Archives

Fashion and Modernism (VA4129.01)

“Let There Be Fashion, Down With Art” –Max Ernst

The rise of capitalism and the Industrial Revolution led to radical shifts in politics and art in the late 19th century. Fashion acts as a powerful analogue to and forecaster of Modernism. Artists such as Henri Matisse, Leon Bakst, Sonia Delaunay and Salvador Dali took note of fashion’s nascent agency and created clothing as a means of engaging the new political, social and cultural landscapes of the 20th Century. Influenced by Charles Baudelaire’s radical questioning of beauty and fashion, artists attempted to define fashion’s role in culture, manipulating it to reflect their own proclivities. This course will introduce and reconsider various movements such as Cubism, Fauvism, Futurism, Constructivism, Dada, and Surrealism through the lens of fashion, investigating the various agendas and ideologies deployed. Students will create artworks that engage the political spectrum as it intersects with Modernism’s aesthetic partisanship, including the creation of original garments. While this is a studio course, there will be weekly reading assignments and discussion as well as critiques. Students may work in a variety of media, including painting, drawing, photography, sculpture, video, or costume design. A high degree of motivation is expected. 

Intermediate Violin/Viola (MIN4232.01)

Basic techniques will include the reading music in treble and /or alto cleft in basic keys. Hand position including left-hand sifting and fingering will be shown, and a rudimentary facility with the bow will be developed in order for students to participate in simple ensemble performances by the end of the term.

Corequisites: must participate and perform at least twice in Music Workshop (Tu. 6:30pm ~8pm)

Beginning Violin/Viola (MIN2241.01)

Basic techniques will include the reading of music in either treble/or alto clefs in the easy keys. Basic hand positions and appropriate fingerings will be shown, and a rudimentary facility with the bow will be developed in order that all students may participate in simple ensemble performance by the end of the term. The student must arrange for the use of a college instrument if needed (contact Music Coordinator, ext. #4519).

Corequisites: Participation Music Workshop T 6:30-8:00

Senior Projects (MPF4226.01)

This course will serve as a forum for technical planning and feedback for seniors scheduling a musical show or installation in Spring 2020. The majority of work for any senior show will be expected to be composed and/or collected by the beginning of the term. Students will be required to pick an advisor from appropriate music faculty to advise their particular projects as they develop. The course will introduce students to the challenges of sound design, drama, and visuals within a multi-disciplinary college community, and in creating successful collaborations, rehearsals, and techs.

Piano Lab II (MIN4236.01)

The goals of this course are to gain ease and dexterity at the keyboard, developing a confident piano technique and the skill of reading musical notation. Students will expand upon the skills learned in Piano lab I, adding to a basic repertoire of scales and chords, use them in improvisation and harmonization of melodies. In addition they will explore a repertoire that utilizes the musical components covered and learn to perform selected compositions.

Movement Practice: Beginning-Intermediate Dance Technique (DAN2119.01)

In this basic intermediate dance course, students are introduced to some fundamental principles of dancing by learning various movement patterns. The class also introduces the use of breath and somatic practices, which reflect some principles of Zen and Japanese somatic practices such as butoh and Water Body Movement (or Noguchi Taiso).  Attention will be given to cultivating and sharpening each student’s awareness of time, space and energy, in order to understand and maximize the individual’s unique physical impulses and expressions.  At the same time, we will be disciplining the body to move rhythmically and precisely with clear intentions and awareness.

Bennington County Choral Society – Mahler Symphony No. 8 (MPF2164.01)

The Bennington County Choral Society, a community chorus conducted by Cailin Marcel Manson, promotes choral singing by presenting several concerts per year, and eagerly invites student participation. Auditions are not required, and singers of all levels and abilities are welcomed. To receive credit, students must attend all rehearsals and performances. Performances may be held at various locations in Bennington, and transportation may need to be arranged. Contact Kerry Ryer-Parke for more information.

The Musical “Other”: Exoticism, Appropriation, and Multiculturalism (MHI2116.01)

How has the cultural “Other” been represented in Western music? How can composers and performers create with a clear conscience and use source material ethically? We will examine a large repertory of works from the early Baroque period through the Twenty-first century, investigating the uses and abuses of non-Western musical sources. Beyond the classics, we’ll talk about mid-century exotica music, gaming, World’s Fairs, the Eurovision song contest, Hollywood soundtracks, Broadway musicals, pop music, and jazz. We will discuss the World Music industry, crate diggers and sampling, reissues of “lost” world music on vinyl, and contemporary ways of consuming and listening to music. We’ll dig into concepts like Orientalism, exoticism, a la Turca, Chinoiserie, appropriation, and many more. Exploring each composition within its own cultural, political, and musical context, we will attempt to answer certain key questions: why was it written and for whom? Does the composition foster understanding between different cultures or reinforce racial and ethnic stereotypes? What sorts of power relations are inherent in the composition, production, and reception of these musical works? This course is open to students from all areas of study.

Balkan Ensemble (MPF4204.01)

Balkan music is fierce brass, complex harmonies, and mind-bending asymmetrical dances. It is spirited Serbian wedding music, dissonant village songs, devastating Bosnian love ballads, saucy songs of the Greek underworld, and heart-pounding Turkish rhythms. In the Bennington Balkan Ensemble, we will learn to perform a variety of traditional, urban, village, and popular music from Southeast Europe. Singing and playing indigenous, orchestral, and electronic instruments, we’ll explore repertoire from Albania, Greece, Bosnia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosova, Turkey, Macedonia, Romania, and Serbia. Student, faculty and staff singers and instrumentalists of all types (strings, percussion, woodwinds, brass, etc.) are welcome in this ensemble.  Be prepared to sing, play, improvise, and dance.  Audition and instructor approval required.

Corequisites: Participation and performance at Music Workshop T 6:30-8:00

Bennington Plays: Playwrights (DRA4163.01)

This project-based class is for playwrights engaged in the process and techniques of rewriting and staging their plays. The majority of rewrites may happen prior to the semester, but substantial rewrites could emerge as essential during the production period. Collaborating with the director, actors, and designers will be the heart of this class.

Playwrights are expected to also serve as collective support for the other playwrights whose plays are being produced. In addition to the 4 plays receiving production, up to 6 other plays will receive staged readings as part of the festival.

We will meet as a group at least once a week, on Monday night, with the other nights designated for individual rehearsals. Playwrights will attend Production Meetings and outside Design meetings. Rehearsals culminate in public performances of multiple works staged in workshop productions supported by minimal design. Playwrights will also write a post-performance reflective essay.

Sherry Kramer
M/T/W/Th/F 7:00-10:00 (with some weekend rehearsals)
This course is categorized as All courses, Drama.

Avant-Garde Art in China (CHI4507.01)

Art is always somehow a reflection of the culture and society in which it is produced. In this class we will explore the ways in which contemporary (post-Mao) Chinese art reflects on modern Chinese culture and society. Each class or every other class, students will be given a packet with visual and written information on a particular work of art with a vocabulary list and grammar points for that material. Documentaries will also be used as a source of authentic input. Students will be expected to prepare to discuss the material in Chinese with the teacher and classmates during the next class meeting.

Corequisites: Language Series

Confucianism vs. Daoism (CHI4402.01)

The Twenty-four Stories of Filial Piety are well known Chinese stories that exemplify the devotion of children to their parents that is the chief virtue in Confucianism. The Daoist Tales of Zhuangzi, on the other hand, offer a much different set of values. These tales “translated” from classical Chinese into modern Mandarin at the student’s language level will serve as a starting point for an exploration into two complementary and competing schools of thought that have shaped the character and culture of the Chinese. Students will learn basic vocabulary and grammar through a four-skills approach while comparing and contrasting the basic concepts of these two important Chinese philosophies.

All students will meet in small groups once a week with the teacher outside of the regular classes.

Corequisites: Language Series

Creation of Statistics (MAT2247.01)

The amount of data in the world is vast and is increasing exponentially. It is easy to become overwhelmed and lose sight of the goal of data: to answer questions we have about the world in a specific, concise manner. The goal of this course is to help craft answerable questions—and then answer them. In order to do this, we will be using a programming language (“R”) to help us organize data, make clean, clear graphs, and help with appropriate analysis of the data.

This course will serve two main goals. The first is an introductory statistics course: gain knowledge of the basic statistical tests, how to interpret their results in a reasonable manner, and understand what those tests are doing at a conceptual level. The second is to learn the computational language of R: how to sort, shape, and handle data, create simulations and interpret the results, and build clean, clear graphical representations of the data presented.

This course is taught at the introductory level and has no prerequisites, but does require a significant amount of time and energy outside of the classroom as we are working towards the two aforementioned goals at once. This course is appropriate for students who plan to seriously create and analyze their own statistics for their work. It may be taken alone, or as a sequel to Presentation of Statistics. There is some overlap between the two courses, but their focus and goals are different. Students who take Presentation of Statistics first will get a broader skill set and a more gentle introduction.

Seminar on Monolingualism (LIN2103.01)

Scholarly estimates consistently place the percentage of the world’s population able to communicate proficiently in more than one language over 50%.  Yet multilingual competence is regularly treated as a secondary or even aberrant state requiring explanation and interpretation, while monolingualism is assumed as default despite its numerically inferior status.  In this course, we will reverse this paradigm, and work to view monolingualism as a contingent output of an essentially multilingual human milieu. Perspectives will range from the sociolinguistic to the psycholinguistic to the realm of language ideology/policy, and our examination of individual and societal-level practices will address topics relating to language acquisition, language contact/isolation, code-switching, mono-/polylectalism and mono-/diglossia.  Participation of multilingual and monolingual students in the seminar is welcomed.

Improvisation Ensemble for Musicians and Dancers (MPF4233.01)

This advanced course focuses on work in the performance of improvisation. For dancers, special attention is given to the development of individual movement vocabularies, physical contact and interaction, and the exploration of forms and structures.

For musicians, special attention is given to creating rhythms and sonorities which can then be manipulated and developed while interacting with dancers in the moment.

Dancers are expected to have experience with improvisation in performance and are asked to develop a structure for the group. Musicians should have basic skills on their instrument and be able create and convey a sense of form to other musicians in an efficient way.

Both dancers and musicians will meet together on Thursdays.

The Courtly World: Lady Shonagon and Lady Murasaki (LIT2379.01)

Written in eleventh century, The Tale of Genji by Murasaki Shikibu is considered the world’s first full novel and a masterwork of classical literature. Sei Shonagon’s The Pillow Book is a memoir recounting life in the Japanese court of the same time, also regarded as a masterpiece of observation and wit in evoking natural and human worlds. Both authors were ladies in waiting at the royal court during the Heian period (794­–1185), an era in which aristocrats competed for supremacy in political and artistic endeavors including poetry, music, and romance. In fiction and nonfiction, Lady Murasaki and Lady Shonagon chronicle the pursuits and rivalries of this courtly world in mesmerizing detail, rendering a society that may seem strikingly contemporary. We will read The Tale of Genji, which relates the adventures and many loves of Genji, the Shining Prince, The Pillow Book, and time allowing, Lady Murasaki’s diaries and contemporary responses to Genji and The Pillow Book. You will write two critical essays, present a group oral report on an aspect of Heian history or art, and write a fictionalized diary of daily life in the 21st century.

Sustainability and Social Justice (POL4256.02)

This course will explore how different social movements have incorporated principles of ecological sustainability and social justice into their activism. We will examine how environmentalists (mainstream and radical), indigenous rights activists, feminists, immigrants’ rights activists, anti-immigrant groups, religious organizations, conservatives and labor unions
have conceptualized and fought for sustainability. We will then critically reflect on the similarities and differences between these various attempts to articulate connections between the ecological and the social. By the end of the course, you will have a strong understanding of the opportunities and barriers that exist in efforts to build the alliances necessary for the
(re)construction of societies that are both ecologically sustainable and socially just.

The Magical Object – Visual Metaphor (DRA2116.01)

There is a great difference between a prop and an object on stage that is built or filled with the dramatic forces of a play. Such objects become metaphors, they become fresh comprehensions of the world. In the theater, we believe in magic. Our gaze is focused on ordinary objects…a glass figurine, a pair of shoes, a wedding dress…and then our attention is shaped, and charged, and we watch the everyday grow in meaning and power. Most of our greatest plays, written by our most poetic playwrights, contain a visual metaphor, an object with metaphorical weight that we can see on stage, not just in our mind’s eye.

How do we make the ordinary into the extraordinary? How do we create something that can carry meaning across the stage, into the audience and then out of the theater, all the way home, and into the lives of these strangers who come to sit together in the dark? How do we generate a magical object on stage?

Students will read five plays, watch films, complete several small writing exercises, write a play of 30-90 pages long that contains a magical object, and, as their final project, build/create that magical object.

Bennington Review: A Practicum in Literary Publishing and Editing-Poetry (LIT4330.02, section 2)

This two-credit course involves working on selecting and editing the content of Bennington’s recently relaunched national print literary magazine, Bennington Review. Students will serve as Editorial Assistants for the magazine, studying and practicing all aspects of magazine editing. The course will also engage students in discussions of contemporary print and digital literary culture, and of the history of literary magazines. Students will be selected in part based on their familiarity with contemporary literature, as well as for prior experience in editing or publishing. Students should anticipate plenty of work for two credits, as well as an immersive, hands-on, professional experience.

Corequisite: Students will be required to attend all Wednesday Literature Evenings and Poetry at Bennington events.

Reading & Writing Fiction: Plot and Suspense (LIT4144.01)

What is plot? What are stakes and how are they raised and can a story or a novel still compel a reader with small or smaller stakes? What is dramatic tension and what are the other ways a writer can build tension into a short story or a chapter? What, in other words, keeps a reader turning pages through a story or a novel and what happens when these same tools are applied to literary fiction? We’ll explore these questions and other questions of plot and plotting while reading fiction from ZZ Packer, Sally Rooney, Maggie Shipstead, Patricia Highsmith, Donna Tart, Andrea Lawlor, George Saunders, Patrick DeWitt, Jim Shepard, among others. The course will consist of close readings of published work alongside workshop of student submitted work.

Corequisites: Enrolled students are required to attend Wednesday night Bennington literary events.

St. Augustine and Literary Confession (LIT2339.01)

We live in an age of rampant confession, so it can be difficult to conceive of a world without it. Augustine’s Confessions—which the Bishop of Hippo dictated to a team of scribes between 397 and 400 C.E.—is one of those rare literary works that marks a very clear before and after. In this two-credit course we’ll spend the term reading the whole of the Confessions slowly and with care, examining it within the historical context of Late Antiquity and the Christianization of the Roman Empire. We’ll trace Plato’s ideas about the Soul and Neoplatonic notions of good and evil as Augustine syncretizes them into religious doctrine. We’ll treat the text as a form of ongoing prayer that divides the “I” and the “me” and invents a self that we can only call Modern. “Grant me chastity and continence,” Augustine prays while he is living in sin, “but not yet.” This ambivalence is the real engine of the conversion narrative and memoir as we have come to know it. We will periodically sample literary confession from different periods to get a sense of how literary forms have adapted to the confessional impulse. Students will keep a reading journal, write frequent critical response papers, and devise a final project that is a creative confession of their own.

Performance Art (DAN2129.01)

This class explores the concepts, questions and ideas of performance and performance practice. The class will cover a range of modalities in creating and developing performance. Using text, scores and improvisation to generate material and expand the palette and practice of art making. This work will focus on the corporeal and experiential aspect of developing performance work. Through viewing recorded performances, interviews and reading materials, we will study a range of perspectives in the field of performance. Students are required to create individual and collaborative work reflecting the concepts and practices studied during the semester.

Form and Process: Investigations in Painting (PAI2107.01)

This course introduces a variety of materials, techniques and approaches to painting with oils. Emphasis is placed on developing and understanding of color, form and space as well as individual research and conceptual concerns. The daily experience of seeing, along with the history of art, provides a base from which investigations are made. Formal, poetic, and social implications within paintings both from class and from art history are examined and discussed. Students complete work weekly. There are regular group critiques, and individual reviews, reading assignments and lectures by visiting artists. A high degree of motivation is expected.

The Politics of Student Movements in the ’60s (SCT2141.01)

To most of you, the 1960’s might seem like ancient history. There wasn’t even social media! You might be surprised to find out that many of the problems confronted by the student movement during that time are the same as problems we see today. Although the student uprisings seemed focused on the Vietnam War, many other issues were part of the struggle: workers strikes, antiracist actions, the changing role of women in society, the question of violence/pacifism, and the ecological crisis. This seven-week class will use readings, discussions, guest speakers, and individual projects to examine the role of SDS (Students for a Democratic Society) in mobilizing a national movement based on grassroots organizing, its part in generating antiwar sentiment, and its location within the broader terrain of ’60s struggles.

Janet Foley, John Hultgren
M/Th 1:40-3:30 (first seven weeks)
This course is categorized as All courses, SCT.

Bennington Plays: Design (DRA4129.01)

This project-based class is for designers developing and implementing scenic, lighting, or costume designs for productions of new student written plays. Teams of directors and designers will work with other students in corresponding courses for playwrights, directors and actors, who are participating in the Bennington Plays Festival.

In a laboratory atmosphere, we will collaboratively develop an overall design approach for the festival, as well as specific designs for each play (either individually or collectively). Richard MacPike (Technical Instructor in Costume Production) will provide guidance and mentoring to costume designers. Particular attention will be placed on collaboration and communication between designers and directors, but also among and between all participants. Designers will meet once a week on Monday evenings and also attend drama production meetings on Mondays from 5:30-6:30 pm, through the performances in early to mid May. Students will also write a post-performance reflective essay.

Intermedia Performance (MPF4225.01)

In this course, we will focus on hybrid practices and explore various forms of intermedia art such as video/audio mashups, audiovisual performance and installation, movement for the camera, and sound and video for movement. The readings and discussions will give an introduction to the intermedia art practice as well as the history of early audiovisual tools, theories on audiovisual perception, video as an intermedium, and aesthetics of collage. The emphasis will be on hands-on practice: students will be encouraged to work with found/archival footage, video camera and projection techniques, sound recordings and audio transducers, as well as learn how to design their performative setups.

Social Dynamics of Inclusion (SCT2134.01)

This course will examine social psychological approaches to promoting inclusivity. Content will focus on contextual factors that contribute to, and maintain bias in contemporary society, and on methods that can promote collaboration across difference. Topics will include: power, intersectionality, micro-aggression, intergroup dynamics, social justice, intergroup dialogue, and related concepts. Students will be expected to participate actively; examine, understand, and articulate different perspectives; and engage fully with the assigned readings and materials. Weekly reflection papers are required; students will also submit and present a final project.

Delia Saenz
Th 3:40-5:30
This course is categorized as All courses, SCT.

Unique Prints: 3-D Prints and Modular Works (PRI4272.01)

This course is an introduction to unique prints, or prints that are not necessarily printed as an edition. We will emphasize the making of mixed media prints using a broad range of methods from monotypes to digital prints. The class is structured around a series of projects where rigorous experimentation is encouraged.

Students will learn various non-typical printmaking methods through a straightforward format of demonstrations of techniques, hands-on experience, and critiques. Techniques will include monotype, polyester laser plates, and various transfer techniques. Additionally, we will explore the possibilities of 3-dimentional applications for prints. This can include anything from books, paper cups, matchbooks, modular installations, appropriated prints and wallpapers. We may also be collaborating on projects with other classes or universities.

Queer French (in English) (FRE2109.01)

In this advanced course, we will examine French culture’s engagement with questions of sexuality and gender, with a focus on authors, artists, theorists, and others who have questioned ideas of normative sexuality from the Middle Ages through the 21st century. Authors and texts to be studied will include Marguerite de Navarre, l’Abbé de Choisy, Diderot, Monique Wittig, Virginie Despentes, Guillaume Dustan, Abdellah Taïa, Edouard Louis, Bambi (Sebastian Lifshitz), and Parole de King (Chriss Lag). Advanced level. Conducted in English.

Jazz Ensemble (MPF4250.01)

This ensemble will perform a wide range of Jazz music (a genre that is constantly evolving), with an emphasis on both ensemble playing and improvisation skills. By playing together, students will learn how blues, swing, Latin, and rock elements have all fueled this music called jazz. Students will also learn how major Jazz artists such as Ellington, Monk, Mingus, Wayne Shorter, Ornette Coleman and others have approached composition. As a group we will explore different techniques for playing over chord changes and ways to make improvised solos more interesting, both harmonically and rhythmically. Whether playing a jazz standard, a student composition, or free music, the emphasis will be on listening and on interacting with each other, finding ways to create blend, groove, dynamic contrast, and tension/release. Students will also be encouraged to bring in arrangements, transcriptions, and compositions, which will be read and developed by the ensemble. Students need to have adequate technique on a musical instrument, be able to read music and have a basic understanding of harmony (chord structures, chord-scales, etc.)

Entry to Mathematics (MAT2100.01)

This is a basic course, covering most of high school mathematics, and will be accessible to all interested and willing students. It is appropriate for students who do not feel confident in their high school mathematics background. Students may proceed from this course to other 2000 level mathematics courses. Mathematics is inherent across all disciplines and undertakings. It is necessary for building structures, assessing risk in everyday life, mixing paint for specific shades, creating business models of growth and decay, setting traffic lights, and can even help assess the correct time to propose. This course will show how math has evolved from counting to the combination of abstract symbols and numbers it appears as today. Covering algebra, geometry, ratios, patterns, series, graphing, probability, and more, we will focus on the foundations of mathematics and the basic skills and reasoning needed for mathematical success. Our goal will be to become conversant in the language of mathematics and understand how it affects our specific disciplines and work as well as strengthen our mathematical skills.

Exodus (LIT2320.01)

In this two-credit class, we focus on the second book of the Bible. Full of earthly incident (oppression, banishment, plagues, exile) and numinous drama (God’s revealing himself to Moses, the Covenant, the giving of the Ten Commandments), Exodus is, of course, a foundational text for Jews; for millenia, it has also been a magnet for poets, novelists, philosophers, composers, theologians, historians, and political thinkers, activists, and revolutionaries. Exodus is the text in which the Hebrew God injects Himself into history; much of our thinking will be about this momentous event, and the accompanying commandment to remember, perhaps best expressed by the Hebrew Zakhor. We will also consider the character of “the man Moses,” who was a conflicted, uneasy leader, who tried to dissuade God from naming him his messenger, and who fought bitterly not only with those he was charged to protect, but with God himself. We read this text as a (collective) work of literature, and so you will need to be attentive to modes of narration, framing, pacing, voice, and patterns of imagery.

The Art of Literary Translation (LIT4319.01)

It may well be that the closest, most interpretative, and creative reading of a text involves translating it from one language to another. Questions of place, culture, epoch, voice, gender, and rhythm take on new urgency, helping us to deepen our writerly skills and sensibilities. As Joseph Brodsky put it: “You must memorize poems, do translation, study foreign languages. And the best way to study a foreign language…is by translating a poem…The music of the poem carries you, you float upon waves of sound, but, at the same time, you peer below the surface of the ocean, and there, in the depths, you notice the teeming life of sea creatures…”

Writers in all genres are welcome to explore this “teeming life” that is the fruit of literary translation. Our workshop has a triple focus: comparing and contrasting existing translations of the same work; reading translators on the art and theory of translation; and critiquing students’ translations-in-progress. We will also consider translation as an act of bearing witness to cultural and political crisis, and as a means of encoding messages that would otherwise be censored.

For a final project, you will have two options: an extended critical study or an original translation (poetry, prose, drama) accompanied by an introduction. There will also be weekly reading assignments and research presentations.

Psychology of Creativity: Making and Using Metaphors (PSY4226.01)

This course will address two large areas in the psychology of creativity: (1) special creativity, that is, the study of creative persons and the specific characteristics of high-level creative thinkers. We will look at how creativity is measured, what personal characteristics or life circumstances seem to foster creative achievement, and the contributions of history in making decisions about who is creative and who is not. (2) general creativity, or the ordinary experience of creativity in everyday life. We will look at metaphoric and figurative language, how it is used and understood, and other experiences of normal creative leaps made by all human thinkers.

Bebop, Rock & Beyond II (MIN4226.01)

Bebop, Rock & Beyond II is a drum set course that will continue to build on the musical techniques associated with cutting edge drummers while expanding your musicianship and performing abilities. We will continue to look at the drumming architects of Bebop, Rock, and innovative musicians who are taking drum set playing Beyond the traditions of rock and jazz. This course is for drummers who have taken drum set lessons, practice regularly, and are looking to learn and fine-tune their fundamentals in these musical styles on this instrument. We will continue to work on music notation, analyzing specific work, and learning specific pieces. We will use audio, video, and technology to broaden and enhance our learning experience while understanding tuning and what it takes to maintain acoustic drums. This course requires the successful passing of Bebop, Rock & Beyond I or approval from the instructor.

Feminist Geographies of Dis/ability (SCT2133.01)

In this course we will engage anti-racist feminist theory, crip theory, and human geography to think critically about dis/ability. We will draw on critical geographies of disability to think about the built environment and institutional design; geographic scales of the body and the body-mind; spaces of the home and institutions; and im/mobility and spatial access. We will also consider how dis/ability is shaped by (and also shapes) practices of care, experiences of embodiment, and emotion. Furthermore, we will grapple with the legacies of trauma produced by slavery, colonization, surveillance, and incarceration, as well as by movements like eugenics and white liberal feminism, while considering trauma’s complicated relationships to medicalized notions of wellness, disease, and recovery. Throughout the course, we will consider disability as intersecting with race, queerness, fatness, class, and trans* and gender-nonconforming/non-binary experiences; and difference, pathology, and deviance. Most centrally, we will ask: What is the spatiality of dis/ability, and how can space be occupied and reappropriated for radically inclusive uses? How can we understand both normality and deviance as socially constructed concepts that nonetheless have real, and uneven, implications for people’s lives?

Emily Mitchell-Eaton
M/Th 1:40-3:30
This course is categorized as All courses, SCT.

Speaking of Earth: Environmental Speeches that Moved the World (MOD2163.01)

In this course, based on the book Speaking of Earth, edited by Alon Tal, we will read twenty inspiring speeches by leading environmentalists around the world that examine a broad range of environmental issues. Included in the course is Rachel Carson’s defense of her ground breaking book Silent Spring, Prince Charles’s passionate call for sustainable agriculture, and the Dalai Lama’s explanation of a path to ecological harmony. The module will include participants in the class writing their own speech.

Future Studio (VA4207.01)

Future Studio is a creative incubator designed for the development and articulation of new enterprises that value workers, local communities, sustainability, and the environment equally with profit. The course is designed to lay the foundation for building new enterprise of all types through the unique integration of creativity, arts & culture, and business competencies.

Modeled after the Bennington Plan, which is inherently entrepreneurial, Future Studio engages business as an artistic space that marries inquiry-based idea development, artistic social and civic practice, iterative design, and new business models to generate constructive social outcomes.

We will examine the history of artists and innovative entrepreneurs who have developed organizations and enterprises that break from extractive business models and, instead, integrate creativity and sustainable economic development. The course applies a segmented learning model which utilizes a recursive process of collaboration and active learning, while building capacities in areas such as finance, legal structure, and enterprise modeling.

Future Studio emphasizes creativity, innovation, place-centered economies, worker-centered ownership, environmental sustainability, social justice and financial viability. The goal is to develop ideas that may lead to the creation of new ventures which can be launched as viable enterprises with powerful economic potential and socially responsible missions.

Students who are interested in rethinking what it means to be in business today, possess an interest in the promise of creative enterprise and have skills and knowledge from diverse discipline areas are strongly encouraged to enroll. You do not need to be a visual arts student to meaningfully participate in this course.

How to Build a Habitable Planet (PHY2118.01)

This course will investigate the physical conditions and processes necessary for creating a habitable planet. We will study the formation of stars and planets, and the evolution of planets after formation into safe harbors for life. This will include investigation of how both stellar and geological processes affect the habitability of planets, and consideration of the possible conditions that make a planet a suitable life-host. We will use the Earth and our solar system as a case study for the successful formation of a life-host, and will use this knowledge to look outward for other Earths among the thousands of planets being discovered elsewhere in our Galaxy.

Hugh Crowl & Tim Schroeder
M/Th 1:40-3:30
This course is categorized as All courses, Physics.

Devising: Moving through Time and Space (DRA2177.01)

“The beauty here is a beauty you feel in your flesh. You feel it physically….Other beauty takes only the heart, or the mind.” (Barry Lopez, “Arctic Dreams.”)

Devising is a form of collaborative creation in which the performers themselves author every moment of a performance from movement to text (if any) to spatial relationships, clothing, entrances and exits, etc. The “stage” may be viewed as a natural landscape through which performers journey. Unlike story-driven theater or dance, elements such as space, time, movement, and sound all share an equal footing.

In this course, we will immerse ourselves in various approaches to Devising. We will read and watch the work of such innovators as Mary Overlie, the Tectonic Theater Project, Ping Chong, and Frantic Assembly. Throughout the term we will perform exercises and studies as the class begins to create its own devised piece. This course is recommended to anyone interested in collaborative creation, dance/theater, experimental theater, devising, and making one’s own work. The course culminates in a public presentation of the work.

Photo Now (PHO2141.01)

This course explores the evolution of contemporary photography from the late 20th century to the present day. We will be looking at a wide range of influences from identity politics, TV and film, social media, and the move from analog to digital technologies. The class format will be weekly faculty lectures accompanied by student research and presentations. Students will keep a journal and complete a midterm and final assignment.

Simultaneous Occupancies (ARC4239.01)

This class will investigate architectural projects that posit simultaneous programs contained within a single envelope. We will look at various conditions under which varying, and even divergent interests are pursued by the building and its occupants, including the haunted house, the safe house, the “front”, and similar conditions where one use conceals or overlies another.

Studio projects will focus on the exploration and development of other conditions where this topology may be employed to create new opportunities for simultaneous occupancy. Spaces will be created to contain these programs in a way that explores how their parallel existences are imprinted on one another.

Distributed Systems (with Lab) (CS4280.01)

In this class, we will, as a group, build a working distributed system from scratch, such as a web search engine, distributed file system, blockchain/distributed ledger, or peer-to-peer network. By building such a system, students will learn about key theoretical and practical fundamentals related to distributed systems and software engineering, such as concurrency, replication, commit models, fault-expectancy, self-organization and management, load-balancing, capacity planning, network programming, containerization and microservices, and physical and environmental considerations. These key principles are what lie at the core of the designs of well-known systems such as those built by Google, Bing, Facebook, Yahoo, Twitter and others. The class will evolve from reading and discussing research and working on foundational programming projects, to working through the design of the system, developing it, planning its deployment, and releasing it into the wild. Includes lab.

Painterly Painters & Portraiture (AH4122.01)

According to art historical tradition, “painterly painters” are those whose work exhibits a gestural, often loose, facture that makes the viewer conscious of its painted quality through visible brushwork, inchoate, haptic, blotches and sometimes, heavy impasto. Portraits, like painterly painting, are thought to be largely concerned with fixing or situating individuality, particularity, figuration v. abstraction, and even identity construction, subjectivity, and self-awareness. Together this range of concerns will structure a selective study of the portrait painters (who should be) best known for their virtuosic coloring and painterliness including, but not limited to: Titian, Rubens, Van Dyck, Velázquez, Ribera, Reynolds, Carriera, Boucher, Goya, Manet, Sargent, Bacon, Guston, Rauschenberg, Whitten, Lewis, Basquiat, Saville, Richter, Simpson, Odutola, etc. Race, gender, nationalism, and close looking anchor our exploration.

The Human Condition: Hannah Arendt (PHI4101.01)

Hannah Arendt (1906-1975) was a major political theorist whose work has become increasingly influential in recent years. A student of Martin Heidegger and Karl Jaspers, her extensive writings cover such topics as the nature of power, the meaning of the political, and the problem of totalitariansim. This course is a critical exploration of some of her major works, including The Origins of Totalitariansim, The Human Condition, and Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil, as well as a assessment of the critical response to her work.

Traces, Mistakes, and Leftovers (DRW4237.01)

The role of drawing has changed over the history of art, from primitive recording to preliminary sketch, from documentation to works that function independently. How can we expand these notions to include the remnants of the making process. Can the research done before a project, the many mistakes made in process, or the discards left after completion of an artwork be considered acts of drawing? What happens in the moments when we think we aren’t working? Can we analyze our interactions with the world that lead to a certain way of making things? What is the necessity or value of ruins?

In this course students collect, analyze, and employ the physical and conceptual detritus surrounding their making process. Topics include: idea generation and development, the use of memory, teaching and learning, and drawing as a way of thinking. In-class activities and discussions are complemented by readings, writings, and the production of an individual body of work, including an elaborate commonplace book. Students are expected to be engaged in a concurrent 4000 level studio/making course.

Mary Lum
M 1:40-5:20 (first seven weeks)
This course is categorized as All courses, Drawing.

The Actor’s Instrument (DRA2170.01)

The craft of acting will be the main focus of this class. Through physical and vocal warm-up exercises, sensory exploration, improvisation, scene work, and extensive reading students will be asked to develop an awareness of their own unique instrument as actors and learn to trust their inner impulses where this is concerned. Extensive out of class preparation of specific exercises as well as rehearsal with scene partners will constitute the bulk of expected work. Students can expect this to amount to six hours of required rehearsal time per week. In addition students will read several plays throughout the term, as well as weekly theory handouts. The writings, exercises, and work of such theater artists as Anne Bogart, Constantin Stanislavski, Sanford Meisner, Uta Hagen, Jerzy Grotowski among others will be researched and discussed in class.

Corequisites: Drama Lab

Stage Management (DRA2241.01)

The key role of the stage manager as both collaborative artist and manager in the production process is explored by students in this class. Readings, discussions, and projects on topics including scheduling, play breakdowns, prompt book preparation, blocking notation, ground plan and theatre layout, and the running of rehearsals and performances are included. The relationship of the stage manager to others involved in the process is also addressed. Many assignments are designed to develop broader event, production, and arts management artistry and skills. A significant and required part of the coursework is work as stage manager or assistant stage manager on a College production to gain first-hand knowledge and experience. This production component lasts from two to ten weeks, and includes attendance at all rehearsals held for the particular production. Most rehearsals are held on evenings and weekends; availability for rehearsals most weeknights is normally essential for successful project completion.

This course is recommended for those interested in directing, performing, and/or arts management, as well as anyone interested in knowing and experiencing what is involved in putting on a production.

Life and Death: Buddhism in Modern Japanese Films (JPN4401.01)

In this course, students will examine how Buddhism influenced Japanese thought on the after-life and analyze how Japanese views on the relationship between life and death are depicted in recent Japanese films. In the first seven weeks of the course, students will examine and discuss the history, beliefs, and deities of Buddhism and their influences on society. In the second half of the term, students will analyze how death and a common theme, reincarnation, are depicted in different genres of Japanese films such as love stories and fantasy. Throughout the course, students will develop both their linguistic skills and cognitive skills by discussing their understanding of Buddhist beliefs and analyzing Japanese perspectives on death and reincarnation. Individual projects are required. Conducted in Japanese. Intermediate Level.

Corequisites: Language Series

Keats and Stevens (LIT2299.02)

This introductory seminar will consider and juxtapose the 19th century British Romantic poet John Keats and the 20th century American modernist poet Wallace Stevens, both of whom were rigorous craftsmen, provocative thinkers, and aesthetic theorists who argued fervently for the supremacy of the imagination, the interconnectedness of truth and beauty, and the importance of mystery and uncertainty in poetry. Alternating between Keats and Stevens, we will consider the poetry and critical prose of both writers and look for common threads, both in their writing and artistic sensibility. We will write two short critical essays and together engage in intensive close readings of each poet’s work.

A Voice from a Wound: Trauma and Memory in Hispanophone Literature (SPA4802.01)

This advanced Spanish course is a study of the paradox of trauma literature. Stories that compel their telling, yet are unassimilated and unspeakable, trauma narratives grow out of disaster and crisis on an individual and/or collective scale. To better understand Anne Whitehead’s assertion that “Novelists have frequently found that the impact of trauma can only adequately be represented by mimicking its forms and symptoms, so that temporality and chronology collapse, and narratives are characterized by repetition and indirection,” we first consider representative fictional narratives by contemporary Spanish authors including Juan Goytisolo, Juan Marsé, and Isaac Rosa Camacho. In order to develop an appropriate theoretical background, students also tackle major contributions by theorists such as Freud, Herman, Caruth, LaCapra, and Whitehead, whose ideas resonate deeply with our primary literary texts. Thereafter, students’ individual research questions will drive content choices, such that, depending on student interests, there will be ample opportunity to consider examples from any time and place in the Hispanophone world. Co-requisite: attendance at 2 language events. In Spanish. Advanced level.

Corequisites: Language Series

Regardez (FRE4496.01)

In this course, students will examine specific visual representations within the context of French culture. Through the reading of a wide variety of French images, including among other works Chartres cathedral’s stained glass, La Tour’s chiaroscuro paintings, Haitian art, as well as virtual reality experiments, students will hone their linguistic skills and enrich their understanding of French, economical, sociological, historical and artistic realities and values. Written assignments and oral presentations will develop students’ level of comprehension, mastery of grammar, in French, as well as their critical skills. Intermediate-high level. Conducted in French.