FALL 2019 GRADUATE COURSE LISTINGS
- ALL COURSES ARE RESTRICTED AND REQUIRE AN ACCESS CODE TO REGISTER.
- If you are NOT an SCA graduate student, but wish to enroll in a course, you must FIRST contact the professor requesting permission to enroll and then the graduate program coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- SCA graduate courses (unless otherwise noted) are located at 20 Cooper Square, 4th Floor.
PROSEMINAR IN AFRICANA STUDIES – AFRS-GA 2000.001
Seminar Room – 485
(Requirement for 1st year AFRICANA MA students)
This course is an in-depth overview of the major areas of research in black history and culture. It is intended to introduce incoming Africana Studies M.A. students to the significant areas of research, research questions, as well as the primary methods of inquiry that have defined the study of black culture and history since the mid-nineteenth century. Topics include: Negritude, The Harlem Renaissance, Pan-Africanism, Race & Urban Poverty, Black Feminism, Black Social Movements and Literature and Decolonization. It will be a course that is led and directed by one of our faculty members, but will feature guest lectures/presentations by Africana specialists. Each faculty will present in their areas of expertise.
AMERICAN STUDIES SEMINAR - AMST-GA 3301.001
Conference Room -471
(Requirement for 1st year SCA MA and PhD students)
In this introductory graduate seminar, we will review classic texts in American studies, models of intersectional scholarship, and new work addressed to new publics in the field of American Studies, broadly defined. We’ll examine the shifting intellectual parameters and political interventions of American Studies scholarship. Some of the questions we will address include: What theoretical frameworks and methodological approaches have shaped the field? How has the field intersected with other institutionally insurgent interdisciplinary fields, including (but not limited to) feminist and queer studies, labor studies, comparative ethnic and diaspora studies, environmental studies, native and dis/ability studies?
QUEER STUDIES NOW – AMST-GA 2305.001
Conference Room -471
It's been twenty years since the publication of José Estéban Muñoz’s Disidentifications: Queers of Color and the Performance of Politics placed racialization squarely at the center of a queer studies project and inaugurated the field of what we now call queer of color critique. This course looks back at Muñoz’s paradigm-shifting work and takes stock at where the field of queer studies is now. We consider key works in queer studies that set the stage for Muñoz’s intervention, and look forwards to consider the ways in which the field of queer studies has transformed and shifted in the ensuing two decades. This course will introduce students to different genealogies of the field, while paying particular attention to questions of aesthetics, visual art, and performance.
THE BLACK BODY & THE LENS – AFRS-GA 2303.001
Conference Room -471
This interdisciplinary seminar explores the range of ideas and methods used by critical thinkers in addressing the body in photography, print, video, film and exhibition spaces. Central to our discussions will be a focus on how the display of the black female body affects how we see and interpret the world; and the world sees us. Using a series of documentary films, we will consider the construction of beauty and style, gendered images, identity, race, black women activists as icons, music, and popular culture. The historical gaze has profoundly determined the visual construction of black women in contemporary society such as figures like Angela Davis, Carrie Mae Weems, Lorna Simpson, Ida B. Wells, Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth and Beyonce. This course is designed with two objectives: to introduce students to the theory and practice of the field of black visual studies and to familiarize them with the work of activists, scholars and artists working in this area. The practice of black visual studies entails the critical evaluation of images in multiple realms of culture: migration, art, new media, activism, medical humanities, politics and commerce.
For thirteen weeks students will investigate formal and conceptual components of images, as well as issues of image-reception and agency. The interplay between the historical and the contemporary, between self-presentation and imposed representation--all are fundamental to our discussions. This seminar will also explore the ways in which our contemporary understanding of art, history, politics, and culture are constructed and informed by public display in museums, text, and the global landscape. In addition to classes held on campus, field trips will be taken to lectures, museums and galleries in order to further interrogate the intersections between biography, photography, film, history, politics and visual culture.
TOPICS: AMERICANIST APPROACHES TO THE STUDY OF PALESTINE – AMST-GA 3213.001
Conference Room -471
This seminar will meet together with Jasbir Puar’s Performance Studies seminar of the same name to explore the ways that Americanist scholars have undertaken research, writing, and intellectual activism on Palestine and Palestinians. The course will be accompanied by a series of speakers addressing the history of settler colonialism, Black/Palestinian solidarities, transnational neoliberalism, international and human rights law, space and mobility, “humanitarian” aid, and journalism on Palestine and Palestinians.
SEMINAR AMERICAN STUDIES: RELIGION, AFFECT, & LAW IN THE UNITED STATES – AMST-GA 3302.001
Conference Room -471
This course is organized around two keywords -- “religion” and “affect” – and will make use of a series of legal cases (beginning with Reynolds v. United States, the Mormon “polygamy” case of 1878) and the dense history around them as a way to focus many of our units. Religious freedom is the first named freedom in the Bill of Rights to the US Constitution, but its meaning, extension, and limits remain unsettled. What is the relationship between disestablishment and free exercise, the two named components of religious freedom, and how are they linked, conceptually and in practice, to multiple norms of embodied life (including the embodied life of affect)? How to reconcile promises of religious freedom with the Christonormativity that is the baseline of U.S.law and public life? Readings will be drawn from critical studies of religion and secularism, legal studies, critical race studies, gender and sexuality studies, research on the history of emotion as well as recent work in affect studies. Although the class is primarily focused on the United States, over the course of the semester we will also consider how U.S. models of religious freedom travel globally.
READING THE GLOBAL SOUTH: UNEVEN DEVELOPMENT, CRITICAL GEOGRAPHY, AND ANTI-IMPERIAL THINKING – AMST-GA 2304.001 | COLIT-GA 2150.001
Wednesdays 11:00-1:45 PM
19 University Place – Rm 229
This course seeks to create a comparative ground for cultural politics typically separated by language, imperial histories, and neo-colonial maps. It takes up the cultural, political, historical and theoretical consequences and critiques of uneven development as an enduring truth of the global order. It engages the politics and economies of imperialism and the history and theory of anti-imperialism. We will consider the idea of the Global South as a topography of uneven development and uneven temporalities, where notions of modernity and periphery are affirmed and contested and where the names and practices of resistance, rebellion, and critique continue to engage not only metropolitan centers but the force of the state. The course looks beyond “area studies” definitions and seeks a materialist and critical geography, turning toward a hemispheric Southern critique that challenged empire, globalization, democratization, neoliberalism and permanent warfare long before the current political moment. We will trace the political and critical genealogies, the disciplinary canonizations, and the popular life of an indispensable contestatory archive—an archive whose long history helps to contextualize and demystify the geopolitics of the present, as well as the politics of the academy. The course is in part designed to comparatists and students of varied fields an interdisciplinary and historical knowledge of texts whose messy political engagements and materialist foundations have lately been rather marginalized by a reaffirmation of theoretical universals. We will consider how old ideological mappings like third world, underdevelopment, revolution survive and how old imperial and cold wars haunt new politicses and geopolitical destinies. The course traces themes and variations of a global anti-imperialism, its constituencies, and its critical strategies; it stresses how these contestatory narratives have irrevocably altered the cultural politics and cultural markets of international metropoli and international policy. It seeks also to distinguish “southern” contexts for struggles around feminism, race and labor, and to follow the trajectory of these struggles into a theoretical “mainstream”. Readings establish connections between nationalist struggles, critiques of hegemony, and resistant narratives, looking back over almost a century of foundational texts from Luxemburg to Gramsci, to Mariátegui, to Fanon and Memmi and connecting them to the work of writers as varied as Said, Chatterjee, García Canclini, Pratt, Spivak, Quijano, Jameson and Appadurai. The course will proceed thematically as a wide survey of history, criticism, and theory but always considering forms of cultural production that often precede and exceed theorization.