Humanistic Studies

HUM 100 Conceptions of Society 3 SH
Selected readings in authors such as Socrates, Plato, Hobbes, Locke, Marx, Freud and Camus. Emphasis is given to the following topics: the origin and function of the state, the interaction of economic and political systems, the law and freedom, revolution and rebellion, happiness and the state, and the state and history. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies.

HUM 101 Our Relation to Nature 3 SH
The central concern of this course is our relationship to nature primarily as it is understood by several scientific theories and religious conceptions. At the same time, the nature of science and the nature of religion are examined. The assumptions and limitations of these human endeavors are discussed, along with the relationships among science, religion and human values. General Education: Humanities/ Humanistic Studies; Competency: First Year.

HUM 102 Art and Experience 3 SH
The emphasis in this course is on relating art, literature, music, dance and drama to our lives. The course aims at uncovering the central problems of the arts, the relationship of the arts to our lives, the role of the arts in our society, the kind of arts we have produced and the conditions under which we have produced them, and some of the controlling ideas which have been given expression in our arts. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies; Competency: First Year.

HUM 110 Moral Issues in Modern Society 3 SH
A critical introduction to some of the major moral issues facing us in modern society. Problems concerning the rights of the individual vs. the limits and obligations of government, sexual morality, and violence and war will be analyzed. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies; Competency: Oral Communication and Critical Thinking.

HUM 114 The Greek Experience 3 SH
A course designed to provide the student with a broad survey of ancient Greek culture through an introductory examination of its mythology, art, drama and philosophy. Competency: First Year.

HUM 115 Philosophical Issues in Literature 3 SH
A study of central philosophical problems concerning human nature, our relationship to society, and the desire for meaning as found in literature. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies.

HUM 116 The Human Condition 3 SH
Reflection on the human condition as set forth in contemporary images of humanity in selected works of literature, philosophy, psychology and religious thought. Considers the work of important thinkers who have influenced humanity in their quest for an understanding of the self and for meaningful personal and social direction. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies.

HUM 119 The Human Adventure: Journeys, Quests and Pilgrimages 3 SH
This course will explore the broad theme of the journey in a variety of readings ranging from mythology and adventure sagas through modern autobiography and spiritual allegories. The emphasis will be on specific humanistic issues, including the search for wisdom, the problem of evil, the vision of progress and the articulation of moral values. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies; Competency: First Year.

HUM 120 The Search for Meaning in Contemporary America 3 SH
This course will explore the challenges that Americans face in creating a meaningful life and examine a number of possible solutions to this critical life task: narcissism, materialism, romantic love, work and community. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies; Competency: First Year.

HUM 124 The Roman Experience 3 SH
The course is an interdisciplinary introduction to the culture of Ancient Rome in the Classical period—roughly from 200 BCE to 200 CE. Our approach will zigzag between studies of contemporary research in Roman social history and readings of classical Roman texts in history, politics, philosophy, and literature, and culminate in a complete reading of Virgil’s Aeneid. Competency: First Year.

HUM 151 Introduction to Interdisciplinary Studies 3 SH
Each time the course is offered it will focus on a different question, problem or theme that is especially conducive to an interdisciplinary approach. Students will study various interdisciplinary theories, strategies and case studies and then apply them to the particular topic chosen for each class.  Competency: Oral Communication, Creative Process.

HUM 212 Technology and Humanity 3 SH
The exponential rate of technological advances in computer and biological sciences is beginning to blur the boundaries between man and machine. Innovations, like pace-makers, cochlear implants, insulin pump wristwatch, and brain-controlled prosthetic limbs, are extending and expanding our bodily capacities. In 2012, Oscar Pistorius ran in the Olympics on prosthetic legs and Dick Cheney appeared on The View carrying his heart in a suitcase. At the same time genetic engineering has created life with a DNA synthesizer, and is personalizing the treatment of many diseases with genomic based diagnosis. The cloning and genetic manipulation of mammals is proceeding unabatedly and with virtually no oversight. And from the machine side of this equation, disaggregated neural tissue has been organized into computational devices and insects and mammals are being hardwired for joystick controller and piloted like remote-controlled toys. A greater and more critical awareness of these advances and the moral and sociological issues that accompany them will better prepare students for the challenges our society faces. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies; Competency: Critical Thinking, Information Literacy.

HUM 213 Artificial Intelligence: Minds and Machines 3 SH
This course brings together computer science, philosophy of mind, and cognitive science to address conceptual issues surrounding artificial intelligence. The course will include topics such as: the nature of the mind, including theories of functionalism, dualism, and physicalism; proposed criteria for AI, including the Turing test; problems specific to research programs associated with AI, including the problem of intentionality and the frame problem. Competency: Critical Thinking, Information Technology.

HUM 222 Sustainability: Economics, Ecology, Ethics 3 SH
This interdisciplinary course will study sustainable living from the perspectives of economics (business), ecology (science), and ethics (philosophy). Particular attention will be focused on understanding how our personal decisions can impact sustainability on local and even global levels. Competency: Information Literacy, Health & Wellness.

HUM 226 EcoPhilosophy & The American Conservation Movement 3 SH
Using the American Conservation Movement as a starting point, this survey course will explore theories of human connection to nature and the socio-political and ethical issues associated with the environmental concerns future generations are likely to face. Students will examine concepts such as conservation and reclamation, environmental ethics and justice, ecofeminism, sustainability and economic development, biodiversity, ecology, and the biophilia hypothesis. This course will be supportive of more focused courses in biology, social science, political science, and history. Through a critical focus on the philosophic underpinning of the conservation movement and an examination of current theories and research into resource and environmental management, students will gain valuable insight into the demands our society is and will contend with in the future. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies.

HUM 230 Madness and Civilization 3 SH
This course is an interdisciplinary study of the various phenomena that have been classified as “madness” throughout history. The course will utilize the perspectives of history, psychology, religion and philosophy to explore these diverse phenomena and the tension between madness and civilization in several different cultures. Competency: Writing 2, Intercultural.

HUM 242 Gnosticism 3 SH
This class will look at various manifestations of Gnosticism in relation to society, the arts and philosophy as well as power. We will explore this topic through history, literature, art, philosophy, politics and theology. General Education: Humanistic Studies.

HUM 243 Mysticism 3 SH
This class will consider mystic themes in Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, stoicism, Zen, Sufism, and Kabbalah. This purpose of this class is first to come to some kind of understanding as to what mysticism is. Who counts as a mystic? What is the mystical experience like? If there is an underlying “principle of existence” to reality, what is it like and how can we access it? The second is to see the ways in which traditions far removed from each other in both time and space compare with their notions of mystic truths. Throughout we will compare certain recurring themes as they are addressed through each tradition: creation myths, self-responsibility vs. God and fate, the nature of ultimate reality, and ethics. Competency: Intercultural, Writing 2.

HUM 244 Christianity: Religion, Politics, Art 3 SH
This course is an interdisciplinary study of Christianity through the perspectives of religion, politics and art. The course will focus on Christian cultures in four periods: Early Christianity, the Italian Renaissance, the Reformation, and the New England colonies. Competency: Critical Thinking, Intercultural.

HUM 245 Comparative Religions 3 SH
This course employs a broad humanities approach embracing historical, aesthetic, psychological, philosophical and sociological aspects of religion. Major faiths such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Confuciansim, Taoism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam will be studied and compared.  General Education: Humanistic Studies; Competency: Intercultural, Writing 2

HUM 250 Art and Death 3 SH
This class will explore a number of philosophical questions about the nature of death and dying through the lens of art, such as: What is death? Can one outlive one’s death? Would immortality be a good thing? Through painting, film and literature we will examine how fundamental questions concerning mortality have been expressed in art through the ages. We will consider how artistic representation can help us get a grip on theoretical questions about the nature of death, and also how art can help to challenge our unexamined assumptions about mortality. Competency: Creative Process, Oral Communication.

HUM 251 Philosophical Issues in Literature 3 SH
A study of central philosophical problems concerning human nature, our relationship to society, and the desire for meaning as found in literature. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies; Competency: Oral Communication, Creative Process.

HUM 262 The Family and the State 3 SH
This class will look at various manifestations of the family in relation to society and the state. We will explore this topic through history, literature, art, philosophy, politics and theology. General Education: Humanistic Studies.

HUM 263 Love in Western Civilization 3 SH
A critical examination of major ideas and ideals of love as they have developed throughout Western history. General Education: Humanities/Humanistic Studies; Competency: Critical Thinking, Oral Communication.

HUM 280 Marx and Marxism 3 SH
An interdisciplinary study of the many ideas, arguments, and events that fall under the umbrella of “Marx and Marxism.” This class will use the perspectives of history, economics, cultural theory and philosophy to explore the meaning and the continuing legacy of Marx and Marxism. Competency: Critical Thinking, Writing 2.

HUM 298 Faculty Developed Study 1-6 SH
HUM 299 Student Developed Study 1–6 SH

 

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