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Interdisciplinary Studies

Students may choose to major in an established interdisciplinary program supported by faculty committees or design an independent interdisciplinary major. Established programs are African American studies, American cultural studies, Asian studies, biological chemistry, classical and medieval studies, environmental studies, neuroscience, and women and gender studies. Students should consult the chairs of these programs for information about requirements and theses.

Students undertaking independent interdisciplinary majors should consult the section of the Catalog on the Academic Program (see page 20). Independent interdisciplinary majors are supported by the Committee on Curriculum and Calendar and students should consult the committee chair for information about requirements and theses.

Courses
INDS 208. Introduction to Medieval Archeology.The Middle Ages were a time of major cultural changes that laid the groundwork for Northwest Europe's emergence as a global center of political and economic power in subsequent centuries. However, many aspects of life in the period from 1000 to 1500 C.E. were unrecorded in contemporary documents and art, and archeology has become an important tool for recovering that information. This course introduces the interdisciplinary methods and the findings of archeological studies of topics including medieval urban and rural lifeways, health, commerce, religion, social hierarchy, warfare, and the effects of global climate change. Cross-listed in anthropology, classical and medieval studies, environmental studies, and history. Open to first-year students. (Premodern.) Offered with varying frequency. G. Bigelow.
Concentrations

This course is referenced by the following General Education Concentrations

INDS 212. Writing/Righting Chinese Women.This course is a survey of major writings by Chinese women, from Ban Zhao (40–120 C.E.), whose nujie is considered the early canon of female moral virtues, to the most recent novels by women writers who pride themselves in their audacity to write about their bodies. The course emphasizes ways women writers across time have countered various masculine constructions of silenced femininity and developed their own literary sensibility, especially in the context of China's modern development. Literary works explore topics that resonate with women's experience such as family, marriage, gender identity, sexuality, revolution, nation, and modernity. Conducted in English. Cross-listed in Asian studies, Chinese, and women and gender studies. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 25. Offered with varying frequency. H. Su.
INDS 219. Environmental Archeology.Over the past two hundred years archeologists, scientists, and humanists in many disciplines have worked together to understand the interactions of past human populations with the physical world, including plants, animals, landscapes, and climates. This course outlines the methods and theories used by archeologists, geologists, biologists, physicists, chemists, and historians in reconstructing past economies and ecologies in diverse areas of the globe. The course also discusses how archeology contributes to our understanding of contemporary environmental issues such as rapid climate change, shrinking biodiversity, and sustainable use of resources. Cross-listed in anthropology, environmental studies, and history. Recommended background: Anthropology 103. Open to first-year students. (Premodern.) Normally offered every year. G. Bigelow.
Concentrations
INDS 220. Afroambiente: Writing a Black Environment.This course studies the response of black writers and intellectuals of the Spanish-speaking world to issues related to the natural environment. In three countries, Ecuador, Puerto Rico, and Equatorial Guinea, modernity has brought serious challenges to notions of economic progress, human rights, and national sovereignty, as well as individual and communal identity. Course materials include written texts from local newspapers and magazines, as well as other sources of information such as Internet sites that discuss issues related to the environment and the arts. Recommended background: Spanish 207 or 208. Cross-listed in African American studies, environmental studies, and Spanish. Conducted in Spanish. Not open to students who have received credit for Interdisciplinary Studies 218. Open to first-year students. Offered with varying frequency. B. Fra-Molinero.
Concentrations

This course is referenced by the following General Education Concentrations

INDS 228. Caring for Creation: Physics, Religion, and the Environment.This course considers scientific and religious accounts of the origin of the universe, examines the relations between these accounts, and explores the way they shape our deepest attitudes toward the natural world. Topics of discussion include the biblical Creation stories, contemporary scientific cosmology, the interplay between these scientific and religious ideas, and the roles they both can play in forming a response to environmental problems. Cross-listed in environmental studies, physics, and religion. Enrollment limited to 40. [S] Offered with varying frequency. J. Smedley, T. Tracy.
Concentrations

This course is referenced by the following General Education Concentrations

INDS 235. The Politics of Pleasure and Desire: Women's Independent and Third Cinema and Video from the African Diaspora.This course examines independent and Third Cinema, and some written texts by women of African descent using contemporary theories of female pleasure and desire. By viewing and reading these cultural productions drawn from "high" and "low" culture in the light of a variety of film theories (e.g., feminist, womanist/black feminist, postcolonial, diasporic) as well as race-critical, feminist, and cultural theories, students explore the "textual" strategies that construct black female representations, and Afra-diasporic authors/directors and audiences as subjects and as agents of political change. Recommended background: any of the following: African American Studies 140A, African American Studies/Theater 225, African American Studies/Women and Gender Studies 201, Theater 102 or 110. Cross-listed in African American studies, rhetoric, and women and gender studies. Open to first-year students. Normally offered every other year. S. Houchins.
Concentrations

This course is referenced by the following General Education Concentrations

INDS 236. The Literatures of Women of the African Diaspora.This course focuses primarily on the literatures of black women from Africa, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom, and Canada, but may examine some works from the United States. All of the texts are in English; some are from the Anglophone diaspora and others are translations from the Lusophone, Hispanophone, and Francophone black world. Students are introduced to historical, feminist, Pan-African, Marxist, and postcolonial critical approaches to analyze this richly diverse yet culturally and politically related body of work. Topics include slavery and migrations, the socioeconomic contexts of prolonged exile from the African continent, liberation struggles on the continent and in the diaspora, as well as the roles of women in these movements. Recommended background: any of the following: African American Studies 140A, African American Studies/Women and Gender Studies 201, African American Studies/Anthropology 251, African American Studies/English 253, Anthropology 228, or Politics 235. Cross-listed in African American studies, English, and women and gender studies. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 25. Normally offered every year. S. Houchins.
Concentrations

This course is referenced by the following General Education Concentrations

INDS 250. Interdisciplinary Studies: Methods and Modes of Inquiry.Interdisciplinarity involves more than a meeting of disciplines. Practitioners stretch methodological norms and reach across disciplinary boundaries. Through examination of a single topic, this course introduces students to interdisciplinary methods of analysis. Students examine what practitioners actually do and work to become practitioners themselves. Prerequisite(s): African American Studies 140A or Women and Gender Studies 100, and one other course in African American studies, American cultural studies, or women and gender studies. Cross-listed in African American studies, American cultural studies, and women and gender studies. Enrollment limited to 40. Normally offered every year. Staff.
INDS 260. United States Latina/Chicana Writings.This course rests on two conceptual underpinnings: Gloria Anzaldúa's Nueva Mestiza and the more recent "U.S. Pan-latinidad" postulated by the Latina Feminist Group. The literary and theoretical production of Chicanas and Latinas is examined through these lenses. Particular attention is given to developing a working knowledge of the key historical and cultural discourses engaged by these writings and the various contemporary United States Latina and Chicana positionalities vis-à-vis popular ethnic representations. The course also examines the function given to marketable cultural productions depending on the different agents involved. Cross-listed in American cultural studies, Spanish, and women and gender studies. Open to first-year students. Offered with varying frequency. C. Aburto Guzmán.
Concentrations

This course is referenced by the following General Education Concentrations

INDS 262. Ethnomusicology: African Diaspora.For Paul Gilroy, the African diaspora is to be understood as the "Black Atlantic"—a dynamic, politically charged web of interrelationships that links diasporic communities through patterns of migration, movement, and historical contingency. This course explores the musical dimensions of the Black Atlantic, but it also demonstrates how music's flow and dynamism make it uniquely well-suited to embodying these cultural relationships, making them deeply felt as present in the immediacy of the moment. Cross-listed in African American studies, anthropology, and music. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 25. Normally offered every other year. D. Chapman.
Concentrations
INDS 291. Exhibiting Cultures.This course examines the politics of exhibiting cultures. Each week students analyze specific exhibitions of cultural artifacts, visual culture, and the cultural body as a means to evaluate the larger issues surrounding such displays. These include issues of race, colonialism, postcolonialism, and curatorial authority in relation to the politics of exhibiting cultures. A field trip to analyze an exhibition is a critical part of the students' experience in the course. Cross-listed in African American studies, American cultural studies, and art and visual culture. Offered with varying frequency. Staff.
Concentrations

This course is referenced by the following General Education Concentrations

INDS 315. African American Philosophers.This course focuses on how African American philosophers confront and address philosophical problems. Students consider the relationship between the black experience and traditional themes in Western philosophy. Attention is also given to the motivations and context sustaining African American philosophers. Recommended background: African American Studies 140A or African American Studies/American Cultural Studies 119. Cross-listed in African American studies, American cultural studies, and philosophy. Not open to students who have received credit for Interdisciplinary Studies 165. Enrollment limited to 15. Offered with varying frequency. Staff.
INDS 325. Black Feminist Literary Theory and Practice.This seminar examines literary theories that address the representation and construction of race, gender, and sexuality, particularly, but not exclusively, theories formulated and articulated by Afra-diasporic women such as Spillers, Ogunyemi, Henderson, Valerie Smith, McDowell, Busia, Lubiano, and Davies. Students not only analyze theoretical essays but also use the theories as lenses through which to explore literary productions of women writers of Africa and the African diaspora in Europe and in the Americas, including Philip, Dangarembga, Morrison, Herron, Gayle Jones, Head, Condé, Brodber, Brand, Merle Collins, and Harriet Wilson. Prerequisite(s): one of the following: African American Studies 140, 235, African American Studies/English 121X, 212, 253, African American Studies/Women and Gender Studies 201, English 294, 295, or English/Women and Gender Studies 121G. Cross-listed in African American studies, English, and women and gender studies. Enrollment limited to 15. (Critical thinking.) Normally offered every other year. S. Houchins.
Concentrations

This course is referenced by the following General Education Concentrations

INDS 333. Goddesses and Goddess Worship in India."Jai Ma!"("Victory to the Mother!") is a cry that resounds throughout India. From the feminine deities familiar across India to local goddess cults, devotion to the divine feminine plays a central role in Hindu religious traditions. Both benevolent and terror-inspiring, protective and destructive, goddesses display multiple characteristics and fulfill multiple roles in the Hindu religious universe. This course examines textual sources, anthropological case studies, and visual resources in an in-depth exploration of Hindu goddess traditions that also considers how gender functions in religious imagination and how this relates to social structures. Recommended background: Asian Studies/Religion 249 or Anthropology 264. Cross-listed in Asian studies, religion, and women and gender studies. Cross-listing beginning Fall 2007. Enrollment limited to 15. Normally offered every other year. S. Schomburg.
INDS 342. Performance, Narrative, and the Body.This course examines the politics of the body through the inter/transdisciplinary frames of the narrative and performance, including the specific ways performance and narrative theories of the body and cultural practices operate in everyday life and social formations. Students examine how the "body" is performed and how narrative is constructed in a variety of different contexts such as race, gender, disease, sexuality, and culture. The course places narrative and performance at the center (rather than the margins) of inquiry, asking how far and how deeply performativity reaches into our lives and how performances construct our identities, differences, and our bodies: who we are and who we can become. Recommended background: course work in African American studies, American cultural studies, anthropology, politics, sociology, or women and gender studies. Cross-listed in African American studies, Anthropology, and women and gender studies. Enrollment is limited to 15. New course beginning Fall 2007. Enrollment limited to 15. Normally offered every other year. M. Beasley.
INDS 457. Interdisciplinary Senior Thesis.Independent study and writing of a major research paper in the area of the student's interdisciplinary major, supervised by an appropriate faculty member. Students register for Interdisciplinary Senior Thesis 457 in the fall semester. Interdisciplinary majors writing an honors thesis register for both Interdisciplinary Thesis 457 and 458. Normally offered every year. Staff.
INDS 457, 458. Interdisciplinary Senior Thesis.Independent study and writing of a major research paper in the area of the student's interdisciplinary major, supervised by an appropriate faculty member. Students register for Interdisciplinary Senior Thesis 457 in the fall semester. Interdisciplinary majors writing an honors thesis register for both Interdisciplinary Thesis 457 and 458. Normally offered every year. Staff.
INDS 458. Interdisciplinary Senior Thesis.Independent study and writing of a major research paper in the area of the student's interdisciplinary major, supervised by an appropriate faculty member. Students register for Interdisciplinary Senior Thesis 458 in the winter semester. Interdisciplinary majors writing an honors thesis register for both Interdisciplinary Thesis 457 and 458. Normally offered every year. Staff.
Short Term Courses
INDS s24. Shetland Islands: Archeological Field Course.The main element of this unit is the excavation of a late medieval/early modern farmstead at Brow, Shetland (Scotland). Early settlement in Shetland was on the margin of successful medieval colonization of the North Atlantic. The Brow site is a revealing "laboratory" in which to explore the interaction of climate change and human settlement in a fragile coastal zone. A series of field trips in mainland Scotland place the Brow excavation in the wider context of settlement, environment, archeology, and the history of Scotland and the North Atlantic. Recommended background: courses in medieval history or archeology. Cross-listed in classical and medieval studies, environmental studies, and history. Not open to seniors. Not open to students who have received credit for Interdisciplinary Studies s28. Enrollment limited to 10. Instructor permission is required. (Premodern.) Normally offered every year. M. Jones.
Concentrations
INDS s25. Black Terror.This unit explores Gothic fiction and film, works that create an atmosphere of brooding and unknown terror and represent race and gender as sources of dread, of "the Horror. The Horror." Students read works by such authors as Sheridan Le Fanu, Bram Stoker, Toni Morrison, Nalo Hopkinson, Tananarive Due, Thulani Davis, Reginald McKnight, Jean Rhys, and Harriet Wilson. The films include The Mark of Lillith, Dracula, Ganga and Hess, The Hunger, and Carmilla. Using psychoanalytic, film, race, queer, and gender theories as tools, students excavate deeply embedded discourses of race, sex, and sexuality. Recommended background: any of the following: African American Studies/Theater 225, African American Studies/Theater 226, or Theater 102. Cross-listed in African American studies, rhetoric, and women and gender studies. Offered with varying frequency. S. Houchins.
Concentrations

This course is referenced by the following General Education Concentrations

INDS s27. The Viking World: Archeology and Ethnohistory.When the Vikings poured out of their Scandinavian homelands they transformed the early medieval world. Tales of their piracy and raiding dominate the written records of the time, but a growing volume of archeological and environmental evidence is shedding new light on the Vikings as explorers, founders of towns, traders, artisans, and specialists in northern agriculture and fishing. This unit emphasizes the findings of archeology and studies of Icelandic sagas in outlining the lifeways, historical impacts, and differing fates of the Scandinavian peoples from 800 to 1100 C.E. Cross-listed in anthropology, classical and medieval studies, and history. (Premodern.) Offered with varying frequency. G. Bigelow.
Concentrations