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Course Catalog

The Course Catalog includes course descriptions of all courses offered by the Undergraduate School at Babson College. For descriptions of the courses offered in the current or upcoming semesters, please see the Course Listing.

 

 Undergraduate Course Catalog

 
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History & Society

AFR AMERICAN HISTORY AND FOODWAYS(HIS)

CVA2002 African American History and Foodways (HIS) 4 credit intermediate liberal arts The course covers the major periods, movements, and events that have shaped African American history and foodways. These include: the African slave trade; antebellum period; the civil war and reconstruction; World War I and the great migration; Harlem Renaissance and Garveyism; Great Depression; Spanish Civil War and World War II; Civil Rights and Black Power movements; industrialization, the growth of the prison industrial complex, and the "war on drugs." The course will also include content on African American foodways from the African slave trade to the Black Power movement. Classes discuss the assigned reading with lively student participation. Out-of-class work includes readings, online exams, attending lectures, artistic presentations, and films, as well as independent research. Prerequisites, RHT I & II and (AH & HS) or AHS

AFR AMERICAN HISTORY AND FOODWAYS(HIS)

CVA2002 African American History and Foodways (HIS) 4 credit intermediate liberal arts The course covers the major periods, movements, and events that have shaped African American history and foodways. These include: the African slave trade; antebellum period; the civil war and reconstruction; World War I and the great migration; Harlem Renaissance and Garveyism; Great Depression; Spanish Civil War and World War II; Civil Rights and Black Power movements; industrialization, the growth of the prison industrial complex, and the "war on drugs." The course will also include content on African American foodways from the African slave trade to the Black Power movement. Classes discuss the assigned reading with lively student participation. Out-of-class work includes readings, online exams, attending lectures, artistic presentations, and films, as well as independent research. Prerequisites, RHT I & II and (AH & HS) or AHS

C.I.A. IN ASIA

HIS3630 C.I.A In Asia 4 credit advanced liberal arts We will examine the ways in which CIA actions affected the internal and external dynamics of various countries in west, central south, southeastern and east Asia, in order to explore the beneficial and detrimental impact of their operations in Asia during the Cold War. The class will explore how CIA actions during the Cold War shaped the current geo-political and economic dynamics of Asia, in particular; the political unrest in Iran, the lawlessness and violence and Afghanistan, and the debate of CIA complicity in the heroin trade. We will use a variety of books, articles, documents, and films to understand this complex, politically sensitive and volatile history. Prerequisites: 3 intermediate liberal arts (LVA, CVA, HSS)

CHINA TODAY(HIS)

HSS2013 China Today: The Dragon Rises 4 credit intermediate liberal arts This intermediate history course will introduce you to China’s dynamic present within the context of the complex legacy of the Chinese past. We will examine the historical, cultural, political, and economic development of post 1949 China, with brief introductions to relevant aspects of the imperial past. You will gain a nuanced appreciation for the incredible economic growth of China from 1990 to the present, and the concomitant problems of state-society relations, human rights, minority relations, the environment, and the gaps between the rich and the poor and the urban and rural citizens. We will take advantage of Boston’s resources through site visits to view Chinese art, undertake a scavenger hunt in Chinatown, and enjoy Chinese food. We will explore China through the use of scholarship, fiction, maps, memoir, art, film, and music. Prerequisites: RHT I & II & Foundation (A&H and H&S) or AHS

CHINA TODAY(HIS)

HSS2013 China Today: The Dragon Rises 4 credit intermediate liberal arts This intermediate history course will introduce you to China’s dynamic present within the context of the complex legacy of the Chinese past. We will examine the historical, cultural, political, and economic development of post 1949 China, with brief introductions to relevant aspects of the imperial past. You will gain a nuanced appreciation for the incredible economic growth of China from 1990 to the present, and the concomitant problems of state-society relations, human rights, minority relations, the environment, and the gaps between the rich and the poor and the urban and rural citizens. We will take advantage of Boston’s resources through site visits to view Chinese art, undertake a scavenger hunt in Chinatown, and enjoy Chinese food. We will explore China through the use of scholarship, fiction, maps, memoir, art, film, and music. Prerequisites: RHT I & II & Foundation (A&H and H&S) or AHS

COLD WAR AND ESPIONAGE LIT

HIS3609 Espionage, Subversion, and Terror: Spy Literature and the Cold War 4 credit Advanced Liberal Arts The 20th century was obsessed with spying, and since WWII it has become institutionalized and professionalized. The clandestine has always been an important part of war, politics and commerce, but during the 20th century it became an end in itself. Spy literature represents intrigue and the clandestine, espionage and subversion, as the human condition. It presents an amoral world characterized by voyeurism, role anxiety, disguise and alienation, and invites an identification with the spy out in the cold; it plays upon our sense of isolation in a bureaucratic world, our lack of control. The spy is us, in an enemy world, always already betrayed. In this class we will read espionage literature that explores these moral issues within the geopolitical and ideological contexts of the Cold War. Prerequisites: 3 Intermediate Liberal Arts (HSS, LVA, CVA)

COMPARATIVE POLITICS (POL)

HSS2033 Comparative Politics 4 credit intermediate liberal arts This course serves as an introduction to the field of comparative politics, a field whose definition is subject to considerable debate. For some, it is determined by method. For others, it more broadly denotes the study of political phenomena that occurs within states. Still others just think of it as the study of foreign countries. This course will incorporate all of these perspectives in the pursuit of several goals. This class is designed for you to learn in what ways and why politics in other states looks so different from the United States and/or your own country, introduce you to the basic arguments in some important political debates (including economic policies, identity issues, institutional design, and development), and provide some tools to think more critically about various political claims and proposals. Prequisites: RHT & Foundation AH HS (AHS)

CRITICAL RACE STUDIES

POL3630 Critical Race Studies 4 credit advanced liberal arts What is race? Where does the idea come from and how has the concept in practice changed over time? How does race shape historical and contemporary social and political life in the United States, and beyond? How do we, and how can we, talk about race today? These are just a few of the general questions we attend to in this Advanced Liberal Arts Course on Critical Race Studies. Critical race studies is a multi-disciplinary field that analyzes historical and contemporary racial formations, hierarchies, and politics. The presumption of a critical race studies approach is that racial inequality and injustice are not consigned to a long distant American past, but still shape present day political, social, economic, and cultural life in fundamental ways. In other words, we do not live in a post-racial society. The readings for the course generally stem from scholarly work in the fields of political theory and American politics, as well as from well-known authors and activists such as James Baldwin and Angela Davis. The course will also attend to the intersections among race, class, gender, sexuality, and colonialism, including reading works by Marxist, feminist, queer theory, and Indigenous studies scholars. The class will be run in a participatory, seminar format in which students will develop individual class projects from a wide-range of potential topics. In the past, students in this course have completed projects that focus on the relevance of race to such topics as political movements and campaigns, legal decisions, film, sports, gender, fashion, sexuality, business, and science. Prerequisites: Three intermediate liveral artw (CVA, LVA, HSS)

CRITICAL RACE STUDIES

POL3630 Critical Race Studies 4 credit advanced liberal arts What is race? Where does the idea come from and how has the concept in practice changed over time? How does race shape historical and contemporary social and political life in the United States, and beyond? How do we, and how can we, talk about race today? These are just a few of the general questions we attend to in this Advanced Liberal Arts Course on Critical Race Studies. Critical race studies is a multi-disciplinary field that analyzes historical and contemporary racial formations, hierarchies, and politics. The presumption of a critical race studies approach is that racial inequality and injustice are not consigned to a long distant American past, but still shape present day political, social, economic, and cultural life in fundamental ways. In other words, we do not live in a post-racial society. The readings for the course generally stem from scholarly work in the fields of political theory and American politics, as well as from well-known authors and activists such as James Baldwin and Angela Davis. The course will also attend to the intersections among race, class, gender, sexuality, and colonialism, including reading works by Marxist, feminist, queer theory, and Indigenous studies scholars. The class will be run in a participatory, seminar format in which students will develop individual class projects from a wide-range of potential topics. In the past, students in this course have completed projects that focus on the relevance of race to such topics as political movements and campaigns, legal decisions, film, sports, gender, fashion, sexuality, business, and science. Prerequisites: Three intermediate liberal arts (CVA, LVA, HSS)

CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY (ANT)

CVA2408 Cultural Anthropology (Intermediate Liberal Arts) Introduction to Cultural Anthropology is a three-credit intermediate History and Society course. The central focus of this course is the phenomenon of culture, that remarkable accomplishment that makes humans unique among all other species. We will use the concept of culture to investigate the question of what it means to be human. A major area of focus will be upon the ways cultural meanings are generated, shared, symbolized, ritualized, contested and altered in the face of different types of challenges. We will also study the relationship of cultural meaning to different economic, kinship and political systems. Throughout the course, as we study a variety of unfamiliar societies, we will continually refer back to our own societies with the goal of looking at our own ways of doing things with a new frame of mind. This frame of mind, or anthropological perspective, searches for the internal logics and constellations of values and beliefs that underpin all societies and subcultures. Central to this course is a succession of small fieldwork projects. This course will particularly strengthen your multicultural and rhetorical competencies Prerequisites: RHT and Foundation H&S and A&H This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Fall

CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY (ANT)

CVA2408 Cultural Anthropology (Intermediate Liberal Arts) Introduction to Cultural Anthropology is a three-credit intermediate History and Society course. The central focus of this course is the phenomenon of culture, that remarkable accomplishment that makes humans unique among all other species. We will use the concept of culture to investigate the question of what it means to be human. A major area of focus will be upon the ways cultural meanings are generated, shared, symbolized, ritualized, contested and altered in the face of different types of challenges. We will also study the relationship of cultural meaning to different economic, kinship and political systems. Throughout the course, as we study a variety of unfamiliar societies, we will continually refer back to our own societies with the goal of looking at our own ways of doing things with a new frame of mind. This frame of mind, or anthropological perspective, searches for the internal logics and constellations of values and beliefs that underpin all societies and subcultures. Central to this course is a succession of small fieldwork projects. This course will particularly strengthen your multicultural and rhetorical competencies Prerequisites: RHT and Foundation H&S and A&H This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Fall

CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY (ANT)

CVA2408 Cultural Anthropology (Intermediate Liberal Arts) Introduction to Cultural Anthropology is a three-credit intermediate History and Society course. The central focus of this course is the phenomenon of culture, that remarkable accomplishment that makes humans unique among all other species. We will use the concept of culture to investigate the question of what it means to be human. A major area of focus will be upon the ways cultural meanings are generated, shared, symbolized, ritualized, contested and altered in the face of different types of challenges. We will also study the relationship of cultural meaning to different economic, kinship and political systems. Throughout the course, as we study a variety of unfamiliar societies, we will continually refer back to our own societies with the goal of looking at our own ways of doing things with a new frame of mind. This frame of mind, or anthropological perspective, searches for the internal logics and constellations of values and beliefs that underpin all societies and subcultures. Central to this course is a succession of small fieldwork projects. This course will particularly strengthen your multicultural and rhetorical competencies Prerequisites: RHT and Foundation H&S and A&H This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Fall

DECOLONIZATION & REVOLU 20TH CENT(HIS)

HSS2025 Decolonization and Revolution in the 20th Century Intermediate 4-credit The 20th Century is viewed by most historians as the most violent and tempestuous century in human history. In particular, this narrative is largely dominated by the two great wars and the Cold War. However, what made those conflicts so important was not just their impact on Europe and the Western World, but how those conflicts catalyzed mass movements globally. This class examines the history of decolonization and revolution in the 20th Century, and how the world wars and the Cold War impacted processes of nationalism, independence, decolonization and revolution. Starting with the rise of Turkey and the Bolshevik revolution during the first world war, we will then analyze the independence movements that sprouted from the vestiges of the second world war, particularly those of China and India, as well as the emergence of Apartheid in South Africa. We will also explore the impact of the Cold War on revolution and decolonization, especially Vietnam and Algeria. Finally, the course will analyze how more recent revolutions, such as those in Iran and Israel /Palestine, are rooted in longer historical processes which highlight the continuing legacy of Imperialism and revolutionary resistance to imperialism in the contemporary world. The course will use a variety of books, articles, movies, and music to analyze this deep, violent, and often conflicted aspect of human history. Pre-requisites: RHT I & II and Foundation (H&S and A&H) or AHS

DECOLONIZATION & REVOLUTION 20 CENT(HIS)

HSS2025 Decolonization and Revolution in the 20th Century Intermediate 4-credit The 20th Century is viewed by most historians as the most violent and tempestuous century in human history. In particular, this narrative is largely dominated by the two great wars and the Cold War. However, what made those conflicts so important was not just their impact on Europe and the Western World, but how those conflicts catalyzed mass movements globally. This class examines the history of decolonization and revolution in the 20th Century, and how the world wars and the Cold War impacted processes of nationalism, independence, decolonization and revolution. Starting with the rise of Turkey and the Bolshevik revolution during the first world war, we will then analyze the independence movements that sprouted from the vestiges of the second world war, particularly those of China and India, as well as the emergence of Apartheid in South Africa. We will also explore the impact of the Cold War on revolution and decolonization, especially Vietnam and Algeria. Finally, the course will analyze how more recent revolutions, such as those in Iran and Israel /Palestine, are rooted in longer historical processes which highlight the continuing legacy of Imperialism and revolutionary resistance to imperialism in the contemporary world. The course will use a variety of books, articles, movies, and music to analyze this deep, violent, and often conflicted aspect of human history. Pre-requisites: RHT I & II and Foundation (H&S and A&H) or AHS

DRUGS AND INTOXICANTS IN WRLD HIST

HIS3612 Drugs and Intoxicants in World History 4 credit advanced liberal arts Course Description: This course will examine the role of drugs and intoxicants in World History; their use as spiritual and medicinal tools, as key devices in economic capitalist expansion, and eventually their role as a divisive political and economic issue in contemporary politics. The course begins by examining the importance of stimulants such as tea, sugar, coffee and opium to the expansion of free trade and global capitalism in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The course analyzes the shifts to prohibition, particularly the suppression of the global drug trade as justification for the expansion of American empire, and the US-led “War on Drugs” and its relationship with the expansion of the global drug trade. We will also address contemporary issues regarding the war on drugs in Mexico and narco-terrorism in Afghanistan. We will use a variety of books, articles, documents, and films to understand this rich, complex, and often misunderstood history. Prerequisites: Three intermediate liberal Arts (HSS LVA CVA)

EAST ASIAN CULTURES (HIS)

CVA2009 East Asian Cultures (Intermediate Liberal Arts) Welcome to Cultures and Values 2009, an intermediate level Liberal Arts course which will introduce you to the cultures of East Asia. This course builds on the themes and techniques in the H&S and A&H Foundation courses to analyze our subject using the materials and methodology of history pursued in an interdisciplinary manner. We will focus on the cultures of East Asia, China, Japan, and Korea; with thematic examples from ancient, medieval and modern periods. East Asia is integrated due to location and the influence that China had on the cultures of Japan and Korea. We will begin our study with the major ways of thinking in ancient China-Confucianism, Daoism, Buddhism, with some consideration of Legalism, and Militarism. The ethical structures, ideas, concepts and vocabulary in part one will inform and be assumed in our study of Japan and Korea. We will next study the uses of Chinese Ethics in Japan and Korea, Shinto in Japan, and Shamanism in Korea. Although these three cultures have elements in common, Japan and Korea developed in unique ways and in no way should be seen as pale imitations of Chinese culture. We begin our study analyzing written (Chinese) classical texts, which became classics throughout East Asia. These are elite cultural documents, but we will also consider their impact on popular culture. The fourth section of the course will consider East Asia as a cultural unit. We will interrogate the cultural constructions of identity and meaning in these cultures and the political and social contexts in which these were found. We will consider the impact of modernization and globalization, and the change and continuity within East Asian cultures. Some attention will be given to the cultural impact from and on the West. We approach this course through readings in philosophy, religion, anthropology, art, literature, film, and music. Prerequisites: RHT and Foundation H&S and A&H This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Spring or Summer

EAST ASIAN CULTURES (HIS)

CVA2009 East Asian Cultures (Intermediate Liberal Arts) Welcome to Cultures and Values 2009, an intermediate level Liberal Arts course which will introduce you to the cultures of East Asia. This course builds on the themes and techniques in the H&S and A&H Foundation courses to analyze our subject using the materials and methodology of history pursued in an interdisciplinary manner. We will focus on the cultures of East Asia, China, Japan, and Korea; with thematic examples from ancient, medieval and modern periods. East Asia is integrated due to location and the influence that China had on the cultures of Japan and Korea. We will begin our study with the major ways of thinking in ancient China-Confucianism, Daoism, Buddhism, with some consideration of Legalism, and Militarism. The ethical structures, ideas, concepts and vocabulary in part one will inform and be assumed in our study of Japan and Korea. We will next study the uses of Chinese Ethics in Japan and Korea, Shinto in Japan, and Shamanism in Korea. Although these three cultures have elements in common, Japan and Korea developed in unique ways and in no way should be seen as pale imitations of Chinese culture. We begin our study analyzing written (Chinese) classical texts, which became classics throughout East Asia. These are elite cultural documents, but we will also consider their impact on popular culture. The fourth section of the course will consider East Asia as a cultural unit. We will interrogate the cultural constructions of identity and meaning in these cultures and the political and social contexts in which these were found. We will consider the impact of modernization and globalization, and the change and continuity within East Asian cultures. Some attention will be given to the cultural impact from and on the West. We approach this course through readings in philosophy, religion, anthropology, art, literature, film, and music. Prerequisites: RHT and Foundation H&S and A&H This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Spring or Summer

FOOD AND THE AFRICAN AMER CANON

This course will be delivered via WebEx. CVA2490 Food and the African American Canon 3 credit intermediate liberal arts This 3 credit history and foodways course discusses food and space in restaurants, dining cars, street venders and wherever food is made and sold (by whom), and eaten (by whom) at the center. The course will include readings in James Weldon Johnson’s The Autobiography of a Colored Man, Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man, Zora Hurston's Their Eyes Where Watching God, John Washington's The Chaneysville Incident, Paule Marshall's classic essay From The Poets in the Kitchen, and Richard Wright's Man of All Work. Readings on segregated restaurants come from James Baldwin’s Notes of a Native Son, and in No Name in the Street. A chapter on Ntzoake Shange's novel, Sassafrass, Cypress, and Indigo and her novel Liliane. Prerequisites: RHT and AHF or AHS Foundation

FOOD AND THE AFRICAN AMER CANON

CVA2490 Food and the African American Canon 3 credit intermediate liberal arts This course discusses food and eateries in restaurants and dining cars, by street vendors and more—anyplace food is made, sold, and eaten¬—particularly pertaining to noted works in the African American canon: James Weldon Johnson’s The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man; Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man; Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God; James Baldwin’s Notes of a Native Son and No Name in the Street; and Ntozake Shange’s Sassafrass, Cypress, and Indigo: A Novel. This course will take place online via WebEx. Prerequisites: RHT (A & B) or (I & II) and (AHF & AHS) or AHS Foundation

GENDER STUDIES (GDR)

CVA2010 Gender Studies 4 credit (Intermediate Liberal Arts) This course provides an interdisciplinary introduction to gender studies. Designed as an intermediate course, Introduction to Gender Studies aims to identify and critically examine the interactive relationships among gender, cultural/social institutions, and individuals in contemporary American society. This implies two foci of attention. First, through readings and discussion, we will explore gender roles and resulting power inequities in contexts such as families, the music industry, conceptions of both race and sexuality, and novels. Equally important, we will analyze how the behaviors of individuals reflect, sustain and sometimes alter social conceptions of gender. In concert, these two emphases serve to underline the relationships among gender, culture, and individuals. Prerequisites: RHT I & II and Foundation (H&S and A&H) or AHS This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Spring, Summer or Fall
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