Courses of Study
[IS126] The Green Cluster Students explore central questions in environmental philosophy, ethics, and politics, and learn the history, theory, and practice of environmental activism as they pursue their own activist projects. See Environmental Studies 126, and Philosophy 126 for course descriptions. Satisfies the First-year Writing (W1) and Social Science (S) distribution requirements. Eight credit hours.
[IS135] New York-Berlin: Modernism and its Discontents New York and Berlin remain iconic locations of aesthetic, political, and social transformation. This two-course cluster asks what these pivotal cities of the 20th and 21st centuries—cities that occupy visual imaginations, underwrite ideals of social utopia, and destroy dreams and lives—teach us about the powerful forces that shape our worlds. We engage a range of cultural "texts", from movies to literature to the built environment, and we situate them in larger historical, political, and economic contexts. An all-expenses-paid field trip to New York is central. See American Studies 135B and German 135 for course descriptions. Satisfies the First-Year Writing (W1), Arts (A), and Social Science (S) requirements. Eight credit hours.
IS138f New World Disorder: America between the Wars, 1919-1939 The United States emerged from World War I as the world's richest and most powerful nation, but Americans found this no guarantee of individual happiness, social peace, economic security, or political stability. This three-course integrated study examines the sources of Americans' soaring hopes and profound discontents; how literature expressed the yearnings and disappointments of intellectuals, African Americans, immigrants, and other groups; and how philosophers sought meaning in an age when nothing in life or logic seemed assured. See English 138, History 138, Philosophy 138 for course descriptions. Satisfies the First-Year Writing (W1), Historical Studies (H), Literature (L), and Social Sciences (S) requirements. Twelve credit hours. Cohen, Stubbs, Weisbrot
IS140f Understanding Law The "rule of law" has often been contrasted with the "rule of men;" the basic idea is that it is better to be governed by impartial principles, fairly applied, than to be subject to the arbitrary decisions of some individual ruler — whoever that may be. But what is law? Different societies have adopted a variety of different legal systems with distinctive institutions and divergent principles. Are Islamic law and U.S. law fundamentally incompatible, or do they share important commonalities? We will explore these two quite different systems of law while also looking at philosophical reflections and literary narratives. See Government 140A and 140B, and History 140 for course descriptions. Satisfies the First-Year Writing (W1), Historical Studies (H), Literature (L), and Social Sciences (S) requirements. Twelve credit hours. Lee, Reisert, Turner
[IS224] Global Maine While Maine remains the whitest state in the union, demographic trends are rapidly changing many regions. Refugees, asylum seekers, medical and high-technology workers, undocumented farmworkers, and guest workers in the hospitality industry are transforming urban and rural areas alike. This two-course cluster introduces the diversity of immigrant experiences in Maine through ethnographic readings as well as collaborative documentary work with immigrant and immigrant-support organizations. It provides training in documentary techniques and the opportunity to create films with immigrant and immigrant-support community partners in Lewiston and Portland. See Anthropology 224 and Global Studies 224 for course descriptions. Satisfies Social Sciences (S) and U.S. Diversity (U) requirements. Eight credit hours.