On Walking

Walking can be the ultimate act of freedom. But walking while black, while trans, or without papers, for example, can often risk a violent loss of freedom. Historically, however, marginalized groups have used walking (i.e. the protest march) to fight for freedom itself. Drawing on fields as diverse as environmental literature and philosophy, feminist studies […]

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iGen Reboot

The iGen: the most diverse and transformational generation in U.S. history who have literally had the world at their fingertips since birth, reportedly have been experiencing multiple crises. Recently, they have been getting closer attention from psychologists and journalists trying to identify the crises and find remedies. Can they do that without asking the iGens […]

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Frenemies: Humans and Animals

The nature of the human-animal relationship is complex, pervasive, and paradoxical.  Over the course of human history, we have domesticated, exploited, and protected species — we love dogs, eat pigs, and despise rats. In dissecting this relationship, we will examine environmental issues, race, culture, sexuality, gender, and concepts of selfhood. By the end of the […]

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What’s It Worth? How We Determine Value

How do we, as individuals and societies, determine the value of things, services, and experiences? Questions like the value of a national park, a child well-educated, or a life prematurely lost are central to both government policy and individual commitments. Through careful reading, critical discussion, short integrative essays, and interactions with local organizations involved in […]

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Coming to Terms with Past Violence

Embedded in the fabric of every national narrative is the attempt to understand past violence. Words like reconciliation, reckoning, justice, impunity, accountability, and forgiveness all have distinct connotations depending on their specific national context and the actors who employ them. In this course, we analyze localized forms of interpreting violence through regional case studies from […]

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