HIV/AIDS with Prof. Stewart-Winter
21:512:226:01 (Note this course can count as US or as an elective)

This course will examine the social, cultural, and political history of HIV/AIDS in the US in the 1980s and 1990s. In 1981, news reports covered a mysterious new disease (AIDS) that attacked the human immune system and seemed to affect primarily gay men. Eventually, the disease was traced to a virus, HIV. Like the coronavirus, AIDS devastated vulnerable communities and led to changes in biomedicine, politics, public policy, and the arts, and disproportionately affected Black Americans. What can we learn from the similarities and differences between these two public health crises? How can the history of HIV/AIDS inform our responses to the coronavirus pandemic? With particular attention to media coverage, this course will examine the changes brought about by the HIV/AIDS crisis, including biomedical research, activism and protest, and rituals of remembrance and resistance.

Our Planet Crisis - Global Warming and Food with Prof. Tchen
21:512:226:02 (Note this course can count as US or as an elective)

Scientists—thousands of them, the best in the world, correlating big data—are projecting we earthlings have a T-minus ten-year window to zero carbon emissions into the air and waters before our ozone layer becomes like swiss cheese.

  • What’s the science behind the UN IPCC predictions?
  • How can Indigenous Local Knowledge guide us in our region?
  • What does it mean for our water, air, and soil—our food?

Rather than lead our daily lives as usual, how can we rewire and hack our routines to start making a difference? This research seminar opens up social and racial justice questions beginning with our lives then impacts the whole campus, to our families, and to our communities. Our class will become a lab reimagining our power to understand and act in and outside the Zoom-o-sphere.

All of us, especially Indigenous and descendants of the enslaved, neighbors, newcomers, and strangers in all shapes and sizes, will need to combine our strengths and insights to grapple with global warming—the most important threat to our future. 

History of Hinduisms with Prof. Truschke
21:510:226 (Note this course can count as Asian, African, Latin American, Comparative or as an elective)

In this course, we analyze the development of Hindu traditions from 3,500 years ago until the present day, emphasizing the diverse forms of Hinduism in different times and places. We begin by considering the notably recent category of “Hinduism” and identify key concepts that will guide our study. We will read selections from a range of theological texts, epics, and stories of the gods and goddesses that have permeated many aspects of daily Hindu life. We will also emphasize ritual activities, the importance of visual experiences in temples, and networks of pilgrimage places that dot the subcontinent. Last, we will survey some of the many modern incarnations of Hinduism throughout South Asia and the diaspora. By the conclusion of this course, students will be conversant in the major texts, beliefs, and practices of Hindu traditions in their cultural and historical contexts and also have a working knowledge of basic categories important for the study of religion more broadly.

Topics in American Political History: Constitutions and the Founding of the American Republic, A Virtual Exchange course with Pembroke College, Oxford University w/ Prof. Murphy

This course will explore the founding of the United States through the framing of both the United States Constitution and the New Jersey state constitution. It will cover the origins and principles of American constitutional thought from the colonial period through the nineteenth century, and issues such as slavery, secession, the judiciary, the structure of the American republic, the Civil War, and economic policies. The course will be conducted by both Prof. Murphy and Dr. Nicholas Cole of Pembroke College, Oxford University, and offer students unique research opportunities to contribute to a digital platform documenting the New Jersey state constitutional convention. The course will meet virtually with a group of undergraduates at Oxford University to be a “virtual exchange” between Oxford and Rutgers University-Newark.