Writing I: Stories of Racial Formations
Professor Julia Mendoza
There are many ways to express yourself: through memoirs, autobiographies, poems, letters, diaries, and even tattoos. In this course, we will ask ourselves what it means to not only write one’s own story, but to also be thoughtful to the sensitive task of writing someone else’s story. This class will explore the importance of telling stories in order to understand how stories can illuminate our understanding of social justice. Accordingly, we will seek to read stories along relative interdisciplinary scholarship in order to understand how the power of a narrative can be used for thinking about broader notions of racial formations.
Elective: Practical Journalism
Professor Aaron Gell
In this introductory course, taught by a veteran editor and reporter, students will learn how to report and write non-fiction news articles in a variety of formats. They’ll explore the difference between a news story, an editorial, a news analysis, a profile, a first-person essay, a Q&A, a critical review, and a long-form narrative feature, completing assignments in each form over the course of the semester. The class will explore how reporters uncover information, and how to identify “fake news.” It will provide a foundation in journalistic ethics, teaching students to recognize their own biases and untested assumptions and to strive for objectivity, accuracy and fairness. It will explore how the internet has hammered the old business models that supported the news media, and how it’s opened up surprising opportunities for the rest of us to be heard. And most of all, it will identify the ways in which the techniques of journalism—research, critical thinking, interviewing, fact-checking, persuasive writing, editing and all narrative storytelling—can be applied to everyday life.
Cultural Foundations I: Representations of Women in Literature
Professor Carolyn Dinshaw
In this course, we will read literature – essays, novels, and poetry – by women. But this immediately begs some questions: What is a woman, and who gets to decide? We will need to read theories of gender and sexuality in order to help us start to address such questions as well as the questions that flow from those: How do we think about differences among women? What are the forms of power that separate women from each other, and from men? What about people who are not very well described by the terms “woman” and “man”? Our literary texts are written mostly by writers from the U.S. and England in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, including Virginia Woolf, Charlotte Brontë, Jean Rhys, Toni Morrison, Ana Castillo, and Dorothy Allison.
Elective: Introduction to Social Work
Professor Carol Tosone
In this introductory social work course students will learn about the history of the social work profession and its development in the United States, including the dual focus on advocacy for social justice and core counseling skills to engage at-risk clients from diverse backgrounds. Students will learn about the fields of practice in which social workers operate: aging, child welfare, criminal justice, health and mental health, substance abuse, trauma and disaster. Students will also learn about the impact of poverty, oppression, racism, and trauma on individual, family, and group development, and the role of the social welfare system in clients’ everyday lives. Emphasis will be placed on the importance of students developing core assessment, communication and engagement skills, as well as the ability to self-reflect and work ethically to enhance the lives of clients in need.
Social Foundations III: Introduction to Food Studies
Professor Sara Franklin
How do food, culture, the natural environment and human society relate to one another? In this course, we look at food’s role in constructing individual and group identities, considering identity in terms of the body, race, class, gender and religion, as well as geo-political situation. We will read and watch selections representing a range of food media, past and present; explore connections between trends in food culture and media and contemporary politics; introduce methods and analytical approaches used in the emerging field of food studies; and practice some of those approaches and methodologies (ex: participant observation, autoethnography, oral history) in class assignments.