SOCIAL STUDIES

CRN 10155

Distribution

A/C
Course No. SST 225
Title Ideology, Media, and Mass Culture
Professor Joel Kovel
Schedule Mon Wed 10:00 am - 11:20 am OLIN 201
Cross-listed: Political Studies

An introduction to the critique of society through a study of the institutions and products of the media and mass culture. Our social existence is profoundly "mediated" by the control and projection of ideas and images, whether through print journalism, advertising, or what is called "entertainment," especially television. We shall work toward attaining an understanding of the processes through which this occurs and the forces that dominate them. Class time will be divided roughly between examining products of the press, television, and so forth, and lectures on the theory of ideology and the media. Maximum 25 students, open to all.

CRN 10391

Distribution

C
Course No. SST 318
Title Constitutional Law
Professor Alan Sussman
Schedule Mon 10:30 am - 12:50 pm OLIN 309
Cross-listed: American Studies

This course will focus on those aspects of constitutional law which determine the boundaries between individual autonomy and state control. These boundaries, however, are never static since the Constitution is an organic document, subject to continual interpretation. Supreme Court cases will be read which concern the nature and limits of freedom of speech (including advocacy of revolution, obscenity and hate speech), religious liberty, discrimination based on race, sex and sexual orientation, election campaign contributions, intimacy and privacy (including contraception and abortion), capital punishment and due process in criminal procedure. Relevant commentaries and historical documents will be read and discussed as well. In addition, emerging concepts of constitutional adjudication such as original intention, critical legal studies and feminist jurisprudence will be considered.

CRN 10156

Distribution

A/C
Course No. SST 331 Upper College Seminar
Title Ecological Thought
Professor Joel Kovel
Schedule Mon 1:30 pm - 3:50 pm OLIN 307
Cross-listed: Political Studies, Philosophy, CRES

The ecological crisis demands that we engage in a major rethinking of the relationship between humanity and nature. In this seminar we will critically examine, first, anti-ecological positions in thought, in particular, mechanical materialism and Social Darwinism. From there we will proceed to explore ways of rethinking the philosophy of nature. The central category will be the notion of "dialectic"; this will be explored historically and in relation to nature. The fundamental question is the degree to which humans differentiate themselves from nature and recognize themselves in nature, or undertake the "domination of nature." For students who have taken Introduction to the Ecological Crisis, or who have a background in philosophy or critical theory.