SOC 295 - Topics in Sociology
Winter 2021, Section 002 - Pandemics: Social Dimensions of HIV and COVID-19
Instruction Mode: Section 002 is  Online (see other Sections below)
Subject: Sociology (SOC)
Department: LSA Sociology
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Requirements & Distribution:
Waitlist Capacity:
May be elected three times for credit. May be elected more than once in the same term.
Primary Instructor:


The remarkable transformation of HIV/AIDS from an inevitable death sentence to a manageable chronic illness in well-resourced countries like the United States is one of the most noteworthy scientific achievements of the past 40 years. Yet the rate of new HIV infections in the U.S. hovers stubbornly around 40,000 per year, and from its early stages, HIV has had a disproportionate impact on socially marginalized communities. We have now been introduced to a new pandemic, COVID-19, which is presenting some of the same medical challenges and tracking along some of the same vectors of inequity. In this course, we will explore how medical epidemics like HIV and COVID-19 also reflect manifestations of complex inequalities at the intersections of race, class, gender, and sexuality. Students will develop an in-depth understanding of the scope and dimensions of both pandemics domestically and globally and consider the role of social inequality in shaping its dynamics. We will also analyze how social movements, public policies, and cultural representations (art, media, public debate, etc) have played integral roles in our collective response to these pandemics.

Intended Audience:

This course welcomes entirely online participation.

Class Format:

Instruction Mode: As a DC (Distance due to COVID) course, all aspects of this course will be fully compatible with remote online learning.

Learning Mode: The weekly lectures for this course will be recorded and made available asynchronously every Monday. We will also have weekly discussion sessions each Wednesday that require synchronous participation.

Course Teaching/Assessment: Course assessment in the form of 2 Response Papers – 30% of total grade; Panel Presentation & Talking Points Memo - 15% of grade; Final Paper - 30% of total grade; Active Participation – 25% of total grade; Extra Credit will be available

Technology Platform: This course will use Canvas for course components (Monday asynchronous lectures; Wednesday discussions). Students should have access to a camera and microphone.


SOC 295 - Topics in Sociology
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
TuTh 1:00PM - 2:30PM
002 (LEC)
W 10:00AM - 11:30AM
003 (LEC)
MW 2:30PM - 4:00PM

Textbooks/Other Materials

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