First-Year Seminars, offered under the University Courses division in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, provide a unique small class educational experience to first-year students.
Seminars are offered by outstanding faculty and emeritus faculty from many different departments on a variety of topics. Each provides a group of approximately fifteen students with a stimulating introduction to the intellectual life of the University by exposing them to engaging subject matter and offering the opportunity for active participation that a small class will afford. It is hoped that students who take a seminar will find in it a sense of intellectual and social community that will make the transition to a large university easier. Some may discover a subject to pursue in further courses.
Seminars are open to all first-year students and should be elected along with other courses. Each will count toward satisfying the distribution requirements of the College in one of the three basic subject areas: Humanities (150), Social Sciences (151), Natural Sciences (152), or Introductory Composition (153).
Collegiate Seminars, offered under the University Course division (495) in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, provide a unique small class educational opportunity to students.
Seminars allow a student to personalize his or her education.
Each seminar is taught by a regular professorial faculty member.
Each is limited to approximately twenty students. Interaction
between student and teacher, made possible by the small size of the class, facilitates deeper learning and allows the student
to get to know a faculty member personally. Moreover, students
find that in seminars, they learn much from one another because
a learning community develops, and dialogue among students as
well as between student and teacher takes place. We strongly
recommend that each student take at least one seminar during the
four years at Michigan.
Collegiate Seminars are open to any student who has completed the Introductory Composition Requirement. The seminars emphasize critical thinking about important and central topics and feature further instruction in writing.
All Collegiate Seminars count toward satisfaction of the College's distribution requirements in one of the three basic subject areas: Humanities (250), Social Sciences (251), or Natural Sciences (252).
102(CCP 102). The Student in the University. 21st Century Program participant. (1). (Excl). Offered mandatory credit/no credit.
This course will provide students with an opportunity to critically review their role in the university. It will allow students to consider the expectations of their experience at the-university within a framework of theoretical perspectives. IT is hoped that students will develop a broad understanding of what their university experience can include and how they can shape it to realize their academic-potential and intellectual development. (If there is room – please add the following:) The course will focus on the transition from high school to college, role of the liberal arts, critical thinking, intergroup relations and social change. The issues and challenges of living and working in a multicultural society will be examined. This discussion will include a focus of student perceptions, relevant research and university resources. the large group will include presentations and the small discussion groups will focus on the readings and areas of practical concern. This course is open only to people in the 21st Century Program.
150. First-Year Humanities Seminar. First-year
standing; sophomores with permission of instructor. (3). (HU).
May be repeated for credit.
Section 001. Ethics- Moral Values and Behavior. The science of morality seeks intelligent, reliable judgment of behavior and is concerned with behavior that is approved or disapproved. Critical thought undertakes to put in order such specifics as just, saintly, honorable, courageous, intemperate, perverse, corrupting and ought under the general rubric of value. It is the purpose of this seminar to provide a learning experience through exploration of discussion of behavior, values and priorities to such questions as: ought we ever do what we want to do?, can we ever do what we want to do?, ought we ever do what we do not want to do? and ought we do what everyone else ought to do? Grading will be based on the quality, not the quantity of participation, class discussion, required papers and examinations. The required reading will include: Morality and the Moral Controversies, (3rd ed., 1993), Arthur, John, editor, Prentice-Hall, Inc., Angled Cliffs, N.J. 07632; and course pack. (Cash).
Section 003. Masterpieces of English Literature. This course attempts to sample the rich quality and variety of English literature. The reading list comprises a few master works chosen from across the centuries, exemplifying plays, novels, poems, and biographies. The emphasis is placed on reading and discussing individual works in some depth. The reading list includes The Tempest, selected poems by John Donne, Gulliver's Travels, Boswell's London Journal, Ode on the Intimations of Immortality, Emma, Vanity Fair, and Importance of Being Earnest. Since reading and writing are so closely linked there will be ample opportunity for short papers. At least one longer paper, and a final examination. (Steinhoff).
Section 004. Israeli Poetry, Between War and Peace. We shall read English translations of poetry written by Israeli poets in response to, or in the context of, the unique historical dimensions of the Holocaust; the 1948 War, the Israeli-Arab conflict and the attempts to resolve it by peace agreements. At the same time we shall seek to understand each poem as a unique artistic world which often transcends these circumstances, reaching to a universal audience. Though some of the themes Israeli poetry deals with are particularly related to the larger events which shaped Modern Jewish identity, especially in the twentieth century, we shall pay attention to a lyrical tradition which seeks to express universal human emotion. Among the poets whose works will be discussed are: Leah Goldberg, Natan Alterman, Dan Pagis, Yehuda Amichai, Haim Guri and others. All of the readings for this course are in English. There will be some discussion of theories and principles regarding the nature of poetry in general. There will be no exam. Students will submit several written responses to the poetry and one final paper. (Hertz).
Section 005. Visions of the Past. History is constructed for us in many forms, both verbal and visual, and works of the imagination, like a painting or a novel, provide most of us with most of the history we know. Many more Americans have read or seen Gone With the Wind than have perused a history of the Civil War; Emmanuel Leutze's Washington Crossing the Delaware has for generations fixed school-children's sense of the heroic general. This course will examine the various forms, from the traditional narrative to the TV documentary, with the aim of understanding their value and persuasiveness. Episodes in European and American history will provide the contexts. Thus, for example, we will read Arthur Miller's play about the Salem witchcraft trials, The Crucible, and then consider a recent feminist analysis of that tragic episode. Later we will read Martin Luther King's memoir of the Montgomery bus boycott and compare his memory of it with a recent documentary film. Ultimately in discussing how history is represented we will reach the question of why, and why each generation must write its own version. Some introductory commentary on texts and contexts will be provided, but discussion will be the primary way we handle the individual works. Several short papers (5 pp.), and participation in class discussion, will determine the grade. (Marwil).
Section 006. College: Intellectual Self-Realization. Each year students come to college for a variety of reasons. This course will be an examination of these reasons as they relate to one's own intellectual development. The thrust of this endeavor is to examine the pursuit of knowledge for the sake of itself in order to determine the cost-effectiveness of that knowledge. Our inquiry will be an attempt to answer the following question: Why are we here – in college, that is? We will begin our inquiry by examining LS&A as a paradigm of liberal arts education. We will investigate the nature of education in order to determine why liberal arts is "higher education." This quest will be founded on the Socratic dictum: "The unexamined life is not worth living." Therefore we will examine the life of the college student as an attempt to define one's goals in order to realize one's career ambition. In the process college will be explicated as an attempt to realize one's intellect in the fullest. The course format will be lecture/discussion with a heavy emphasis on discussion. Course requirements will entail three short essays and a midterm and final. Ultimately, our goal will be to celebrate the life of your mind as a developing dynamic. We will realize this by determining how LS&A fits into you, not how you fit into LS&A. (Knight).
Section 007. The Mystic Jesus. Who was Jesus really? A militant Jewish revolutionary? A celibate wandering philosopher? A self proclaimed Messiah? Or a Jewish mystic, a man who not only practiced ascent personally, but who also taught his followers the "Way" of ascent into heaven where they would be immortalized through their visionary encounter with God? In order to understand Jesus' mystic message and practices, we will explore the New Testament gospels and other early Christian literature including the newly discovered and acclaimed Gospel of Thomas, the Secret Gospel of Mark, the Dialogue of the Savior, the Secret Book of James, the Preachings of John, and the Gospel of Mary. We will search for the origins of this teaching by examining other persons in the Jewish tradition such as Moses and Enoch who were associated with ascent, and those Jewish groups involved in mystical practices including the Essenes of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Moreover, we will look at the rich materials from the Egyptian and Greek traditions which speak about ascent and "absorption into God." Evaluation will be based on several short writing assignments, in-class projects, and a take-home essay final. No prior knowledge required. But be prepared to think critically. (De Conick).
Section 008. Technology and the Good Life. Because of technology, life is certainly changing, but is it getting better? At first, the answer seems obvious. One hundred years ago there were no video games, fast food, TV, cars, recorded music, or birth control pills. What progress! But in 1894 there also wasn't so much concrete and so little wilderness, families lived closer together, the pace of life wasn't so stressful, and people weren't kept alive by machines when they were ready to die. What, progress? Broadly speaking, this seminar will examine the notion of technology as progress. What is a good life, and what if anything does technology have to do with it? We will do lifestyle experiments, keep journals, conduct interviews, read novels and interesting historical studies, and watch a few movies. There will be various writing exercises but no tests. (Reed-Maxfield).
Section 009. Theories of the Self. What is it to be a person? Is there an unchanging human nature? Are we products of our social circumstances? This course will examine some of the answers given to these and other questions. We will explore the evolution of the notion of the self in the Western philosophical tradition, consider some non-Western notions of the self, and look at contemporary critiques of some notion of the self. Students will also be encouraged to develop their own notion of the self. There will be lots of discussion and encouragement for students to notice how their thinking about themselves and others reflects various notions of the self. There will be two six to seven-page papers and a final exam. One paper will be the basis of a class presentation. (Crocker).
Section 010. Wrestling with Religion in the Nineteenth Century. The eighteenth-century Enlightenment tended to put down belief in metaphysical ideals like divinity. Indeed, one of those philosophers, the Baron d'Holbach, declared that if there is a God, then he must be a tyrant because even in the face of his cruel treatment, he required praise from his subjects. Ministers explain this irrational situation by maintaining that God's nature is a mystery to mortals, but still, d'Holbach slyly points out, they know enough to portray him as benevolent. We will read Voltaire's witty Candide to represent a characteristic point of view from the Enlightenment. Nineteenth-century writers tried to restore a sense of divine order in the universe against this onslaught of "rationalism." Schleiermacher's advocacy of sentiments as the truest foundation of religious faith, rather than ideas or principles, proved to be a major response to the challenge of atheism. Another came from Carlyle, whose Sartor Resartus – in elegant English prose – teases the reader into perceiving an absolute spiritual unity underlying the seeming meaninglessness of the world. Neitzsche's confident assertion that God is dead are two further readings in a course of rich intellectual fare and literary value. No more preparation is assumed than a mind eager to learn and to sharpen analytical skills. Among the requirements are several papers critically studying individual texts or problems. Some of these, after correction, will be rewritten and linked to form a discussion of term-paper length. (Hafter).
Section 011. Literary Treatments of Slavery and Servitude in English. This course will focus on the treatment of slavery and servitude as an image, idea, and social reality in English literary works ranging from Shakespeare to Toni Morrison. Despite this literary emphasis, other questions will certainly arise. Three of obvious importance are the following: what is the relationship between slavery and race?; what is the relationship between slavery, servitude, and gender?; why does the idea of slavery or servitude persist even after the social institutions themselves have disappeared? Questions of this sort will not be treated as tangential to the goals of the course. Rather, students will be encouraged to discuss such issues, read more widely in primary and secondary materials in order to broaden their understanding of the problems involved, and include their thoughts in written work. There will be two written assignments, and a final examination. A portion of the grade will be allotted for classroom participation. (Moffat).
Section 012. Introduction to the Canadian Novel. We will confront such questions as: What is Canadian fiction and why should we read it? Is it like American fiction? What does it tell us about our neighbors to the north – their customs, beliefs, and problems, their lives and loves? Does it tell us something about us, too? We will read and discuss six Canadian novels: Sinclair Ross, As For Me and My House (1941); Gabrielle Roy, The Tin Flute (1945, trans. 1947); Ethel Wilson, Hetty Dorval (1947); Patricia Blondal, A Candle to Light the Sun (1960); Timothy Findley, The Last of the Crazy People (1976); Margaret Laurence, The Diviners (1974). Students will give 2 oral reports on a relevant topic, write two or three short papers, and a term paper or final exam – or both. (Powers).
Section 013. Idea, Form, and Medium. The goal of this course is to help students understand the challenge and value of expressive form for the artist working in theater, motion pictures and literature. The course will have as its basis the theoretical assumption that "cinematic" structures (time and space manipulation, parallel development, montage, etc.) have served the modern storyteller well in the development of complex characters and engaging narratives. Taught as a lecture-discussion seminar, class materials will include the reading of fiction, the viewing of classic films, and the study of film theory and literary criticism. One exercise, for example, will involve the evolution of Christopher Isherwood's short story "Sally Bowles" to stage play (I Am a Camera) to film/musical Cabaret. Students will read Roddy Doyle's novel The Commitments and analyze the film adaptation by Alan Parker. Course grading will result from short written assignments and a term paper/oral report project. (Beaver).
Section 014. Jesus' Jewish Teachers. Jesus was a Jew; but what kind of Jew was he? The course aims to offer a reading of Jesus from within Judaism with emphasis on his formative background. First, the legacy of ancient Jewish thought will be presented by considering both canonical and non-canonical sources: the biblical and the Enochian tradition. Secondly, an overview will be given of the different varieties of Judaism in the first century, those to which Jesus was closer and those that he opposed. As a result, we will be able to locate the Jesus movement within first-century Judaism and to understand what Jesus owed to this pluralistic and creative environment as well as what he contributed to the development of Jewish thought. The focus will be on primary sources more than on secondary literature. Grades will be determined by active participation in the class, two written exams, and a final oral colloquium. (Boccaccini). NOTE: this is a late addition to the Time Schedule. The class will meet Mondays and Wednesdays from 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm (location to be determined). (Boccaccini)
151. First-Year Social Science Seminar. First-year
standing; sophomores with permission of instructor. (3). (SS).
May be repeated for credit.
Section 001. Current Issues in Sports Sociology. A seminar designed to analyze the behaviors and rituals that have traditionally characterized the institutionalization of sport in America; to provide opportunities to develop an understanding of the pervasiveness of sport and its influence on disparate societal elements. To review current issues in sport; to consider deviance, discrimination, religion, gender relations, education and politics in terms of sport as a social institution. Course evaluation will be based on two critiques, a research project relating to a current sport issue, class participation, a mid term and a final exam. (Vaughn).
Section 002. Public Education for Blacks and Other Minorities, 1863-1954: An Historical Perspective. The purpose of the seminar will be to trace the development of elementary, secondary, and post-secondary education of Blacks and minorities in the southern states of the United States from the Emancipation Proclamation to May 17, 1954. Particular emphasis will be focused on judicial litigations from the supreme court decision to Plessy vs. Ferguson, from which the doctrine of "separate but equal" evolved, to the historic Brown vs. Topeka, Kansas Board of Education 1954, which upheld the fundamental principle that racial discrimination in public education is unconstitutional. Of special importance will be seminar discussions revealing how Blacks and minorities were successful in achieving an education in spite of the barriers confronting them in the states where they resided and resulting from supreme court decisions, including the Supreme Court of the United States. Students will be expected to read a number of the classic writings of Black and minority authors such as W.E.B. DuBois, E. Franklin Frazier, Booker T. Washington, John Hope Franklin, and many others. The writings of contemporary Blacks and minorities will be explored as well as books about Blacks and minorities such as Gunnar Myrdal's An American Dilemma. Students will be expected to prepare readings, participate in seminar discussions, and develop a research topic preferably centered around one of the southern states under investigation in the seminar. (Palmer).
Section 003. Identity, Alienation, and Freedom. The purpose of this seminar will be to explore the concepts of identity, alienation and freedom as psychological and philosophical ideas. However, the orientation will be specific and applied to the normal situations and predicaments that college students experience. Questions to be considered: surviving as an individual in a large and often impersonal University; living up to and/or dealing with the expectations of parents and teachers; questioning authority in the context of the classroom; trading-off career pressures and personal goals in setting educational priorities. Of special importance will be the examination of the sometimes frightening loss of a sense of identity that accompanies significant alterations in life style, such as that experienced by students in the transition from high school to college or later, in the transition from college to the "real world." In addition to regular class meetings each student will meet individually with the instructor every third week at which time the student's individual reading and writing will be developed and discussed. Grades will be determined by the quantity and quality of this reading and writing. (Pachella).
Section 004. The Psychology of Social Movement. This course examines social movements through the lens of psychology. We read nine books, five on illuminative psychological principles and four accounts of 20th-century social movements or collective actions: the student movement of the 60s, the Chinese Cultural Revolution, a Nazi police battalion, and French village that worked together to rescue thousands of Jews. We analyze these events, asking questions like: Why did people join? Why did they behave as they did as part of these collectivities? What makes social movements go wrong – or right? The course uses the seminar format. Exams assess mastery of the psychological material. Discussion is based on daily written analyses of the readings. In a final integrative paper students analyze either a personal experience in a social movement or group, or a historical social movement. Grades are based on exams, daily seminar papers, and the integrative analysis. (Landman).
Section 005. Making Meanings: Why and How Humans Do It. This seminar will examine interpretation and communication from the viewpoint of semiotics. Semiotics is a field that studies why and how humans use "signs" to make sense of, and share thoughts about, life. Signs are things (words and pictures, for example, but also gestures, clothing, possessions, and so on) with which people create meanings – with which they define their worlds, convey their experiences, form and express their identities, preserve their past, imagine their future, and direct their behavior. The seminar will be interdisciplinary and cross-cultural in approach. Class discussions and readings will 1) introduce various biological, psychological, and sociological perspectives on sign-use, and 2) illustrate sign-use with cases drawn from the domains of language, adornment, food, property, ritual, architecture, the arts, myth, politics, and advertising, to name but a few. Requirements include a class presentation and research paper. (Pollack).
Section 006. People without Agriculture: The Ethnography and Archaeology of Hunters and Gatherers. This seminar introduces students to the fascinating world of hunters and gatherers, contemporary and prehistoric peoples living entirely without agriculture or domestic animals. For most of the five million years of human existence, people obtained their food entirely by hunting, fishing, and gathering wild plant foods. Some foraging groups, such as the Bushmen in southern Africa, continued this way of life well into the 20th century. It is only in the last 10,000 years that a few populations of hunters and gatherers in the Near East, China, Mesoamerica, Peru, and eastern North America began to domesticate plants and animals, initiating a process that radically transformed the hunting and gathering way of life and set the stage for the way most of us live today. In the seminar, we will explore the economy, social organization, and religion of contemporary hunter-gatherers, such as the Eskimos, Pygmies, Bushmen, and Australian Aborigines. We will then use this knowledge to help us understand the origins of agriculture and the beginnings of settled village life. Seminar Requirements: Students will read and discuss ethnographic accounts of several of the world's best known hunters and gatherers. Readings will also cover specific topics such as the nature of hunter-gatherer subsistence, mobility, and demography, as well as the events and processes in prehistory that led to the origins of agriculture. Brief written synopsis of the assigned readings will be required each week. Students will also be assigned the responsibility for leading weekly discussions. A research paper of modest length, to be turned in at the end of the term, is required of each seminar participant. (Speth).
Section 007. Introduction to Quantitative Social Research. The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the basic concepts and skills of quantitative research in social science. It is not meant to be another statistical course: its central aim is to develop interest toward empirical research by focusing more on application of statistical methods and substantive interpretation of statistical results than on statistical theory. Statistical concepts will be introduced as much as possible without mathematical representation. The students will have a chance to analyze a real data set: the 1992 American Presidential Election Study Survey data collected by the Center for Political Studies of the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan. The participants will experience the actual steps of empirical research while they will test their own theories about human political behavior. The course grade will be based on the weekly assignments and one individual research paper. (Nishizawa).
Section 008. New Challenges for U.S. Foreign Policy. The dramatic ending of the Cold War presented makers of U.S. foreign policy with a new array of intractable problems. In fact, the dissolution of the Soviet Union and empire restoked smoldering ethnic, racial, religious and cultural antagonisms far beyond the area of Soviet hegemony at a time when other critical issues for U.S. diplomacy – the spread of nuclear weapons capability to Third World countries, the traffic in drugs and weapons of mass destruction, the trade gap with Japan, the impact of the European Community's economic union, uncontrolled immigration from Latin America – were intensifying. This seminar will examine as many of these challenges as time permits and students will impersonate the State Department's Policy Planning unit and National Security Council staff for purposes of oral presentation, class discussion and the writing of "action" papers for the President and the Secretary of State. But we will begin with the policy-making process: how decisions are made and who the players are in addition to the President and the Secretary; the roles of the National Security Council, the Defense and other Cabinet departments; the CIA and other intelligence units; Congress, business, labor and citizen groups; domestic and foreign lobbies. We will study the constraints on the use of U.S. power – political, economic and military – imposed by the practice of allied and United Nations diplomacy, American history, traditions and more. Course requirements include a typed report on a relevant book and a take-home final in the form of a comprehensive long-term policy recommendation on a major foreign-policy issue. A package of selected reading will be assigned in lieu of a textbook. (Hovey).
Section 009. Public Policy and Science. This course aims to help students become better consumers of scientific research so that they will become better informed citizens and more effective makers and implementers of public policy in the future. The class will consider the general nature of science, public problems, and public policy, and their relationships. Questions will be raised about the reliability and validity of scientific findings, their relevance to public problems, and their implications for personal and societal values. Students will formulate public policy on specific problems of interest to them by consulting the literature and local experts. The class will hear and discuss presentations by the instructor, guests, and students. Evaluations of students' performance will be based on three short essays, take-home exams and a 15-20 page final project. (Gold).
Section 010. The West in Asia. This is an exploration of the interaction between an expanding West and traditional Asian states and cultures. European and later American efforts to establish trade with a far richer and more sophisticated Asia led to colonial regimes which came to dominate most of Asia, but these in turn stimulated the rise of Asian nationalism and the eventual defeat of colonialism, as well as profoundly influencing the nature of modern Asian societies. Asia is taken here to extend from the Indian subcontinent through Southeast Asia and China to Korea and Japan. The course begins with the circumstances which underlay late medieval Europe's exploration and expansion overseas, of which the first Asian venture was Vasco daGama's voyage to India in 1498, and then deals with the rise of Western colonial regimes and semi-colonial orders (in China and Japan), and ends with the opening of the Pacific War at Pearl Harbor in 1941, which marked the end of Western colonialism in Asia. This course is run on a discussion basis, with ample opportunity for student input. There are four short essay-style papers, and a highly varied set of readings. (Murphey).
152. First-Year Natural Science Seminar. First-year
standing; sophomores with permission of instructor. (3). (NS).
May be repeated for credit.
Section 001. Ocean Resources: Promises and Problems. Oceanography provides a good introduction to science, scientific thinking, and the unity of scientific knowledge. Study of the resources of the oceans combines elements of biology, chemistry, geology, physics, and engineering with complex social and economic problems. This course will address a number of equivocal issues facing ocean scientists and makers of marine policies. Students will be asked to examine critically some of the conflicting demands being placed on the oceans by today's societies. Some examples are the conflicts that emerge from protection of natural beaches and wetlands as opposed to the economic benefits of coastal developments such as marinas and harbors and from protection of endangered species as opposed to the undeniable need for more food for more people. Other questions we will discuss will include: Why hasn't the U.S. ratified the Law of the Sea treaty? Should ocean dumping be outlawed? How badly has humanity impacted the marine environment? Why save the whales? Each student will select one of the weekly topics and lead class discussions on this topic. A major whole-class topic will involve all students. Two written papers and one written exam will be required. (Meyers).
Section 002. The Human Body in Sickness and Health. How would you define health? How would you describe your own body and how it functions? This course asks you to explore the answers to questions like these for yourself, and also look at answers to these questions provided by biology. We will compare and contrast our own answers and those provided by readings from other disciplines. The intent of the course is to explore different constructions of the body – biological, social, personal – so that at the end of the term we will respond to these questions again with a deeper, and revised, understanding of our personal constructions of health and the body. We will explore "myths" and "facts" in the constructions of the human body and the intersection of belief with these constructions. The biology of the human body is presented as a framework for this exploration. Topics covered will include: images of the body, in advertising and in language; reductionism versus holism; psychosocial problems such as anorexia/bulimia and AIDS and reproductive behavior; asymmetries of health care, race, class, and gender issues as related to health. The format will be primarily interactive with discussion, small group exercises and mini-lectures. Emphasis will be on writing to learn. As students, you will be expected to keep a journal in which you reflect on your class experience and learning. Four short papers will be required biweekly, with one longer paper during the semester. (Gates).
Section 003. Genes and Behavior. In this course we will address the role of the genetic makeup of animals in explaining the behavior patterns they show. No specific background is required. The nature of genes and the complex ways behavior develops will be discussed and the possible links between genotype and behavior analyzed. Methods of studying this link will be critically examined and both human and non-human case studies investigated. The transformation of research finding to the popular press will be studied. The course will be a combination of (a few) lectures, presentations, essays and discussions of readings. Readings will be from the popular press, review articles, and the primary scientific literature. Grades will be based upon participation in discussions, individual and group presentations, and essays written. (Hazlett).
Section 004. Natural Resources: Rights and Responsibilities. Natural means occurring in the world/universe but not made by people. Resource means help meet some human need or desire. Virtually everything in the world is potentially a resource for people. Especially vital for human well-being is the natural state of the world, which enables us to live. This includes an appropriate temperature; a breathable atmosphere; protection from harmful radiation; clean water to drink; plants to provide food; sun, water, soil, and warmth for plants to grow; and, more recently in human history, stuff to make things from and energy to make things work. In this seminar we will ask: How did/do these resources come into being? Who does use/consume/destroy them for what end? What are the consequences for human well-being of their use/consumption/destruction? What could a responsible society do to promote desirable consequences and avoid undesirable ones? and What are the psychological, social, political, blocks that prevent us from doing these things? Students will approach these questions in three ways: quantitative data and concepts; quantitative models; and scientific, psychological, social, and political argument. Students will read some assigned readings, forage for data, practice quantitative exercises, participate in class discussion, and write essays. (Estabrook).
Section 005. Cosmology. Physical science has been called the most successful of mankind's enterprises. This seminar will attempt to reveal what physical scientists believe to be the "true nature" of the Universe, and why they think so. Students will be helped to look closely at how the physical scientist thinks, visualizes things such as quanta, quarks, and quasars, and decides what is "true" and what is not. We start with an overview of contemporary science's view of the cosmos – space, time, gravity, expansion of the Universe, and quantum weirdness. Then we will discuss scientific methodology and talk about scientific process and philosophy relevant to these modern scientific concepts. We will then introduce (non-mathematically) two separate theories that individually provide incomplete descriptions of nature – relativity and quantum mechanics, and describe some of the views of nature they offer. Students will be guided to think about whether this description of the make-up of the Universe actually describes reality or whether it is just a scientific convenience. Finally, we will summarize current astronomical observations about the structure of the Universe and find how they lead to the belief there was a beginning. Seminar meetings will emphasize student discussion of reading material. From time to time there will be a short quiz or a one-page paper written in class. We will read two complete books – Hawking's A Brief History of Time and Davies and Gribben's The Matter Myth – and excerpts from seven others. There will be a midterm and final examination, both of essay type, and a required term paper on a topic chosen by the student. (Teske).
153. First-Year Seminar. First-year standing;
sophomores with permission of instructor. (4). (Introductory Composition).
May be repeated for credit.
Section 001. Ancient Narratives and the Study of Storytelling. This course will introduce basic categories and methods for studying storytelling through readings in three ancient narrative traditions: Greek epic, Sanskrit epic, and the Hebrew Bible. We will read the Odyssey; Genesis, Exodus, Judges, and Samuel; and selections from the Mahabharata (all in English translation), using concepts such as the distinction between fabula (what happens) and sujet (how it is told) to look at how these narratives evoke responses from their readers. We will also study point of view, the treatment of time, implied authors and audiences, and why narrative information is given or withheld. We will also look at the special features of narratives like these, which are written versions of varying oral traditions, and whether readers understand sacred narratives differently from ordinary stories. Throughout, the emphasis will be not on deciding what these narratives mean, but on how narratives and their readers co-operate to create meaning. Writing: In five exercises (1-2 pages), students will re-write pieces of the readings, changing one of structuring elements (for example, making the narrator more or less intrusive, changing the focalization, elimination narrative gaps). There will also be three short papers (4-5 pages) in which students will treat such issues analytically (these may be commentaries on their own or other students' rewritings). Two of these will be presented to the group and revised after discussion. There will also be a slightly longer final paper (7-10 pages). Evaluation will be based on the papers and on class participation. (Scodel).
Section 002. Socrates and Democracy. Who was that "strange" man in the late fifth-century BCE Athens who claimed "the unexamined life is not worth living by a human being"? How, according to this teacher and moral philosopher, should one lead one's life? What is his "Socratic" method? Why was this man put to death by the Athenian democracy? Was his death political? What was the relationship between Socrates and the democracy of Athens? What were the charges brought against Socrates? Why, after he was found guilty and imprisoned, did he refuse to attempt an escape? These and related questions will form the focus of our seminar as we search for the historical Socrates and his world by reading, discussion, and writing about both ancient primary sources in translation (Aristophanes' comic play The Clouds and Xenophon's Memorabilia (Conversations with Socrates) as well as several of Plato's earlier Socratic Dialogues) and at least one contemporary secondary source (the 1988 bestseller, The Trial of Socrates, by the retired American political journalist I.F. Stone who taught himself ancient Greek in retirement and produced this book). Since this seminar meets the Introductory Composition requirement, you can expect to write occasional impromptu essays or informal exercises as well as five or six formal papers (beginning with one or two pages and moving up to six or eight pages). We will give attention to drafts and to revision of the formal essays. You should expect, however, to write a total of at least two dozen original pages. (Wallin).
Section 003. Gibbon and the Decline of the Roman Empire. Edward Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire remains one of the great works of history in the English language. As such, it invites study both for its own sake and as a persistently powerful interpretation of Roman history and the nature of the empire. The purpose of this class is to examine Gibbon the historian, his self-conscious creation of the image of the ideal historian in his highly literary autobiography, and then to examine the historian at work. We will look at the way that Gibbon constructed his narrative, the difficulties he had with his sources, and the problem of folding different topics into a narrative framework. We will also look at some of the controversy that his history generated with the publication of volume 1 in 1776. In the end, we will try to control three topics: Gibbon's construction of history, the quality of his history as an account of the decline of the Roman empire (it is still regarded as one of the most penetrating ever written), and Gibbon's place in his intellectual world. There will be two short papers, a longer paper based on an oral presentation, and three short in-class writing exercises. (Potter).
Section 004. Television Text Analysis and Viewer Response Studies: Research, Interpretation, and Criticism. This writing-intensive seminar effectively introduces students to both quantitative and qualitative aspects of basic research. The starting point of academic analysis of television content must be with close attention to what actually is there on the screen. In this seminar, every student learns to formulate a precise content research question, hypothesize about what is likely to be found, develop an appropriate content coding procedure and coding chart, conduct the research, summarize findings in charts and collect appropriate quotes, interpret results and reconsider the original hypotheses, speculate about possible effects of the content studied upon viewers, and suggest further needed research. In this systematic research process, which is undertaken with 4 or 5 different genres of television content, students learn to present findings to the class and write research reports and lead discussions of classmates. In addition, students also undertake a viewer research project, developing questionnaires and interpreting results.. This course seeks to reverse practices of totalizing or generalizing about television, as though all encounters with the text were the same, or as though all viewers' responses were somehow similar. Instead, students undertake complex analyses of direct and symbolic references, consider social context and frames of reference, and become alert to the variety and vitality of audience engagements with the text. Students investigate crucial distinctions among text types and, in doing so, learn to decipher dimensions of intentionality that are represented in various features of the content: character type, level of language, uses of music and edits, visual perspectives, metaphoric associations, and so on. Readings in the course pack lead students toward an understanding of the theories of communication and cultural studies that assist in an unpacking of layers of meanings that necessarily meet with differing responses, depending upon the point-of-view of the particular viewer. Readings include the work of Roland Barthes, Christopher Lasch, Fiske and Hartley, Campbell and Reeves, Morris, Bummet and Duncan, Geerty, Allen, Dewey, Carey, among others. Writing includes: proposals for research, multiple-draft essays, viewing journals, logs, coding charts, summary abstracts of research distributed during classroom oral presentations. Please Note: this is a late addition to the Time Schedule. The class will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4-6 pm. (Morris).
170/American Culture 170/History 170/Women's Studies 210. Histories of "Witchcraft." First-year students only. (4). (Introductory Composition).
See American Culture 170. (Du Puis)
172/Asian Studies 111/History 151. South Asian Civilization. (4). (HU).
See History 151. (Dirks)
173/Slavic 225. Arts and Cultures of Central Europe. (3). (HU).
See Slavic 225.
174/Russian 231. Russian Culture and Society: An Introduction. (3). (HU).
See Russian 231. (Bartlett)
210. Perspectives on Careers in Medicine and Health Care. (4). (Excl).
This course is for students considering a career in the health professions. It is designed to help them acquire perspectives to facilitate their decision-making process. Health care professionals visit the class and share their educational and professional experiences. Students become acquainted with the prerequisites for professional and graduate schools and spend time with dental, medical, osteopathic, nursing, and public health students. We consider problems facing the health professions in the 90s: problems of health care delivery, the high cost of medicine and its effect on the uninsured and underinsured. We discuss issues relating to malpractice and death and dying. Students are expected to respond in writing and in class to the visitors, to the reading materials, and to films. Two course packs serve as the required texts. All students are responsible for taking definite steps toward the development of their own goals through a self-inventory of their values, skills, and interests and through a term paper exploring a possible career direction. Evaluation is based on class attendance and participation in and completion of all assignments. The class meets Mon. 3-5, 432 West Engineering; Thurs. 7-9:30 p.m. at 2130 Dorset Rd., Ann Arbor. A map showing the location of 2130 Dorset Rd. will be available at 1017 Angell Hall. Cost: 2 WL:5 Enrollment by override only: contact Fran Zorn at 1017-H Angell Hall (763-2062) or call 662-0682 and leave a message. (Zorn)
250. Collegiate Seminars. Open to any
student who has completed the introductory composition requirement.
(3). (HU). May be repeated for credit.
Section 001. How to `Read' a Play. This seminar will investigate the problems of reading a text that has been essentially designed for production in a performing arts medium. In doing so, the class will make use of a variety of media for which plays have been written: film, video, radio, as well as the live stage and more recent instances of "performance art." Questions of genre will be discussed as they relate to considerations of tone, mood, and style, as well as to the more practical issues of acting, directing, and design. Focus will be placed on the relationship between the literary and the performative, although questions of theory and practice will everywhere arise. This class will also discuss what happens to a "text" when it is adapted from one medium into another. Texts for this course will include, among other material, Shakespeare's Hamlet, Beckett's Waiting for Godot as well as his work for the mechanical media, Sam Shepard's True West, Pinter's The Homecoming, Caryl Churchill's Cloud Nine, David Hare's Wetherby, Mike Leigh's Life Is Sweet, and selected works by Maria Irene Fornes, Karen Finley, Laurie Anderson, Spalding Gray, Robert Wilson, and Ingmar Bergman. Students will be encouraged to take an active part in the seminar by preparing material for each weekly meeting, some of which might be, on occasion, their own original material written for the different media this class will consider. (Brater).
Section 002. Magic, Religion and the Bible. What role does "magic" play in modern religious life? How has the Bible impacted modern views of magic and magic's relation to religion? As a means for exploring these and related questions, this seminar will offer the student the opportunity to engage in a series of studies on magic in ancient Israelite society. Seminar participants will read relevant passages from the English Bible, examine texts (in translation) and artifacts reflective of the broader ancient Near Eastern and ancient Mediterranean magical traditions (Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Anatolian, Syro-Palestinian, Jewish, Christian, and Greek), and survey various modern social scientific approaches to the study of magic. Students will investigate such issues and topics as the definition of magic, the vocabulary of magic, magic as a ritual complex, magic's relation to science and religion, the anthropology of magic, and the impact of ideology and cultural bias, or the insider-outsider perspective, on the images of magic rendered by both ancient author and modern interpreter alike. The rational for offering a course on magic and the Bible abides in the veracity of two propositions: (1) magic embodies a society's expression of its self-identity, and (2), like science and religion, magic has functioned for investigators as a general analytical category for the comparative study of cultures. (Schmidt).
Section 003. In Search of Self-Identity in Medieval Romances. The main topic of this course is youth's uncertainty about one's life and destiny. This issue is raised in a considerable number of literary works of the Middle Ages. The protagonists struggle with doubt, face conflict, make decisions, and find happiness, misfortune or tragedy. In tracing the theme of search for self-identity the class will study works from the 10th to the 13th century. The earliest examples will be Christian legend and sacred drama. Texts of the 11th century are Europe's first animal epic and the first knightly romance. While in spiritual literature the theme appears in rather rudimentary form, it becomes more complex in works of a worldly character. It is the clearly secular literature of the 12th and 13th centuries that further develops the concept of search and contains elaborate forms of the theme. An attempt at elaboration is seen in pre-courtly historicizing romance which provides cases of father-son conflict and quest for self-realization in the fantastic Orient. The fully developed theme comes with stories, Arthurian and non-Arthurian, of around 1200 and later. The main body of investigation consists of romances in which the important constituent motifs of the search are namelessness, growing up without parents, feelings of guilt and shame, efforts to redeem oneself, risk of one's life for people in need and for justice, generation-gap, rebellion against and search for one's god. Texts: Course pack and Wolfram van Eschenbach's Parzival (Vintage, V-188). Besides reading the texts each student will write several short papers, give an oral presentation, and write a midterm and a final exam. There are no prerequisites. (Scholler).
251. Collegiate Seminars. Open to any
student who has completed the introductory composition requirement.
(3). (SS). May be repeated for credit.
Section 001. Identity: Self, Community, and Power. Students will ask how individuals, across a lifetime, construct a self, absorbing and rejecting elements of the social context. Students will look at particular crucibles: the relation of the individual to the power of the state; the relation of the individual in a stigmatized group to her own culture and to the majority culture; the issue of identity in the successive stages of women's lives; the issue of identity in the corporate organization; the prerequisites for liberation from abusive relationships. Students will read fieldwork, essays, and novels; do independent field work; and write every week. The instructor will introduce material from his current research with members and leaders of white racist groups. The course calls for a student who has imagination, takes her own life seriously, has sober interest in the social and political world, wishes to stretch herself, and likes adventure. (Ezekiel).
Section 002. Psychology of Stereotypes. Stereotypes play an important role in social interaction. That is, most people have at least tentative expectations concerning such matters as the attitudes, interests and abilities of different types (or categories) of people; e.g. women, professors, Jews, Mexicans, etc. Moreover, these expectations are often influential in affecting the way we respond to individual members of different social groups. Discussions of stereotypes often stress their dysfunctional character, but do not provide a systematic account of how they originate and how they function. In this seminar, we will examine classic and contemporary explorations of the stereotype concept, with an emphasis on the social, motivational, and cognitive bases of the stereotype process. We will discuss this literature as it relates to existing theories and research on attitude formation and attitude change. (Manis).
252. Collegiate Seminars. Open to any
student who has completed the introductory composition requirement.
(3). (NS). May be repeated for credit.
Section 001. Food Ways of Humanity: Plant Ecology and Bionutrition. Most plant food we eat is a result of plant domestication by prehistoric people some 10,000 years ago. In the Old World the separate areas of plant domestication became less distinct as people introduced or exchanged food plants across Eurasia and Africa. In the New World plant domestication was independent and remained separate from Old World dietary patterns until Columbus and European adventurers returned home with new domesticates and eventually brought them around the world. Early colonists then introduced Eurasian plants to the western hemisphere. The seminar will explore the food plants we eat, their original ecology, pathways to domestication and later culture history in order to understand their contribution to the meals we eat today. Cultural factors of taste, texture, preparation, and color will be considered to appreciate acceptance or rejection of foods in other cultures; ecology will determine present plant food production; bionutrition will help us to understand the meals of humankind. (Ford).
Section 002. Ecological Limits on Development. The course explores the relationship between a region's environmental setting and its prospects for economic development. Through readings and discussion, the errors of the past and perspectives for the future are explored, with an emphasis on development problems in the Third World and the special ecological forces operative there. Readings are drawn from environmental sciences, economics, political science, history, and the popular press. Note: Permission of instructor required. (Vandermeer).
Section 003. Pattern Formation in Nature. This laboratory course consists of a series of experiments designed to help students gain an appreciation for the beauty and complexity of nature while building some powerful observational and critical thinking skills. The four experiments – Bead Patterns, Granular Flow, snowflakes and fractals, and fluid swirls – will introduce phenomena and concepts at the forefront of current physics research, while completely avoiding cumbersome jargon and scientific "facts." These fun experiments only use simple setups and familiar materials but are designed so that students can also pursue their own special explorations into nature's behavior. Experimental results will be written up in separate laboratory reports which will determine the course grade. No exams on the covered material will be required. This course is an exercise in learning how to perform REAL SCIENCE in a very natural way. Please Note: this is a late addition to the Time Schedule. The class will meet Wednesdays, 2:00-5:00 PM. (Bretz).
280. Undergraduate Research-A (Grade). First or second year standing, and permission of instructor. (1-4). (Excl). (EXPERIENTIAL). A maximum of 8 credits of 280 and 281 may be counted toward graduation.
This course provides academic credit for students engaged in research through the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP). To receive credit, the student must be working on a research project under the supervision of a University of Michigan faculty member. Students may elect the course for 1-4 hours of credit. For each hour of credit, it is expected that the student will work three hours per week. The grade for the course will be based on a final project report evaluated by the faculty sponsor and on participation in other required UROP sponsored activities, including bi-monthly research group meetings, and submission of a journal chronicling the research experience. Students will receive a letter grade for this course. This course is open only to students enrolled in the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program.
441/Poli. Sci. 362. Global Interdependence. Upperclass standing. (3). (Excl).
See Political Science 362. (Pahre)
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