GRW Course Descriptions
GRW 101-10 History of Freedom
Professor Thomas Finnegan – TTH 11:30 a.m.-12:45 p.m.
Throughout Western history the concept of freedom has been both greatly debated and analyzed by historical figures. Each of these individuals has advanced the concept of freedom in their respective historical perspectives. This course will engage in discussing the significant contributions that these great figures and the events that occurred during their lifetimes have made in the evolution of Western freedom; students will explore the similarities between the concepts, issue and obligations of individual and societal freedom from ancient models up to our present decade.
GRW 101-11 Vikings: The Original Globetrotters
Professor Julie Markin – TTH 1:00-2:15 p.m.
Between A.D. 800 and A.D. 1100, the Norsemen of Scandinavia, or Vikings, developed into a powerful global force, expanding eastward into present day Russia and westward across the Atlantic, reaching present day Newfoundland. What drove the Vikings into a colonization frenzy? How did they coordinate such lengthy and costly expeditions? What happened to all of these colonies? How are these early Viking colonies connected to the world today? What lessons might we learn from these early global travelers? To answer these questions, we will use archaeology, history, literature, and paleoecology. We will read selections from the sagas and historical accounts written during and after the Norse expansion. We will also look at current research that places migration, settlement, and decline in an environmental, political, social, and economic context. In addition to group exercises and discussions, students will perform several focused writing exercises, complete a final research paper, and present the results of their research to the class.
GRW 101-12 Islam and the Muslim-Christian Experience
Professor Joseph Prud’homme – MWF 12:30-1:20 p.m.
This course will explore the religion of Islam and the interactions between the Muslim and Christian worlds. Attention will be given first to the essential teachings of the Prophet Mohammed. The course will then explore the history of the interaction between Muslims and Christians, with focus both on the problem of religion and violence and the grounds for Abrahamic solidarity and mutual respect. We shall explore this interaction from the time of the Crusades until the contemporary period. The course will offer students special enrichment activities, including field trips to the National Islamic Center in Washington, D.C. and guest lectures.
GRW 101-13 Global Theater
Professors Michele Volansky and Dale Daigle – MWF 11:30 a.m.-12:20 p.m.
Balinese dancers. Bunraku puppets. British farce. While these three styles of play making may seem to be completely unrelated, they were all created to express, share and celebrate what it means to be human. Using live performance as a springboard, this class investigates three questions: What are the fundamental elements that go into making theater, regardless of where they occur or the form they take? What are the key theatrical traditions from Asia, Africa, the Americas, Australia and Europe? How have these traditions been transformed, combined and altered as the globe has become smaller? Students explore their own notions of what theater is, present research about traditions other than their own, develop their own aesthetic based on watching and discussing plays in performance and participate in the creation of a theatrical event.
GRW 101-25 Plants for People: Global and Local Impact
Professor Patricia Gladu – TTH 8:30-9:45 a.m.
With our current world population over 7 billion and further increases predicted, even more people will have to be fed, clothed, and housed. How will we do this? Of the 300,000 known edible plants, 1500 have been used commercially and only 20 (highly modified by man) are of major economic importance. The way we grow, harvest and manipulate these plants to be more productive, to thrive in different climates, and to taste and look like we want — both from the perspective of scientific processes and also evolving global tastes and production networks — will be the discussed in this class. Students will be introduced to the variety of agricultural products they commonly see and the many parts of the world from which they come. Cultural practices of agriculture – both positive and negative – also will be discussed, debated, and deliberated. Assigned readings and in-class discussions will highlight such questions as: How does our desire for teak furniture affect the rainforests? How do humans modify plants and animals? Are they safe? To what extent can science, medicine, and industry use wild plants as a source for ingredients of new products?
GRW 101-31 Encounters: World Art
Professor Donald McColl – MWF 1:30-2:20 p.m.
On the heels of a new millennium, this class seeks to take stock of the relatively new and controversial field of world art history. Rather than attempt a geographical or chronological survey, we will focus on a number of case studies of “encounters” among peoples and objects from a wide variety of periods and places—from Alexander the Great’s fateful incursion into India, to Robert Peary’s bringing a small group of Inughuit (Inuit) people, including the young boy, Minik, to New York at the turn of the 20th century, and beyond. In addition to discussing shared readings in primary and secondary resources, we will hold debates, hone our presentation skills, write research and position papers, attend special events and take trips to major museums in Baltimore and Washington, DC, and perhaps even propose an exhibition for Washington College’s Kohl Gallery.
GRW 101-47 Race and Gender in Global Education
Professor Darnell Parker – TTH 2:30–3:45 p.m.
Are there connections between a student’s race or gender and that student’s educational experiences? Are students’ needs and interests related to their race or gender? Do students of different races and genders have different perceptions of education? Is a teacher’s race or gender related to how he or she teaches and interacts with students? This course will explore the roles that race and gender play in education from a global perspective. Students will have the opportunity to explore and engage in dialogue on how race and gender affect achievement, access to education, race and gender relations, and to reflect on their own personal educational experience. Students will be introduced to readings from Dr. Beverly Tatum, Audre Lorde, Susan Bailey and other scholars whose work focuses on race and gender in education. Students will be expected to articulate their positions on the readings and discussions during the course of the semester, and will conduct their own research comparing primary, secondary, or postsecondary educational systems in the United States and abroad in respect to race and/or gender.
GRW 101-52 Rich Countries, Poor Countries
Professor Soma Dasgupta – TTH 10:00-11:15 a.m.
Why are some countries rich while some others are poor? Economists and other social scientists have tried to answer this question since the late 18th Century. In this course, we will study the concepts of growth and development and their relationship with the well-being of a nation. We will also look at the importance of factors like geography, institutions, world integration, financial development, and governance, among others, in shaping cross-country income levels and growth. We will study the debates among social scientists on the relative contributions of each of these factors to economic development, and the roles these factors might play in closing cross-country income gaps. Students will work in pairs to conduct research on one country seeking greater economic development, and will present their findings to the class and in writing.
GRW 101-56 Reproducing Inequality Through Education
Professor Erin Anderson – MWF 1:30-2:20 p.m.
We often think of education as being the key to personal success, but not all educations are equal. Thus, not all students have the same life chances. In this class, students will study the causes and consequences of different educational experiences for students in the U.S. as well as those across the globe. These differences will be examined in relation to a variety of social problems such as economic inequality, violence, the environment, health crises, and various forms of discrimination. We will study how and why these issues exist, how policy influences education, and how “brain drain” and “brain gain” influence various countries. We will read, discuss, and research how the institution of education contributes to social problems as well as how it might more effectively help to solve social problems.
GRW 101-57 Forbidden Literature in the World
Professor Elena Deanda – MWF 10:30-11:20 a.m.
Curiosity drives our minds, and is also a greatest threat to our survival. Diverse types of knowledge have been forbidden by religious, moral, or legal authorities because they were considered dangerous, destructive, or unwelcome. This course delves into forbidden books across the globe in order to expose students to alternative ways of thinking and encountering the world. Its central question is “Are there things we should not know, read, or see?” and if so, who or what sets the limits? We will examine how some literary traditions and legal systems have tried to respond to these questions. We will read canonical texts that have been persecuted and forbidden (Dr. Seuss in China, The Satanic Verses in the Arab world, Howl or Lady Chatterley’s Lover in the US and UK). We will also approach them through the legal lenses, through the acts, laws, and trials that banned them. By reading, writing, and speaking we will delve into the ways in which different publics and countries have approached cultural texts and reacted. Thus students will both confront and confirm their own beliefs and positions with respect to them.
GRW 101-58 Ethics and Profit in Globalized Medicine
Professor James Lipchock – MWF 9:30-10:20 a.m.
Advances in modern medicine have led to more effective drugs and treatments, but the costs associated with these improvements can be prohibitive. As a result governments, insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies need to make choices about which diseases to target and when to ration healthcare. These economically based decisions have dramatic ethical consequences that separate the rich from the poor and first world countries from third world countries. Through readings, documentaries, writing assignments and class discussions, students will investigate the money pipeline from consumers and the government to universities, pharmaceutical companies and insurance companies and grapple with bioethical questions relating to the economic considerations of human life and which diseases are most important to cure. The process of designing, producing and marketing a drug, as well as the effectiveness and sustainability of healthcare models around the world will be discussed.
GRW 101-59 Exploration in the Age of Sail
Professor David Wharton – MW 2:30-3:45 p.m.
Ever since the first humans gazed across an ocean and wondered what was over the horizon, explorers have built ships, left the security of land, and set out on voyages in search of adventure and treasure. From Columbus’s journey across the Atlantic to Matt Rutherford’s 2011-2012 single-handed, non-stop circumnavigation of the Americas, we will study their ships, their navigation techniques, their life on board ship, and the impact they had on indigenous cultures. Along the way we will take a look at commercial sailing ships of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries and the pirates and privateers that plagued them. Readings will include ship’s logbooks, first- and second-hand accounts, sea shanties, and scholarly articles. In addition to class discussions and activities, quizzes, and short response papers, students will write a research paper and make a class presentation on a specific explorer or voyage.
GRW 101-60 Human Trafficking
Professor Ted Maris-Wolf – MWF 8:30-9:20 a.m.
Thousands of men, women, and children are trafficked into and within the United States each year, living as virtual slaves in cities and rural areas, including Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Why and how does this illegal commerce in people continue today and what relation, if any, does it have with other forms of trafficking in the past? Historically, how have students, scholars, and activists worked to end trafficking, and what is currently being done to stop it? This course seeks to explain human trafficking and modern-day slavery by examining their historical precedents (international and domestic slave trading and indentured or bonded labor) and the efforts of individuals to prevent trafficking and to emancipate its survivors over time and across the globe. Special attention will be given to past and present-day trafficking in Maryland and its international connections. Students will have the opportunity to meet scholars who examine aspects of human trafficking in the past and present, as well as a variety of experts on the topic—law enforcement personnel, activists, and survivors through guest visits and trips to Baltimore and/or Washington, DC. During the course of the semester, students will research an aspect of past or present-day human trafficking that particularly interests them and present their findings in class presentations and papers.
GRW 101 Sections Offered by Time Slot – Fall 2013
|Time Slot||Section No.||Title||Instructor|
|MWF 8:30||60||Human Trafficking||Prof. Maris-Wolf|
|MWF 9:30||58||Ethics & Profit in Globalized Medicine||Prof. Lipchock|
|MWF 10:30||57||Forbidden Literature in the World||Prof. Deanda|
|MWF 11:30||13||Global Theater||Profs. Volansky&Daigle|
|MWF 12:30||12||Islam and the Muslim-Christian Experience||Prof. Prud’homme|
|MWF 1:30||18||Encounters: World Art||Prof. McColl|
|MWF 1:30||56||Reproducing Inequality through Education||Prof. Anderson|
|MW 2:30||59||Exploration in the Age of the Sail||Prof. Wharton|
|TTH 8:30||25||Plants for People: Global and Local Impact||Prof. Gladu|
|TTH 10:00||52||Rich Countries, Poor Countries||Prof. Dasgupta|
|TTH 11:30||10||History of Freedom||Prof. Finnegan|
|TTH 1:00||11||Vikings: The Original Globetrotters||Prof. Markin|
|TTH 2:30||47||Race and Gender in Global Education||Prof. Parker|