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Current Course Offerings

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Spring 2018--Classes begin February 5

The Arts in Context: Drama in Performance (MALS617-010)

  • Tuesdays, 6-9 p.m.
  • Instructor: Kevin Kerrane

This course proceeds from the premise that drama is designed to be performed, not just read.  To that end, we will focus on Spring 2018 productions by UD's Resident Ensemble Players, and several members of that group will be visiting our class.  Other visitors will include directors, designers, and reviewers.  In addition, we'll look for opportunities to attend plays off campus, including optional trips to Wilmington and Philadelphia.  The course will also include a unit on film adaptation, and each student can choose one work by a major playwright (such as Shakespeare, Tennessee Williams, or August Wilson) to see ways that a movie reworks a dramatic text.  "Drama in Performance" will not require acting talent (as the professor himself will illustrate), but each class meeting will include brief, unrehearsed readings from the plays being discussed.

Two Cultures: Four Epochs (MALS667-011)

  • Wednesdays, 6-9 p.m.
  • Instructor: John Jungck

This course will focus on iSTEAM (Interdisciplinary Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics). We will address the classic division between STEM and the arts and humanities and how we might build a "Third Culture." We will couple four plays/movies with counterparts in science, technology, and society texts: Bertolt Brecht's Galileo with his notion of revolutionary theater with Thomas S. Kuhn's Structure of Scientific Revolutions; Jerome Lawrence's and Robert Edwin Lee's Inherit the Wind with Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species as an abolitionist anti-slavery, anti-racism thesis; Anna Ziegler's play Photograph 51 about Rosalind Franklin's role in the discovery of the structure of DNA with Anne Fausto Sterling's Myths of Gender: Biological Theories about Women and Men on sexism in science;  and Margot Lee Shetterly's Hidden Figures: The Story of the African-American Women Who Helped Win the Space Race with Robert Moses and Charles Cobb's Radical Equations: Math Literacy and Civil Rights.

Who, or What, Drives History? (MALS667-012)

  • Thursdays, 6-9 p.m.
  • Instructor: Raymond Callahan

Historians have long argued about what powers historical change.  The dominant answer, until after World War II, was: great individuals (usually Great Men).  Then historians began to widen their view: demographic changes, climate change, new technologies, the rise of new social groups (or the rediscovery of neglected ones), new ideas--all these seemed of greater import than any individual, no matter how dazzling (or horrifying).  Focus on the individual became the province of biographers, with whom historians were often reluctant to claim kinship, or, worse yet, the playground of novelists, playwrights and film makers.  The argument goes on, and we will join it in this seminar.  We will look at a trio of great figures: Elizabeth I, Winston Churchill--and each student will fill out the trio with a person they choose to investigate.

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