Classes

If There is No God, All is Permitted: Theism and Moral Reasoning (Gen Ed 1161)

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2022

Ethics & Civics icon with text

Jay Harris

For centuries in the West, Jewish and Christian thinkers (among others) have asserted that moral judgment is impossible without some concept of the deity. So convincing were they that one important character created by a Russian author of the nineteenth century was led to express the idea (if not exactly the words), "if there is no God, all is permitted."... Read more about If There is No God, All is Permitted: Theism and Moral Reasoning (Gen Ed 1161)

Making Memories (Gen Ed 1060)

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2021

Aesthetics & Culture icon with textHistories, Societies, Individuals icon with text

Stephanie Sandler

How we make, keep, and lose memories throughout our life is one of our great skills as human beings, and also something of a mystery. Is what we think of as memory ours individually, or is it based on shared experiences – national, communal, familial, and with peers? Also far from decided is how much memories are made and put at risk by biological processes in the brain, and how much by the verbal, visual, and experiential inputs that we call daily life. These questions have broad cultural impact as well as their personal presence in each individual’s life.... Read more about Making Memories (Gen Ed 1060)

Manufacturing Revolutions: The Factory and the Making of the Modern World (Gen Ed 1143)

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

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Victor Seow

From spam to smart phones, much of the stuff we consume in our daily lives are factory-made. In the process of producing for our endless needs and wants, the factory has mobilized and motivated some of the latest advances in science and technology, defined and redefined the nature of work, and, through its polluting presence, pushed against the limits of our planetary boundaries.... Read more about Manufacturing Revolutions: The Factory and the Making of the Modern World (Gen Ed 1143)

Harvard Gets Medieval (Gen Ed 1160)

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Aesthetics & Culture icon with text

Daniel Lord Smail

Starting in the late nineteenth century, Harvard got medieval. Through direct purchase and through the collecting activity of numerous alumnae/i, we began collecting all sorts of texts and artifacts generated by the medieval world of Arabic, Greek, and Latin civilizations. The things that arrived in Harvard’s collections came in many forms, ranging from great architectural monuments and motifs to little stuff such as belt buckles, pilgrims’ flasks, and fragments of pottery.... Read more about Harvard Gets Medieval (Gen Ed 1160)

Consent (Gen Ed 1138)

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Ethics & Civics icon with text

Elaine Scarry

Consent will be studied in four domains:  Part I-the relation of consent and the body in marriage, in medicine, and in state citizenship; Part II – the act of consent and dissent in war (beginning with the dissent of Achilles in the Iliad and including readings up to the present); Part III – freedom of movement, freedom of entry and exit in citizenship (including contexts where right of movement has been denied); Part IV – consent as the basis of cultural creation.... Read more about Consent (Gen Ed 1138)

Music and Poetry (Gen Ed 1157)

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

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Suzannah Clark

Song—the combination of music and words—is arguably the most prominent musical soundtrack of our lives and has been for centuries. This combination seems to accomplish something that neither the words nor the music can achieve on their own. Yet, writings about vocal music are often preoccupied with aesthetic, philosophical, religious, and political debates over which of the two art forms deserves primacy: music or poetry.... Read more about Music and Poetry (Gen Ed 1157)

Who Do You Think You Are? The Ethics of Identity (Gen Ed 1009)

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Ethics & Civics icon with text

Jay Harris

Who are you? We typically answer this question with a name and a collection of identity terms. Our identities may be ascribed or chosen; we often experience them as simply given, and we sometimes struggle against them. We use these identity categories, in turn, to structure decisions, negotiate relationships, and otherwise shape our lives.... Read more about Who Do You Think You Are? The Ethics of Identity (Gen Ed 1009)

Borders (Gen Ed 1140)

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

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Mary Lewis

As a society, we pay particular attention to borders when incidents such as children separated from their asylum-seeking parents or tear-gas being used to deter entry throw the legal divide between two nation states into sharp relief. But seldom do we stop to think about what a border is, or when and why some borders are defended more aggressively than others.... Read more about Borders (Gen Ed 1140)

Understanding Islam and Contemporary Muslim Societies (Gen Ed 1134)

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Histories, Societies, Individuals icon with text

Ali Asani

The course is an introduction to the fundamental concepts of Islam and the role that religious ideas and institutions play in Muslim communities around the world. Its main concern is to develop an understanding of the manner in which diverse notions of religious and political authority have influenced Muslim societies politically, socially and culturally.... Read more about Understanding Islam and Contemporary Muslim Societies (Gen Ed 1134)

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