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Queen's University
 

Elective Course Descriptions

ARTH 864* Dada, Gender, and Sexuality

Department: Art Term Available:  Winter 2014
Instructor: Allison Morehead

The various iterations and reiterations of Dada, from the early twentieth century to the present, have provided artistic means to critique, construct, and at times sustain various gender and sexual identities. Not surprisingly, then, certain Dada practices including performance, photomontage, puppetry, embroidery, and the readymade, have functioned as testing grounds for feminist and queer approaches to art. This course explores Dada, gender and sexuality from historical and historiographical points of view, with a dual emphasis on primary texts and on texts that have fostered new critical approaches. Creative projects will be encouraged. Students hoping to pursue practice-based graduate work might want to explore Dada strategies and modes with a view to historicizing their own practices.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

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ARTH 865* The Art of International Cultural Relations    
Department: Art Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor: Lynda Jessup

Despite increasing recognition of the active role of art exhibitions in advancing hegemonic values and dominant narratives –among them nationalist art histories and liberal ideologies– sustained attention has yet to be paid to art exhibitions as an instrument of foreign and domestic state policy. This course focuses on the use art exhibitions –specifically, representative exhibitions of art– to explore the relationship between the extended state sphere of culture (within which the cultural institutions of the state function) and the foreign policy sphere of the state, which historically has been more explicitly directed to the advancement of liberalism and its economics.

Of central interest in this course is the fluidity with which objects lose and gain value and change in meaning within the “Western,” liberal system of art classification, as well as the ways in which art historical narratives function, not as static stories, but as a cultural resource in the present directed toward present needs and the interests of various stakeholders. For this reason, the course is attentive to non-Western as well as Western art forms; Primitive, Souvenir and Fine Art; material as well as visual art exhibitions; the narrative of European art, as well as its adjacent nationalist histories; the historical as well as the contemporary.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

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ARTH 868* Art and Activism

Department: Art Term Available: TBA Instructor: Clive Robertson

An examination of both modern and postmodern contemporary art as activism sampled from Western and non-Western practices. The chronological period of study is from the end of the 1960s to the present. Theoretical frameworks to be used include social movement theory, postcolonial theory, and critical museum studies.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course. This course may be taken as a Cultural Studies Directed Reading Course (CUST 890*). Please discuss with instructor.

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ARTH 876* Cultural Studies in Contemporary Art, Media, and Other Phenomena

Department: Art Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor:  Jeff Barbeau

This seminar will explore the dynamic relationship between contemporary cultural theory and a variety of forms that fall into the domain of artistic production, mediation, consumption, and waste. Television, music, film, literature, new media, as well as more traditional formats will be considered as vital fields of inquiry. Each week we will pair close readings of recent theoretical work with a wide range of practical issues that one may encounter in visual and material culture, cultural studies, as well as in the broader course of one's personal or collective experience. Seminars will be organized around a theme (Ecology, Piracy, The Climate, Science-Fiction, Attention, The Non-Human) that will gather together theoretical texts and material examples in order to shed light on some of the forces that may give form to our lives in the 21st century. We will be using David Joselit's After Art and Pamela Lee's Forgetting the Art World as key texts, as well as broad swath of articles, images, exhibitions, and films in order to tease out our complex and constantly changing interaction with the material world.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

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DEVS 802* Cultural Politics of Development
Department: Global Development Studies Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor: Dia Da Costa

This course provides a comprehensive introduction to the cultural politics of development in historical and contemporary perspective. The course focuses on narratives of development and their relationship to social and political movements in the South and North. Themes include the ideas of tradition, modernity and progress; colonialism, nationalism and liberation; and the gendered and racialised politics of development.

This is a mandatory course for all graduate students in Global Development Studies.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

Syllabus available late Fall 2013
DEVS 892* Field Research
Department: Global Development Studies Term Available: Fall 2013 Instructor: Villia Jefremovas

The purpose of this course is to introduce graduate students to qualitative field research through a combination of course work and field work. The course will cover research design, proposal writing, research ethics, qualitative research methods – concentrating on interviewing and observation, and data analysis, in order to provide the students with a grasp of important elements underlying successful fieldwork design, implementation and reporting. The class will be divided into 2 groups that will each set a research question, design a research project, gain ethical clearance for this project, undertake the research, and analyze and present the results as a scholarly report. There are six course goals: (a) To familiarize students with the concepts, issues and processes in fieldwork; (b) To introduce students to the pragmatic aspects of research through the hands-on experience of designing, and implementing a research project; (c) To introduce students to team-based research work.This is a cornerstone of development research and work; (d) To develop problem-solving skills in research, teamwork skills, writing proficiency and oral communication skills, through group work, individual work and presentations; (e) To develop skills and practices that will enable students to do more effective research in the future; (f) To provide a good toolbox of readings and resources for conducting effective qualitative research.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

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DRAM 419* Generating Space
Department: Drama Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor: Natalie Rewa

The performative turn of contemporary societies is regularly observed by cultural, performance and architectural theorists. Performance and installation art has long ago left the constraints of galleries and live performances have derived narratives from sites and human interactions at them. Taking the campus of Queen’s University as our specific site we will study its spaces as sites for performance. Cafeterias, study spaces, labs, stages and art galleries have been designed for specific performance by their users. There are, however, many spaces on campus that are not programmed. Some of these allow for encounters which contest the anonymity of our expanding campus. Locating and animating such spaces (including some that have lost their original use), will be an object of our study. Students are expected to generate spatial experiments on campus, demonstrating potential site interactions. Research seminars, critical writing and a series of open studio workshops throughout the term will be methods used. No experience or formal training in theatre is prescribed. Admission to the course by permission of the instructor: N. Rewa rewan@queensu.ca and by arrangement with the Department of Drama

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

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EDUC 888* Media and Culture
Department: Education Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor: Shehla Burney

The media have infiltrated, influenced and impacted all aspects of contemporary life, including education, teaching and learning. New media technologies have changed the face of communication: the media not only shape our world-view today, but define our cultural identity.

 

This course highlights the ways in which media constructs social reality, manufactures consent, and manipulates young minds with subliminal advertising. The course focuses on creating a pedagogy that critically examines media technologies, decodes the message, demythologizes representation, while exploring the relationship between culture, media and technology.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

EDUC 930* Issues in Cultural and Global Studies in Education
Department: Education Term Available: Fall 2013 Instructor: Magda Lewis

A seminar course that introduces students to critical social theories, current approaches to cultural analysis, theories of identity, sub-cultural positionings, to the practice and implications of social/cultural theories and global issues.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

ENGL 470 "The Souls of Black Folk": African American Literature

Department: English Term Available: Fall/Winter 2013-2014
Instructor: Asha Varadharajan

This course will take a multi-faceted approach to African American literature and culture in order to define a "black aesthetic" in all its complexity and contradiction. We will study multiple genres and mediums and attend to both oral and written composition and performance in order to reveal the interplay of tradition and innovation in African American literature and culture. These are likely to include slave narratives, poetry, drama, fiction, spirituals, jazz, blues, rap, hip hop, art (including performance pieces), folk tales like Brer Rabbit and Tar Baby, film, and humour (including minstrelsy). Because this course moves beyond an exclusive focus on literature, we will pay particular attention to historical contexts, political movements, and economic factors that determine and inflect cultural expression. Wherever appropriate, we will examine critical and philosophical interventions on the question of race, miscegenation, passing, and sexuality as well as "white" representations of blackness that " black" artists reformulate. If time permits, some reference will be made to the African Canadian and "Black British" experience. 2 major research projects, 1 multi-media/creative assignment, assigned forms of participation, and a final exam.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course. This course may only be taken as ENGL Directed Reading Course/s or as a Cultural Studies Directed Reading Course/s with permission of the instructor.

Course Website
ENGL 482* Topics in Indigenous Literature II: Aboriginal and Chinese Canadian Connections in Contemporary Literatures in Canada
Department: English Term Available: Winter 2014
Instructor: Petra Fachinger

This seminar is inspired by Rita Wong’s article “Decolonizasian: Reading Asian and First Nations Relations in Literature” and the 2012 special issue of Ricepaperentitled “Aboriginal & Asian Canadian Writers.” As Wong observes, “The challenging relationships between subjects positioned as ‘Asian Canadian’ and ‘indigenous’ raise questions regarding immigrant complicity in the colonization of land as well as the possibility of making alliances toward decolonization” (158-59). Chinese migration to British Columbia, which dates back to the 1780s, reconfigured colonial relations between Aboriginal peoples and European Canadians. We will discuss novels and short stories that portray relationships between Chinese and Indigenous people like Sky Lee’s Disappearing Moon Café and Lee Maracle’s “Yin Chin” and read other texts like Wayson Choy’s The Jade Peony and Ruby Slipperjack’s Silent Words in juxtaposition to tease out textual and cultural affinities as well as fundamental differences. In its discussion of the relationship between indigeneity and (the Chinese) diaspora, the seminar will also be concerned with the implications and limitations of cross-cultural and textual affiliative politics. The seminar is organized in six interconnected sections: joint histories, cross-cultural relations, and decolonizing antiracism; knowledge holders, language and storytelling, decolonization and “reconciliation”; rewriting the European Gothic and the “spectres of settlement”; “living in the hyphen” as life writing; transnational/transracial adoption; assimilation and “the lifeblood of resurgence.” 

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

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ENGL 491* How to Write about Africa

Department: English Term Available:Winter 2014
Instructor: Asha Varadharajan

This seminar will look at the historical evolution of the colonial and anti-colonial imagination of Africa with specific reference to focalization, voice, genre and mode, tropes, typology, and stereotypes, and the complex relations between writing and the (de)construction of difference. The emphasis is on fiction and travelogue, but there may be occasion to consider drama and performance, and other aspects of oral/aural, visual, and digital cultures.The texts under consideration will include some of the following options: Aphra Behn's Oroonoko, Maria Edgeworth's "The Grateful Negro," the writings of Henry Stanley and Mary Kingsley, Heart of Darkness, Redmond O'Hanlon's No Mercy: A Journey into the Heart of the Congo, Adam Hochschild's King Leopold's Ghost and the interventions of African and Caribbean writers, critics, and historians such as Chinua Achebe, Derek Walcott, Binyawanga Wainaina, V.S. Naipaul, V.Y. Mudimbe, Achille Mbembe and Mahmood Mamdani. Bi-weekly short assignments, assigned forms of participation, 1 major research project.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course. This course may only be taken as ENGL Directed Reading Course or as a Cultural Studies Directed Reading Course (CUST 890*) with permission of the instructor.

Course Website
ENGL 815*Topics in Literary Study I: Imagined Ecologies
Department: English Term Available: Fall 2013 Instructor: Glenn Willmott

An ecocritical exploration of fantasy representations of human and nonhuman habitats and inhabitants in modern prose fiction, graphic narrative, and some poetry from the turn of the 20th century to the present. The focus is on “funny animals” and “dark ecologies,” and important ecocritical scholarship for the study of fictional ecologies. Evaluation will be based on one organized presentation-discussion (25%), one research paper (50%), and a series of critical reading responses (25%).

(COURSE FULL as of 15/JUL/13) Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

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ENGL 872* Reconfigurations of Vancouver’s Urban Imaginary in Contemporary Literature
Department: English Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor: Petra Fachinger

This seminar will explore representation of Vancouver in contemporary Aboriginal and Canadian fiction, drama, and poetry. Vancouver, portrayed in the media as one of the world’s most liveable and one of Canada’s most multicultural cities, has been represented more critically in contemporary literary discourse. We will discuss how texts like Burning Water, Ana Historic, and The Komagata Maru Incident challenge historical master narratives, how the feminist urban poetry of Marlatt, Quartermain, and Robertson addresses the city’s colonization, gentrification, and commodification,  how fiction set in the Downtown Eastside undermines the myth of Vancouver’s wealth and beauty, and how texts by Asian Canadian, African Canadian, and Indigenous writers present alternative histories and “remap” (Glenn Deer) the city. The seminar will be informed by critical race, decolonization, and urban and spatial theories. 

Requirements: Students will be required to make one seminar presentation (30% of final grade), participate in seminar discussion (10%), and write a final paper of 15-18 pages (60% of final grade).

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course. (8 spaces available as of 15/JUL/13) Please contact both instructor and the English Grad Chair - gradengl@queensu.ca for permission to take this course.

Course Website

ENGL 877* Topics in Postcolonial Literatures II: Postcolonialism – Hopes and Impediments

Department: English Term Available: Winter 2014
Instructor: Asha Varadharajan

This course will serve as a broad introduction to the historical depth and geographical scope of what has come to be known as the "postcolonial" condition. We will read Anglophone fiction, poetry, and drama from colonies of the British Empire contending with the cultural, political, economic, and psychic legacy of imperialism with and against non-fiction, manifestos, historiography, theory, and visual, digital, performance, and aural/oral cultural production. The emphasis in this course will be on postcolonial "writing" as a passionate and tongue-in-cheek repudiation and rearticulation of colonial language, values, and systems. Some of the questions we might ask are: what does it mean for postcolonial subjects to describe themselves as "black skins, white masks?" how do postcolonial writers communicate in a language not their own, an experience all their own (Chinua Achebe)? how has the colonial experience contributed to the current shape of our world--its economic disparities and its social and cultural melange? what is the difference between mimic and creole identities? how do gender and sexuality intersect with postcoloniality? how has the long history of independence from colonization altered the literary forms and socio-political and cultural concerns of postcolonial writing? how has the shift to the environmental, the diasporic, the global, the multicultural, the cosmopolitan, the biopolitical and the animal (to name a few!) diluted or enhanced the force of anti-colonial struggle? Evaluation: Participation 20%, Research paper 50%, Seminar 30%

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course. (8 spaces available as of 15/JUL/13) Please contact both instructor and the English Grad Chair - gradengl@queensu.ca for permission to take this course.
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ENSC 801*  Methodological and Conceptual Basis for Environmental Studies

Department: School of Environmental Studies Term Available: Fall 2013 Instructor: Mick Smith

The course examines methodological and conceptual issues arising from Environmental Studies position as an inter-, multi- and/or trans-disciplinary practice. It will focus on the inherent difficulties in overcoming disciplinary fragmentation in approaches to studying complex issues in environmental sustainability that require integrated understandings of the inter-relations between social and natural systems. The course will promote methodological literacy beyond student's own area of expertise, develop critical and reflexive thinking about how environmental studies might approach issues of sustainability, and encourage and facilitate communication across disciplinary paradigms. The course precedes and compliments ENSC-802, familiarizing students with the historical origins, philosophical underpinnings and practical deployment of key approaches within the social and natural sciences and humanities. Three term-hours.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.
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GNDS 428* Gender Performance

Department: Gender Studies Term Available: Fall 2013
Instructor: Jane Tolmie
This advanced seminar addresses some of the many meanings and manifestations of “gender performance” in literature and popular culture. Primary sources include a wide variety of media -- novels, plays, poems, films, magazines and cartoons. Sample sources: works by William Shakespeare, Virginia Woolf, Elizabeth Bishop, Sarah Waters, David Henry Hwang, Diane DiMassa, Ian Iqbal Rashid; films such as Osama, The Ballad of Little Jo, Tootsie; postcards, Playboy, Ms. Magazine, news articles and advertisements. Primary material will be balanced with careful consideration of work in areas such as feminist theory, identity politics, queer and performance theory. The course is divided into distinct theme-based units, e.g. transvestism, gender identity, etiquette, beauty and the body, regulation of the household, violence, maternity, the trans community. Cross-listed with English. PREREQUISITES: Third or Fourth-year standing in Gender Studies or SXGD or permission of the Department.
Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course. This course may only be taken as GNDS Directed Reading Course or as a Cultural Studies Directed Reading Course (CUST 890*) with permission of the instructor.

GNDS 801* Issues in Gender and Sexuality

Department: Gender Studies Term Available: Fall 2013
Instructor:  Katherine McKittrick
The seminar will address the ways in which the history of colonialism and transatlantic slavery anticipated contemporary struggles over identity, place, and politics. Texts and discussions will explore how promises of modernity—specifically freedom embodied and articulated as reason, progress, liberal democracy, civility—are underwritten by particular racial-sexual unfreedoms that, paradoxically, bolster facile feminist, queer, and anti-racist emancipatory projects that thrive on accumulation, authenticity and practices of violence and exclusion. Central to and amidst the paradoxes of modernity, exclusion, emancipation, will be texts and discussions that draw attention to the creative, intellectual, and alternative emancipatory strategies of subaltern communities.
Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.
Course Syllabus

GNDS 802* Feminist Methodologies

Department: Gender Studies Term Available: Winter 2014
Instructor:  Margaret Little
The course will attend to historical and contemporary methodological approaches to gender studies, women’s studies, and feminist studies, with specific emphasis on interdisciplinarity. The goal of the course is to think about engaging researchers in non-oppressive politics of knowledge production and the utilization of this knowledge in processes of social change. Methodological issues explored will include autoethnography, feminist epistemology, insider/outsider dynamics, and reflexivity and voice, while specific methods could include analysis of literary texts, discourse analysis, oral histories, in-depth interviewing, archival research and survey methods according to faculty and student interest and need. If you are not a GNDS MA student, you must seek approval from the instructor to enroll in this course. When emailing the instructor for permission please specify your background knowledge in the topic and why this course will be useful to your continued studies.
Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

GNDS 821* Critical Digital Pedagogies

Department: Gender Studies Term Available: Winter 2014
Instructor:  Scott Morgensen

This seminar introduces students to current theories of digital power. Drawing from feminist, queer, anti-racist, anti-colonial, and transnational perspectives, the course presents such case studies as: Twitter and the Arab Spring; biometrics, surveillance, and incarceration; colonial science and Indigenous genome patenting; and diasporic feminist and queer media. These areas of study will provide context for discussing digital power in the academy. The seminar creates space for graduate students to examine the increasing pressures upon academic workers to digitize knowledge, learning, and teaching. At once, students will be invited to craft new pedagogies that critically and innovatively engage the power of the digital. Students will create a teaching module in their field of study that adapts digital platforms to their critical work. For their final papers, students will work individually or collaboratively to produce original scholarship on digital power that utilizes multiple digital platforms. Students will have the opportunity to submit their works for online publication as part of the summer 2014 launch of a “Critical Digital Pedagogies” weblink at the homepage of the Department of Gender Studies.

Please see the Course Outline for more information, and contact Scott Morgensen with any questions
GPHY 869* Graduate Seminar in Social Geography: Emotional Geographies-Health, Gender, Embodiment and Emotion
Department: Geography Term Available: Instructor: Joyce Davidson

This course examines constructions of emotional health – broadly conceived to include conceptions that differ across time and space - from a number of contemporary, critical geographical perspectives. Drawing on a variety of case studies, it considers how apparently diverse but intersecting aspects of personal, social geographies - such as sexuality, gender, class and ‘race’ – impact on emotional health at various geographical scales (e.g. individual / family / community / society).

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

Course Website
HIST 338* Western World Ethnohistory
Department: History Term Available: Instructor: Caroline-Isabelle Caron

This senior seminar focusses on the way European schools of ethnohistory have tackled First World minority cultures since the 1950s, by zeroing in on the broader intersections of study that include ethnicity, race, nationality, gender, class, sexuality, (dis)ability and imperialism. Ethnohistory methods combine oral history, folklore, anthropology and sociology, to bring light on little known groups, communities, or social classes, as well as so-called «History-less» cultures. European ethnohistory since the 1960s has focussed equally between those living within the Occidental hegemony that surrounds all of us and the non-National cultures in Africa, Asia and South America. Conversely, since the mid-twentieth century, the methods and theories of American ethnohistory have evolved alongside the growing number of Native American land claims cases, and therefore has concentrated primarily on First Nations, after the Second World War. Today, ethnohistory approaches show up in a number of different fields, although the disciplines of history and anthropology contribute the greatest number of interdisciplinary scholars.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

Course Website
HIST 416* Canadian Material History
Department: History Term Available: Instructor: Caroline-Isabelle Caron

This senior seminar will introduce students to the basics of material history methodology while exploring the many meanings of the «stuff life is made of», i.e. the artefacts among which Canadians have lived since 1900, those things that have shaped Canadian identities and cultures to this day. This course will look at how artefacts can inform and enrich historical enquiry. Because historians have traditionally and primarily relied on texts, they have often overlooked artefacts, therefore ignoring the methodological frameworks found in archeology, anthropology, art history, folklore, etc., where objects are at the centre of analysis

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

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HIST 816* The Canadian Left in the Twentieth Century
Department: History Term Available:Fall/Winter 2013/2014 Instructor: Ian McKay

This course is about the Canadian left in the 20th century — specifically, the years from 1917 to 1975. It is divided into four parts. In the first part, we look at the history of the Canadian left from 1917-45, looking at such themes as the impact of the Russian Revolution, the rise of communism and social democracy, the Popular Front of the 1930s and the left’s response to the Second World War. In the second part, starting in late October, we spend three weeks exploring three concepts useful to the understanding of the wider context of left-wing politics: capitalism, liberal order, and modernity. In the third part, we revisit the history of the Canadian left from the 1910s to the 1950s, pondering leftists’ responses to three major developments — the rise of industrial unionism, the transformation of relations between men and women, and the advent of the Cold War. Finally, our five concluding sessions look at “New Leftism” and other social movements from 1945 to 1975. This course will rely on short (about 30-minute) introductory audio-visuals or brief introductions from the instructor, followed by student-led discussions of the assigned materials. A heavy emphasis will be placed on the participation of students. Regular attendance at seminars is required; more than two uncertified absences will negatively affect your grade. In October, you will produce a book review focusing on one of the three assigned course books. From November to mid-January, you will be working on two papers that, taken together, constitute the first draft of your final paper, on a mutually acceptable topic (preferably one that focuses on the period 1917-1975, engages with new archival sources, and draws upon the insights from cultural and social theory). From mid-January to late March, you will then develop this draft into the major course paper — one that we hope will join the others generated from this course that have gone on to become published articles and books on the Canadian left. The course concludes in early April. Some of the assigned books have been ordered at the Campus Bookstore, and all have been placed on three-hour reserve at the Stauffer Library. Do not buy books at the bookstore before the first sitting of the course. The readings for each session are organized in two parts. The first lists the “required readings” for the session — all participants are expected to read those that are marked with a dot [•]. Often there is a second part devoted to “additional readings,” some of which could have served very well as the required readings. They are not required readings, but will be of particular interest to students working in those specific areas. A more general bibliography, Reading The Left, will also be available on request. In general, a reading load of about 150-200 pages per week is to be expected. Notice that there is an EXTRA SESSION on 3 December 2013. On the day before each sitting of the seminar — i.e., by Monday noon — you are expected to circulate to the class (via e-mail) three “interpretive questions” that arise in your mind after you have completed the week’s readings. These will then be printed out and used as the basis of our class discussion. The student presenter(s) at each session will be expected to circulate five such questions, and use them as the basis for the student-led class discussion.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

Course Syllabus

HIST 818* Global Agrarian and Environmental History

Department: History Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor:  Emily Hill

A course on globalizing agrarian problems. Pressures on agrarian societies are considered in relation to environmental history and the history of environmentalism. An overview of relevant literature illuminates challenges and transformations since 1900, including Green Revolutions and the weakening of collectivist modes of production. Discussion of current scholarly trends examines research on past practices as patterns of ecological sustainability.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.
Course website

HIST 819*: China since 1949

Department: History Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor:  Emily Hill

The course examines how Maoist policies shaped the People's Republic of China, how the post-Mao reform programs emerged through negotiations between state and society, and the rapid, sweeping changes experienced by the Chinese people since the 1980s. A particular focus will be the local-level and the manner in which the business interests of Communist Party and military officials have shaped reform.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.
Course website
HIST 823* Canada’s Racial State
Department: History Term Available: Instructor: Barrington Walker

This course is a study of nineteenth and twentieth century Canada in the context of non-Native settler colonialism, biopolitics and human rights activism. Students will be required to lead each seminar.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

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HIST 865* Empires and Intimacies
Department: History Term Available: Instructor: Karen Dubinsky

This course explores cultural, familial and intimate relations of power created in and by empires, in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The readings are thematic and interdisciplinary, drawn from national and transnational contexts, primarily in the Americas. Topics include militarism, transculturation, visual cultures, the circulation of people and goods, racialization and sexual politics.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course. It can be taken as a full-year course, or as a HIST or CUST Directed Reading Fall-term only course.

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KHS 869*: The Body and Social Theory

Department: Kinesiology and Health Studies Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor: Samantha King
 

What is the body?A biological organism? A material essence? An expression of the soul? An instrument of the mind? A sensuous potentiality? A text? A metaphor? A discourse? An assemblage? Itself, perhaps? Forty years of intense academic interest in the body, not to mention centuries of philosophical musings prior to more recent engagements, may not have produced a conclusive answer to this question, but they do provide a sense of why and how the body comes to matter, in both senses of the term.  In this seminar, we will wrestle with a broad range of literature on the body, with the goal of keeping both its “stuffness” (Bynum, 1995), and its cultural meanings, within our collective intellectual grasp.

We will begin the course with a survey of some broad conceptual terrain (e.g., Foucauldian, feminist, postcolonial, and new materialist theories). Our focus will then turn to a number of key contexts and experiences that bodies help materialize and are in turn materialized through, including biomedicine, consumption, reproduction, sexuality, emotion, work, physical activity, and sleep. Our objectives are as follows: 1) To reflect upon what we mean by “the body” and to understand why this question matters; 2) to become familiar with key theoretical approaches and concepts used in the study of the body; 3) to consider how researching the body might contribute to the development of new theories; 4) to identify prominent intellectual debates in this field and to understand their significance; and 5) to practice advanced skills in reading, writing, and speaking about theories of the body.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

KHS 873*: Cultural Studies Methods for Kinesiology and Health

Department: Kinesiology and Health Studies Term Available: Fall 2013 Instructor:  Mary L. Adams
This seminar course explores the methodologies of cultural studies in the study of the body, health and sport/physical activity in contemporary and historical contexts. Topics may include the history of cultural studies, inter-disciplinarity, the politics of knowledge, textual analysis, and ethnographic methods.
 Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

MUSC 386* Research Issues and Bibliography in Ethnomusicology

Department: Music Term Available: Winter 2014
Instructor: Margaret Walker
An introduction to the discipline of ethnomusicology, its literature and methodology.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course as a graduate level Directed Reading Course (CUST 890*).

Course website

MUSC 470* Music Education

Department: Music Term Available: Fall 2013
Instructor: Kip Pegley
 Seminars offered by faculty related to their music education research/interests. Content varies year to year. See departmental brochure for further details.
Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course as a graduate level Directed Reading Course (CUST 890*).
Course website

PHIL 854* Special Topics in Feminist Philosophy - Sex Work

Department: Philosophy Term Available: Winter
Instructor: Jackie Davies

For feminists, sex work is a hot topic—contentious and divisive. In this country it is an especially timely topic. Challenges to the criminality of activities related to sex work are now before the Supreme Court of Canada.  But even if existing anti-sex work laws are repealed, there is plenty of room for new regulation. The need for reflection on what is at stake is pressing.

As well as applied ethical and policy questions, sex work also raises meta-ethical issues and questions about  epistemological authority.  Among those we will consider is whether sex work is inherently (or perhaps just contingently) exploitive and alienating (in a Marxist or any other sense); whether it can be a site of autonomy or necessarily involves its violation (as Kant thought); and whether the question of consent is perhaps a red herring within a culture of female subordination (as Catharine MacKinnon thinks).  What‘s in a name—prostitute, whore, or sex worker? Victims of human trafficking or migrant labourers? Who is in a position to know the answers to these questions?  Is experience necessary? Also, how is sex work gendered and does it matter?  Though most prostitutes are female and most customers are men, there are male and transgendered prostitutes and straight female and queer customers, as well as women who in one way or another live off the avails (e.g. “pimp,” or work the reception desk).  Do these variations make a difference that affects how gender shapes sex work and vice versa?  Do these variations challenge our assumptions about how we know, explore and express sexual and other parts of personal identity?  How do we consider the impact of racism, colonialism, transphobia, and the capitalist production of poverty on the buying and selling of sex without undermining the agency of those who engage in it? Are there any philosophical revelations to be had by looking at the perverse relation between the marginalization of sex workers and desires for the exotic?

Since the course will run as a seminar, preparation and participation are essential. Students will be encouraged to develop philosophical skills and insights through (optional) collaborative research as well as (mandatory) solo writing projects.  There will be opportunities for students to enhance presentation skills and their abilities to productively share critical and constructive feedback.  The instructor will present introductory lectures to frame and contextualize readings, issues and methods.  Our analyses will draw on the tools of intersectionality theory as well as feminist, critical race, disability and queer theorists, attending carefully to the political economy of sex work (especially neoliberal globalization).
Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.
Course syllabus

PHIL 893* Ethics of the Environment

Department: Philosophy Term Available: Winter 2014 Instructor: Mick Smith

This course will engage with a number of key environmental issues such as biodiversity and extinction, preservation or conservation, environmental and social justice, eco-feminism, deep ecology, bioregionalism and ecological restoration drawing on a number of philosophical traditions in ethics, hermeneutics, political philosophy, pragmatism, philosophy of science and phenomenology. The aim is to provide both an overview of the variety of topics that can be encompassed within environmental philosophy and to encourage participants to develop critical and innovative approaches to questions of direct practical import. While the focus will generally be on our ethical relations to non-human entities and our understanding and interpretation of these relations we will be particularly concerned to examine the ways in which our ethical evaluations might be informed by and inform our understandings of particular places/environments.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.
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POLS 843* Gender and Globalization  

Department: Political Studies Term Available:
Instructor: Margaret Little

Through an intersectional approach that pays attention to gender, race, sexuality, class and region this course provides a broad array of topics within gender and globalization (including: production, reproduction and sexual tourism). If you are not a POLS student you must seek approval from the instructor to enroll in this course. When emailing the instructor for permission please specify your background knowledge in the topic and why this course will be useful to your continued studies.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.
Course website

POLS 880* Gender and Politics  

Department: Political Studies Term Available:
Instructor: Margaret Little

This is the core course for doctoral students in Politics who wish to specialize in the field of Gender and Politics. This helps prepare you for your qualifying exams covering a variety of topics within the field including: representation; feminist methodology; identity; gender and work; gender and citizenship; the politics of the family; queer theory; intersectionality of race, gender and class; and gender and globalization. If you are not a POLS graduate student you must seek approval from the instructor to enroll in this course. When emailing the instructor for permission please specify your background knowledge in the topic and why this course will be useful to your continued studies.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.
Course website

RELS 886* Religious, Nature and Technology  

Department: School of Religion Term Available: Fall 2013
Instructor: James Miller
 

This is a research seminar for graduate students working in the fields of religious studies, environmental studies and cultural studies. In terms of process, this seminar will provide researchers with the opportunity of participating in an advanced reading seminar and at the same time working independently on a major project. In terms of content, the seminar also aims to develop a cross-cultural and advanced theoretical understanding of the intersections of religion, modernity, nature and technology.

 

The broad topic of the seminar is nature religion. A working definition of this concept can be given as religious beliefs and practices that take as their focus the natural world of plants, nonhuman animals, mountains, waters or other geographic features. Nature religion as a cross-cultural religious phenomenon stands as an intriguing alternative to normative understandings of religion in the modern world, in which the object of religion is taken to be a distinctly supernatural or superhuman world of gods, ghosts, spirits, or ancestors. In this normative scheme, nature religion is often associated pejoratively with “indigenous,” “primitive,” “pagan,” or “superstitious” forms of religion.

 

Analysis of this topic thus invites the interrogation of the conceptual frame of modernity and modern religious forms to understand how and why nature religion came to be categorized in this way. It invites an analysis of contemporary ideologies and cultural practices such as neo-paganism or deep ecology, which can be seen as evoking a postmodern religious or quasi-religious response to the ecological crisis, in which nature, freed from technological domination, is regarded as authentic and sacred. The seminar may also consider popular cultural products such as films and TV shows (Princess Mononoke, Avatar, Battlestar Galactica, etc.) that trade on the religion-nature-technology nexus. Finally, the seminar will engage contemporary scientific attempts to offer naturalistic explanations of religion in order to generate a fuller understanding of the conceptual interrelationship of nature and religion in modern cultural discourse.

 

The seminar thus aims to investigate what precisely is at stake in identifying human engagement with the natural world as religious. What does it mean for religious people to understand the natural world in whole or in part as “sacred”? Moreover, as regards the contemporary cultural landscape, in what sense can environmentalism as a social movement be informed by a religious vision of nature? And in what sense is the sacred quality of nature correlated with a rejection of technology as a demonic cultural force? By examining specific forms of nature religion across a variety of cultures and, at the same time, interrogating the normative taxonomies of modernity for construing both religion and nature, we will aim to deepen our collective wisdom about the ways in which human beings understand themselves in relation to the natural world.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.

Course website

SOCY 931* New Media Cultures  

Department: Sociology Term Available:  Winter 2014
Instructor: Martin Hand

This advanced course examines the sociocultural implications of ubiquitous digital media. We will situate concerns with new, emergent, and ambient media within some broader theoretical frameworks in social theory. This will require an engagement with some of the major contemporary commentators on relationships between media and culture, as we work through a series of key ideas and problems focused around intersections of theory, practice, and method. The course is organized in two parts. Part One focuses on four key dimensions of theorizing new media: infrastructures and flows; processes; materials; practices. Part Two is constructed around specific student interests, providing scope to engage with aspects of theory, forms, contexts, and practices that exemplify contemporary debates about new media in cultural sociology.

Please contact the instructor for permission to take this course.
Course website

Kingston, Ontario, Canada. K7L 3N6. 613.533.2000