficking to the #MeToo movement), where deference to those affected is obviously important but insufficient for social and political transformation. A final issue is how to differentiate negative uses of solidarity, as in contemporary white supremacist and nationalist movements, from the constructive solidarities that may characterize liberatory social movements, as in the cases of mutual aid efforts in the United States and refugee support networks in southern Europe and elsewhere. Throughout the seminar, students will be encouraged to relate the course materials to their ongoing research through an oral presentation and an analytical term paper and will be expected to be active participants in class discussions.

 

PSC 80603: Democratic Socialism, Prof. Buck-Morss, Tuesdays, 2:00pm–4:00pm, 4 credits

Course Description: This seminar focuses on Democratic Socialism as it is understood today. In this election year, we will consider not only what it means as policy, but also how to get there. What does socialism have to do with freedom? If socialism necessitates equality (of classes, races, genders), how is equality to be democratically achieved? Is revolution meaningful in this context? What is the role of social movements and/or political parties? What is the role of self-interest? Class interest? Disinterest? Is the overthrow of capitalism necessary for democratic socialist goals? How does one educate for socialism? What has art/music/performance to do with democratic socialism, and how do internet practices and (social) media become its ally? How does the aesthetic avant-garde relate to the political vanguard? What is the role of legislation for democratic socialism? Green new deal? Universal health care? Food Security? How does democratic socialism respond to national borders vs. open borders? What is socialist trans-national solidarity? What is democratic socialism’s response to the actuality of global pandemics?

Topics include: State socialism; anarcho-socialism; socialism as social justice; socialism as the antidote to neo-liberalism; socialism as ownership of the means of production; surveillance and socialism; media and mediations; cultural Marxism and its critics.

Readings include: Thucydides on civil war; Georg Lukács on class consciousness; Judith Butler on Assemblage; Jodi Dean on Crowds and Party; Naomi Klein on Corona Capitalism. And much more.
 

PSC 80608: Political Theory of Police, Prof. Feldman, Wednesdays, 4:15p.m. -6:15 p.m., 4 credits

Course Description: This course will explore both how police is conceptualized in different approaches to political theory, and how different theoretical traditions can contribute to an understanding of institutionalized police forces. Topics will include: the extent to which police constitutes a distinct kind of power and formation of state violence, deeply implicated in social hierarchies; policing’s relation to the institutions, norms and practices of law, of democracy and of war; the “procedural justice” approach to police reform; and the police abolition movement. We will examine some foundational accounts of police power broadly construed, including work by Michel Foucault and the “new police science”, recent studies of the transnational nexus of war/police/counter-insurgency within US empire, normative democratic theory work on deliberative encounters between officers and members of the public, and contemporary political theory work on police and other street-level bureaucrats incorporating ethnographic methods. This is a research seminar, and students will complete a semester-long research project. Grades will be based on that project, participation in seminar discussion, and a paper/presentation on one of the week’s readings.
 

PSC 80607: Global Political Thought, Prof. Mehta, Wednesdays, 2:00 p.m.–4:00p.m., 4 credits

Course Description: This seminar will consider the debates, thought and ideas of thinkers from various parts of the world – mainly in the 20th century, but not exclusively. The thinkers will include Gandhi, Nehru, J.S. Mill, Leopold Senghor Aime Cesaire, Martin Luther King Jr. It will also consider the context which may have informed them – such as colonialism, the late 19th century Victorian consensus, struggle for civil rights and issues of identity, but in the main it will be organized around texts.

SOC 70100: Development of Sociological Theory (Theory I), Prof. Trimbur, Tuesdays, 2:00 P.M.-4:00 P.M., 3 credits.

Course Description TBA
 

SOC 85600: Social Movements in Latin America, Prof. Jack Hammond, Thursdays, 2:00-4:00pm, 3 credits

This course will examine social movements in Latin America since the wave of democratization following the authoritarian period of the 1970s and 1980s. We will highlight the period of democratization, neoliberalism and austerity and the following period a return to developmental populism the 21st century, emphasizing the Pink Tide, horizontalism, resistance movements, digital organizing, globalization and transnational movements. In studying these movements, we will examine the applicability of North- based theories of social movements and the alternatives which have been proposed or may be needed.
 

SOC 86800: Culture and Politics, Prof. James M. Jasper, Wednesdays, 4:15-6:15, 3 credits

This course will examine meaning in the construction of political subjects, actions, and institutions, taking culture (including morality, emotions, and cognition) as an aspect of all social life. We will also examine interpretive methods as especially appropriate to cultural-political analysis. It focuses more on the culture of politics than on the politics of culture.​
 

SOC 84600: Within-National Inequalities: From Pareto to Piketty, Prof. Branko Milanovic, Wednesdays, 6:30-8:30pm, 3 credits

The objective of the course is to review and analyze different theories about the forces that influence inter-personal income distribution within a single policy-making unit (that is, within a nation-state).

The first such theory was developed by Vilfredo Pareto more than 100 years ago. Pareto believes that income distribution does not change regardless of a social system and level of development. Simon Kuznets, in the 1950s, posited, on the contrary, a theory where income inequality evolves as societies get richer. Jan Tinbergen, in the 1970s, argued that the level of inequality is determined by the two opposing forces of education and technological change. More recently, Thomas Piketty argued that low growth combined with high returns to capital predisposes advanced economies to high levels of inequality. In 2016, Milanovic introduced “Kuznets waves” claiming that structural transformations (from agriculture to manufacturing, and more recently from manufacturing to services) are associated with increases in inter-personal inequality.

These theories will be considered on the real-world examples of inequality changes in the United States and other rich OECD countries, China and Brazil. The class shall focus especially on the recent evolution of income and wealth inequality in the United States and Piketty’s analytical contributions.

The class is empirical, and at times mathematical, but does not require any prior specific knowledge of the issues nor techniques. It is recommended for students of economics, political science, and sociology.
 

THEA 85700: Contemporary Performance and Public Space, Professor Bertie Ferdman, Wednesdays, 4:15 p.m. – 6:15 p.m.

This course will explore contemporary performance practices that take place outside traditional theatre buildings and that engage with the experience of space and/or situation as an integral component to the content and structure of the work. Through visual art, theatre, and performance studies, we will address the inherent interdisciplinarity of such site-situated performance practices, and we will pay special attention to those that take place in urban public spaces.

We will look at examples from the United States to lay out the main theoretical challenges in analyzing site-situated performances. We will then turn to examples from urban centers in France, Germany, Chile, Peru, and Mexico, locations that provoke the central questions of the course: What are approaches to site-based performance dramaturgies, and how have these changed over the last four decades? What constitutes “public space”? Who is included/excluded in notions of “the public”? How do such practices navigate the ethics associated with performance actions in public spaces? How do these performances engage with the different kinds of publics they encounter? Performance examples will be primarily from the 1980s to the present, but we will also consider historical precursors from the ’60s and ’70s, including Happenings, Situationists International, and political street theatre.

To approach such live performances, which we will read about and/or view through documentation, we will use theoretical readings on the public sphere, spatial politics, historical reenactment, social practice, gentrification, and urban aesthetics by the following authors: Christopher Balme, Claire Bishop, Rosalyn Deutsche, Susan Haedicke, David Harvey, Jen Harvie, Shannon Jackson, Henri Lefebvre, Michael McKinnie, Rebecca Schneider, Neil Smith, Kim Solga, Cathy Turner, and Nicolas Whybrow, among others. Course requirements will include a class presentation and a research paper.

THEA 86000: Festive and Ritual Performance, Professor Erika Lin, Tuesdays, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

This course will examine theories and practices of festive and ritual performance in a range of times and places and will explore their implications for theatre as both an aesthetic object and an efficacious performative enactment. Topics for discussion may include: religious ritual and popular devotion; dance, gesture, and movement; games and sports; roleplaying, especially in relation to race, gender, sexual identity, and class; icons and objects; magic, astrology, and witchcraft; birth and funeral rites; nonlinear temporalities; ritual space and place; holidays and calendar customs; animals and environment; food and drink; violence and combat; erotics and sexuality. Each class session will bring together disparate theatre and performance practices by centering on a particular theme. For instance, we might consider Mardi Gras and Carnival in relation to racial impersonation; movement and religious space in Christian and Hindu processional drama; audience participation and community formation in contemporary queer theatre; site-specific performance, ecocriticism, and the history of modern pagan witchcraft; poverty and charity in mumming and other holiday begging customs; mock combat, blood sports, and dramas of ritual sacrifice; and animal masks and puppetry in diverse dance traditions. Culturally specific theatre and performance practices will be analyzed in relation to theoretical work by writers such as Joseph Roach, Diana Taylor, Max Harris, Claire Sponsler, Richard Schechner, Victor Turner, Mikhail Bakhtin, Catherine Bell, Kay Turner, Marina Warner, Johan Huizinga, Brian Sutton-Smith, Carlo Ginzburg, Peter Burke, and Ronald Hutton. Evaluation: active class participation, short weekly response papers, possible brief in-class presentation, research proposal with annotated bibliography, and a final paper.

UED 71200 (De)Constructing Black Girlhoods, Prof. Deckman, Tuesdays, 4:15 PM-6:15 PM, 3 Credits
 
This course will examine the shifting constructions of Black girlhood(s) and the emerging field of Black girlhood studies, including theories derived from critical race and Black feminisms, methods, and analytical approaches to the study of Black girlhood. Further, the class will interrogate Black girlhood as a political category of identity and symbol of agency, addressing such topics as foundations of the field, utility of the categories of “girl” and “woman” and representation of Black girlhood in academic literature and popular culture. As such, we will consider the multiplicity of the Black girlhoods as embodied and experience through, for example, gender, sexuality, and geography. This course will aim to think through and embody theories and practices—emancipatory, humanizing, radical acts—as produced by Black girls, artists, and scholars.  Class members will apply their theoretical understandings to final projects in which they either propose a research design informed by Black girlhood studies or conduct preliminary analysis of data drawing on related theories.

UED 72100 A Critical Exploration of Educational Ideologies, Prof. Gonzalez, Thursdays, 4:15 P.M.- 6:15 P.M., 3 Credits 
 
In this course we examine commonly held/socially constructed beliefs about the nature of teaching and learning as well as our respective disciplines/areas (ie. mathematics, social studies, bilingual education, museum education). That is, we consider how educational ideologies get thickened over time and explore how these drive student’s developing academic identities as well as decisions concerning teaching, learning, educational reform, curriculum, and educational policies.  Using critical theory and intersectionality as theoretical lenses we unpack and challenge these beliefs as we widen what it means to teach and learn in our respective fields. We pay particular attention to the impact on students from traditionally marginalized communities as well as on urban areas and social justice education.
 
As an example, the instructor’s own prior research shows that individuals from all walks of life and all levels of educational and career success, openly admit they are bad at math. In contrast, most would be embarrassed to say that they cannot read. This seemingly trivial admission has a profound impact on mathematics education. Our well-meaning discussions about improving mathematics achievement are tempered by the socially accepted belief that failure in math is to be expected. That is, this phrase normalizes failure and, further, places failure squarely on the individual ensuring a narrowing of the conversation that keeps us from considering what larger social forces may be responsible for the reality that many do not excel in the subject.
 
After an introduction to the theoretical frameworks that will be used, the instructor will provide additional readings that will be used to facilitate a discussion around a specific social construct with respect to mathematics education, her research area. In much the same way, students will be expected to propose readings and lead a class discussion for their specific disciplines.

UED 71200 Co-constructing Theory with Data in Educational Research, Prof. Collett, Thursdays, 6:30 P.M. – 8:30 P.M., 3 credits

This course is designed to help students understand the intersection of theoretical frameworks and the process of data analysis.  It is designed to support second and third students to use theoretical frameworks dominant in education [e.g. sociocultural theory (Vygotsky, 1978);  positioning theory (Harré & van Langenhove, 1999); Dialogism (Bahktin, 1981)] to create data analysis tools of layered coding (Saldana, 2013) to elucidate important findings across educational settings.  Students will analyze and deconstruct different theoretical approaches to understand how to create methodological tools to identify novel findings and conclusions.