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Human studies combine the humanities with the social sciences to give students a broad and diversified perspective on human nature and culture. By combining knowledge and experience, human ecologists learn not only to know themselves but also to address the problems and questions of the future.
Human studies courses focus on aspects of the human condition. Faculty challenge students to blend contemporary social and ecological concerns with classical humanistic studies. Courses in anthropology, literature, economics, philosophy, psychology, history, education, law, and political science relate the past to the present, deepen the awareness of one's place in time and provide both the knowledge and perspective to approach individual and cultural challenges.
AD2016Contemporary Artist as Researcher and ActivistThe student will be introduced to the post-modern stream of visual culture that places nature and our relationship to it within the context of pressing global issues. These artworks engage with nature by their placement in site-specific locations, through new modes of picturing, and/or through the appropriation of natural materials. Many of the artists we will examine make use of new tools designed for industrial purpose, medical, technological or scientific research. Other artists utilize organic materials to craft their designs. These artists appropriate the role of "researcher" in order to bring attention to ecologies that human beings have disrupted or will disrupt. How these artists bring us to a deeper understanding of our relationship with nature through new media is our concern. Evaluation is based on class participation, evidence of completion of weekly readings, and a final paper and a class presentation. The class will take at least one field trip.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Lab fee: $50. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: AD HY
AD3021Cities: Past, Present and FutureThis intermediate course focuses on the architecture and physical form of cities through time. Rome has had a profound influence on the design of architecture and cities. In preparation for a 9-12 day field trip to this remarkable city, students will become familiar with its layers of history, the classic orders, the writings of Vitruvius, and the works of Michelangelo, among others. They will experience firsthand the city's famous monuments, ruins, buildings, piazzas, gardens, and neighborhoods, documenting their field observations in sketches, photographs and notes. Upon returning the focus will shift to an examination of the history of several major American and European cities, conditions, policies and technologies that shaped them, and various historic and current urban design movements. We will conclude with examples of recent and emerging international strategies to improve urban public space, transportation, provide local food, reduce emissions, and address impacts of climate change. Students will be evaluated on quality of their field notes and sketches, assignments, class discussions and presentations.
This course will be integrated with and requires co-enrollment in Advanced Food Policy. The third enrollment credit must be either Power and Governance or an Independent Study.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. Class Size Limit: 12. Lab fee: $800.00. Meets the following degree requirements: AD
ED1010Experimental EducationEven before John Dewey published Experience and Education in 1938, experiential education had been practiced in various forms around the world. This course explores the philosophy of experiential education and its diverse practices in the realms of adventure education, service learning, workplace learning, environmental education, museum education, and school reform. Group activities and fieldtrips will provide opportunities to participate as both learner and teacher in a variety of teacher-led and student-designed experiences. The final project involves researching an existing experiential education program, its philosophy, and its practices. Evaluation is based on class and fieldtrip participation (including one multi-day fieldtrip), reflective logs, curriculum design, service-learning journal, an oral presentation of the service-learning, and a final essay that articulates a philosophy of experience in education.
Level: Introductory. Offered every other year. Lab fee: $100. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS ED
ED1011Children's LiteratureThis course is a broad overview of children's literature and its place in the elementary school classroom. It examines the range and trends in literature for children that includes all genres, prominent authors, illustrators, and awards, critical evaluation, and integration into instruction across the curriculum. Students participate in and design lessons which incorporate or extend children's response to literature. They survey poetry and media appropriate for elementary students. Students read an extensive amount of children's literature, keep a response journal, develop an author study, and create a teaching unit using children's literature.
Level: Introductory. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: ED
ED1012Child Education and DevelopmentHow does a child think? What causes him/her to learn? What teaching approaches work best with young children? These questions and more will be explored through readings, lectures, field observations, and planned class activities. This course will provide an introduction to early childhood education (preschool to middle school). Theorists such as Piaget, Vygosky, Montessori, Gardener, Freud, Erikson, Gilligan and Kohlberg will be used to examine the physical, mental, emotional, moral, and social aspects of childhood growth and development. The intent is to examine how questioning, peer influences, parenting approaches, the media and society play into childhood learning. The primary modes of instruction for this class will be lectures, classroom discussions, field observations/reflections, and cooperative learning activities. Sort reflective papers, an observational journal, and a class project will be used to assess learning.
Level: Introductory. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $30. Meets the following degree requirements: HS ED
ED1013Changing Schools, Changing SocietyHow have schools changed and how should schools change to ensure "the good life"? This interdisciplinary, team-taught course examines the potential and limits of a human ecological education as an instrument of enlightened progress and lasting positive social, cultural, and environmental change. It explores three essential questions about education and its relationship to human development and social progress. Looking at the role of formal educational institutions and their relationship to government and other social institutions: What is the role of schools in development and social change? Considering the role of teachers as agents of change: What is the role of the teacher in school/organizational change and community development? And finally, reflecting on our subjective motives for working in the field of education: Why do you want to become an educator? Through course activities such as service-learning in schools and group project work on a contemporary educational phenomenon (e.g., school choice, new technologies for learning, single-sex education), students will learn how educational policy at the federal, state, and local levels impacts teaching and learning, investigate the moral dimensions of the teacher-student relationship, and reflect on the construct of teacher-learners. Students will be introduced to a variety of educational research methods (i.e, ethnography, case study, quasi-experimental, correlational) that will allow for critical analysis of the knowledge base that strives to impact educational policy and practice. Evaluation will be based on participation, reflective writing, service learning, and group projects and presentations.
Level: Introductory. Class limit: 15. Offered every other year. Lab fee: $20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS, ED
ED1014Child DevelopmentHow does a child think? What causes him/her to learn? What teaching approaches work best with young children? These questions and more will be explored through readings, lectures, field observations, and planned class activities. This course will provide an introduction to early childhood education (preschool to eighth grade). Theorists such as Piaget, Vygotsky, Montessori, Gardner, Erikson, Maslow, Kohlberg, and Gilligan will be used to examine the physical, mental, emotional, moral, and social aspects of childhood growth and development. Students will explore a range of curriculum models, approaches, and strategies as they learn to apply developmental theory to best practices. These best practices will include the role of teachers in creating meaningful learning experiences and classroom environments (curriculum), documenting learning, assessment, inclusion, and family involvement. The primary modes of instruction for this class will be lectures, classroom discussions, field observations/reflections, and cooperative hands-on learning activities. Short reflective papers, an observational journal, and class projects will be used to assess learning.
Level: Introductory. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: ED
ED1015Educational InnovationGiven the rapid pace of change in communications, career opportunities, learning options, and the global economy, U.S. schools are struggling to adapt. As technology, culture, politics, and media facilitate new and more diverse means of learning, how are educators adjusting to "new" learners from toddlers through senior adults? Driving questions include: Who is leading innovation and where? What are some of the ways educators are experimenting with teaching? How are innovators changing the purposes of schools? Who is currently starting schools and why? How is brain research impacting innovation within and outside of public schools? How are digital natives, eco-warriors, and the call for global literacy accommodated in mainstream schools? If public schools, as some charge, have outlived their usefulness: what next for education?
With the objective of exploring and understanding innovative ideas for classrooms, school design, and district structures, as well as alternative places and means of learning, we will work toward a more comprehensive understanding of what is new, and potentially revolutionary, in schools and in education beyond schooling. Evaluation will be based on class participation (including leading a discussion around a particular area of individual interest), a series of four reaction papers, and both live and virtual "field" explorations of innovative practices and organizations. The final project will be based on the design and proposal of an innovative educational option.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none. Class Limit: 15. Lab Fee: $10
ED3010Understanding & Managing Group DynamicsThis course will examine essential questions about how groups function, whether the group is a committee involved in institutional governance, a class of adolescents, or a cohort of business colleagues. Readings, activities, and assignments will weigh traditional and alternative conceptions of leadership, power, authority, community, diversity, membership, and exclusion. Students will engage in case discussions, writing (including autobiography and creative writing), and research activities. A major component of the course will be the observation and analysis of a group (e.g., in a community organization, business, or school). The final paper will be the creation and analysis of a case. Evaluation will be based on class participation, responses to readings, facilitation of a case discussion, an autobiographical essay, a short story, reports of observations, and the final paper. P/F grading only. Students will be expected to take the course Pass/Fail, with special arrangement to made for those needing to take it for a grade.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $50. Meets the following degree requirements: HS ED
ED3011Femininity and Masculinity go to School: Gender, Power & EdThis course pivots around two central questions: How does gender influence students learning and experiences of school, curriculum and instruction, teacher-student relationships, school culture and administration? And how do schools perpetuate, resist, and construct gendered identities and gender roles? In this course we will investigate research on gender differences and school achievement, the feminization of the teaching profession, and the effects of gender on school culture, considering evidence from and questions posed by biologists, psychologists, sociologists, anthropologists, historians, and educators. The major objective of the course is to examine how notions of femininity, masculinity, and androgyny have influenced and are influenced by schooling historically and globally. Activities include a historical case study, media critique, fieldwork in an educational setting, a literature review, and curriculum development. Students will conduct research on self-chosen topics such as gender identity development, gender differences in learning styles, sexual harassment in schools, or school sports programs, among others. Evaluation will be based on class participation, historical case, media analysis, oral presentation of fieldwork, written synthesis of literature, and two lesson plans.
Level: Intermediate. Writing Focus option. Offered every other year. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS ED
ED3013Intercultural EducationEducators in and outside of the U.S. teach in increasingly culturally heterogeneous classrooms, schools, and communities. This course explores some challenges and possibilities in education as a result of historical inequities in the distribution of power, knowledge, and resources, and the increasing mobility of peoples in a global economy. We will consider questions such as: What is multicultural, intercultural, and global education? How do culturally different teaching and learning styles impact notions of academic achievement, school success, and teacher quality? How can student assessments and performance standards respond effectively to cultural differences? How can educators effectively communicate and partner with parents and community members across cultural differences? What are the legal and moral obligations of teachers in providing equal educational opportunity according to federal and state laws? We will read theory and research on educating across and about cultural difference, reflect on our own cultural affiliations, and actively explore the dynamics of identity, culture, and power in the teaching-learning relationship and in educational institutions through case discussions and other group activities. Investigations of the education of self and other will take place through class activities, readings, autobiographical and fiction writing, reflective logs, media analysis, and a field research or curriculum project.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisite: An introductory sociology, anthropology, cultural psychology, or education course. Offered every other year. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $20. Meets the following degree requirements: ED HS
ED3014Negotiating Educational PolicyPublic schools are everyone's concern. Shared ownership by diverse stakeholders often brings strong interest in school policies. This course will explore issues under debate by state and local policy-makers through readings, full class and small group discussions, guest speakers, and an extended simulation. We will also examine Maine's Civil Rights Act and its implementation in various school districts. Our driving questions include: what are the ways parents, teachers, business people and interested community members might influence school policies given the common constraints of limited time and energy? How do policy-makers sort through various opinions and facts to create legislation? How do those who implement policy integrate context and experience with the spirit of an official state statute? With the objective of understanding and negotiating critical school policy issues that impact the nation and beyond, evaluation will be based on class participation (including one of two field trips), reflection journal entries, a group interview and presentation, and a final personal analysis paper based on one of the bills under deliberation by Maine legislators this session.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: Changing Schools, Changing Society and/or a prior policy course or strong interest in policy recommended. Class Limit: 15. Lab Fee: $10
ED4010Adolescent PsychologyThis course focuses on the segment of the human life span from puberty to early adulthood. In this class we will examine the physical, cognitive, social, and moral aspects of adolescent growth and development. Issues to be considered include adolescent relationships (peers, family, romantic), adolescent issues (identity formation, at risk behavior, schooling, and stereotypes), and critical reflection on one's own adolescent experience. The main objectives of this course are to: 1) provide students with a working knowledge of the theories of psychology which pertain to early adolescent development; 2) help students develop the ability to critically analyze information and common assumptions about the development of adolescents; 3) consider contemporary issues and concerns of the field; and 4) to afford students the opportunity to explore their own adolescent development. Course work entails lecture, discussion, extensive case analysis, and a field component.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisite: Educational Psychology, Personality, or other introductory level psychology. Class limit: 16. Meets the following degree requirements: HS ED
ED4011Tutorial: Research and Program Development for Ecological EdHow do we determine what is the most effective program model for developing essential skills, concepts, or dispositions for a particular organization, community, or place? This tutorial is designed to develop students’ research, facilitation, and program development skills for those interested in ecological education. The tutorial will guide students through a focused literature review, identify two or three model sites to visit, assess potential program goals in light of existing organizational or community resources, needs, and limitations, and plan, implement, and evaluate an educational program that is site-specific. Students will be evaluated on an annotated bibliography, site studies, curriculum development, reflection on teaching practice, and program evaluation.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: Introduction to Sustainability, COA's Foodprint, Fixing Food Systems, Experiential Education, Adolescent Development, or Curriculum Design and Assessment. Class limit: 6. Lab fee: $100.
ED5010Curriculum Design and AssessmentHuman ecologists who educate, embrace not only the interdisciplinarity of knowledge, but also the complexity of individual student development in political school environments. This course focuses on two essential nuts and bolts of teaching: curriculum design and assessment. How can a teacher learn what students know, how they think, and what they have learned? How can a teacher use this knowledge of students and subject matter to plan learning experiences that will engage diverse interests, adapt to a wide range of learning styles and preferences, accommodate exceptional needs, and meet state-mandated curriculum standards? This course is a required course for prospective secondary school teachers that provides an introduction to the backward design process and diverse assessment strategies. Students will engage in examining theory and practice designing and implementing curricula and assessments. A service-learning component will provide students with the opportunity to observe and participate in a variety of assessment methods in the subject they aim to teach. The final project will be a collaboratively designed, integrated curriculum unit, including lesson plans and assessments. Evaluation will be based on participation, reflective writing, individually designed lesson plans and assessments, and the final project.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisite: Supporting Students with Disabilities in the Regular Classroom. Class Limit: 12. Meets the following degree requirements: HS ED
ED5011Integrated Methods II: Science, Math, and Social StudiesHow can an integrated curriculum for elementary school students help to deepen the relationships children and young adolescents construct with the natural and social worlds in a way that promotes their capacity to know themselves and the communities in which they act? For those preparing to be elementary school educators (grades K-8), this three-credit residency provides an intensive guided apprenticeship that prepares the student-teacher with the necessary knowledge, skills, and experience to design an integrated math, science, and social studies curriculum, create and maintain a constructive learning environment, teach diverse learners using appropriate learning technologies and a variety of strategies, and assess student learning. Learning objectives include all ten of the Maine Initial Teacher Certification Standards as well as familiarity with the Maine Learning Results for Math, Science, and Social Studies. Students will participate in a ten-week service-learning practicum observing and participating in elementary classrooms as well as planning and teaching in vacation school during the local school union's spring break. Readings and discussions in a daily seminar will complement the service-learning component. Evaluation will be based on reflection on service-learning, participation in seminar discussions of readings and service-learning, curriculum and assessment design and implementation, and professional performance in vacation school and at the practicum site. Partial credit may be awarded based on completed work and demonstrated learning.
Level: Advanced, 3-credit Residency. Prerequisites: Learning Theory, Exceptionalities, and Integrated Elementary Methods: Reading and Writing and permission of instructor. Class limit: 12. Meets the following degree requirements: ED HS
ED5012Secondary Methods: Life Science, Social Studies and EnglishThis course is designed to prepare secondary teacher candidates to meet the learning needs of diverse populations of students. Students spend one day a week in a local high school working with faculty in the subject area in which they are being certified. These school-based experiences are integrated into class discussions where students analyze the elements needed for successful teaching, learning, and assessing in their own content area and across disciplines. The purposes, problems, issues, strategies, and materials involved in teaching high school students will be examined critically through class discussions, individual and group work, reflections on field experiences and peer teaching. Students will incorporate the content, inquiry tools and structures of the discipline they will teach into a 4-week unit that may be used in their student teaching. Evaluation will be based on weekly reflective response journals, completion of the service learning component (one day a week in classroom), completion of readings and entry slips, and the 4-week unit of study.
Level: Advanced. Class limit: 12. Meets the following degree requirements: ED
ED5013Student TeachingThe student teaching internship represents the student teaching requirement for COA's teacher certification candidates. Success in this experience is a pivotal criterion in the student's certification candidacy. The student is placed in a school, usually in the immediate region, with a cooperating teacher who teaches subjects and grade levels that match the certification goals of the student. The roles of student teacher, cooperating teacher, school principal, and COA supervisor are discussed and agreed upon in advance. Incrementally, the student teacher becomes familiar with class routines and gradually takes responsibility for teaching. Within the 15-week experience, the student teacher must take on a full load (all classes and all duties) for the number of weeks agreed upon by all parties. This period of time varies with subjects, grade level and specific student goals. The COA supervisor visits the schools in a liaison capacity, and also evaluates the student teacher's performance a minimum of eight times in the term. Student teachers meet together regularly to discuss such issues as curriculum planning, instruction, best teaching practices, classroom learning environment and broader educational issues. Students may use student teaching to fulfill the COA internship requirement if it is completed prior to graduation.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Permission of Ed Studies Program Director. Meets the following degree requirements: ED
ED5014Integrated Methods I: Gr. K-4 Reading and Writing
ED5015Integrated Methods I: Gr. 5-8 Reading and Writing
ES3022Differential EquationsDifferential equations are an application of calculus used to model a wide variety of physical and natural phenomena. The rate at which a cup of coffee cools, populations of predators and prey in ecosystems, the spread of disease, and the behavior of electric circuits, are all examples of systems that have been described with differential equations. This course is an introduction to ordinary differential equations, intended for students who have completed a single-variable calculus course. The course covers a variety of techniques for solving and understanding differential equations, including numerical and qualitative solution methods. Students will learn to solve and analyze differential equations using the python programming language. Students will also gain experience formulating mathematical models using differential equations. To do so, we will discuss general modeling principles and also consider several case studies. In addition to learning the mathematics of differential equations, a central goal of this course is to gain skills necessary for research in the mathematical, natural, and social sciences. This includes conceptualizing and framing a research question, conducing a literature review, giving a research presentation, and writing up results in a style appropriate for publication.
Evaluation will be based on class participation, bi-weekly problem sets, and a term-long project culminating in a presentation and short research paper. Some computer work will be required, but no computer experience is necessary.
LEVEL: Intermediate. PREREQUISITES: Calculus II or the equivalent or permission of instructor. LAB FEE: none. MEETS THE FOLLOWING DEGREE REQUIREMENTS: ES, QR
ES3036The History of Natural History
ES515Our Daily Bread: Following Grains Through The Food System
The aim of the course is to use wheat, oats and rye as a lens to explore how a wide range of factors including history, changing land use patterns, crop development, human nutrition, food processing, sensory evaluation, and socio-economic factors shape how grains are grown, harvested and ultimately transformed into our daily bread. This field-based course seeks to provide students with deep insights into the past and current production of grains in the United Kingdom, Germany and the United States. Extensive readings will complement the summer fieldwork at farms, mills, bakeries and research sites in Europe, and will provide students with the agronomic background necessary for a historical view of grain production and the possibility of localized grain within the current global economy. Students will lead discussions, interview farmers, write short synthetic essays, and undertake a research project designed together with the class. By the end of the course students should be able to: Evaluate the importance of wheat and other temperate grains to the feeding of human populations in past, present and future contexts; Review current and traditional methods of evaluation of food quality and grain processing (bread production in particular) and relate these to modern nutritional problems; Describe the growth cycle of wheat in general terms and relate the production cycle to current issues of sustainability including greenhouse gas emissions, carbon sequestration, energy requirements, and soil conservation; and Compare and contrast the socio-economic importance of wheat to Maine, Germany and the UK. Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: Formal application, Signature of the instructor, Introductory German highly desirable, any of the following courses: Theory and Practice of Organic Gardening, Chemistry of Cooking, The Contemporary Culture of Maine Organic Farmers, Agroecology. *ES*
HE1010Human Ecology Core CourseHuman Ecology is the interdisciplinary study of the relationships between humans and their natural and cultural environments. The purpose of this course is to build a community of learners that explores the question of human ecology from the perspectives of the arts, humanities and sciences, both in and outside the classroom. By the end of the course students should be familiar with how differently these three broad areas ask questions, pose solutions, and become inextricably intertwined when theoretical ideas are put into practice. In the end, we want students to be better prepared to create your own human ecology degree through a more in depth exploration of the courses offered at College of the Atlantic. We will approach this central goal through a series of directed readings and activities.
Level: Introductory. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HE
HS024Contemporary Culture and the Self
This course introduces concepts in anthropology, explores the relationship of the collective aspects of culture to the individual, and examines behavior as a consequence of biology or culture. Half the classes focus on a text (An Introduction to Cultural Anthropology, 5th ed. by Marvin Harris) which compares aspects of human culture at different times and in different parts of the world. The other classes focus on three novels: The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende, The Shipping News by E. Annie Proulx, and The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston. These novels are read as sources of cultural information about individuals from different societies. Two autobiographical papers examine students' own enculturation. Evaluation is based on participation in class, the two papers, a mid-term and a final exam. Offered every fall. Level: Introductory. Class limit: 20. *HS*
HS033Cultural Ecology of Population Control Practices
This is a research course focusing on methods of (and attitudes toward) controlling population growth rates in different cultures. Participants are expected to examine a set of hypotheses which relate several variables in the biological and cultural ecosystem, including population growth rates, environmental depletion, technological change and intraspecies violence. Each student then researches the literature on a different society and presents the findings to the group. Evaluation is based on class participation and a paper summarizing the project. Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: Contemporary Culture and the Self or signature of instructor. Offered every other year. *HS*
HS1011Environmental HistoryHow has human history shaped and been shaped by "the environment"? Environmental history is one of the most exciting new fields in history. In this course we examine world history from Mesopotamia to the present to see the role such things as resource scarcity, mythology, philosophy, imperialism, land policy, theology, plagues, scientific revolutions, the discovery of the new world, the industrial revolution, etc. on the natural, social, and built environments.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: None. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS1012Introduction to the Legal ProcessThe "law" affects every aspect of human activity. As human ecologists we must garner some basic understanding of how law is used (or misused) to shape society and human behavior. This course examines two aspects of the American legal system: 1) the judicial process or how we resolve disputes; and 2) the legislative process or how we enact policy. Course readings cover everything from classic jurisprudence essays to the daily newspaper. We use current environmental and social issues to illustrate specific applications of the legal process. Legal brief preparation, mock courtroom presentations, lobbying visits to the Maine legislature, and guest lectures are used to give a practical dimension to course subjects. Students analyze Federal Election Commission documents to understand the impact of campaign financing on public policy and look closely at other current issues facing the legislative and judicial systems. Evaluation is based upon two papers and several other exercises.
Level: Introductory. Offered every other year. Class limit: 30. Lab fee $20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1013From Native Empires to Nation StatesThis course is a history of Latin America from Native American contact cultures through the contemporary period covering socio-political processes. An emphasis is placed on the fusion of pre-contact societies into a new socio-cultural formation in the colonial period, and then the shared yet divergent history of the region after the collapse of colonial rule. In the second half the class emphasizes the rise of the nation state in Latin America with particular emphasis on dictatorship and rebellions. The course uses traditional texts, novels, and film to explore this huge geographical and chronological expanse.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HY HS
HS1015Introduction to Global PoliticsThis is an introductory level course that will expose students to basic concepts and controversies in international politics and serve as background for more advanced work in the area of international studies. Through historical readings and current events discussions we will answer questions fundamental to understanding global politics today, such as: What are the different roles that nation-states and non-governmental organizations play in international politics? How important are various international institutions (the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund ) in shaping the global political landscape? What exactly is civil society? Inequity defines many political relationships between actors in the global system: between developed and developing countries; between the rich and poor within those countries; between autonomous political groups and the nation-states in which they reside. To more deeply understand these relationships, we will examine some of the processes that have led to inequities in the current world political economy, touching on such topics as: colonialism and national liberation movements of the 20th century, the debt crisis, and the formalization of the international trading system. We will consider the topics from a variety of disciplinary and interdisciplinary perspectives, including political ecology, international political economy, and economic geography. Evaluation will be based on participation in class discussions, several short and long papers written over the course of the term, and a final project and its presentation to the class.
Level: Introductory. Lab fee: $20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1016Practical ActivismIn this course, students will gain practical experience and skills to prepare them to work in advocacy positions for environmental and/or social justice organizations. Through project-based work, we will pay attention to developing such skills as: interacting with the media; interpreting technical information and report writing; lobbying and other political work; grant-writing and other types of fundraising; and non-profit administration and management, including strategic planning, program development, board management, and non-profit legal issues. Student interest will determine the exact topics covered over the term. To begin, we will survey models of organizational structure, from small grassroots, single-issue groups, to large, international, multi-issue organizations. We will also survey various modes of operation, critically analyzing different strategies, tactics, and types of activist/advocacy campaigns, including: non-violent direct action, student organizing campaigns, consumer boycotts, legislative campaigns, and voter initiatives. Local professionals will join us throughout the course to provide expert input on various topics, and to inform students about the types of jobs available in environmental advocacy and the range of skills needed for each. There will be a large emphasis placed on hands-on work on student-defined projects. Students will be evaluated based on class participation as well as completion of course projects.
Level: Introductory. Lab fee: $30. Class limit 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1017Creative Destruction: Understanding 21st Century EconomiesJoseph Schumpeter in 1942 used the phrase "creative destruction" to describe the process by which capitalism creates vibrant economic growth and new technologies and modes of production, but in doing so destroys organizations and relationships linked to older technologies and modes of production, often with adverse effects on individuals and communities. Many observers feel that Schumpeter's description is even more appropriate today, as information technologies and the long arm of multinational capitalism create vast new potential for economic growth and improvement in living standards, while rapidly altering social and environmental relationships, marginalizing those communities unable or unwilling to adapt, and exacerbating existing inequalities. This course gives the student currency in the dynamic issues surrounding 21st Century capitalist economies (including "advanced," developing, and robber/crony capitalisms) using an institutionalist approach; as such, the course focuses more on using a variety of approaches to understanding economic phenomena, and less on imparting the standard body of neoclassical theory (although the latter will be used where appropriate). Fundamental capitalistic structures and processes are examined and contrasted with traditional and command economies. Major attention is given to the role of multinational corporations in the global economy. Other topics include technology, stock markets and investing, money and central banks such as the U.S. Federal Reserve, business cycles, unemployment and inflation, trade and currency issues, consumerism and the nature of work, and whatever other topics students collectively wish to explore. Student evaluation is via multiple diagnostic tools, possibly including quizzes, reading questions, a current event portfolio, written book reviews or issue analysis, and oral exams.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 20. Lab fee:$20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1019Beginning Spanish IThis course is for students who have had no contact with Latin American culture, do not possess basic Spanish language structures and expressions, and have no Spanish vocabulary. The emphasis is on development of the basic skills required in any language - listening, speaking, writing, and reading comprehension. Objective: Students will be able to express themselves orally and through writing, using vocabulary and simple construction of Spanish in the indicative tense. This includes present tense study, vocabulary, numbers, proper nouns, salutations and presentations, present perfect tense, action verbs, the usage of "to be" and "is", future tense, vocabulary, and some usage of "for". Evaluation Criteria: two Compositions, two auditory tests, two writing tests covering grammar, two oral tests, assignments/ homework, class participation.
Level: Introductory. Offered every fall. Class limit: 10. Lab fee: $20.
HS1020Beginning Spanish IIThis course is intended for students with a basic knowledge of grammar, using common vocabulary that is needed for every day situations. Objective: The students will be able to express themselves orally and through writing using subject-verb agreement, basic form in the indicative tense, and an introduction to the imperative moods. It includes a review of the present and future tenses, study of the imperfect tense, action verbs, direct object, proper nouns, the indicative tense, the use of the "to be" and "is" verbs, and an introduction to prepositions. Evaluation Criteria: two Compositions, two auditory tests, two writing tests covering grammar, two oral tests, assignments/ homework, class participation.
Level: Introductory. Offered every fall. Class limit: 10. Lab fee: $20.
HS1021History of the American Conservation Movement
HS1022Human Relations: Principles and PracticeAntoine de Saint-Exupery - World War II French pilot and author of The Little Prince - once noted: "There is but one problem - the problem of human relations....There is no hope or joy except in human relations." Beneath this sanguine notion, however, dwells a complex web of ideas and questions. The purpose of this team-taught course is to explore these underlying issues from two different, but overlapping, perspectives. On the one hand, we will review foundational theories and research from intra-psychic, social and organizational psychology - emphasizing topic areas such as attitude theory and change, social influence, group dynamics, conflict resolution and leadership. On the other hand, we will simultaneously draw on real-world case studies from business and organizational management. The emphasis here will be on issues of personnel assessment and management, market performance, negotiation, crisis management and the role self-knowledge in the "inside game" of commercial enterprise. Connections between these two realms will be drawn via class discussions, presentations from the instructors, and selected visitors with significant backgrounds from a range of organizational, business and government settings. Lessons derived from failure events and the 'cost of not knowing' will be investigated, as well as examples from models of successful human relations experiences. The overall aim of the class will be guided by the ideals and practices of: the psychologist Abraham Maslow, who advised "The best way to see everything is to consider the whole darn thing" and Steve Jobs - founder and CEO of Apple - who expressed his success succinctly as "It was small teams of great people doing wonderful things". Student evaluations will be based on multiple criteria, including class participation, several individual papers and research reports and contribution to team projects.
Level: Introductory. Lab Fee: $40. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1024Debate WorkshopThis class will be conducted as a workshop with an emphasis on providing students with an opportunity to engage in various forms of public debate and argumentation. The majority of work related to the class will be spent participating in “hands on” debate and argument practice. Students will get the chance to take part in wide array of debate formats covering a broad spectrum of topics and themes. In many instances decisions about topics will be student driven and guided by events external to the class. Along with the instructor, students will work together to refine argument structure, strategic argument selection, research practices, presentation skills, and audience analysis. In addition, students will also examine various historical accounts of academic debate practices and the theoretical/social context that gave rise to them. Previous debate and/or public speaking experience is not required. Students of all academic interests and backgrounds are encouraged to participate. Students will be evaluated on their participation in class, completion of process-based assignments, collaboration on team projects, and several individual reports that require outside research. At no point will the final evaluation of students be tied to any standard of what constitutes a "good" debater in a competitive sense. Students who feel that they are less proficient in the areas of argument and public communication should not be worried that this would somehow disadvantage them in terms of grading. While there is no set "lab", this class will require a good deal of time commitment outside of the traditional "classroom" environment. This includes research on the debate topics as well as actual performance time.
Level: Introductory. Class limit: 10. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1026The Renaissance & the Reformation
HS1028Introductory French I
HS1030Ethnographic FieldworkEthnographic research, which uses methods involving conversation with and participation among other people, has very particular dilemmas. How can we, as both researchers and fellow human travelers, navigate the ethical and emotional complexities of doing research with and about people? How can we navigate the problems of power and trust that arise? And what kinds of usable knowledge can we acquire through the fluidity of our own experiences and encounters "in the field"? This course will provide students with a theoretical and practical toolbox for designing, conducting, and writing up ethnographic research projects. Students will design research questions centered on a particular local site, which they will examine outside of class through a variety of ethnographic techniques. We will give particular attention to questions of ethical practice, note taking and documentation, and finally, data analysis. Readings will supplement theoretical and ethical discussions and will illustrate the possibilities and limits of various methods. Evaluation will be based on class participation, a range of assignments throughout the term, and a final paper and presentation reflecting cumulatively on the project and students' own experiences as ethnographers. Class-time will consist of instruction, discussion, and "labs," in which we will workshop individual projects.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1031Blood: Substance and SymbolBlood is a substance with profound imaginative and social power. It ties people together, even when it is spilled. And just as blood produces social bonds, it also divides people and groups according to notions of family, race, and nationhood. Blood both sacralizes and pollutes, entices and disgusts. Blood infects; it also makes people swoon. It also - these days - guarantees instant bestsellers. How can this fluid (mostly water, as we know) do such important social and symbolic work? This course takes blood as a thematic through which students can begin to explore topics that have long been (and continue to be) at the center of cultural and social theory: kinship and blood ties, race, nationhood, pollution, infection and contamination, and rituals of incorporation and transformation (including, perhaps, the current fascination with vampires). Due to the course's theoretical focus, class will be structured around close readings of major contributions to these topics, as well as films. Readings will represent a range of disciplinary approaches, including anthropology, political philosophy, cultural studies, and even classics. Students will be asked to engage carefully with the material both through participation in class and through outside written assignments. Evaluation will be based on class participation (which includes attendance), a presentation, and on assignments conducted outside of class. The course is open to all students, but participants should be prepared to read complex material with care and attention, and should be comfortable in constructing written analyses based on multiple readings.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1032Acadia: Exploring the National Park IdeaUsing Acadia National Park as a case study, this course will explore the various facets of "the national park idea" and what it means for Americans in terms of history and identity. Through direct experiences in one of the "crown jewels" of the park system, the class will examine the historical, ecological, cultural, social, legal, economic, and spiritual context in which national parks are formed and continue to exist in the 21st century. We will work with National Park Service professionals to look at various aspects of park management and day-to-day challenges of implementing the "national park idea." Through weekly field trips, journaling, service learning opportunities, and projects, we will be immersed in the management and experience of Acadia. We will explore, through reading and writing, the broader themes of wilderness preservation, attitudes toward nature, the history of conservation, and the commodification of nature. This experiential class is specifically geared toward first Year students and they will be given preference for enrollment. Assignments will include journal writing, short exercises, a group project/service learning opportunity, short presentations, and papers.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 24. Lab fee: $40. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1033Political Persuasion and Messaging FundamentalsThis class will provide a broad introductory overview of the history, practice, and core concepts that encompass political messaging and persuasion through an empirical examination of grounded applications of such strategies. In order to capitalize on the saliency of the Fall election cycle, the course materials will be based on a series of historical case studies directly tied to American presidential campaigns. Instead of studying various theories of political persuasion in the abstract, we will extract principles that commonly appear in political messaging from these case examples. In addition, students will participate in two collaborative projects. The first will involve tracking political persuasion techniques in campaigns that are occurring in real time during the term. The second will involve students working in teams to produce their own political messaging materials for a hypothetical campaign. The overall goals of the course are three-fold. First, to provide a broad survey of the history of political campaign communication and advertising as it has developed in the United States. Second, to confront some of the pragmatic issues that go into producing messaging strategies for electoral candidates. Third, to help students cultivate a more critical approach to analyzing the political messages that they confront in their daily lives. The class will be highly interactive with discussion being the primary mode of instruction. However, there will also lecture components that provide the historical basis for the case studies we are examining. Final evaluation will based on a combination of class participation, several take home essay assignments, the contemporary tracking assignment, and a final creative project in which student produce their own campaign materials. The class is open to all students, regardless of their experience in politics or their knowledge of American history. It is well suited for introductory students who are interested in politics, human persuasion, and mass communication. However, it is also equally valuable for advanced students seeking to deepen their understanding of political persuasion.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: None. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS1034Media and Society: Readings in Mass CommunicationThis course is a broadly defined survey of various areas of study that encompass the field of mass communication and media studies. The primary goal of the course is to expose students to the widest array of traditional and cutting edge theories and theorists that inform the way we think about and explain the role media plays in our society. This includes traditional modes of mass communication such as print journalism, radio, and television as well as more recent forms of mass communication made possible by advances in technology such as Facebook, Twitter, streaming media, etc. Looking to the future, we will explore the possibility that new media technology is moving us towards the seemingly paradoxical emergence of a micro targeted, mass communicated society. Given the broad range of material to be covered, there will be an emphasis on covering a breadth of topics as opposed to spending a great deal of time exploring a few particular areas in depth. As such, students should consider this course a starting point to help them kick start their future interests in these areas. Throughout the term we will explore a wide range of subjects relating to traditional and new media content, form, structures, effects, and processes. In doing so, we will cover various attempts to get at these issues from both qualitative and quantitative methodological standpoints. While there will be readings from traditional scholars in the communication discipline, we will also incorporate a broader interdisciplinary range of texts that connect the study of human communication to various other fields including, but certainly not limited to, political science, sociology, semiotics, rhetoric, anthropology, cultural studies, and psychology. The class will be primarily discussion driven with an emphasis on selected readings that represent key areas of study in the field. Students will be evaluated based on a combination of class participation, periodic short form essays, individual presentations, and group research projects.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: None. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1035Puzzles, Paradoxes and Weird ThingsThis course is an introduction to philosophy and critical thinking by considering traditional conceptual and philosophical problems such as free will, problems of perception, determinism and Zeno's paradoxes. After an examination of the cannons of scientific proof and techniques of critical analysis various beliefs in ghosts, alien abduction, telepathy, crop-circles, special creation, astrology, 'psychic science' and other popular beliefs are examined in detail. One or more take-home tests are required and a final project of the student's choosing consisting of an investigation of a disputed belief or practice is also expected.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 20. Lab Fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1036COA's Foodprint: Our Local Food SystemThe food supply for most cities and small towns in the U.S. depends on food grown as efficiently as possible-that is, producing high yields at low costs; manufactured into forms that are less perishable; and shipped long distances from centralized warehouses. This food system is responsible at least in part for some of the nation's most troubling environmental and health challenges, from water pollution to obesity to climate change. Students in this class will learn about food systems and why many people consider the U.S. food system to be "broken". College of the Atlantic is trying to create a food system that avoids many of the shortcomings of the broken U.S. system. But how well are we doing, and how do we know?
Students taking this class will acquire an understanding of food systems by examining the "backstory" and impacts of COA's food system. They will learn the source of COA's foods and where food waste goes; who makes decisions about food purchasing and why; and impacts of the purchasing and consumption decisions on our college community, region and beyond. They will examine how impacts differ when foods are sourced locally, within a state or region, or internationally. Other topics and issues include methods of analysis to compare environmental and social impacts of different production and consumption options, basic nutrition principles and proposals for more sustainable diets, motivations for food choices and how people acquire them, social marketing for healthy eating, and supply and demand for foods grown with environmentally - or socially - responsible methods.
This course is an introduction to the Farms & Food Projects class, in which students design projects or farm enterprises to try to improve COA's food system or extend work that has been started already, and the Fixing Food Systems class, in which students comprehensively analyze innovations in food systems from inputs through consumption. Students will be evaluated on participation in classes and field trips, biweekly reflective journal entries and individual or small-group assignments.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none. Lab Fee: $25. Class limit: 18. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1037The Middle Ages: Power, Religiosity and Everyday LifeThe Middle Ages, affectionately known as the "Dark Ages" by people who did not live in them, was a crucial period in the social, political, and cultural development of what we now call Europe. The course will provide an overview of the major trends in the Mediterranean World and Northern Europe from the fall of Rome to the fifteenth century. We will focus on religiosity and the changes in popular forms of religious belief as well as the everyday workings of the political, economic and social order. The course will be a survey class that includes project-based learning that seeks to cover the period in a synthetic way. A major theme will be the way that in the Middle Ages religion was the arbiter of truth in ways almost incomprehensible in the modern secular world. The main thematic thrust of the course is to explore the fragments of classical philosophical problems and new streams of religious orthodoxy as they collide in a series of intellectual and pragmatic struggles in the period. By using heretics and saints as emblems of the contours of the debate about truth and knowledge, this class explores the early tremors of the clash between faith and reason that would rock the western world, and shape it, between roughly 1000 AD and the beginnings of the Renaissance in the fourteenth century. Students will read primary and secondary literature covering various aspects of the period. There will be a mid-term take home exam and a final project paper dealing with an institution, a person, a religious or philosophical school or movement or an idea.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 25. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS1038Introduction to EconomicsThis course gives students currency in the leading economic theories (models, concepts, vocabulary, etc.) used in the analysis and policy formation regarding economic activity, domestic economies, and international economic relations. Topics will include an introduction to competing economic perspectives, alternative normative criteria (e.g. efficiency, distribution, sustainability), markets, supply and demand analysis, risk and uncertainty, asymmetric information, unemployment and inflation, aggregate supply and demand, monetary and fiscal policies, financial bubbles, and international trade and finance. The course includes a lab session that will emphasize problem-solving methods and use of models, while much of classroom time will be dedicated to the application of models to real world situations and current events. This course should be of particular interest to students interested in business, international environmental issues, globalization, inequality and economic justice, and a host of other topics. Evaluation will be based on weekly homework assignments emphasizing technical proficiency in basic mathematical modeling, along with four quizzes and classroom participation.
Level: Introductory; Prerequisites: none; Class limit: 15; Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS QR
HS1039Political Persuasion and Messaging FundamentalsThis class will provide a broad introductory overview of the history, practice, and core concepts that encompass political messaging and persuasion through an empirical examination of grounded applications of such strategies. In order to capitalize on the saliency of the Fall election cycle, the course materials will be based on a series of historical case studies directly tied to American presidential campaigns. Instead of studying various theories of political persuasion in the abstract, we will extract principles that commonly appear in political messaging from these case examples. In addition, students will participate in two collaborative projects. The first will involve tracking political persuasion techniques in campaigns that are occurring in real time during the term. The second will involve students working in teams to produce their own political messaging materials for a hypothetical campaign. The overall goals of the course are three-fold. First, to provide a broad survey of the history of political campaign communication and advertising as it has developed in the United States. Second, to confront some of the pragmatic issues that go into producing messaging strategies for electoral candidates. Third, to help students cultivate a more critical approach to analyzing the political messages that they confront in their daily lives. The class will be highly interactive with discussion being the primary mode of instruction. However, there will also lecture components that provide the historical basis for the case studies we are examining. Final evaluation will based on a combination of class participation, several take home essay assignments, the contemporary tracking assignment, and a final creative project in which student produce their own campaign materials. The class is open to all students, regardless of their experience in politics or their knowledge of American history. It is well suited for introductory students who are interested in politics, human persuasion, and mass communication. However, it is also equally valuable for advanced students seeking to deepen their understanding of political persuasion.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: None. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1040Public Speaking WorkshopThis class will be conducted as a workshop with an emphasis on students producing increasingly advanced speeches for public performance and/or consumption. We will cover a wide variety of areas including those related to constructing the speech in advance (invention and arrangement), as well as those related to the actual performance of the text (style, memory, and execution). While the primary goal of the class is to create an environment in which students can improve these vital public communication skills, another important goal is to cultivate critical and respectful listening skills (which are themselves vital public communication skills). A wide variety of speaking genres will be covered during the term, though there will be a strong emphasis on public advocacy and persuasion.
This class is designed for students with varying levels of public speaking backgrounds. A diverse array of experiences, skills, and strengths helps foster a collaborative and supportive speaking environment. Throughout the term students will work on individual projects, in pairs, and in larger collaborative groups. There will be a minimal focus on theoretical questions in favor of a "hands on" approach to constructing speeches. Students will be evaluated on a number of "process" oriented assignments. Final evaluation will be relative to individual participation in the process and not to an objective scale of public speaking talent. As such, students who feel that they are less proficient in the area of public communication should not be worried that this would somehow disadvantage them in terms of grading.
Level: Introductory. Class limit: 10. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS1045Politics of Israel
HS1046Inroduction to Economics & the Economy
HS148Philosophy of Science
This course examines both the nature of science and its role in molding the modern world. The historic origins of science are explored from the late middle ages through the 18th century, in order to present clearly the development of key concepts and to contrast science with other views of the world it displaced. Particular attention is paid to the work of Galileo and Newton. General issues covered include theory formation, laws, confirmation and evidence, reductionism, determinism and teleology. Philosophical problems raised by such areas as evolution theory, quantum mechanics, feminist theory, and modern cosmology provide additional topics as interest dictates and time permits. Level: Intermediate. Offered occasionally. Class limit: 20. *HS*
HS160Reason and Ethics
In this course we consider problems concerning the nature of ethics and the explanation of behavior as they arose in Greek philosophy and culture and as they are considered in contemporary discussions of ethics. The main text is M. Nussbaum's The Fragility of Goodness, and the writings of Plato, Aristotle, and the Greek dramatists are also explored. Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: Two philosophy courses or permission of the instructor. Class limit: 15. *HS*
HS2010Literature, Science, and SpiritualityA survey of Anglo-American literature from the Scientific Revolution to the present. Focuses on the ongoing debate about the role of science in Western culture, the potential benefits and dangers of scientific experimentation, the spiritual, religious, social and political issues that come about with the Ages of Discovery and Reason, and their treatment in literature. Specific debates include concerns over what is "natural," whether knowledge is dangerous, the perils of objectivity, and the mind/body dichotomy; works include Shelley's Frankenstein, Ibsen's An Enemy of the People, Brecht's Galileo, Lightman's Einstein's Dreams and Naylor's Mama Day as well as short stories and poems. Writing-focus ed option.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisite: Writing Seminar I. Offered every two or three years. Lab fee: $10. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2011Nineteenth Century American Women
HS2012Personality and Social Development
HS2013Philosophy of NatureBecause of the number of serious environmental problems that face the modern world, the theories and images that guide our interaction with nature have become problematic. This course examines various attempts to arrive at a new understanding of our role in the natural world and compares them with the philosophies of nature that have guided other peoples in other times and other places. Topics range from taoism and native american philosophies to deep ecology and scientific ecological models. Readings include such books as Uncommon Ground, Walden, and Practice of the Wild.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Offered occasionally. Class limit 20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2014Philosophy of ReligionThis course examines the nature and justification of religious beliefs concerning the existence of god, the soul, and the afterlife. A wide range of views from both eastern and western traditions are explored and the writings of several philosophers such as William James and Martin Buber are examined in detail. Particular attention is paid to the nature of mysticism and problems concerning the use and limits of reason. Introductory/Intermediate. Offered occasionally. Class size limited to 20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2015The Age of Reason and the EnlightenmentThis course represents a contextual approach to the study of the history of philosophy and combines the critical evaluation of philosophical theories with an examination of the cultural conditions which either influence or are conditioned by them. The course examines the crucial role played by the philosophies and institutions of 17th and 18th century Europe in forming the nature of the modern world and focuses in particular on those aspects of the culture that are of special concern to contemporary critics of modern culture. The work of Bacon, Hobbes, Descartes, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant are examined in the context of the development of the scientific, industrial, and democratic revolutions.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Class limit: 20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS2016Chinese PhilosophyThis is a course in the study of Chinese philosophy and culture. The philosophies of Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism are examined in detail and their influence on the arts and culture of China is explored. Eastern and western views on nature, human nature, and society are compared and contrasted.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 20. Offered every other year. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2017City/Country: Literary Landscapes 1860-1920This class focuses on American fiction from the realist/naturalist period (roughly 1860-1920), a time when enormous changes were occurring in and on the American landscape. Increasing urbanization, immigration, and industrialization corresponded both with a desire for 'realistic' fiction of social problems, and nostalgic stories of a more 'realistic' rural life. For the first time there was a national literature, resulting from the capabilities of large publishing houses, urban centers and mass production - but this national literature was acutely self-conscious of regional differences, and especially of the tension between city and country. As writers tried to paint the American landscape in literature, their works subsumed major social issues to place and formal arguments about the true nature of realistic description. Examining works that portray factory towns, urban tenements, midwestern prairies, New England villages, and the broad spectrum of American landscapes, we look at how a complex, turbulent, multi-ethnic, and simultaneously urban and rural American culture defined itself, its realism, and thus its gender, class, race, and social relations and sense of values, against these landscapes. There are two extra, evening classes during week 7 (Short Fiction Week), and a modest lab fee. Evaluation is based on weekly response papers, two short papers, and a short fiction project, as well as class participation.
Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisite: Writing Seminar I (or the equivalent). Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2018Left, Right and Future: Alternative Political PhilosophiesThis course looks at some of the key philosophies behind alternative political systems people around the world use to govern themselves or propose to use in the future. The aims of the course are: 1.) to increase specific knowledge about some important examples of alternative political philosophies and systems that embody them and 2) to develop analytic skills for understanding key systematic features of these alternatives, for evaluating their key merits and flaws, andn for advocating alternatives. Readings will include Plato's Republic, The Communist Manifesto, selections from fascist, liberal, and anarchist writers as well as some case study readings in comparative politics. There will be a strong emphasis on discussion skills and writing. Evaluation will be based on class participation and a series of short papers. Especially recommended for people interested in community organizing, public policy work and education.
Level: Introductory/intermediate. Prerequisites: None. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2019Community Planning and Decision MakingAlbert Einstein once observed that "no problem can be solved from the same consciousness that created it. We must learn to see the world anew". If Einstein's idea is accurate about how humans understand the universe, it is likewise true of how we plan and manage our relationships with the environment. One of the primary aims of human ecology is to explore new ways to envision human environment relations. Within its integrative perspective, scientific knowledge and human aesthetics can be combined in ways that enrich human communities as well as value and protect the rest of the living world. The purpose of this course is to provide students with a foundation of theory and practical skills in ecological policy and community planning. A broad range of ideas and methodologies will be explored. Using real examples of current issues - such as sprawl, smart growth, gateway communities, watershed based regional planning, land trusts, and alternative transportation systems. We will be joined by the actual leaders of these changes locally and state wide in Maine. We will also examine emerging methodologies that emphasize participatory planning, community capacity-building, and empowering marginalized groups. These models and ideas will be further compared with prominent approaches and case studies from elsewhere around the country. As a part of current ideas about community planning and policy, the course also introduces small group collaboration techniques, and the use of computers to enhance complex decision processes. A field component will take advantage of varied external opportunities - including town meetings, conferences, and public events. Evaluations will be based on class participation, several short research papers, and end of term small group projects.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Class limit: 20. Lab Fee: $40. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2020Geographic Information Systems I: Foundations & ApplicationsEver-rising numbers of people and their impact on the Earth's finite resources could lead to disaster, not only for wildlife and ecosystems but also for human populations. As researchers gather and publish more data, GIS becomes vital to graphically revealing the inter-relationships between human actions and environmental degradation. Much of what threatens the earth and its inhabitants is placed-based. Solutions require tools to help visualize these places and prescribe solutions. This is what GIS is about. Built on digital mapping, geography, databases, spatial analysis, and cartography, GIS works as a system to enable people to better work together using the best information possible. For these reasons, some level of competency is often expected for entry into many graduate programs and jobs, particularly in natural resources, planning and policy, and human studies. The flow of this course has two tracts, technical and applied. The course begins with training in the basics of the technology. Then, skills are applied to projects that address real-world issues. Project work composes the majority of course work and each student has the opportunity to develop their own project. Because GIS provides tools to help address many kinds of issues, GIS lends itself well to the theory of thinking globally and acting locally. Projects often utilize the extensive data library for the Acadia region developed by students since the lab was founded in 1988. The GIS Lab acts as a service provider to outside organizations and students can tap into the resources of a broad network of groups and individuals working towards a more sustainable future. Course evaluations are partially based on the on-time completion of exercises and problem sets. Most of the evaluation is based on critique of student independent final project work and related documentation.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate, Pre-requisites: Basic computer literacy. Class Limit: 8. Lab Fee: $75.
HS2023Philosophy at the MoviesThe enormous success of movies has proven their entertainment value, but movies have also been used to explore concepts and situations that are on the frontiers of imagination and serve as a unique medium for articulating the limits of human possibility. Films can not only be taken as illustrations of various philosophical issues but can also be seen as a unique way of working through philosophical issues that can hardly be stated in other media. This class will examine a series of films that raise issues dealing with the nature and limits of the human and natural worlds. Besides the usual discussion classes, there will be evening "lab" classes each week devoted to screening films of conceptual interest. A series of short analytical papers will be required. May be taken as a Writing Focus course.
Level: Introductory/intermediate. Class limit: 20.
Meets the following degree requirements: WFO
HS2024Introduction to the Philosophy of Mind
HS2025A Woman's Place: In the Poem, at Home, on the RoadThe place "no map could show . . " So Adrienne Rich describes the moment igniting one poem of a traveler in this genre on the page. Just where is a woman’s place? Where does she come from? What does she leave or return to? How does she remember, observe, and name the worlds she is and the worlds she discovers in the shape and making of a poem? These questions will accompany us both as points of departure and anchors for discussion in reading poems from women inviting us to track the seasons on a Cumbrian sheep farm, taste raspberries in the snow in Moscow, muse on home by a waterfall in Brazil, enter a Polish café with a terrorist, and turn circles barefoot on a Vermont hillside. For every poem we share, seeing and articulating the architecture will be primary. Please come prepared to read closely and aloud, to name what strikes you as a reader developing a vocabulary of critical precision and the moment’s truths, and to gather a portfolio of original poems tracing your journey to this place with no map but the words you find.
Level: Introductory/intermediate. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $20.
HS2026Practical Skills in Community Development
HS2031Classic Shorts: Saving Places"What place has place in fiction?" Writer Eudora Welty offers us this question in an essay she wrote in 1954, then goes on to contemplate: "Location is the crossroads of circumstances . . . the heart's field . . . identity. . . . Place, to the writer at work, is seen in a frame. . . . a brimming one." What brims in this frame, Welty says, is not only a place of "original awareness"-our roots and where they can lead us-but also how "one place comprehended can make us understand other places better." How many ways to measure the distance "between the localized raw material of life and its outcome as art"? What places might a story help us save? Where and how do we recognize the places that save us? What is-and isn't-present? In this section of Classic Shorts, we'll navigate these questions through the genre, as the writers and stories we'll encounter take us from a camping trip by a river to follow the currents of memory to the terrace of a Roman restaurant where two old friends unexpectedly disclose their pasts. A blind date at a carnival in Ireland, a safe house in South Africa turned perilous, a dance floor with a drunken cowboy in Montana-these are among the places we'll visit, saved by a writer on the page. We'll also consider how some literal means of transport-a rental car, a train compartment, a piece of furniture deliberately left behind-can preserve atmospheres and become the architecture for what William Trevor calls "the art of the glimpse" in describing the short story ("an explosion of truth . . . concerned with the total exclusion of meaninglessness") and which Margaret Atwood references as "a score for voice . . . keeping faith . . . with the language . . . told with as much intentness as if the teller's life depended on it." Is it possible for a life to depend on a place? A sip from a cup of pure spring water. A friend or stranger in need of comfort. How one generation holds its origins, landmarks, and destinations to deliver to another in the brimming frame of a story.
Seeing and articulating what we believe about how each story is made to save what it contains-its characters and landscapes, gestures and metaphors, the instincts and technical decisions behind every page-will be part of our daily navigation, including a weekly out-loud story lab. Students will be expected to gather initial responses and develop critical inquiries story by story, with a midterm conference and final paper (original short-story option encouraged) required. Evaluations will be based on the attention to language as precision and possibility in this deliberately contained form-what level of risk, what quality of articulation and follow-through to see, shape, and save a story? Please come prepared to read closely, discuss openly, and experiment in the art of the glimpse.
Level: Introductory/intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2032Introduction to SustainabilityIntroduction to Sustainability is a gateway into current thinking and practice on sustainability in multiple fields. It will use examples of people and organizations trying to move toward more sustainable practices in city planning, transportation, food systems, energy, business operations, housing design, consumption, waste disposal and other areas. Guest speakers who are working to implement more sustainable practices in their businesses and society will help introduce students to the most current thinking and practice in their fields. Although most of the class will be grounded in specific examples, we will begin with controversies over the meaning of sustainability and address how it can be measured and evaluated. The last part of the class will deal with socio-cultural changes needed to move individuals and societies toward more sustainable practices and how these can become part of the warp and woof of the way we live. Students will be evaluated based on participation in class discussion, regular journal entries, completion of individual and group assignments, and independent projects and presentations that explore and share practices in a specific field of particular interest to each student.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 18. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2033Call of the Land: Agrarian Arts & WordsIn a recent video produced for Maine Farmland Trust, a young farmer comments: "Deep down, everybody wants to be a farmer." Many COA students would agree... but why is it that farming is so appealing to us? What does is mean to have a connection with land? What has US society lost, as people have lost their agricultural roots and connections with how and where food is produced? Call of the Land: Agrarian Arts & Words is about the influences that agrarian thinking and arts have had on US society and our current views of farming and land. We will trace the rise of agrarianism from the Tao and Virgil's Georgics through modern agrarians, such as Wendell Berry, Norman Wirzba, Barbara Kingsolver and Vandana Shiva. We will be looking closely at the intersection between the agrarian ideal and sustainability, and how agrarian ideals have fed political protest movements such as the Grange Movement and Farmers Alliances since the late 1800s. Although the main focus of the course will be on agrarian essays and other prose, we will incorporate ways that visual arts, fiction and music have both reflected and shaped the ways that perceptions of land and agriculture have developed. Guest lectures by several COA faculty members and people outside COA will complement class discussion and activities. The class may take a weekend field trip to visit art museums in New England with good collections of farm landscape paintings (such as the Farnsworth in Rockland, Maine; the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston; and the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford). Students will be evaluated based on participation in class discussion and activities, required essays spaced through the term, and regular journal entries. Each student will select a medium and theme to explore in more depth for a final presentation to the rest of class.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: None. Class limit: 16. Lab Fee: $35. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2034Ethics: The History of a Problematic
HS2035Classic Shorts: Changing WeatherWeather as fact. Weather as atmosphere. Weather as metaphor. The seasons of change on our planet, in a lifetime, evolving. Heat, dust, natural disasters, questions of fertility, water, human intervention. Who survives what, what grows or doesn't, where and how. The short story offers a lens on all of these, and the elements we'll encounter in this section of Classic Shorts will lead us into discussions meteorological, contemplative, and literary. What happens if the sky starts raining yellow dust-fallout or pollen? Who is or isn't on the Moscow train the summer a family lives in a village house fifty feet from the railway station and why does this summer, this setting, matter? Bonfire conversations on a beach following an earthquake in Japan, lies that lead to truths and layers of memory in the chill of an Etruscan museum, dark storms and unexpected harvests in a Pakistani servant girl's life, an Irish spring and the healing destinations of a priest on someone else's wedding day-these are among the stories we'll discover and explore as architecture in this genre William Trevor calls "the art of the glimpse... an explosion of truth... concerned with the total exclusion of meaninglessness" and which Margaret Atwood describes as "a score for voice... keeping faith... with the language... told with as much intentness as if the teller's life depended on it." Seeing and articulating what we believe about how each story is made-its characters and landscapes, gestures and metaphors, the instincts and technical decisions behind every page-will be part of our daily weather. Students will be expected to gather and develop critical inquiries story by story, with a midterm conference and final paper (original short-story option encouraged) required. Evaluations will be based on the attention to language as precision and possibility in this deliberately contained form-what level of risk, what quality of articulation and follow-through to see and shape a story? Please come prepared to read closely, discuss openly, and experiment in the art of the glimpse.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2038Gender, Politics, and Science in Fairy Tales of the WorldWhy do fairy tales capture the attention of adults and children all over the world and endure in popular literary and cinematic forms? What do they reveal to psychologists, biologists, historians, linguists, artists, anthropologists, and educators? Do they politicize or de-politicize? socialize or subvert? What is the postfeminist, postmodern response to the Brothers Grimm? What do fairy tales convey about animal behavior, entomology, and cosmology? How might the tales shape human limitations, moral values, and aspirations? This course will explore the story-telling and re-telling of literary, cultural, and scientific stories from a comparative perspective, imagining their interpretations and how they may be re-told with an eye toward new understandings of human interrelationships, of a given sociohistorical moment, the culture of COA, and the larger culture. Students will read fairy tales, view three films--"The Little Mermaid" (USA), "Chunhyang" (Korea), and "Pan's Labyrinth" (Spain)--and discuss academic pieces by writers such as Cristina Bacchilega, Bruno Bettelheim, Ruth Bottigheimer, Michel Butor, Italo Calvino, Claude Lévi-Strauss, and Jack Zipes. Reflections may include distinctions between fairy tale and myth; recurrent motifs and patterns; the history and variations of individual tales and motifs; social, sexual, moral, scientific and political content, with emphasis on race, gender, and class structure; and contemporary works inspired by traditional tales. Students will be evaluated on two short papers; one creative project that may be expressed in writing, visual art, music, or dance; and a final assignment that will take the form of a class project.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2040Plato and "the Footnotes" through FoucaultAlfred North Whitehead once commented that the "The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato." This course will explore Plato's original body of ideas and the methods he used to develop them through careful reading of a large number of dialogues and selections from key philosophers' responses to them. Key themes will include the relationships between ethics, metaphysics and epistemology, the theory of Ideas, the nature of political life, the roles of friendship and Eros in life, "philo-sophia" as a way of life, and the figure of Socrates and Socratic method.
Readings will include Plato's LYSIS, MENO, LACHES, EUTHYPHRO, APOLOGY, CRITO, SYMPOSIUM, PHAEDRUS, GORGIAS and selections from others such as THE REPUBLIC, TIMAEUS, and PARMENIDES. In parallel with these texts we will also read very short selections from thinkers such as the Pre-Socratics, Aristotle, Descartes, Kant, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Dewey, de Beauvoir, Foucault, and Alyson Jaggar. For historical context we will also read selections from Pierre Hadot and others and study selections from the art and other key cultural documents including texts by Aristophanes, Xenophon and Thucydides.
By the end of the course students should understand and be able to articulate key ideas and problematics in Plato and place them in their cultural context. They should also be able to critically analyze texts and ideas in oral discussion and in short written pieces by examining them for internal consistency and the adequacy with which they respond to the challenges presented by the problematics of their own cultural setting as well as the light cast on them by critiques of subsequent philosophers. Students will be evaluated on class participation, a series of short papers providing careful textual analysis, an in-class presentation on one of the dialogues and/or a subsequent philosopher’s response to it, and participation in a performance of some portion of one of the dialogues.
Level: Introductory/intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2042Italian History, Language and CultureThis course will introduce students to the historical frameworks and cultural forms that characterize contemporary Italy and will provide a foundation in conversational Italian. While "Italy" as a place and even a brand (as in "made in Italy") has enormous imaginative and romantic allure around the globe, the complexity and diversity that characterize this country are not always acknowledged. Drawing on historical, literary, and anthropological sources, as well as media, art, and popular culture, students will develop knowledge and tools through which to approach their immersion experience in the spring with care and subtlety. Additionally, through weekly class meetings, outside work, and workshops on evenings and weekends, students will acquire a foundation in grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation from which to begin their immersion language studies in Italy. Throughout, students will be asked to reflect on and develop the experiential field-based learning projects that they will be undertaking in the spring and will craft a proposal and set of questions to guide their work. We will also discuss ethics and methods that inform experiential research. Evaluation will be based on participation and engagement, commitment to a project of common learning, and written and oral assessments.
Level: Introductory/ Intermediate. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2043Conflict Resolution Across CulturesHow does conflict arise and how can we best deal with it? This course combines a study of some major theoretical perspectives with lab work practicing skills and disciplines associated with different traditions of conflict resolution, conflict transformation and peacemaking. We will look at case studies at the intrapersonal and interpersonal through global levels and in a variety of cross-cultural settings. The goals of the course are to help each student: 1. develop the skills to better observe, analyse, participate in and reform practices and institutions that people use to deal with differences. 2. collaborate in teams in doing the research and planning needed to undertake such work effectively, and 3. collaborate in teams to train others in such skills. The formats of the class will alternate between lectures, discussions, films, role plays, group exercises, interviews with guest visitors, and other activities to practice skills and reflect on experiences. Readings for the course will include Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In by Bruce M. Patton, William L. Ury, Roger Fisher; Preparing for Peace: Conflict Transformation Across Cultures by John Paul Lederach and a selection of other short texts. In “methods groups”, students will form teams that will study a method of dealing with differences [e. g. mediation, facilitation, non-violent direct action, meditation, nonverbal communication, gaming strategies, etc.] and offer the rest of the class a training session on this. Students will be evaluated on: 1. ways in which class their participation, homework, methods group trainings, personal training manual, and final reflective essay demonstrate progress on the three course goals, 2. the ways they make appropriate use of the theories and methods studied in the course, and 3. the clarity and effectiveness of their oral and written presentations.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2045Contemporary Social Movements: BoliviaSocial struggles for human rights, indigenous community autonomy, ecological sustainability, equality, sovereignty and other concerns invoke values, draw on methods and appeal to allies from the larger international context and yet play out with their own very distinctive dynamics at community, regional and national levels. When social movements achieve political power that enables them to use the state in advancing their goals, these dynamics become even more complex. An especially rich and important case study of these complex dynamics is provided by the struggles leading up to the election of Bolivia’s first indigenous president, Evo Morales, and the subsequent efforts to establish a pluri-national state in which rights of Nature ("Pacha Mama") and of indigenous communities are embedded in a vision of sustainability as "Vivir Bien" (living well as opposed to living "ever better" with more GDP).
The goals of this course are to introduce students to the history and current dynamics of Bolivia with the aim to: a.) develop understanding of development issues as applied to Bolivia’s current context; b.) develop abilities to use theories of social change to interpret and critically analyze cases like Bolivia, and c.) develop their skills in research to generate useful knowledge for activists and change agents. The class format will include readings, discussion, visiting lectures from other COA faculty, short analytical papers, and term long projects in which students will define and pursue research on a specific topic such as the struggles over issues related to water, food, climate change, coca production or indigenous culture. Students will also organize poster presentations as part of the October session of the Society for Human Ecology in which a session on the concept of Vivir Bien in Andean countries is being organized. Evaluation will be based on the extent to which student work in discussion and in these papers, presentations, and other activities provide evidence of achieving the three goals for the course. Readings will include shorter excerpts from texts in general theories of social change by Charles Tilly, Bill Moyer, Paulo Freire and others and extensive readings related to Bolivia’s geography, culture, history, economy and politics. Some summer reading will be assigned as preparation for the course.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: Permission of the instructor. Class limit: 18. Lab fee: $35. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2048Food, Power and Justice
HS2049Marvelous Terrible Place: Human Ecology of NewfoundlandWhere is the largest population of humpback whales in the world, the largest caribou herd in North America, the only confirmed Viking settlement in North America, and Paleozoic water bottled for consumption? The remote Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador presents a stunning landscape, an astoundingly rich ecological setting, and a tragic history of poverty amidst an incredible natural resource, the northern cod fishery, that was ultimately destroyed. The province has been alternately invaded or occupied by different groups of Native Americans along with Norseman, Basques, French, British, and the U.S. military, because of its strategic location and rich fishing and hunting grounds. One of the first and one of the last British colonies, this richest of fisheries produced a very class based society, composed of a wealthy few urban merchants and an highly exploited population of fishing families often living on the edge of survival. But within the past 50 years, Newfoundland society has been forced to evolve. The provincial government looks towards oil and mineral exploitation to turn around the economy, while ex-fishermen consider eco- and cultural tourism with growing ambivalence. This then is our setting, and background, for an intense examination of the human ecology of this province; the relationship between humans and their environment, sometimes successful, sometimes otherwise, the struggle between the tenuous grasp of civilization and this marvelous, terrible place. To do this we will discuss various readings, examine case studies and review the natural and human history of this unique province. Our learning will culminate with a two-week trip to Newfoundland to examine its issues firsthand. Evaluation will be based on class and field trip participation, responses to reading questions, a field journal, and a final project.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: Signature of Instructor. Lab fee: $850. Class limit 15 Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2051Agriculture and Biotechnology
HS2052Popular PsychologyHumans have an inherent need to make sense of their lives. Their search may be simply to improve everyday experience or it may involve a life-long quest for meaning and wisdom. Nonetheless, in every age, they have found written advice to address these perennial needs: ranging from the Bhagavad-Gita and the Bible, through Marcus Aurelieus' Meditations and Ralph Waldo Emerson's Self-Reliance AF to the ever-popular, self-help book. In the past half-century of the New York Times' Best Sellers List, there has usually been one or more popular psychology books on the list. Hundreds of millions have been sold and read. Some focus on how to improve relationships, raise children, or build wealth; others promise ways to discover happiness, expand memory, or find a deeper self. Their authors may be serious scholars, well-known psychologists, insightful leaders, or shallow self promoters. The purpose of this course is to critically examine the literature of popular psychology: to explore why people are or are not so drawn to this literary genre and to analyze its deeper psychological significance. A further goal is to evaluate how and when they do work or why they don't. These questions will be guided by an in depth evaluation of the implicit structure of each book, as well as a comparative mapping of it within the theories and methods of professional psychology. In order to investigate a broad cross-section of styles and themes, we begin with several 'classic' popular books as a common foundation. Thereafter, we move on to more varied approaches within small groups and individually. Evaluations will be based on participation in class discussions, several short papers, shared book reviews, and final paper comparing popular and academic psychology.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Class Limit: 15. Lab fee: $25 Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2053This Changes Everything: Cases in Future StudiesThis course examines strengths and weaknesses of different ways of dealing with the future by looking in depth at two case studies: climate change and artificial intelligence. When dealing with potential existential threats of these sorts, what are the powers and limits of specific methods for trying to know the future and/or act with regard to it? Of what use, for example, are tools such as trend spotting, extrapolation, quantitative modeling, prediction markets, SWOT analysis, imaging, narrative science fiction, scenario building, or Delphi processes of consensus? And what precisely are they useful for? Learning about the inevitability, probability or possibility of various futures? Or perhaps learning about ourselves our societies and the ways in which reality is currently constructed? And how can we frame meanings for our lives, our work, our communities and the social movements in which we may participate in order to act with integrity an d hope in the face of pressing problems that are "wicked" in character and may call for dramatic transformations? Readings on the climate change case study will focus on Naomi Klein's THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING: CAPITALISM VS. THE CLIMATE and critics of her work. Readings on artificial intelligence will include, for instance, James Barrat's OUR FINAL INVENTION and selections by Ray Kurzweil and Peter Bostrum. Readings on Futures Studies as a field of study and the specific methods within it will include, for example, selections from James Dator's anthology, ADVANCING FUTURES: FUTURE STUDIES IN HIGHER EDUCATION, the Millenium Project's STATE OF THE FUTURE, and works by Alvin Toffler, John Naisbitt, Eliezer Yudkowsky and Elise Boulding, as well as articles from THE FUTURIST. The course will include a weekend workshop in futures invention using methods developed by Warren Ziegler and Elise Boulding. This workshop will be open to public particip ation. Members of the COA community interested in renewing the College curriculum are especially encouraged to participate. The course goals are to: 1.) increase students' understanding of the possible uses and limitations of the broad range of methods in Futures Studies; 2.) develop student's abilities to apply and critically assess others' applications of these methods in substantive cases dealing with wicked problems; and 3.) develop students insight into the complexities and possible ways of addressing issues related to climate change and developments in artificial intelligence. Assignments will include a critical analysis paper on each of the two case studies, an inclass report on a Futures Studies/Action method, a reflective essay on the futures invention workshop, and a problem set on methods and their applications to the two case studies. Evaluation will be based on the extent to which class participation and performance in the assignments demonstrates significant advance in achieving the three core goals of the course.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2054Theory and Method in the Study of ReligionReligion. What is it? Is it a cultural, sociological, psychological, economic, legal, physiological, or political category? How does the term translate between languages and across time and space? What are the different sets of institutions, practices, belief systems, and contexts within which what we call "religion" is located? How can what we call religion be studied? In this course, we will respond to these questions by looking historically, cross culturally, and cross-disciplinarily as well as inter-disciplinarily at how the term religion and the concepts and practices this term carries with it have been used. We will address questions of epistemology (how do we know what we know), and ask ourselves about the status of knowledge itself in the context of religious studies as a disciplinary formation.
Over the course of the term, we will draw on classic texts in religious studies, as well as from anthropology, history, feminist theory, postcolonial studies, psychoanalysis, and from ethnographic studies of both monotheistic and polytheistic belief systems, and of Western and Eastern religions. In doing so, we will engage some of the key debates about the status of religion in relation to politics, including in terms of armed conflict, colonialism and anti-colonial struggle, European Enlightenment, the notion of secularism, debates about gender and sex, and the place of religion in contexts of liberal democracy and modern nationalisms. We will address concepts such as: the sacred and the profane, totem and taboo, spirit, the divine, sublime, purity, danger, violence, peace, holiness, sacrifice, ritual, superstition, ghosts, faith, evidence, truth, secularism, possession, spirit, prayer, resurrection, messianism, and alterity. Readings will include texts by Benedict Anderson, Talal Asad, Adam Becker, Thomas Beidelman, Walter Benjamin, Maurice Bloch, Daniel Boyarin, Jonathan Boyarin, Jacques Derrida, Mary Douglas, Emile Durkehim, Mircea Eliade, E.E. Evans-Pritchard, Katherine Ewing, Sigmund Freud, Clifford Geertz, Aisha Khan, Sarah Kofman, Claude Levi-Strauss, Emmanuel Levinas, Saba Mahmood, Karl Marx, Amira Mittermaier, Sherry Ortner, Stefania Pandolfo, Ann Pellegrini, Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, Gershom Scholem, Joan Scott, Ninian Smart, Edward Tylor, Max Weber, and Angela Zito. Students will be evaluated based on attendance, in-class participation, reading responses, and two short analytical essays.
Level: Intro/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: None. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS2060Philosophies of Liberation
HS2061Indigenous AmericaThis course will provide an introduction to the history of indigenous peoples in the Americas. Using a seminar style the class will combine some overview lectures, student-led discussion of books, and project-based learning to provide an initial introduction to the diverse histories of native peoples from Canada to the Andes. The course will focus on both pre-contact societies as well as the processes of interaction between Europeans and indigenous peoples in the Americas. Using a selection of case studies the course will highlight building an understanding of indigenous worldviews as well as socio-political organization and the ways both were transformed by colonialism. A range of books will introduce students to the ethnohistorical literature on native communities from Mesoamerica, North America, and the Andes. A simultaneous component of the course will be student’s research projects on a topic of their choosing that explores a dimension of native people’s histories. Students will be evaluated on attendance, course participation, short analytical essays, and their final project.
Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none, however, student without any background in history should expect to invest extra time with the readings and writing assignments. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS, HY
This course focuses on real and symbolic journeys in literature, considering travel as both a physical and psychological phenomenon and the journal as a primary human archetype. Our readings begin with Joseph Campbell's Hero with a Thousand Faces then pass to a number of fictional journeys, including Coleridge's Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Dante's Inferno, Melville's Moby Dick, Charles Johnson's The Middle Passage, Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse, Kerouac's On the Road, and William T. Vollmann's The Butterfly Stories. Two papers, a midterm and term paper, are required; all students also prepare a voluntary oral report. Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 20 *HS*
HS3011Bread, Love, and DreamsThis course is an introduction to the unconscious. It begins with the problem of knowing something which by definition is unknown. It then proceeds to examine two classic approaches to the unconscious: dreams and love. Students are expected to keep dream notebooks and to recognize their own unconscious life in the light of readings. Readings start with the unconscious in its classical formulation according to Freud and Jung. We read The Interpretation of Dreams and Two Essays in Analytical Psychology. We consider these themes in fiction using Henry James' The Beast in the Jungle. We then move to more contemporary writers, particularly James Hillman's The Dream and the Underworld, Michel Foucault's History of Sexuality, and finally consider some of the negative implications of the material in Elaine Scarry's The Body in Pain. The writing part of this course is done in pairs, with groups of two students cross-examining each other's dream notebooks and self-analysis.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisite: A course in literature or psychology. Offered every other year. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: $20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3012Poetry and the American EnvironmentSince Anne Bradstreet in the seventeenth century, American poets have responded to the natural environment and its human transformation. Poets have learned to see by their exposure to nature, then in turn have used their techniques of vision, music and metaphor to teach us how to see who and where we are. This class considers poets of the Romantic and Transcendental movements, spends some time with Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson, then focuses on the twentieth century, especially T.S. Eliot, Wallace Stevens, Robert Frost, Robinson Jeffers, and Elizabeth Bishop. We end with some contemporaries: Robert Hass, Charles Simic, Gary Snyder, and Mary Oliver. Students may write either an analytical paper or a collection of their own poetry. Class meetings are supplemented by additional workshop sessions for student poets.
Level: Intermediate. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3013The Aesthetics of ViolenceThis course examines the origin and aesthetics of violence in western culture. We begin with the question: what are the long-term human effects of a civilization dominated by the image of a murdered god? We develop the focus on representations of violence in classical and contemporary literature and film. For theory we read Aristotle's Poetics, Nietzsche's Birth of Tragedy, Ren, Girard's Violence and the Sacred. We study classical tragedy (Oedipus Rex, The Bacchae, Medea) along with Shakespeare's Macbeth, Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment and Brett Easton Ellis' American Psycho. Discussions are supplemented by a film series clarifying the debate over contemporary film violence by placing it in mythic context. Natural Born Killers, Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Ride the High Country, and Clockwork Orange are among works studied. Student reports bring us up-to-date on current issues and cases of domestic and serial violence, as well as the politics of censorship, the representation of violence in visual art, the issue of pornography and the myth of the victim hero. To clarify the issue of real versus represented violence we make a class field trip to the Bangor Auditorium for a professional wrestling match.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 24. Lab Fee: $15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3014World Ethnography in FilmThis course is intended to give a view of how different peoples of the world live and what their homes, dress, customs, and work are like, the kinds of technologies employed in various environments and the population levels they support. The text is Ethnographic Film by Heider. The class views a sampling of anthropological films made over the last fifty years. Students are expected to view twenty films and write critiques of fifteen. Evaluation is based on participation and the fifteen reviews.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisite: Contemporary Culture and the Self or equivalent. Offered every year. Class limit: 20. Lab fee $20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3015African American LiteratureThis survey of African American literature from its origins in the slave narrative to the present vivid prose of some of America's best writers considers the impact of slavery and race consciousness on literary form and power. Readings include letters, essays, poems, short stories, and novels of some of the following authors: Phillis Wheatley, Frederick Douglass, Harriet Jacobs, Pauline Hopkins, Langston Hughes, Richard Wright, Zora Neale Hurston, Gwendolyn Brooks, Ralph Ellison, Toni Morrison.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisite: A previous literature course or signature of the instructor. Class limit: 15. Offered every other year. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3016Global Environmental Politics: Theory and PracticeThis course will cover the politics and policy of regional and global environmental issues, including many of the major environmental treaties that have been negotiated to date (Montreal Protocol, Framework Convention on Climate Change, Convention on Biological Diversity). Students will gain both practical and theoretical understandings of how treaties are negotiated and implemented, through case studies of the climate change convention and the Cartagena protocol on biosafety. We will draw on both mainstream and critical theories of international relations when analyzing these negotiations. Students will become familiar with the range of political stances on different treaties of various nations and blocs, and the political, economic, cultural, and scientific reasons for diverging and converging views. We will pay special attention to the growing role played by non-governmental organizations in global environmental politics. We will conclude the course with discussions of some current controversial areas in international environmental politics.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 15. Lab Fee $10.00 Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3017The Contemporary Culture of Maine Organic FarmersHow does organic farming fit into American culture? Who are the people who do it? How did they learn what they need to know? Are they different in any significant way from other Americans? If so, on what is that difference based? What role does culture play in the ecosystems of organic farms? In this course we explore the relationship between culture and ecosystem through field experience. Though the culture of the USA has many shared elements, it also contains distinctive elements, some of which are based on the subsistence activities of sub-cultural groups. We hypothesize that particular subsistence activities and the other ecosystem elements in which those activities take place may make specific demands on the sub-culture in the realm of values, ideology, social organization, kinship and marriage, language, technology, and so on. While most Americans don*t earn their livings from natural resources, there is a growing concern with health of natural systems. And those who do make their livings from natural resouces may possess knowledge and perspectives about nature which are neither understood nor appreciated by the general populace. The assumption is made that many students have not been exposed to the sub-culture of organic farmers, and so these must be contacted in person, a relationship established, questions asked, answers recorded. This entails preparation for field-work - understanding of the basic concepts of culture, enculturation, ethnocentrism, cultural relativism, and some elements of interviewing. Further, many of the ideas, both philosophical and practical, which may seem commonplace to many organic growers will be new to us, and so will be explored in the reading and class discussions. Field trips are organized to meet people with whom the instructor has already established a rapport. Each interview entails a full class session of preparation which is followed on alternate class days by a field trip. Participants will use background reading and discussion to focus their own questions. (Students need to arrange their schedules to allow a half-day minimum for the field trips which will take place in the afternoons). We will attempt to get a complex and holistic view of what it is like to farm organically and to build a lifestyle with it as the basis. Students will be evaluated on class participation and on a journal which will include transcriptions and interpretations of notes from the field trips and readings.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 12. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3020Contemporary Social Movement StrategiesWhen groups organize others to promote social change, what alternative strategies do they employ and how effective are they in varying circumstances? Can any general principles or methods for social change be gleaned from the successes and difficulties encountered in various social movements around the world? We will use Bill Moyer's DOING DEMOCRACY and a series of other theoretical readings to look at general models and strategies. And we will use a series of case studies including, for instance, the Zapatistas, Moveon.org, the liberation of Eastern Europe, the U. S. Civil Rights Movement, the anti-Globalizaton movement, the Breast Cancer Social Movement and the Gay and Lesbian movement. Students will write a series of short analyses of cases considered in class and do extended case studies on their own. Evaluation will be based on the qulaity of class participation, research and writing.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 15. Lab fee $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HY HS
HS3022Intermediate Spanish IIThis course is for students who use the simple and compound structures of the indicative mood. Objective: The students will express themselves orally and through writing using the appropriate vocabulary and complex sentence structure in the indicative, subjunctive, and imperative moods, adverb clauses and more sophisticated idioms. Evaluation Criteria: two compositions, two auditory tests, two writing test covering grammar, two oral tests, assignments/ homework, class participation.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 10.
HS3026Whitewater/Whitepaper: River Conservation and RecreationLoren Eisely once remarked, "If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water." Eisely's observation is an underlying premise of this course - that there is something very special about moving water. This course is taught in a seminar format in which students will read and discuss ecological, historical, sociological, political and legal aspects of river conservation and watershed protection. Special emphasis is placed on understanding the policy issues surrounding dams, river protection, and watershed planning. In conjunction with readings and class discussions, students will use a term-long study of a local stream to learn about the threats facing rivers in the United States and the legal and policy mechanisms for addressing these threats. In addition, the class will take an extended field trip to western Massachusetts to gain first-hand knowledge of the tremendous impact river manipulation can have on a social and ecological landscape. We will spend time looking at historically industrialized and now nationally protected rivers in the region. Through weekly excursions on Maine rivers, students will also develop skills to enable them to paddle a tandem canoe in intermediate whitewater. Evaluation will be based on problem sets, role-playing exercises, contribution to the class, short essays, and paddling skills. Weekly excursions to area rivers entail special scheduling constraints as we will be in the field all day on Fridays.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisite: Signature of instructor. Class limit: 11. Lab fee: $100.
HS3027Microeconomics for Business and PolicyWhat is the best way to insure that communities can provide dependable, well-paying jobs to their citizens? Why does Coca Cola spend millions of dollars to advertise a product with which most people are already very familiar? What can the game of blackjack tell us about how industries are structured? How can we get coal-burning power utilities to reduce their carbon emissions while they save millions of dollars in the process? How can we provide much better health care to all Americans, at much less cost, while making it easier for small businesses to grow? All of these questions, and many more like them, are answered by microeconomic theory. This intermediate-level course exposes students to basic microeconomic theories, models, and concepts that shed insight on the economic behavior of businesses, individuals, governments and politicians, and international organizations. We will emphasize approaches that have numerous overlapping applications to both business and policy evaluation: markets, pricing, firm structure and decision-making, strategic behavior (using game theory), consumer behavior, externalities (such as greenhouse gas emissions) and the provision of public goods (such as military, education, and environmental conservation). We will pay special attention to the economics of asymmetrical information (adverse selection, moral hazard, and principal-agent situations) that have a wide range of applications, including issues such as the ineffectiveness of the American health care system, the structuring of business finance, and the hiring and paying of employees. This will be a non-calculus course, but will give students exposure to technical economic modeling, with heavy emphasis on graphical modeling of complex social phenomena. We will use a lab period to conduct extensive experiments and games that illustrate or test economic concepts and hypotheses.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisite: Signature of instructor or 1 course in economics or business. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $30. Meets the following degree requirements: HS, QR
HS3028The MysticsMysticism is an important current in almost all religions and marks an attempt on the part of the mystic to experience a union with the deepest nature of reality. This course offers an examination of the nature and types of mystical experience with a particular emphasis on the paradoxical language that many mystics use. Language is thought to be inadequate to describe the nature of the real and yet language is the only tool to communicate with others. Contradictory and paradoxical expressions and descriptions are used in an attempt to point beyond language directly at reality. While drawing primarily on Western religions of the Greek, Christian, Islamic and Jewish traditions, questions are raised concerning the degree to which Eastern traditions, such as Buddhism, can be meaningfully regarded as mystical. Some of the mystics examined in detail include Plotinus, Ibn Arabi, Meister Eckhart, Marguerite Porete, St John and St. Teresa. Students will be evaluated on their participation in discussions and the ability to convey their understanding of mysticism in both mid-term and final take-home exams.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 20.
Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3029Shakespeare: Character, Conflict, and Cinematography
HS3031Our Public Lands: Past, Present, and FutureBy definition "public lands" belong to all of us, yet public lands in this country have a history of use (and abuse) by special interests and a shocking absence of any coherent management strategy for long-term sustainability. This course is taught in seminar format in which students read and discuss several environmental policy and history texts that concern the history and future of our federal lands. We also use primary historic documents and texts to understand the origins of public ownership and management. We examine the legal, philosophical, ecological, and political problems that have faced our National Parks, wildlife refuges, national forests, and other public lands. An effort is made to sort out the tangle of laws and conflicting policies that govern these public resources. Special attention is given to the historic roots of current policy debates. Evaluation is based upon response papers, a class presentation, participation in class discussions, and a group project looking closely at the historical context and policy implications of a management issue facing a nearby public land unit.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisite: Introductory history or policy class recommended. Class limit: 20. Lab fee $15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS3032The Cold War: Early YearsThis course provides a broad historical overview of the early years of the “Cold War” period that shaped global politics generally and American foreign policy specifically. Beginning in the 1940’s and leading up to Richard Nixon's election in 1968 we will examine the diplomatic relationship between the United States and the Soviet Union and how this relationship has impacted state actors, economic policies, cultural production, and conceptions of identity. While there will be a heavy focus on traditional state-level diplomatic history, students will also explore a broad array of methodological approaches. Class sessions will include a mix of traditional lecture formats, class discussion, and outside presentations. An evening lab is scheduled in order to screen a variety of cultural artifacts from the various periods we will cover. The primary goal is to give students an intensive 10-week crash course into key events, concepts, figures, etc.. that defined the early decades of Cold War diplomacy. At the same time there is also time allocated for students to explore their own independent research interests. Given the far-reaching force of Cold War politics into everyday life, individuals with widely varying academic interests will find the course informative and productive. Evaluation will be based on a mix of class participation, individual research assignments, and exams. All students, regardless of their backgrounds, previous coursework, or interests are welcome.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: $20. Meets the following degree requirements: HY HS
HS3033Satanic VersesThis course is a study of the figure of Satan in classic and contemporary literature and visual art including painting and film. We will view the Satanic image in the light of Jung's shadow archetype, an unconscious compensatory figure in the evolution of morality. It will also be related to ideas of nature and civilization, to major religious structures and to the political techniques of demonization and projection. A centerpiece of the course will be a close reading of Salman Rushdie's "Satanic Verses" and its relation to contemporary Islam. Other readings will be drawn from a list including the books of Genesis and Job from the Old Testament, Jung's "Answer to Job", Sura 46 of the Koran, selections from Dante's "Inferno" and Milton's "Paradise Lost", Goethe's "Faust", William Blake's "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell", Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter," the Grand Inquisitor chapter from Dostoevsky's "Brothers Karamazov", Nietzsche's "The Antichrist", Elaine Pagel's "The Origin of Satan", and the Rolling Stones' "Sympathy for the Devil". We will also take time to study visual imagery from Bosch, Goya, and the Dore illustrations to Dante. Halfway steering clear of Hollywood, films may include "The Passion of the Christ", Pasolini's "Gospel According to St. Matthew", "Rosemary's Baby", Godard's "Sympathy for the Devil" and Herzog's "Nosferatu the Vampyr." Students will learn to analyze and understand complex literary works in historical and cultural context. Evaluations to be based on two papers (8 & 12 pages) plus one class presentation. The student presentations will be expected to expand the course into areas of popular culture, music, iconography and social behavior.
Level: Intermediate; Class limit: 18; Lab fee $10
HS3034Conspiracy Theory and Political DiscourseThe fear of the "hidden" enemy that lurks behind the shadows is a narrative theme that appears periodically in the political discourse of all democratic societies. Yet, this narrative of fear (often labeled as conspiracy theory) is regularly criticized as somehow being inherently antidemocratic, irrational, or dangerous. At the same time, this form of argument can also be "mainstreamed" and defended as a legitimate response to the events of the moment. How do we make sense of this tension? If conspiracy theory as a mode of explanation is inherently "irrational," what does this mean for its enduring presence in our political discourse? Is the only difference between a reasonable claim rooted in fear and the conspiracy theories of "kooks" and "nutjobs" simply a matter of which one is "correct?" This class will address the role fear and anxiety plays in our social and political lives. We will explore a variety of topics related directly to how threats, conspiracies, agents of "evil," and "otherness" become manifest in public discourse. Specific topics include: the possible tension between "rational" deliberative decision making and the cultivating of anxiety in public governance; why we dismiss some claims as mere conspiracy theory and yet have no problem accepting other similarly formed arguments; what role the "outsider" plays in cementing cohesion within an "in" group; and the disturbing possibility that fear is actually a healthy component of democratic debate. The class will look at both contemporary and historical examples from the United States and around the world. There are three primary goals of the class: first, to expose students to the analysis of primary texts rooted in public fear and anxiety; second, to provoke discussion about the role of conspiracy and threats in democracies; and third, to provide students with a survey of secondary work that seeks to situate and make sense of these topics. Readings will be a combination of primary artifacts for interpretation (such a speeches, manifestos, pamphlets, and movies) as well as secondary analytical readings. In addition to the regular class meeting time, students will be expected to attend a weekly evening lab session devoted to the screening of visual works and/or presentations by speakers. Evaluation will be based on readings driven discussion as well as individual student writing assignments. Students will produce several short length essay assignments during the term as well as a longer research paper at the end of the term. This class is open to students of all interests regardless of their experience with politics, government, or social theory.
Level: Intermediate; Class limit: 12; Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3036Oceans & Fishes: Readings in Environmental HistoryThis course will explore the rapidly expanding field of marine environmental history and historical studies that focus on fish and fisheries. Recent methodological and conceptual work as well as growing interest in the history of these topics driven by conservation and policy issues has made this an important and innovative field. Using the work of a variety of scholars from different fields the class will explore how historical accounts can be constructed with an emphasis on the types of available sources, the use of evidence, and how each author builds their argument. We will explicitly compare the methods, use of evidence and other aspects of different disciplinary approaches to the topic to highlight the strengths and limitations of each approach. This dimension of the class is particularly interesting because of the dynamic and interdisciplinary nature of scholarship right now that brings a wide range of research into dialogue. Students will learn about the history of oceans and fishes by looking at how historians and other scholars frame their works and make their arguments. Students will be evaluated on their preparation for discussion, mastery of the material, short written assignments, and a final project made up of a presentation and essay. This course is appropriate for students with interest in history, community-based research, marine studies, and environmental policy. Students who are just curious and interested in lots of things are also most welcome.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 15 Lab Fee $75.00 Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS3037Doing Human Ecology in Cross-cultural Contexts: FranceThis course is part of a program in French Language and Culture in Vichy, France. It will provide credit for the winter orientation process preparatory for the program, learning from homestay in Vichy, the other cultural experiences that are a part of the program and for the final two week project. This final project will be in the local community working with a bakery, a farm, an NGO, a government agency, a business or some other organization that fits with their interests and provides them with an opportunity for practical learning of French language and culture in an immersion context. The course is designed to employ group exercises and individual reflections on experiences to develop the student’s insight into French culture specifically and, just as importantly, into the process of learning a second language and entering into cross-cultural exchange and collaboration. Skills and insights from anthropology, history and conflict resolution will be cultivated. Evaluation will be based on the student’s ability to demonstrate skills and insights into cross-cultural collaboration and learning through short papers based on journal writing, the final project report, and the successful completion of homestay, community collaboration and other immersion activities. Prerequisite: at least one course in French language. Requirements: Co-enrollment in HS775 "Immersion Program in French Language and Culture" and permission of instructor.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 12. Program fee: TBD
HS3038The Cold War: The Later YearsThis course provides a broad historical overview of the early years of the “Cold War” period that shaped global politics generally and American foreign policy specifically. Beginning with the election of Richard Nixon's in 1968 and following up to today, we will focus on the diplomatic relationship between the United States and the Soviet Union/Russia and how this relationship has impacted state actors, economic policies, cultural production, and conceptions of identity. While there will be a heavy focus on traditional state-level diplomatic history, students will also explore a broad array of methodological approaches. Class sessions will include a mix of traditional lecture formats, class discussion, and outside presentations. An evening lab is scheduled in order to screen a variety of cultural artifacts from the various periods we will cover. The primary goal is to give students an intensive 10-week crash course into key events, concepts, figures, etc.. that defined the later decades of Cold War diplomacy. At the same time there is also time allocated for students to explore their own independent research interests. Given the far-reaching force of Cold War politics into everyday life, individuals with widely varying academic interests will find the course informative and productive. Evaluation will be based on a mix of class participation, individual research assignments, and exams.While this class is designed to compliment the topics covered in The Cold War: Early Years, students are not required to have had this earlier class. Both courses are designed as "stand alone." All students, regardless of their backgrounds, previous coursework, or interests are welcome.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS3040History of Agriculture: ApplesThis course will explore the history of agriculture from the vantage point of Downeast Maine with a focus on apples. The premise of the course is that by exploring this fascinating crop in detail from the local vantage point of Downeast Maine students will be able to grasp the many historical processes at work from the introduction of the fruit in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries to the age of agricultural improvement in the eighteenth on to the rise and fall of commercial orcharding as a major component of Maine’s farm economy in the early twentieth century. Using sources ranging from secondary sources, historical Atlases, Aerial Surveys, and diaries, we will explore how the culture of apple agriculture in Maine develops over time as part of an interconnected Atlantic World where crops flow back and forth between Britain and the colonies/U.S. over hundreds of years. Course activities will include fruit exploration fieldtrips to track down and identify antique varieties as well as visits to the local farms where a new generation of apple culture is taking shape. The course will also engage students with the process of cider-making, both sweet and hard, as well as exercises in the preparation, storage, and processing of apples. Students will be evaluated on their participation in discussion, how they collaborate with others in class projects, and a final individual or collaborative project. This course is designed for students interested in history, farming and food systems, community-based research, and policy/planning issues. It is also very appropriate for students who like apples and just want to know (a lot) more.
Level: Intermediate. Limit: 18. Lab Fee: $125.00. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS3041Intermediate Atelier in French Language and Conversation
HS3042Advanced Atelier in French Language and Conversation
HS3043Democracy: Models, Theories, QuestionsDemocracy is a word you hear constantly in contemporary political discourse. Most people seem to think it's a good thing, but they might not always agree on what the "it" is. Perhaps we should take a moment to unpack the idea of democratic governance in our world. What do we mean when we call something a democracy? Why do we naturally assume that democracy is a good thing? Is it? Should we promote it? How is democratic governance conceptualized across various societies and publics, today and in the past? How are these various models of democracy encoded with certain assumptions about the relationship of the individual subject to the world around them? What does the discourse of the democratic mean in contemporary society? This seminar will cover all of these questions and more. We start with some basic definitional questions and from there springboard into a host of challenging topics pertaining to how governance is conceptualized. We will cover theoretical conceptions of governance and power, empirical observations of the functioning of democratic forms, and grounded questions of practice when applied to contemporary problems. Along the way we will draw on concrete examples from the international, national, local, and (not surprisingly) the COA level. Evaluation will be based on engagement with class discussion, short form response papers, literature reviews, and various student led presentations. Students with a wide variety of interests in governance, politics, policy, economy, theory, and other forms of social analysis are encouraged to enroll.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3044Rights: Who or What Should Have Them and WhyHow can and should talk about rights be used to influence and inform the ways we treat people, nature and corporations? Central questions of justice are often framed in terms of rights of access to things like food and free speech or to protection from things like torture and extinction. They are also framed in terms of arguments about who or what has these various rights – e. g. women, gays, children, corporations, trees, Nature, or even artificial intelligences. This course will use a seminar format to explore and critique key contemporary philosophical approaches to articulating and justifying answers to these sorts of questions. The goals of the course are to develop students’ understanding of these philosophical approaches and to engage these approaches and their applications through critical philosophical analysis. Texts will include John Rawls JUSTICE AS FAIRNESS, Amartya Sen’s THE IDEA OF JUSTICE , and Christopher Stone’s SHOULD TREES HAVE STANDING, and readings from Marjorie Kelley’s THE DIVINE RIGHT OF CAPITAL, Ann Elizabeth Mayer’s ISLAM AND HUMAN RIGHTS, and works by Giorgio Agamben, Robert Nozick, Alberto Acosta and others. Students will take turns leading seminar discussions of the texts. Each will also do a term project developing a critical analysis of a philosophical point of view or a specific topic in rights theory. Evaluation will be based on seminar participation, short papers and the final project demonstrating philosophical understanding and critical skills.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: None, but previous work in philosophy and/or applied topics on rights recommended. Class limit: 12 Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3045The Ethnography of Work in ItalyThis course will include in depth preparation for conducting experiential, ethnographically informed explorations of cultures of work in the Veneto. Students will be instructed in key ethnographic methods within the context of fieldwork in Northern Italy: interviewing, participant observation, self-reflection and reflexivity, and methods of journaling and writing fieldnotes. These skills will be communicated via seminars and lectures in the field, as students prepare for individual immersion experiences in particular work contexts. During their immersion field experience, the instructors will meet with students at particular intervals to process the challenges and points of interest that have emerged, thus making the learning process an ongoing experience. Throughout, we will ask what an ethnographically informed perspective offers for the understanding of cross-cultural encounters, travel, and the notion of immersion. Students will be evaluated on class participation, the ongoing production of fieldnotes and journal material, and a final reflection on their fieldwork experiences.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: Italian Language, History, and Culture and permission of the Instructors. Requires the simultaneous enrollment in A Human Ecology of the Veneto and The Poetics and Politics of Cross-Cultural Encounters. Class Limit: 12. Lab fee: $1580. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3047The Poetics and Politics of Cross-Cultural EncountersThis course will consist of an intensive two-week seminar through which students will collaboratively compile and analyze the material gleaned from their encounters in the Veneto. We will engage deeply with the question of how to present these experiences to the very communities that made them possible. Students will consider aspects of form, representation, ethics, politics, and responsibility, as they prepare a series of exhibitions, performances, and presentations to take place in Italy before their departure. A collaborative presentation to the COA community will also be prepared. We will address, in active conversation and hands on work as a group, themes such as: the relationship between individual and community, the encounter between self and other, comparison, and the very meaning of what a “cross-cultural” encounter entails. Students will be evaluated on class participation and their production of a final project in the context of group work.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: Italian Language, History, and Culture and permission of the Instructors. Requires the simultaneous enrollment in A Human Ecology of the Veneto and The Ethnography of Work in Italy. Class Limit: 12. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3051Belonging, Mobility and DisplacementWhat does it mean to belong, or not to belong? What does it mean to be mobile? What is a home, a homeland, home country, or nation? How do experiences of migration, exile, and displacement shift one's understanding of home? New strategies of warfare, statecraft, and political violence, and recent environmental and social disasters, are giving rise to forms of belonging, mobility, and displacement that do not fit within traditional categories. War and political violence destabilize national borders while reinforcing structures of power that bolster or mimic nation-state forms. Environmental disaster and poverty cause displacements that cannot be classified in terms of either "economic" or "forced" migration, but produce composite categories which, as of yet, have no legal foothold, such as "economic" or "environmental" refugees. While popular culture heralds the rise of multiculturalism in a "globalized" world, there are also alarming signals (surveillance, strategies of "profiling," increasing militarization of borders, and race-related violence) that suggest that blood, territory, and race continue as powerful delineators of inclusion and exclusion. This course asks how belonging, mobility, and displacement take shape amid political violence; global migrations of people, capital, and ideas; social inequalities; new forms of political organization and governance (international, grass-roots, supranational); and the continued dominance of nation-states. The course will incorporate theoretical, literary, and ethnographic sources. Students should be willing to challenge themselves in a reading intensive course with a seminar format. Evaluation will be based on the quality of participation in class discussions and on written assignments.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: Writing requirement must be fulfilled, as well as a reading intensive class in History, Art, or Human Studies. If you feel you can take the class but the above criteria are not fulfilled, speak to the instructor. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3053VoyagesFrom prehistoric times the journey into the unknown has been both a reality and a metaphor of human experience. This course will follow the archetype of the voyage through major literary narratives and road movies. Its written and class assignments will draw from students' own experience as travelers. Using Joseph Campbell's Hero with a Thousand Faces as a theoretical framework, we'll move on to Homer's Odyssey (selections), Melville's Moby Dick, Conrad's Heart of Darkness, Woolf's To the Lighthouse, Peter Mattheissen's Far Tortuga and the new "scroll" version of Jack Kerouac's On the Road. We'll watch Apocalypse Now, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Stranger than Paradise, Powwow Highway, Wild at Heart, The African Queen. Assignments will include in-class reports on students' own journeys and a nonfiction creative writing section on travel narrative.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 16 Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3054Existentialism and Post-Modernism from Nietzsche to IrigaryThis is a study of key texts in the tradition of Existentialism and Post-modernism. As a point of entry into the full range of themes, questions and ideas in that tradition, it focuses on the ways in which authors frame and interpret the experiences of freedom and of love. Are these the most profound and important aspects of human being-in-the-world or illusions used to manipulate the masses? How is individual freedom related to communal liberation? What role does love play in struggles for individual redemption or national liberation? How are experiences of freedom and love gendered? How are they related to instinctual drives for power or sex? What is the nature of the self and how is it realized or transformed by acts of freedom or love, or by events and institutional trends in history? Texts may include: Nietzsche’s GENEALOGY OF MORALS, Kierkegaard’s FEAR AND TREMBLING, selected readings from Michel Foucault, Luce Irigary’s THE WAY OF LOVE, Paulo Freire’s THE PEDAGOGY OF THE OPPRESSED, Sartre’s “Existentialism is a Humanism”, and selections from Simone de Beauvoir’s THE SECOND SEX and Martin Buber’s I AND THOU. Two films will also be used as texts. Students with relevant skills will be encouraged to work with texts in the original languages. Evaluation will be based on the level of understanding of - and engagement with - texts studied and the development of skills in textual analysis and writing as demonstrated in class participation, a series of short papers, and a final project.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3055The Mayas of Yesterday and TodayThis is a course in the history and culture of the Yucatec Maya offered as part of the College's Yucatan Program in Mexico. It will cover key features of the Pre-Hispanic, Colonial and Modern eras. Readings will include classic texts by and about them as well as contemporary studies in archaeology and anthropology. Themes will include social structure, religion, politics, agricultural practices, language and family life. Homework will include various short writing assignments and oral project reports. Field trips in and around Merida will be included both to visit archaeological sites of special interest and also to visit contemporary communities of Maya. Each student will do a major final project which will include research in texts and fieldwork which culminate in an extended study on site in a Maya village. This course will be taught entirely in Spanish.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisite: signature of Yucatan program director and co-enrollment in HS6010 Spanish Language and HS2021 Immersion Practica. Lab fee: TBA. Class limit: 12
HS3057Taking the Waters: The Politics and Culture of Water in FranceFrance is renowned for its waters. Whether it is the spa cities like Vichy where people flocked to "take the waters," the marketing of Perrier that started the global bottled water craze, the pilgrimages to the sacred waters of Lourdes, the home of global water giants like Suez Lyonnaise des Eaux, or the rivers that define its various regions, water provides a lens through which to understand France. This course will look at the multiple dimensions of water in France and Europe and ultimately at the question of the meaning of water. This class will be taught in conjunction with Doreen Stabinsky's class and the French language course at CAVILAM (Immersion Program in French Language and Culture). The first five weeks of the course will be based in Vichy. Vichy owes its existence to its mineral springs that have drawn people since Roman times to "faire une cure thermal." Looking at both the mythology and the current practice of thermal medicine, we will examine the use of water for healing and renewal. In addition, we will investigate the conflict between efforts to commodify water globally and citizen efforts to build a "water democracy" around the idea of water as a human right. The final three weeks of the course will explore related issues through excursions in France and to Brussels to understand the history of humans’ relationship with water. From ancient Roman water structures, to the engineering marvel of Paris sewers, contested dam sites, and multinational water conglomerates, the class will experience the changes in water paradigms over time. The class will also seek to assess the success of Europe's continent-wide attempt at holistic water management. The EU Water Framework Directive provides an excellent opportunity to investigate the new federalism of Europe, ambitious efforts to improve water quality, and the strengths and weaknesses of Integrated Water Resource Management. Class readings and discussions will take place in English, though some conversations with outside experts may be in French. Students will be evaluated on response papers, projects, problem sets, and class participation.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: At least one policy course, French language course and permission of instructor. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS3059Native American LiteratureThis course is a challenging introduction to several centuries of Native American literature, the relevance of historical and cultural facts to its literary forms, and the challenges of bridging oral and written traditions. Authors include such writers as Silko, Erdrich, Harjo, Vizenor, and McNickle as well as earlier speeches and short stories. We also consider non-native readings and appropriation of Native American styles, material and world views.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS320The Human Ecology of Wilderness
Wilderness has been the clarion call for generations of environmentalists. Henry David Thoreau once said, "In wildness is the preservation of the world." That single sentence and the controversy surrounding that idea provides the central focus of our explorations over the term. This course examines the question of wilderness from multiple perspectives in the hopes of providing an understanding of the concept and real spaces that constitute wilderness. Starting with a week-long canoe trip down Maine's Allagash Wilderness Waterway, we look at historical and contemporary accounts of the value of wilderness, biological, and cultural arguments for wilderness, and the legal and policy difficulties of "protecting" wilderness. Considerable time is spent evaluating current criticisms of the wilderness idea and practice. Students are involved in a term-long project involving potential wilderness protection in Maine. This involves some weekend travel and work in the Maine Woods. Classwork emphasizes hands-on projects as well as theoretical discussions. Level: Intermediate. Prerequisite: Introduction to the Legal Process, Signature of instructor. Class limit: 14. Lab fee: $200. *HS*
HS322Culture of Maine Woodworkers
This course presents an integrated view of the environment, both cultural and natural, in which Maine men and women working in the timber industry operate and adapt. Topics covered include: the physical environment as a limiting factor, the resources (their nature and abundance), and the cultural mechanisms which mediate the workers' access to and use of the resources (technology, economy, social organization, belief systems). The course makes use of numerous field trips and visitors. Each student is asked to keep detailed notes in a journal of all classes, field trips, and interviews. There is also a mid-term exam. (Note: this course parallels Cultural Ecology of Maine Fishing in method and theoretical outline, but is not redundant.) The objective is to know what people in the industry think, why they think it, and where the industry is going. Level: Intermediate. Offered every other year. Lab fee: $20. *HS*
HS4010Seminar in Human EcologyThis seminar traces the historical development of human ecology. We begin by reviewing the seminal works in human ecology, the contributions from biology, and the development of human ecology as a multidisciplinary concept. Along these lines we compare the various brands of human ecology that have developed through sociology (the Chicago school), anthropology and cultural ecology, ecological psychology, and economics, as well as human ecological themes in the humanities, architecture, design, and planning. This background is then used to compare the COA brand of Human Ecology with other programs in this country and elsewhere around the world. Our final purpose is to look at new ideas coming from philosophy, the humanities, biological ecology, and other areas for future possibilities for human ecology. Evaluations are based on presentations and papers. Advanced. Open only to third and fourth level students. Offered every other year. Class size limited to 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4011Theories of Human NatureBy using the theme of the understanding of human nature this course explores the central aspects of several major philosophical systems. A theory of human nature involves a vision of the individual self, its relation to the social community, and its relation to the natural world. This tripartite theme is traced through a range of philosophies ancient and modern, eastern and western, religious and scientific in order to remind ourselves of the range of human possibilities and to clarify the presumptions of our present image of ourselves. The results of this investigation are used to approach the problem of formulating a philosophy of human ecology. Particular readings used change each time the course is given.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Class limit: 20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4012Contemporary Women's NovelsThis course selects from among the most interesting, diverse and well-written of contemporary women's fiction to focus on questions of women's writing (and how/whether it can be treated as a literary and formal category), gender identity and women's issues, and the tension between sameness and difference among women's experiences, and narrations of women's experience, around the world. The course begins by examining two relatively unknown yet rather extraordinary novels from earlier in the twentieth century: Alexandra Kollantai's Love of Worker Bees (1927) and Sawako Ariyoshi's The Doctor's Wife (1967). After these, we read from truly contemporary authors and quite varied authors published within the last twenty years, like Buchi Emecheta, Gloria Naylor, Ursula Hegi, Nawal El Saadawi, Sue Grafton, Graciela Limon, Tsitsi Dargarembga, Barara Yoshimoto, Dorothy Allison, Rose Tremain, Julia Alvarez, Leslie Feinberg, April Sinclair, and Achy Obejas. Students each choose an additional author to study and read a novel outside of class. An extensive list of authors is included in the syllabus. Evaluation be based on class participation, either two short papers or one long paper on works discussed in class, a presentation to the class of the outside novel, and a final evaluation essay.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisite: a previous literature course and signature of the instructor. Offered every other year. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4014Contemporary Psychology: Body, Mind and Soul
HS4016Ecology and ExperienceEcology is sometimes considered a "subversive" subject: the more humans learn about the living world, the more we are challenged to re-examine many of our fundamental beliefs. According to this perspective, ecology provides a complex mirror for humans. In its reflection we glimpse a different understanding of our place in the world. Age-old concerns return to consciousness: questions about insight and responsibility, the relation of spirit and matter, issues of meaning, purpose, and identity. In short, the science of ecology has given birth to an entirely new approach to psychology. The purpose of this course is to examine a cross-section of new ideas along this interface. Some ideas will draw on clues from deep in our evolutionary past. Other questions will explore what we know from ecology about living more fully in the present - or ways that ecology can enrich our imagination of the future. Readings for this class will be drawn from primary sources in a variety of fields with a pivotal focus on the relationships of mind and nature. The course will be taught in an interactive, seminar style with participants sharing summaries of the readings - individually and in teams. Two short papers and one end-of-term longer paper are required. Preference will be given to students with background or strong interests in psychology and/or ecology.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $25. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4018Histories of Power: States & Subalterns in Latin AmericaThis colloquium-style course will provide an intensive examination of the modern political history of Latin America with a particular emphasis on the specific mechanisms of power used by state actors, local communities, and individuals. The course seeks to provide students with appropriate theoretical tools as well as concrete historical cases from which to examine power dynamics in contemporary Mexico, Central America, and the Andes. The course also highlights a concrete set of cases through which students can examine the history of political upheaval, revolution, and contestation that has defined the region since independence. The chronological scope of the class will be from the early nineteenth century up to the late twentieth century. Students will be asked to take theoretical works about state formation, nationalism and power and examine how such questions could be turned into research projects. Students will write a series of analytical essays on the course readings to problematize each author's treatment of power and the state. A final project on one author's theoretical and empirical contribution to the field will serve as a capstone. The course will focus on discussion of the texts, and students will be evaluated on their discussion skills, reading notes, and written work. This course is intended for students with prior coursework on Latin American history (e.g. From Native Empires to Nation States, Articulated Identities, and Seminar in Guatemalan History and Culture), and courses in social theory would also be helpful.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4020Environmentality: Power, Knowledge, and EcologyBringing critical theory directly to the gates of human ecology, this class will approach the central issue of how discourses of government, biopower, and geopower have intertwined and infused themselves within the representations of "environments" in popular debate. With a specific nod to Foucault, Marx, Baudrillard, Luke, and other critical social theorists, we will tackle the various complexities that arise when "ecology" become a site for political and economic expertization.
Topics to be covered include the formation of knowledge/power/discourse, systems of environmentality, the rise of hyperecology, the valorization of ecodisciplinarians, and, as Timothy Luke puts it: "how discourses of nature, ecology or the environment, as disciplinary articulations of ecoknowledge, can be mobilized by professional-technical experts in contemporary polyarchies to generate geopower over nature for the megatechnical governance of modern economies and societies." The class will also address the question of "moving forward", and how these critiques can open productive spaces for new ways of representing modernity and ecology. The class will be highly interactive; discussion will be the primary mode instruction, and students will have considerable influence on the exact topics covered. Final evaluation will based on a combination of class participation, a series of analytical response papers, and two long form essays. While the class is open to all students, those with some background in critical theory, philosophy, or economic theory are encouraged to attend.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Class limit: 10. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4021Collaborative LeadershipLeadership skills that help people come together to solve problems and take advantage of opportunities are essential in a complex world. This course will provide a context for collaborative (or facilitative) leadership, drawing examples from community settings, non-profit organizations and for-profit businesses. Collaborative leadership leads to productive and supportive relationships, jointly developed goals and structure and shared responsibility for achievement. We will study useful strategies and techniques for involving stakeholders, building consensus, laying out a problem-solving process, facilitation of that process and drawing in the full experience, knowledge and wisdom of participants. Students will write a final paper (or participate in a group project) to integrate results from interviews and opportunities to shadow local leaders, class discussions with guests and the instructor, and material from assigned readings. This course is designed to include both COA students and community members.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Lab fee: $20.
HS4023Economic Development: Theory and Case StudiesEconomic growth in the developing world has lifted millions out of poverty at the same time that misguided attempts at widespread application of generic economic development theories has impoverished millions. As a result of this tragedy, new approaches and methodologies to economic development are emerging, and represent some of the most important, dynamic, and controversial theories in all of economics. This course examines these new perspectives on economic development. We will briefly contextualize the new by reviewing â€œoldâ€ economic development, then move on to theories that emphasize very place-based, country-specific approaches to how economies develop; this will involve examining the specific roles of capital accumulation, capital flows (including foreign exchange, portfolio capital, foreign direct investment, and microfinance), human capital, governance, institutions (especially property rights, legal systems, and corruption), geography and natural resource endowments, industrial policy (e.g. free trade versus dirigiste policies), and spillovers, clustering, and entrepreneurship. The course will involve a rigorous mix of economic modeling, careful application of empirical data (including both historical analysis and cross-sectional studies; students with no exposure to econometrics will receive a brief introduction) and country studies. Evaluation will be based on classroom participation, responses to reading questions, short essays, and a final project consisting of an economic development country study of the studentâ€™s choice that demonstrates application of theoretical concepts to the real world.
Level: Intermediate/ Advanced; Prerequisites: One economics course. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4024Contemporary Continental ThoughtThis course examines pivotal works and ideas of late 20th and early 21st century Continental thinkers. It will take a collaborative, seminar approach to key works including Derrida on "Differance", Cixous and Derrida's "Veils", Deleuze and Guatarri's "Anti-Oedipus", Lyotard's "The Post-Modern Condition", and Zizek's "The Sublime Object of Ideology" as well as shorter essays by other writers such as Foucault, Badiou, Baudrillard, Habermas and Harraway. Students and the instructor will take turns leading analyses of texts, their contexts, and their significance. Students will also be required to do short weekly writings with a major term paper on an author and topic of their choice. Evaluations will be based on the quality of class participation as well as the creativity, insight and clarity of analysis in work leading class sessions, short essays and the final paper. The course presupposes some familiarity with the philosophical tradition to which these writers respond and an ability to engage in careful analysis of very challenging texts. If necessary the class the will be subdivided into sections to insure that students have a small seminar experience that is appropriately challenging for their level of skill and background. Writing-focus option.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced; Permission of instructor required; Class limit: 20; Lab fee $20. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4026Environmental Law and Policy
HS4027Seminar in Guatemalan History and CultureGuatemala is known as a country of dramatic contrasts and this course, which will serve as a pre-requisite for the winter term Guatemala program, seeks to familiarize students with the contextual knowledge they will need to work in this complex society. The course is designed around the question of what you need to know before undertaking research or advocacy in an international setting such as Guatemala. Readings, exercises, and discussion will provide a rigorous interdisciplinary introduction to the historical and ethnographic scholarship on Guatemala with a particular emphasis on training students to recognize and master relevant contextual knowledge and specific fieldwork techniques. Students will learn about the history of Guatemala from the conquest to the present as well as learning to examine the dominant historiographies which have shaped scholars' accounts of that history. Similarly, the class will provide an in-depth insight into Guatemalan society through a series of classic ethnographic works even as we critically examine ethnographic presumptions and practices. All students will learn how to evaluate and use maps, field notes, archival resources, and other sources in their own research. Students will be expected to read scholarly work in Spanish where possible. A final research proposal will be a primary product of the course, and it will be the basis of eight-week independent student work in Guatemala. Participation by multiple faculty in helping students develop the project proposals will be a key pedagogical component. All faculty involved will help evaluate the proposals. Evaluation will also be based on discussion, collaborative work on exercises, and a presentation of the final research proposal.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Pre-requisites: intended for participants in the College's Guatemala Program. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS4029Water Worlds: Culture and FluidityThis advanced/ intermediate socio-cultural theory course examines human ecological relationships in a variety of watery spaces. In the humanities and social sciences, oceans, seas, rivers, and watersheds have recently emerged as particularly productive units of socio-cultural analysis. In contrast to the boundedness that can pervade area studies, these "water worlds" convey both the fluidity of cultural connections and the richness and detail of deep historical and ethnographic research. Moreover, water worlds help us consider people in their engagements with ecosystems and geographies. This course centers on a variety of watery regions, including the Mediterranean, the Pacific, river life in the Amazon, The Caribbean, the Black Sea, the Atlantic, the Indian Ocean, and human/ microbial relationships under the ocean. Topics addressed will include: the constructing of regions, critical approaches to geography, alternatives to globalization theories, and postcolonial theory. Intended for students who want to hone their chops in social-cultural analysis and/or those interested in the topic itself. All enrolled students MUST be prepared to read and discuss dense, complex material in cultural studies and social theory and should have background in learning to think and write analytically. Students will be evaluated on participation in class discussion and on outside written assignments.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: Permission of Instructor. Lab fee: none. Class limit: 15 Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4030Practicum in Environmental DiplomacyIn this course, students will learn about four different international environmental regimes -- the UN Convention on Biological Diversity, the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, the Committee on World Food Security, and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change -- through comparative classroom study and attendance at formal negotiating sessions. Each student will choose to focus their work during the term on one of the four bodies. They will be responsible for teaching their classmates about the types of problems addressed by the body and the politics surrounding those problems as well as the basic governance structures that shape the regime. Through comparative analysis of the four regimes, students will also examine common issues in global environmental governance, such as implementation and compliance, finance, capacity building, technology transfer, and mechanisms for civil society engagement. Work in the class will include a general presentation to the class on the basic elements of the regime and another presentation on the politics of a specific issue to be addressed by the body during its meeting. Each student will attend a negotiating session of their chosen regime and will write daily analytical blog postings while at the meeting. Students will be evaluated based on their two presentations, blog posts and contribution to the collective learning of the class through the term-long comparative analysis of the four regimes.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: Prior coursework in global politics, permission of instructor. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4031Power and GovernanceThis seminar will explore formations and effects of governance and institutionalized power in the Modern and contemporary worlds. We will consider some of the explicit ways in which power over self and other is enacted (through states, institutions, bureaucracies, law, policing and regulatory practices, and transnational governance bodies). Yet we will also ask how power itself is instituted implicitly in everyday routines and practices, in the way we carry our bodies, live our lives, and undertake our work. We will begin our inquiry with the assumption that power and governance are crucial elements of human social life, productive of social and cultural forms, and that examining how they operate is an important task for human ecologists. What is the relationship between power, social structures, and individual personhood? When and how might one stand outside or contest existing formations of power (if at all)? When does power become violent, or is it inherently so? Who has access to the tools of governance, and for what purposes? This advanced-intermediate class in socio-cultural and political theory will grant students a basic fluency in an array of concepts that are crucial in contemporary social scientific scholarship. Students will also read ethnographic texts to consider how theory is both applied and built in reference to particular case studies. Finally, students will learn to enlist theory to conduct their own analysis of contemporary situations. Students will be expected to take on an active role in defining questions for conversation and in facilitating discussion among their peers. Evaluation will be based on the quality of participation in discussion (50 percent) and on written assignments (50 percent).
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: Writing requirement must be fulfilled, as well as a reading intensive class in History, Art, or Human Studies. If you feel you can take the class but the above are not fulfilled, speak to the instructor. Permission of the instructor required. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4032The Arab Awakening and Emerging Issues in the Middle EastThis is a reading course tied to participation in the annual foreign affairs conference in Camden (Feb 22-24). Over the past several years, College of the Atlantic has developed a relationship with the conference that enables our students to engage the various events over the full three days. Every year highlights a particular theme, with a new set of focused panel discussions, national and international speakers, and readings. The 2013 Camden Conference will focus on the current status and future prospects of the Arab Awakening across the Middle East and its likely impacts upon U.S. policies and U.S. roles in the region. Topics will include: Political Developments and Public Order in Arab nations directly affected by the current ferment, Rise of Islamic Factions in Governing Roles as a result of recent elections, Effects among Palestinians and Impacts upon the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Regional Leverages and Rivalries, Prospects for Political Change in Iran and the state of U.S.-Iranian Relations especially in relation to tensions arising from the Iranian Nuclear Program, and Policies the United States should adopt in response to the Arab Awakening. The course will be a reading intensive and discussion based seminar that will include works from both the conference reading list as well as supplemental works that focus especially on Egypt, Syria and Iran. The goals of the class are: 1.) to prepare students to attend and play an active role in the kinds of policy analysis, discussions and debates typified by this conference (attendance is a requirement of the class) and 2.) to develop skills for doing individual and group research projects in comparative government and international relations. Evaluation will be based on class and conference participation, short written assignments, and written and oral presentations of group research on one of the three countries of focus. Students interested in the Middle East, international relations, global politics, diplomacy, US foreign policy, nonviolent social change movements, civil war and military strategy are especially encouraged to enroll. Students who have previously taken a Camden Conference course can also receive credit for this course and are encouraged to consider enrolling.
Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Lab fee: $100 (includes conference registration and lodging). Class limit: 12. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4034World LiteratureUsing seminal works by Machado de Assis, Luís de Azevedo, and Rabindranath Tagore as a starting point, this course will present non-English twentieth- and twenty-first-century world literature in the context of its relation to cultural, political, and personal identity. One of the main objectives of the course is to provide students with the critical tools necessary for an informed reading and analysis of texts, especially in light of questions of identity formation, an imagined or remembered sense of home and displacement or exile, and cultural conflict in today’s world. Acknowledging and becoming familiar with elements such as genre, period, style, and theme are also goals of the course.
Fiction and nonfiction in translation, with some attention to bilingual and parallel texts, will include short and full-length prose works by writers such as Lu Xun, Naguib Mahfouz, Tadeusz Borowski, Mahasweta Devi, Lydia Chukovskaya, Ingeborg Bachmann, Emile Habibi, Reza Baraheni, Gabriel García Márquez, Nawal el Saadawi, Aimé Césaire, Carlos Fuentes, Christa Wolf, Jaime Manrique, René Alomá, Carme Riera, Alifa Rifaat, Octavio Paz, Abé Kobo, Jack Agüeros, Empar Moliner, Ben-Zion Tomer, Francisco Goldman, Arundhati Roy, Shulamith Hareven, Haruki Murakami, Roya Hakakian, Edwidge Danticat, Pola Oloixarac, Abelardo “Lalo” Delgado, and Susana Chávez-Silverman. Evaluations will be based on discussion, three short papers, and one interpretive essay.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: WFO
HS4037Processing the Unexpected JourneyThe third course in a three-course sequence entitled "The Unexpected Journey: Art, Literature, and History on the Road in Nuevo Mexico" will provide students concentrated time and attention on classic, contemporary, and innovative texts of aesthetic and place philosophy as well as sustained time devoted to artistic, literary, and/or historical production. This course will include program and project orientation (Spring and early Fall 2013, as well as some summer reading), field trip debriefings while we are on the road in New Mexico, and a sustained period of study (in the literature of aesthetics), planning, and production of a substantial project centering on the literary and/or visual narrative or series of narratives they have chosen. Components of the course include: providing of faculty-assisted time to prepare for, reflect on, and process what students have seen and experienced; the reading of a variety of texts on both the aesthetics and philosophies of place; workshop time to conceptualize and develop a design for the final project; frequent consultations with the teaching faculty on the project's development; supported studio and/or research time to bring the project to completion; and checkpoints for collaboration and critique. To the extent possible, students will share their projects with the COA community at the completion of the term. Evaluation will be based on all these components of the course including class participation and the final project.
All three courses must be taken concurrently: Native American Literature: A Case Study of the Development of Literary Traditions with a New Mexico Focus (Waldron), Art and Culture in Northern New Mexico (Clinger), Processing the Unexpected Journey: Aesthetics, Experience, and the Creation of an Interdisciplinary Project (Clinger and Waldron).
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: Permission of Instructor. Class Limit: 8. Lab Fee: $1000 Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4038Current Topics in Climate Politics: Warsaw COP19The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is the principal intergovernmental treaty under which multilateral action on climate change is governed. The main goal of the course is to provide an opportunity for students at all levels to deepen their knowledge of the highly complex UNFCCC regime and climate politics at the global level. The course will provide an introduction to a range of current topics under negotiation in the UNFCCC process, such as market mechanisms or loss and damage, through lectures and readings of primary negotiating texts. Exact topics covered will vary from term to term, based on the current issues under negotiation. Students will also work to develop in-depth historical and content knowledge on one or more issues addressed under the regime that are of personal interest. Evaluation is based on active participation in class discussions and two presentations (mid-term and final) on a topic of the student's choosing.
The course is specifically designed to prepare students to participate on the COA delegation to the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP), held at the end of the term. However, participation at the COP is not required to enroll in the course. The course may be taken multiple times for credit.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: none. Class limit:?? Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4040Farm and Food Project PlanningHow does a farmer decide what to grow or raise? How will COA use the Peggy Rockefeller Farms (PRFs) and integrate it with Beech Hill Farm? How can students help to improve COA's food system? In this class, students will study the information available about our farms and food system from maps, historical data and previous student work. We will learn from specialists around the state who work with farmers to plan new enterprises and investigate potential markets, from COA faculty who have expertise in business planning, and from our farm managers. We will work through data on one farm enterprise together to understand what is needed to plan, implement and evaluate a food enterprise. In the second half of class, students will design independent or team projects for production enterprises, changes in food consumption practices or research related to production practices and our entire food system. Students will be evaluated based on their participation in class activities, the quality of their final projects, and the level of effort they put into developing their final projects. Projects that prove to be feasible and cost-effective using student labor and staff oversight will be continued, allowing COA to build up a portfolio of farm enterprises and ongoing research projects that are thoroughly vetted and documented and have student and staff or faculty support. This course is designed to follow the introductory course, COA's Foodprint: Our Local Food System. Students who have studied food systems through other means are also welcome.
Course level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: Basic knowledge of the components of food systems and the economic, social and environmental impacts of industrialized food systems. Relevant farming or processing experience if the student wants to design and implement a farm production or value-adding enterprise. For research projects, the student will be expected to have already acquired many of the necessary research skills. Instructor permission required. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4041Global Politics of FoodThis reading intensive course is tied to participation in the 2014 Camden Conference on "The Global Politics of Food and Water," 21-23 February 2014. This course will serve as a preparation for participation at the conference and will finish with a reflection on topics of the students' choosing. Prior to delving into the suggested Camden reading list, we will explore the historical framing of the idea of development in terms of food and population, and conceptions of the development needs for the African continent. The importance of agroecology will also be used in the critical analysis of proposed problems and solutions. The goals of the class are: 1) to prepare students to attend and play an active role in the kinds of policy analysis, discussions and debates typified by this conference and 2) to develop skills for doing individual and group research projects in one of the topics being presented in the conference. Attendance at the Conference is a requirement of the class.
Evaluation will be based on class discussion, leadership in discussions on one or two books from the Camden Conference reading list, the development and running of an evening discussion in collaboration with students from UMO and Unity College, and a final synthetic paper on a topic of interest.
Level: intermediate-advanced. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: $100. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4043Wilderness in the West: Promise and ProblemsWilderness has been the clarion call for generations of environmentalists. In a letter in support of the Wilderness Act, writer Wallace Stegner characterized the importance of wilderness as an essential “part of the geography of hope.” That single phrase and the current controversy surrounding the concept of wilderness provide the central focus of our explorations of wilderness in western lands. This course examines the question of wilderness from multiple perspectives in the hopes of providing an understanding of both the concept and real spaces that constitute wilderness. Through conversations with wilderness managers, field work, and experience in federally designated wilderness areas in National Parks, National Forests, Wildlife Refuges and on BLM lands, the course will also examine what “wilderness management” means on the ground in the varied landscapes of the western United States. In this context, we look at historical and contemporary acco unts of the value of wilderness, ecological and cultural arguments for wilderness, and the legal and policy difficulties of "protecting" wilderness. Considerable time is spent evaluating current criticisms of the wilderness idea and practice. The class will culminate at a week-long national conference celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act. The 50th Anniversary National Wilderness Conference provides an incomparable opportunity for students to hear from and interact with federal management agencies, academics, recreation experts, and environmental advocacy organizations. Presenting their final course work at this conference will also give students an opportunity to share their ideas and to receive valuable feedback from this sophisticated and well-informed audience of wilderness experts. Classwork emphasizes hands-on service-learning projects as well as reading, writing, and theoretical discussions. Students will be evaluated on journal entries, contributions to the class discussions, response papers, engagement in field activities, questions in the field, and contributions to group work. This course will be integrated with and requires co-enrollment in Reading the West and Ecology and Natural History of the West.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: Ecology, Our Public Lands, and permission of instructor and concurrent enrollment. Class limit: 9. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4044Fixing Food SystemsThis course will examine food systems and efforts to make them more sustainable by increasing their health, environmental and social impacts. Students will be introduced to different approaches to food system reform including voluntary corporate social responsibility; rights-based approaches; boycotts and other resistance strategies; and building alternatives such as food coops, farmers? markets and community-supported agriculture (CSAs). They will also study several different methodologies for understanding the full impacts of food systems (life-cycle analysis, ecological and social footprinting, contextual analysis, social return on investment, indicator reports). Students will work in teams to investigate a reform strategy that especially interests them, applying an analytical frame and critiquing its usefulness. The course will include at least one Saturday field trip to visit sites that are implementing food system reforms.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Class limit 15. Lab fee none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS4046Lincoln Before the PresidencyPerhaps one of the most widely evoked figures in modern history, Abraham Lincoln is frequently written about, quoted, and held up as an iconic example in contemporary public debate. Yet most people know little about Lincoln beyond a summary biographical sketch and a short speech or two. This is especially true as it relates to Lincoln's political life before the presidency despite the fact that these early years that offer us a wealth of moments which speak not only to the issues of the period, but also to broader questions of political action, compromise, and idealism.
This class is an intensive exploration into Lincoln's political career prior to his election to the presidency in 1860. Students will explore Lincoln's activities as they relate to the debate over slavery, the death of the Whig party, and the ascendancy of the newly formed Republican Party. Class reading and discussion will be driven by a threefold examination of broad historical contexts, biographical materials, and public speech texts. Students will spend an extended period of time on the analysis of the 1858 Senate debates between Lincoln and Stephen Douglas. While the class will focus intensely on the political events of the 1850's, the class will simultaneously track broader questions of political action in the context of a democratic society. As a result, students will have the opportunity both to acquire a richer understanding the historical moment that led to Lincoln's rise to power, as well as an opportunity to reflect on the larger issue of putting "truth" into political practice.
This course is intended for students with an interest in American history, political action, and public debate. Familiarity with these issues is not a pre-requisite for the class. The class will be held in a seminar style environment and will be driven primarily by in-class discussion. There will be an intensive reading load as well as an intensive writing component to the class. Final evaluation will be based on a number of writing assignments, participation in class discussion, and an individual class presentation.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS4047WasteThe term "waste" has varied definitions; it can suggest excess material not put to use, garbage, time or objects that are not made productive or useful, and that which is thrown away. Waste is both a verb and a noun, and the term often carries moral or ethical undertones; time should not be wasted, neither should food nor material goods, and of course, life itself should not be wasted. Waste should be reduced or transformed through consumption or recycling. Waste can occasion disgust and outrage, but even if less acknowledged, also fascination, desire and pleasure. Time spent idle is often time considered "wasted." Waste is also often understood as destructive and as the product of destruction. At the same time, waste can also be a necessary by product of its opposites. Psychoanalysis has drawn attention to feces association with gold and the notion of the gift of waste in the formation of subjectivity. Political economy, postcolonial studies, anthropology and feminist theory have all addressed histories of abjection, notions of excrement, disposable populations, and the ways in which humans have dealt with literal waste and those materials and lives that become understood as waste. In this regard, understandings of waste have been central for notions of value, productivity, desire, cleanliness and filth, inside and outside, and the place of difference. In this course, we will examine some of the varied ways in which waste has been understood - in terms of political economy, political theory, postcolonial studies and feminist theory, addressing waste in terms of identity, the natural environment, value, and the formation of what counts as human. Readings will include texts by Karl Marx, Frantz Fanon, Georges Bataille, Julia Kristeva, Sigmund Freud, Dominque Laporte, Mary Douglas, Jacques Lacan, Norman O. Brown, Sophia Stamatopoulou-Robbins, William Rathje and Cullen Murphy, Kathleen Millar, Hannah Arendt, Carl Schmitt, Kevin Bales, Paul Ricoeur, Ranjana Khanna, and Françoise Vergès. Students will be evaluated based on attendance, in-class participation, reading responses, and two short analytical essays.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 10. Lab fee: None. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS433Conflict and Peace
How does conflict arise and how is it best dealt with? What is peace and how is it best arrived at or practiced? This course combines a study of major theoretical perspectives with lab work practicing skills and disciplines associated with different traditions of conflict resolution, conflict transformation and peacemaking. Readings will include Roger Fisher, William Ury, Gandhi, Thich Nhat Hanh, Walter Wink, Gene Sharp, Dorothy Day, Elise Boulding, Gray Cox and others. Lab work will involve role plays, case studies, workshops with visitors, and field work. The course will also involve one, mandatory, weekend long workshop. Level: Intermediate. Offered every other year. *HS*
HS5012Wildlife Law SeminarIn his seminal essay on the "Land Ethic," Aldo Leopold explores the incongruity between man's legal structures and the natural world around him. This incongruity is particularly acute in the area of wildlife conservation. This course examines the legal, philosophical, scientific, economic, and political problems surrounding man's relationship with other species on this planet. The far reaching goals and impacts of the Endangered Species Act are a central focus of the course. Significant time is also dedicated to legal issues concerning marine mammals, Native American's wildlife concerns, migratory birds, animal rights, and agencies entrusted to manage wildlife. The growing role of international agreements to protect migratory and commercially valuable species is also covered. Special attention is given to debates currently underway over reauthorizing the Endangered Species Act and pending biological diversity legislation. Students are engaged in a term-long project that attempts to apply the principles of the course to a pressing wildlife issue in Maine. Evaluation is based on class participation and contribution to the group project.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisite: Environmental Law and Policy or permission of the instructor. Offered every third year. Class limit: 10. Lab fee: $15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS5013Methods of Teaching Writing Across the CurriculumThis course not only gives students knowledge and understanding of rhetorical theory and practice so they can work effectively with developing writers, but also provides them with a review of grammar, methods of evaluating writing, and strategies for teaching exposition, argument, and persuasion. Students put this knowledge to practical use by working as peer tutors in the Writing Center. Students participate in this course for one academic year and receive one credit. In addition to Williams' Style: Ten Lessons in Clarity and Grace and Irmscher's Teaching Expository Writing, students read numerous articles from College Composition and Communication, College English, The Writing Instructor, Language Arts, and English Journal, and Research in the Teaching of English as well as a text dealing with teaching writing in their specialty, e.g. Writing Themes about Literature or a Short Guide to Writing about Biology.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Working knowledge of grammar and usage, excellent writing skills, ability to work closely with people, and signature of faculty member in writing or education. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: ED W
HS5014Austen, Bronte, Eliot
HS5015Hydro Politics in a Thirsty WorldThis course will look at the complex issues surrounding the development, distribution, use and control of fresh water around the world. Focusing primarily on developing countries, we will examine three aspects of water use and control. First we will look at the scope and impact of water development projects; second we will examine the conflicts and solutions related to transboundary river basins; and third we will consider the implication of privatization of water resources. By way of background, we will review the variety of demands placed on fresh water and the political institutions related to water development. Students will gain a solid background in international environmental law as it relates to multilateral and bilateral treaties, customary law, multilateral institutions, and the guidance of international "soft law". They will also understand the allocation and equity issues surrounding the privatization of water and the political dimensions of this shift. Ultimately, these issues will give a concrete understanding of some aspects of the concept of sustainable development. Evaluation will be based on class participation, short analytical papers, and a substantial term long assignment.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Solid background in international politics, economics, human rights, or development policy through coursework or personal experience. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: $15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS5016Corn and CoffeeThis course explores the rich history of Guatemala through the lens of two vital products, corn and coffee. The crops provide insight into the global and local dimensions of both historical and contemporary reality there. The course will cover the history of Guatemala from pre-contact native society through the myriad changes wrought by colonialism, decolonization, the rise of the modern nation state, and the transformations associated with the rise of coffee as a major export crop. Corn and coffee provide a convenient vantage point from which to examine the social, economic, and cultural dynamics of native society on the one hand and the globally- connected production of coffee on the other. The course moves from a broad macro perspective on each crop to an intensive exploration of how both are produced in Guatemala. In this way, class participants will be able to look at how global historical trends in consumption have played themselves out in local communities. The class will simultaneously be able to look at the processes at work in pueblos throughout Guatemala that root the corn economy into rich cultural and social dynamics that are at the core of communal life. Using these two crops as a starting point, the class will allow students to develop a holistic and synthetic understanding how Guatemalans live their everyday lives embedded in intensely local realities even as they experience much larger national and international processes. The course emphasizes attention to the broad global dimensions of corn and coffee's production as well as the fine-grained study of Guatemala's socio-cultural life in historical and anthropological perspective. Through discussions of the books, this seminar-style course seeks to provide students with deep insights into the history of Guatemala while maintaining a sense of the global and regional context. Intensive readings will provide students with a snapshot of trends in both history and ethnography while broader synthetic analyses of both corn and coffee will embody more popular approaches to the topic. Students will lead discussions of the readings, write short synthetic essays, and undertake a research project for the class.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Signature of the instructor, any of the following courses: Native Empires to Nation States; Articulated Identities; American Worlds. Class Limit: 12. Lab fee: $50. Meets the following degree requirements: HS HY
HS5017Advanced Spanish ITBA
HS5018The Nature of NarrativeThis is an advanced writing focused course in which students practice the human ecology of literary analysis. We explore the 'mind' or consciousness of fictional writing (specifically, novels) by looking at how narratives make meaning, and at how we make meaning from narratives. The course surveys some of the best modern fiction, with a particular focus on works that highlight narrative technique, stretch the boundaries of the imagination, have a rich and deep texture, and push against the inherent limitations of textuality. Students also hone their reading and analytic skills as they work closely with twentieth century texts that broke new literary ground. Some of the authors we may read include: Joseph Conrad, Virginia Woolf, William Faulkner, Monique Wittig, John Dos Passos, Toni Morrison, N. Scott Momaday, Bessie Head, Manuel Puig, and Margaret Atwood. We also study some narrative (and possibly film) theory. Evaluation is based on class participation, frequent short response and passage analysis papers, and an independent project.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisite: Signature of Instructor. Offered every other year. Class limit: 15. Meets the following degree requirements: HS, WF
HS5019Contextualizing GodardJean-Luc Godard is a crucial figure in the history and aesthetic development of cinema. His generation was the first to clearly and systematically situate the art of filmmaking as a cultural tradition and to try to assimilate the full history of this form into their own work. From his beginnings as a critic for the influential "Cahiers du cinéma," Godard has always maintained that true criticism is as valid a form of filmmaking as the creation of an original work in the medium of film (or, more recently, video). This seminar will look at the ongoing role his films and writings play in cinematic discourse – we will examine the work of his fellow filmmaker/critics of the nouvelle vague, the theories and work of those who have influenced him, and the multiple threads of influence he has had on disparate styles and cultures of artistic creation and political engagement. Works viewed for this class will be, in part, chosen by the group to accommodate the directions we choose to explore together, but will likely include works by Rivette, Varda, Duras, Marker, Akerman, Kiarostami, Farocki, Aoyama and Wong. The primary visual text will be Godard’s late-period, self-reflexive masterpiece "Histoire(s) du cinéma." Some prior familiarity with Godard’s work is expected. For course assignments, students will have the choice between writing critical essays, creating original video work, or combining the two.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Film History, coursework in critical theory. Signature of instructor. Class limit: 10. Lab fee: $50. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS5020Advanced International Environmental Law SeminarThis course is designed to provide an overview of the use of international law in solving transnational environmental problems and shaping international behavior. We examine, as background, the nature and limitations of international law as a force for change. The course will then explore customary law, the relationship between soft and hard law, enforcement of international law, implementation mechanisms, and the effectiveness of multilateral environmental agreements. Special attention is given to existing international environmental law frameworks addressing climate change, Arctic and Antarctic development, ozone depletion, biological diversity, forest loss, export of toxic chemicals, and the host of issues raised by the 1992 United Nations Conference on the Environment and Development and subsequent environmental fora. Students will also consider the interface between international environmental law and other important international forces such as the Bretton Woods institutions, human rights frameworks, and international development entities. Students will be evaluated on the quality of their classroom comments and several analytical problem sets given during the term. Students will also be asked to complete a major research project examining the effectiveness of a treaty or a proposed international environmental legal arrangement.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Environmental Law and Policy, Global Environmental Politics, or Signature of Instructor. Class limit: 10. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS5021Proust, Joyce, and Beckett: The Limits of LanguageSamuel Beckett's early studies of the masterworks of Marcel Proust ("À la recherche du temps perdu," translated into English as "In Search of Lost Time") and James Joyce ("Finnegans Wake") are a useful starting point for examining the work of these three individuals as a particularly tightly-knit cluster of sensibilities working on the cusp of Modernism's slide into Postmodernism. All three writers were attempting to describe the totality of human existence, as particularly lived and reflected at the times they lived in. For Proust and Joyce this endeavor entailed a precise, expansive, and exhaustive technique, whereas Beckett responded with a contracted use of language reflecting a dwindling human capacity to comprehend our circumstance. All three authors challenged readers' perceptions of form and pushed language to the limits of its potential. In this course we will read extensively from "In Search of Lost Time," "Ulysses" and "Finnegans Wake" finishing with Beckett's trilogy of "Molloy," "Malone Dies," and "The Unnameable." Several of Beckett's short plays and late prose pieces will also be studied. These readings will be supplemented with critical, cultural, and historical studies by Badiou, Cioran, Campbell, Pinter, Kristeva, Lukács, Zizek, and others.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: The Nature of Narrative or signature of instructor. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $60. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS5023HatcheryThe Hatchery is applied Human Ecology in action; it offers students a bridge from coursework to actively creating their vision of the future. The Hatchery gives students from across the campus the opportunity to move from ideas to action. Hatchery students work either individually or in teams on a wide array of enterprises. Past projects have included: urban farming; international development; policy and planning; photography and film; alternative transportation; biofuel production; renewable energy; food systems; the arts; furniture production; technology development; social enterprise. Ventures have been for-profit and non-profit, encompassing the range from local businesses to scalable start-ups. Students selected for the Hatchery are required to devote an entire term to launching their venture. Each Hatchery enterprise, whether a team or an individual, must take the course for a minimum of three credits. Along with weekly instructional meetings, students receive office space, supplies, professional services, mentors and potential access to seed capital to develop their ventures. After the initial ten weeks of class, if students decide to continue their enterprises, they have access to the Hatchery space and resources for an additional nine months.
The Hatchery takes place in three phases:
--Application: Students apply for a position in the Hatchery over winter term.
--Rapid Prototype: The ten weeks of the Hatchery course. Students create a rapid prototype to test their ventures in the marketplace. These prototypes vary widely depending on the type of ventures.
--Creating an Enterprise Structure: During the ten weeks of the course, students will have weekly assignments that introduce key elements in an organizational structure and highlight operational considerations that are universal amongst enterprises.
--Development: The following 9-months. Students have access to the Hatchery space and resources to continue developing their enterprises.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor.
HS5024Topics in Philosophical PsychologyPhilosophical psychology involves the conceptual investigation of the nature of the human mind and behavior. Many challenging issues arise in the attempt to give causal and "naturalistic" accounts of such things as perception, intention, thinking, meaning, emotion and sensation. Various problems arise concerning the nature of the mind-body interaction, mental causation, the nature of self-knowledge, justification of our knowledge of others, self-identity, free will and the very possibility of psychology as a science. This seminar will examine several of these issues by reading some of the contemporary literature in philosophical psychology. The class will be run seminar style with individual student reports on the readings and a final project paper.
Level: Advanced. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS5026Advanced Seminar in Ecological EconomicsThis seminar explores selected themes in ecological economics, which is both the economics of sustainability as well as a paradigmatic approach distinct from the mainstream neoclassical approach to the study of economic activity. We will use the first several weeks of the term to define and outline ecological economics. We will use the remainder of the term to explore topics of student interest, focusing on three to five major themes; possible themes include methodological issues (post-normal science, transdisciplinarity), biophysical constraints to economic growth (entropy, technological pessimism, capital substitution, critical natural capital, resource peaks), sociocultural impacts of economic growth (consumption, happiness studies), energy and resource flow analysis (entropy), system dynamics (steady state economy, resiliency, degrowth), measurement issues (growth versus development, ecological footprint, Index of Sustainable Economic Welfare), institutional arrangements (adaptations of ideas from Douglass North), trade and development (embodied trade, pollution havens), community sustainability, philosophical issues (Buddhist economics, homo economicus), historical issues of sustainability (Malthusian perspectives, Jevon's Paradox). Evaluation will be via an exam at the end of the introductory phase, article précis, and a final poster presentation.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: two terms of intermediate neoclassical economics or permission of instructor. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: none. Meets the following degree requirements: HS
HS5036Russia and International Security
HS580The Pueblos of Guatemala: Interdisciplinary Research Project
This course will focus on the research phase of student projects in the communities of Tecpan, Patzun, Patzicia, and Comalapa in the Guatemalan department of Chimaltenango. Particular emphasis will be placed on helping students to work through the concrete process of research in complex communities. Drawing on years of research experience in Guatemala the lead faculty member in collaboration with other faculty will support students through all phases of research from conceptual issues to the detailed pragmatics of everyday research tasks. Building on previous background students will undertake intensive ethnographic research, oral history work, and interviewing. The course will emphasize the most effective fieldwork techniques for individual projects, but it will also help them learn to recognize the limitations of such techniques.
Level: Advanced. Limited to students participating in the College's Guatemala Program.
HS601Gender in Global Perspective
This course will explore the construction and reproduction of gender inequality in a global perspective. We will study the social position and relations of women and men (political, economic, cultural and familial) in comparative and cross-cultural perspective. Using the United States and various non-western case studies, the course will seek to explore the topic broadly. In so doing, students will learn about the diversity of women's and men's experiences across class, racial-ethnic groups, sexualities, cultures, and regions. This class will also provide students with an overview of the different theoretical perspectives that are sometimes used to explain and understand women's and men's experiences. This class will be taught via a combination of lecture and discussion. Students will be evaluated on class participation, several short papers, and a final project. Level: Intermediate. Lab Fee: $10. Class limit 15.
HS6013Immersion Program in French Language, Art and CultureThis course is offered through collaboration with CAVILAM as part of the COA program in Vichy, France. Students take 20 hours a week of language classes and workshops taught by immersion methods and advanced audio-visual techniques. Students live with host families in homestays and take part in a variety of cultural activities. They are carefully tested and placed at levels appropriate to their ability and are expected to advance in all four language skills - reading, writing, speaking and listening - as gauged by the European Erasmus scale of competency.
Level: Beginning to advanced (depending on prior language level). Pre-requisite: at least one previous French course and permission of instructor; this course is intended to complement a term of COA instruction in Vichy, France. Class limit: 12. Program fee: $1500.
HS607Political Campaign Communication: Messaging and Advertising
This class will provide a broad introductory overview of the history, practice, and theories that encompass political campaign communication. The overall goals of the course are three-fold. First, to provide a broad survey of the history of political campaign communication and advertising as it has developed in the United States. Secondly, to confront some of the pragmatic issues that go into producing political communication strategies for electoral candidates. Thirdly, to empower the student to read and critically analyze political campaign communication materials they confront in their daily lives. This class will include a specific emphasis on radio, television, and "new media" vehicles as sources of messaging. While we will focus heavily on the last 60 years of presidential elections, students will also apply their work to local, state, and national campaigns currently underway. The class will be highly interactive with discussion being the primary mode of instruction. Final evaluation will based on a combination of class participation, a series of analytical response papers, an in-class presentation, and a final comprehensive project dealing with a contemporary political campaign. This class will include a weekly 3 hour lab that will involve the screening of multimedia campaign texts, some practical work in designing messaging strategies, and the occasional outsider speaker. The class is open to all students, regardless of their experience in politics or their knowledge of American history. It is well suited for introductory students in their first years of study, but would also be equally valuable to advanced students interested in the topic. Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Class limit: 18. Lab fee: $25. *HS* *HY*
HS633Political Action and Greek Philosophy
The class will attempt to tackle the issue of ethical political action in a democratic society from the level of individual practice. Utilizing a series of dialogues between philosophers and "sophists" from the Classical Greek period as a springboard, students will explore a wide variety of topics related to civic engagement and public debate. Though the readings for class will be thousands of years old, students who successfully complete the course will be able to make linkages to problems contemporary to their own daily lives including: does truth speak for itself, what is the role of the speaker in society, where is the line between "spin" and effective persuasion, and are all politicians nothing more than "con artists?" Included in the readings will be works by Gorgias, Plato, Aristotle, and Socrates. Students will also go outside of the assigned readings to apply these ancient debates to modern social/political questions. This is an introductory-intermediate level course for students with an interest in philosophy, political action, governance, and public persuasion. Familiarity with these issues is not a pre-requisite for the class. In class activities will be driven primarily by student discussion centered on flashpoints within the readings. There will be an intensive reading load as well as an intensive writing component to the class. Students will also be occasionally asked to "perform" sections of dialogue in class. Final evaluation will be based on a number of varied writing assignments, participation in class discussion, and several independent reports on contemporary social questions Level: Introductory. *HS*
HS652Beyond Relativism: Negotiating Ethics in the 21st Century
How can - and should - questions of ethics get resolved in the contexts of interdisciplinary and multiperspectival dialogue, conflict and decision making - as when two communities need to resolve disputes and each have different paradigms of thought and action? These questions may come up in dealing with human ecological problems when people from different professions, religions, or other cultural and social settings need to deal with each other to address common problems and opportunities. They also arise in business, government and NGO work when people pursue socially responsible projects and policies of a variety of sorts. This course will look at the common strategies in normative ethics for dealing with these problems as well as explore ways in which methods of negotiation and conflict transformation can also be helpful. Readings will include classic texts from Aristotle, the Bible, Mill, Kant, Nietzsche, and Buber as well as contemporary readings in professional ethics, in conflict transformation, and philosophical ethics (such as Alasdair MacIntyre's After Virtue). Students will write a series of short papers on texts and case studies and develop a final project in which they work to identify and resolve an ethical problem. Evaluation will be based on class participation, papers, and the final project Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Lab fee: $20. *HS*
How do motion pictures express ideas? Why do we respond to them in the ways we do? Film theorists have approached these questions from contexts as diverse as formal composition (sound, mise-en-scene, color, cinematography and editing), signs and symbols (semiotics), cultural and/or gender concerns, and psychoanalysis. In this class, we will practice using these and other theories to understand and analyze moving pictures. Each week we will screen one or two feature length movies as well as a number of short films. Screenings will be complemented by source texts from critics, theorists, artists/filmmakers and cinephiles. Students may choose to take this course as writing intensive; those who do will be required to write and revise three or four critical response essays based in analytical frameworks covered in the course. All students will be required to complete a final research paper and presentation. Students should expect to spend 7-9 hours a week in class meetings, labs and screenings (in addition to writing, research). Students will be evaluated on papers, final project and participation in discussions. Writing Focus option. Level: Introductory/intermediate. Previous art class recommended. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: $30 *WFO*
HS714Modernization, Cultural Change, and Democracy
This course will focus on the cases of Iran, Nigeria, China and India and explore the common and divergent factors that shape political and social change in these countries. The ultimate question - to be tackled if not answered - is whether there is a common path that all nations pursue as their economy grows and society modernizes or whether, in fact, cultural, contextual and circumstantial differences lead to many possible outcomes, some of which will not at all resemble the Western model of a democratic state. In pursuing these questions, students will consider the persistent effects of colonialism and neocolonialism, the importance of culture and religion, the results of mass education and the spread of advanced technology. Students will also consider the ways in which popular demands are expressed -and heard - in the four very different political systems and the extent to which women and minorities are able to fully participate in the political process. This class will be taught via a combination of lecture and discussions. Students will be evaluated on the basis of participation in discussion, two short papers, and a final exam. Students will read two texts and a range of articles updating the political events in the four countries. They will also read commentaries challenging the perspective presented in the texts chosen. Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 15.
HS725Advanced Tutorial in Interdisciplinary Research Methods
This is an advanced tutorial for students who want to use history, anthropology and social science research in their work on community organizing, social change efforts or public policy advocacy. Human ecological approaches to such problems and studies require using interdisciplinary methods to integrate different points of view and different theories in a more comprehensive understanding of a person, text, situation or problem. But how can we do that? What sorts of things are ?methods?, ?theories? and ?disciplines? and how can they be integrated? How is theoretical research related to practical action? How should we deal with the ethical issues that come up in research? How do modern vs. post-modern or neo-liberal vs. neo-Marxist or hermeneutic vs. quantitative views of these things differ? The aim of this tutorial is to cultivate students? abilities to deal with these questions in sophisticated and effective ways in the context of on going research and action projects in human ecology. It deals with challenges in choosing and using methods of research, the construction and application of theories in interdisciplinary contexts, and the negotiation of issues arising in planning and pursing a research process or action project and dealing with ethical issues that arise in it. It is specifically designed to support student work in internships, residencies, senior projects and master?s theses. It presupposes familiarity with the practice of at least two disciplines in the humanities and public policy areas (e. g. history and political science, literature and economics or ethnography and agro-ecology). Students will meet once a week as a learning group and also once a week, independently, with the professor. Tutorial sessions will focus on two kinds of readings: 1.) a selection of articles and chapters dealing with methodological, theoretical, ethical and other aspects of research processes and action projects and 2.) case study materials focused on the pr
HS726Continental Philosophy: Self & Other from Kant to Foucault
This course will introduce students to – and give them practice working with – some of the central concerns, concepts, and philosophical methods associated with the continental European traditions that grow out of and respond to the transcendental idealism initiated by Kant. Ways in which understandings of objects, the Self, freedom and relations with others vary will be used as central themes to explore connections and contrasts between these philosophers. The central texts focused on will include include material from Kant’s FIRST CRITIQUE and his moral philosophy, Hegel’s PHENOMENOLOGY, Kierkegaard’s FEAR AND TREMBLING, Martin Buber’s I AND THOU and Foucault’s THE HISTORY OF SEXUALITY, PART I. Other texts that may be read in excerpts include, 20th century writings on phenomenology and existentialism Tillich, Freire, Sartre, de Beauvoir. Class format will alternate between lecture, discussion and seminar style textual exegesis. Evaluations will be based on a series of short papers and a final paper on an independent reading agreed upon. Class discussions will include occasional examination of passages in the original language of the primary texts. Students with fluency in German, French, Spanish or Danish will be encouraged to practice exegesis in the original language. The level will be introductory to intermediate but students wishing to take the course at a more advanced level with more extended work in exegesis of difficult texts may arrange to do so.
Level: Introductory. Lab fee $20. Class limit: 20. *HS*
HS743Classic Shorts: Money, Honey
A young woman who needs a job. A boy who steals. The ethics of a corporate franchise across cultures; an elder who will give away a cure for snakebite-but not sell it. The cost of electricity in Islamabad. A clash of values between brothers. A gamble. A bet. These are some of the characters and incidents we?ll encounter in this section of Classic Shorts, as well as the questions they lead us to weigh and contemplate. What would-or wouldn't-you do for money? Have you ever cheated anyone? What do you consider priceless in the green, green worlds of this fragile planet we share? How do you define "rich," "poor," "enough"? Our focus on this genre-the one William Trevor calls "the art of the glimpse"-may not take us all the way to Moneta, that temple of Juno in Rome where money was coined, but it will invite us into the literary territory of how writers develop a scene, secure a metaphor, and offer us as readers the tremendous wealth of discovering and naming some of fiction?s truths. Please come prepared to read closely, discuss openly, and experiment in the art of the glimpse. Critical inquiries, midterm conference, and final paper (original short-story option encouraged) required. Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Class limited: 15.
HS749Tutorial: Witches and Witchcraft
Surveying the role and historical development of beliefs, practices, and persecution of witches and witchcraft in Europe, the United Kingdom, and the Unites States from medieval to modern eras, this tutorial is an advanced study that will involve extensive reading across cultures and genres. The impact of influences on the West from Africa and the Caribbean will be explored, as will depictions of witches in religious and legal documents, mass media, visual art, popular tales, fiction, and drama. Central questions are: How have attitudes toward and images of witches and magic reflected commonly shared fears, biases, beliefs, and hopes of various cultures? Why did witch hunts and interrogations utilizing torture intensify during various periods? Why were those exhibiting special powers or knowledge--such as healers or "entrancers"-greeted with rage, fear, and severity through the ages? Did different social classes harbor similar or disparate views of witches? In what ways did the public equate "bewitching" with control or usurpation of personal identity and responsibility? This course will meet regularly; students may select two topics for short papers and a third for more intensive treatment as a final project which may be in mixed media. Level: Advanced
HS750Seminar in Yucatec History and Culture
Yucatan is the region of Mexico with a large Yucatec Maya population and a complex history shaped by conquest, colonialism, separatism, and revolutionary upheaval. This course, which will serve as a pre-requisite for the winter term Yucatan program, seeks to familiarize students with the contextual knowledge they will need to work in rural communities of the Peninsula?s Zona Maya, or Maya zone. The course is designed around the question of what you need to know before undertaking research or advocacy in an international setting such as Yucatan as well as preparing students to work in other people?s communities. Readings, exercises, and discussion will provide a rigorous interdisciplinary introduction to the historical and ethnographic scholarship on Yucatan with a particular emphasis on helping students to recognize and master relevant contextual knowledge and specific fieldwork techniques. Students will learn about the history of the region from the conquest to the present as well as learning to examine the dominant historiographies which have shaped scholars? accounts of that history. Similarly, the class will provide an in-depth insight into Yucatec society through a series of classic ethnographic works even as we critically examine ethnographic presumptions and practices. A final research proposal will be a primary product of the course, and it will be the basis of eight-week independent student work in Yucatan. Students will also be evaluated on participation in discussion, discussion leadership, and short essays. Course is limited to students accepted to the Yucatan program. Level: Intermediate/Advanced. *HS* *HY*
HS754Tutorial: Readings in European History, 1350-1650
This tutorial will focus on the history of Europe in the early modern era through a series key readings. The tutorial will explore the intellectual, religious and political processes of change that characterized the period from rough 1350 to 1650. We will touch on themes such as renaissance humanism, the protestant challenge to church orthodoxy, the rise of the absolutist state, and the emergence of new political forms. The tutorial will use secondary and primary texts as examples from different parts of Europe, and it involves a weekly seminar focused on readings selected by the professor and students. Students will also undertake a term-long exploration of a historical theme of their own which they will present at the end of term. Students will be evaluated on a series of short essays, the quality of their contribution to weekly discussions, and their final project. This class is appropriate for students with some background in the history of Europe or other relevant academic background. Permission of instructor required. Intermediate.
HS756Post Colonial African Cinema
Africa was the last continent to develop a culture of filmmaking controlled by its indigenous peoples; 1966 saw the first African film to be produced independent of Colonial control (although still largely in an oppressor's language, in this case French). The fact that African film was nascent at a time of worldwide revolution, at a time in which most other filmmaking regions were entering second or third waves of creative renewal, combined with a historical lack of financial support for the filmmaking enterprise - a symptom of ubiquitous financial and political instability - has resulted in some of the most unique, diverse cinema of the past fifty years. Ranging from the established, artistic, state-regulated cinema of Burkina Faso to the populist, truly independent movies coming out of Nigeria (home of the second-largest film-producing industry in the world), the African continent has given birth to new voices and new models of production and distribution that challenge established norms. These models may offer a new paradigm for a worldwide industry which is struggling in the face of fragmented audiences and new, potentially more egalitarian, technologies. Although African films have been receiving worldwide acclaim for decades, it is only recently that many of these ground-breaking films have received attention or been available for viewing in the United States. Course texts, screenings and discussions will be supplemented by individual research projects. Level: Introductory/Intermediate. Recommended prerequisite: a course in film studies or anthropology. Class limit: 20. Lab fee: $40. *HS* *WF* optional
HS765Money, Politics and Law
This seminar will provide an intensive examination of the role money plays in influencing politics and government as well as the myriad of laws, policies, and regulations that have been crafted in an attempt to limit this influence. The primary focus of the course will be contemporary campaign finance reform initiatives within the United States at both the federal and state levels. This includes a comprehensive examination of current laws and regulations, the historical setting that gave rise to these policies, possible upcoming challenges to the existing structure, and the viability of proposed alternative modes of electoral financing. In addition to the topical emphasis on law and policy, we will also step back and tackle the broader philosophical issues that arise whenever societies attempt to determine what is, and is not, legitimate "participation" in the democratic process. While the bulks of our case studies will come from within the United States, we will also examine various models of campaign financing from countries around the globe. This will be a reading intensive course driven by in-class discussion and deliberation. In addition to the common focus of the group, students will be encouraged to pursue their own individual research interests related to the topic of money and government. Evaluation will be based on a combination of class participation, periodic short form writing assignments, and a final research project. Interested students should have previous experience with coursework in politics, governance, the legal process, or policymaking. Level: Intermediate; Permission of the instructor is required; *HS*
HS766Afghanistan, Pakistan and India: Crossroads of Conflict
This is a reading course that will culminate with a trip to the annual foreign affairs conference in Camden, ME. The conference features experts from all over the world talking on a range of topics connected with US relations with Afghanistan. It is based on the assumption that no assessment or understanding of the situation in Afghanistan can be separated from attention to critical factors and developments in neighboring Pakistan which in turn leads to a focus upon the complex and volatile relations between Pakistan and India. Topics include: India?s internal coherence and stability after another year of global recession; who are the Afghans in cultural, political and religious terms?; political and military stability in Pakistan and its attempts to curb radical elements. Basic background reading on India, Afghanistan and India will expand to the more specific questions on inter-country relationships and US Foreign policy. Evaluation: Students will be asked to participate and lead discussions based on specific questions that will be given to them for each class (the material will come from the extensive readings they are required to do). In addition, students will be asked to write a paper on one of the themes in the conference (to be submitted at the end of the course). They will also be asked to write an evaluation of the Camden Conference: in specific how and why how it expanded (or did not expand) their understanding of the subject. Level: Advanced; Class limit: 10; Lab fee: $100
HS767Journalism in the New Media Age
Understanding how journalism functions is key to developing the ability to communicate ideas and issues to the broadest possible audience. This course covers writing news stories and analysis, photojournalism, and creating and maintaining a blog on a subject of the student?s choosing on Hancock County?s largest community information website - Fenceviewer.com. Other topics include writing for the Internet, investigative reporting, the business side of journalism, and avoiding libel. Guest speakers from a network news outlet and Maine Public Radio will introduce students to the production and writing requirements of electronic media such as television and radio. Students may also have stories published in the Mount Desert Islander. Evaluation will be based on the quality of the student?s writing in their portfolio, the effectiveness of their presentation, and participation in class discussion and peer review. This course would be appropriate for students who can write at the introductory or intermediate level. Level: Introduction/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. *W*
HS775Immersion Program in French Language and Culture
This double credit course is offered through collaboration with CAVILAM university as part of the COA program in Vichy, France. For eight weeks, students take 20 hours a week of language classes and workshops taught by immersion methods and advanced audio-visual techniques. Students also live with host families in homestays and take part in a variety of cultural activities. They are carefully tested and placed at levels appropriate to their ability and are expected to advance in all four language skills - reading, writing, speaking and listening - as gauged by the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages scale of learning levels. Level: Beginning to advanced (depending on prior language level). Requirements: co-enrollment in HS776 "Doing Human Ecology in Cross-cultural Contexts: France" and permission of instructor. Class limit: 12
HS782Tutorial: Advanced Seminar in Human Ecology
The purpose of this tutorial is to review the many uses of the term ?human ecology?. It begins with an historical review of the academic and intellectual origins of human ecology. From these foundations, we proceed through the development of more interdisciplinary approaches to human ecology --- working with primary source materials (e.g., books, articles, position papers, academic program descriptions and related documents). We will further explore the activities of various regional, national and international associations and the aims of leading educational institutions. Assignments and discussions will revolve around several current problems that face human ecology. In particular, we will focus on: various theoretical controversies within and between biological and human ecology; issues and proposed methods of inter-disciplinary problem-solving, planning and application; and the growth of professional opportunities in human ecology worldwide. Evaluations will be based on careful reading and review of assigned materials, participation in discussions, individual papers and a collaborative group project. Level: Advanced; Permission of instructor required; Class limit: 3 Permission of instructor required.
HS783Tutorial: Evolving Narrative
This advanced tutorial continues work done in "Starting Your Novel" and/or previous fiction tutorials: intensive in-class attention to narrative issues of detail, viewpoint, time & tense, continuity, language, plot and character development, endings and overall design related to reader response. All work is thoroughly discussed in the context of narrative aesthetics in extended weekly small-group sessions; students are expected to write 8-15 pages a week of new material and to provide a revised and edited copy for evaluation at the end. Level: Advanced. Prerequisite: Starting Your Novel. Instructor permission required. Level: Advanced Limit: 5
Climate change is one of the largest and most difficult challenges faced by contemporary societies. The challenge has multiple facets: environmental, social, political, economic - each with its own complexities. This course focuses primarily on the social, political and economic components of the climate problem, framed by the concept of climate justice. In the introductory section of the course students are introduced to basic conceptions of justice, the latest findings of climate science and possible impacts on regional scales, as well as the ongoing intergovernmental climate negotiations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. The main body of the course is dedicated to understanding the concept and implementation of climate justice: how the costs of climate change impacts and efforts to address climate change could or should be distributed between rich and poor, global north and global south, and what are the possible means whereby those costs might be collectively addressed through an intergovernmental agreement. Students will be evaluated based on regular quizzes, several short papers, class participation, and a final synthetic paper or project. Level: Introductory. Lab fee: $10. *HS*
Are we approaching a point of radical change in human history in which exponential technological change will result in a "singularity", a transformation so rapid and fundamental that we will not be able to comprehend it? What will be the principal features of life on Earth in the mid-future - 20 to 40 years from now - and how should we best plan to deal with them? To what extent will they be the result of unavoidable historical trends, human planning and invention, or random contingencies? What skills and methods can we learn to imagine the future, invent it, predict it, plan for it and/or cope with it? This is an advanced course in human ecology that will adopt a very interdisciplinary approach. It will include readings in public policy by social scientists and futurists like Ray Kurzweil, Alvin Toffler, Otto Scharmer and James Martin as well as works in fiction and film. Classes will combine a seminar format for critical discussions of readings with exercises in using different methods for dealing with the future. These will include a weekend workshop in futures invention using methods developed by Warren Ziegler and Elise Boulding. This workshop will be open to public participation. Members of the COA community interested in renewing the College curriculum are especially encouraged to participate. Students will be expected to take part in leading seminar sessions, develop reports on alternative approaches to dealing with the future and visions of it, and do a major final project. The final project should a vision/description of some key features of a desired, possible future and strategies for promoting it. It may use interdisciplinary theories, predictive models, narrative, visual art or other creative approaches to developing it. Standards of evaluation will presume intermediate to advanced levels of competency in the disciplines used in the final project. There will be a weekly lab session. Level: Advanced. Pre-requisites: Signature of instr
HS791Classic Shorts: What's on our Plates
Questions of appetite. Questions of sustenance. Questions of nurturing. What's on our plates is"inevitably" filled with such questions, with food as primary source and sensual delight, with food as geography and climate, culture and economy, fact and metaphor. The short-story writer who includes anything about what's on our plates also invites us to consider food memories and associations of every kind: where our food comes from, who prepares it and how, who we do or don't share it with, what grows where in a season of bounty, what?s absent in a time and place of deprivation, drought, violence. The stories we'll read include a devastating announcement at a family luncheon in Brazil, the diets of a fat girl who hungers for love, what?s on the menu at a backyard restaurant in a mid-level Haitian slum, a journey to a shrimp shack south (south!) of New Orleans, a roof-top job for a California grocery store, an anorexic's visit to a hammam in Paris, the slaughtering of a pig post-Chernobyl, and a monkey in an Argentinean kitchen. Our focus on this genre -- the one William Trevor calls "the art of the glimpse" -- will also provide many different tastes of how writers develop a scene, simmer a metaphor, and serve us as readers discovering and naming some of fiction's truths. Please come prepared to read closely, discuss openly, and experiment in the art of the glimpse. Critical inquiries, midterm conference, and final paper (original short-story option encouraged) required. Level: Introductory/intermediate. Class size: 15.
HS795Advanced Seminar in Economics: Globalization
This seminar will use the topic of economic globalization as a context in which to learn, tinker with, and critique a wide range of microeconomic, macroeconomic, and economic development theories, models, and empirical evidence. There is no general economic theory of globalization, so our coverage will necessarily be eclectic, selective, and largely based on student interests. As a departure point for using economics to explore the contours of globalization, we will employ a rubric encompassing five themes: 1) fundamental processes (such as economic growth and population dynamics) that lead to economic globalization; 2) studies of the flows of economic inputs and products (addressing capital flows and controls, migration and remittances, international commodity markets, and trade and trade imbalances); 3) the institutions and governance that influence economic globalization (such as pre- and post-colonial institutions, corporate structure and governance, and the roles of the IMF and WTO); 4) inequality (addressing global class structure, foreign aid and sovereign debt, and gender issues); and 5) crises (currency crises and contagion, the recent financial crisis). Evaluation will be based on participation in extensive discussions in and out of the classroom, submission of pr?s and problem sets, and a synthetic capstone essay. Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: courses in intermediate economics and international issues or equivalent, and permission of instructor. *HS*
HS799Tutorial: Classical Chinese through Poetry
The learning of classical Chinese is the key to thousands of years of Chinese literature. One of the richest and most enjoyable approaches to the classical language - which is very different from the Chinese spoken language - is through China?s long poetical tradition. This tutorial serves as a basic introduction to the reading and writing of characters and the language patterns and structures most commonly used. Pass/fail grade option required. Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisite: Reading and Writing Chinese Characters. Class limit: 5
HS802Themes in East-West Philosophy
The philosophies of Eastern and Western cultures have many themes in common though their methods of approach and conceptual terminology are often far apart. This seminar explores some elements in the works of Meister Eckhart, Heidegger, Wittgenstein and Derrida that seem to overlap with various themes in Hinduism and Buddhism such as the nature and existence of the Self and the limits of language. Evaluation based on a final paper and seminar participation. Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: two philosophy courses or permission of instructor. Class limit: 15. *HS*
HS804Challenges from Asia: China, India and Japan
This is a reading course that will culminate with a trip to the annual foreign affairs conference in Camden (Feb 18-20.). The conference features experts from all over the world talking on a range of topics connected with US relations with China, India and Japan. The course is based on the assumption that no understanding of the foreign relations among these countries and the US, the rest of Asia and elsewhere in the world can be achieved without a serious consideration of the changing social, political and economic situations within the three countries. Students will come to this class with different levels of knowledge and experience of these subjects, some with very little information on these countries. Basic background reading on China, Japan and India will expand to more specific questions on inter-country relationships and US Foreign policy. Evaluation: Students will be asked to participate and lead discussions based on specific questions that will be given to them for each class (the material will come from the extensive readings they are required to do). In addition, students will be asked to write a paper on one of the themes in the conference (to be submitted at the end of the course). They will also be asked to write an evaluation of the Camden Conference: in specific how and why how it expanded (or did not expand) their understanding of the subject. Level: Advanced. Class limit: 10. Lab fee: $100
HS810Nature of Narrative II
This is an advanced course in which students practice the human ecology of literary analysis. We explore the "mind" or consciousness of twentieth and twenty-first-century fictional writing (specifically, novels) by looking at how narratives make meaning, and at how we make meaning from narratives. The course accomplishes this by surveying some of the best and most challenging works of modern fiction, with a particular focus on those novels that highlight narrative technique, stretch the boundaries of the imagination, have a rich and deep texture, and push against the limitations of prose fictional textuality. Students will hone their reading and analytic skills by working closely with texts that broke new literary ground. Authors will include several of the following: Virginia Woolf, William Faulkner, Djuna Barnes, Alain Robbe-Grillet, Toni Morrison, Manuel Puig, Italo Calvino, Clarice Lispector, Ishmael Reed, H?ne Cixous, Gerald Vizenor, Jeanette Winterson, Julio Cortazar, as well as others. We will also study some narrative and novel theory. Evaluation will be based on class participation, frequent short response and passage analysis papers, and an independent theory-based research and novel project. Level: Advanced. Permission of instructor required. Class limit: 12 *HS* *WF*
HS811Hunger, Food Security and Food Sovereignty
Meeting future food needs has risen to the top of the global agenda since 2008, when sudden surges in the cost of staple foods led to riots in many countries and an increase to over one billion people worldwide who could not access enough food for a healthy diet. This course will examine food crises and famines in history and today: what caused historical famines, and what is causing more recent price volatility? What is different about today's food crises? What measures have been proposed to reduce the number of hungry and feed insecure people, and how effective are they? How do we know? This will be a service learning class, in which each student will choose an organization that is trying to tackle hunger and food insecurity with which to serve. We will be working carefully with host organizations to ensure that students are able to contribute meaningfully and learn from their contributions. Evaluation will be based on class participation, a service-learning project, and regular reflection papers. Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: None. Lab fee: $50. Class limit: 16. *HS*
HS815Tutorial: Classical Chinese through Poetry II
The learning of classical Chinese is the key to thousands of years of Chinese literature. One of the richest and most enjoyable approaches to the classical language - which is very different from the Chinese spoken language - is through China's long poetical tradition. This tutorial serves as a basic introduction to the reading and writing of characters and the language patterns and structures most commonly used. This is a continuation of Classical Chinese through Poetry and students must have taken the first section in order to register for this tutorial. Level: Advanced. Prerequisite: Classical Chinese through Poetry. Class limit: 5
HS816Feminism and Fundamentalism
Feminism and Fundamentalism is a seminar in which principal issues surrounding the impacts of extreme religious conservatism on the power and status of women, and the reactions against this of women seeking to establish their own rights in society, are considered. The topic is relevant to all religions and all countries. Assigned reading includes much material on Islam and Hinduism. However, students will read about Christianity and Judaism as well and may choose to do their papers on any country and any religion. Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 15. *HS*
HS821International Financial Institutions
International financial institutions (IFI) such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the regional development banks mobilize significant resources for both public and private sector investment in developing countries. Beyond this central role in lending and grant making to developing countries, the Global Environment Facility of the World Bank serves as the financial mechanism for major environmental treaties, including the Convention on Biological Diversity and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. What exactly are these institutions - how do they operate and who controls them? Why were they created and how have they come to be so powerful? The course will examine the history of the institutions, their governance structures, and their mechanisms of operation. Special attention will be paid to their role in the debt crisis and the subsequent era of structural adjustment lending, civil society critiques of the environmental and social impacts of bank lending, and the role and operation of the Global Environment Facility as financial mechanism for the environmental conventions. Readings will include primary documents of the IFIs themselves as well as decisions of the governing bodies of the UN conventions. We will also read both academic and civil society analyses and critiques of IFI lending. Evaluation will be based on class discussion as well as several problem sets assigned throughout the term and a final analytical paper. Level: Intermediate/advanced. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. Students should have course background in international politics and/or economics. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $10. *HS*
HS823Tutorial: Selected Themes in Ecological Economics
This advanced tutorial explores selected themes in ecological economics, which is both the economics of sustainability as well as a paradigmatic approach distinct from the mainstream neoclassical approach to the study of economic activity. We will use the first several weeks of the term to define and outline ecological economics. We will use the remainder of the term to explore topics of student interest, focusing on three to five major themes; possible themes include methodological issues (post-normal science, transdisciplinarity), biophysical constraints to economic growth (entropy, technological pessimism, capital substitution, critical natural capital), sociocultural impacts of economic growth (consumption, happiness studies), energy and resource flow analysis (entropy), measurement issues (growth versus development, ecological footprint, Index of Sustainable Economic Welfare), institutional arrangements (biodiversity protection, climate change economics), trade and development (embodied trade, pollution havens), community sustainability (philosophical issues (Buddhist economics, homo economicus), and historical issues of sustainability (Malthusian perspectives, Jevon's Paradox). Evaluation will be via a "gateway" exam at the end of the introductory phase, article pr's, and a final poster presentation. Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: one term intermediate economics and instructor permission; students will be expected to come to the tutorial with a firm grasp of neoclassical methods and assumptions. Class limit: 5. Lab fee: none.
HS834Egypt: Political History and Modernization
This course will focus on the political history of modern Egypt primarily in the period of 1952 to the present. Students will study how the political culture and major political power structure changed as Egyptian society and polity modernized. The recent revolution and its aftermath will be analyzed in the context of the Inglehart modernization theory that all nations move towards demanding individual rights and autonomy as their economy grows and society modernizes. In pursuing this question, students will consider the persistent effects of colonialism and neocolonialism, the importance of culture and religion, the results of mass education, the spread of advanced technology and the impact of globalization. Students will also consider the ways in which popular demands are expressed -and heard - in Egypt and the extent to which women and minorities are able to fully participate in the political process. Each class will include a short lecture and student-led discussion. Evaluation will be based on two short papers, a take-home final, and discussion leadership, participation, and presentation of individual research. Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: none. *HS*
HS840Tutorial: Narrative Fiction and Non-fiction
HS841Tutorial: Possible Future Paradigms
This tutorial explore the possibilities for very deep change in humanity?s framework for understanding and existing in the world. What are alternatives to the dominant paradigms of today and how can we best understand these alternatives? What might life on earth might be like in the near future? How will people live? How will people think? How will people organize themselves? Who will have power? What will we value? How and what will people eat and consume? How do paradigms shift? Will there even be a new dominant paradigm? How will we get there - by force or by choice? As the tutorial proceeds we will progressively focus the alternatives considered, the questions focused on and the ways in which they are dealt with based on student interest, findings in research and analysis we develop as a group. Members of the tutorial will meet weekly with the professor to discuss readings and short response papers. Mid-way through the term they will conduct interviews with an array of faculty and students. They will also aim to have a weekly open forum for discussion with members of the COA community at large, to provide wider perspective and more ideas. The final project will be for students to craft a large scale concept/idea map of the material encountered in the term which will include their own vision of a future world. Students will be evaluated on the extent to which their comments in discussion and in the weekly open forums, their response papers and their final projects demonstrate: a thorough and critical reading of texts; a progressively deeper grasp of the contents of the texts; the ability to articulate and analyze systems of ideas cogently; the ability to think creatively and concretely about alternative futures paradigms; the ability to write clear, effective, analytic texts; and an ability to design and pursue independent lines of inquiry and self-directed learning on their own.
HS854Farms, Orchards and Cider: Agricultural History in England
This course will be an intensive field-based exploration in England of the history of English agriculture through the lens of the production, consumption and marketing of apples. Students will travel to England during winter break to learn about the changes in social, cultural and economic aspects of farming in England from Roman times to the present with an emphasis on the evolution of rural farms and landscapes. We will discuss land tenure, land use, labor practices, farming practices, and much more at sites throughout England as we think through what historical insights can tell us about the past, present and future of farming and the rural economy. Students will do exercises on landscape history, visit museums, farms, cider producers and research stations as well as meeting leading experts. The course will continue with a seminar during the winter term on campus in which students will pursue projects inspired by their experiences and learning in England. Student evaluation will be based on the participation in the field-based components of the class in England and the project-based learning back on campus. The course will include an English language immersion component. Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. Program Fee: $1,200. Class limit: 12. *HS* *HY*
HS856Arguing over Slavery: Lincoln, Douglas & the Debates of 1858
Perhaps one of the most widely invoked figures in modern history, Abraham Lincoln is frequently written about, quoted, and held up as an iconic example in contemporary political discourse. His debates with Stephen Douglas over territorial policy and the extension of slavery have come to define a particular moment in American political and rhetorical history. Though many people have heard of the Lincoln-Douglas debates of 1858, very few people have read them, and even fewer still have a clear sense of what the debates were about in the first place. This is particularly unfortunate as a close reading of these texts reveals a much richer picture of the political climate leading up to the Civil War. This class is an intensive exploration into Lincoln?s political career in those years leading up to his presidency, the debates he engaged in with Douglas, the major issues involved, and the way we make sense of those events today. Students will explore Lincoln's activities as they relate to the issue of slavery, the death of the Whig party, and the ascendancy of the newly formed Republican Party. The first several weeks of the course will be dedicated to providing historical context to political climate of the antebellum period. We will then spend an extended period of time engaging in close argument and textual readings of each of the 1858 Senate debates between Lincoln and Douglas. Students will track the arguments as they evolve and devolve throughout the campaign. We will wrap up the term by analyzing what role these debates played in shaping Lincoln?s future political career. While the class will focus intensely on the political events of the 1850's, we will simultaneously track broader questions of political action in the context of a democratic society. When does the need to be a moral actor come into conflict with being a political actor? This course is intended for students with an interest in American political history, Constitutional law, rhetorical analysis,
HS857The United States in the 21st Century World: End of Empire?
This is a reading intensive course that is tied to the annual "Camden Conference" held in Camden, Maine. This three day conference brings in experts from all over the world to discuss a range of topics related to foreign policy, international relations, and diplomacy. Over the past several years, College of the Atlantic has developed a relationship with the conference that enables our students to engage the various events over the full three days. Every year highlights a particular theme, with a new set of focused panel discussions, speakers, and readings. The topic of this year's conference is "The U.S. in a 21st Century World: Do We Have What it Takes?" Some of the anticipated discussion sessions will involve the following questions: What will it take to be an economic superpower in the Twenty-First Century? What are the likely threats the U. S. will face in the Twenty-First Century? Does American society have what it takes to be a Twenty-First Century "world citizen?" Is the US still the "indispensible nation" to help resolve seemingly intractable problems? What skills will Americans need to remain competitive in the Twenty-First Century? How secure is the energy future of the U.S.? How does gridlock in Washington affect US foreign policy? What is the role of media in influencing foreign policy? This class is built to parallel the thematic cornerstones of this year's Camden topic. We will cover some of these topics in depth, leave off others, and add a few of our own. It is modeled as a reading intensive and discussion based seminar that will include works from both the conference reading list as well as supplemental works that I have added. The goals of the class are twofold. First, to prepare students to attend and play an active role in the conference (attendance is a requirement of the class) by providing them a background immersion in the topics that are at the center of this year's conference. Secondly, to assist students returning from the conferen
HS858Global Politics of Sustainable Development: 20 yrs after Rio
The Earth Summit that took place in Rio in 1992 defined the following two decades of global cooperation on environment and development issues. This course serves to review the history of those two decades and prepare students to be active participants in the UN review conference to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in June 2012. Students will read primary documents from the original conference and the 10-year review conference (the World Summit on Sustainable Development), and preparatory documents for the upcoming summit. They will examine positions of the main country blocs and the contributions of major UN specialized agencies (UN Food and Agriculture Organization, UN Development Program and UN Environment Program). A central axis for study and analysis of documents and positions will be the political economy of sustainable development. Evaluation will be based on class discussions, weekly written summaries of information contained in readings, and a final presentation or analytical paper on a topic of their choosing. Course level: Introductory/Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: none. *HS*
HS860Tutorial: Social Power and Identity Politics
This advanced tutorial explores the dynamics of power in relation to issues of age, class, gender, race, nationality, ethnicity, religion, language, disability, sexuality, and other social identities. In this reading and discussion-based seminar, we will consider these interactions in personal, institutional, and international spheres by looking at theoretical and empirical studies. For example, do men really have a greater desire for power? Is it possible to share power within a group? How do colonial legacies impact social relations in post-colonial states? Students will read historical, psychological, and sociological theory on patriarchy, identity politics, and neo-colonialism, and apply their understanding to current problems of social justice. Weekly seminars will provide opportunities for students to critically examine key texts and collectively construct understandings about the nature of power, identity development, and "culture wars." Evaluation will be based on class discussions, written responses to readings, case study research, and an independent or collaborative project of the student's choice. This tutorial will be of particular interest to students of social and political theory as well as those seeking to examine their personal relationship to power. Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Prior coursework or independent reading in psychological/social/political theory recommended; permission of instructor. Class limit: 6. Lab fee: $30.
HS864Ethnography, Advocacy, and Ethics
This course considers how ethnographic research and writing can inform and, in turn, be informed by the work of advocacy. Starting from the premise that advocacy is something that we all do, in different ways and at different levels, we will consider what the tools of ethnography can provide us for both furthering, and also critically unpacking, our roles as advocates. We will also consider how we are often called upon to act as advocates through ethnographic fieldwork: to support one cause over another or take a position - even when it might be easier to look away. At the center of our inquiry will be questions of ethics. What does it mean to advocate responsibly and in an ethical manner? How can advocacy help us develop an informed, responsible ethnographic practice? How can ethnography help us understand the effects and (often unintended) consequences of advocacy projects? In addition to articles and primary sources, we will read full-length ethnographies that examine in detail different advocacy projects. Topics may include: health; human rights advocacy around minorities, culture, gender, and food; environmental advocacy; humanitarian and non-governmental interventions; political asylum; local advocacy projects in Maine and on MDI. This intermediate course is intended for students interested in critically examining the work of advocacy and ethnography and who are ready to read and engage intensively both in class and in their writing. Students will be evaluated on class participation and written assignments; there may also be a field component (to be determined in discussion with students). Level: Intermediate. Prerequisites: none. Lab fee: none. Class limit: 15 *HS*
HS889Tutorial: Revisiting The Lakes and Ponds of Mt. Desert
"The Downeast Guide to the Lakes and Ponds of Mt. Desert" was published in 1989. Since that time, the use, physical aspects, and management of the water bodies have changed. In this tutorial, students will work with "Lakes and Ponds" author Bill Newlin and faculty member Ken Cline to update, revise, and see through to publication, a second edition of this definitive guide to the fresh water on Mt. Desert Island. Initial tasks will involve a careful review of the existing text to determine aspects that require updating. Students will then research specific lakes and ponds for new material or other information that reflects the changes that have occurred in the past 23 years. Students will document these changes in text, photography, cartography, or other artistic means depending on interest and ability. A significant amount of time will be devoted to coordination with the cartographer, the book designer, and others involved in the production and publication of the book. This tutorial will allow students both to learn about Mt. Desert Island and some of its most precious resources while refining research and writing skills as well as learn the organizational, planning, and collaborative skills necessary to publish a book. Students will be evaluated on contributions to the final volume, quality of research, timeliness of product, and collaborative effort.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. Class limit: 5. Lab fee: none.
HS897Tutorial: Economics of Cooperation, Networks & Trust
HS912Tutorial: FAO Committee on World Food Security
MD042Humans in Place: Natural/Cultural History of Maine's Islands
This intensive field-based course is an interdisciplinary examination of the changing relationship between humans and landscape in a region where people have lived continuously for several thousand years: the eastern Gulf of Maine and the Bay of Fundy. The Gulf of Maine?s vast archipelago of islands is the setting for a wide range of both human and non-human communities. This is one of the richest areas of biological productivity in eastern North America and its fisheries have supported human cultures since pre-Columbian times. Sitting on the intersection between cold northern currents and the warm waters of the Gulf Stream, the region provides feeding and breeding grounds for a broad range of species from both arctic and tropical regions. For example, the Gulf provides breeding habitat for more than half of all seabirds nesting in eastern North America, and is also a critical feeding area for the endangered Right Whale and many other marine mammals. In this course we will study historical and current relationships among human cultures, fisheries, seabirds, and marine mammals, focusing on the feedbacks that change or preserve human cultures and economies. These case studies will serve as a model for understanding other land/seascapes, including the home regions of participants. The class will be team-taught by faculty from three colleges within the EcoLeague, and supported by several guest speakers. Two students from each EcoLeague institution will be selected to participate. The bulk of the course will be based on three sites: the College of the Atlantic?s two field stations on Great Duck Island and Mt. Desert Rock, and Grand Manan Island in the Bay of Fundy, Canada. Course begins August 18th, ends on September 8th in Bar Harbor, ME. Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Ecology and/or Natural History, and at least one other course in interdisciplinary environmental studies/human ecology, and permission of EcoLeague faculty panel through written application p
MD043Penguins to Polar Bears: Journeys Across the Ice
This course is a general introduction to the Arctic and Antarctica. We will begin by examining the unique ecologies of the polar regions by reviewing the life histories of some iconic polar creatures - Polar bear, Arctic tern, Emperor penguin and others. This ecological framework will provide a backdrop for our review of the history of exploration in these harsh regions. The search for the Northwest Passage and the quest for the Poles captured western attention for hundreds of years, and the stories of hardship, heroism, absurdity, and sheer luck are compelling. The course concludes with an examination of the human ecology of both poles - politics, resource exploitation, tourism and the rapid climate changes affecting both regions. Assessment will be based on classroom participation, several short papers, and an independent research project. Level: Introductory. Class limit: 15
MD1010Islands Through Time14,000 years of Human Ecology on the Coast of Maine
The coast of Maine is an ideal location for studies of the effects of changing ecologies, landscapes, and cultures on the human experience. 14000 years ago, the entire area was covered with a dense ice sheet, and at present we are facing the uncertain future of Global Warming. Between these points, the coast and islands have experienced flood, fire, earthquakes, and an enormous range of human and non-human occupants. This team-taught course will use the inter-disciplinary lens of Human Ecology to examine the consequences, implications, and potential meanings of our dwelling within both this particular landscape and other landscapes perhaps initially more familiar to students. A strong emphasis will be placed upon developing a "sense of place" through the examination of a novel, scientific writing, music, and experiential venturing upon the land and seas, learning about the history, culture, ecology, oceanography and geology of the Maine coastline, both in and by the ocean. Although a substantial element of each day's work will take the form of field trips, students will also be responsible for readings, attending a series of lectures by faculty and local experts, and working with multimedia forms. Interest in music, writing, and ecology are strongly encouraged. Students will be evaluated based on class participation, a daily log of their experiences plus several short "response pieces" to assigned readings, and a multi-media presentation capturing some aspect of their learning. Students will receive narrative evaluations and a grade of CREDIT or NO CREDIT.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: Signature of Instructor.
MD1011Rivers: A Wilderness OdysseyRivers: A Wilderness Odyssey begins and ends on the COA campus. Through reading and discussion, students will gain an introduction to the natural history, conservation, literature, and emotional and psychological aspects of wilderness and river systems. While on Mount Desert Island, students will explore Acadia National Park, which provides a connection to the outdoors for millions of visitors each summer. These experiences and observations will be contrasted with the experience of a downriver canoe-camping expedition on the much more remote Allagash Wilderness Waterway in northern Maine. Writings by Thoreau as well as contemporary authors will provide context for the canoe expedition. The expedition will serve as our laboratory to experience and explore group dynamics in a wilderness setting and to examine conceptions of leadership, authority, and community as well as the transformative power of shared adventure. Upon returning to campus, students will compile samples of their writing and photographs to be shared in a final group presentation for assessment of their learning.
Level: Introductory. Signature of Instructor.
MD1012Farm to ForkFood is fundamental. Eating is a shared human experience, and carries meaning beyond mere survival. Our bodies, our communities, and our culture are formed as we eat. In addition, these relationships highlight systemic inequities and injustices. With this in mind, this course explored how we're fed. Engaging with various food production practices through site visits and daily farm chores provided a foundation from which to inform an examination of contemporary food systems, including their sociocultural, political, economic, and ecological assumptions and impact. In addition to critically analyzing current structures, envisioning and enacting more sustainable alternatives was also emphasized. Interactions with people at the forefront of efforts for change were central to elucidating these issues. Site visits included numerous small diversified farms, community gardens, educational farms, farmers markets, land-based aquaculture, and the largest blueberry production site in the U.S. In addition, course participants interacted with a number of speakers who shared their work related to food systems, including with migrant farm laborers, coordinating
gleanings networks, school gardens, food policy, community meals, and food sovereignty.
This intensive course included a diversity of educational modalities designed to encourage participants' holistic engagement with content, including connections to their everyday lives and possibilities for responsive action. Despite being based on a campus, the course was grounded in expeditionary learning principles. Active participation with learning activities and as members of the group-a collaborative learning community-was an essential component of this course. Course participants completed pre-course assignments that included a number of readings within food and agriculture studies, a film viewing, and two writing assignments (1. outlined their interest in the course and prior engagement with course themes and topics 2. research on their family's history with agriculture and their family's food culture). During the course, participants completed additional readings, wrote daily Synthesis Reflections, posited Daily Questions, completed mid-term and final evaluations of their participation and the course, worked together on a summative group project using food to communicate complex course themes, and put together a final presentation for the campus community and their families.
Level: Introductory. Prerequisites: none.
MD1013Introduction to Farm Animal Management
MD4011National Park Practicum: Designing the ANP Nature CenterThis trans-disciplinary, project-based course is for students interested in imagining creative and effective ways to convey science-based information to a diverse audience. Participants will engage in a collaboration between students, Acadia National Park staff, and COA faculty to create a conceptual plan for the redesign of the nature center in Acadia National Park. With over 50,000 visitors annually, The Sieur de Monts Nature Center has long served as an important space for natural history interpretation in the park. Students will work both on- and off-campus to examine current research in ecological change over time and concurrently explore innovative approaches in the design of educational environments. Students interested in the life sciences, arts and design, experiential and informal education, and science education/interpretation will work together to outline educational goals, generate ideas and potential plans for exhibits and activities that will shape how visitors perceive and interact with Acadia National Park.
Each student will build on their interests and background while participating in a creative team process that follows national park guidelines for the development of interpretative media. While engaging in this work, students will hone skills in translating research, writing and editing for exhibits, employing visual communication, and designing educational spaces. Evaluation will be based on level of collaboration and class participation; ability to effectively communicate in writing and/or visual terms; on quality of class projects and presentations.
Level: Intermediate/Advanced. Prerequisites: permission of instructor and one or more of the following: Curiosity and Wonder; Experiential Education; Creating Effective Environments For Learning; Biology Through the Lens; Advanced Graphic Design; or at least one *ES* course. Class limit: 12. Lab fee: $45.00
MD5010Humans in Place: Natural and Cultural History InterpretationLake Superior’s Apostle Islands are home to diverse and unique biotic communities, including a number of Wisconsin endangered species and one of the greatest concentrations of black bears in North America. The islands also have a long and storied history of human occupation and are an exceptional laboratory for understanding various perspectives on the natural environment. Team-taught by faculty from two Eco League colleges, the course will travel by kayak and canoe from a base at Northland College so students learn to tell the stories of this intriguing area.
Level: Advanced. Prerequisites: Ecology and/or Natural History, and at least one other course in interdisciplinary environmental studies/human ecology, or instructor consent. Class limit: 10. Course Fee: $675 include food, equipment and boat use.
This course will examine essential questions about how groups function, whether the group is a committee involved in institutional governance, a class of adolescents, or a cohort of business colleagues. Readings, activities, and assignments will weigh traditional and alternative conceptions of leadership, power, authority, community, diversity, membership, and exclusion. Students will engage in case discussions, writing (including autobiography and creative writing), and research activities. A major component of the course will be the observation and analysis of a group (e.g., in a community organization, business, or school). The final paper will be the creation and analysis of a case. Evaluation will be based on class participation, responses to readings, facilitation of a case discussion, an autobiographical essay, a short story, reports of observations, and the final paper. P/F grading only. Students will be expected to take the course Pass/Fail, with special arrangement to made for those needing to take it for a grade.
Level: Intermediate. Class limit: 15. Lab fee: $50. Meets the following degree requirements: HS ED
Human Studies Faculty
Ph.D. University of North Carolina
» Course areas: food systems, food policy, agrarian studies, sustainability
- Elmer Beal
B.A. Bowdoin College
M.A. University of Texas
» Course areas: anthropology and contemporary culture
- Ron Beard
B.S. University of Maine
M.S. Agricultural and Resource Economics
» Course areas: collaborative leadership, community planning and decision making, skills in community development and non-profit management
- Richard Borden
B.A. University of Texas
Ph.D. Psychology, Kent State University
» Course areas: environmental psychology, community planning and decision making, personality and social development, contemporary psychology, philosophy of human ecology
- Heath Cabot
B.A. University of Chicago
M.A. University of California, Santa Cruz
Ph.D. Cultural Anthropology, University of California, Santa Cruz
» Course areas: anthropology, history, culture, ethnography
- Colin Capers
B.A. College of the Atlantic
M.Phil. College of the Atlantic
» Course areas: film history, film theory, regional and political cinemas, screenwriting, literature, writing and composition
- William Carpenter
B.A. Dartmouth College
Ph.D. English, University of Minnesota
» Course areas: autobiography, creative writing, film studies literature, mythology, poetry
- Kenneth Cline
B.A. Hiram College
J.D. Law, Case Western Reserve University
» Course areas: public policy and environmental law with an emphasis on parks, wildlife, and watershed and river conservation
- Gray Cox
B.A. Wesleyan University
Ph.D. Philosophy, Vanderbilt University
» Course areas: social theory, political economics, history
- Jay Friedlander
B.A. Colgate University
M.B.A., F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business at Babson College
» Courses areas: business, marketing, financials
- Kenneth Hill
B.A. University of Michigan
Ed.M. Counseling Processes, Harvard University
M.S. Cornell University
PhD. Educational Psychology and Measurement, Cornell University
» Courses areas: education, psychology
- Anne Kozak
B.A. Salve Regina College
M.A. English, St. Louis University
Course areas: advanced composition, English as a second language, methods of teaching writing, technical writing
- Todd Little-Siebold
B.A. , M.A. University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Ph.D. Tulane University
» Course areas: history, Latin American studies
- Gordon Longsworth
B.A. College of the Atlantic
M.R.P. Planning, University of Pennsylvania
» Course areas: geographic information systems, land use planning
- Isabel Mancinelli
B.S. Catholic University of America
M.L.A. Landscape Architecture, Harvard University
» Course areas: community and regional planning, landscape architecture
- Jamie McKown
B.A. Emory University
M.A. Georgia State University
Ph.D. Rhetoric, Northwestern University
» Course areas: debate, democracy, politics, history
- Karla Pena
B.A. Social Sciences, Autonomous University of Yucatan
Teacher certification, School of Education at the Autonomous University of Yucatan
» Course areas: Spanish, Yucatecan culture, Mayan history and culture
- Doreen Stabinsky
B.A. Lehigh University
Ph.D. University of California at Davis
» Course areas: agriculture and food policy, global environmental politics
- Candice Stover
B.A. Northeastern University
M.S. Pennsylvania State University
» Course areas: memoir, personal essay, short story, writing seminar
- Bonnie Tai
B.A. Johns Hopkins University
Ed.M. Harvard University
Ed.D. Learning and Teaching, Harvard University
» Course areas: education, intercultural education, social power and identity, group dynamics
- Davis F. Taylor
B.S. United States Military Academy
M.S. University of Oregon
Ph.D. Economics, University of Oregon
» Course areas: economics, community sustainability, alternative economic development
- Katharine Turok
B.A. Wheaton College
M.A. Comparative Literature, Rutgers University
» Course areas: writing and composition, world literature
- John Visvader
B.A. City University of New York
Ph.D. Philosophy, University of Minnesota
» Course areas: philosophy, religion, theory, Chinese poetry and characters
- Karen Waldron
B.A. Hampshire College
M.A. English, University of Massachusetts Boston
M.A. Women's Studies, Brandeis University
Ph.D. English and American Literature, Brandeis University
» Course areas: American literature, minority literature, international women's literature, literary history, narrative theory, feminist literary studies, American studies