Available on the Master of Liberal Arts degree. Administered by the Office of
Graduate Studies and Research.
Master of Liberal Arts
The Master of Liberal Arts program is designed to offer graduate level education
in the broad areas of liberal studies. It is a multidisciplinary, non-career
oriented program that seeks to offer a wide range of educational opportunities
to students of diverse educational backgrounds. The intent of the program is
to make available to all college graduates an opportunity to satisfy their intellectual
curiosity and to broaden their knowledge.
Prerequisites. A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or
university is required for admission. Applications for admission are available
in the Office of Graduate Studies and Research.
Program. The M.L.A. degree requires successful completion of 30 hours of
course work, at least 21 of which must be taken on a letter grade basis. Twelve
of the 30 hours must be in M.L.A. courses designated ÒPerspectives on
Society.Ó Courses so designated will relate a liberal arts discipline
to a) issues of contemporary American society, b) issues of culture or cultural
diversity in America, c) other world cultures and societies.
On-Line Program. The MLA Program offers courses that can be taken
completely online. These courses are open to all MLA students. If
students wish, they can complete the entire MLA Program exclusively online.
No distinction is made between regular courses and online courses in terms of
degree requirements or in the actual granting of the degree.
Pass/No Credit. At the election of the student, M.L.A. courses can be taken
on a pass-no credit basis; however, no more than 9 hours taken on a pass/no
credit basis will count toward the M.L.A. degree.
Independent Study. In exceptional circumstances, students may desire to
pursue particular topics in independent study (MALA 6970) under the supervision
of an M.L.A. instructor. If a student should engage in such a study, certain
guidelines must be followed. A copy of these guidelines is available in the
Office of Graduate Studies and Research. No more than six hours of independent
study may count toward the degree
Transfer Credit. Any request for transfer credit must be made on the appropriate
form accompanied by a catalog course description. An official transcript of
the graduate work must be mailed from the registrar's office directly to TCU.
Credit may be requested only for courses broad enough in content to meet the
philosophic intent of the M.L.A. program. All requests are subject to approval
by the M.L.A. Advisory Committee. No more than six hours of transfer credit
will be accepted. Courses, other than M.L.A., completed at TCU cannot be applied
toward degree requirements.
M.L.A. Alumni. Alumni of the program are encouraged to continue their involvement
in the M.L.A. through additional coursework, including travel/study programs,
under arrangement with the Office of Graduate Studies and Research. Interested
alumni should contact the office for details.
Courses. Courses in the M.L.A. program are offered on a rotating basis.
Classes generally meet in the late afternoon and weekday evenings; occasionally,
day and Saturday classes are offered. M.L.A. courses are also offered during
the various summer terms. The Office of Graduate Studies and Research publishes
course descriptions for the following semester. Although new courses are added
each year, the following is a list of courses that have been taught in recent
years. Courses preceded by an asterisk (*) have been designated as ÒPerspectives
on Society core courses. The following is a complete list of courses offered by this department. Go
to Class Search to see which courses are being taught this semester.
Courses of Instruction
61013THEMES IN PREHISTORY: FOSSILS, DINOSAURS, AND HUMANS Dinosaurs
have held the public imagination for almost 200 years now. Beyond an intrinsic
interest in animals that lived in an unimaginably distant time, dinosaurs and
dinosaur paleontology figured greatly in the development of concepts of geologic
time and biology from the Renaissance on and are still centered in the public's
appreciation of "science'. This course will take students through a tangled
web of emergent concepts of time, organisms and public relations' through
the last 300 years or so, focusing on the tangible and intangible impressions
that dinosaurs have made on modern civilizations.
61023 THEATER: HISTORY ALIVE It is said that in times of prosperity, when
a nation is at its peak of power, that the Theatre thrives. It is also understood
that the Theatre is a reflection of life and society. The Theatre opens an active
portal to ancient civilizations and allows one to experience a world now gone.
This comprehensive Web-Based course will explore the theatre and drama of three
historical periods; Ancient Greece, Elizabethan England and 20th
Century America; along with the societal influences that shaped the art form,
and compare them to our contemporary world.
*61033 DILEMMAS IN AMERICAN POLITICS: FREEDOM, ORDER, EQUALITY This class
will examine the perennial dilemmas between Freedom, Order and Equality especially
as they pertain to political ideology and public policy. To understand the dilemmas,
we will examine the basic structure of our government with special attention
paid to the structural tensions that augment this dilemma. Next we will look
at how the dilemmas surface in contemporary debate among liberals and conservatives
and how the dilemmas impact the definition of policies in the United States.
We will be discussing and debating a number of current issues that pit these
three valued ideals against one another to better understand the positions presented
by advocates on both sides of the policy debates and to illuminate our personal
positions and views.
61043 JERKS, NITWITS, AND LOSERS: THE ANTI-HERO IN THE WESTERN TRADITION
This class explores changing ideas that make someone a jerk, nitwit, or loser
from antiquity to the 20th century. How and why have these ideas
changed? What cultural values-about individuality, about equality, about sympathy-do
these ideas reveal? What are the social and political functions of labeling
someone a jerk, nitwit, or loser? Under what conditions are these anti-heroes
admirable, even heroic? Readings will possibly include: Homer's The Iliad
(selections), Plautus's Miles Gloriosus, Chaucer's Canterbury Tales
(selections), Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, Austin's Pride and Prejudice,
Melville's Bartleby the Scriviner, Wodehouse's The Mating Game,
and Toole's A Confederacy of Dunces.
61053 PARAPSYCHOLOGY: WEIGHING THE EVIDENCE The field of parapsychology
includes phenomenon such as telepathy, clairvoyance, psychokinesis, ghosts and
hauntings, spirit communication, and near-death experiences. The claim by many
parapsychologists is that these paranormal occurrences have been studied with
rigorous research methods, and that there is considerable evidence to support
their existence. This course will weigh the evidence for parapsychology by tracing
the history of psychical research from the dawn of spiritualism to the present
day use of the ganzfeld technique. We will discuss the careers of famous psychics
as well as the contributions of many noted parapsychologists. The methods and
results from para psychological studies will be evaluated in the context of
the approaches used by researchers in the natural sciences. The objective of
this course is to present perspectives from both "believers" and "skeptics"
such that in the end each student can make up his/her own mind as to the strength
of the evidence.
61063 LIGHT, COLOR, AND SPACE Human beings receive over 80% of their information
about the spatial environment through vision. The mechanism by which this visual
environment is revealed to us is light. It is the quality of that light, in
all of its manifestations, that has inspired mankind for thousands of years.
Light has both inspired and guided our relationships with the world that surrounds
us. This course seeks to explore and clarify the inter-relationship between
man and light. Students will combine the advantages of distance education and
concentrated explorations in the TCU Center for Lighting Education to create
a unique learning environment. Individual/team investigations will concentrate
on the use of light and color to create sophisticated themed environments. The
TCU Center for Lighting Education will be used to support the actual demonstration
of and investigations into the use of various types of electric lighting devices,
ranging from simple track fixtures to computer controlled fixtures that can
change color, lighting position, and pattern.
*61073 THE SUPREME COURT'S GREATEST HITS "The Supreme Court's Greatest Hits"
is an on line course featuring student/professor analyses of selections from
the most important decisions of the United States Supreme Court in the last
fifty years. The topics to be covered during the term include: 1) Freedom of
expression, 2) Freedom of religion, 3) Reproductive Freedom, 4) Discrimination
based on gender, 5) Discrimination based on sexual orientation, 6) Pornography
and the legal test for obscenity, and 7) Highlights from the criminal justice
*61083 THE WILD WEST Well was it? When? To whom? What tamed it? This
course will wrestle these questions by surveying the history of the trans-Mississippi
West from contact to the present (possibly into the future) and considering
the significance, or insignificance, of frontiers in American History. Students
will read a textbook and analyze the West through extensive use of web sites
and representations in popular culture, especially films.
61093 PROFILES OF COURAGE: CINEMATIC STUDIES OF GREATNESS This MLA eCollege
course capitalizes on great films to investigate the lives of people who achieve
greatness. Films such as Amadeus, Braveheart, Glory, Lawrence of Arabia,
Patton, and Shindler's List are used as a laboratory for studying
the principles of greatness as played out in the lives of creators, heroes,
and leaders. The course consists of three, five-week units, each devoted to
one perspective on greatness: 1) The Hero Cycle, 2) the Creative Quest, 3) Personality,
Persuasion, and Power
61283 A WORLD OF WEATHER: FUNDAMENTALS OF METEOROLOGY Do you have a fascination
with the Weather Channel? Are you interested in a non-mathematical treatment
of the principles of meteorology and climatology? In this course, you will be
introduced to the excitement of weather as it happens, by working with current
weather data delivered via the Internet. The course objectives are to develop
a working understanding of general meteorological and climatological processes,
develop an understanding of the spatial and temporal variability of these processes,
and begin to understand how these factors influence the climate of a region.
The course covers the composition and structure of the atmosphere, the flows
of energy to, from, and through the atmosphere, and the resulting motions produced
from small to planetary scales. The physical principles of atmospheric phenomena
are stressed in the understanding of weather's impact on humans, particularly
with severe weather, as well as climate change.
*61323 THE NEW SOUTH, 1877 - PRESENT In this course, the political, social
and economic factors in the New South are examined with attention given to comparative
regional history. Particular emphasis will be placed on historical interpretations,
showing both the professional and lay image of the South in today's society.
The economic modernization of the South will also be a major theme of the course
*61373 THE SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY OF CRIME AND VICTIMIZATION This course introduces
students to the central ideas in the field of social psychology and the significance
of these ideas in providing explanations for criminal behavior and related phenomena.
Additionally, social psychological theory and research are examined and utilized
to understand offenders, victims and criminogenic environments. The course emphasizes
the integration and application of course content to understand such contemporary
criminological issues as punishing and controlling juvenile offenders, treatment
and control of sex offenders, victim recovery, the media violence connection,
serial and mass murder, and the validity of repressed memory.
61523 THE IMPORTANCE OF PLANTS IN OUR WORLD Aspects of plants that make
them useful to people from an economic and social perspective. The structure,
chemistry, genetics, and ecology of plants are examined. Products derived from
flowers, seeds, fruits, stems, leaves and roots are analyzed in light of past,
present, and future needs of the world community.
*71843 THE ETHICS OF COMMUNICATION An examination of contrasting models
and standards of communication ethics. Students apply these perspectives to
specific situations in politics, advertising, interpersonal communication and
60023 WRITING AUTO/BIOGRAPHY This is a course in Òlife-writingÓ
about the student's own or other persons' lives. Required reading
includes several autobiographies of the student's own choice selected
from a bibliography of autobiographies. Students will report on the autobiographies
they select. The emphasis in the course, however, is on the students' own writing
within a workshop atmosphere.
*60033 OUTBREAK: INFECTIOUS DISEASES AND WORLD HISTORY A broad, integrated
view of infectious disease in humans within the context of society and history.
Development of medical science and technology, effects of disease in society,
and conduct and limitations of historical inquiry will be examined.
*60043 MASS MEDIA AND SOCIETY A critical analysis and overview of the mass
media in its cultural context provides an understanding of mass communication
and society with an emphasis on processes and effects of media technology, on
media as agents of power and on media and the consumer in a global community.
*60053 THE ASIAN ENIGMA: MODERN CHINA AND JAPAN An analysis of the civilization,
culture and values of contemporary China and Japan with a view to explaining
why each nation reacted so differently to Western impact and what each portends
for America and the rest of the western world. The course stresses traditional
Chinese and Japanese values, how they are manifested in everyday life as well
as national and economic decision-making, and how these values are different
from those held by most Americans.
*60063 LITERATURE OF THE AMERICAN SOUTHWEST
The course will investigate the idea of a "sense of place" by working toward
a definition of the "American Southwest." We will examine how authors evoke
a distinctive sense of place by reading and discussing nonfiction books of travel
(e.g., John Grave's Goodbye to a River or Richard Shelton's Going
Back to Bisbee) and a range of fictional works representing several literary
modes, ethnicities, and Southwestern perspectives.
*60073 THE IMPACT OF COMPUTERS ON SOCIETY This is a non-technical introduction
to what a computer is, how it functions, and how they are used in todayÔs
society. In addition to learning about the impact of computers, students will
learn to use a browser to access the Internet.
*60083 THE AFRICAN PRESENCE IN LATIN AMERICA Using contemporary literature
as a point of departure, this inter-disciplinary course will examine the African
influence in Latin America. The course will explore the history and culture
of Latin Americans of African heritage including their role in the work force,
the struggle for independence and freedom, and the preservation of their culture.
It will also include an analysis of Afro-Latin American contributions to music,
dance, visual arts, cuisine, language, and religious expression.
*60103 WORKING CLASS LIFE IN LITERATURE AND FILM An examination of working-class
life and culture traditionally ignored by the academy. By examining fiction,
poetry, and films by and about the working-class, we will seek to understand
the fluidity of working-class life and culture as well as the way social class
intersects such other identities as race, gender, and sexual orientation.
*60113 MYTHS AND LEGENDS: NORTH AMERICAN INDIAN THOUGHT Luther Standing
Bear declares: "The Indian, by the very sense of duty, should become his own
historian, giving his account of the race--fairer and fewer accounts of the
wars and more of statecraft, legends, languages, oratory, and philosophical
conceptions." This course is a survey of the legends and myths and the cultural-agricultural
practices of the north American Indian tribes and nations with a focus on the
nature of the self (person; tribe), the world (nature; cosmos), and their interrelationship(s).
These concepts are discussed and comparisons with Western philosophy are made
*60123 GLOBAL PERSUASIVE CAMPAIGNS, THEIR INFLUENCE AND IMPACT An examination
of the influence and impact of global persuasive campaigns through an analysis
of the structure of the campaign process and the use of images to create familiarity
and experience. Global communications have created an international community
exposed to persuasive campaigns, some advertising and some informational. The
influence and impact of these campaigns varies with the different media in which
they appear and as they are interpreted in the context of different cultures.
*60133 THE SOCIOLOGY OF DEVIANT BEHAVIOR This course examines deviance as
a social phenomenon. The goal is to introduce students to substantive topics
and scholarly work within the sociology of deviance while providing an opportunity
for discussion and critique. Special emphasis will be placed on the interactional
dynamics involved in defining and managing deviance and the development of deviant
*60143 ECONOMICS OF CONTEMPORARY ISSUES Basic concepts and tools used by
economists and applications of those tools to the analysis of contemporary economic
and social issues. Included among the issues to be examined will be drug prohibition,
tax reform, Social Security, the minimum wage, and environmental protection.
*60153 CULTURE AND AMERICAN CINEMA An exploration of cinema as a form of
American social expression. As cultural artifacts, films are produced in specific
historical contexts by and for cultural groups. Films produced for American
audience reflect American values, myths, and behavior and thus constitute an
important form of social expression. After examining the cultural roots of American
cinema, social/cultural events in American cultural history such as the Great
Depression, World War II, Vietnam, the 60s, the inner-city struggle, the Civil
Rights movement, the Reagan conservatism, and the films of the 90s will be investigated.
*60183 "AFTER DICTATORSHIP: CAN LATIN AMERICAN NATIONS ACHIEVE DEMOCRACY?" The
course challenges the facile assumption that because guerrilla wars have ended
and the generals have turned power over to civilians, Latin America will necessarily
"go democratic." The course focuses on the peace processes in selected Latin
American countries in order to explore the serious challenges that confront
nations seeking to democratize when they are saddled with deep legacies of authoritarianism.
*60193 HIGH CIVILIZATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: THE AZTECS, THE INCAS, AND THE MAYA
An examination of the beginning, development, and decline of the three major
aboriginal cultures of the Western Hemisphere. The total culture of each civilization
will be explored including religious, social, economic, and military factors.
Post-conquest developments will also be examined.
*60203 MEXICAN CULTURAL HISTORY A course on Mexico's political history,
with particular attention to the nation's culture and folklore. The course will
include an eight-day trip at spring break to Mexico, with visits to major historical
sites and museums connected with Mexico's colonial and independence periods.
*60213 CONTEMPORARY INDIGENOUS LITERATURE OF MEXICO A study of literary
works by outstanding, contemporary writers hailing from a variety of Mexican
Indigenous ("Indian") ethnic groups: Nahuatl, Zapoteco, Yucatec Mayan, Mazateco,
Trotzil, among others. The pre-Hispanic roots of this new literature will be
examined, as will recurring themes and other ancient motifs which persist in
today's writers. Short stories, poetry, and drama will be studied within their
specific ethnic contexts, and also within a broader literary analytical framework.
Recent English translations by Dr. Frischmann and his personal research experiences
will make this course accessible to all MLA students.
60223 THE WATERGATE LEGACY Where were you when the Watergate break-in occurred?
Students in this course will revisit the historical Watergate episode in American
politics, beginning with an examination of the events as they unfolded and focusing
on key decisions that determined the outcome of Watergate. In the first part
of the course, we will watch a documentary summarizing the event now known simply
as "Watergate." In the second part of the course, we will examine the political
reforms that came out of the Watergate period and their impact on current American
politics, including the Clinton Impeachment hearings. Students will discuss
election reforms, executive privilege, congressional-presidential relations,
and the special prosecutor's role in the impeachment process. Furthermore, the
class will examine the new environment in presidential-media relations fostered
by Watergate, including a critical viewing of the movie All the President's
Men. Finally, we will attempt to assess Richard Nixon as a political leader
in the mid-twentieth century.
*60243 CURRENT ISSUES IN ECONOMICS: THE FINANCIAL MARKETS The basic structure
of the American economy as it relates to the financial markets will be examined.
Time will be spent on financial market history in order to gain perspective
on current market conditions. The problem of inflation will be the point of
departure for this historic segment. Technical analysis of current and past
markets will also be given some consideration.
60253 KING ARTHUR MEETS QUEEN VICTORIA: ARTHURIAN LITERATURE IN THE VICTORIAN
AGE Anexamination of the roots of current American interest in Arthurian
legend in Queen Victoria'' reign. Students will read important literary works,
including Alfred Lord Tennyson's Idylls of the King, William Morris's
"Defense of Guenevere," and Mark Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's
Court, and explore the historical and political conditions surrounding the
19th-century medieval revival. The course concludes with a screening
of Excalibur (1981) and discussion of its indebtedness to the Victorian
*60263 THE US ECONOMY: ANALYSIS AND OUTLOOK The study of economics involves
the learning of abstract theories about the workings of the economic system
and the study of various policy tools that may be used to guide the economy
toward specified targets. The course will focus on the historical development
of the theories developed to explain our major economic issues, on the controversies
surrounding these theories, and on the different policy conclusions that arise
from the different theories. The major economic issues on which the course will
focus include inflation, unemployment, business cycles, economic growth and
development, international trade deficits and surpluses, federal government
budget deficits and surpluses, income distribution, and globalization.
*60273 ECONOMIC POLICY AND ITS IMPACT: A SIMULATION APPROACH Computer simulation
models will be used to learn important economic concepts and to analyze current
economic problems. Students will assume the role of economic policymakers and
as such will initiate policy changes and examine their effects on various aspects
of the economy, such as the national output level, the inflation rate, the unemployment
rate, and the distribution of income. No prior computer experience is necessary.
60283 A WORLD OF WEATHER: FUNDAMENTALS OF METEOROLOGY A non-mathematical
treatment of the principles of meteorology and climatology. The objectives of
the course are: 1. to develop a working understanding of general meteorological
and climatological processes; 2. to develop an understanding of the spatial
and temporal variability of these processes; and 3. to understand how these
factors influence the climate of a region. The earth/energy system is discussed
first, followed by an examination of simple dynamic relationships, synoptic
circulation, global climate and climate change.
*60293 MATISSE, PICASSO AND THE TRIUMPH OF MODERN ART Anexploration
of the contributions of Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso to the establishment
of 20th-century modern art. The course examines works of art by the
two in detail, the contexts in which their work was created, and the impact
their art had on modern culture. This course is offered in conjunction with
a special exhibition at the Kimbell Art Museum, where the class will meet several
60313 A NEW AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY? What foreign policy issues are
on the horizon for U.S. policy makers? What should our foreign policy be as
we enter the next century? How should that foreign policy be made, and by whom?
The domestic political environment facing U.S. foreign policy makers changed
after the Vietnam War, and with the demise of the Cold War, the external political
environment changed as well. This course will look forward to contemporary U.S.
foreign policy on both the domestic and external levels. Domestically, the course
addresses the various governmental and non-governmental actors who combine to
produce foreign policy. Externally, it examines problems that revolve around
specific issues (promotion of democracy, trade, terrorism) or around particular
countries (Russia, China, Mexico, Cuba).
*60323THE NEW SOUTH, 1877 - PRESENT In this course, the political,
social and economic factors in the New South are examined with attention given
to comparative regional history. Particular emphasis will be placed on historical
interpretations, showing both the professional and lay image of the South in
today's society. The economic modernization of the South will also be a major
theme of the course.
*60373 THE SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY OF CRIME AND VICTIMIZATION This course introduces
students to the central ideas in the field of social psychology and the significance
of these ideas in providing explanations for criminal behavior and related phenomena.
Additionally, classic social psychological theory and research are examined
and utilized to understand offenders, victims and criminogenic environments.
The course emphasizes the integration and application of course content to understand
contemporary criminological issues such as the use of the death penalty for
juveniles, treatment and control of sex offenders, criminalizing drug offenders,
and the validity of repressed memory.
60383 STATES OF CONSCIOUSNESS An examination, from psychological and physiological
perspectives, of various states of human consciousness including wakefulness,
deep sleep, hypnosis, meditation and drug-induced states. The relationship between
consciousness and our scientific and personal views of ÒrealityÓ
is also discussed. In particular, the course explores the boundaries of group
consciousness (based on social validation of experience) and individual consciousness
(based on our unique perceptions of reality). It offers a balanced perspective
on consciousness that combines scientific information, Eastern philosophy, and
*60403 GLOBAL GEOPOLITICS In a world subject to war, ethnic conflict, and
economic disruption, to what extent does geography explain the unfolding of
global events? How do access to waterways, the level of economic development,
the blessings of natural defenses, and proximity to other nations determine
the stance a country presents to the outside world? Geographer Dr. Jeffrey Roet
will introduce geopolitical concepts that help explain conflict and change and
show how geography is indeed the stage upon which history is set. He will reveal
centuries-old patterns behind the dynamics of war, economic competition, and
other current global concerns.
*60423 MODERN MEXICO: A NATION IN CRISIS The emergence of Mexico from colonial
status to hemispheric leader and major force among Òthird-worldÓ
countries. Considerable attention is devoted to the Revolution of 1910 and the
ongoing revolutionary process it initiated. The role of the United States in
the emergence of modern Mexico is discussed in detail. The course concludes
with an extensive examination of Mexico's role as a major oil producer
and the current financial and economic crisis with which the country is contending.
*60443 CONTEMPORARY ISSUES IN HUMAN HEALTH From the human genome project
and cloning to hormone replacement therapy and antibiotic resistance, new issues
involving human health as science discovers more about the causes and treatment
of human diseases increasingly confront us. Our ability to manage our health
depends on our understanding and appreciation of the biological concepts underlying
these issues. This course will examine some of these contemporary issues and
the underlying biological concepts through readings from a variety of Web resources.
*60453 THE FORMER ÒSOVIET UNION:Ó AN HISTORICAL ANALYSIS An
examination of the major personalities, institutional developments, foreign
policy, literature, and general historical trends in the former Soviet Union.
Emphasis is given to the evolution of both the Communist Party and the Soviet
government and the personalities instrumental in formulating Soviet ideology
and institutions - Lenin, Stalin, Kruschev, and others - as well as the post-Soviet
period and the prospects for Russia's future.
*60473 LIFE DURING WARTIME: ENGLISH SOCIETY AND CULTURE 1900 - 1945 This
course will examine the social and psychological effects of living through and
in the shadow of war for a prolonged period. The focus will be on British writing
of the first half of this century (novels, poetry, memoirs) as well as more
recent attempts to reflect back on that period from the (relative) tranquility
of the 1980s and 90s. We will also consider why there has been such a
fascination with wars at the end of this century.
60483 CIVIL WAR: PROBLEMS OF THE CONFEDERATE HIGH COMMAND This course will
examine the issues and problems involved within the Confederate government in
selecting and using generals and in developing and implementing national strategy
during the Civil War. Topics include the personal role of Jefferson Davis, the
influence of Robert E. Lee, and the problematic service of Braxton Bragg, P.G.T.
Beauregard, and Joseph E. Johnson, among others. We will explore the controversies
among Confederate leaders between offensive and defensive strategy and between
Virginia the western theater of the war.
*60513 COWBOY PHILOSOPHY: CHARACTER, VICE AND VIRTUE IN THE WESTERN This
course examines the morality practiced in Westerns in terms of recent philosophical
work on character, vices and virtues. By "Western" is meant primarily films,
but the genre is expanded to include novels, cowboy poetry and songs, and rodeos.
60523 ECONOMIC BOTANY Aspects of plants that make them useful to people
from an economic and social perspective. The structure, chemistry, genetics
and ecology of plants are examined. Products derived from flowers, seeds, fruits,
stems, leaves and roots are analyzed in light of past, present and future needs
of the world community.
60533 THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION: A BLESSING OR A CURSE Today's headlines
report the failure of revolutions with their civil wars, ethnic massacres, and
palace coups. What constitutes a successful revolution? What lessons are there
in the American experience? General Washington's startling words in 1783
express his anxiety for the problems of American state-building and give the
title to a course that will examine the origins of those problems in the protest
to British Imperialism, the War for Independence, and the post-war challenges
leading to the creation of the Federal structure under the Constitution.
60653 THE PEOPLE'S CHOICE: AMERICAN PRESIDENTS A history of the issues,
conflicts and personalities in the development of the American presidency. An
examination of twelve selected presidential administrations from George Washington
to the modern presidency will be conducted.
*60693 THE SATIRIC VISION: FROM JONAH TO DOONESBURY Study of the literary
art of satire, including forms of satire, angles of satiric vision and examination
of chief satirists' works and techniques.
60713 THE HISTORY OF WAR In this survey we will seek to understand the influence
of war in human history from ancient times to the present. This course will
trace the causes and effects of war, the evolution of military technology, and
the role played by leadership. To highlight these, we will discuss decisive
military battles throughout history. Hopefully, by examining this process we
will be able to understand ourselves and our world a little better.
*60733 CREATIVITY AND THE HUMAN EXPERIENCE All of the human enterprises,
including science, literature, art, and music, pour forth from the wellspring
of human creativity. Society rewards outstanding instances of creativity with
prizes ranging from the Pulitzer, to the Van Cliburn, to the Nobel. Yet creative
persons of less dramatic achievements can be rewarded just the same with fruitful
and fulfilling lives. But what is creativity? How can we identify it? How can
we foster it? How did it emerge in homo sapiens? How can each of us lead more
creative lives? This course will seek to answer these questions.
*60773 IMAGES OF JESUS IN FAITH AND CULTURE Jesus of Nazareth, by any account,
is one of the most significant figures in human history. Yet the person, role,
and images associated with Jesus have been understood in an enormous variety
of ways, both within the Christian tradition and outside it. This course introduces
the student, in a descriptive manner, to the spectrum of views of Jesus'
person and work found in the Bible, in extra-canonical Christian literature
(such as the Gospel of Thomas and recently rediscovered Gnostic writings), in
the various streams of Christian history, and in secular culture. The primary
focus is on the meaning of the interpretations of Jesus, but some attention
will be given to the methods scholars use in assessing these interpretations
and in reconstructing the ÒhistoricalÓ Jesus, as well as portrayals
of Jesus in painting, novel, and film.
*60803 PAX AMERICANA: UNITED STATES FOREIGN RELATIONS IN THE TWENTIETH CENTURY
Now that the Cold War is over and the twentieth century is coming to a close,
how well did the United States fulfill its destiny of making the past hundred
years the ÒAmerican CenturyÓ that so many Americans predicted
in the 1890s? This course offers some perspectives as answers by tracing the
development of a global American foreign policy from the period following the
Spanish-American War until the end of the Cold War. It also examines the forces
- both foreign and domestic - that influenced those policies as the United States
tried to formulate new diplomacies to meet each of the ever changing challenges
in world affairs of this most dynamic century.
60813 RECENT AMERICAN-JEWISH FICTION This course will examine the distinctive
contributions to recent American fiction made by American-Jewish fictionists.
The course focuses on similarities and differences between concerns and visions
of such authors as Elie Wiesel, Bernard Malamud, Philip Roth, Isaac B. Singer
and Saul Bellow.
*60903 BRITISH HUMOR FROM THE GOONS TO THE YOUNG ONES "British Humor," as
exemplified in popular culture by Monty Python's Flying Circus has gained acceptance
in the U.S., but is actually based on a long tradition that has its roots in
the special love of wit, puns, paradoxes, and epigrams the English have manifested
since the Viking invasions. Even though sensing the laughable and absurd is
a universal trait, humor is expressed according to cultural differences and
values of class, education, or special interest. Students in this course will
look at British Humor on radio, TV, and film and attempt to define its unique
60943 PHILOSOPHY IN THE TWENTIETH CENTURY: ON LIFE AND LIVING William James'
reflections on life and living (1895/1899) prompt the central question, what
are the conditions to lead the life of a person? The question is addressed by
the following literature: Robert Nozick, The Examined Life: Philosophical
Meditations (1989), John Kekes, The Examined Life (1992), and Richard
Wollheim, The Thread of Life (1984).
60953 MODERN ASTRONOMY: FROM THE ORIGIN OF THE UNIVERSE TO BLACK HOLES An
introduction to recent developments in astronomy and astrophysics: how the Universe
began and how will it end, the age of the cosmos, the origin of galaxies, the
birth, life, and death of stars, stellar and galactic black holes, millisecond
pulsars, supernovae, comets and quasars, and the worlds of the solar system.
Questions to be pondered include: Where and what is the missing mass? Are we
alone in the Universe? Are we in danger from a comet colliding with earth? Where
and how did life originate? The latest discoveries by the Hubble Space Telescope,
Cassini, and other space missions are also discussed.
*70013 MEN, WOMEN AND SOCIETY: NEW DEFINITION OF ROLES An examination of
new ideas, data and theories to interpret changing roles of men and women in
*70023 EXPRESSIONS OF RELIGIOUS AND CULTURAL VALUES IN THE ARTS An analysis
of the visual arts, architecture, and music as expressions of religious and
cultural values. Development of these art forms in Western culture as well as
the formation and roles of symbols and iconic forms of communication are investigated.
70073 ENERGY RESOURCES, ALTERNATIVES, AND ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES A study of
the distribution of the world's energy resources and a look at alternative
sources of energy such as wind, tides, geothermal, synfuels, solar, and nuclear
power. Environmental issues including air and water pollution, solid waste,
pesticides, toxic substances, etc., will be addressed as will new techniques
for finding and evaluating earth resources utilizing satellite data and the
70083 THE BRITISH COMIC NOVEL This course examines the comic tradition in
the British novel from the eighteenth century to the present. It uses representative
major works of narrative prose fiction to illustrate various types and techniques
of comedy. Another purpose is to study the nature of the novel and its role
in the history of British literature.
70113 NATIVE PEOPLES OF THE AMERICAN SOUTHWEST An overview of the native
Americans of the region from pre-contact times to the present. Relations and
differences among native groups are emphasized as well as interactions with
non-Indian groups. Efforts to ÒwhitenÓ the native population ranging
from Spanish missionary activities in the 16th century to the federal government's
Òtermination policyÓ in the 1950s are analyzed.
70173 AMERICAN ENGLISH: PAST, PRESENT, FUTURE A study of the English language
in America from colonial times to the present. Within this historical framework,
numerous contemporary questions are addressed: Where do our different dialects
come from? How is our language changing? Is linguistic change good or bad? What
does the future hold? Students are given the opportunity to investigate current
*70183 MASS MEDIA AND PERCEPTIONS OF REALITY The complexity of our society
makes it necessary for us to draw what we know, or think we know, from information
about events, trends, and even people from the mass media. Yet few people are
trained as consumers of information produced by the media. This course examines
the various perceptions of reality that the mass media create, exploring some
of the reasons why these perceptions occur.
*70213 UNDERSTANDING BEHAVIOR: A LOOK AT FOUR CULTURES An introduction to
the concepts and methods of ethnography. This theoretical approach will be made
practical through the study of four culture areas: sub-Saharan Africa, lowland
South America, highland South America, and North America. Consequently, four
different types of society will be studied: hunting and gathering, horticultural,
agricultural and industrial.
*70233 THE RISE OF AMERICAN BUSINESS The evolution of the American business
system is examined with emphasis on four basic themes: the impact of technological
and managerial change, the interaction between business and society, the position
of the businessman and businesswoman in society, and the constantly-changing
relationships between business and government. Special attention is devoted
to the contemporary business scene.
*70253 WAR TO PEACE: POLITICAL CHANGE IN CUBA AND CENTRAL AMERICA IN THE 1990S
An examination of the dramatic (but low profile) political transition taking
place in countries that only recently were torn by revolution and by counterinsurgency
wars. The original causes of those revolutions, including the Cold War ideological
divisions that formed the international environment in which they took place
will be discussed. We will examine the tentative, fragile steps that are presently
being taken to overcome the authoritarian and violent political legacies of
the past and to build a more inclusive, democratic political future.
*70273 PSYCHOANALYTIC PERSPECTIVES ON SOCIETY Over the last thirty years
of his life Sigmund Freud went beyond his clinical concerns and constructed
social theories. During this period, Freud produced a series of works analyzing
human societies and such social phenomena as religion, the family, social groups,
and social change. This course presents Freud's social thought as reflected
in these later writings, assessing both his contributions and limitations as
a social thinker.
*70373 MODERN AMERICAN SOCIETY: GLOBAL POWER SINCE WORLD WAR II This ÒperiodÓ
course in American history reviews major political, economic, social, cultural
and diplomatic events: World War II, the Truman administration and post-war
America, the Eisenhower administration and the consensus of the 1950's,
the Kennedy administration, Lyndon Johnson and the Great Society, the civil
rights movement, the Republican ascendancy, and the rise of southern power.
70443 WILLIAM FAULKNER: STORYTELLER OF THE SOUTH An examination of five
major novels from the Yoknapatawpha cycle: Light in August (1932), Sanctuary
(1931), The Sound and the Fury (1929), Absalom, Absalom! (1936) and Go Down,
Moses (1942). The course focuses on the art of Faulkner's fiction as
well as upon his ideas, themes, characters, and meanings.
*70533 CIVIL WAR AND RIGHTEOUS REFORMERS: CONFLICT IN STUART ENGLAND This
course introduces 17th century English ideas of politics and religion and how
their clash brought the British Monarchy to a state of collapse in 1649. It
analyzes how the English Civil War (1642-49) and the Interregnum (1649-60) altered
the power between the Parliament and the Crown. This produced the balance of
the modern British Constitution and its government. The course concludes with
an examination of the cultural, social, and economic ideals of Englishmen as
they were transferred to the American colonies.
70543 FOSSILS AND MAN: THE IMPACT OF THE FOSSIL RECORD Students will become
acquainted with the impact that fossils and paleontology have had on the history
of the earth. It was the fact that fossils were finally accepted as a record
of ancient life that began to change the way that 17th century naturalists looked
at the world. The fundamental notions of change and evolution of natural systems
has forever affected man's view of the world and fossils, which, in particular,
document Ôworlds before man'. The history of interpretation of
fossils in the argument for evolution, and the use of fossils in modern biology
and geology will be examines.
*70553 THE AMERICAN DRUG EXPERIENCE An examination of the 19th century origins
of widespread drug use in America, the present types of drugs and drug users,
and the psychological and social aspects of contemporary drug use. Various public
health models for dealing with treatment, control and prevention of drug use
in the U.S. are discussed.
*70573 THE PRESS AND THE PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN The role the press plays
in presidential campaigns and election processes; analysis of the impact of
the press on public opinion, debate and consensus; the relationship between
the press and politics; the press and political participation; news values and
the democratic process.
*70653 THE SECOND WORLD WAR: ITS IMPACT ON THE CONTEMPORARY WORLD A focus
on the impact of World War II as the seminal event of the 20th century that
gave rise to or influenced most major contemporary global issues. By examining
the war in a broader perspective, issues such as the East-West balance of power,
the end of traditional imperialism, the upheavals in the third world, and the
proliferation of technology, the effect of the war fifty years later can be
better understood and interpreted.
*70703 AMERICAN MUSIC AND CULTURE: FROM JAZZ TO TIN PAN ALLEY A study of
the historical evolution of jazz styles in the United States from the 1890s
through the contemporary scene, including American popular music (Tin Pan Alley),
protest music, and motion picture/television music. Included is an examination
of the correlation of musical styles and cultural changes in America.
70713 PHYSICAL FITNESS AS A LIFESTYLE The physiological changes that take
place in the body as a result of acute and chronic exercise. Specifically, the
concepts of physical fitness, conditioning programs, wellness, body composition,
nutrition, risk factor reduction and the influence of exercise on disease and
aging are investigated.
70723 THE RISE AND FALL OF POSITIVISTIC PHILOSOPHY The development of logical
positivism of empiricism from the 18th century (with George Berkeley)
to the 20th century (with A.J. Ayer). (Positivism is the doctrine
that all experience can be subsumed under the principles of natural science;
positivism equates philosophy with science.) The major focus of the course is
Ayer's infamous book, Language, Truth and Logic (1936) and the reactions
it generated in Anglo-American and Continental philosophy. Many of these reactions
are discussed in A.J. Ayer: Memorial Essays (1991) and C.E.M. Joad's
A Critique of Logical Positivism (1950).
*70733 SCIENCE, SCIENTISTS AND SOCIETY This course explores the workings
of science and scientists by studying recurring themes and selected episodes
of scientific change and the social and intellectual milieu in which they occurred.
The focus is on the interaction between science and society from the Renaissance
through the Enlightenment and the Victorian Era and into the Modern Age. How
science differs from or is similar to other areas of human endeavor such as
art, religion, philosophy, or politics are examined. Related topics range from
man's (and God's) place in the universe to sociobiology, sexism, and
*70763 GEOPOLITICS AND WORLD COMMUNICATIONS The study of global communications
in the context of world politics. Overview of world mass media characteristics,
impact of British colonialism, role of the United Nations, the New World Information
Order, ownership of communication technology, issues in monopoly of knowledge,
analysis of information flow and world economy and role of image-makers.
70813 THE COLD WAR AT HOME AND ABROAD From the end of the Second World War
in 1945 until the collapse of the Soviet Union forty-five years later, the Cold
War dominated the domestic and foreign affairs of the United States. This course
examines the origins of the Cold War and some of the consequences, including
the development and application of the containment policy, McCarthyism, the
wars in Korea and Vietnam, various other interventions, the debates over diplomatic
issues, and the various strategies employed by different presidential administrations.
Students will have a chance to do some reading on these subjects and to discuss
them. Also they will view episodes from CNN's production, "The Cold War". The
requirements consist of short weekly papers based on the readings and also a
kind of term project, a five-seven page critique of John Lewis Gaddis' book,
We Now Know. The other readings are T.G. Paterson and J.G. Clifford,
America Ascendant: U.S. Foreign Relations since 1939 and R.J. McMahon
and T.G. Paterson, The Origins of the Cold War, 4th ed.
*70843 THE ETHICS OF COMMUNICATION An examination of contrasting models
and standards of communication ethics. Students apply these perspectives to
specific situations in politics, advertising, interpersonal communication and
*70853 PLACE, DISPLACEMENT, NOSTALGIA AND MEMORY IN RECENT AMERICAN CULTURE
A study of place and place consciousness, and an examination of how, when,
why, or whether marked personal and public dislocations are accompanied by nostalgia,
failures or rearrangements of private and public memory, and conflicts among
competing rhetorics, with attendant apprehensiveness regarding loss of personal
and public value and identity.
*70863 BIOETHICAL ISSUES OF MODERN SOCIETY Three main aspects of the work
of a hospital ethics committee are: self-education through reading the literature
in the discipline, drafting hospital policies on matters raising ethical issues,
and doing case analyses. Members of the class will be formed into a committee
to do all three things. Issues will include withdrawal of life-support, use
of reproductive technologies including cloning, physician-assisted dying, and
more ordinary topics such as informed consent and confidentiality.
*70903 THE GLOBAL VILLAGE: ISSUES IN WORLD POLITICS IN THE POST-COLD WAR ERA
The last two decades of the 20th century have ushered in tumultuous changes
in the political landscape, changes that would have an indelible impact on the
emerging society of the 21st century. This course is designed to provide a forum
for analysis and discussion of some of the most significant issues of global
politics in the post-cold war and post-modern era. While the attempt is to dissect
these issues primarily on their own terms, we also discuss the challenges they
pose to U.S. foreign policy as we enter the 21st century.
*70913 CULTURAL HISTORY OF LATIN AMERICA An examination of the history of
Latin American politics, economics, and society from independence to the present
by focusing on efforts to create national cultures in the region. These efforts
are aimed at constructing unique national communities as the result of independence,
modernizing economic programs, and social evolution.
*70923 ISLAM AND POLITICS IN THE MIDDLE EAST Since there is no separation
between state and church in Islam, no study of Middle Eastern politics is complete
without analyzing the pervasive role of Islam in cultural and political life.
This course however, does not concentrate on Islamic theology, rather the focus
is on politics of Islam and how it molds political discourse and agenda. After
the study of origins and historical development of Islamic political theory,
the focus shifts to explaining the use of post-World War II Islamic revival.
In this connection, the problematics of democratization in the Muslim World
and the prospects for Islamic governments are discussed.
*70933 FOOD AND PHILOSOPHY Philosophical examinations of moral, aesthetic,
ontological, and epistemological issues concerning food are topics studied and
discussed in this course. Such issues as vegetarianism; ethical issues regarding
food additives, food politics and feminism; food as art; food as a metaphor
of life; cultures (e.g., Mayan and Japanese) characterized by their cuisine;
and recipes as a model of justified rational procedures are covered during the
semester. One of the key concepts developed to handle these issues effectively
is foodmaking as a thoughtful practice, where ÒpracticeÓ is understood
by the American pragmatists, Peirce and Dewey.
70943 ANCIENT MYSTERIES: REAL AND IMAGINED In addition to providing an overview
of Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern History from the Paleolithic age to
the fall of Rome, this course explores in some detail various controversial
topics that have generated popular interest and often engendered misinformation.
These topics are analyzed in a scholarly manner in order to solve the ÒmysteryÓ
or expose common mis-perceptions and pseudo-scholarship. Typical topics include
the following: the fall of Rome, the historical Jesus, other Biblical topics,
the pyramids, the Neanderthal problem, and the search for the Trojan War.
*70953 MAYAN RITUAL AND DRAMA: PRE-HISPANIC TIMES TO THE PRESENT This course
will examine the frequently intertwined traditions of ritual and drama among
Mayan peoples of Southern Mexico and Central America, from pre-Hispanic times
to the present. The course will combine a historical perspective beginning with
pre-Columbian documents and Spanish colonial chronicles. Twentieth-century manifestations
will be particularly highlighted, based on the instructor's first-hand
research; special emphasis will be given to the work of performance groups based
in Yucatan and Chiapas, Mexico. Extensive video material will complement textual
*70963 OF VIRGINS AND GODDESSES, FROM MESOAMERICA TO MODERN MEXICO The latest
research and historical impact of ancient Mesoamerican female deities and their
modern-day counterpart ÑOur Lady of GuadalupeÑ on contemporary
culture and society in modern Mexico are examined. The course attempts to show
archaeological and anthropological similarities with mythic-symbolic images
of pre-history from around the world that show the importance of woman's
role in all ancient cultures, including Mexico's.
*70973 LAW AND SOCIETY The examination of the relationship between legal
institutions and social processes. Course readings and discussion will focus
on the social and political nature of law; the creation and organization of
law in modern societies; social functions of law; the limits of law as an instrument
of social change; the legislation of morality; democracy, individualism and
law; criminal behavior and individual rights; and the use of scientific information
*70983 INDIGENOUS PEOPLE OF THE ANDES A study of the indigenous inhabitants
of the Andes, especially Peru and Bolivia, through archaeological and ethnographic
data. Focus is on the development of agriculture and early population centers,
particularly the Incas. The course ends with a study of contemporary Quechua
and Aymara peoples, and discussion of current political and economic issues.
*70993 CRITICAL ISSUES IN CRIMINAL JUSTICE The major controversies that
exist in law and criminal justice today are discussed with emphasis on the development
of critical thought concerning these issues. Both empirical evidence and grounded
theory is discussed in such a manner as to help the student formulate thoughtful
opinion concerning the selected topics. Topics include but are not limited to:
The Death Penalty, Gun Control, The Insanity Defense, Drug Legalization, Prison
Privatization, Drunk Driving Laws, Myths of Organized Crime, Crime and the Media,
Fetal Endangerment Statues, and The Jury System.