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Mid-Semester Book Club Courses Available

Interested in earning additional Honors credits this semester? Add a one- or two-credit Honors book club to your schedule! The following courses are available and will begin the week of Oct. 14:
  • Natural Navigation with Dustin Madison - HONR 293G (CRN 89317) W from 11-12:15 p.m. 1 credit. 
    If you found yourself lost in remote wilderness, could you make your way back to safety? How would you even begin? Modern reliance on GPS-enabled devices has withered many people's sense of direction and innate talent for navigation. Nature can provide numerous helpful cues to guide you if you know what to look for.

    In Natural Navigation, we will be reading and discussing The Lost Art of Finding Our Way by John Edward Huth, an in-depth exploration of how aspects of astronomy, oceanography, meteorology, and more can orient and guide us through the natural world.

    Through practice, you will cultivate your sense for place and direction: what are the recognizable landmarks where you live?; how consistent is the prevailing wind?; what are the brightest stars in your northern sky?

    We'll learn about how mental maps of regions are built and accessed in our minds. We'll look at how purpose and geography influenced many ancient cultures of navigation: Arab merchants expertly spanning the Indian Ocean from Indonesia to the Horn of Africa; Inuit hunters ranging wide over near-featureless expanses of snow and ice; Pacific Islanders pinpointing tiny patches of land amid the largest swaths of open water in the world.
  • Intro to Library Research with Lynne Stahl - ULIB 101 (CRN 89238) Online. 2 credits. 
    This special section of ULIB 101: Intro to Library Research explores the politics of information in the context of COVID-19 through an interdisciplinary humanities approach. How is pandemic-related information produced, circulated, and discussed, and how does this cycle reflect, expose, and perpetuate existing social inequalities related to race, gender, class, ability, and more?

    We'll start with this incisive article in The Atlantic and use it as a basis from which to develop research questions to pursue throughout the course with attention to scholarly publishing, the commodification of information, social media information flow, and source evaluation, with the politics of knowledge production as a general touchstone. Students will create an infographic for their final project, which will be displayed in a virtual exhibition through the Libraries.

    There are multiple sections of ULIB 101 in STAR; this one is section H01.

  • Business & Human Rights with Jenna Martin - HONR 293V (CRN 88206) M from 5-5:50 p.m. 1 credit. 
    Like it or not, businesses have an increasing impact – not just on our economy, but on society as a whole. Combine this with the incredible amount of power they yield (for instance, if Walmart was a country it would the 24th largest in the world) and you have a potentially potent mix.

    This book seminar will serve as a deep dive into corporations’ larger societal impacts – particularly in the area of human rights. We will read stories of people who work on the inside, people who tried to make change from the outside, and hear from the people whose lives have been directly affected by businesses.

    Among the questions this seminar will explore include: what does it mean to be a corporate idealist? Can a business do well and also do good? How do you craft a framework that allows business to strive while still keeping communities in mind?
  • Disaster! Man-Made Chaos with Eric Myers. HONR 293O (CRN 88829) T from 3-3:50 p.m. 1 credit. 
    Human error, deadly water, annihilation, cover-ups. These are just some of the topics to be discussed in “Disaster: Man-Made Chaos.” Read “The Johnstown Flood” and “Chernobyl 01:23:40” to discover what went wrong and how both could have been prevented. While separated by roughly 100 years, these two disasters provide a guidebook as we seek to prevent the next great disaster.
  • Race & Antiracism with Amena Anderson. HONR 293M (CRN 89417) Th from 4-4:50 p.m. 1 credit. 
    Conversations about race and difference can be difficult and intimidating, but also enlightening and liberating. In this election year, as our society grapples with the systemic injustices that have been exposed by COVID-19, the senseless murders of Black citizens at the hands of the police, the inhumane treatment of Brown immigrants and their children, and the unending disregard for and disrespect of the indigenous people of this land, there is no better time than now for students of all backgrounds to engage in constructive dialogue about race.

    Drawing on the renowned work of the acclaimed race-scholars, Robin DiAngelo, Ibram Kendi, and Isabel Wilkerson, this 8-week book study will engage ideas about Whiteness as social identity and ideology; race as salient and, arguably, oppressive categories of existence; and, antiracist practice as an antidote to racism.

    In addition to robust discussions sparked by student-and-instructor-generated questions, course participants will reflect on their learning and its personal meaning to them in journal-like writing.
  • Race at the Intersection with Anne Lofaso - HONR 293R (CRN 89427) Th from 4-4:50 p.m. 1 credit. The books in this course will revolve around race and racism themes throughout our four-hundred-year history starting with the first African slaves who were coercively brought to American shores in 1619.

    This book study samples literature—all written by African Americans—in each century of colonized American history. We will explore the following questions: What does it mean to be African American? What does “all men were created equal” mean for the African American experience? For the African American female experience? What role has resistance and civil disobedience played in forming a more perfect union and has that role changed in the follow periods: Antebellum America, Reconstruction Era, Jim Crow Era the Civil Rights Era, and the alleged Post-racial Era? How does Blacks Live Matter fit into this history?

    The course is called Race at the Intersection, because we will be exploring the extent to which the African American experience differs (or not) depending on intersectional identity points such as gender, class, geography, and gender identity.