Political Fact, Fiction, and Deception (MOD2164.02)

Ron Cohen and Mansour Farhang

Evidence seems to suggest that more people in Western societies are employed in collecting and distributing information than any other occupation. This evolving reality impacts virtually all aspects of human existence, from interpersonal to international. Effect on economic efficiency and productivity, as well as on demystification of socio-cultural taboos, are generally recognized and appreciated, but its  impact on political power and authority is a matter of serious debate across the world.

The course focuses on how individuals and organizations determine the accuracy and authenticity of the information they receive. How can they protect their privacy? How can they recognize and respond to fake news or misinformation? Individuals, organizations and nation-states are both shaping and having to adapt to these changes  in our existential and sociopolitical circumstances. As individuals, we need to elevate our intellectual skills to face the unprecedented challenges of our times.  We need to go beyond conventional or habitual meaning of reasoning, judging and choosing; and it is the task of education to prepare us for this objective.

Required readings for the course consider cultivation of cognitive skills such as
assessing information for credibility, searching for concepts to comprehend new situation and self-critique one’s own habitual perceptions as central guidelines in pursuing personal, professional and societal goals.

Prerequisites: None.
Credits: 1
M 4:10pm - 6:00pm; Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm (October 2, 5, 9, 12, 16, 19)
Maximum Enrollment: 20
This course is categorized as 2000, Advancement of Public Action, All courses, Mansour Farhang, Modules: Transferable Approaches, Monday and/or Thursday Afternoons, One Credit, Ronald Cohen, Three Week, and tagged .