Honors Program Classes

Fall 2016 Classes

HON 3950: The Morality of Capitalism (David Kendall)

This course explores the meaning and essence of morality, the theory and practice of capitalism, and the question of whether capitalism is or can be a moral system of human interaction, as people go about the day-to-day business of confronting The Economic Problem.  Topics of study include ethical philosophy, capitalism, socialism, theories of private and public property, and the interaction of political and market institutions.

Tues./Thur. 12:30-1:45


HON 3951: Eat Your Words! Food in Global Literature and Film (Jennifer Holm)

Cuisine is one of the first and most accessible entry points to understanding another culture.  Food and meals unite people the world over and bring them together.  Yet, food can also be a divisive force – consider food ethics and taboos, food access, and who is invited to the table.  In this course, students will engage with representations of food and eating in global literature and cinema to examine and understand similarities and differences in food customs.  Students will address a number of questions in this course including:  What is food/cuisine/gastronomy?  What is the relationship between food and culture and how does that relationship shift in narratives from the American South, the Caribbean, France, Mexico, India, and Taiwan?  How is cuisine mobilized as a political or social tool?  How do different cultures conceive of the relationship between gender and food?  How can food influence our identity? How can food be both destructive and a source of comfort?

Tues./Thur. 9:30-10:45


HON 3952: Global History through Film (Mark Clark)

This course uses film in combination with traditional texts to introduce provocative questions about some of the main themes in contemporary global history.  It is neither about film criticism nor narrowly about film as a medium.  Instead, it uses film to explore the relationship between modernity and the wider culture in the twentieth century, particularly the changing relationship of individuals to state and society, and attitudes about ethnicity, class, and gender. We will thus treat feature films shown in class as documents helping us to examine history. What kind of historical evidence do films provide, and how reliable is it in each film? How have the filmmakers manipulated the evidence to emphasize a particular interpretation, and is this less reliable than written texts? As a historical record, what are each film’s weaknesses and strengths?

Mon. 6:00-8:45