2017 Courses

January 9 - 20, 2017

AMST 290. Hip Hop in Film
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.  Through 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 (FULL)
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 period, 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.

COLL 199. Trinity E-portfolio for HPAP Students: Tracking Your Competencies (Cancelled)
Students will build an electronic portfolio of their academic work, working with a faculty portfolio advisor and a group of nine students. Students will select at least one piece of work from each class, review them with the group, and improve them when appropriate. Students will also produce an extracurricular writing specific to their class year and major. Students will be provided support in developing their portfolio for use in graduate school applications and job interviews and applications.  These E-portfolios will be utilized by the Health Professions Advising Committee to help students document, develop and describe activities that represent the various ‘competencies’ now required by health professions graduate schools (medical schools in particular)for incoming students. Instructors: Bill Church and Sue Denning. Enrollment Limit: 15.
COLL 203. Analyzing and Communicating Financial Data
Private citizens, public policymakers, and industry leaders increasingly are overwhelmed by data intended to help inform decision-making. This course is designed to help students identify, organize, and analyze data strategically, with a focus on data sources relevant to financial activity. Non-technical data analysis and visualization will be used to illuminate policy outcomes or to assist with the prediction of the likely behavior of governments, firms, or financial variables.  The course will utilize both proprietary and open data sources to extract political, economic, financial, social, and historical information.  The course will not count toward any major, and no previous knowledge or experience in financial economics is expected.  Recommended: one course in statistics or social science methods. Instructors: Cheryl Cape and Christopher Hoag. Enrollment Limit: 10.

COLL 236. Reading The Underground Railroad
Published in 2016 to critical acclaim, Colson Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad quickly has become a part of the national conversation about racism in America. Whitehead’s novel imagines a historical reality in which the Underground Railroad – long known as a metaphor for the escape routes used to escape from slavery – is not a metaphor at all, but rather a “real” network of tracks, engines, conductors, and passengers. In doing so, this book “about” the past disrupts our sense of history, and in doing so provides commentary on our present. A trans-disciplinary course in a seminar-like setting, we will read Whitehead’s novel as an occasion to reflect on racism and the matter of black lives while engaging theories of literature, history, reality, and representation. We will collaborate with the Amistad Center for Arts and Culture, and students will develop their own scholarly and/or creative projects. Instructor: John Conley. Enrollment Limit: 15.
EDUC 205. Mapping Hartford (Cancelled)
In this hands-on course, students will create digital maps about metropolitan Hartford, and travel to meet people and places whose stories they tell. You will gain valuable skills in data visualization and web design, learn about the history of the city and its suburbs, expand your comfort zone beyond campus, and taste delicious foods in different neighborhoods. All readings and class exercises are freely available on the instructor’s websites (http://OnTheLine.trincoll.edu and http://DataVizForAll.org). Bring any laptop computer, but no prior mapping or computing experience is required. Instructor: Jack Dougherty. Enrollment Limit: 9.

ENGL 290. The Inaugural Address (Cancelled)
This course considers one of the most familiar traditions of American oratory—the presidential inaugural address—as a literary form. We will study some of the most acclaimed examples of this genre (including speeches by Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and John F. Kennedy), reading them closely, learning about the cultural and political contexts in which they were delivered, and considering their changing shape and function over time. Student projects will explore several less well-known inaugural addresses. By the conclusion of the course (January Term ends on the same day as the 58th Presidential Inauguration), students will be equipped to offer expert real-time analysis of the inaugural address of the 45th President of theUnitedStates.Instructor: Christopher Hager. Enrollment Limit: 15.

FREN 245. Writing & Filming Crime: Two Francophone Detective/Noir Novels & Their Cinematographic Adaptations
Conducted in English, this course will explore the detective and the noir genres exemplified in two major francophone novels and their cinematographic adaptations. After studying Henri-Georges Clouzot’s famous Jenny Lamour (Quai des orfêvres), we will read Georges Simenon’s The Saint-Fiacre Affair and Jean-Patrick Manchette’s The Prone Gunman, and analyze their screen interpretations. Emphasis will be placed upon narratological, social and political analysis. For credit in French, students will be able to read the texts and write their essays in French. Instructor: Jean-Marc Kehres. Enrollment Limit: 15.

HFPR 215. Health and Wellness in Hartford (Cancelled)
This course will explore the health care system for the residents of Hartford including the public health and medical issues faced by the community. We will use the epidemiological data from the Community Health Assessment to learn that patient and community well-being is based on both medical care and social determinants of health. Through reading, case studies and field trips we will examine the impacts the medical delivery system, poverty, housing, food, insurance and income have on health inequities. Students will develop a community action plan to improve the wellness in the neighborhood surrounding Trinity College. Instructor: Maryann McGuire. Enrollment Limit: 15.

LACS 233.  The Godfather: The Art of Hard Choices (FULL)
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.

LACS 273. Mediterranean Sea: From Ancient Relics to Present "Derelicts"
This course will focus on the history and the representation of the Mediterranean Sea throughout the centuries. Students will discover the difference between the classical image of the Mediterranean – as a trade route, a place of encounter and interaction -- and the contemporary situation of human tragedies occurring on the sea and its shores. From Strabo’s geographical description of the Mediterranean shores to the works of the contemporary Italophone writers, students will study, among other concepts, the causes and consequences of migration, integration, diaspora, transculturalism, national and multiple identities. Instructor: Martina di Florio Gula. Enrollment Limit: 15.

PHIL 229. Animal Ethics
This course will focus on the philosophical and ethical issues surrounding our relationships with non-human animals. Through reading a number of philosophical and literary texts, students will be asked to reflectively consider the effects that our way of living has on various other species with whom we share this world. This course will contain graphic textual, photographic, and cinematic material. Instructor: Shane Ewegen. Enrollment Limit: 15.
POLS 244. Envisioning Yourself as a Leader
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.

PSYC 224. Mindful Relationships in Education
What is attunement and why is it important for learning? How does self-regulation develop?  Why do some students seem to be taking fewer academic risks?  We will consider these questions and more as we examine the impact of the teacher-student relationship on learning and well-being.  We will examine various development periods (early childhood, school aged children, adolescents and young adults) and various educational settings (primary, secondary, college and post graduate education).  Through case studies and experiential exercises, we will apply theory from developmental and educational psychology and research from social neuroscience to practices in the classroom. Instructor: Susan Averna. Enrollment Limit: 15.

RELG 222. Voodoo, Zombies, and the Conjured Dead

This course focuses on those religious traditions known as Vodún in West Africa, Vodou in Haiti, and Voodoo in the Mississippi Valley. 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. After gaining an understanding of Voodoo theology and practice, students 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 as well as with theories of globalization, transnationalism, diaspora, and urban religious expansion. Instructor: Timothy Landry. Enrollment Limit: 15.

RHET 215. Writing the Personal Essay (Cancelled)
What makes an excellent personal essay work?  We’ll explore this question as both readers and writers.  In response to essays by Zadie Smith, Phillip Lopate, D.F. Wallace, and others, you’ll engage with the class in daily reflective writings and discussions.  At the same time, you will be working on your own piece—by the end of the course you will have written, revised, and polished a 7-10 page personal essay. Instructor: Irene Papoulis. 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? This viewpoint addresses challenges to reported statistics regarding the scope of the problem; the social construction of masculinity and femininity; rape-prone versus rape-free campus cultures; sexual consent and coercion; and victim-blaming. In addition to data and theory, this course also includes a praxis or preventative action component, whereby students learn about the bystander effect and how to intervene in such situations. Overall, we consider the strengths and limitations of this prevention model and other sexual assault prevention programs. 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.


Trinity in Paris - January 3-12, 2017

HIST 237. The History of French Wine*
This course introduces the history of French wine.  Students will gain a critical, contextualised understanding of how French wine has evolved over the past three centuries and made its mark on French culture, society and politics.  This short, intense course is taught in Paris and incorporates the city experientially.  Classes will be divided into short taught sections, in-depth discussions of primary and secondary literature, and three excursions: a professional wine tasting emphasising regional differences in France and the concept of terroir; a visit to a working vineyard to highlight the technical and spatial aspects of wine production; and a visit to a wine museum to explore the evolution of wine through material culture.  Assessment is through four short papers, a quiz and a final exam. Instructor: Jennifer Regan-Lefebvre. Enrollment Limit: 15

POLS 209. The Future of the European Union after the Brexit Vote*
The outcome of the referendum held in the United Kingdom on June 23, in which British citizens decided to leave the European Union (EU), commonly referred to as Brexit, has far reaching economical and political consequences. This course will offer students the opportunity to engage with the ongoing debate over the future of the European Union following this vote. This course will alternate between short lectures, visits, workshops, and debates. The course will introduce students to current debates on institutions, public opinion, economy, security, and transatlantic relationship. As a center for debates on the EU, Paris is a key location for studying European politics. Students will engage with EU and French officials about the subject during visits to the European Commission’s delegation to France and to the French National Assembly. Instructor: Thomas Lefebvre. Enrollment Limit: 15

 Trinity in Trinidad - January 7-15, 2017 updated

TNTB 210. Environmental Sustainability in the Caribbean: Trinidad & Tobago as a Case Study*
Using Trinidad & Tobago as a case study, this J-term course examines sustainable development and environmental protection in the Caribbean.  Students consider how colonialism, remoteness, ecological fragility, poverty, and global competition present challenges to Caribbean nations seeking to develop dynamic and inclusive economies while also protecting the environment.  Can external investment be balanced with long-term stewardship of natural resources?  Do mass tourism and resource extraction produce lasting benefits for local people?  How does public awareness and institutional capacity affect policymaking?  Which creative approaches to conservation show the most promise?  Is the region prepared to address the risks posed by climate change?  Students explore these questions through select readings, discussions, guest speakers, and site visits to locations within Trinidad &Tobago. Instructor: Joseph Chambers. Enrollment Limit: 8

Trip to Nepal - December 30 - January 18, 2017

HIST 254. Peoples and Cultures of Nepal*
This course will focus on the people of Upper Mustang in Nepal. Readings will be tied to the histories and traditions of the Tibetan, Thakali, and Gurung people who form the population of this isolated region. The course will be built around a two and a half week trek in the Mustang region. Grades will derive from a ten to twelve page paper formed around a topic tied to the themes of the course.  Instructor: Michael Lestz. Enrollment Limit: 15

*Courses offered abroad have additional fees. Please contact instructor for details.