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Current Course Offerings

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Summer 2021 -- June 7-August 12

Interpreting the Past: Historicizing the Personal: Storytelling and Local/Familial Histories (MALS622-010)

Instructor: Bernard McKenna

Tuesdays, 6-9 p.m.

The course focuses on primary-source resources to "tell stories" about people, places, or businesses.  For instance, a student could choose to research an individual, a family, a home, a neighborhood, or even a photograph. 

Fall 2021 - August 31-December 9

The Arts in Context: Identity, Literature and Society (MALS617-010)

  • Wednesdays, 5:30-8:30 p.m.
  • Instructor: Santhi Leon
  • Baylor Women's Correctional Institution (in person)

This INSIDE/OUT class focuses on deep reading of several forms of literature. The class investigates the role of identity in literature vis-a-vis authorship, readership and central characters, and uses literature as a window into social views of identity. Assigned material explores the particular themes of voice, agency, cultural difference and social structure.

The Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program (Inside-Out) is an international educational program based in Philadelphia at Temple University. The program provides individuals on both sides of the prison walls the unique opportunity to engage in a collaborative, dialogic examination of issues of social significance. The class will be held at Baylor Women's Correctional Institution with MALS students (and perhaps a few undergrads) from UD and women who are incarcerated at Baylor.

Registration requires permission of instructor:

Black in America: African American Writers (MALS667)

We will explore works by African American writers through fiction, non-fiction, film, drama, poetry, and song. Experience the works of Alice Dunbar Nelson*, James Weldon Johnson, Toni Morrison, Nafissa Thompson-Spires; Share in the creations of Lorraine Hansberry, Ava Duvernary, Misha Green, and Bryan Stevenson*; Connect with the artistry of Sonia Sanchez, Nikki Finney, Nnamdi Chukwuocha and Al Mills*, and Jericho Brown  as they all depict lived experiences and interpret social, political, and cultural realities.  Students will complete a written midterm and develop a final project that will help advance their writing goals. 


Consistency and Change in U.S. Foreign Policy (MALS667)

  • Thursdays, 6-9 p.m.
  • Instructor: John Quintus
  • Newark Campus (in person)

This course will examine U.S. foreign policy, focusing on the period from WWII to the present.  It will reveal two essentially divergent paths in American foreign policy, the first arguing that commercial and security interests dominate (and should dominate) American foreign policy, the second proposing that furthering democratic and human rights institutions abroad helps to insure security at home while making the world more democratic and less likely to wage war.  Some political scientists believe that these divergent impulses can be traced to concepts of government first embraced and articulated by Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson.

The course will study specific policies that have emerged over the decades and thus will attempt to define some level of consistency in American foreign policy.  The class will also investigate significant changes in policies as demonstrated by particular presidential administrations, including of course the current one.

There will be one required textbook for the course and several recommended readings.  Students will prepare brief news summaries for each class meeting.  A research paper will be due at the end of the semester.  See the syllabus for details.

Click here for a sample syllabus: Foreign Policy Syllabus F2021 DRAFT.pdf

 Race in Museums: Black Bodies on Display (MALS645)

  • Thursdays, 2-5 p.m.
  • Instructor: Julie McGee
  • Newark Campus (in person)

The complex and performative nature of museums vis-a-vis race, remembrance and reconciliation with a focus on Black American and African Diasporic history and culture. What role[s] do objects, history, and culture perform under such curatorial and museum mandates and visions? How do changing socio-political and cultural landscapes and challenges to representational politics shape museum practices? Considered here are black cultural institutions, their formation and foundation as well as exhibition histories of black visual art and culture. (Cross-listed with Africana Studies and Museum Studies).

Environmental Ethics (MALS648)

  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3:30-4:45 p.m.
  • Instructor: Tom Powers
  • Newark Campus (in person)

Ethical problems associated with environmental protection, local, national, and international. Relations to social and political movements. Seminar format. (Cross-listed with Philosophy and Urban Affairs & Public Policy.)

Click here for a sample syllabus: MALS 648 Environmental Ethics Syllabus_draft.pdf

Acceptance and Resistance to Innovation (ENTR610)

  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, 5-6:15 p.m.
  • Instructor: Sujata Bhatia
  • Newark Campus (in person)/virtual option available

This course will discuss the factors that influence societal acceptance of innovations, and will specifically address the social aspects of innovation and technological evolution. In order for an innovation to have impact, and in order for an entrepreneur to be successful, the innovation must gain acceptance within the broader society. Why are novel technologies readily accepted in some communities, yet resisted in other communities? In the course, students will learn through case studies of historical technologies such as the printing press, electricity, and farm mechanization, as well as contemporary and emerging technologies such as genetically modified foods, solar energy, nuclear power, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, and virtual reality. Some case studies will be inspired by, but not limited to, the Grand Challenges for Engineering as identified by the National Academy of Engineering. Students will thereby develop insights into society’s most pressing needs; gain exposure to technologies from a variety of technical disciplines; and appreciate the social dimensions of each technology.

In this course, students will recognize that novel technologies can create both winners and losers in society, and will formulate strategies for maximizing beneficial impact, inclusivity, and societal acceptance of innovations. Since the ultimate goal of technology is to improve the quality of life for all, we must be cognizant of not only the technical feasibility of our designs, but also the social impact on humanity, as well as the environmental impact on our shared planet. Students will discuss the moral, ethical, social and cultural dimensions of the engineering innovations, as well as the technical and economic feasibility of engineering designs. Diverse students with a variety of interests and backgrounds outside of engineering will benefit from this course, including (but not restricted to) sociology, economics, philosophy, science, history, business, education, and public policy. This course will serve both engineering and non-engineering students, by providing a framework for students to evaluate the societal impact of novel technologies, reason quantitatively, and formulate inclusive strategies for overcoming resistance to new innovations. Click here for a draft syllabus: ENTR Acceptance Resistance Innovation 2021.pdf.

Race and Inequality in Delaware (HIST660)

One of the first in a series of new seminars created out of the UD Anti-Racism Initiative, the Fall 2021 edition of HIST 460/660 will explore the history of UD in the age of enslavement and emancipation. We will work collaboratively to investigate the university’s historical ties to slavery and its relationship to neighboring communities of indentured, enslaved, and free people of color. Students will conduct archival research, work with community historians, and publicly engage the UD and Newark communities in conversation about the ramifications of past social injustice. The course is cross-listed with ENGL, AFRA, ANTH, and GEOG.

Introduction to Graduate Liberal Studies (MALS601-010)

  • Mondays, 6-9 p.m.
  • Instructors:  Aimee GeeTara Kee
  • Hybrid--online via Zoom with four in person classes on the Newark Campus

A gateway experience for incoming MALS students. Students learn the conventions and expectations of graduate-level reading, writing, research, and critical analysis and explore the concept of interdisciplinarity. Topics include documentation of sources, formulation and development of independent research projects, research methods, use of online databases. The content will be interdisciplinary and/or intercultural, and the course methodology will include lecture, discussion, independent research, and varied forms of academic writing.

Click here for a sample syllabus: MALS601 Syllabus Fall 2020.pdf

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