2016 Courses

January 11 – 22, 2016

AMST 150. You've Got (Snail) Mail (Cancelled)
From formal correspondence to coded government messages to love notes, letters have served critical roles in constructing American social, political, cultural systems. In this course we will explore how letter writing, delivery, and exchange practices from the colonial era to the present have contributed to American identities. Letters cross the boundaries between public and private lives, and we will consider letters from multiple perspectives, such as soldiers' letters as historical narratives, fan mail as pop culture artifacts, and illustrated notes as art. Our studies will also focus on epistolary culture, including postal service history, international pen pals, snail mail in today's digital age, and mail art. The class will include two Hartford field trips. Instructor: Karen Li Miller. Enrollment Limit: 15.

AMST 290. Hip Hop in Film (This course is full - select another)
Through the lens of the six unique films that embody the aesthetic of Hip Hop culture, this course examines Hip Hop’s cinematic representation over the span of the past thirty years. Engaging critical analysis of Hip Hop on the silver screen, students explore how the entertainment industry has framed the public’s understanding of Hip Hop. At the same time, students are taught to reflect upon the role Hip Hop has played in the culture in which they came of age. Particular emphasis is placed upon the way in which Hip Hop culture has served to redefine issues of race, gender, sexuality, ownership, commodification, and public space.. Instructor: Nicholas Conway. Enrollment Limit: 15.

BIOL 119. Nutrition: Food and Fads
This course will explore many aspects of nutrition including the science of food, popular diet plans and cultural views of nutrition. We will use scientific texts and primary literature to explore the science of food, nutritional supplements, food intolerance and allergy and the effect of diet on health. Students will work in small groups to explore the strengths and weaknesses of fad diets. As an ongoing project throughout the course, students will design a diet plan based on their own needs, philosophy, preferences, health history and family and cultural history and will follow their plan and reflect on the experience. We will also incorporate cooking class-selected recipes and dining experiences in relation to nutrition. All levels of college science background are welcome. Not creditable to the biology major.Instructor: Alison Draper. Enrollment Limit: 15.

CLCV 243. Oedipus the King on Page, Stage, Screen (Cancelled)

Ever since Aristotle deemed Sophocles' play Oedipus Tyrannus (better known as Oedipus the King) the exemplary tragedy of the classical Athenian dramatic tradition, it has enjoyed a privileged position in the Western cultural tradition; thinkers and artists have investigated, recreated, and adapted Sophocles' retelling of the ancient Greek myth to the own ends. Students will explore the significance of Oedipus in its ancient Athenian context and through modern interpretations in literary analysis, theatrical performance, and on screen in works as diverse as Martha Graham's dance-theater piece Night Journey and Christopher Nolan's film Memento. Instructor: Meredith Safran. Enrollment Limit: 15.

COLL 156. Women's Sports: The Struggles and Triumphs of Acceptance (Cancelled)​
The first Boston Marathon was held in 1897, but women were deemed “physically incapable of running that distance” and couldn’t officially enter the race until 1972. Title IX passed 43 years ago, yet many high school girls and college women still practice and compete in subpar facilities with inferior equipment. Serena Williams, on the verge of winning her 22nd Grand Slam title, has recently been criticized for being too muscular. This course will provide a historical background for what female athletes have accomplished and the challenges and stereotypes they continue to face in gaining equality in the sports world. Through film and documentaries, we'll capture a deeper understanding of the female athletes’ journey as they continue to break barriers and change the landscape of sports. Instructor: Robin Sheppard. Enrollment Limit: 15.

FREN 245. French and Belgian Whodunnits: Four Major Francophone Detective Novels
Students will explore three major francophone detective novels: Georges Simenon's L'Affaire Saint Fiacre, Didier Daeninck's Le Geant Inacheve, and Patrick Manchette's Que d'Os! Emphasis will be placed upon narratological, social and political analysis. The study of film adaptations will complement the readings. The class will be conducted in French and will count toward the French major or minor. Instructor: Jean-Marc Kehres. Enrollment Limit: 15. 

HIST 142. From Scroll to Screen: Books in the Digital Age (Cancelled)
Using the resources of the Watkinson Library, this course will explore the evolution of the form, use, and impact of the book in human culture and will explore the changing nature of the book in the age of the Internet and digital books. Instructor: Jonathan Elukin. Enrollment Limit: 15.

HIST 150. What Happened to the Ancestral Pueblo People? A Study in Environmental Catastrophe? (Cancelled)
Between c. 900 and 1300 CE the Four Corners area of the United States (Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, and Arizona) hosted a thriving culture, famous for the “cliff dwellings” of Mesa Verde. By about 1285, the population of these settlements disappeared. What happened to them remains a matter of controversy, but there seems now to be general agreement that a mega-drought in the Southwest stressed people to the breaking-point: war, intra-cultural violence, crop failure, famine, disease seem to have devastated the populations, till they simply decided to leave. Understanding what happened to the Ancestral Pueblo is a central question in American prehistory. Instructor: Gary Reger. Enrollment Limit: 15.

LACS 233.  The Godfather: The Art of Hard Choices (This course is full - select another)
The Godfather films (I and II) are narrative masterpieces that provide many insights into the interplay of character and culture in decision-making in high-stakes situations outside the law. We will interpret the films as illustrations of strategic interaction in stylized mafia settings. Specific topics are the relationship between narrative fiction and reality; motivations and behavior; the mafia’s code of honor; private protection and extortion; vice markets; corruption; and the prisoner’s dilemma. The course has an experimental hybrid format: 8 seminar classes (50 minutes each) and 12 online class units. Assessment is based on three assignments: 1) a paper (1,500 words) on a topic to be chosen in consultation with the instructor; 2) a seminar report; and 3) seminar participation. The paper and the report require analysis of film clips in the spirit of the syllabus. Instructor: John Alcorn. Enrollment Limit: 14.

POLS 244. Envisioning Yourself as a Leader (This course is full - select another)

Leadership means different things to different people. To some the idea of leadership centers on elective office. For others, the term suggests activism around specific social issues, business advancement, or holding influential positions in the non-profit sector. Various theories about leadership and the skills necessary to be a leader will be analyzed throughout the course. Carefully selected readings will guide our discussions about leadership. We will consider the challenges and opportunities for groups trying to achieve new leadership positions. Issues of race, ethnicity, class, gender and sexuality will also be considered as they pertain to leadership trends and norms in the US and abroad. Outside speakers, fieldtrips and consultation with career development experts will help each student set goals and create a strategic leadership plan.Instructor: Stefanie Chambers. Enrollment Limit: 15.

RELG 222. Voodoo, Zombies, and the Conjured Dead
This course focuses on those religious traditions known collectively as “Voodoo.” By examining powerful displays of spirit possession, rituals in which the ancestors raise from their graves to dance, and secretive ceremonies from which social criminals become walking zombies, students will explore the lived experiences of Voodoo practitioners from around the world. We will juxtapose Western imaginations and fantasies of Voodoo to the real-lived experiences of practitioners. In so doing, students will learn how, despite racial stereotyping and anti-Africa sentiments around the globe, Voodoo has become one of the world’s fastest growing global religions. Along with rich ethnographic texts, throughout the course students will engage with critical-race theory, theories of globalization, transnationalism, diaspora, and urban religious expansion.. Instructor: Timothy Landry. Enrollment Limit: 15.

RHET 120. Exploring the (Un)Known
Writing is a way to create knowledge, and what better to create knowledge about than your own life and environment? We will explore students’ experiences at Trinity through exploratory writing, drafts, revisions, and a formal paper culminating in a portfolio of writing. Instructor: Robert Peltier. Enrollment Limit: 15

SOCL 234. Campus Sexual Assault:  Sociological Perspectives
What can a sociological perspective tell us about the social problem of campus sexual assault? It addresses challenges to reported statistics regarding the scope of the problem, the social construction of masculinity and femininity, campus cultures, power relations in victim-blaming, and sexual violence on group and societal levels. In addition to data and theory, a sociological viewpoint also includes praxis or preventative action regarding sexual assault on college campuses. In this course, students will learn about bystander intervention and its linkages to gender inequalities at the micro- and macro-level of society; we will consider the strengths and limitations of this model and other institutional responses. Classes will incorporate relevant readings, in-class exercises, documentary films, and a guest speaker from Connecticut Sexual Assault Crisis Services. Instructor: Tanetta Andersson. Enrollment Limit: 15.

​​​​​​​​​​​SOCL 242. #Black Lives Matter (Cancelled)
Black Lives Matter speaks beyond the specific, multiple and heinous acts of police violence but tells a longer tale of systematic and structural inequalities, white supremacy, and state-sponsored terrorism. The course will not only focus on these acts of violence but also on the history in which these acts are embedded and from which they take their meaning. In addition to that history, the course also seeks to understand the Black Lives Matter movement in the context of neoliberal capitalism. Instructor: Johnny Williams. Enrollment Limit: 15