Current Course Offerings - Honors Program

HONORS COURSES

Honors Courses Fall 2018

HON 1101, Sec. 001: Literature of Social Change
CRN 20924, 4 cr.
Cross-listed with PJS 2102
IDS: AD01, AD02, AD04
Veritas: VCLI, VCSS
Dr. Thomas Morgan, TR 10:00-11:40 a.m.
Seats: 10 HON; 5 PJS
This course introduces students to a variety of perspectives and attitudes toward social change. Students read classic and contemporary works and hear from local activists who devote a significant amount of their time working for change. Students read several genres - fiction, autobiography, political philosophy, and propaganda. They are encouraged to adopt a critical and skeptical attitude toward what they read and hear.

HON 1111, Sec. 001: The Responsible Self: Great Ideas
CRN 20188, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: Fulfills DGN requirement
Dr. Thomas Morgan, TR 12:00-1:40 p.m.
Utopia, Dystopia and Perfection
This course will explore the idea of human perfectibility in utopian and dystopian literature. We will concentrate on the dystopian critics. Some of them have seen that human perfectibility is unfeasible or at least difficult in view of the "dark side of the human condition." Others have depicted, often brilliantly, the dangers of external, coercive approaches to human perfectibility. This course will help students approach great books (philosophy and fiction) and to think, speak and write critically about what they read and hear.

HON 1111, Sec. 002: The Responsible Self: Great Ideas
CRN 20189, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: Fulfills DGN requirement
Dr. Stephanie Johnson, TR 12:00-1:40 p.m.

Dwelling in Possibility: Women and the Creative Imagination
We will consider women's creativity this semester by introducing you to a range of women artists and examining their responses to the social, economic, and political contexts in which they worked. During the fall semester, our focus will be "Women Writers on Writing." We will read fiction and poetry by twentieth-century women writers paired with their essays about the writing process and the place of art in their lives and communities. Essays will include Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own and selections from the anthology Word: On Being a [Woman] Writer. During the spring semester, our focus will be "Visual Art: Confronting Gender Inequity." We will read essays and social critiques from the twentieth century that examine the visual arts as an instrument for social change as well as an expression of individual identity and experience. As we participate in the Dignitas Program's larger conversation about the value of human dignity for all, we will consider how gender can or should affect the formation of such a value.

HON 1111, Sec. 003: The Responsible Self: Great Ideas
CRN 20490, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: Fulfills DGN requirement
Dr. Randall Poole, TR 12:00-1:40 p.m.
Science, Faith and Human Dignity
Is there nothing but the natural universe in space and time, or is there more to reality than we can observe? The "nothing but" view is sometimes called naturalism or physicalism, in preference to the blunter "materialism" or "atheism." The "more" view is theistic, or at least broadly spiritual or religious. This course examines these two conceptions of reality and the debates about them in science, religion, and philosophy. Does science really support materialism as conclusively as Richard Dawkins and the other "new atheists" maintain? Or are there rational grounds for faith in a spiritual reality? Are science and faith compatible? In this course we will explore the "big questions"-questions about reality, human nature, and belief in God: What caused the universe to come into existence? Is its fine-tuning by design? Can life be reduced to chemistry? Is theism compatible with evolution? What is it to be human? Is the will free or determined by natural causes? What is morality? What is the mind and what does its emergence tell us about the nature of reality? Does personal experience (inner experience) count as knowledge? Is science the only way to truth? All these questions bear directly on the idea of human dignity, and throughout the course we will consider them in close relation to that idea.

HON 1111, Sec. 004: The Responsible Self: Great Ideas
CRN 21435, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: Fulfills DGN requirement
Dr. Audrey Devine Eller, TR 12:00-1:40 p.m.

HON 2243, Sec. 001: Women and Religion
CRN 20923, 4 cr.
Cross-listed with TRS 2243
IDS: AD01, AD10
Veritas: VCRS
Dr. Denise Starkey, TR 2:00-3:40 p.m.
Seats: 10 HON; 5 TRS
This course emphasizes the work of contemporary women thinkers in several disciplines who are exploring various dimensions of the question of women's presence, exclusion and contribution to religions of the world. Through historical and comparative study, the course provides both a critical and a constructive understanding of the contributions that women make to religions, as well as the influence of religions on the situation of women in the world. We will focus particularly on the origins of gender norms, women's lived experiences in indigenous religions, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam, as well as critical issues including violence against women sanctioned implicitly or explicitly by religion, the impact of patriarchy on men, and other contemporary issues. The course is organized as a seminar; therefore, discussion is key and depends upon the engagement and commitment of all learners to the course.

HON 3777, Sec. 001: Modern British Novels and the End of Empire
CRN 21377, 4 cr.
Cross-listed with ENG 3350
Area Distribution for Honors: AD04
Veritas: VILI
Dr. Tom Zelman, MWF 11:45-12:50 pm
Seats: 10 HON; 5 ENG
The poor British lion! For a period of almost 300 years, the Empire was the most powerful military and economic force on earth, and it has been said that "the sun never set on the British Empire." At one time, the British Empire accounted for 23% of the world's land area and 24% of its population. English trade, buoyed by the force of the Royal Navy, ruled world commerce, and England possessed colonies on every continent.
No more. Almost all of its former colonies are now independent nations; even Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland--England's partners in the United Kingdom-talk about severing ties.
This course will explore how novelists have approached and tried to understand the enormous changes that have taken place in England over the last century. In class, we will read and discuss a set of remarkable novels. Our authors will often look with nostalgia at the grandeur of the past and with apprehension, even horror, at what lies ahead. And they often face the present with humor and acceptance. The changing nature of what it means to be English, too, is a key theme as peoples from former colonies take up residence in London and other English cities. We will also spend some time exploring English humor and English popular fiction-and what it means. Winnie the Pooh, anyone?
Tentative reading list:
The Return of the Soldier-Rebecca West
The Remains of the Day-Kazuo Ishiguro
On Chesil Beach-Ian McEwan
The Mission Song-John LeCarré
White Teeth-Zadie Smith
A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian-Marina Lewycka
Major Pettigrew Takes a Stand-Helen Simonson

HON 4420, Sec. 001: Film and Literature
CRN 21380, 4 cr.
Cross-listed with CTA 4420
Area Distribution for Honors: AD08
Veritas: VIFA
Dr. Tammy Ostrander, MW 1:00-2:05 pm, T 4:00-7:00 pm
Seats 10 HON; 5 CTA
Film and Literature focuses on how storytelling evolves from a written text to a visual and auditory one. When adapting a written text to a film form, the storyteller loses some tools, but gains many others. What decisions must a filmmaker make to adapt a written text to film form? How true to the original written text must a filmmaker stay for "authentic" storytelling in a differing art form? The course covers both literature and film as an art form, not just a narrative structure. We will read a variety genres and forms - novels, short stories, graphic novels - and view the resulting film adaptations. Typical selections have included Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, "310 to Yuma," World War Z, "The Man in the Bomb Suit"/The Hurt Locker, "Eisenheim the Illusionist"/The Illusionist, and Chocolat. This course is appropriate for a general audience i.e. not just bookworms and film geeks.

HON 4777, Sec. 001: The Literary Imagination/The Visual Imagination
CRN 20925, 4 cr.
Cross-listed with ENG 4777
Area Distribution for Honors: AD04, AD08
Veritas: VILI, VIFA
Dr. Pat Hagen, MWF 2:15-3:20 pm
Seats: 8 HON; 7 ENG
One of the characteristic symptoms of the spiritual condition of our age," wrote Baudelaire (the poet) about Delacroix (the painter), is that "the arts aspire, if not to take one another's place, at least reciprocally to lend one another new powers." This reciprocity will be the heart of the class as we look at two "sister arts," literature and visual art, and think about the sibling rivalries and the family resemblances.
In the class we will examine pictures that have inspired literary artists, and then read the poems and prose they inspired. We'll follow the reverse process as we look at paintings about literature, beginning with such works as "The Lady of Shalott" and
"Isabella and the Pot of Basil," then looking at different visual interpretations of these texts. Our featured artist will be Vermeer (paintings, Girl with a
Pearl Earring and film version, Girl in Hyacinth
Blue, The Irish Game). The final segment of the class will take up the fusion of words and pictures: illustrated novels, comic books, graphic novels.

HON 3999: Independent Study
Days and times to be arranged, 0-4 cr.
Students complete an independent study on a specific topic under the supervision of a faculty member, based on a student's particular area of interest. Approval of the supervising faculty member and the Honors Program Director are required.

HON 4888: Thesis
Days and times to be arranged, 0-4 cr.
Individual research projects will result in a thesis. Students will work under the supervision of a faculty member. Approval of the supervising faculty member and the Honors Program Director are required.

HON 4999: Independent Study
Days and times to be arranged, 0-4 cr.
Students complete an independent study on a specific topic under the supervision of a faculty member, based on a student's particular area of interest. Approval of the supervising faculty member and the Honors Program Director are required.

Honors Courses Spring 2019
[Tentative]

HON 1112, Sec. 001: And Dignity for All: Great Ideas CRN 60156, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: Fulfills DGN requirement
Dr. Thomas Morgan, TR 12:00-1:40p.m.
This is a continuation of HON 1111, Sec 001 from fall semester.

HON 1112, Sec. 002: And Dignity for All: Great Ideas CRN 60157, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: Fulfills DGN requirement
Prof. Sarah Brokke Erickson, TR 12:00-1:40 p.m.
This is a continuation of HON 1111, Sec 002 from fall semester.

HON 1112, Sec. 003: And Dignity for All: Great Ideas CRN 60465, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: Fulfills DGN requirement
Dr. Randall Poole, TR 12:00-1:40 p.m.
This is a continuation of HON 1111, Sec 003 from fall semester.

HON 1112, Sec. 004: And Dignity for All: Great Ideas CRN 61303, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: Fulfills DGN requirement
Dr. Audrey Devine Eller, TR 12:00-1:40 p.m.
This is a continuation of HON 1111, Sec 004 from fall semester.

HON 1777, Sec. 001: Self and Society: Great Ideas, CRN 60792, 4 cr.
IDS: TBA
Veritas: TBA
Staff, W 4:00-7:00 pm
Seats: 15
This course serves as an introduction to the Honors Program and is open only to transfer students and delayed entry students. The course will help students to think, speak and write critically about what they read and hear. Students who have completed HON 1111 may not enroll. Program director's approval required.

HON 3350, Sec. 001: Psychology of Human Sexuality
CRN 61246, 2 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: AD02
Veritas: VISS
Dr. Debra Schroeder, TR 2:00-3:40 pm (3/19-5/9)
Seats: 15
This course involves reading and discussing psychology literature on selected, often controversial, topics in human sexuality. Subjects include evolutionary psychology and mate selection, love styles and classifications, unlovely feelings such as jealousy, correlates of sexual orientation, the church and sexuality, contraceptives, resolving unplanned pregnancies, impact of pornography on sexual aggression, atypical sexual behavior, realities and politics of child sexual abuse and sex therapy. The course will emphasize interactions between psychological factors and other influences-biological, social, cultural, religious-on sexual attitudes and behavior, and the study of sexuality as a scientific discipline.

HON 3777, Sec. 001: Faith and Film
CRN 60870, 4 cr.
Cross listed with TRS 3325
IDS: AD10
Veritas: VIRS
Dr. William Campbell, T 2:15-6:00 pm
Seats: 10 HON; 5 TRS
This course examines the ways that the Bible has been used by and represented in mainstream films. Since it is a biblical studies course, film theory will not be explicitly addressed. Nonetheless, the course will critically study a variety of cinematic films that focus on the Bible, exploring how the Bible, including its contents and themes, has found expression in movies.

HON 3777, Sec. 002: Evil
CRN 61247, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: AD09
Veritas: VIPH
Dr. Ashley Dressel, TR 10:00-11:40 am
Seats: 15
This course offers a philosophical and historical exploration of the concept of evil. We will consider various understandings of evil and wrongdoing that have arisen in philosophical and theological contexts. In the process, we will try to answer foundational questions like "what is evil?", "is evil a useful concept?", and "what sorts of things can be evil?" (People? Ideas? Corporations? Actions? Social conditions? Natural disasters? etc.). We will also address more targeted questions like "Does the person who buys a sweatshirt made in a sweatshop contribute to evil?", "Can inaction be evil?", etc.

HON 3777, Sec. 003, Behavioral Economics and Public Policy Analysis
CRN 61248, 4 cr.
Cross-listed with FIN 3777
Area Distribution for Honors: AD02
Veritas: VISS
Dr. Robert Hoffman, MWF 11:45-12:50 pm
Seats: 10 HON; 5 FIN
Examines the criticisms behavioral economists have made of the standard theory that individuals are fully rational decision makers. We will look at the findings behavioral economists have drawn from lab and field experiments that purport to show that individuals are systematically irrational. We will look at how the findings of behavioral economics have been used by policymakers to improve social policy in areas as diverse as education, health, energy use, and personal finance. Course texts: Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman; and Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth and Happiness by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein

HON 3777, Sec. 004: Literature of London
CRN 61250, 4 cr.
Cross-listed with ENG 3777
Area Distribution for Honors: AD04
Veritas: VILI
Dr. Stephanie Johnson, R 12:00-1:40 pm, May Study Abroad
Seats: 8 HON; 7 ENG
This course will combine a 2-credit spring class with an additional 2 credits earned while studying abroad in London (May 13-June 5, 2019). We will read three novels set in London from three literary periods and consider how city and narrative shape one another. Students must apply to the program in November and must register for this spring class as a prerequisite for a total of four credits.

HON 4650, Sec. 001: The Book in the Fifteenth Century
CRN 61251, 4 cr.
Area Distribution for Honors: AD04
Veritas: VILI
Dr. Bill Hodapp & Prof. Todd White, MW 3:30-5:10 p.m.
Seats 12
The course involves study of the history of the book in the west with a focus on the fifteenth century, which saw the transition from the manuscript to the printed book. An exercise in experimental archaeology, the course centers on material aspects of book production from calligraphy, illumination, and sewing to typesetting, printing, and binding. Students learn basic book production skills and collaborate to produce one manuscript book and a limited run printed book. Additionally, students individually investigate aspects of the history of book production and contribute reports to an anthology of studies that accompanies the manuscript and printed books. Course fee: $50.00

HON 4885, Sec. 001: The Holocaust in Comparative Perspective
CRN 61252, 4 cr.
Cross-listed with HIS 3305
Area Distribution for Honors: AD07
Veritas: VIHI
Dr. Randall Poole, T 4:00-7:00 p.m.
Seats 8 HON; 7 HIS
The Holocaust-the systematic destruction of millions of people, mainly Jews (to whom the term refers) but others as well, by the Nazis and their collaborators-stands out as the most notorious case of mass murder in human history. It epitomizes the human capacity for evil, which capacity, in the Holocaust's dark light, appears to be virtually unlimited. The word "genocide" was coined after the Second World War to describe that evil and to galvanize efforts (in human rights and international law) to contain it. This course explores the history of the Holocaust, tracing the rise of the Third Reich, its unleashing of the Second World War, and its implementation of the "Final Solution." Topics include the history of European anti-Semitism, Nazi ideology, the role of "ordinary Germans," and collaboration, resistance, and indifference outside Germany. We shall examine the Holocaust as a pan-European event, placing it in the broader perspective of the history of genocide and comparing it in particular to Stalinist mass murder in the Soviet Union. Finally, we shall consider philosophical and theological questions about the meaning of the Holocaust and other forms of radical evil. Readings will consist of works of scholarship and witness.

HON 3999: Independent Study
Days and times to be arranged, 0-4 cr.
Students complete an independent study on a specific topic under the supervision of a faculty member, based on a student's particular area of interest. Approval of the supervising faculty member and the Honors Program Director are required.

HON 4888: Thesis
Days and times to be arranged, 0-4 cr.
Individual research projects will result in a thesis. Students will work under the supervision of a faculty member. Approval of the supervising faculty member and the Honors Program Director are required.

HON 4999: Independent Study
Days and times to be arranged, 0-4 cr.
Students complete an independent study on a specific topic under the supervision of a faculty member, based on a student's particular area of interest. Approval of the supervising faculty member and the Honors Program Director are required.

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*Interdisciplinary Course Option - Honors Program
Some Honors courses fulfill the traditional General Education areas (history, literature, fine arts, social science, philosophy, religious studies, natural science, analytical reasoning). However, many courses will be identified as "Interdisciplinary" (IDS) courses, the content of which spans more than one academic discipline. Students and their advisors decide on an appropriate General Education area each IDS course will meet .

A minimum of 20 credits of regular General Education courses must be taken. Students must enroll in the Writing and Oral Communication components of the General Education Program. Students should review what General Education courses are required for their majors and minors before selecting Honors courses.

For more information, please contact the instructor or Dr. Stephanie Johnson.