Skip Navigation LinksHome / Academics / Undergraduate Academics / Course Catalog

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

 
  1 2   

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

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

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)

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

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

INTRODUCTION TO WESTERN CULTURE(HIS)

CVA2411 Introduction to Western Culture 4 credit (Intermediate Liberal Arts) This cultural history course explores rational and non-rational ways of knowing in the Western tradition. We look at literature and art to focus upon four moments in the history of the West where these antithetical tendencies are conspicuous: Ancient Greece; the High Middle Ages; Europe during the Reformation and the Scientific Revolution; and the Early 20th Century. We read Greek tragedies by Aeschylus and Euripides, medieval romances such as Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, and contemporary plays about the lives of Galileo and Luther. Essays by Freud and Jung frame our discussions. Prerequisites: RHT I & II and Foundation (H&S and A&H) or AHS This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Spring or Fall

LATIN AMERICAN HIST (HIS)

HSS2003 Latin American History (Intermediate Liberal Arts) This course will be an introduction to the main themes, actors, and ideas in Latin American history. The central focus will be on Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean, with an attempt to develop a comparative understanding of the Latin America's diversity, as well as common patterns, from pre-Columbian times to the present. In other words, this course is not an exhaustive history of Latin America; rather, it intends to develop familiarity with key concepts, developments, and issues in the region's history. Prerequisites: RHT I & II and Foundation (H&S and A&H) or AHS This course is typically offered in the following semester: Fall

MAKING OF MODERN AMERICA (HIS)

HSS2000 The Making of Modern America, 1865-1929 4 credit (Intermediate Liberal Arts) The decade of the 1920s witnessed the birth of much of that we consider "modern" in the United States. Students in this course will examine this decade closely, focusing on several key moments and developments: anti-immigrant hysteria and the Braintree, Massachusetts trial of Sacco and Vanzetti; the rise of queer communities; competing visions of Black Liberation and the art of the Harlem Renaissance; the rise of big business, the decline of small town America, and the mass appeal of the Ku Klux Klan; women and men and their roles in the new economies of sex and work. We will use historical sources, among them film and fiction, to explore the currents of the twenties and draw connections to the social and political debates of the contemporary U.S. Prerequisites: RHT I & II and Foundation (H&S and A&H) or AHS

MEDIA STUDIES (MDS)

HSS2020 Media Studies (4 credit Intermediate Liberal Arts) This course explores the structure and functions of the mass media in contemporary society, looking at social, cultural, economic and political issues relevant to television, film, radio, recorded music, books, newspapers, magazines, internet and new communication technologies. Exploration of relationships between media and individual, media structure, media policy, law and ethics, and globalization of communications media is emphasized. Prerequisites: RHT I & II and Foundation (H&S and A&H) or AHS This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Spring or Fall

MEDIA STUDIES(MDS)

HSS2020 Media Studies (4 credit Intermediate Liberal Arts) This course explores the structure and functions of the mass media in contemporary society, looking at social, cultural, economic and political issues relevant to television, film, radio, recorded music, books, newspapers, magazines, internet and new communication technologies. Exploration of relationships between media and individual, media structure, media policy, law and ethics, and globalization of communications media is emphasized. Prerequisites: RHT I & II and Foundation (H&S and A&H) or AHS This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Spring or Fall

WATER IN AMERICA

Please note begin and end dates - This course will take place during the second half of the semester AMS3605 Water in America 2-credit advanced level course Water has shaped the development of America. America is what it is and Americans are where they are as a result of decisions that have involved water resources. Students in this advanced level Liberal Arts elective course will examine water issues in America and how that resource has shaped our settlement, history, economy, environment, transportation and politics. We will discuss water shortages and water wars in the West; the development and impact of the Erie Canal; the clean-up of Boston Harbor and other dirty stories; and the Bureau of Land Management and how it dammed the West. We will use great non-fiction writing and compelling films to explore the difficult choices America has faced and to examine how water issues have impacted Americans. Last but not least, we will investigate the environmental and sustainability challenges we are facing today and tomorrow. Prerequisites: Three Intermediate liberal arts (HSS, CVA, LVA)

WOMEN'S STUDIES

GDR3610 Topics in Women's Studies (Advanced Liberal Arts) This course provides a forum to examine and discuss contemporary women's and girls' roles and positions. The course will address the following topics: first and second waves of feminism, sexuality, psycho-social influences on gender construction, paid work and structures of inequality, women and social protest and family configurations. At the beginning of the course, we will read some historic documents as background to the women's movement in the United States. Although the main focus will be on women and girls in the United States, we will also discuss women's positions in other countries as well. Because femininity and images of women are balanced, and often countered, by masculinity and images of men, we will spend time discussing men in relation to women. Integral to this course is recognition of how race, class, ethnicity and sexuality converge to influence how women negotiate their political, social and cultural roles. Finally, we will attempt to become "enlightened witnesses" to the social construction of femininity and masculinity, and use our understanding to notice stereotypical portrayals as well as new, liberating images of women and men. Prerequisites: 3 Intermediate Liberal Arts Courses (CVA, LVA, HSS) This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Spring or Fall

WWI AT 100:HISTORY, LITERATURE AND FILM

HIS3614 World War One at 100 (1914-2014): History, Literature and Film 4-credit Advanced Liberal Arts “The Great War"; "a war to end all war"; "a war to make the world safe for democracy"; the beginning of "total war"... and then, "a peace to end all peace"!! Or, as others described it: "the great seminal catastrophe of [the 20th] century"; and "the first calamity of the twentieth century... from which all other calamities sprang." Today, 100 years from the outbreak of WWI, most students of history and politics trace directly, or consequentially, the Russian Revolution and the rise of the Soviet Union, Fascism, Nazism and WW II, The Cold War, the beginning of the end of Imperialism, the rise of Asian, African and Middle Eastern independence and nationalist movements, modern Turkey, Iraq, Syria, Israel and Palestine, Islamic fundamentalism, the Arab Spring of 2011, and the present Syrian Civil War to World War One!! Wow! So... how to work to understand such a momentous event and use our understanding to know ourselves and our contemporary world better? We will lean about the origins and process of the war; we will read novels, memoirs and poetry of English, French and German soldiers who fought in the war; we will look at films from across the 20th century that explored the war and will read some modern literature that looks back at WWI to help explore contemporary personal, cultural and political issues. Finally, each student will choose a particular area of interest to explore and share with the class. Prerequisites: Three Intermediate liberal arts (HSS, CVA, LVA)

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)

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

HEALTH DISPARITIES & MINRTY HEALTH IN US

HSS2436 Health Disparities and Minority Health in the US (POL) 3 credit intermediate liberal arts This course will provide an overview of minority health and health disparities in the US through a critical analysis of the historical, socio-economic, political, cultural, environmental, and social conditions that contribute to disparities. Students will delve deeply into the dynamics and politics of health disparities using current literature. Emphasis is placed on the cultural, social, and policy issues that impact the health of vulnerable populations and the mechanisms by which they do so. By the end of the course, students will be able to understand the magnitude of health disparities from a political, historical, socio-economic, and environmental perspective and the government’s role in health disparities. Students will become both informed about the status of minority health in the US and inspired to end the disparities gap. Prerequisites: Foundation AHF/AHS and Rhetoric A & B or I & II

AGE AND GENERATIONS (SOC)

HSS2437 Aging and Generations (SOC) 3 credit intermediate liberal arts This course seeks to understand the life course in its social context. Specifically, it examines how our age, developmental stage, historical period and generation help to fundamentally shape the road we travel through life. Focus will be given to different stages of the life course, with special attention to adolescence and young adulthood. The relationship between and among generations will be examined, including the millennial generation, Gen X, and the baby boomers. Key to the course will be an analysis of how historical and social factors impact generational change and life course development. The course will also highlight how social inequalities of gender, race, and class influence lives over time. Prerequisites: Foundation AHF/AHS and Rht A and B (or RHT 1 & II)

CULTURAL HISTORY OF AMERICAN BUSINESS

HIS3606 The Cultural History of American Business 4 credits (Advanced Liberal Arts) How have generations of Americans used business to define their ambitions and identities? How has commerce influenced the nation's mythology and ideals? What are the social and personal costs of the U.S.'s veneration of the marketplace? In this advanced-level history course, students will examine how business has shaped American culture and society. Selected subjects for the class include the rise of the corporation, the icons of American business, the power and politics of consumption, ethnic and immigrant entrepreneurship, and the role of the marketplace in the nation's economic and cultural development. Prerequisites: 3 Intermediate Liberal Arts (CVA, LVA & HSS) This course is typically offered in the following semesters: Spring

CULTURE, SOCIETY & EPS IN DEVELOP ECN

  1 2