80S Series Seminars
CULANTH 80S Islam Public Sphere (CZ, SS, CCI, EI, STS)
89 Series Seminars
ARTHIST 89S / CLST 89S
The Ancient Mind: Cyber-Brain and Society (CZ)
Understanding who we are now demands understanding where we came from. The study of the ancient mind is thus one of the most challenging and fascinating research activities regarding Homo sapiens and human society. This kind of study requires a multidisciplinary approach to involve different disciplines and research background relevant to understanding how ancient minds thought about the world. This can be possible with a new dialogue between neurosciences and the humanities, and in particular connecting the study of art and material culture with cultural models, cultural patterns and the evolution of the brain. The class aims to open new perspectives in the study of the past and in the interpretation of the ancient and modern mind by approaching research questions at the intersection of the brain sciences, humanities, archaeology, anthropology, art, philosophy, aesthetics and visual studies.
Instructor: Maurizio Forte
Maurizio Forte, Ph.D. (Sapienza Universita di Roma) is William and Sue Gross Professor of Classical Studies, and Professor of Art, Art History and Visual Studies. His teaching and research interests include classical archaeology, digital and cyber archaeology and world heritage.
How Organisms Communicate (NS, STS)
This course will explore the communicative world of animals, from the simplest chemical signals used by slime molds when they aggregate to the complex vocalizations of birds, whales and primates – including humans. We will explore fundamental principles of evolution that shape communication systems, the physics and physiology of different communication modalities, and connections that can be made across very different ways of communicating. Anyone with an interest in how the natural world relates to the human condition will find this class a useful multidisciplinary exploration of how one organism may affect the behavior of another.
Instructor: Steve Nowicki
Stephen Nowicki, Ph.D. (Cornell University) is Bass Fellow and Professor in the Departments of Biology, and in Psychology and Neuroscience in Trinity College of Arts and Sciences, and in the Department of Neurobiology in Duke Medical School. He is Dean and Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education. His research interests span behavioral ecology and neuroethology, in particular the structure, function, and evolution of animal communication systems. In his spare time he plays trombone and juggles.
Introduction to Physiology (NS)
While anatomy is the study of living organisms’ form, physiology is the study of their function. This course will explore physiology on an organismal level and will look beyond the basic function of individual systems to also emphasize the high level of functional integration of these systems. Discussions will include the “why” of “how” the body functions the way it does.
Instructor: Vickie Knight Eason
Vickie Knight Eason, D.V.M (Auburn University School of Veterinary Medicine) is an instructor of Biology. Her teaching and research interests include anatomy and physiology.
Think Molecules! How Molecules Produce Life: Discussion and Laboratory for the Unfamiliar (NS)
How do incredibly tiny things like membranes, proteins, RNA, DNA, look, act, and produce life? You will explore through discussion and hands-on experiments how life’s molecules are born, shaped, and work. You will create membranes from their components, unwind and rewind DNA, unfold and re-fold a protein. You will connect molecular structure with self –assembly and function. You will “see” DNA replicate inside cells, DNA make RNA, and RNA make protein, the foundation of all life. The ideas learned are used to discuss origin-of life-scenarios. Grading is based on interest and occasional written tests. Available if you have not yet taken Biology 201/202 and if you don’t have Biology 20 (AP) credit.
Instructor: Daniele Armaleo
Daniele Armaleo, Ph.D. (Duke University) is an Associate Professor of the Practice of Biology. His teaching and research interests include developmental and molecular biology.
Metallobiochemistry and Evolution: Metallome, Proteome and Genome Interactions over Geological Time (NS)
The metallome is the distribution and concentration of metals in a biological system that are essential to life. The bio-availability of these metallic elements is determined by their chemical form (speciation), which in turn is determined by environmental factors which vary over geological time. There are three fundamental chemical processes which control this time dependent speciation: Solubility equilibria, redox equilibria and metal-complex formation. We will explore the evolution of the metallome and how this influences biological evolution through interactions with the proteome and the genome. Prerequisite: One semester university level chemistry or the equivalent.
Instructor: Alvin L. Crumbliss
Alvin L. Crumbliss, Ph.D. (Northwestern University) is a University Distinguished Service Professor of Chemistry. His teaching and research interests include inorganic biochemistry, metals in biology, inorganic chemistry, and biochemistry of iron.
Ancient Stories, Modern Worlds (ALP, CCI)
The life and afterlife of Greek and Roman myths and historical narratives across time, cultures, and a variety of genres and media. Students choose an ancient character, story world or narrative and trace that story/story world through subsequent incarnations. Examples include ancient gods in modern contexts; modern works about minor mythical characters; ancient narratives transformed entirely for modern audiences. The retelling of ancient stories as a form of fan fiction: what attracts us to these characters and story worlds? How can we open up space in ancient and well-known narratives for something new? How, in short, do ancient stories remain fresh and relevant for the worlds we live in?
Instructor: Jennifer Clare Woods
Jennifer Clare Woods, Ph.D. (King’s College London) is an Associate Professor of Classical Studies. Her teaching and research interests include classical tradition, comparative mythology (taught for ten years at Duke) and fan fiction (has a new FHI Story Lab project).
Music and Mirror, Mediator and Prophet (CZ, SS, CCI, R)
This course investigates the ways in which music serves as a mirror, a mediator and a prophet in societies undergoing political and social transitions. It explores how history is reflected, the present is expressed and the future is envisioned through music.
Instructor: Ingrid Byerly
Ingrid Byerly, Ph.D. (Duke University) is a Senior Lecturing Fellow of Cultural Anthropology. Her fields of teaching and research interest are in cross-cultural communication, video production, cultural anthropology, education and ethnomusicology.
Relevance of the Ancient: Introduction to World Archaeology (CZ)
This course is an introduction to archaeology and world prehistory. As we progress through the term, we will discuss how archaeology is conducted and applied in the field, examine the cultural and biological evolution of anatomically modern humans from their earliest beginnings to the present day, the migrations of people across the globe, and the rise and fall of state level societies. You will also become familiar with how archaeology has developed as a discipline historically, the modern methods that archaeologists use to locate, preserve, and manage cultural resources, theories that drive archaeological interpretation, and examine how studies of prehistory have enriched our understanding of humans through time and space. And how archaeological knowledge can be made relevant to our comprehension of the present and future.
Instructor: Roderick Kevin Donald
Roderick Kevin Donald, Ph.D. (University of Oregon) is a Visiting Scholar in the Department of Cultural Anthropology. His teaching and research interests are in anthropology and archaeology.
Failure: The Culture and History of an Idea (SS, EI, W)
Everyone fails. Yet, the costs of failure affect people differently. Who and what does failure serve? Is failure a privilege of an expectation? In this class, we will examine the roles failure plays in education, economics, engineering, experimentation, the environment, and your own emotions. We will investigate the history of failure as an economic and social construct in the United States beginning in the mid-19th century and chart the changing meanings failure has had as both a negative label and a positive space for innovation and experimentation. How can failure be productive and instructive? Is Failure an end or a beginning? Through interdisciplinary study and creative exploration, this class will challenge you to explore how the idea and structural reality of failure shapes your own lives and those of others.
Instructor: Erin Parish
Erin Parish, Ph.D. (Duke University) is Visiting Faculty in the Department of Cultural Anthropology. Her research focuses on the physicality of memory and the psychology of place in the aftermath of conflict in Colombia. She teaches project-based interdisciplinary classes on issues surrounding war and peace, migration, environment and memory, and political participation.
Imagining War (ALP, EI, W)
Ever since reader interest, from the immediate postbellum period to the end of the 19th century, ensured a receptive market for writing that explored the national tragedy of the Civil War, war has been a major subject of the American literary and cultural imagination. In this class, we will read closely and analyze a series of landmark American books and films dealing with war in order to understand not only how these works create and define the heroes, villains, and victims of war, but also how they blur, and sometimes even obliterate, these very categories. Since these works often attempt to capture the experience of combat, as well as what war does to people caught up in it, we will investigate how the subject of war encourages writers and directors to seek out aesthetic and formal innovations that mirror the complexity of the topics they represent. Taken together, these books and films constitute an evolving conversation about what it is to be American, and they do so by recording—and acting as commentaries on—the social and cultural changes within American society, as well as the increasingly ambiguous moral role the United States plays in global affairs. Authors to be studied may include Ambrose Bierce, Stephen Crane, Ernest Hemingway, David Hersey, John Horne Burns, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Michael Herr, Tim O’Brien, and Dexter Filkins; films will be represented by works from directors such as William Wyler, Stanley Kubrick, Francis Ford Coppola, Steven Spielberg, and Terrence Malick.
Instructor: Michael Maiwald
Michael Maiwald, Ph.D. (Duke University) is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of English. His teaching includes Writing and Critical Thinking, Modernism, and 19th and 20th Century American Literature. His research interests are Ernest Hemingway, the Harlem Renaissance, and Modernism.
Into the Woods: Exploring the Duke Forest (NS, STS)
What kind of tree is that? Why does it grow here? What other organisms depends on it? Preserving biodiversity, whether in a remote tropical jungle or right in your back yard, is a major world issue. Through class discussion and local field trips, this course will introduce students to the history and ecology of the Duke Forest, and the importance of forests to our quality of life. Topics will include community ecology and natural history, organism and habitat identification, and history and management of the Duke Forest. Field trips during class period will visit forested areas around campus as well as research and management sites in the Duke Forest.
Instructor: Nicolette Cagle
Nicolette Cagle, Ph.D. (Duke University) is a Visiting Lecturer at the Nicholas School of the Environment. Her teaching and research interests include natural history, environmental education, professional writing, and environmental communication.
GERMAN 89S / AMI 89S / LIT 89S
Surveillance and Society: Big Brother, Secret Police and Reality TV (ALP, CZ, CCI, EI)
A study of surveillance in fiction, and as historical and contemporary reality. Surveillance begins with the erosion of the bourgeois idea of a right to privacy, reaches an extreme in totalitarian states, and resurfaces in the contemporary digital age of 24-hour self-monitoring and self-display. We will explore the ethical, political, social, and aesthetic dimensions of surveillance. Materials to be examined include dystopian novels (Orwell, Atwood), philosophical texts (Bentham, Foucault), films that employ and depict techniques of surveillance (Caché, The Lives of Others, The Conversation, Enemy of the State), and historical and legal documents from the German and American contexts.
Instructor: Kata Gellen
Kata Gellen, Ph.D. (Princeton University) is an Assistant Professor of Germanic Languages and Literature. Her teaching and research interests include German literature and film, German-Jewish studies, and modernist studies.
Chinese Medicine (CZ, CCI, STS, W)
This course introduces students to the history of medicine through the study of medical practices and beliefs in China. Paying close attention to socio-historical context, we will explore how those beliefs formed, how the practices have changed over time, and in particular how the introduction of scientific biomedicine forced fundamental changes in Chinese medicine over the course of the twentieth century. As a Freshman Seminar, this course introduces first-year students to the discipline of History, as well as to the topic of medicine in China. Students will work in close consultation with the professor to produce a research paper using both textual and visual sources. Students will develop visual literacy through consultation of visual texts (posters, photographs, anatomy books, etc.) held in Duke Libraries. We will also take a class trip to the National Library of Medicine in Washington D.C. to consult the country’s largest collection of Chinese public health posters, and you will develop a presentation of your selected poster for an evening audience at Duke.
Instructor: Nicole Barnes
Nicole Barnes, Ph.D. (University of California – Irvine) is an Assistant Professor of History. Her teaching and research interests include modern China, the history of medicine and public health, gender and women’s histories, and the social history of war.
Math and Human Physiology
Topics include: the heart and circulation, heat and temperature regulation, oxygen uptake in the lungs, the immune system and infectious diseases, nephrons and the kidney, ovulation number in mammals, chemistry and cell metabolism, sensory neurobiology. Other topics may be substituted depending on the interests of the students enrolled.
Instructor: Michael Reed
Michael Reed, Ph.D. (Stanford University) is a Professor of Mathematics. He teaches analysis and mathematical biology with his research interests concentrating on the applications of mathematics to biological systems.
Mathematics of the Universe: Relativity to Astrophysics (NS)
This course will survey, in precise mathematical terms, what is known and not known about the universe, from special relativity, the big bang, and black holes to dark matter and theoretical astrophysics. Einstein's idea that "matter curves spacetime," which is the fundamental principle behind general relativity, requires a field of mathematics called differential geometry, for example. Since this is a seminar, the pace and emphasis of the class will be highly influenced by the questions asked by the students. Nevertheless, mastery of single variable calculus is highly recommended.
Instructor: Hubert L. Bray
Hubert L. Bray, Ph.D. (Stanford University) is a Professor of Mathematics and Physics. His teaching and research interests include geometric analysis, general relativity, and theoretical astrophysics. His interests include black holes, dark matter, and the curvature of spacetime.
MUSIC 89S (ALP)
Drama Through Music (ALP)
Drama per musica is what the early Italians called opera: 'drama by means of music.' Over two centuries after the composition of the early works in this genre, the German composer, Richard Wagner wrote a tract entitled, Oper und Drama, in which he expounded upon his own theories concerning the relationship between music and drama. How are we today to comprehend opera as musical drama?
The question is relevant because the popularity of opera has increased and in its repertoire we find some of the most sublime artistic expressions known to human kind. This seminar will examine exemplary works in that repertoire with the hope of unlocking some of the mystery, relevance and enjoyment of drama per musica.
Instructor: Harry Davidson
Harry Davidson, M.M. (Pacific Lutheran University) is a Professor of the Practice in the Music Department and Director of the Duke Symphony Orchestra. He made his major orchestra debut conducting the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. He has guest conducted numerous professional and conservatory ensembles, including the Charlotte Symphony, the Akron Symphony, and the Cleveland Institute of Music and Oberlin College Conservatory orchestras.
Making Music Today (ALP)
Making Music Today offers an enjoyable, introductory forum to explore musical styles, and entrée into the ways musicians create. Class is linked to performances offered by Duke Performances or in the Department of Music. Students gain interpretive aesthetic understanding of musical sound, expressive forms, and cultural movements. Attendance at four concerts during the semester is required; for each, students write a response paper. Attendance at the first two concerts and submission of the first two response papers is required. Afterwards there is some choice; students complete two additional response papers.
Instructor: Stephen Jaffe
Stephen Jaffe, A.M. (University of Pennsylvania) is the Mary and James H. Semans Professor of Music Composition. His teaching and research interests include music composition and performance. His recent collaborations have been with the National Symphony Orchestra, The North Carolina Symphony, and the Kennedy Center Chamber Players.
MUSIC 89S / AAAS 89S
African-American Music in the Twentieth Century (ALP, CCI)
Music by African-Americans represents one of the most important cultural phenomena of the 20th century. This course moves through various dimensions of African-American Music in the Twentieth Century. It is divided into three parts: New Orleans, Duke Ellington, and 1950s-60s Rhythm and Blues. These areas have been selected to show diversity of the tradition, to draw out interpretive cultural and sociological themes that touch upon the music, and to get familiar with some of the greatest musical achievements.
Instructor: Thomas Brothers
Tom Brothers, Ph.D. (University of California – Berkeley) is a Professor of Music. His teaching and research interests include popular music, jazz, late medieval and early Renaissance music, and African-American music.
Hot Topics in Health
Review of current knowledge and trends in health promotion, particularly related to exercise, nutrition, sexual health, substance use, sleep, and emotions/mood.
Instructor: Janis Hampton
Janis Hampton, M.A. (UNC-Greensboro) is Assistant Professor in the Practice of Health, Wellness and Physical Education. Her fields of teaching and research interest center on developing awareness of health and fitness issues for the general population as well as young adults.
POLSCI 89S / CLST 89S
Human Being and Citizen (CZ, CCI, EI)
What is justice, and how does it relate to the good life? Are our duties as citizens consistent or in tension with our personal happiness and self-realization? What is the relationship between ethics and politics? Still of pressing concern to us today, these questions first arose as systematic themes in Greek political thought. Other themes will include the character of democracy and freedom; tensions between individual and community, public and private, conscience and obedience, the intellectual and the city. Readings may be drawn from Plato, Aristotle, Sophocles, Plutarch, Herodotus.
Instructor: Aaron B. Roberts
Aaron Roberts, Ph.D. (Duke University) is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Political Science. His research interests concern the intersection of contemporary, normative political theory and the history of political thought.
Beyond Reason: Empathy and Identity (SS, NS, R, W)
Developmental science approach to integrating knowledge across the biological and social sciences and humanities about engaging difference and the nature, development, and enhancement of personal epistemology, empathy, and identity. Videotaped clinical cases and documentary films are used to stimulate reflection and discussion.
Instructor: Robert J. Thompson, Jr.
Robert J. Thompson, Jr, Ph.D. (University of North Dakota) is a Professor of Psychology. His research interests include how biological and psychosocial processes act together in human development; the adaptation of children and their families to developmental problems and chronic illnesses, including sickle cell disease and cystic fibrosis; and the assessment of teaching and learning in higher education.
Buddhist Thought and Practice in America (CZ, CCI, EI)
Exposes students to the study of religion and to themes in American religion through the lens of American reception of Buddhism ° outlines intellectual history of American reception of Buddhism in 19th and 20th century and overview of Buddhism in Asia with attention to the 19th century reformation of Buddhist culture ° students are exposed to ethnographic studies, engaged in discourse analysis and do a literature review on Mind-Based Stress Relief and Buddhism.
Instructor: David Need
David Need, Ph.D. (University of Virginia) is a Visiting Instructor of Religious Studies. His teaching and research interests include Buddhism, religion and poetry, ritual and performance.
ROMST 89S / CULANTH 89S / HISTORY 89S / LATAMER 89S
Race and Sex in Brazilian History and Society (CZ, CCI)
This interdisciplinary course will examine the historical development and connections between race, sex, and gender in shaping Brazilian racial relations from slavery to the present day. We will explore the role of sex, deviance, and the body in shaping national identity and how Brazil is viewed from the outside. This course will include readings from anthropology, history, sociology, and literature as well film. Topics to be explored include slavery and colonialism, miscegenation, sexual tourism, prostitution, plastic surgery, and lesbian, gay, and transgender identities. Conducted in English.
Instructor: Lamonte Aidoo
Lamonte Aidoo, Ph.D. (Brown University) is an Assistant Professor of Portuguese Studies. He teaches courses on 19th-20th century Brazilian literature, Afro-Brazilian cultural studies, comparative Brazilian and inter-American racial formations, the confluence of sexuality and national identity. His research interests include slavery and abolition in the Americas, miscegenation, comparative trans-Atlantic studies (Anglophone, Francophone, Hispanic, Lusophone).
VMS 89S / ARTHIST 89S
Mapping and Modeling Early Modern Venice (ALP, CZ)
The urban landscape of Renaissance Venice experienced notable change beginning with Napoleon’s forced entry into the city in 1797. Significant intervention included the destruction of many Renaissance monuments and, therefore, great loss to the architectural and artistic patrimony of the city. The goal of this Wired! course is to map the urban landscape of early modern Venice by re-constructing lost architectural monuments of the fifteenth-seventeenth centuries along with their immediate surroundings. To accomplish this, students will work in groups to use digital tools, such as Sketch-Up, to translate historical and modern maps, plans, prints, engravings and paintings into 3-D models. In addition to the exterior reconstruction of the buildings, students will use inventories and various imagery to recreate interior spaces. These monuments will be mapped onto present-day Venice.
Instructor: Kristin Lanzoni
Kristin Lanzoni, Ph.D. (University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill) is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Art, Art History and Visual Studies. Her teaching and research interests include Renaissance and Baroque Art History. This seminar is supported by a grant from the Humanities Writ Large.
Reproduction (CZ, EI, STS)
Examines the role technology, globalization, late capitalism, ideas about health and ability, and advances in feminist theory play in the building of contemporary families. Begins by examining new frontiers of medical science: gamete donation, testing, manipulation, selective reduction, and surrogacy all pose serious ethical dilemmas for women. Examines these technologies in light of currently available interventions and possible future developments. Next, we examine issues and contours of the abortion debate with the ultimate goal of examining what kinds of assumptions pro-life and pro-choice rhetorics hold in common, and how certain forms of feminist theory might question those principles. Finally, we examine foreign and domestic adoption as an alternate way of building a family.
Instructor: M. Kathy Rudy
M. Kathy Rudy, Ph.D. (Duke University) is a Professor in the Women’s Studies Program. Her research interests include reproductive ethics, animals, feminism, religious ethics, food politics, conservation, and ecofeminism.