HOPR 2953 sophomore Year Seminars

HOPR 2953: Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Blaxploitation Films
Tues 11 am – 12:40 pm
Angelique Harris, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Social and Cultural Sciences

Course Description: This course will examine representations of race, gender, and sexuality in the blaxploitation film genre – a series of films made between the late 1960s to mid-1970s that highlighted the challenges facing urban African American communities. Blaxploitation films captured a particularly tumultuous time in American history. Soon after the civil rights movement, and during the nascent Black power, women’s, and gay rights movements, young African American audiences applauded these controversial films while others within African American communities blamed them for being both exploitative and stereotypical. Sociological, cultural, feminist, film, critical race, and queer theories will be used to explore the social issues and community concerns presented in these films as well as how they have influenced modern film and cultural representations of race, gender, and sexuality. Through the analysis of these films, this course will prepare students to critically observe and analyze how these films, as well as more modern films, influence the portrayal of minorities within American culture.

HOPR 2953: Mindful Knitting
Tues 9:30 am – 11:10 am
Susanne Foster, Associate Professor of Philosophy

Course Description: We all know, too well, the ways in which our world divides us between a multitude of things we must remember and do; how it dissociates us from the here and the now, the present task, those we are currently with, ourselves. Mindfulness is a contemplative practice designed to bring the practitioner into the present moment. By stilling the mind, and unifying our energies on one task, it creates a healing calm. Simple repetitious tasks like knitting lend themselves to mindful meditation. And unlike breathing or stepping, knitting creates a record of the meditation. By repeating the same simple stitch over and over, the knitter creates a fabric, whether a scarf or a wash cloth or a sweater. Manning’s book takes advantage of this fact to focus the mindfulness onto the warmth and comfort of the scarf that is the first project, the gratitude and generosity toward the recipient of the three wash cloths that are crafted as a gift for the second project, and so on. This course is open to those with no knitting experience as well as those with advanced knitting skills.

HOPR 2953:  Sex, Faith and Culture
Mon 4 – 5:40 pm
Kathy Coffey-Guenther, Associate Vice President of Mission and Ministry

Course Description: The purpose of this seminar is to invite students to think critically about the integration of faith and culture as affects norms regarding healthy sexuality in general, and as concerns their own healthy decision making apropos healthy sexuality in their own lives.  This seminar will use several tools to assist students in this learning endeavor. Students will be exposed to speakers from several different religious and faith traditions, including Roman Catholicism, regarding perceptions of the human person, the human body, sexuality, sexual mores and values, gender roles and faith-based cultural expectations. 

HOPR 2953:  Peace: A Dream Unfolding
Wed 10 – 11:40 am
Patrick Kennelly, Associate Director, Center for Peacemaking

Course Description: Dr. King and Gandhi are credited with mainstreaming nonviolence as an effective strategy for social change. Over the past 100 years, nonviolence has gained popularity as individuals such as Gene Sharp, Thich Nhat Han, Desmond Tutu, Caesar Chavez, Aung San Suu Kyi, and the Dali Lama have highlighted and popularized the transformative power of nonviolence to overcome seemingly intractable conflicts. These nonviolent leaders have inspired a new generation of nonviolent practitioners who continue to advance nonviolence as a philosophy, lifestyle, and method of social change. Those who use nonviolent methods have worked to create political change, oppose foreign occupations, resist colonialism, secure civil, women’s, laborers and human rights, reduce community violence and militarism, while simultaneously promoting good governance and drawing media attention to the issue. With a particular focus on the leaders of nonviolent movements in Milwaukee and Afghanistan, this seminar will introduce students to the practice of nonviolence and leaders of nonviolent movements. Through discussion, guest speakers, and Skype conversations students will connect with nonviolent peacemakers in Milwaukee, across the nation, and around the globe. Students will be challenged to examine the following: How and why these leaders are using nonviolence to create peaceful communities; how people are organizing nonviolent movements to create social change; how nonviolence can be used in community organizing and conflict transformation; what skills are necessary for practicing and disseminating nonviolence; what motivates and sustains nonviolent leaders; how students can develop as nonviolent leaders and how students can use nonviolence to engage their communities.

HOPR 2953:  Lights, Camera, Activism
Tues 4 – 5:40 pm
Eric Kowalik, Instructional Designer, Libraries/Research and Instructional Services

Course Description: Kony 2012 is one example of how video can empower people and effect social change. This course will provide an introduction to the history, practice, and application of video as a tool of social expression, advocacy, and activism. By understanding the basic history of the video medium as a tool for social change, expression and examining various examples of activist filmmaking, students will develop the needed skill set to produce and screen a 5-minute issue-based video in hopes of fostering community engagement regarding the subject matter of the video.

HOPR 2953:  Contemplation and the Arts
Thur 4 – 5:40 pm
Susan Mountin, Director, Manresa for Faculty, Center for Teaching and Learning

Course Description: Consider these words: contemplation, quiet, reflection, beauty, art, music, poetry, dance, drama, words, nature.   Can one “lose oneself” in the beauty of a moment, in front of a work of art, a dance, the lake, or listening to music.  This course will be an experience of “losing oneself” so that instead “one may be found” since some say that is the purpose of contemplation. But what is contemplation?  How do we do it?  Can we practice it? Do we know it when we experience it? This class will explore ways in which we open ourselves up to the transcendent through art.   That practice helps us become more ourselves and can be a continuous unfolding of the divine and oneself. Another set of questions will pertain to “art.”  What is art?  What isn’t?  Do we know art when we see it?  Are art and beauty to be equated with each other?  How do the arts help us to connect with the transcendent?  This course will include techniques for relaxation and reflection, practices in contemplation, Ignatian reflection, and ample opportunities to immerse oneself for extended periods of time in a wide variety of arts from music in symphonies to gospel and/or art  (using visits to the art museums, internet sources, etc.) The music and art will be the source for contemplation recognizing both the beautiful and also the challenging images created aurally or visually.

HOPR 2953:  Contemplation and the Arts
Wed 4 – 5:40 pm
Jeanne Hossenlopp, Vice Provost for Research/Dean Graduate School

Course Description: The course will be geared especially for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) students, though others are eligible, and it will introduce students to research across field and disciplinary boundaries (a model that is becoming increasingly common) and to research partnerships between university and other community entities, a subject on which Dr. Hossenlopp is especially expert.  We want to offer this seminar to Honors sophomores and first-years interested especially in research, in the hopes that it will help equip you to do cutting-edge work as juniors and seniors.  For that reason we’re reserving 10 places in the course for rising sophomores and 10 places for entering first-years. 




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