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Spring 2015 Inquiry Seminar (INQS 125) Course Descriptions

INQS 125 Globetrotters – Students will explore a variety of ways that people encounter, and experience, other cultures: in their own families, through study abroad, international travel, immigration/emigration, pioneering, business, love, etc. Students will read travel writing, journal articles, a historical novel, and other texts; create oral histories (including family interviews), and host international guests. 4 credits.

INQS 125 Illness, Healers and the Writing Life – Few fields have transformed contemporary life as much as modern medicine. As the medical capacity to rescue the human body from its frailties has expanded, those who enter contemporary healing professions face escalating moral, ethical and metaphysical challenges. Not surprisingly, a rich literature has been created about the healing enterprise, often written by healers themselves. Explore the literary treatments of medicine that range across genres (fiction, non-fiction, poetry, film) and examine how medical personnel function in radically different contexts. In the process we will look closely at own perspectives on the intersections of science, suffering, healing, and culture in our lives. 4 credits.

INQS 125: Literary Adaptation – What meaning do centuriesold plays and novels hold for us today? How have literary works been adapted to fit the interests of different audiences? What do adaptations reveal and what do they conceal? What standards should we use to judge them? We will consider cases ranging from the works of Shakespeare and Jane Austen to contemporary film and digital media, with an emphasis on close reading and contextual research. 4 credits.

INQS 125 Nuclear Society – Nuclear technologies are ubiquitous, and they influence energy policy, foreign policy, religious debate, pop culture, and contemporary medicine. Examine the underlying science and history of nuclear technology in order to explore the variety of issues it raises. From the discovery of radioactivity, the creation of the atomic bomb, to the development of nuclear power and other modern nuclear technologies, students will explore the fundamentals of nuclear science and investigate its impact upon their world. 4 credits.

INQS 125 War! Ecological and Cultural Perspectives – What is “war”, and why is it so much a part of human experience? Ecological, archaeological and anthropological perspectives on origins, causes, nature, and effects of war on human societies and cultures. 4 credits.