Fall 2024

Streaming Wars
ANTH 258: Introduction to Media

Professor: Sucharita Kanjilal

This course explores the complex ways in which media animate our social, sensory and political worlds, and enable particular relationships between people, places, bodies and things. A key focus of this class will be to de-Westernize our understanding of media theory and practice, and critically evaluate what media “do” in time and space. We will tackle questions such as: Under what historical and social circumstances do people consume, produce and distribute media? How have people appropriated global, national and local media, especially in the Global South? How do power relations produced by race, gender, class, caste and capital shape encounters with media and media industries? Our class will engage with a range of media forms, from colonial cookbooks to movie theatres, community radio stations to the YouTube industry. We will read scholarly works from across the fields of media studies, feminist theory, anthropology and digital geography, putting key media theorists (such as Stuart Hall, Marshall McLuhan, Laura Marks, Lila Abu-Lughod, Lev Manovich and Charles Hirschkind) in conversation with contemporary media practitioners, artists and organizers. We will also prioritize working on media projects ourselves, in order to assess our own positions as producers as well as users and consumers of media.

ANTH 232: Lost Recipes

Professor: Sucharita Kanjilal

This course explores how food cultures and histories are shaped, contested and preserved by examining the recipe as a cultural artefact. It invites students to ask: What is a recipe, and how does it relate to questions of place and territory, memory and archive? In the contemporary food media and restaurant industries, the showcasing of ‘lost recipes’, as they relate to particular peoples and places, is an enchanting and lucrative practice that promises both cultural representation and culinary reclamation. This raises the question: How and why are some recipes thought to be ‘lost’, and by whom and in what form are they considered to be found? What happens when the preservation of culinary knowledges becomes unmoored from the material questions of dispossession and land loss? How does the growing global interest in food history relate to ongoing struggles for food sovereignty and food justice? Lost (and found) recipes, then, provide a unique entry point into questions of land and conquest, representational politics and cultural contestation, media and memorialization. Throughout this course, we will draw on scholarly and multimedia resources from across anthropology, food history, anti-caste and indigenous studies in order to take a capacious look at the recipe form and its related archives. By examining recipes embedded in oral histories and narrative-based records, colonial and community cookbooks, television programming and digital media, we will consider the kinds of conservation projects and imagined futures to which recipes contribute. And, by taking a global and feminist perspective, we will foreground indigenous and Dalit efforts towards culinary revitalization that confront the colonial-capitalist culinary archive.

ARCH 111 LS: Architecture as Media: How to Build a Ruin

Professor: Stephanie Lee

This studio course will introduce students to the language of architectural representation by framing the field of architecture as an ever changing process of social imagination and spatial deterioration. We will aim to understand design practice as an inherent mediation between changes in natural and cultural forces on buildings and environments. Engaging with ideas of decay, disrepair, and decrepitude, we will create fictional histories of dying industries situated in rural and suburban environments such as malls, farms, bank branches, and gas stations. Alongside readings about the legacies of capitalism and socio-economic crises, students will utilize techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, physical modeling, and compositional image-making to explore regenerative design processes and the emergence of new spatial possibilities for “ruins”. No prerequisites.

ARCH 211 BC: Architecture as Translation: At Scale

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Architectural models are a unique medium, a visual language that references the built world through scale and abstraction. As physical objects, they represent futures (proposals), histories (sites and contexts), and current conditions (material resources, shifting societal demands), often slipping between these temporalities. Learning how to make models is as important as learning to read what they tell us about the world. In this elective design studio, students will make an architectural model as a continuous practice, utilizing a spectrum of physical and digital fabrication methods such as woodworking, casting, digital modeling, and laser cutting. In making architectural models, we will question how societal models (such as domestic routines, building regulations, political cycles, and environmental systems) can be represented in physical form. We will ask how this form of architectural translation can complicate latent biases within the built environment, making visible otherwise invisible networks of power. ARCH111 prerequisite.

ARTH 223: Wild Visions: Picturing Nature in Early Modern Northern Europe

Professor: Susan Merriam

This class examines the extraordinary body of visual material representing the natural world created in Europe from 1500-1800. Still life paintings, study drawings, scientific illustrations, maps, and prints will serve as our focus. Questions we will address include: How did this body of visual material both reflect and produce beliefs about the natural world? What visual conventions did artists develop to depict nature, and how did these conventions inspire viewers to think about the natural world in new ways? How did colonial practices and discourses shape the visual record of nature in colonized landscapes? How were colonized peoples engaged in discourses about the natural world, and what role did they play in creating visual material? Can we say that this visual record still resonates with contemporary views of nature? Weekly reading assignments and short papers. AHVC distribution: 1400-1800.

FILM 225: 3D Animation

Professor: Ben Coonley

In this course, students are introduced to processes for creating moving image artworks using 3D animation software and its ancillary technologies. Topics include: the basics of 3D modeling and animation, 3D scanning, and creative use of other technologies that allow artists to combine real and virtual spaces. Weekly readings reflect on the psychological, cultural, and aesthetic impacts of the increasingly prevalent use of computer-generated imagery in contemporary media. Students are not assumed to have any previous experience with 3D animation. This production class fulfills a moderation requirement.

FILM 248: Framing the Election

Professor: Jacqueline Goss

If a canon of film, video and new media exists, it includes provocative media made in response to presidential elections. Fiction and documentary works like Haskell Wexler’s “Medium Cool,” TVTV’s “Four More Years,” Robert Altman’s “Tanner 88” and “Nashville,” Jason Simon’s “Spin,” DA Pennebaker’s “War Room,” and RTMark’s “voteauction” and “gwbush.com” websites successfully capture the complex narratives and legacies of the last four decades’ election years. Designed to coincide with the months immediately prior and following the US presidential election in November, “Framing the Election” provides a structure for the course participant to capture, process, frame and produce some aspect of presidential politics in terms of one’s own personal experience. Following the chronology of the election, we will use the first two months of the semester to gather source material and consider texts produced out of prior elections. The latter part of the semester is dedicated to the production of films, videos, sound works or internet-based projects made in response to the results of this election. Works may reflect any political persuasion and take any form including documentary, diary, personal essay, fiction and music. Prerequisite: a familiarity with and access to the tools one intends to use to produce work. This production course fulfills a moderation/major requirement.

FILM 312: Advanced Screenwriting

Professor: A. Sayeeda Moreno

An intensive screenwriting workshop designed specifically for someone who plans to make a film for moderation or senior project. We will work on multiple drafts with the goal to develop a concise and polished short screenplay in preparation for production. The course will focus on poetic strategies creating the blueprint for a narrative fiction film. The class will engage in writing assignments forming the bedrock for vigorous analysis as students workshop their scripts. This course will require extensive outside research, and a commitment to writing, rewriting, and analysis. Students must currently have a short script in progress that they intend to workshop during the semester. Prerequisite: Film 256 – Writing the Film or Film 229 – Character & Story, or the successful completion of a sophomore level production class. Non-majors can participate but must email the professor to highlight their screenwriting experience prior to registration for approval. ALL prospective students must email [email protected] one paragraph (no more than 200 words) with a short synopsis of the screenplay you want to workshop in class, and explain your interest in taking this course.

ART 236: Bard Farm Natural Dye Garden Practicum

Professor: Beka Goedde

This class will work together at the Bard Farm Community Garden to identify, cultivate, maintain, harvest and process colorants derived from plants for use in Studio Arts department facilities and for students’ own studio practice work. We will experiment together with extraction methods for natural dye for fabric and ink for paper and host a dye workshop open to fellow peers. Students will make a contribution to a group-chosen object of study (such as Madder, Goldenrod, Marigold, Chamomile, Yarrow, Turmeric, Indigo, Weld, Dyer’s Coreopsis) with botanical identification drawing, swatch book building, and lightfast testing. Students will take materials they gather and extract for their own practices, and present an art project for critique, informed by critical consideration of the value of impermanent color and material in temporary exhibitions. Expect tools and materials in this course to total $50, including paper, fabric, tincture containers, clippers and gloves. This course is designed for students who have taken at least one level I course previously in Studio Arts.

MUS 251: Improvisation:Social Science

Professor: Whitney Slaten

How does improvisation operate as social research? What does it mean to improvise? How do not only musicians, but also people in everyday life, and broader social structures, improvise with one another? How can critical improvisation studies shift our recognition of the phrase “jazz studies” from a noun to a declarative statement? This course provides an introduction to improvisation studies both within and beyond music. Students will read, present, and discuss scholarship about improvisation while considering examples that reveal the collective choices of individuals and groups who pursue various opportunities over time. Lectures and demonstrations will focus on how such examples outline “new” methodologies for qualitative social research. This course will culminate in a paper that explores how improvisational techniques in music can inform poststructural ethnographic research.

HR 321 A: Advocacy Video Clemency (Production)

Professor: Thomas Keenan and Brent Green

State governors (and the President) in the United States possess a strange remnant of royal sovereignty: the power of executive clemency, by which they can pardon offenses or commute the sentences of people convicted of crimes. They can do this to correct injustices, show mercy, or undo disproportionate punishments. Clemency doesn’t just happen – it requires a lot of work on the part of the incarcerated person and his or her advocates. But there are almost no rules governing what a clemency appeal looks like, so there is significant room for creativity in how applicants present their cases. In this practical seminar we will join forces with a team of students at CUNY Law School and the human rights organization WITNESS to prepare short video presentations that will accompany a number of New York State clemency applications this fall. Proficiency with video shooting, editing, and an independent work ethic are important. Meetings with clemency applicants in prison are a central element of the class. This is an opportunity to work collaboratively with law students and faculty, to do hands-on human rights research and advocacy, and to create work that has real-life impact. The class will alternate between video production and the study of clemency and pardons, emotion and human rights, first-person narrative, and persuasion by visual means. Please submit a short statement describing your abilities in shooting and editing video, and your interest in criminal justice, by May 6th. There are no prerequisites, but we seek a class that includes filmmakers, analysts, and activists. This is an Engaged Liberal Arts and Sciences (ELAS) class.

CMSC 141 A: Object-Oriented Programming

Professor: Theresa Law

This course introduces students to the methodologies of object-oriented design and programming, which are used throughout the Computer Science curriculum. Students will learn how to move from informal problem statement, through increasingly precise problem specifications, to design and implementation of a solution for problems drawn from areas such as graphics, animation, simulation. Good programming and documentation habits are emphasized.

WRIT 126: Poetics of Attention

Professor: Philip Pardi

Whether we train our gaze outward at the world around us or inward at worlds within, writers are called to pay attention in particular ways. In this class, we will consider attention as the first step of the creative process, and we will study and practice the seemingly simple act of attending to all that we encounter as we move through our days and (on a good day) make poems. While we will devote some time to revision, the focus of this workshop will be the fertile ground between immersive experience and early, generative, exploratory poetic composition. The longer Friday session will be spent writing together, taking short walks and excursions, reading poems, sharing our work, and discussing readings related to the science and practice of attention; the one-hour Wednesday session will be devoted to a sustained exploration of a single poem. Special Note: To facilitate our experiment with attentiveness, class meetings and most of the assignments will occur completely offline (i.e. no phone, no laptop, no smartwatch). If you have any concerns about this (or any) aspect of the course format, please contact me before registration.

SPAN 361: Contemporary Witnessing through Fiction and the Visual Arts

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

The changing notion of “witnessing” has become increasingly central to understanding forms of social and political violence. Widely theorized regarding the memorialization of mass suffering events occurred in the 20th century, this concept can also help readdress today’s sustained sentiment of socio-cultural crisis (ecological, migratory, gender- based violence, COVID19 pandemic…), as it is dealt with from literature, film, and the arts. In this transdisciplinary seminar, we will interrogate how the uses, targets, and moral responsibilities of testimony have shifted in a context where cultural manifestations often blur the boundaries between journalism and literature, judicial claims and forms of artistic performance, fiction and nonfiction writing. We will delve into intriguing questions raised by these new hybrid cultural practices, with a focus on literature and the visual arts originating from Spain in the 21st century. What does the current use of categories such as “documentary” and “testimonial” mean in self-proclaimed works of fiction? Can fiction bear witness by proxy? Can judicial claims become art? How do audiences receive these hybrid works? How can these fictional testimonies help us reassess our present and reshape our memory of the future? We will explore selected writings by Jorge Semprún, Lara Moreno, Javier Cercas, Sara Torres, Luis López Carrasco, and Layla Martínez; films by Víctor Erice and Carla Simón; and artwork by Paula Bonet and Santiago Talavera. This course will include a series of conversations with contemporary writers from Spain. Conducted in Spanish.

Sound Walk
ANTH 223: Technologies of Voice and Listening

Professor: Laura Kunreuther

This course examines modern technologies of voice (eg. radio, gramophone, voice recorders) and asks how such technologies have shaped specific modes of listening, and vice versa. Modern ideologies of voice – deployed in politics, social movements and humanitarian organizations, as well as many musical and cultural productions – tend to naturalize the relationship between voice and individuality, agency, and empowerment. The voice, it is assumed, provides unmediated access to the self and a direct way of making one’s desires and ideas known in public. But the immediacy of the voice often depends upon specific technologies (eg. sound recording, amplification, broadcasting) and human language labor (eg. interpreters/translators, stenographers, spirit animators) through which particular voices are represented, cited, and made audible. Drawing inspiration from critical indigenous studies, sound and media studies, we will examine human and mechanical technologies of voice that have been central to the ethnographic recording and circulation of indigenous folktales, language, and songs in early anthropology. We will also explore the way more contemporary indigenous forms of listening have become part of broadcast culture and digital archives that offer models for novel approaches to ethnographic listening. Students will be required to focus on a specific technology of voice or listening practice from within or beyond the course syllabus, and will produce both a paper and a listening project that will be showcased at the EH share event and possibly on the EH and/or Rethinking Place website for broader public consumption. Readings will include selections from: Elizabeth Povinelli and Karrabing Collective (indigenous media collective based in New Zealand); Brian Hochman (Savage Preservation: The Ethnographic Origins of Modern Media Technology); Dylan Robinson (Hungry Listening: Resonant Theory for Indigenous Sound Studies); Audra Simpson (On Ethnographic Refusal: Indigeneity, ‘Voice’, and Colonial Citizenship); Daniel Fisher (The Voice and its Doubles: Media and Music in Northern Australia).

ARCH 111 MC: Architecture as Media: Spatial Subjects

Professor: Michael Cohen

This studio-based course introduces students to architectural tools of communication while presenting architecture as a field that is expansive—a field that engages not only with technical knowledge, but also with the making of public imaginaries, personal environments, cultural spatial aesthetics, and even the contested ground of the political, economic and social. The course is simultaneously an introduction to the techniques of representation that define the discipline of architecture and an opportunity to explore and question how architecture mediates the world. Students will learn and practice techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, mapping, 3D modeling and compositional image-making. While the focus will be on an array of forms of architectural drawing, these techniques will be carefully positioned against a survey of paradigmatic moments and themes in the history of architecture that will help situate the practice today. Throughout the term, our design work will be supplemented by readings and periodic research work, and we will situate this against regular lectures that will introduce you to the broader culture of architecture. The course will provide a foundation of concepts and skills necessary to make architecture legible and to convey a spatial argument through design. No prerequisites.

ARCH 211 MC: Architecture as Translation: Drawing to Demand

Professor: Michael Cohen

As abstractions, architectural drawings must paradoxically detach themselves from the material world in order to represent it. However, as representations of the built environment, drawings are excellent tools to document corporeal conditions and social relations. Drawings are distanced yet rooted in reality, making them an effective medium to critique or make demands about the structures that constitute everyday life. In this elective design studio, students will focus on housing and domestic space to develop a capacity of architectural drawing, digitally and by hand, that both questions the conventional socio-spatial disposition of architecture, and that can propose new ways of being. The intention is not to learn methods of architectural representation as a means of mastery, but to mobilize drawing as a mode of speculation and intervention that holds weight on the plane of the real; to create drawings that demand.

ARCH 214: Post-Eden: Conflicts, Coloniality and Plants

Professor: Stephanie Lee

How might botanical worlds carry notions of extractive economies, settler colonialism and legacies of racial capitalism? This elective design studio seminar will focus on the interconnectedness of property, plants and bodies from the past to present. While understanding the role of architecture and landscape in agri-capitalism, we will expose matters of resiliency, reform and recovery through case studies such as the Yedikule Gardens, Victory gardens, the Millennium Seed Bank, Crystal Palace, Orangeries, biopiracy and others. Focusing on the role of “floor plans” as an architectural device, we will situate these complex entanglements by collaborating on a toolkit of care for humans, land and everything in between. For the second half of the studio, we will work with the Bard Horticulture and Arboretum Department to design a land-based intervention for the campus. Students will have weekly assignments, and learn techniques of digital drafting, model making, compositional image-making through Adobe Creative Programs and Rhino 3D. No prerequisites.

ARTH 318: Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives

Professor: Anne Chen

What silences do archaeological archives unintentionally preserve? In what ways do power and privilege influence the creation and shape of archaeological archives, and dictate who has access to them? How might new technologies help us begin to rectify inequities of access? Once called by its excavators the “Pompeii of the East,” the ancient archaeological site of Dura-Europos (Syria) preserves evidence of what everyday life was like in an ancient Roman city. The site is home to the earliest Christian church building yet found, the most elaborately decorated ancient synagogue known to date, and testifies to the ways in which ancient religions and cultures intermingled and inspired one another. Yet since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011, the site has been irreparably compromised for future archaeological exploration. More than ever, our knowledge and understanding of the site’s ancient phases will depend almost entirely upon archival information collected in the course of archaeological excavations that took place 100 years ago when Syria was under French colonial occupation. In this hands-on practicum course focused on the case-study of this fascinating archaeological site, students will not only learn what we know of Dura-Europos as it was in antiquity, but will also think critically about issues central to the use and development of archival resources more generally. Coursework will center around firsthand engagement with data, artifacts, and archival materials from the site, and will allow students the opportunity to develop guided research projects that ultimately contribute toward the goal of improving the site’s accessibility and intelligibility to users worldwide. The methods and critical perspectives explored in this class will be particularly relevant to students interested in exploring careers in GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museum) fields. AHVC distribution: Ancient.

FILM 256: Writing the Film

Professor: A. Sayeeda Moreno

An introductory writing course that looks at creative approaches to writing short films and dialogue scenes. Starting with personal histories, lineage, and identities, students learn the tools to write invigorating, character-driven short screenplays. Building characters through transcription and investigation to enhance character development and story arc ultimately creating a visual language, students develop and workshop a short screenplay (maximum 10-15 pages). This course will require extensive outside research and you are responsible for committing to a writing and rewriting process. Registration open to Sophomores and above.

FILM 335: Video Installation

Professor: Ben Coonley

This production course explores the challenges and possibilities of video installation: an evolving contemporary art form that extends video beyond conventional exhibition spaces such as theaters into sculptural, site-specific, physically immersive, and multiple channel exhibition contexts. Presentations, screenings, and readings augment critical thinking about temporal and spatial relationships, narrative structure, viewer perception and the challenges of presenting time-based media artwork in a gallery or museum setting. Workshops hone technical skills and introduce methods for the creative use of video projectors, video monitors, sound equipment, surveillance cameras, media players, multi-channel synchronizers, digital software, and lightweight sculptural elements. Students develop research interests and apply their unique skill sets to short turnaround exercises and a larger self-directed final project. This is an advanced course. Students are expected to have some experience with videocamera operation and editing. This course fulfills a moderation/major requirement.

AFR 311: Parables of Abolition

Professor: Kwame Holmes

Over the course of 5 novels: Kindred, Dawn, Adulthood Rites, Parable of the Sower and Parable of the Talents, Octavia Butler laid out the blueprint for a project of Abolition; an ongoing unmaking and remaking of our world. We’ll read these novels in order to: 1. Locate Butler’s prophetic vision, i.e. how her work predicts the crises of climate change, warfare, and the intensification of suffering at the hands of capitalist-driven dispossession and deprivation. 2. Discern Butler’s vision for saving society, and ourselves from the future she, and so many of us now, see before us. With Butler’s philosophy in mind, students will design a guide for building communities that can survive the coming transition, and prevent humanity from reproducing the very cycles of division and violence that made it possible for Butler to so accurately predict the world as it is.

MUS 380: Algorithmic Composition and Improvisation

Professor: Matthew Sargent

In this seminar, our computers will act as composers, improvisers, orchestrators, and accompanists. Students will explore a variety of conceptual strategies for the real-time computer generation of musical events, while learning fundamentals of object-oriented programming. Students will engage in discussion of artificial intelligence and musical creativity, through the investigation of pioneering algorithmic works from the 20/21st century, including the music of Lejaren Hiller, Iannis Xenakis, George Lewis, David Cope, Laurie Spiegel, Tristan Perich, and Holly Herndon. This course will conclude with a final project and class performance. Course content will be directly relevant to composers, improvisers, film and electronic arts majors, and game designers, among others. Pre-requisites: Introduction to Electronic Music, a 200-level Computer Science course, or permission of the professor. It is encouraged that students enroll concurrently in Introduction to Max/Msp.

HR 321 B: Advocacy Video Clemency (Reading)

Professor: Brent Green and Thomas Keenan

State governors (and the President) in the United States possess a strange remnant of royal sovereignty: the power of executive clemency, by which they can pardon offenses or commute the sentences of people convicted of crimes. They can do this to correct injustices, show mercy, or undo disproportionate punishments. Clemency doesn’t just happen – it requires a lot of work on the part of the incarcerated person and his or her advocates. But there are almost no rules governing what a clemency appeal looks like, so there is significant room for creativity in how applicants present their cases. In this practical seminar we will join forces with a team of students at CUNY Law School and the human rights organization WITNESS to prepare short video presentations that will accompany a number of New York State clemency applications this fall. Proficiency with video shooting, editing, and an independent work ethic are important. Meetings with clemency applicants in prison are a central element of the class. This is an opportunity to work collaboratively with law students and faculty, to do hands-on human rights research and advocacy, and to create work that has real-life impact. The class will alternate between video production and the study of clemency and pardons, emotion and human rights, first-person narrative, and persuasion by visual means. Please submit a short statement describing your abilities in shooting and editing video, and your interest in criminal justice, by May 6th. There are no prerequisites, but we seek a class that includes filmmakers, analysts, and activists. This is an Engaged Liberal Arts and Sciences (ELAS) class.

CMSC 141 B: Object-Oriented Programming

Professor: Kerri-Ann Norton and Sven Anderson

This course introduces students to the methodologies of object-oriented design and programming, which are used throughout the Computer Science curriculum. Students will learn how to move from informal problem statement, through increasingly precise problem specifications, to design and implementation of a solution for problems drawn from areas such as graphics, animation, simulation. Good programming and documentation habits are emphasized.

WRIT 215: Risk and the Art of Poetry

Professor: Dawn Lundy Martin

We are alive and writing during one of the most fragile times in most of our lifetimes—a time of plague and war, a time of elevated mass violence and white supremacist organizing, a time when most of us seek safety, not risk. Poetry, however, is a way toward thinking through what it means to be human in any context, whether we can recognize the world as ours or not. It has the capacity to shift our thinking—about sentence structures, about habitual patterns of thought, about what might be possible in the future. Poetry helps us recalibrate the already known so that we may re-see what appears ordinary or immutable. In this course, you’ll generate new poems that push the boundaries of what you already know about what a poem might be. In creative practice, we’ll investigate this notion of risk. Readings may include work by Carl Phillips, Claudia Rankine, Myung Mi Kim, Fahima Ife, Cecilia Vicuña, Saidiya Hartman, Jane Wong, JJJJJerome Ellis, Justin Phillip Reed, among others.

CC 123: Cosmologies of Home/Habitat

Professor: Julia Rosenbaum, Yuka Suzuki and Krista Caballero

A bright blue ring of baubles frames the entrance. An elaborate arch welcomes potential visitors. While we tend to associate human architects with the structures we call home, nonhuman animals such as Bowerbirds are also creative designers, carefully constructing environments like the one described above. What is at stake in distinguishing between the spaces that Bowerbirds and humans create and inhabit? Inspired by feminist and Indigenous frameworks, this course introduces students to the concept of home on multiple scales to explore how human and nonhuman animals imagine and make a sense of place. How, for example, do we define home and habitat? Whose homes and habitats do we interact with and move through? How do memory and storytelling shape our understandings of such places? How have ideas and practices of home and habitat changed and what will they look like in the future? This course addresses such questions through four specific themes: place-making and belonging; mobility and rootedness; aesthetics and animals; and site/non-site. Each section includes human and nonhuman experiences and is anchored with two to three key texts, a set of case studies, and interdisciplinary practices of art making.

ES/EUS 206: Landscape Studies: The Hudson Valley

Professor: Jana Mader

For centuries, the land on which the Bard College campus is located has been inhabited and utilized by various societies and cultures. In this course, we will critically examine the existing landscape to unfold the “story” of the land we currently call our home. Specific areas of study will include the history of Native Americans in the area, colonialism and slavery in the region; the Hudson Valley in art and literature and its role in the construction of an American identity in the 19th century; native plants and trees, agriculture, the river and environmental activism in the area; green spaces and the buildings on campus. We will explore the past, present, and possible future of the Hudson Valley through a range of primary and secondary sources, including Anne Whiston Spirn’s “The Language of Landscape,” Patrick Wolfe’s “Settler Colonialism and the Elimination of the Native,” Myra Armstead’s “From Property to Proprietor: The Exceptional Journey of Alexander Gilson,” Susan Fox Rogers’ “My Reach,” Washington Irving’s “Rip Van Winkle” and “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” Julia Rosenbaum’s “Visions of Belonging: New England Art and the Making of American Identity,” Lucy Sante’s “19 Reservoirs. On Their Creation and the Promise of Water for New York City,” and John Stilgoe’s “The River.” While some meetings will take place in the classroom, we will also spend time outside the classroom at places like Old Growth Forest, Montgomery Place, Blithewood, Bard Farm, Bard Field Station, Tivoli Bays, and the Hessel Museum to close-read the language of landscape and to explore how our current home and what we see in it has changed over time. Students choose a semester-long research project based on their interests, culminating in an exhibition. This course includes a voluntary trip to Olana in Hudson, NY.

Spring 2024

ARTS 240: Technology, Humanity & the Future

Professor: Krista Caballero

In both theory and practice, this course is designed to explore the intersections of technology, justice, and creative practice. One of our central lines of inquiry will be: How might technology be utilized in ethical and just ways to (re)imagine our human cultural practices and resulting ecological impact? In approaching this question, we will consider ways that artists and community activists are pushing boundaries to both critically and creatively address the future of technology and issues relating to identity and privacy, data sovereignty and governance, e-waste and rare earth mining, deepfakes and AI. Key theoretical texts from scholars such as Felix Guattari, Safiya Umoja Noble, Hito Steyerl, Gregory Cajete, Shannon Mattern, Lev Manovich, and Lisa Nakamura will ground our exploration alongside a series of guest lectures by a diverse group of artists, scholars and activists across the OSUN network. Through readings and discussions, this course will explore technology across historical periods and how past forms help shape our current moment. Students will also work intensively to develop creative projects that blur boundaries between physical and digital media, integrate field-based research, and experiment with interdisciplinary practices of making. This is an OSUN Online Class, taught online and open to Bard students and students from OSUN partner institutions.

ARTS 314: Beyond Bollywood: Mapping South Asian Cinema

Professor: Fahmidul Haq

South Asian Cinema is nearly synonymous with Indian Cinema to the international audience, though other South Asian countries such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal have developed strong film cultures too. The objective of the course is mapping the cine profile of the South Asian countries and examining Bollywood’s hegemonic presence in the region. This seminar course will study some cases across a range of South Asian Cinema cultures by exploring their common as well as different cultural backgrounds, historiography, and sociopolitical realities. Topics will include both historical and contemporary cinematic practices in South Asian countries such as the Partition of India in South Asian Cinema, cinematic representation of the Liberation War of Bangladesh, Bollywood’s cultural influence in other South Asian countries, portrayal of Kashmir in Indian cinema, diasporic Indian cinema and ‘other Bollywood’ cinema. Films by directors such as Raj Kapoor, Satyajit Ray, Ritwik Ghatak and Anurag Kashyap from India, Zahir Raihan, Alamgir Kabir and Tareque Masud from Bangladesh, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and Shoaib Mansoor from Pakistan, and Lester James Peries from Sri Lanka will be studied closely. 

South Asian Cinema is nearly synonymous with Indian Cinema to the international audience, though other South Asian countries such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal have developed strong film cultures too. The objective of the course is mapping the cine profile of the South Asian countries and examining Bollywood’s hegemonic presence in the region. This seminar course will study some cases across a range of South Asian Cinema cultures by exploring their common as well as different cultural backgrounds, historiography, and sociopolitical realities. Topics will include both historical and contemporary cinematic practices in South Asian countries such as the Partition of India in South Asian Cinema, cinematic representation of the Liberation War of Bangladesh, Bollywood’s cultural influence in other South Asian countries, portrayal of Kashmir in Indian cinema, diasporic Indian cinema and ‘other Bollywood’ cinema. Films by directors such as Raj Kapoor, Satyajit Ray, Ritwik Ghatak and Anurag Kashyap from India, Zahir Raihan, Alamgir Kabir and Tareque Masud from Bangladesh, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and Shoaib Mansoor from Pakistan, and Lester James Peries from Sri Lanka will be studied closely.

ARCH 111 MC: Architecture as Media: Spatial Subjects

Professor: Michael Cohen

This studio-based course introduces students to architectural tools of communication while presenting architecture as a field that is expansive—a field that engages not only with technical knowledge, but also with the making of public imaginaries, personal environments, cultural spatial aesthetics, and even the contested ground of the political, economic and social. The course is simultaneously an introduction to the techniques of representation that define the discipline of architecture and an opportunity to explore and question how architecture mediates the world. Students will learn and practice techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, mapping, 3D modeling and compositional image-making. While the focus will be on an array of forms of architectural drawing, these techniques will be carefully positioned against a survey of paradigmatic moments and themes in the history of architecture that will help situate the practice today. Throughout the term, our design work will be supplemented by readings and periodic research work, and we will situate this against regular lectures that will introduce you to the broader culture of architecture. The course will provide a foundation of concepts and skills necessary to make architecture legible and to convey a spatial argument through design. No prerequisites.

ARCH 322: Future Tense - The Architectural Exhibition

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Architectural exhibitions are places that take stock of a field in constant movement; a site in which global shifts and debates intersect, bringing into view consequences and openings for a future under construction. In this course we will mine the medium of the architectural exhibition to ask: How can an archive be used to revise an established canon? How can the curation of an exhibition unsettle what has become commonplace? How do we situate present practice against an uncertain future? We will discuss the ways in which architecture is produced and reproduced within the space of an exhibition, as well as how the exhibition, as a contested space, can create openings for renewed understandings of culture and politics beyond architecture. This course will culminate in a public exhibition featuring the architectural model as a central medium to re-present contemporary and historical ideas against one another. By critically surveying contemporary practice, students will employ a range of representational techniques to enunciate questions for possible shared futures that escape the gravity of dominant cultural imaginaries. Moderation is a prerequisite.

ARCH 211 BC: Architecture as Translation: At Scale

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Architectural models are a unique medium, a visual language that references the built world through scale and abstraction. As physical objects, they represent futures (proposals), histories (sites and contexts), and current conditions (material resources, shifting societal demands), often slipping between these temporalities. Learning how to make models is as important as learning to read what they tell us about the world. In this elective design studio, students will make an architectural model as a continuous practice, utilizing a spectrum of physical and digital fabrication methods such as woodworking, casting, digital modeling, and laser cutting. In making architectural models, we will question how societal models (such as domestic routines, building regulations, political cycles, and environmental systems) can be represented in physical form. We will ask how this form of architectural translation can complicate latent biases within the built environment, making visible otherwise invisible networks of power. No prerequisites.

BIO 102: Food Microbiology

Professor: Gabriel Perron

In this course designed for non-majors, we will study the microorganisms that inhabit, create, or contaminate food. The first half of the course will introduce students to topics in food safety such as food spoilage, food borne infections, and antibiotic resistance. In the second half of the course, students will learn how to harness the capabilities of the many microbes present in our environment to turn rotting vegetables or spoiling milk into delicious food. Students will also learn how next-generation technologies are revealing the important ecological dynamics shaping microbial communities in transforming food with possible beneficial effects on human health. Throughout the course, students will learn how to design, conduct, and analyze simple experiments while working with microbiology techniques, including DNA sequencing. No prerequisite.

CMSC 141: Object-Oriented Programming

Professor: Rose Sloan (A) & Bob McGrail (B)

This course introduces students to the methodologies of object-oriented design and programming, which are used throughout the Computer Science curriculum. Students will learn how to move from informal problem statement, through increasingly precise problem specifications, to design and implementation of a solution for problems drawn from areas such as graphics, animation, simulation. Good programming and documentation habits are emphasized.

HR 318: Documentary Arts: Practices of Fact and Fiction, History and Politics

Professor: Argyro Nicolaou

The need to document contemporary and historical experiences has always been at the heart of the arts, be it literature, music, painting and sculpture, filmmaking or live arts/performance. Yet an equally long tradition of thought exists that insists on separating fact from fiction; stories from history; and aesthetics from politics, relegating any serious pursuit of truth to so-called documentary practices alone. But what counts as documentary? Can’t the artful also document? And if so, what sorts of relationships of representation and critical interpretation emerge from the merging of artistic practices with the facts and consequences of historical and/or contemporary sociopolitical events? This seminar will draw from a diverse tradition of historical fiction on the page and screen, political cinema, research-based art and critical theory to explore the different ways in which the arts can document reality and how ‘real-life’ documents are turned into art. (D&J justification: As a course dealing with the comparative study of how the arts can document reality, this course will emphasize the ways in which social differences of various types manifest in and are addressed by artistic practices in their documentation of reality.)

LIT 285: Light Writing: Literature and Photography in the French Tradition

Professor: Gabriella Lindsay

What happens when photographs and texts are brought together? In the French-speaking world, there is a particularly strong tradition of writers and artists using photographic images and text to create new forms of meaning, unsurprising perhaps, given French claims on the invention of a photographic process in the early 19th century. This seminar will consider the relationship between literature and photography by engaging closely with photo-textual and theoretical works translated from French, focusing on the themes of autobiography, historical memory and postcoloniality. We will examine questions of documentation, experimentation, selfhood, violence, colonialism, memory and forgetting, perception, ethics, and the nature of representation. From Sophie Calle and Hervé Guibert’s photobiographical blurring of fiction and reality to Malek Alloula’s “album” of Algerian colonial postcards and Patrick Chamoiseau and Rodolphe Hammadi’s photo-poetic history of Guianan work-camps, we will think about how words and photographic images transform one another to create new understandings of the self, individual and collective memory, loss and history. Students will also have the opportunity to make photo-texts of their own. Authors to be studied may include Roland Barthes, Sophie Calle, Marie NDiaye, Hervé Guibert, Hélène Cixous, Malek Alloula, Patrick Modiano, Patrick Chamoiseau, Rodolphe Hammadi, Marc Garanger, Leïla Sebbar, Chris Marker. This course is conducted in English and does not assume any prior knowledge of French, photography, or literature in French. This course fulfills the World Literature requirement. By engaging with the representation of colonial violence and colonial memory, the class also counts for the Difference and Justice distributional area.

MUS 262: Topics in Music Software: Introduction to MAX/MSP

Professor: Matthew Sargent

This course will introduce students to MAX/MSP, an object-oriented programming environment for real-time audio processing, digital synthesis, algorithmic composition, data sonification, and more. Students will learn fundamental concepts of digital audio and computer programming while engaging in creative projects and in-class performances. The class will include examples of Max patches found in major works of 20/21st century electroacoustic music and sound art repertoire. The course will also explore connectivity between Max and other software applications, including Max4Live. The course will conclude with a final project. Introduction to Electronic Music, or a 100-level course in Computer Science, is recommended as a prerequisite.

WRIT 345: Imagining Nonhuman Consciousness

Professor: Benjamin Hale

Philosopher Thomas Nagel asked, “What is it like to be a bat?” Ultimately, he determined the question unanswerable: A bat’s experience of the world is so alien to our own that it is beyond the human understanding of subjective experience. That’s arguable. But it is true at least that a bat’s experience—or that of any other nonhuman consciousness—is not inaccessible to human imagination. In this course we will read and discuss a wide variety of texts, approaching the subject of nonhuman consciousness through literature, philosophy, and science. We will read works that attempt to understand the experiences of apes, panthers, rats, ticks, elephants, octopuses, lobsters, cows, bats, monsters, puppets, computers, and eventually, zombies. Course reading may include Descartes, Kafka, Rilke, Jakob von Uexküll, Patricia Highsmith, John Gardner, J.A. Baker, Eduardo Kohn, David Foster Wallace, Zora Neale Hurston, Temple Grandin, Jane Goodall, Thomas Nagel, John Searle, Susan Daitch, Giorgio Agamben, Bennett Sims, and E. O. Wilson, among others, in addition to a viewing of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later, and possibly other films. There will be several long writing assignments over the course of the semester, and a workshop component. Students interested in this workshop must email [email protected]

ARTS 208: Understanding Social Media

Professor: Fahmidul Haq

Doing social media projects practically and analyzing their role critically are two main objectives of the course. This course will raise some critical question that evolve around social media which will include – surveillance and privacy, labor, big data, misinformation, cyborg and cyberfeminism. Topics will include the socio-historical perspectives regarding technology and society, the nature and characteristics of different social media such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, snapchat and more, big data capitalism and imperialism, civic engagement through digital platforms, mainstream media’s compelling realities to be more ‘social’, misinformation, racism and right-wing authoritarianism in social media, the role of social media influencers, branding and social media marketing and an exploration for a true social media. The course will draw from a broad range of social theory including communication and cultural theories, political economy and media anthropology to critically evaluate the impact of social media on human relationships, activism, branding, politics, news production and dissemination and identity formation. Theoretical notions such as hyperreality by Jean Baudrillard, network society by Manuel Castells and digital labor by Christian Fuchs will be discussed in the class. As ‘prosumers’, students will create social media projects and analyze some trendy cases evident in different platforms.

ARTS 310: The Belly is a Garden

Professor: Vivien Sansour

Inspired by the Palestinian saying El Batin Bustan (The Belly is a Garden) this course explores bio-cultural diversity and the question of being of the earth and part of its diverse terrains. Fundamental questions we will explore are: How can biodiversity and human diversity be paths to wellbeing? How can humans understand themselves as nature’s co-creators? This course is designed as an experiential journey using multiple forms, including original texts, discussion, guided fieldwork directed by faculty, nature walks, in class writing exercises, and group workshops. Students will work in consultation with the professor on individual self-directed projects throughout the semester. These projects will be presented at the end of semester to the combined class of AQB and Annandale. The projects will all require some form of field research such as conducting interviews, gathering site related natural material for possible installations, photography, oral histories, film, among others including performance art. Students will engage in hands-on, outdoor activities such as cooking, planting, and possibly seed or crop harvesting with discussions of key texts grounding our interdisciplinary investigation. In an attempt to deconstruct colonial forms of being we will be exploring ourselves as living beings navigating a global landscape that is both in crisis and in constant transformation. How do we relate to the soil beneath our feet? How are we informed by other living beings in our surroundings? Between the question of settler and Indigenous how can we better understand ourselves, and our place in the world, while engaging in collaborative designs of new possible futures? As an OSUN Network Course, students will have the opportunity to participate in shared online events and conversations with students at Al-Quds Bard College, Palestine but the majority of the semester will be in-person on Bard’s Annandale Campus.

ARCH 111: Architecture as Media: Re-Tooling the Trade

Professor: Jesse McCormick

In this introductory course, the ‘tools of the trade’ (plans, sections, digital drafting, perspectives, collages, physical and digital modeling and montage) will be entry points into deciphering the politics, practices and protocols that govern our built environment. Seeking to proactively challenge certain assumptions of the field—that architecture is a practice based on production (of buildings, of assets, of products, of space, of culture, of drawings of images, of ideas…)—the aim of the course will be to reposition architecture as a method of seeing and reading space; a production of legibility. Through a series of explorations, students will learn the tools, techniques and media of spatial-visual communication used in the field of architecture while attempting to make new claims about its production and productivity, opening up new roles for architects in evolving social paradigms. Students will be asked to interrogate both lived space, representations of it, and existing precedents, as well as to engage with texts that will inform an evolving and consistent discussion throughout. No prerequisites.

ARCH 221: Planetary Studio: Radical Ruralism

Professor: Stephanie Lee

How can we approach architecture beyond form-based explorations, but as a mode to re-imagine current sociopolitical, institutional, and territorial entanglements? This design studio seminar explores architecture as a network of situated relationships between built and non-built environments. Focusing on the colonial construction of rural imaginaries, students will pull apart and realign existing agricultural food systems at various scales. We will question the destructive and extractive processes of industrial agriculture, globalization and late capitalism by suggesting a para-fictional alternative: a land practice of resistance, regeneration, and mutual care based on the network of radical farms in the Hudson Valley. For the final project, students will produce a series of speculative projection drawings that read as one collective canvas with multiple scales, perspectives, and realities.

ARCH 331: Architecture as Research: More-than-Human Architecture

Professor: Ivan Lopez Munuera

In the contemporary world, the concept of the human being has transcended traditional boundaries. In the face of the climate crisis, and with the challenges made by non-normative knowledge structures, our bodies are increasingly understood as intricate ecosystems, composed of bacteria, fungi, viruses, microplastics, prosthetics, chemical regimes, and myriad other components. However, prevailing historical and theoretical narratives in architecture have remained predominantly anthropocentric, placing autonomous and zipped-up human beings at the core of their discourse. This course offers an exploration of the complex interplay between non-human and human designs within contemporary global contexts, delving into historical examples and new imaginations. Emphasis is placed on the incorporation of what is traditionally termed “nature” into design processes, as well as the roles that the evolution of animal, vegetal, and mineral have played in design. Additionally, we will investigate non-human forms of intelligence and healing, ceremonial and repair practices in architecture, challenging the notion that design must solely serve human needs. We will work collectively in the production of an exhibition on Non-Human Architecture, and a publication that will accompany this show.

ARTH 318: Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives

Professor:  Anne Chen

What silences do archaeological archives unintentionally preserve? In what ways do power and privilege influence the creation and shape of archaeological archives, and dictate who has access to them? How might new technologies help us begin to rectify inequities of access? Once called by its excavators the “Pompeii of the East,” the ancient archaeological site of Dura-Europos (Syria) preserves evidence of what everyday life was like in an ancient Roman city. The site is home to the earliest Christian church building yet found, the most elaborately decorated ancient synagogue known to date, and testifies to the ways in which ancient religions and cultures intermingled and inspired one another. Yet since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011, the site has been irreparably compromised for future archaeological exploration. More than ever, our knowledge and understanding of the site’s ancient phases will depend almost entirely upon archival information collected in the course of archaeological excavations that took place 100 years ago when Syria was under French colonial occupation. In this hands-on practicum course focused on the case-study of this fascinating archaeological site, students will not only learn what we know of Dura-Europos as it was in antiquity, but will also think critically about issues central to the use and development of archival resources more generally. Coursework will center around firsthand engagement with data, artifacts, and archival materials from the site, and will allow students the opportunity to develop guided research projects that ultimately contribute toward the goal of improving the site’s accessibility and intelligibility to users worldwide. The methods and critical perspectives explored in this class will be particularly relevant to students interested in exploring careers in GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museum) fields. This course is offered by default as a 2-credit class that meets approximately eight times during the semester (precise meeting schedule to be set at the beginning of the semester); however, students interested in earning a full 4-credits have the option of adding a 2-credit tutorial (must be arranged in consultation with the professor in the beginning of the semester). AHVC distribution: Ancient.

HIST 382: Re-Thinking Silicon Valley

Professor: Jeannete Estruth

This seminar uses the space of the Silicon Valley to explore larger threads and themes in post-war economic, urban, political, and intellectual United States history.

FILM 203: Digital Animation

Professor: Jacqueline Goss

In this course we will make video and web-based projects using digital animation and compositing programs (primarily Adobe Animate and After Effects). The course is designed to help students develop a facility with these tools and to find personal animating styles that surpass the tools at hand. We will work to reveal techniques and aesthetics associated with digital animation that challenge conventions of storytelling, editing, figure/ground relationship, and portrayal of the human form. To this end, we will refer to diverse examples of animating and collage from film, music, writing, photography, and painting. Prerequisite: familiarity with a nonlinear video-editing program. This production course fulfills a moderation/major requirement. Registration open to Sophomores and above.

LIT 267: The Land of Disasters: A Cultural History of Catastrophic 'Japan'

Professor: Chiara Pavone

In a famous speech given shortly after the occurrence of the Great Tōhoku Earthquake, Tsunami and Nuclear Disaster in 2011, writer Murakami Haruki affirmed that “To be Japanese means, in a certain sense, to live alongside a variety of natural catastrophes.” This course’s main objective will be to explore and dispute the origins and genealogy of this – widespread and undisputed – claim. Each cvlass will introduce literary works and media tracing Japan’s history of natural and man-made disasters, explore different methodologies in disaster research (including disaster anthropology, sociology, post-colonial theory and ecocriticism), and engage critically with issues shaping the perception and representation of disasters – such as the proximity of narrators and narratees to the epicenter of the catastrophe, minority populations’ vulnerability to hazards and systemic discrimination, authority and biases in the process of memorialization. The course will offer some critical instruments to answer the question through the close reading of literary works, films and visual artifacts; and by situating these pieces in a larger cultural and technological history that extends well beyond the borders of the modern Japanese nation. This course is part of the World Literature offering.

LIT 379: Reading Emily Dickinson

Professors: Philip Pardi

Although frequently depicted as living and working in isolation, Emily Dickinson was vitally connected to the world around her. In this class, we will immerse ourselves in Dickinson’s writing, in the writers she was drawn to, and in the historical moment of which she was a part. By exploring how her work participates in the poetic practices and intellectual currents of her day, we will sharpen our understanding of her unique, even radical, contribution to American poetry. Along the way, we will consider Dickinson as a reader (of Emerson, the Psalms, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, and periodicals delivering news of the Civil War, for example) as well as her influence on poets who have read and responded to her (Adrienne Rich, Lorine Niedecker, Camille Dungy, and Rae Armantrout, to name a few). And as we read our way into Dickinson’s world, we will also take up the question of reading itself: What does it mean to read a poem “closely” and what kind(s) of attention does the act of reading require of us? What happens in the brain when we read and how can we enrich or deepen the experience? Note on Course Format: This course meets once a week for six hours. At the beginning of each session, we will turn off our phones (and laptops, smart watches, etc.) and be completely offline for the duration of the class. This will allow us to explore our existing habits as readers and to experiment with new ones. (Students who have concerns about the format of the course should contact the professor before registration.)

WRIT 255: Writing Poetries of Resistance: Resisting the Information Overload

Professor: Dawn Lundy Martin

There is a certain perversity in knowing. The disciplinary apparatuses of the state have taken forms of which we are newly aware. They watch and document under the auspices of providing safety for citizens. We, in turn, provide almost everyone with excess access to what we do, who we believe ourselves to be, and what we think. Is counter documentation possible? What does it mean to attempt to speak against power? What narratives, forms, languages, gestures, and means toward performance can help us create future selves liberated from the overabundance of record? In this course, we will work toward uncovering the effects of surveillance and AI on writing and imagine strategies for refusing those effects. Together we will generate anti-dossiers that resist totality and information accumulation (secret or other).

Fall 2023

ARTS 235: Introduction to Media

Professor: Joshua Glick

This course offers a foundation in media history and theory, with particular focus on how artists have experimented with emerging technologies and changing media landscapes in ways that both reflect and transform culture. We will consider old and new forms alike, from print media to social media, from the camera obscura to photography, from broadcast television to early net.art, and from the diorama to virtual reality, as we explore how media have continually constructed our perceptions of time, space, knowledge, and identity. We will read media theorists such as Walter Benjamin, Marshall McLuhan, Jessica Marie Johnson, Donna Haraway, Lev Manovich, Erkki Huhtamo, and Lisa Nakamura alongside examining the work of artists such as Nam June Paik, Stephanie Dinkins, Guillermo Goméz-Peña, Wendy Red Star, Ricardo Dominquez, Mary Flanagan, and Will Wilson. We will also spend hands-on time working creatively with media, in order to assess our own positions as producers as well as users and consumers of media. This course fulfills a requirement for the Experimental Humanities concentration.

ARCH 111 TT: After the Object: Relational Architecture

Professor: Thena Tak

This introductory studio course to architecture foregrounds the discipline as a practice of entanglements. Rather than privileging object-based thinking, the course considers architecture through a more alchemic approach: one that focuses on relationships, transformations, and ritual-making. The emphasis on relational-architecture, as opposed to object-architecture, will be explored through precedent analysis, critique, and transformation. The detrimental consequences of dominant western colonial tendencies to fragment, singularize, and flatten complex planetary stories and entanglements will be challenged through the examination of representation as a verbal, visual, and sonic language. Students will be asked to investigate these spatial relationships through representations that focus on illustrating time with basic animation techniques using digital softwares including Rhino, Illustrator, and Photoshop. No prerequisites. All spaces are reserved for incoming first year students. Registration for this class will take place in August.

ARCH 214 SL: Post-Eden: Conflicts, Coloniality and Plants

Professor: Stephanie Lee

How might botanical worlds carry notions of extractive economies, settler colonialism and legacies of racial capitalism? This elective design studio seminar will focus on the interconnectedness of property, plants and bodies from the past to present. While understanding the role of architecture and landscape in agri-capitalism, we will expose matters of resiliency, reform and recovery through case studies such as the Yedikule Gardens, Victory gardens, the Millennium Seed Bank, Crystal Palace, Orangeries, biopiracy and others. Focusing on the role of “floor plans” as an architectural device, we will situate these complex entanglements by collaborating on a toolkit of care for humans, land and everything in between. For the second half of the studio, we will work with the Bard Horticulture and Arboretum Department to design a land-based intervention for the campus. Students will have weekly assignments, and learn techniques of digital drafting, model making, compositional image-making through Adobe Creative Programs and Rhino 3D. No prerequisites.

ARTH 225: Art and Environment: Perspectives on Land, Landscape, and Ecology

Professor: Julia Rosenbaum

If we want to understand ourselves, we would do well to take a searching look at our landscapes. –D.W. Meinig (paraphrasing Peirce Lewis), The Interpretation of Ordinary Landscapes This course explores the relationship between the natural world and United States culture, considering specifically the visual expression of that relationship: How have Americans imagined “nature” and represented it? How have concepts of land and landscape shaped perceptions about social order, identity, and sustainability? The course provides both a historical framework for thinking about these questions as well as a contemporary perspective, particularly in the context of a potential new era known as the “Anthropocene.” Scholars in the sciences and the humanities increasingly use this term to describe the current global impact of human-dominated ecosystems. Over the semester we will examine diverse imagery, from mound-building to mapmaking to landscape painting, and explore multiple perspectives, from indigenous practices to visual tools of settler colonialism to environmental art activism. The class will engage both past and present ideas and debates about the natural world through visual and textual analysis, writing exercises, local sites, and individual research. AHVC distribution: 1500-present, Americas

BIO 102: Food Microbiology

Professor: Gabriel Perron

In this course designed for non-majors, we will study the microorganisms that inhabit, create, or contaminate food. The first half of the course will introduce students to topics in food safety such as food spoilage, food borne infections, and antibiotic resistance. In the second half of the course, students will learn how to harness the capabilities of the many microbes present in our environment to turn rotting vegetables or spoiling milk into delicious food. Students will also learn how next-generation technologies are revealing the important ecological dynamics shaping microbial communities in transforming food with possible beneficial effects on human health. Throughout the course, students will learn how to design, conduct, and analyze simple experiments while working with microbiology techniques, including DNA sequencing. No prerequisite.

CC 117 B: Race and Place: African American-Indigenous Studies Approaches

Professors: Christian Crouch and Peter L’Official

“The waters that are never still” flow past rural and urban communities alike that bear witness – or silence – in varying degrees the long-term presence of individuals of Indigenous and African descent in this region. This section uses an interdisciplinary approach to allow students to see how artists, critics, writers, and activists have approached ideas of belonging, transformation (willing or unwilling), removal, and race politics in the Mahicantuck Valley and beyond. Race and Place will re-read signal works of American literature alongside urban planning documents and historical works, in order to trace back the often-fraught relationship between people of color and the often-unseen forces that structure the landscapes that they call home. Historical context for case studies will supplement first-hand sources and literary works to provide students a grounding in the formations of removal policies, racial capitalism, and predatory real estate. Texts include writings by Hendrick Aupaumut, W.E.B Du Bois, Toni Morrison, Brandon Hobson, Mat Johnson, Zora Neale Hurston, Louise Erdrich, Alaina Roberts. Possible additional course place work may include visits to the Du Bois homestead site, Forge Project, and Winold Reiss’s studio and archive.

CMSC 226: Principles: Computing Systems

Professor: Sven Anderson

This course takes a systems perspective to the study of computers. As our programs scale up from a single author, user, and computer to programs designed, written, maintained, and used by multiple people that run on many computers (sometimes at the same time), considerations beyond algorithms alone are magnified. Design principles and engineering practices help us cope with this complexity: version control for multiple authors, input validation for multiple (adversarial) users, build automation tools for multiple platforms, process and thread models for parallelism. From how numbers are represented in hardware to how instruction-level parallelism and speculation can lead to bugs: the design, implementation, evaluation, safety and security of computing systems will be stressed. Students will explore computers from the ground up, using a variety of programming languages (including assembly) and tools like the command line, debuggers, and version control. Pre-requisites: Object-Oriented Programming or permission of instructor.

HR 321 A: Video advocacy: Clemency (Production)

Professors: Brent Green and Thomas Keenan

State governors (and the President) in the United States possess a strange remnant of royal sovereignty: the power of executive clemency, by which they can pardon offenses or commute the sentences of people convicted of crimes. They can do this to correct injustices, show mercy, or undo disproportionate punishments. Clemency doesn’t just happen – it requires a lot of work on the part of the incarcerated person and his or her advocates. But there are almost no rules governing what a clemency appeal looks like, so there is significant room for creativity in how applicants present their cases. In this practical seminar we will join forces with a team of students at CUNY Law School and the human rights organization WITNESS to prepare short video presentations that will accompany a number of New York State clemency applications this fall. Proficiency with video shooting, editing, and an independent work ethic are important. Meetings with clemency applicants in prison are a central element of the class. This is an opportunity to work collaboratively with law students and faculty, to do hands-on human rights research and advocacy, and to create work that has real-life impact. The class will alternate between video production and the study of clemency and pardons, emotion and human rights, first-person narrative, and persuasion by visual means. Please submit a short statement describing your abilities in shooting and editing video, and your interest in criminal justice, by May 6th. There are no prerequisites, but we seek a class that includes filmmakers, analysts, and activists. This is an Engaged Liberal Arts and Sciences (ELAS) class. Students are strongly encouraged to take HR 321 B together with this course.

HIST 180: Technology, Labor, Capitalism

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Artificial intelligence and the knowledge economy. Computation and Credit. Satellites and social media. Philanthropy and factory flight. “Doing what you love” and digital activism. Climate change and corporate consolidation. This class will explore changes in capitalism, technology, and labor in the twentieth- and twenty-first century United States. We will learn how ideas about work and technology have evolved over time, and how these dynamic ideas and evolving tools have shaped the present day.

LIT 2414: The Book Before Print

Professor: Marisa Libbon

Around 1475, an Englishman named William Caxton set up England’s first printing press at Westminster in London. Prior to this technological innovation (which the sixteenth-century writer John Foxe deemed miraculous), books were made from vellum (animal skin) and were written and illuminated—or painted—by hand. In this course, we’ll study medieval English manuscript-books as both cultural objects and literary artifacts, dividing our time between learning how manuscripts were imagined and constructed before the invention of the printing press, and reading them. For us, “reading” will mean engaging in literary and visual analysis of our texts—including epics, lyrics, myths, and romances, all of which will be made available in modern printed editions—as well as learning to decipher the handwriting of scribes responsible for copying our texts. Our work will raise questions about literacy and its definitions; literary labor; the history of the book; the development and preservation of literary and visual artifacts; the relationship between image and text; the ethical and practical problems of producing modern printed editions of handwritten texts; and the proximity of anonymous pre-print culture to the so-called Internet Age. We will also gain some hands-on experience with manuscripts via the College’s recently acquired raw manuscript materials, medieval manuscript leaves, and manuscript facsimiles. This is a pre-1800 Literature course offering.

LIT 3233: American Study

Professor: Peter L’Official

Calderwood Seminar: “Writing about music is like dancing about architecture.” Attributed at times to Laurie Anderson, David Byrne, Elvis Costello, Miles Davis, and Thelonious Monk, among many others, this irresistible aphorism suggests the myriad difficulties of writing arts and cultural criticism—not to mention of writing in general. What does it mean to write about American culture? What is culture? What is America, for that matter? What might it mean to “study” America’s cultural products, aesthetics, and history, and how can we translate our experiences of these into critical argument or reflection? The title of New York Times film critic A.O. Scott’s book is Better Living Through Criticism. In this class, we will attempt to understand American culture and life by practicing the art of criticism. This course examines various forms of culture writing that interrogates and illuminates works in American literature, art, film, music, and, yes, architecture, space, and the city. For this class, “study” will constitute a collective, investigative, and interdisciplinary practice. This is a Calderwood Seminar in Public Writing. Calderwood seminars are writing-intensive classes intended for majors in the field or in affiliated fields. They are designed to help students think about how to translate their discipline or interdisciplinary training to non-specialists through different forms of public writing. The focus of the seminar is on student writing, peer review, and editing, with required weekly assignment deadlines. Assignments will likely include book, film, music, and art reviews, and omnibus essays.

WRIT 126: Poetics of Attention

Professor: Philip Pardi

Whether we train our gaze outward at the world around us or inward at worlds within, poets are called to pay attention in particular ways. In this class, we will consider attention as the first step of the creative process, and we will study and practice the seemingly simple act of attending to all that we encounter as we move through our days and (on a good day) make poems. While we will devote some time to revision, the focus of this workshop will be the fertile ground between immersive experience and early, generative, exploratory poetic composition. The longer Friday session will be spent writing together, taking short walks and excursions, sharing our work, and discussing readings related to the science and practice of attention; the one-hour Wednesday session will be devoted to a sustained exploration of a single poem. Special Note: To facilitate our experiment with attentiveness, class meetings and most of the assignments will occur completely offline (i.e. no phone, no laptop, no smartwatch). If you have any concerns about this (or any) aspect of the course format, please contact me before registration. All spaces are reserved for incoming first year and transfer students. Registration for this class will take place in August.

ARTS 323: Social Media and Activism

Professor: Fahmidul Haq

Social media has transformed into profit-driven platforms that monetize user data by selling it to marketers. Despite this, many individuals have attempted to leverage these platforms for social change. In recent years, social and political movements have effectively utilized social media as a tool for advancement. This course will explore the various aspects of social media activism. Theoretical concepts by Manuel Castells, Christian Fuchs, and Zeynep Tufekci will be explored, with an emphasis on major movements such as the Arab Spring, Occupy Wall Street, #metoo, #blacklivesmatter, as well as movements from countries like Hong Kong, India, Nigeria, and Bangladesh. Discussion will focus on issues and challenges related to digital activism, including platform capitalism, misinformation, alt-right populism, and the collaboration between platforms and governments. Additionally, the course will delve into the future of social media activism. Work will include several short assignments as well as a research project.

ARCH 111 SL: How to Build a Ruin

Professor: Stephanie Lee

This studio course will introduce students to the language of architectural representation by framing the field of architecture as an ever changing process of social imagination and spatial deterioration. We will aim to understand design practice as an inherent mediation between changes in natural and cultural forces on buildings and environments. Engaging with ideas of decay, disrepair, and decrepitude, we will create fictional histories of dying industries situated in rural and suburban environments such as malls, farms, bank branches, and gas stations. Alongside readings about the legacies of capitalism and socio-economic crises, students will utilize techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, physical modeling, and compositional image-making to explore regenerative design processes and the emergence of new spatial possibilities for “ruins”. No prerequisites.

ARCH 111 BC: New Manuals: Redesigning Architectural Rituals

Professor: Betsy Clifton

This studio course is an introduction to architecture through a close examination of the societal norms and rituals embedded in ordinary spaces. How do these spaces breed indifference, passivity and alienation? How might they afford moments of repose, performance or joy? What potentials do these spaces hold for collective, creative revolutionary transformation? Students in this course will closely examine how routines of everyday life, both public and domestic, are spatialized in architecture. We will unpack and revise our common understandings of places we use habitually; gas stations, ATM vestibules, waiting rooms, awnings, bus stops, janitor closets, among many others. Using (and misusing) architectural representational methods, such as digital drafting, conceptual analysis, physical models, and experimental image-making, as well as readings and discussions on contemporary theorists and practitioners, students will propose new spatial strategies that suggest alternative everyday rituals. We will treat our design material as propaganda. As such, we will compile our work in the form of a graphic manual that at once looks to unsettle the relation between space and ritual, while at the same reimagining them. No prerequisites.

ARTH 318: Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives

Professor:  Anne Chen

What silences do archaeological archives unintentionally preserve? In what ways do power and privilege influence the creation and shape of archaeological archives, and dictate who has access to them? How might new technologies help us begin to rectify inequities of access? Once called by its excavators the “Pompeii of the East,” the ancient archaeological site of Dura-Europos (Syria) preserves evidence of what everyday life was like in an ancient Roman city. The site is home to the earliest Christian church building yet found, the most elaborately decorated ancient synagogue known to date, and testifies to the ways in which ancient religions and cultures intermingled and inspired one another. Yet since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011, the site has been irreparably compromised for future archaeological exploration. More than ever, our knowledge and understanding of the site will depend almost entirely upon archival information collected in the course of archaeological excavations that took place 100 years ago when Syria was under French colonial occupation. In this hands-on practicum course focused on the case-study of this fascinating archaeological site, students will not only learn what we know of Dura-Europos as it was in antiquity, but will also think critically about issues central to the use and development of archival resources more generally. Coursework will center around firsthand engagement with data, artifacts, and archival materials from the site, and will allow students the opportunity to develop guided research projects that ultimately contribute toward the goal of improving the site’s accessibility and intelligibility to users worldwide. The methods and critical perspectives explored in this class will be particularly relevant to students interested in exploring careers in GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museum) fields. Class meetings will occur approximately eight times during the semester (precise meeting schedule to be set at the beginning of the semester). AHVC distribution: Ancient.

CC 117 A: Rethinking Place: Art/Science Collaboration

Professors: Elias Dueker and Krista Caballero

We generally assume maps are objective, accurate representations of data and the world around us when, in fact, they depict the knowledge, experience, and values of the humans who draft them. This practicum section brings together the arts and sciences to better understand changes in water, climate and communities via creative, hands-on projects focused on the Saw Kill watershed, which encompasses the Bard campus. We will study radical cartography practices as a method for environmental advocacy alongside artistic and counter-mapping approaches that experiment with ways we might communicate scientific and humanistic knowledge to a wider audience. Throughout the semester, specific projects will be created in collaboration with the GIS for Environmental Justice course.

CC 117 C: Rethinking Place: Methods and Theory

Professors: Margaux Kristjansson and Luis Chavez

This section is an introduction to advanced embodied and place-based methodologies in Indigenous Studies. It will focus on Indigenous performance and sensory modes of knowing; along with exploring anticolonial queer and feminist modes of knowledge production. Texts from: Linda Tuhiwai-Smith, Chris Anderson, Maggie Walter, Jessica Berrea, Zoila Mendoza, Billy-Ray Belcourt, Eve Tuck, Lisa Stevenson, Beverly Diamond, Audra Simpson, Mikinaak Migwans and Oyeronke Oyewumi.

CMSC 141: Object-Oriented Programming

Professor: Rose Sloan (A) & Bob McGrail (B)

This course introduces students to the methodologies of object-oriented design and programming, which are used throughout the Computer Science curriculum. Students will learn how to move from informal problem statement, through increasingly precise problem specifications, to design and implementation of a solution for problems drawn from areas such as graphics, animation, simulation. Good programming and documentation habits are emphasized.

FILM 225: 3D Animation

Professor: Ben Coonley

In this course, students are introduced to processes for creating moving image artworks using 3D animation software and its ancillary technologies. Topics include: the basics of 3D modeling and animation, 3D scanning, and creative use of other technologies that allow artists to combine real and virtual spaces. Weekly readings reflect on the psychological, cultural, and aesthetic impacts of the increasingly prevalent use of computer-generated imagery in contemporary media. Students are not assumed to have any previous experience with 3D animation. This production class fulfills a moderation requirement.

FILM 335: Video Installation

Professor: Ben Coonley

This production course explores the challenges and possibilities of video installation: an evolving contemporary art form that extends video beyond conventional exhibition spaces such as theaters into sculptural, site-specific, physically immersive, and multiple channel exhibition contexts. Presentations, screenings, and readings augment critical thinking about temporal and spatial relationships, narrative structure, viewer perception and the challenges of presenting time-based media artwork in a gallery or museum setting. Workshops hone technical skills and introduce methods for the creative use of video projectors, video monitors, sound equipment, surveillance cameras, media players, multi-channel synchronizers, digital software, and lightweight sculptural elements. Students develop research interests and apply their unique skill sets to short turnaround exercises and a larger self-directed final project. This is an advanced course. Students are expected to have some experience with videocamera operation and editing. This course fulfills a moderation/major requirement.

HR 321 B: Video advocacy: Clemency (Reading)

Professors: Brent Green and Thomas Keenan

This class is a 2-credit companion to HR 321A, for those students who wish to read additional scholarly material on clemency, the U.S. criminal justice system, pardons and forgiveness, the role of images in human rights activism, first-person testimony and narrative, advocacy, and other related topics. It does not include a video production component. Students in HR 321A are urged to take it; others are welcome, space permitting.

HUM 234: Landscape Studies: The Hudson River Valley

Professor: Jana Mader

For centuries, the land on which the Bard Arboretum now sits has been inhabited and used by diverse societies and cultures. In this course, students learn to critically engage with the existing landscape and vegetation to unfold “the story” of the land now owned by Bard College. By confronting the narratives that shaped these lands from an interdisciplinary perspective, students can build skills to become informed and impactful agents of change. Particular areas of inquiry include the Hudson River Valley in art, literature, music, and film; the history of Native Americans, colonialism, and slavery in the region; horticulture, bio-diversity, and native plants of the Hudson River Valley (living collection). We will explore the past, present, and possible future of the Hudson River Valley through a series of primary and secondary sources including fiction and nonfiction works of literature, visual art, film, etc. Meetings will be held in the classroom, and outdoors at the Bard Arboretum, Montgomery Place, and Blithewood; we will observe and study the actual river, our native plants, and learn more about how our current home and what we see in it have changed over time.

LIT 263: What is a Character?

Professor: Adhaar Desai

We are often drawn to characters more than anything else in our encounters with books, plays, or movies. This happens despite our knowing that characters remain exactly what their name implies: trapped by printed letters, scriptedness, or the limits of a screen. Characters are always mediated, but they can also show us how concepts like humanity and personhood depend on and contend with the media humans use to share ideas. In this course, we will study the history of characters in western fiction to learn how archetypes, racial and gendered stereotypes, historical or geographical settings, and the capabilities of different media technologies shape our encounters with them. We will also explore different ways of “reading” characters by thinking about how computer algorithms might understand something as supposedly complex as an individual’s personality. Primary texts will include Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Stevenson’s Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde, Parks’s The America Play, Cusk’s Outline, and short stories by Toni Morrison, Kate Chopin, and others. We will also consider films, television shows, and video games. Students will have the opportunity to become characters in class debates, discuss fan fiction, and experiment with how to translate characters between media as we engage in analytical, theoretical, and creative work throughout the term.

LIT 144: Failing with Style: Introduction to Renaissance Poetry

Professor: Adhaar Desai

When we think about Renaissance poetry, we tend to think of the sonnet: rule-bound, artificial, and old-fashioned. The funny thing is, the poets writing in the English Renaissance tried everything they could to make their poems appear as just the opposite: organic, sincere, and excitingly new. When they realized that their experiments were failures, they also came to see the failures as interesting in new ways. What resulted was a period of wild and flourishing literary inventiveness. Beginning with the reign of Queen Elizabeth I and ending around the tumultuous English Civil Wars and the regicide of King Charles I, the century spanning 1550 to 1650 in English history was responsible for grand upheavals in culture, religion, politics, and science. Accordingly, just beneath the veneer of formal qualities like rhyme and meter, poems from the period are sensitive and probing explorations of chaos, frustration, madness, desire, and the sublime. By focusing on experiences of error, uncertainty, shame, and failure, this course examines how Renaissance poets fought with language as they tried to say things that they did not know how to say. Through both critical and creative exercises, students will develop an approach to writing unafraid of failure and emboldened by experiences of risk-taking. We’ll hone a deep understanding of essential aspects of poetry while we think about how it was (and still is) a tool for thought and an instrument of emotional understanding. The course covers a broad range of major works as well as less commonly-read (yet indelibly great) poetry—especially poetry by women. Shakespeare, Spenser, and Donne will take their place in context alongside poets like Isabella Whitney, Mary Wroth, Katherine Philips, George Herbert, and Amelia Lanyer. This is a pre-1800 Literature course offering.

THTR 369: Digital Theaters

Professor: Miriam Felton-Dansky

Theater artists have been engaging with digital culture for as long as digital culture has existed — using live performance to ask fundamental questions about media and using software and other forms of computing to expand the practice of live performance. This Bard network course addresses how theater and performance, as live embodied practices and forms of communal encounter, have permanently shifted during the COVID-19 pandemic, and celebrates new forms of performance that have emerged. We will ask questions about the politics of the digital world, the capacity of digital encounters to both reinforce and interrogate societal of biases and injustices, and the power of placing live art in conversation with digital art. We will investigate dispersed digital formats – WhatsApp and instagram performances, VR/AR-experiences, Zoom theater – using case studies from Berlin, Vienna/Budapest, Bogota, London, Johannesburg and Annandale/New York City. This is an OSUN Network Collaborative Course taught in partnership courses on Digital Theatres offered at (list of all partner institutions) Universidad de los Andes, Bard College Berlin, Birkbeck, CEU, and University of the Witwatersrand. Our work will be both practice and analytical, and the semester will culminate in a digital performance mini-festival. Assessment will be based on critical responses, creative digital projects, and participation. This course counts as a Junior Lab for Theater & Performance majors, but welcomes students from all fields and years who are enthusiastic about the subject matter.

Spring 2023

ARCH 111 SL: How to Build a Ruin

Professor: Stephanie Lee

This studio course will introduce students to the language of architectural representation by framing the field of architecture as an everchanging process of social imagination and spatial deterioration. We will aim to understand design practice as an inherent mediation between changes in natural and cultural forces on buildings and environments. Engaging with ideas of decay, disrepair, and decrepitude, we will create fictional histories of dying industries situated in rural and suburban environments such as malls, farms, bank branches, and gas stations. Alongside readings about the legacies of capitalism and socio-economic crises, students will utilize techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, physical modeling, and compositional image-making to explore regenerative design processes and the emergence of new spatial possibilities for “ruins”. No prerequisites are necessary.

ARCH 130 TT: Fossil Invitations: rethinking architectural site analysis through deep time

Professor: Thena Tak

Site analysis in architecture has become a rather routine practice, perhaps even performative. Oftentimes, an expected set of drawings acts only as evidence of due diligence rather than as instruments for an archaeological kind of thinking and seeing whereby a place is invited to share its ancestors, proclivities, and quirks. Given that architecture is a practice very much entangled with place, how might we expand our anthropocentric conventions of how a ‘site’ is considered and represented? How do we form invitations to a place that engages its deep time? How do we greet its varied, and continuously forming biographies? And can ‘site analysis’ even be approached as a deeper form of land acknowledgement? In this 5 week-long, intensive workshop, students will be asked to rethink ‘site analysis’ through the design and making of plaster core samples that reflect an expanded understanding of place – where trees, soil, and fossils are acknowledged as both witnesses and makers of memory, mineral, and myth. Each core sample becomes a vessel of specific temporal, material, and spatial meditations of a given place. From the making of these, students will then draw and represent their core samples digitally using Rhino and Adobe Suite software. No prerequisites. This intensive workshop will run only during the first 5 weeks of the term.

ARTH 2030: Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives (Part 1)

Professor: Anne Chen

What silences do archaeological archives unintentionally preserve? In what ways do power and privilege influence the creation and shape of archaeological archives, and dictate who has access to them? How might new technologies help us begin to rectify inequities of access? Once called by its excavators the “Pompeii of the East,” the ancient archaeological site of Dura-Europos (Syria) preserves evidence of what everyday life was like in an ancient Roman city. The site is home to the earliest Christian church building yet found, the most elaborately decorated ancient synagogue known to date, and testifies to the ways in which ancient religions and cultures intermingled and inspired one another. Yet since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011, the site has been irreparably compromised for future archaeological exploration. More than ever, our knowledge and understanding of the site will depend almost entirely upon archival information collected in the course of archaeological excavations that took place 100 years ago when Syria was under French colonial occupation. In this hands-on practicum course focused on the case-study of this fascinating archaeological site, students will not only learn what we know of Dura-Europos as it was in antiquity, but will also think critically about issues central to the use and development of archival resources more generally. Coursework will center around firsthand engagement with data, artifacts, and archival materials from the site, and will allow students the opportunity to develop guided research projects that ultimately contribute toward the goal of improving the site’s accessibility and intelligibility to users worldwide. The methods and critical perspectives explored in this class will be particularly relevant to students interested in exploring careers in GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museum) fields. Class meetings will occur approximately eight times during the semester (precise meeting schedule to be set at the beginning of the semester). AHVC distribution: Ancient.

ARTH 306: Deconstructing the Historic Site: The Lab at Montgomery Place

Professor: Susan Merriam

Can we radically reimagine the traditional historic site for the twenty-first century? That question will be our focus in this course, which will use Bard’s Montgomery Place as a laboratory to experiment with ideas about exhibitions, historical narratives, and archives. In the early weeks of the semester we’ll consider the origins and reception of historic sites, and then turn our attention to the house, grounds, and outbuildings at Montgomery Place. Topics animating our discussions will include: the relevance of the site to contemporary life; the relationship between center and periphery; the types of historical narratives we might reimagine; the way we value, display, describe, and archive objects. Course work will include object and archive research, writing, and curating. Our work will be publicized on a course website designed to engage the public in our experiments, and will thus create a new archive for the site. Open to all moderated students. AHVC distribution: Modern, Americas.

ARTS 208: Understanding Social Media

Professor: Fahmid Haq

Doing social media projects practically and analyzing their role critically are two main objectives of the course. This course will raise some critical question that evolve around social media which will include – surveillance and privacy, labor, big data, misinformation, cyborg and cyberfeminism. Topics will include the socio-historical perspectives regarding technology and society, the nature and characteristics of different social media such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, snapchat and more, big data capitalism and imperialism, civic engagement through digital platforms, mainstream media’s compelling realities to be more ‘social’, misinformation, racism and right-wing authoritarianism in social media, the role of social media influencers, branding and social media marketing and an exploration for a true social media. The course will draw from a broad range of social theory including communication and cultural theories, political economy and media anthropology to critically evaluate the impact of social media on human relationships, activism, branding, politics, news production and dissemination and identity formation. Theoretical notions such as hyperreality by Jean Baudrillard, network society by Manuel Castells and digital labor by Christian Fuchs will be discussed in the class. As ‘prosumers’, students will create social media projects and analyze some trendy cases evident in different platforms.

ARTS 310: The Belly is a Garden

Professor: Vivien Sansour

Inspired by the Palestinian saying El Batin Bustan (The Belly is a Garden) this course explores bio-cultural diversity and the question of being of the earth and part of its diverse terrains. Fundamental questions we will explore are: How can biodiversity and human diversity be paths to wellbeing? How can humans understand themselves as nature’s co-creators? This course is designed as an experiential journey using multiple forms, including original texts, discussion, guided fieldwork directed by faculty, nature walks, in class writing exercises, and group workshops. Students will work in consultation with the professor on individual self-directed projects throughout the semester. These projects will be presented at the end of semester to the combined class of AQB and Annandale. The projects will all require some form of field research such as conducting interviews, gathering site related natural material for possible installations, photography, oral histories, film, among others including performance art. Students will engage in hands-on, outdoor activities such as cooking, planting, and possibly seed or crop harvesting with discussions of key texts grounding our interdisciplinary investigation. In an attempt to deconstruct colonial forms of being we will be exploring ourselves as living beings navigating a global landscape that is both in crisis and in constant transformation. How do we relate to the soil beneath our feet? How are we informed by other living beings in our surroundings? Between the question of settler and Indigenous how can we better understand ourselves, and our place in the world, while engaging in collaborative designs of new possible futures? As an OSUN Network Course, students will have the opportunity to participate in shared online events and conversations with students at Al-Quds Bard College, Palestine but the majority of the semester will be in-person on Bard’s Annandale Campus. This is an OSUN Network Collaborative Course, taught on multiple OSUN partner institutions and designed to allow students to learn and work together across campuses.

FILM 203: Digital Animation

Professor: Jacqueline Goss

In this course we will make video and web-based projects using digital animation and compositing programs (primarily Adobe Animate and After Effects). The course is designed to help students develop a facility with these tools and to find personal animating styles that surpass the tools at hand. We will work to reveal techniques and aesthetics associated with digital animation that challenge conventions of storytelling, editing, figure/ground relationship, and portrayal of the human form. To this end, we will refer to diverse examples of animating and collage from film, music, writing, photography, and painting. Prerequisite: familiarity with a nonlinear video-editing program. This production course fulfills a moderation/major requirement. Registration open to Sophomores and above.

FILM 371: Media in the Age of AIHIST 144: The History of Experiment

Professor: Gregory Moynahan

The scientific method and the modern form of the scientific experiment are arguably the most powerful innovations of the modern period. Although dating back in its modern form to only the sixteenth century, the concept of the experiment as an attempt to find underlying continuities in experience has numerous origins stretching back to earliest recorded history. In tttempturse, we will examine how different experiments and artisanal practices have been used to interpret the natural world, and how those interpretations are reflective of the time periods and cultural contexts in which they were made. We will conduct our own experiments in replicability, discuss performance and the public culture of science, and explore the visual and material cultures of science. This course is required for those who wish to concentrate in Experimental Humanities.

LIT 394: Beyond Technopolis: Media / Theory / Japan

Professor: Nathan Shockey

In the global imaginary, Japan frequently floats as a symbol for high-tech hyper-futurism, a vision into a techno-utopian (or dystopian) wonderland. This course takes up the rich body of theoretical and conceptual work on media from and surrounding Japan in order to decenter Eurocentric media theory while exploring the complexity of modern Japan’s own media ecologies. In addition to reading major Japanese texts of media theory on topics like film, photography, animation, games, and networked subjectivity, we will also peruse the robust body of recent English-language scholarship thinking with and through the Japanese context, as well bring works of Japanese literature and visual art into conversation with movements in global media theory. Further nexuses of investigation include the connections and intersections between: architecture, infrastructure, and communications; media environments, consumer technology, and climate change; role-playing games, virtual, and augmented realities; and techne-zen, personal computing, and the spirit of global capitalism, among others. We will also consider the role of fantasies of Japan in the Western imaginary, including conversations on techno-orientalism, post-human consciousness, and strategies for making sense of digital age excesses of sensation and information. No prior knowledge or coursework on Japan or Japanese is required and students with backgrounds in Experimental Humanities and media art are especially encouraged to register.

SPAN 301: Introduction to Spanish Literature in conversation with the Visual Arts

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

This course explores some of the major literary works produced on the Iberian Peninsula from the Middle Ages to the present day. Students will become familiar with the general contours of Spanish history as they study in depth a selected number of masterpieces, including works by Miguel de Cervantes, Calderón de la Barca, Teresa de Jesús, Cadalso, Larra, Galdós, Emilia PardoBazán, Unamuno, Lorca, and Carmen Laforet. The course will be organized around three thematic modules: Spanish culture’s engagement with notions of purity and pollution; the emergence and evolution of the first person singular in Spanish literature; and the representations of the country and the city, the center and the periphery. In each module we will undertake a survey of relevant literature occasionally put in conversation with the visual arts. Conducted in Spanish.

WRIT 345: Imagining Nonhuman Consciousness

Professor: Benjamin Hale

Philosopher Thomas Nagel asked, “What is it like to be a bat?” Ultimately, he determined the question unanswerable: A bat’s experience of the world is so alien to our own that it is beyond the human understanding of subjective experience. That’s arguable. But it is true at least that a bat’s experience—or that of any other nonhuman consciousness—is not inaccessible to human imagination. In this course we will read and discuss a wide variety of texts, approaching the subject of nonhuman consciousness through literature, philosophy, and science. We will read works that attempt to understand the experiences of apes, panthers, rats, ticks, elephants, octopuses, lobsters, cows, bats, monsters, puppets, computers, and eventually, zombies. Course reading may include Descartes, Kafka, Rilke, Jakob von Uexküll, Patricia Highsmith, John Gardner, J.A. Baker, Eduardo Kohn, David Foster Wallace, Zora Neale Hurston, Temple Grandin, Jane Goodall, Thomas Nagel, John Searle, Susan Daitch, Giorgio Agamben, Bennett Sims, and E. O. Wilson, among others, in addition to a viewing of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later, and possibly other films. There will be several long writing assignments over the course of the semester, and a workshop component. Students interested in this workshop must email [email protected]

ARCH 111 BC: New Manuals: Redesigning Architectural Rituals

Professor: Betsy Clifton

This studio course is an introduction to architecture through a close examination of the societal norms and rituals embedded in ordinary spaces. How do these spaces breed indifference, passivity and alienation? How might they afford moments of repose, performance or joy? What potentials do these spaces hold for collective, creative revolutionary transformation? Students in this course will closely examine how routines of everyday life, both public and domestic, are spatialized in architecture. We will unpack and revise our common understandings of places we use habitually; gas stations, ATM vestibules, waiting rooms, awnings, bus stops, janitor closets, among many others. Using (and misusing) architectural representational methods, such as digital drafting, conceptual analysis, physical models, and experimental image-making, as well as readings and discussions on contemporary theorists and practitioners, students will propose new spatial strategies that suggest alternative everyday rituals. We will treat our design material as propaganda. As such, we will compile our work in the form of a graphic manual that at once looks to unsettle the relation between space and ritual, while at the same reimagining them. No prerequisites.

ARCH 221 SL: Para-fictional Design Investigations: Hard Labor, Soft Space

Professor: Stephanie Lee

How can we approach architecture beyond form-based explorations, but as a mode to reimagine current sociopolitical, institutional, and territorial entanglements? This design studio seminar explores architecture as a network of situated relationships between built and non-built environments. We will inquire design research from a planetary dimension by zooming in, pulling apart, and realigning various forms of rural, agricultural, and food systems. Through the appropriation of fact and fiction, students will learn to utilize architectural mediums to produce new subjectivities instead of cementing existing hierarchies and visual relationships. Using speculative drawings, modeling and experimental mapping, students will explore the Hudson Valley region as a site of radical ruralism. We will question the destructive and extractive processes of industrial agriculture, globalization and late capitalism, by carefully suggesting a parafictional alternative: a land practice of resistance, regeneration, and mutual care. Operating as a collaborative studio-seminar, we will produce a series of drawings that reads as one collective canvas with multiple scales, perspectives, and realities. In addition to design workshops, we will discuss readings from Monica White, Dolores Hayden, bell hooks, Adrienne Brown, Lydia Kallipoliti, Jenny Odell, Carrie Lambert-Beatty, Leah Penniman, Saidiya Hartman and Kathryn Yusoff – among others. Prerequisites: ARCH 111 or professor’s permission.

ARTH 204: Art and Experiment in Early Modern Europe

Professor: Susan Merriam

This course is a meditation on the meaning and histories of artistic experimentation in early modern Europe (1500-1800). At this time, art and science were often intricately connected, and artists took for granted the notion that they could manipulate and experiment with materials (oil paint for example), techniques (such as printmaking), and conceptual approaches to art making. Some of the areas we will examine include anatomical studies, optical experiments, and the use of materials and techniques. Questions we will pursue: What is meant by “visual experiment”? How might artistic failure be generative? How did artistic experiments shape practices we would now consider to be located solely in the realm of science, such as anatomical study? What is the relationship between experiment and risk? How might we compare artistic experiments in the early modern period to those undertaken in our own? As we study artistic experiment, we will create our own visual experiments using both old and new technologies. A highlight will be working with a life-sized camera obscura. This course satisfies the Experimental Humanities core course requirement for “History of the Experiment.” AHVC distribution: Modern, Europe.

ARTH 304: Minor Figures: Architecture and Biography

Professor:  Olga Touloumi

What can we learn about the built environment and its politics from someone’s biography? What kind of evidence and stories lie within the personal? Building on Saidiya Hartman’s experiments with speculative histories for “minor figures”, this course foregrounds intersectional and feminist methodologies in the study of women’s lives and their role in architecture. We will use the life of Afro-French architect Christine Benglia (1936-2020) as a lens to examine the role that biography and personal narratives can play in recovering marginalized voices and positionalities in the production of space. Students will engage in work with primary sources – Benglia’s personal papers, oral history records, correspondence, sketches – in order to uncover the perspective of a black, middle-class woman from France learning, teaching, and working as an architect in the United States during the post-World War II period. The goal will be to extrapolate the larger framework and questions around gender, race, and class that shaped postwar American architecture and art from Benglia’s personal and intimate world of objects and words. To help us in this exploration, we will be using as our lens theoretical texts by Angela Davis, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Michel Foucault, Saidiya Hartman, Gloria Anzaldúa, among others. The course will culminate in the collaborative design of a website and an exhibition, involving also independent research and writing. Art History and Visual Culture Requirements: Modern, Americas.

ARTS 221: Beyond Bollywood: Mapping South Asian Cinema

Professor: Fahmid Haq

South Asian Cinema is nearly synonymous with Indian Cinema to the international audience, though other South Asian countries such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal have developed strong film cultures too. The objective of the course is mapping the cine profile of the South Asian countries and examining Bollywood’s hegemonic presence in the region. This seminar course will study some cases across a range of South Asian Cinema cultures by exploring their common as well as different cultural backgrounds, historiography, and sociopolitical realities. Topics will include both historical and contemporary cinematic practices in South Asian countries such as the Partition of India in South Asian Cinema, cinematic representation of the Liberation War of Bangladesh, Bollywood’s cultural influence in other South Asian countries, portrayal of Kashmir in Indian cinema, diasporic Indian cinema and ‘other Bollywood’ cinema. Films by directors such as Raj Kapoor, Satyajit Ray, Ritwik Ghatak and Anurag Kashyap from India, Zahir Raihan, Alamgir Kabir and Tareque Masud from Bangladesh, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and Shoaib Mansoor from Pakistan, and Lester James Peries from Sri Lanka will be studied closely.

AS 310: Art, Animals & Anthropocene

Professor: Krista Caballero

From species extinction to radioactive soil and climate change, we are now in the age of the Anthropocene. This recently proposed geologic period refers to the ways in which human activities have dramatically impacted and altered every ecosystem on Earth. Now in an age of mass extinction, what does it mean to visually interpret our more-than-human world and explore the often messy and complicated encounters between human and nonhuman animals? Indigenous and traditional ecological knowledge will ground our exploration as we consider the cultural, artistic, and technological implications of species decline. Our focus will include examining animal representations from caves to cages and from the living to the virtual, as well as themes of the wild and the tame, zoos, laboratory research, and companion species. Each of these topics will be paired with an exploration of the ever-increasing presence of animals in contemporary art with particular emphasis on multimedia and inter-species installations, bio art, as well as experimental video, film, and performance. Students will work intensively to develop experimental humanities approaches that blur boundaries between physical and digital media, integrate field-based research in the Hudson Valley, and experiment with interdisciplinary practices of art making in order to grapple with ways in which our understanding of other species directly relates to human self-understanding. This course is part of the Rethinking Place: Bard-on-Mahicantuck Initiative.

CMSC 141: Object-Oriented Programming

Professor: Rose Sloan

This course introduces students to the methodologies of object-oriented design and programming, which are used throughout the Computer Science curriculum. Students will learn how to move from informal problem statement, through increasingly precise problem specifications, to design and implementation of a solution for problems drawn from areas such as graphics, animation, simulation. Good programming and documentation habits are emphasized.

FILM 256: Writing the Film

Professor: A. Sayeeda Moreno

An introductory writing course that looks at creative approaches to writing short films and dialogue scenes. Starting with personal histories, lineage, and identities, students learn the tools to write invigorating, character-driven short screenplays. The course will focus on poetic strategies creating the blueprint for a narrative fiction film. Building characters through transcription, investigation, and fictionalizing of family and friends to enhance character development, story arc, creating a visual language. With writing assignments and vigorous analysis establishing the bedrock, students develop and workshop a short screenplay (maximum 10-15 pages). This course will require extensive outside research. You are responsible for committing to a rigorous writing and rewriting process. Registration open to Sophomores and above. This is an elective course for Film and Electronic Arts and does not fulfill moderation/major requirement.

LIT 273: The City and the Experiment

Professor: Adhaar Desai

This course satisfies the “History of the Experiment” requirement for the Experimental Humanities concentration. Modernity is often described in terms of the development of science’s experimental method and in terms of the proliferation of populations living in urban environments. What does experimentation have to do with how communities and publics organize their lives in cities? How have certain populations been disempowered and marginalized, and how have other aspects of civic life, such as politics, infrastructure, the environment, cultural production, and public health been impacted by the relationship between science and technology and urban life? This course studies two twinned concepts, “the city” and “the experiment,” from a variety of different disciplinary perspectives to interrogate the distances between experimentation and lived experience, theory and practice, and the humanities, the arts, and the sciences. Collaborative and interdisciplinary in both form and content, this is an OSUN Network-Collaborative course that will involve sustained interactions between students at Bard College and students in a parallel urban sociology course at the European Humanities University in Lithuania. Culminating in the study of “urban laboratories” as sites of sociological experimentation, the course will challenge students at Bard and EHU to collaboratively, imaginatively, and experimentally engage with concrete civic problems. Readings will stretch from early modernity and the Enlightenment through urgent contemporary texts, and will situate artistic works by authors such as Thomas More, Italo Calvino, Octavia Butler, and N. K. Jemisin alongside theoretical, historical, and critical texts by Francis Bacon, Augusto Boal, Jane Jacobs, Michel de Certeau, Doreen Massey, and Bruno Latour. This is an OSUN Network Collaborative Course, taught on multiple OSUN partner institutions and designed to allow students to learn and work together across campuses.

MUS 262: Topics in Music Software: Introduction to Max/Msp

Professor: Matthew Sargent

This course will introduce students to Max/Msp, an object-oriented programming environment for real-time audio processing, digital synthesis, algorithmic composition, data sonification, and more. Students will learn fundamental concepts of digital audio and computer programming while engaging in creative projects and in-class performances. The class will include examples of Max patches found in major works of 20/21st century electroacoustic music and sound art repertoire. The course will also explore connectivity between Max and other software applications, including Max4Live. The course will conclude with a final project. Introduction to Electronic Music, or a 100-level course in Computer Science, is recommended as a prerequisite.

HIST/THTR 236: Power and Performance in the Colonial Atlantic

Professors: Christian Crouch and Miriam Felton-Dansky

Societies in different historical periods have strategically used performance to stage, reinforce, and re-imagine the scope of political and colonial power. The history of the theater connects directly with the history of how societies have performed conquest, colonialism, cultural patrimony, and cultural resistance in different parts of the world. This interdisciplinary course, covering performance and power of the early modern period, disrupts assumptions about both the disciplines of theater and history. Students will read baroque plays as well as modern plays reflecting on the colonial Atlantic world, study the historical context of this era, and experiment with staging scenes, to uncover the links between imagined and actual Atlantic expansion and the impact of colonialism, from 1492 forward. Artistic forms to be examined include the English court masque, the Spanish auto sacramental, and spectacles of power and conversion staged in the colonial Americas; plays will range from Shakespeare’s The Tempest to Marivaux’s The Island of Slaves to allegorical works by Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz and works by Aimé Césaire and Madeline Sayet. The course readings also cover history and theory around settler colonialism, performance studies, and transatlantic slavery. This course is part of the Rethinking Place: Bard-on-Mahicantuck Initiative.

Fall 2022

ARCH 111 MC: Spatial Subjects: Architecture as Media

Professor: Michael Robinson Cohen

This studio-based course introduces students to architectural tools of communication while presenting architecture as a field that is expansive—a field that engages not only with technical knowledge, but also with the making of public imaginaries, personal environments, cultural spatial aesthetics, and even the contested ground of the political, economic and social. The course is simultaneously an introduction to the techniques of representation that define the discipline of architecture and an opportunity to explore and question how architecture mediates the world. Students will learn and practice techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, mapping, 3D modeling and compositional image-making. While the focus will be on an array of forms of architectural drawing, these techniques will be carefully positioned against a survey of paradigmatic moments and themes in the history of architecture that will help situate the practice today. Throughout the term, our design work will be supplemented by readings and periodic research work, and we will situate this against regular lectures that will introduce you to the broader culture of architecture. The course will provide a foundation of concepts and skills necessary to make architecture legible and to convey a spatial argument through design. No prerequisites.

ARCH 130: Domestic Agents: Open Practices Workshop I

Professor: Betsy Clifton

In this half-semester design workshop, students will create ‘domestic agents’–spatial objects which question the norms and rituals of our everyday lives through design tools and inquisitive disruption. We will begin by reorienting our expectations of domestic spaces by considering the things around us and our relationships to them. We will encounter these against a series of case studies—architectural precedents and historical places—which may allow us to understand how societal expectations of domestic design have emerged and transformed. From there, we will seek to reimagine the home towards more inclusive, provocative and liberating futures. The course will privilege new family compositions, accommodating new social configurations, rather than our inherited one. We will design our ‘domestic agents’ using experimental digital drawing techniques to create our own visual language. This class meets for the first half of the semester. No prerequisites.

ARCH 222: An Atlas of Radical Ruralism: Hard Labor, Soft Space

Professor: Stephanie Kyuyoung Lee

This research and design studio will focus on rural approaches to social, racial, and economic liberation. Working collaboratively, we will create a global atlas of radical farming collectives to be later published as a zine. By looking at historical, fictional, and realized case studies, students will map out a spatial taxonomy of cooperatives, intentional communities, regenerative agriculture farms, and back-to-land initiatives. What does it mean to create an infrastructure of care, and systems of resilience within a capitalist landscape of production, extraction, and exploitation? In this course, we will construct a network of political ecologies, linking case studies like Freedom Farm Cooperative, Marinaleda, and Soul Fire Farm. Through seminars and workshops, students will learn to create and analyze each project through 2D and 3D drawings alongside diagramming and multimedia collaging. Through this collective process, students will articulate notions of “land” and “labor”, and pair them with new dialogues on how the rural countryside operates as a site for radical forms of collective living.  No Prerequisites. Please email Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco ([email protected]) for inquiries.

ARTH 2030: Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives Practicum

Professor: Anne Hunnell Chen

What silences do archaeological archives unintentionally preserve? In what ways do power and privilege influence the creation and shape of archaeological archives, and dictate who has access to them? How might new technologies help us begin to rectify inequities of access? Once called by its excavators the “Pompeii of the East,” the ancient archaeological site of Dura-Europos (Syria) preserves evidence of what everyday life was like in an ancient Roman city. The site is home to the earliest Christian church building yet found, the most elaborately decorated ancient synagogue known to date, and testifies to the ways in which ancient religions and cultures intermingled and inspired one another. Yet since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011, the site has been irreparably compromised for future archaeological exploration. More than ever, our knowledge and understanding of the site will depend almost entirely upon archival information collected in the course of archaeological excavations that took place 100 years ago when Syria was under French colonial occupation. In this hands-on practicum course focused on the case-study of this fascinating archaeological site, students will not only learn what we know of Dura-Europos as it was in antiquity, but will also think critically about issues central to the use and development of archival resources more generally. Coursework will center around firsthand engagement with data, artifacts, and archival materials from the site, and will allow students the opportunity to develop guided research projects that ultimately contribute toward the goal of improving the site’s accessibility and intelligibility to users worldwide. The methods and critical perspectives explored in this class will be particularly relevant to students interested in exploring careers in GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museum) fields. Class meetings will occur approximately eight times during the semester (precise meeting schedule to be set at the beginning of the semester).

ARTS 235: Introduction to Media

Professor: Krista Caballero

This course offers a foundation in media history and theory, with particular focus on how artists have experimented with emerging technologies and changing media landscapes in ways that both reflect and transform culture. We will consider old and new forms alike, from print media to social media, from the camera obscura to photography, from broadcast television to early net.art, and from the diorama to virtual reality, as we explore how media have continually constructed our perceptions of time, space, knowledge, and identity. We will read media theorists such as Walter Benjamin, Marshall McLuhan, Jessica Marie Johnson, Donna Haraway, Lev Manovich, Erkki Huhtamo, and Lisa Nakamura alongside examining the work of artists such as Nam June Paik, Stephanie Dinkins, Guillermo Goméz-Peña, Wendy Red Star, Ricardo Dominquez, Mary Flanagan, and Will Wilson. We will also spend hands-on time working creatively with media, in order to assess our own positions as producers as well as users and consumers of media. This course fulfills a requirement for the Experimental Humanities concentration

CMSC 141 B: Object-Oriented Programming

Professor: Robert McGrail

This course introduces students to the methodologies of object-oriented design and programming, which are used throughout the Computer Science curriculum. Students will learn how to move from informal problem statement, through increasingly precise problem specifications, to design and implementation of a solution for problems drawn from areas such as graphics, animation, simulation. Good programming and documentation habits are emphasized.

FILM 244: The Conversation

Professor: A. Sayeeda Moreno

Engaging and activating autobiographical and biographical methodology to collect, observe, and adapt dialogue, this live-action production class will investigate approaches to storytelling and the narrative form with a goal towards identifying the subtext within given dialogue scenes. Students will locate “the lie” in the spoken word and “the truth” through visual indicators. Reworking scenes over the course of a semester, students will discover how their filmmaking choices either support, undermine or contradict what their characters are saying. Students will consider the impact of screenwriting, casting, improvisational rehearsal techniques, actor and camera movement, camera placement, and editing on a particular scene to build observational cadence and highlight unspoken “truths.” This course fulfills a moderation/major requirement. Registration open to Sophomores and above.

FILM 371: Media in the Age of AI

Professor: Joshua Glick

This class explores the vibrant intersection between different forms of media and artificial intelligence (AI). Topics include deepfakes and disinformation, gaming and the metaverse, social media and networked activism, installation and public art, experimental film and Hollywood blockbusters. Students will learn the ways in which AI can be used for malicious purposes as well as to push aesthetic boundaries and to serve the civic good. Key projects range from the data art of the Refik Anadol studio to the online satire of Bill Posters to deepfakes used in the war in Ukraine. The course will introduce students to new tools and platforms and will involve experimenting with AI-enabled media, all the while reflecting on the ethical, social, and political ramifications of these technologies. This course fulfills a Film and Electronic Arts moderation requirement.

SPAN 354: True Fictions from Spain and Latin America

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

This interdisciplinary course will focus on some of the numerous literary, film and photography productions of the 20th and 21st centuries that seek to undermine the foundations of the split between fiction and reality, through old or new media. We will propose a possible archeology of autobiographical works with an emphasis on Spain, in conversation with Latin America, including Brazil. In this context, fiction will be understood as the lens through which the self – the author or the artist, the reader or the viewer – negotiates their place in the world. Some questions that will arise throughout the semester are: How does fiction operate within life? What are the limits of art and literature, in the so-called “post-truth” era? How does life interfere with fiction, politically? We will consider autofictional and testimonial works produced by writers, artists, and filmmakers such as Jorge Luis Borges, Clarice Lispector, Roberto Bolaño, Alicia Partnoy, Jorge Semprún, Paula Bonet, Miguel Ángel Hernández, Sergio Oksman, Joan Fontcuberta, Paula Bonet, Carla Simón, Marta Sanz, and Pedro Almodóvar, among others. An online Guest Creators Series will complement this class. Students’ final projects may take different forms, ranging from written research essays to podcasts, visual essays, and other artistic interventions. Conducted in Spanish. This is an OSUN class and is open to Bard students as well as students from multiple OSUN partner institutions.

WRIT 126: Poetics of Attention

Professor: Philip Pardi

Whether we train our gaze outward at the world around us or inward at worlds within, poets are called to pay attention in particular ways. In this class, we will consider attention as the first step of the creative process, and we will study and practice the seemingly simple act of attending to all that we encounter as we move through our days and (on a good day) make poems. While we will devote some time to revision, the focus of this workshop will be the fertile ground between immersive experience and early, generative, exploratory poetic composition. The longer Friday session will be spent writing together, taking short walks and excursions, sharing our work, and discussing readings related to the science and practice of attention; the one-hour Wednesday session will be devoted to a sustained exploration of a single poem. Special Note: To facilitate our experiment with attentiveness, class meetings and most of the assignments will occur completely offline (i.e. no phone, no laptop, no smartwatch). If you have any concerns about this (or any) aspect of the course format, please contact me before registration. All spaces are reserved for incoming first year and transfer students. Registration for this class will take place in August.

ARCH 111 BC: Unseen Services: Reimagining the Everyday

Professor: Betsy Clifton

During this studio-based course, students will learn to use architectural representation techniques to create a new vocabulary for reimagining the architecture of commonly shared, everyday services. Waiting rooms, walk-in clinics, dmv offices, bank lobbies, among other spaces have become commonplace and by extension, unquestioned and underutilized. Though often taken for granted as background spaces, we will come to understand how they are part of the construction of societal norms, and their potential to host unconvential forms of public life that we will explore and reimagine through this course. Using tools of digital drafting, site analysis, physical models, and experimental image making, students will interrogate and reimagine these everyday spaces in our built environment. Through research, discussion and design proposition, each student will rewrite the role of their selected space of everyday services and propose alternatives that speak to our evolving understanding of shared resources, policies, societal tendencies, and expectations. We will think of our sites of intervention as testing grounds for new social relations to emerge, using design to reposition these everyday services as crucial elements in a larger societal transformation. The studio will conclude by imagining the proposals as a collective set of new urban elements, repositioning our conversation as a negotiation between the unquestioned past and the multiple possible futures. No prerequisites.

ARCH 211: Little Blue Marble: Letters to the earth

Professor: Thena Tak

Through a series of carefully selected texts, this seminar focuses on building better relationships with our planet by engaging areas of discourse that actively and intimately connect us to the natural world.  In architecture, our relationship to the natural world has been framed through many lenses – most familiar is perhaps through the more clinical lens of technology and performance.  Little Blue Marble however, foregrounds empathy, attentiveness, and participation as ways to bring us in better communion with the earth and perhaps, this form of relation may allow for an alternative set of cultural and social practices within architecture that shift our discipline’s dominant modes of thinking and being.  A few key texts that will help guide this conversation include Robin Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass, Robert Macfarlane’s Underland, and Slow Spatial Reader: Chronicles of Radical Affection edited by Carolyn F. Strauss.  In addition to readings and discussions, Little Blue Marble will ask students to create letters to the earth throughout the term.  These letters will also take on varied expressions and forms through writing and ‘open’ drawing, i.e. a range of drawing forms, from digital to analogue methods, will be welcome.  The making of these letters will be opportunities for students to rethink language, representation, and storytelling as a way to help us build literacy with the more-than-human world. No prerequisites required. Please email Ross Exo Adams ([email protected]) for inquiries.

ARTH 129: Asian Art in the Global Maritime Trade, c. 1500-1800

Professor: Heeryoon Shin

This course will examine the global interconnections of art and material culture in the early modern period (c. 1500-1800) through networks of empires, missionaries, and long-distance trade. We will focus on the circulation of Asian objects across Asia, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the New World, and trace the ways in which their mobility led to new uses and meanings and contributed to the growth of a shared visual and material culture. Using examples drawn from the luxurious moving goods of the early modern period, including blue and white porcelain, lacquerware, textiles and ivory, we will explore techniques and production, trade and circulation, and histories of consumption, collecting and display. The course seeks to move beyond more conventional Eurocentric approaches of West looking East to better understand the complexity of global objects in the early modern world. Coursework includes exams, a paper, and a final group project.

ARTH 289: Rights and the Image

Professor: Susan Merriam

This course examines the relationship between visual culture and human rights. It considers a wide range of visual media (photography, painting, sculpture), as well as aspects of visuality (surveillance, profiling). We will use case studies ranging in time from the early modern period (practices in which the body was marked to measure criminality, for example), to the present day. Within this framework, we will study how aspects of visual culture have been used to advocate for human rights, as well as how images and visual regimes have been used to suppress human rights. An important part of the course will be to consider the role played by reception in shaping a discourse around human rights, visuality, and images. Subjects to be addressed include: the nature of evidence; documentation and witness; stereotyping; racial profiling; censorship; iconoclasm; surveillance; advocacy images; signs on the body; visibility and invisibility.

ARTH 316: Multi-Media Gothic

Professor: Katherine Boivin

Although scholarship on medieval art has often been separated by medium, Gothic church programs were actually multi-media spaces with meaning transcending the individual work of art.  This class, therefore, explores a wide range of artistic media, including stained glass, painting, sculpture, architecture, textiles, and metalwork, as they contributed to the dynamic space of the Gothic church.  In addition, it considers modern technologies for representing these complex programs, drawing parallels between the explosion of images in the Gothic era and the role of media today.  Structured around the investigation of case-study churches throughout western Europe—with a particular focus on France and Germany from the 13th through 15th centuries—this class will cover topics including architectural structuring of space, image placement, dramatic performances of the liturgy, the “economy of salvation,” and cultural notions of decorum.  Coursework includes weekly writing assignments, active in-class discussion, and a final 15-page research paper. AHVC distributions: Ancient/Europe

CMSC 141 A: Object-Oriented Programming

Professor: Keith O’Hara

This course introduces students to the methodologies of object-oriented design and programming, which are used throughout the Computer Science curriculum. Students will learn how to move from informal problem statement, through increasingly precise problem specifications, to design and implementation of a solution for problems drawn from areas such as graphics, animation, simulation. Good programming and documentation habits are emphasized.

FILM 221: Found Footage and Appropriation

Professor: Ben Coonley

This course surveys the history of appropriation in experimental media from the found footage, cut-up and collage films of the 1950’s through the Lettrists and Situationists and up to current artistic and activist production efforts such as culture jamming, game hacking, sampling, hoaxing, resistance, interference and tactical media intervention.  The spectrum of traditions which involve the strategic recontextualizing of educational, industrial and broadcast sources, projects that detourn official ‘given’ meaning, re-editing of outtakes, recycling of detritus, and a variety of works of piracy and parody which skew/subvert media codes will be examined for their contribution to the field.  Issues regarding gender, identity, media and net politics, technology, copyright and aesthetics will be addressed as raised by the work.  Students are required to produce their own work in video, gaming, installation, collage and/or audio through a series of assignments and a final project. This course fulfills a moderation/major requirement. Registration open to Sophomores and above.

FILM 256: Writing the Film

Professor: A. Sayeeda Moreno

An introductory writing course that looks at creative approaches to writing short films and dialogue scenes. There will be writing and research exercises, screenings, discussions, readings and script critiques. The course will focus on researching and developing ideas and structure for stories, building characters, poetic strategies and writing comedic, realistic and awkward romantic dialogue. This is an elective course for Film and Electronic Arts and does not fulfill moderation/major requirement.

LIT 2081: Mass Culture of Postwar Japan

Professor: Nathan Shockey

This course explores the literature, history, and media art of Japan since the Second World War. Beginning with the lean years of the American occupation of 1945 to 1952, we will trace through the high growth period of the 1960s and 1970s, the “bubble era” of the 1980s, and up through to the present moment. Along the way, we will examine radio broadcasts, television, popular magazines, manga/comics, film, fiction, theater, folk and pop music, animation, advertising, and contemporary multimedia art. Throughout, the focus will be on works of “low brow” and “middle brow” culture that structure the experience of everyday life, as we think about the transformation of forms of narrative in tandem with different forms of popular media. Among other topics, we will consider mass entertainment, the emperor system, the student movement and its failure, changing dynamics of sex, gender, and family, “Americanization,” the mythos of the middle class and the rise of economic precarity, immigration, and climate disaster.  In addition, we will think about changing images of Japan in American media and the ways in which the mass culture of postwar Japan has shaped global pop cultural currents in the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

THTR 369: Digital Theaters

Professor: Miriam Felton-Dansky

What happens when theater goes digital? This Bard network course addresses how theater and performance, as live embodied practices and forms of communal encounter, have permanently shifted during the COVID-19 pandemic, and celebrates new forms of performance that have emerged. We will investigate dispersed digital formats – WhatsApp and instagram performances, VR/AR-experiences, Zoom theater – using case studies from Berlin, Vienna/Budapest, Bogota, London, Johannesburg and Annandale/New York City. Digital Theaters will examine how the performing arts have fundamentally altered their reach, audience, institutional structures, and the quality of social encounter by going digital and what that suggests about the future make-up of the performing arts sector. This is an OSUN Network Collaborative Course taught in partnership courses on Digital Theatres offered at (list of all partner institutions) Universidad de los Andes, Bard College Berlin, Birkbeck, CEU, and University of the Witwatersrand.  As an OSUN collaborative network course, we will attend a digital theater festival based in South Africa and attend workshops with classmates in Berlin and London, while also functioning as an independent classroom community to build digital theater projects and investigate the stakes of the digital theater encounter in our own performance spaces and viewing lives. Assessment will be based on critical responses, creative digital projects, and participation.

Spring 2022

ARCH 111: Spatial Subjects: Architecture as Media

Professor: Michael Robinson Cohen

This studio-based course introduces students to architectural tools of communication while presenting architecture as a field that is expansive—a field that engages not only with technical knowledge, but also with the making of public imaginaries, personal environments, cultural spatial aesthetics, and even the contested ground of the political, economic and social. The course is simultaneously an introduction to the techniques of representation that define the discipline of architecture and an opportunity to explore and question how architecture mediates the world. Students will learn and practice techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, mapping, 3D modeling and compositional image-making. While the focus will be on an array of forms of architectural drawing, these techniques will be carefully positioned against a survey of paradigmatic moments and themes in the history of architecture that will help situate the practice today. Throughout the term, our design work will be supplemented by readings and periodic research work, and we will situate this against regular lectures that will introduce you to the broader culture of architecture. The course will provide a foundation of concepts and skills necessary to make architecture legible and to convey a spatial argument through design. NO PREREQUISITES REQUIRED. For inquiries, contact Ross Adams, [email protected]

ARCH 221: Institutions for Planetary Fictions

Professor: Ross Adams

What can we learn when we approach architecture as a ‘planetary’ practice? Aside from opening up new scales of design or shifting our focus to ecological concerns, how does this perspective fundamentally alter what it means to practice architecture? This design studio-seminar is an effort to introduce architecture as a worldmaking practice by acknowledging its inherently fictional capacity to imagine ways of being—modes of existence that depart from our present world. Unsettling notions that have underpinned architectural thought for centuries—private property, territory, racial capitalism, terra nullius—the aim of this studio-seminar is to approach architecture from alternate sites of inquiry that reveal it to be, more than anything else, a technology that mediates our relation to the world. Our work will be to design institutions for planetary fictions, architectural interventions that seek to instigate public imaginaries around sites of common existence—air, water, soil, forest, clouds—as a basis to exploit the narrative and fictional capacity of architecture at a moment of climatic and cultural transformation. We will develop our planetary fictions through a network of readings, films, discussions, collective design work, image making and invited guest lectures. Prerequisite for this course is ARCH 111 or permission from the professor. Please note studio work involves weekly assignments and, when possible, extracurricular events, such as field trips and studio-related talks. Computers with required software will be provided by the College.

ARCH 322: Lexicon of Everyday Futures

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Where is the line between a presentation of proposed use (built space) and a presentation of potential use (exhibited space)? This design studio-seminar collapses the distinction between curating and creating by designing an exhibition, as well as the objects to be exhibited. By constructing our own vocabulary of contexts, codes, systems, and details of architecture, we will examine components of built space at multiple scales through a series of evolving models. We will reframe the institutional space of the gallery as a site of intellectual and creative production itself, and collapse the boundary between specified collections and our everyday context.  Through a series of experimental workshops our focus will be on ubiquitous elements of space which inhabit most projects, but whose agency is usually anonymous (fire codes, mechanical systems, utilities, for example). Over the semester, we will iterate scaled physical models and interchange their roles between gallery and architectural mock up, speculative object and utilitarian element. The semester will culminate in a built exhibition which intends to open up architecture as a future practice that can more readily accept itself as a collective/collected environment. Prerequisites ARCH 111 or permission from the program. Email [email protected]

ARTH 107: Arts of Korea

Professor: Heeryoon Shin

This interdisciplinary course explores the history of Korea from ancient times to the present through the lens of art and culture. We will examine intersections of art, religion, and politics in Korea, as well as Korea’s interactions with the larger region of East Asia and beyond. The first half of the course is dedicated to canonical artworks from premodern Korea, designated as national “treasures” by the South Korean government; the second half will shift the focus to the modern and contemporary period to critically examine how such a “canon” and dominant narratives of Korean art history were formulated. Topics include Buddhist art and ritual; landscape and travel; material culture and collecting; female artists and representations of women; visual culture and politics under the Japanese colonial rule; monuments and anti-monuments; art as political activism; and contemporary Korean art within the global art world. Coursework includes exams, weekly responses on Brightspace, a 3-4 page paper, and a digital group project.

ARTH 213: Power, Piety, and Pleasure: The Art of the Mughal Empire

Professor: Heeryoon Shin

This course explores the art and architecture of the Mughal Empire (1526–1858), one of the most powerful and opulent empires in the early modern world. As prolific patrons and collectors of art, the Mughals drew upon Persian, Indian, and European sources to create new and distinctive forms of art and architecture. The rich artistic production of the Mughals and the regional courts of India include imperial palaces and tombs such as the Taj Mahal, pleasure gardens, temples and shrines at pilgrimage centers, illuminated manuscripts, lavish albums of painting and calligraphy, and embroidered, painted, and printed textiles. Together we will explore their political, social, and cultural contexts. A special emphasis will be placed on the cross-cultural interactions at the Mughal court initiated by diplomacy, trade, and religion, and how the Mughals positioned themselves globally through art and architecture. Coursework includes exams, midterm paper, and a group digital project.

ARTH 315: Material Worlds and Social Identities

Professor: Julia Rosenbaum

How does the world of interior spaces, their furnishings and decorative objects, tell us stories, assert values, project identities? Through an engaged-learning experience with three early twentieth-century National Park sites in the Hudson Valley—the Vanderbilt Mansion, the Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Eleanor Roosevelt’s Home at Val-Kill—this seminar explores both the relationship between objects and identities and issues of consumption and appearance. The course will focus on American decorative arts from the late nineteenth into the twentieth century addressing theories about the purpose, meaning, and value of design and decoration as well as key movements, designers, and artists. Visiting the sites and collections regularly, we will combine the scholarly study of aesthetic ideals and social practices with hands-on examination of specific objects in the museum collections.  Key themes to be addressed include gender and the body; consumer capitalism and labor; political/class/queer identities; ethics and aesthetics.

ARTS 309: Vibrant Matter: Archives of Contestation and Reanimation

Professor: Krista Caballero

This advanced course will investigate the “aliveness” of archives and collections and what political theorist Jane Bennett describes as vibrant matter – that capacity of things “to act as quasi agents or forces with trajectories, propensities, or tendencies of their own.” We will take up this idea of archives and collections as a kind of lively, vibrant matter while simultaneously exploring ways they reveal which bodies and whose histories matter. Students will work in the media of their choosing to create artwork utilizing archives as a tool for both contestation and reanimation. Alongside this creative making will be an examination of key theoretical texts with emphasis on those that center indigenous scholarship and BIPOC artists. As such, course readings, active participation in class discussions as well as group critique will be key to our investigation. Topics will include: collective memory and erasure; repatriation and decolonization; fragmentation and digital accumulation; the collection and indexing of other species; agency and control. An integral component of this course will also include site-visits to both on and off-campus archives such as the Associated Press in NYC, Hudsonia at the Bard College Field Station, and local historical societies. Prerequisite: at least one 200 level practicing arts course.

AS 221: Origins of the “Black Cookout”

Professor: Joshua Livingston

Cookouts are paramount in the Black American community. The cookout has always been an event that allows “folx” to celebrate culture, fellowship with new and old faces, sing, dance, play games and generally preserve the legacy of ancestors. The practice also has had lasting economic impact for entrepreneurs in the Black community. What is notable however is that the root of the cookout—the barbecuing itself—largely came Native American community’s practices of pit cooking, and in some part through the complex relationship between African Americans and Native Americans. This class will be centered around the book Black Smoke: African Americans and the United States of Barbecue— among other important texts, video, audio and film—to explore the main elements that have aided in shaping this pivotal form of placemaking among Black people. Goals of the course are: To critically examine the “human” design of placemaking and the important elements of fellowship; To explore the complex relationship between Black peoples and Native American tribes that brought about the art of barbecuing as a cultural trapping; To unpack and understand the economic implications of barbecue in the Black community; To share and learn about Black cookout cultural norms, and practices; To share and learn about fellow students’ community practices, and; To utilize campus resources, insights from Native American community members, and other wider Hudson Valley community resources. Along the way, students in the course will work on the design and construction of a custom barbeque pit—likened after traditional Native American design— to create a lasting “place” and cultural practice on campus. The course will culminate in students throwing a cookout in the spirit of the Black community that in turn pays homage to the rich history of indigenous and Black peoples. This course has no prerequisites and is open to students at all levels.

FILM 312: Advanced Screenwriting

Professor: A. Sayeeda Moreno

An intensive screenwriting workshop designed specifically for someone who plans to make a film for moderation or senior project. In a seminar setting we will work on multiple drafts, at times utilizing actors to workshop the scripts. The goal will be to develop a concise and polished short screenplay ready for production. The class will engage in poetic strategies and writing assignments forming the bedrock for vigorous analysis as students workshop their scripts. This course will require extensive outside research, and a commitment to a rigorous writing and rewriting process. Students must currently have a short script in progress that they intend to workshop during the semester.  Pre-requisite: Film 256 – Writing the Film or Film 229 – Character & Story, or the successful completion of a sophomore level production class. Non-majors can participate but must email the professor to highlight their screenwriting experience prior to registration for approval. ALL prospective students must email [email protected] one paragraph (no more than 200 words) with a short synopsis of the screenplay you want to workshop in class, and explain your interest in taking this course.

CMSC 336: Games Systems: Platforms, Programs & Power

Professor: Keith O’Hara

This course studies games using the lens of computing systems; exploring the design and implementation of historic and modern computing systems for games, including the hardware, software, and their interface. For more than the sake of automation or communication, games have exploited a unique affordance of computers, the ability to simulate & ask questions of “what if?”  This course will go beyond only creating games, and will challenge students to critically reflect on how the architectural and programming choices in games can encode inequality and particular worldviews procedurally, as much as other game elements like visuals, audio and narrative. We will cover the low-level aspects of games platforms: graphics programming, networking, and peripherals; mid-level concerns: software engineering, design patterns, concurrency, and interfaces; and higher-level issues related to emulation, ethics, platform studies and media archaeology. Prerequisites: CMSC 201, Data Structures.

HIST 334: Finnegans Wake: Vico, Joyce, and the New Science

Professor: Gregory Moynahan

In 1725, Giambattista Vico presented to the world a “New Science” of poetic imagination that was intended as a point-by-point re-contextualization of the already established foundations of the natural sciences of Rene Descartes and Francis Bacon. In 1939, with much of the world enveloped in fascism and on the verge of a new technological war, James Joyce presented an immersive demonstration of Vico’s science in Finnegans Wake. By turns confusing, hilarious, and profound, Joyce’s “vicociclometer” sought to provide a reorientation in myth and history of the relation of ancient and modern life, religion, and politics. In this course, we will use the “exception” provided by both texts to look at the norms of modern intellectual history, using selections in their context to reconsider the background assumptions of modern societies and their political implications. Central issues will include the destruction of oral and traditional cultures (and peoples) by print based-civilizations, the function of science and myth in the organization of modern life (particularly as mediated by law), the definition of individuals and collectives by narrative and institutional form, the relation of written history to power, the function of technological media in politics, and the place of complexity in aesthetics and life. A central theme will be the history of the book as it develops among other media technologies, which we will thematize through the use of Bard’s collection of the facsimiles of Joyce’s voluminous notecards on Finnegans Wake (the so-called “Buffalo Manuscripts”). The only prerequisite for this class is to have read Joyce’s Ulysses, which will be used as a sort of methodological tool-kit and skeleton key for understanding Finnegans Wake.

LIT 2084: Literature of Experiment

Professor: Daniel Williams

What is the relationship of literary writing to scientific experiment? How do literary authors and movements characterize themselves (or become characterized) as experimental? This course surveys a range of texts from the 19th century to the present that engage with experiment in terms of content, form, or shape. We will read texts that represent scientific praxis alongside texts that deploy literary improvisation. We will consider what commonalities exist across experimental and avant-garde modes: the commitment to linguistic innovation and metatextual reflection; the prevalence of manifestos and movements; the lure of technology and intermediality. Throughout we will also consider experimentalism as both value and vice in critical method, from deconstruction to the digital humanities. In keeping with our theme, class meetings and assignments will frequently adopt improvisational practices—from automatic writing to chance-driven composition to quantitative analysis. Authors might include Hopkins, Mallarmé, Kafka, Woolf, Stein, Breton, Calvino, Pynchon, Ashbery, Hejinian, Davis, and Saunders.

LIT 3432: Literature in the Digital Age

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

The proliferation of digital information and communications technologies over the past half-century has transformed and continues to transform how literary works are composed, produced, circulated, read, and interpreted. What new forms and practices of reading and writing have emerged in this late age of typography? What is the nature, extent, and significance of these changes? This course re-assesses questions and themes long central to the study of literature including: archiving, authorship, canon formation, circulation, materiality, narrative, poetics, and readership, among others. The course aims to understand our present moment in historical context by pairing contemporary works with texts from and about other shifts in media from the ancient world to the modern era. Readings include Augustine, Borges, Eisenstein, Flusser, Hayles, Jenkins, and Plato, as well as works of HTML/hypertext fiction, Twitter literature, online poetry, fan fiction, and so on. Coursework will include online and off-line activities in addition to traditional papers. Recommended for current and potential Experimental Humanities concentrators. This will be an OSUN course, with half of the spots reserved for Annandale students who have completed two or more years of college. Please contact the professor prior to registration.

ARCH 130: Perspectival speculations: Open Practices Workshop I

Professor: Betsy Clifton

This one-month workshop will run from February 2nd to March 2nd and introduces drawing techniques to investigate the inherited conditions of our constructed environment and to speculate on its future. Throughout the workshop, students will create a full-scale perspectival drawing to reveal aspects of our environment that have come together not by intention, but by chance. With this, we will construct an alternative architectural language which measures, recomposes, and acknowledges our built environment as an accumulation of codes, patents, systems and legal frameworks, in service of proposing new opportunities. Each student will isolate an intersection of built space around campus (mechanical, structural, material, open to closed, corner, hallway, gap, etc.) and productively work to collapse its boundaries. Through readings (both from architecture and our own interpretations) and technical documents such as building codes and patents, students will name their constructed context, and draw over and around the existing site as a means to transform it. This class invites students from all backgrounds to engage with the fundamentals of architectural language. The course will conduct a series of drawing workshops and short exercises testing physical and conceptual space through digital 2D/3D modelling, drafting and image collaging. The final installation of the course will result in full scale perspective drawings and collages installed on the sites around campus. NO PREREQUISITES REQUIRED. For inquiries, contact Ivonne Santoyo Orozco, [email protected]

ARCH 240: Architectural Entanglements with Labor

Professor: Ivonne Santoyo Orozco  

Architecture is both the product of labor and the organizer of its relations, yet often these issues remain overshadowed by aesthetic considerations and the broader discourse of design. In shifting the question of labor in architecture to the foreground, this course invites students to reflect on the spatio-political role architecture has played in mediating bodies, work and capital. To do this, we will analyze contemporary transformations to paradigmatic sites of work (offices, factories, tech campuses), as well as the many spaces that have been produced to feed architectural production and its endless cycles of extraction (camps, slums, mines), or the architecture that reproduces forms of maintenance (houses, squares, resorts). We will analyze a diverse set of contemporary and historical architectural precedents against a heterogenous landscape of voices from Maurizio Lazzarato, Silvia Federici, Mierle Laderman Ukeless, David Harvey, Peggy Deamer, Mabel O. Wilson, among others. The course will unfold in a combination of lectures and seminars. There are no exams but students are expected to complete weekly assignments, a midterm and a final project. This is an OSUN class and is open to Bard students as well as students from multiple OSUN partner institutions.

ART 126: ED Mapping: You Are Here

Professor: Ellen Driscoll

Maps have been dynamic visual and conceptual inspiration for many artists.  In this class, we will work with drawing and sculptural installation to investigate the translation of scale and data to abstraction inherent in the art of mapping.  We will study a range of contemporary artists around the world for whom maps are central to their artistic practice. We will study the visual strategies, content, and context of maps in these artist’s works. We will also look at a rich range of historical maps from Polynesian navigation charts to the soundless silk maps of World War 2. The work of Katherine Harmon, Rebecca Solnit, W.E. B. DuBois, the counter-maps of the Black Panthers, and the Indigenous Mapping Collective, among others will form foundations for our research and artistic exploration. The 1000-acre campus of Bard will be our laboratory for focused research and for generating three visual projects. This is an Engaged Liberal Arts & Sciences (ELAS) course. In this course you will be given the opportunity to bridge theory to practice while engaging a community of interest throughout the semester. A significant portion of ELAS learning takes place outside of the classroom: students learn through engagement with different geographies, organizations, and programs in the surrounding communities or in collaboration with partners from Bard’s national and international networks. To learn more please click here.

ARTH 204: Art and Experiment in Early Modern Europe

Professor: Susan Merriam

This course is a meditation on the meaning and histories of artistic experimentation in early modern Europe (1500-1800). At this time, art and science were often intricately connected, and artists took for granted the notion that they could manipulate and experiment with materials (oil paint for example), techniques (such as printmaking), and conceptual approaches to art making. Some of the areas we will examine include anatomical studies, optical experiments, and the use of materials and techniques. Questions we will pursue: What is meant by “visual experiment”?  How might artistic failure be generative? How did artistic experiments shape practices we would now consider to be located solely in the realm of science, such as anatomical study? What is the relationship between experiment and risk?  How might we compare artistic experiments in the early modern period to those undertaken in our own? As we study artistic experiment, we will create our own visual experiments using both old and new technologies. A highlight will be working with a life-sized camera obscura. This course satisfies the Experimental Humanities core course requirement for “History of the Experiment.”

ARTH 234: Of Utopias

Professor: Olga Touloumi

This class explores the theory and practice of utopia from an architectural perspective. Utopias have always been imagined through a variety of mediums like the manifesto, the blueprint, and visual and performing arts. The course investigates the manifold scales of utopian articulation and realization, from compound communities to projects designing the entire globe, and from unrealized proposals to intentional communes of co-liberation. The class will use the concept of utopia to map out the ways that men and women have sought to transform the spatial, psychic, and social landscapes they inhabited. What can we learn from the utopian imperative? What is the shape of utopia? How should we understand the relationship between thought and practice, hope and disappointment, idealism and realism? Projects presented range from early industrial colonies, socialist utopias, Christian communities, and anarchist utopias to shopping malls, factories, and afrofuturism. The projects will be discussed in conjunction with major texts by Sir Thomas More, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Karl Marx, Robert Owen, Louis Marin, to name a few. Course requirements involve short assignments, class presentations and a final paper. AHVC Requirements: Modern, Americas

ARTS 208: Understanding Social Media

Professor: Fahmid Haq  

Doing social media projects practically and analyzing their role critically are two main objectives of the course. This course will raise some critical question that evolve around social media which will include – surveillance and privacy, labor, big data, misinformation, cyborg and cyberfeminism. Topics will include the socio-historical perspectives regarding technology and society, the nature and characteristics of different social media such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, snapchat and more, big data capitalism and imperialism, civic engagement through digital platforms, mainstream media’s compelling realities to be more ‘social’, misinformation, racism and right-wing authoritarianism in social media, the role of social media influencers, branding and social media marketing and an exploration for a true social media. The course will draw from a broad range of social theory including communication and cultural theories, political economy and media anthropology to critically evaluate the impact of social media on human relationships, activism, branding, politics, news production and dissemination and identity formation. Theoretical notions such as hyperreality by Jean Baudrillard, network society by Manuel Castells and digital labor by Christian Fuchs will be discussed in the class. As ‘prosumers’, students will create social media projects and analyze some trendy cases evident in different platforms.

ARTS 314: Beyond Bollywood: Mapping South Asian Cinema

Professor: Fahmid Haq

South Asian Cinema is nearly synonymous with Indian Cinema to the international audience, though other South Asian countries such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal have developed strong film cultures too. The objective of the course is mapping the cine profile of the South Asian countries and examining Bollywood’s hegemonic presence in the region. This seminar course will study some cases across a range of South Asian Cinema cultures by exploring their common as well as different cultural backgrounds, historiography, and sociopolitical realities. Topics will include both historical and contemporary cinematic practices in South Asian countries such as the Partition of India in South Asian Cinema, cinematic representation of the Liberation War of Bangladesh, Bollywood’s cultural influence in other South Asian countries, portrayal of Kashmir in Indian cinema, diasporic Indian cinema and ‘other Bollywood’ cinema. Films by directors such as Raj Kapoor, Satyajit Ray, Ritwik Ghatak and Anurag Kashyap from India, Zahir Raihan, Alamgir Kabir and Tareque Masud from Bangladesh, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and Shoaib Mansoor from Pakistan, and Lester James Peries from Sri Lanka will be studied closely. This is an OSUN class and is open to Bard students as well as students from multiple OSUN partner institutions.

CMSC 141: Object-Oriented Programming

Professor: Kerri-Ann Norton

This course introduces students to the methodologies of object-oriented design and programming, which are used throughout the Computer Science curriculum. Students will learn how to move from informal problem statement, through increasingly precise problem specifications, to design and implementation of a solution for problems drawn from areas such as graphics, animation, simulation. Good programming and documentation habits are emphasized.

FILM 203: Performance and Video

Professor: Laura Parnes

This course explores intersections of video and performance art. Course participants develop strategies for exploiting video’s most fundamental property: its ability to reproduce a stream of real-time synchronized images and sounds. How does video technology mediate between on-screen performer and audience? How can artists interested in creating critical and self-reflexive media respond to video’s immediacy and “liveness”? How can performance artists use video playback devices, displays, projectors, interactive elements, and live video mixing software to shape and enhance live art? The first half of the course concentrates on the creation of performance “tapes” (or tape-less video recordings) and the history of experimental video focused on performance for the camera. The second half of the course concentrates on the use of video as a central component within live performance art. We will read about and carry on a sustained conversation about the cultural and psychological impact of video technology on subjectivity and conceptions of the artist as “medium.” Readings on and viewings of work by Marina Abramović, Vito Acconci, Laurie Anderson, Trisha Baga, John Baldessari, Paul Chan, Patty Chang, Chris Burden, Coco Fusco,  Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Wynne Greenwood, Nancy Holt, Joan Jonas, Miranda July, Mike Kelley, George Kuchar, Kalup Linzy, Tata Mateik, Shana Moulton, Jayson Musson, Bruce Nauman, Nam Jun Paik, Sondra Perry, Walid Raad, Martha Rosler, Jacolby Satterwhite, Michael Smith, Ryan Trecartin, Andy Warhol, William Wegman, among others. This production course fulfills a moderation/major requirement.

HIST 298: Making Silicon Valley Histories

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

This course is an introduction to the history of Silicon Valley. Moving chronologically between 1945 and the present, we will study the history of this significant region, and stories about the area’s technology industry. With a focus on social justice,  this class will explore race and ethnicity, gender and sexuality, health and disability, immigration and labor, and diversity and inequality in technology and the modern United States. In this class, students will experience first-hand the history of the early Silicon Valley through a wealth of primary sources, such as newspaper accounts, oral histories, photographic images, government documents, corporate reports, advertisements and business journalism, and more. We will also engage an exciting and emerging secondary literature.

LIT 263: What is a Character?

Professor: Adhaar Desai

We are often drawn to characters more than anything else in our encounters with books, plays, or movies. This happens despite our knowing that characters remain exactly what their name implies: trapped by printed letters, scriptedness, or the limits of a screen. Characters are always mediated, but they can also show us how concepts like humanity and personhood depend on and contend with the media humans use to share ideas. In this course, we will study the history of characters in western fiction to learn how archetypes, racial and gendered stereotypes, historical or geographical settings, and the capabilities of different media technologies shape our encounters with them. We will also explore different ways of “reading” characters by thinking about how computer algorithms might understand something as supposedly complex as an individual’s personality. Primary texts will include Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Stevenson’s Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde, Parks’s The America Play, Cusk’s Outline, and short stories by Toni Morrison, Kate Chopin, and others. We will also consider films, television shows, and video games. Students will have the opportunity to become characters in class debates, discuss fan fiction, and experiment with how to translate characters between media as we engage in analytical, theoretical, and creative work throughout the term.

MUS 262: Topics in Music Software: Introduction to Max/Msp

Professor: Matthew Sargent

This course will introduce students to Max/Msp, an object-oriented programming environment for real-time audio processing, digital synthesis, algorithmic composition, data sonification, and more. Students will learn fundamental concepts of digital audio and computer programming while engaging in creative projects and in-class performances. The class will include examples of Max patches found in major works of 20/21st century electroacoustic music and sound art repertoire. The course will also explore connectivity between Max and other software applications, including Max4Live. The course will conclude with a final project. Introduction to Electronic Music, or a 100-level course in Computer Science, is recommended as a prerequisite.

REL 211: Digital Dharma: Buddhism and New Media

Professor: Dominique Townsend

Many high profile figures associated with world religions, such as the Dalai Lama and Pope Francis, have adopted social media to communicate with followers, spread philosophical views, and offer spiritual instructions. In the Buddhist world, teachers use digital technologies to reach huge followings and to disseminate Buddhist texts, practical and ethical instructions, and iconic Buddhist imagery to students across the globe. The engagement with digital media has radically increased due to the pandemic as Buddhist communities have sought ways to convene safely. How have digital technologies reshaped how Buddhist teachers instruct students and attract new disciples, especially since the arrival of COVID-19? How do platforms such Twitter and WeChat constrict or alter Buddhist teacher’s messages, and how do they allow for an unprecedented global reach? What are the social and political risks and benefits of digital expressions of Buddhism? In this course students will analyze the function of digital Buddhist texts and images and investigate the use of digital media as a means for Buddhist teachers and communities to reach large and distant audiences. Recent digital trends will be considered in multiple cultural, political, and historical contexts that takes into account a diversity of Buddhist practices and pedagogies.

SPAN 301: Introduction to Spanish Literature in conversation with the Visual Arts

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

This course explores some of the major literary works produced on the Iberian Peninsula from the Middle Ages to the present day. Students will become familiar with the general contours of Spanish history as they study in depth a selected number of masterpieces, including works by Miguel de Cervantes, Calderón de la Barca, Teresa de Jesús, Cadalso, Larra, Galdós, Emilia Pardo Bazán, Unamuno, Lorca, and Carmen Laforet. The course will be organized around three thematic modules: Spanish culture’s engagement with notions of purity and pollution; the emergence and evolution of the first person singular in Spanish literature; and the representations of the country and the city, the center and the periphery. In each module we will undertake a survey of relevant literature occasionally put in conversation with the visual arts. Conducted in Spanish.

Core Courses

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Introduction to Media

Taught by various EH faculty across divisions.

Typically offered in Fall semester

Introduction to Media provides a foundation in media history and theory. It also explores how students can use aspects of traditional humanistic approaches (e.g., close reading and visual literacy) to critically engage with texts of all kinds. Students consider how material conditions shape discourse and assess their own positions as consumers and producers of media.

 

History of Experiment

Taught by various EH faculty across divisions.

Typically offered in Spring semester

History of Experiment considers major figures and experimental approaches, such as poetics, the philosophical thought experiment, and the scientific method, and challenges students to reconsider existing categories of and approaches to knowledge formation.

 

Technology, Humanity & the Future

Taught by various EHCN faculty across the OSUN network.

In both theory and practice, this course is designed to explore the intersections of technology, justice, and creative practice. One of our central lines of inquiry will be: How might technology be utilized in ethical and just ways to (re)imagine our human cultural practices and resulting ecological impact? In approaching this question, we will consider ways that artists and community activists are pushing boundaries to both critically and creatively address the future of technology and issues relating to identity and privacy, data sovereignty and governance, e-waste and rare earth mining, deepfakes and AI. Key theoretical texts from scholars such as Felix Guattari, Safiya Umoja Noble, Hito Steyerl, Gregory Cajete, Shannon Mattern, Lev Manovich, and Lisa Nakamura will ground our exploration alongside a series of guest lectures by a diverse group of artists, scholars and activists across the OSUN network. Through readings and discussions, this course will explore technology across historical periods and how past forms help shape our current moment. Students will also work intensively to develop creative projects that blur boundaries between physical and digital media, integrate field-based research, and experiment with interdisciplinary practices of making.

American and Indigenous Studies

LIT/AS/WRIT 379 Reading Emily Dickinson

Professor: Philip Pardi

Spring 2024

Although frequently depicted as living and working in isolation, Emily Dickinson was vitally connected to the world around her. In this class, we will immerse ourselves in Dickinson’s writing, in the writers she was drawn to, and in the historical moment of which she was a part. By exploring how her work participates in the poetic practices and intellectual currents of her day, we will sharpen our understanding of her unique, even radical, contribution to American poetry. Along the way, we will consider Dickinson as a reader (of Emerson, the Psalms, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, and periodicals delivering news of the Civil War, for example) as well as her influence on poets who have read and responded to her (Adrienne Rich, Lorine Niedecker, Camille Dungy, and Rae Armantrout, to name a few). And as we read our way into Dickinson’s world, we will also take up the question of reading itself: What does it mean to read a poem “closely” and what kind(s) of attention does the act of reading require of us? What happens in the brain when we read and how can we enrich or deepen the experience? Note on Course Format: This course meets once a week for six hours. At the beginning of each session, we will turn off our phones (and laptops, smart watches, etc.) and be completely offline for the duration of the class. This will allow us to explore our existing habits as readers and to experiment with new ones. (Students who have concerns about the format of the course should contact the professor before registration.)

AS/CC 117 A: RETHINKING PLACE: ART/SCIENCE COLLABORATION

Professors: Elias Dueker and Krista Caballero

Fall 2023

We generally assume maps are objective, accurate representations of data and the world around us when, in fact, they depict the knowledge, experience, and values of the humans who draft them. This practicum section brings together the arts and sciences to better understand changes in water, climate and communities via creative, hands-on projects focused on the Saw Kill watershed, which encompasses the Bard campus. We will study radical cartography practices as a method for environmental advocacy alongside artistic and counter-mapping approaches that experiment with ways we might communicate scientific and humanistic knowledge to a wider audience. Throughout the semester, specific projects will be created in collaboration with the GIS for Environmental Justice course.

AS/CC 117 B: RACE AND PLACE: AFRICAN AMERICAN-INDIGENOUS STUDIES APPROACHES

Professors: Christian Crouch and Peter L’Official

Fall 2023

“The waters that are never still” flow past rural and urban communities alike that bear witness – or silence – in varying degrees the long-term presence of individuals of Indigenous and African descent in this region. This section uses an interdisciplinary approach to allow students to see how artists, critics, writers, and activists have approached ideas of belonging, transformation (willing or unwilling), removal, and race politics in the Mahicantuck Valley and beyond. Race and Place will re-read signal works of American literature alongside urban planning documents and historical works, in order to trace back the often-fraught relationship between people of color and the often-unseen forces that structure the landscapes that they call home. Historical context for case studies will supplement first-hand sources and literary works to provide students a grounding in the formations of removal policies, racial capitalism, and predatory real estate. Texts include writings by Hendrick Aupaumut, W.E.B Du Bois, Toni Morrison, Brandon Hobson, Mat Johnson, Zora Neale Hurston, Louise Erdrich, Alaina Roberts. Possible additional course place work may include visits to the Du Bois homestead site, Forge Project, and Winold Reiss’s studio and archive.

AS/CC 117 C: RETHINKING PLACE: METHODS AND THEORY

Professors: Margaux Kristjansson and Luis Chavez

Fall 2023

This section is an introduction to advanced embodied and place-based methodologies in Indigenous Studies. It will focus on Indigenous performance and sensory modes of knowing; along with exploring anticolonial queer and feminist modes of knowledge production. Texts from: Linda Tuhiwai-Smith, Chris Anderson, Maggie Walter, Jessica Berrea, Zoila Mendoza, Billy-Ray Belcourt, Eve Tuck, Lisa Stevenson, Beverly Diamond, Audra Simpson, Mikinaak Migwans and Oyeronke Oyewumi.

AS/ARTH 225 Art and Environment: Perspectives on Land, Landscape, and Ecology

Professor: Julia Rosenbaum

Fall 2023

If we want to understand ourselves, we would do well to take a searching look at our landscapes. –D.W. Meinig (paraphrasing Peirce Lewis), The Interpretation of Ordinary Landscapes This course explores the relationship between the natural world and United States culture, considering specifically the visual expression of that relationship: How have Americans imagined “nature” and represented it? How have concepts of land and landscape shaped perceptions about social order, identity, and sustainability? The course provides both a historical framework for thinking about these questions as well as a contemporary perspective, particularly in the context of a potential new era known as the “Anthropocene.” Scholars in the sciences and the humanities increasingly use this term to describe the current global impact of human-dominated ecosystems. Over the semester we will examine diverse imagery, from mound-building to mapmaking to landscape painting, and explore multiple perspectives, from indigenous practices to visual tools of settler colonialism to environmental art activism. The class will engage both past and present ideas and debates about the natural world through visual and textual analysis, writing exercises, local sites, and individual research. AHVC distribution: 1500-present, Americas

AS/HIST 180: TECHNOLOGY, LABOR, CAPITALISM

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Fall 2023

Artificial intelligence and the knowledge economy. Computation and Credit. Satellites and social media. Philanthropy and factory flight. “Doing what you love” and digital activism. Climate change and corporate consolidation. This class will explore changes in capitalism, technology, and labor in the twentieth- and twenty-first century United States. We will learn how ideas about work and technology have evolved over time, and how these dynamic ideas and evolving tools have shaped the present day.

AS/LIT 3233: AMERICAN STUDY

Professor: Peter L’Official

Fall 2023

Calderwood Seminar: “Writing about music is like dancing about architecture.” Attributed at times to Laurie Anderson, David Byrne, Elvis Costello, Miles Davis, and Thelonious Monk, among many others, this irresistible aphorism suggests the myriad difficulties of writing arts and cultural criticism—not to mention of writing in general. What does it mean to write about American culture? What is culture? What is America, for that matter? What might it mean to “study” America’s cultural products, aesthetics, and history, and how can we translate our experiences of these into critical argument or reflection? The title of New York Times film critic A.O. Scott’s book is Better Living Through Criticism. In this class, we will attempt to understand American culture and life by practicing the art of criticism. This course examines various forms of culture writing that interrogates and illuminates works in American literature, art, film, music, and, yes, architecture, space, and the city. For this class, “study” will constitute a collective, investigative, and interdisciplinary practice. This is a Calderwood Seminar in Public Writing. Calderwood seminars are writing-intensive classes intended for majors in the field or in affiliated fields. They are designed to help students think about how to translate their discipline or interdisciplinary training to non-specialists through different forms of public writing. The focus of the seminar is on student writing, peer review, and editing, with required weekly assignment deadlines. Assignments will likely include book, film, music, and art reviews, and omnibus essays.

AS 310 Art, Animals & Anthropocene

Professor: Krista Caballero

Spring 2023

From species extinction to radioactive soil and climate change, we are now in the age of the Anthropocene. This recently proposed geologic period refers to the ways in which human activities have dramatically impacted and altered every ecosystem on Earth. Now in an age of mass extinction, what does it mean to visually interpret our more-than-human world and explore the often messy and complicated encounters between human and nonhuman animals? Indigenous and traditional ecological knowledge will ground our exploration as we consider the cultural, artistic, and technological implications of species decline. Our focus will include examining animal representations from caves to cages and from the living to the virtual, as well as themes of the wild and the tame, zoos, laboratory research, and companion species. Each of these topics will be paired with an exploration of the ever-increasing presence of animals in contemporary art with particular emphasis on multimedia and inter-species installations, bio art, as well as experimental video, film, and performance. Students will work intensively to develop experimental humanities approaches that blur boundaries between physical and digital media, integrate field-based research in the Hudson Valley, and experiment with interdisciplinary practices of art making in order to grapple with ways in which our understanding of other species directly relates to human self-understanding. This course is part of the Rethinking Place: Bard-on-Mahicantuck Initiative.

AS 221: ORIGINS OF THE “BLACK COOKOUT”

Professor: Joshua Livingston

Spring 2022

Cookouts are paramount in the Black American community. The cookout has always been an event that allows “folx” to celebrate culture, fellowship with new and old faces, sing, dance, play games and generally preserve the legacy of ancestors. The practice also has had lasting economic impact for entrepreneurs in the Black community. What is notable however is that the root of the cookout—the barbecuing itself—largely came Native American community’s practices of pit cooking, and in some part through the complex relationship between African Americans and Native Americans. This class will be centered around the book Black Smoke: African Americans and the United States of Barbecue— among other important texts, video, audio and film—to explore the main elements that have aided in shaping this pivotal form of placemaking among Black people. Goals of the course are: To critically examine the “human” design of placemaking and the important elements of fellowship; To explore the complex relationship between Black peoples and Native American tribes that brought about the art of barbecuing as a cultural trapping; To unpack and understand the economic implications of barbecue in the Black community; To share and learn about Black cookout cultural norms, and practices; To share and learn about fellow students’ community practices, and; To utilize campus resources, insights from Native American community members, and other wider Hudson Valley community resources. Along the way, students in the course will work on the design and construction of a custom barbeque pit—likened after traditional Native American design— to create a lasting “place” and cultural practice on campus. The course will culminate in students throwing a cookout in the spirit of the Black community that in turn pays homage to the rich history of indigenous and Black peoples. This course has no prerequisites and is open to students at all levels.

AS/ARTH 315: MATERIAL WORLDS AND SOCIAL IDENTITIES

Professor: Julia Rosenbaum

Spring 2022

How does the world of interior spaces, their furnishings and decorative objects, tell us stories, assert values, project identities? Through an engaged-learning experience with three early twentieth-century National Park sites in the Hudson Valley—the Vanderbilt Mansion, the Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Eleanor Roosevelt’s Home at Val-Kill—this seminar explores both the relationship between objects and identities and issues of consumption and appearance. The course will focus on American decorative arts from the late nineteenth into the twentieth century addressing theories about the purpose, meaning, and value of design and decoration as well as key movements, designers, and artists. Visiting the sites and collections regularly, we will combine the scholarly study of aesthetic ideals and social practices with hands-on examination of specific objects in the museum collections.  Key themes to be addressed include gender and the body; consumer capitalism and labor; political/class/queer identities; ethics and aesthetics.

AS/ARTS 309: VIBRANT MATTER: ARCHIVES OF CONTESTATION AND REANIMATION

Professor: Krista Caballero

Spring 2022

This advanced course will investigate the “aliveness” of archives and collections and what political theorist Jane Bennett describes as vibrant matter – that capacity of things “to act as quasi agents or forces with trajectories, propensities, or tendencies of their own.” We will take up this idea of archives and collections as a kind of lively, vibrant matter while simultaneously exploring ways they reveal which bodies and whose histories matter. Students will work in the media of their choosing to create artwork utilizing archives as a tool for both contestation and reanimation. Alongside this creative making will be an examination of key theoretical texts with emphasis on those that center indigenous scholarship and BIPOC artists. As such, course readings, active participation in class discussions as well as group critique will be key to our investigation. Topics will include: collective memory and erasure; repatriation and decolonization; fragmentation and digital accumulation; the collection and indexing of other species; agency and control. An integral component of this course will also include site-visits to both on and off-campus archives such as the Associated Press in NYC, Hudsonia at the Bard College Field Station, and local historical societies. Prerequisite: at least one 200 level practicing arts course.

AS/HIST 298: MAKING SILICON VALLEY HISTORIES

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2022

This course is an introduction to the history of Silicon Valley. Moving chronologically between 1945 and the present, we will study the history of this significant region, and stories about the area’s technology industry. With a focus on social justice,  this class will explore race and ethnicity, gender and sexuality, health and disability, immigration and labor, and diversity and inequality in technology and the modern United States. In this class, students will experience first-hand the history of the early Silicon Valley through a wealth of primary sources, such as newspaper accounts, oral histories, photographic images, government documents, corporate reports, advertisements and business journalism, and more. We will also engage an exciting and emerging secondary literature.

EUS/AS 309: ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE: ART, SCIENCE, AND RADICAL CARTOGRAPHY

Professor: Elias Dueker and Krista Caballero

Fall 2021

We generally assume maps are objective, accurate representations of data and the world around us when, in fact, they depict the knowledge, experience, and values of the humans who draft them. As a hybrid EUS practicum + colloquium, this course will explore ways in which ecological issues are entangled with colonial histories of racism and supremacy, resource extraction and expansion through mapping. Native American scholarship will ground our exploration as we consider the impact and consequences of mapping as a tool used historically to claim ownership and invite exploitation. We will also investigate the evolution of radical cartography to counter these practices and imagine alternative mapping for more just ecological futures. A series of Indigenous scholars and activists will provide an opportunity for students to learn from experts working at the forefront of their fields to address environmental injustices locally, nationally, and internationally. These guest lectures will be paired with hands-on projects that explore mapping as a tool for environmental advocacy alongside artistic and counter-mapping approaches that experiment with ways we might communicate scientific and humanistic knowledge to a wider audience. In both theory and practice this team-taught course aims to reconsider and transform ways of engaging community science and community action through collaborative inquiry, interdisciplinary experimentation, and meaningful cross-cultural dialogue.

AS/LIT 2213: BUILDING STORIES

Professor: Peter L’Official

Fall 2021

Cities and their surrounds have long been fertile grounds for the construction of narrative. This course examines relationships between narratives and their settings by employing conceptual frameworks borrowed from architectural studies and histories of the built environment. Weekly discussions of a wide range of texts—literary and otherwise—will be structured around building typologies and common tropes of urban planning: the row-house brownstone, the apartment building, the skyscraper, the suburban or rural house, and the arteries of linkage between them. We will read each set of texts as narratives of place, space, and architecture to discover what, if any, architectures of narrative may undergird or influence them. We will consider to what extent geography and landscape shape culture and identity; we’ll chart relationships between race, class, gender, and the environment as articulated by the city and related regions; and we will explore notions of public and private space and our ever-mutable understandings of what it means to be “urban.” Texts will include novels, essays, films, visual art, and graphic novels. Authors may include: Alison Bechdel, Sarah Broom, June Jordan, Rem Koolhaas, Ben Lerner, Kevin Lynch, Paule Marshall, Zadie Smith, D.J. Waldie, Colson Whitehead.

AS/LIT 3152: JEANNE LEE’S TOTAL ENVIRONMENT

Professor: Alex Benson

Fall 2021

This course bridges the study of American literature, campus history, and avant-garde music (especially free jazz) through an extended reflection on the work of vocalist Jeanne Lee (1939-2000). “I look at myself as already an environment,” Lee said in a 1979 interview, “and in turn the music is created as a total environment to the audience.” What did she mean by this? We may find some answers in our own environment; Lee graduated from Bard in 1961. She then went on to a four-decade career as a singer, poet, writer, and educator. Through that career we’ll consider questions of voice, aesthetics, race, and gender, paying special attention to relationships between art and politics, improvisation and community. To this end we will study a number of artists with whom Lee collaborated or from whom she drew inspiration, including writers Ralph Ellison, Ntozake Shange, and Gertrude Stein and musicians Marion Brown, John Cage, and Abbey Lincoln. Archival campus materials will help us understand Lee’s time at Bard, with a focus on musical performances, student publications, and curriculum. We’ll ask how all of these things intersected with broader currents of US culture at a moment of civil rights activism and other social transformations. In addition to listening, reading, writing, and discussion, coursework will involve collaborative, public-facing projects that may include designing an audio tour or podcast, conducting oral history interviews, and/or curating an educational exhibit. Open to Literature students but also to all others with interests in interdisciplinary arts. Preference in registration to moderated students, but no prerequisites.

AS/ARTH 225: ART AND ENVIRONMENT: PERSPECTIVES ON LAND, LANDSCAPE, AND ECOLOGY

Professor: Julia Rosenbaum

Spring 2021

If we want to understand ourselves, we would do well to take a searching look at our landscapes.

–D.W. Meinig (paraphrasing Peirce Lewis), The Interpretation of Ordinary Landscapes

This course explores the relationship between the natural world and United States culture, considering specifically the visual expression of that relationship: How have Americans imagined “nature” and represented it? How have concepts of land and landscape shaped perceptions about social order, identity, and sustainability? The course provides both a historical framework for thinking about these questions as well as a contemporary perspective, particularly in the context of a potential new era known as the “Anthropocene.” Scholars in the sciences and the humanities increasingly use this term to describe the current global impact of human-dominated ecosystems. Over the semester we will examine diverse imagery, from mound-building to mapmaking to landscape painting, and explore multiple perspectives, from indigenous practices to visual tools of settler colonialism to environmental art activism. The class will engage both past and present ideas and debates about the natural world through visual and textual analysis, writing exercises, local sites, and individual research.  AHVC distribution: 1800-present, Americas

AS/HIST/PS 2510: ENVIRONMENTAL HISTORIES OF THE RECENT UNITED STATES

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2021

This course critically explores the history of the twenty-and twenty-first century United States through the country’s natural and built environments. Moving chronologically, we consistently ask what the relationship is between nature, labor, and capital, and what the relationship is between space, place, and race. This course most closely speaks to students interested in federal and state environmental policies, activism regarding disability and health rights, fights over urban environmental concerns, perspectives from the North American West, and the history of transnational racial, indigenous, and environmental justice movements.

AS/HIST 2510: ENVIRONMENTAL HISTORIES OF THE RECENT UNITED STATES

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2021

This course critically explores the history of the twenty-and twenty-first century United States through the country’s natural and built environments. Moving chronologically, we consistently ask what the relationship is between nature, labor, and capital, and what the relationship is between space, place, and race. This course most closely speaks to students interested in federal and state environmental policies, activism regarding disability and health rights, fights over urban environmental concerns, perspectives from the North American West, and the history of transnational racial, indigenous, and environmental justice movements.

AS/HIST 382: RE-THINKING SILICON VALLEY

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2021

This seminar uses the space of the Silicon Valley to explore larger threads and themes in post-war economic, urban, political, and intellectual United States history.

AS/HIST 384: NATIVE ARTS, NATIVE STUDIES: RE/FRAMING THE HISTORY OF INDIGENOUS ART AND COLLECTION

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2021

This research seminar (jointly offered with CCS and open to moderated undergraduates) offers students a chance to study and work through a variety of themes framing contemporary Native artistic production and collection. We will consider foundational, interdisciplinary theory in Native American and Indigenous Studies (NAIS) as well as laying a historical groundwork in how academic and arts institutions have engaged with and framed Native art and objects. Using case studies, students will have a chance to consider how Native collections have entered archives and arts institutions, how these institutions are being forced (or volunteering) to reconsider Native objects and artistic production, and how Native communities and activists have framed arguments on legal and ethical grounds to engage with issues of reparations and repatriation of objects. The course will also consider traditions of modernism within Native arts and the interventions made into these broader conversations by two generations of contemporary Native artists. Prior knowledge of the subject is not required, though helpful (eg. HIST 2356, ARTH 389, ARTH 279, EUS 309). For undergraduate History and American Studies majors, this course fulfills the Historiography/American Studies Junior Seminar requirements.

EUS/ AS/ HR 309: EUS Colloquium/Practicum

Professors: Elias Dueker & Krista Caballero

Fall 2020

We generally assume maps are objective, accurate representations of data and the world around us when, in fact, they depict the knowledge, experience, and values of the humans who draft them. As a hybrid EUS practicum + colloquium, this course will explore ways in which ecological issues are entangled with colonial histories of racism and supremacy, resource extraction and expansion through mapping. Native American scholarship will ground our exploration as we consider the impact and consequences of mapping as a tool used historically to claim ownership and invite exploitation. We will also investigate the evolution of radical cartography to counter these practices and imagine alternative mapping for more just ecological futures. A series of Indigenous scholars and activists will provide an opportunity for students to learn from experts working at the forefront of their fields to address environmental injustices locally, nationally, and internationally. These guest lectures will be paired with hands-on projects that explore mapping as a tool for environmental advocacy alongside artistic and counter-mapping approaches that experiment with ways we might communicate scientific and humanistic knowledge to a wider audience. In both theory and practice this team-taught course aims to reconsider and transform ways of engaging community science and community action through collaborative inquiry, interdisciplinary experimentation, and meaningful cross-cultural dialogue.

LIT/ EUS/ AS 3028: SOUNDSCAPES OF AMERICAN LITERATURE

Professor: Alexandre Benson

Fall 2020

(Junior Seminar) We often use sonic terms—voice, tone, echo, resonance—to describe poetry and fiction, even as we set writing in opposition to the noisy, melodious stuff of speech and song. If this paradox poses a knotty problem for our study of literature as a medium, it also raises questions of social relation that have been central to the history of American writing: What does it mean to read and to listen in situations of radical cultural difference? How have the concepts of textuality and orality intersected with the histories of racism and other instruments of inequality? What happens to the traditional dichotomy of sound and sight when approached from the perspectives of disability studies and of environmental humanities? We will explore these questions in literary texts, musical recordings, and theoretical work in the field of sound studies and beyond. Authors and artists considered may include James Baldwin, John Cage, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Emily Dickinson, Zora Neale Hurston, Helen Keller, Abbey Lincoln, and Pauline Oliveros. Coursework will focus on practices of research, writing, revision, and collaboration that will prepare students to write senior projects in Literature and related humanities fields.

HIST/ AS/ AFR/ FREN/ HR 2631: Capitalism and Slavery

Professor: Christian Crouch

Fall 2020

Scholars have argued that there is an intimate relationship between the contemporary wealth of the developed world and the money generated through four hundred years of chattel slavery in the Americas and the transatlantic slave trade. Is there something essential that links capitalism, even liberal democratic capitalism, to slavery? How have struggles against slavery and for freedom and rights, dealt with this connection? This course will investigate the development of this linkage, studying areas like the gender dynamics of early modern Atlantic slavery, the correlation between coercive political and economic authority, and the financial implications of abolition and emancipation.  We will focus on North America and the Caribbean from the early 17th century articulation of slavery through the staggered emancipations of the 19th century. The campaign against the slave trade has been called the first international human rights movement – today does human rights discourse simply provide a human face for globalized capitalism, or offer an alternative vision to it?  Concluding weeks tackle contemporary reparations, anticolonialism, and can “racial capitalism” finally be abandoned. Readings include foundational texts on slavery and capitalism, critical Black theory, and a variety of historical works centering the voices of enslaved and free people of color from economic, cultural, and intellectual perspectives. There are no prerequisites and first-year students/non-majors are welcome. A remote only section is available.

AS/ EUS/ HR 219: Mapping Police Violence

Professor: Kwame Holmes

Spring 2020

This class emerges from my preoccupation with the recent increase in media and political attention to extra- judicial killings by police officers in the United States. Predominant questions will include: What can we know about police violence, and what are the barriers to data transparency and distribution? What are the means–political, legal, economic, cultural– through which Western societies authorize the police to use deadly force?  Can we measure the impact of police violence on a range of exogenous factors like public health indices, adjacent property values, educational opportunities and the distribution of social services? In pursuit of answers, we will engage political theory, history, sociology, economics, and cultural studies to produce an interdisciplinary study of police violence. I use the word “produce” with great intention. Students will be tasked with producing new knowledge about police violence.  As a collective, we will use demographic analytical tools, alongside datasets from the Police Data Initiative, to spatially apprehend police violence incidents in a given city. Students will then bring their own research questions to our collectively generated maps. In that sense, we will also think critically about how to ask a research question, and how to pursue a variety of research projects.

AS/ FREN/ HR/ HIST 314: Violent Culture/Material Pleasure

Professor: Christian Crouch

Spring 2020

Emeralds.  Chocolate. Sugar.  Tobacco. Precious. Exotic.  Sweet. Addictive. Like human actors, commodities have stories of their own.  They shape human existence, create new sets of interactions, cross time and space, and offer a unique and incredible lens through which to view history.  This course explores the hidden life of material objects that circulated from the early modern Atlantic into the rest of the world. The life cycle of these products and items reveal narratives of Atlantic violence imbedded into these products: the claiming of Indian land, the theft of enslaved labor, the construction and corruption of gender norms.  Course readings will introduce historical methods and strategies to reclaim history from objects found in different parts of the Americas and will culminate with students having the opportunity to do original research and write the narrative of an item themselves. This course fulfills the American Studies Junior Seminar requirement and History Major Conference requirement.  

Anthropology

ANTH/MUS 247: Ethnography: Music & Sound

Professor: Whitney Slaten

Spring 2022

How have recent ethnomusicologists and anthropologists written about traditional and popular musics around the world? How does this writing respond to representing culture, locally and globally? How does this writing about musics’ social contexts respond to changing academic attitudes within the humanities and social sciences, as well as the interdisciplinary development of sound studies? Students will read, present, and discuss chapters from recent book length examples of musical ethnography. Lectures and discussions will focus on the writing strategies of ethnographers, continually assessing how writing represents and analyzes local and global practices of production, circulation, and consumption, as well as how such works participate in emergent scholarly traditions. The course will culminate in a written comparative ethnography analysis paper in which students will compare two ethnographic monographs.

ANTH/HIST 3103: POLITICAL RITUAL IN THE MODERN WORLD

Professor: Robert Culp

Fall 2021

Bastille Day, the US presidential inaugural, Japan’s celebration of victory in the Russo-Japanese War, pageants reenacting the Bolshevik Revolution, and rallies at Nuremberg and at Tian’anmen Square. In all these forms and many others, political ritual has been central to nation-building, colonialism, and political movements over the last three centuries. This course uses a global, comparative perspective to analyze the modern history of political ritual. We will explore the emergence of new forms of political ritual with the rise of the nation-state in the nineteenth century and track global transformations in the performance of politics as colonialism spread the symbols and pageantry of the nation-state. Central topics will include state ritual and the performance of power, the relationship between ritual and citizenship in the modern nation-state, the ritualization of politics in social and political movements, and the role of mass spectacle in the construction of both fascism and state socialism. Seminar meetings will focus on discussion of secondary and primary materials that allow us to analyze the intersection of ritual and politics in a variety of contexts. These will range from early-modern Europe, pre-colonial Bali, and late imperial China to revolutionary France, 19th century America, colonial India, semi-colonial China, nationalist Japan, fascist Italy, Nazi Germany, the USSR, Europe in 1968, and contemporary Syria. In addition to common readings and seminar participation, students will write a final seminar paper exploring one aspect or instance of political ritual. Moderated history students can use this course for a major conference.

ARCHITECTURE

ARCH 111 MC: ARCHITECTURE AS MEDIA: SPATIAL SUBJECTS

Professor: Michael Cohen

Spring 2024

This studio-based course introduces students to architectural tools of communication while presenting architecture as a field that is expansive—a field that engages not only with technical knowledge, but also with the making of public imaginaries, personal environments, cultural spatial aesthetics, and even the contested ground of the political, economic and social. The course is simultaneously an introduction to the techniques of representation that define the discipline of architecture and an opportunity to explore and question how architecture mediates the world. Students will learn and practice techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, mapping, 3D modeling and compositional image-making. While the focus will be on an array of forms of architectural drawing, these techniques will be carefully positioned against a survey of paradigmatic moments and themes in the history of architecture that will help situate the practice today. Throughout the term, our design work will be supplemented by readings and periodic research work, and we will situate this against regular lectures that will introduce you to the broader culture of architecture. The course will provide a foundation of concepts and skills necessary to make architecture legible and to convey a spatial argument through design. No prerequisites.

 

ARCH 111: Architecture as Media: Re-Tooling the Trade

Professor: Jesse McCormick

Spring 2024

In this introductory course, the ‘tools of the trade’ (plans, sections, digital drafting, perspectives, collages, physical and digital modeling and montage) will be entry points into deciphering the politics, practices and protocols that govern our built environment. Seeking to proactively challenge certain assumptions of the field—that architecture is a practice based on production (of buildings, of assets, of products, of space, of culture, of drawings of images, of ideas…)—the aim of the course will be to reposition architecture as a method of seeing and reading space; a production of legibility. Through a series of explorations, students will learn the tools, techniques and media of spatial-visual communication used in the field of architecture while attempting to make new claims about its production and productivity, opening up new roles for architects in evolving social paradigms. Students will be asked to interrogate both lived space, representations of it, and existing precedents, as well as to engage with texts that will inform an evolving and consistent discussion throughout. No prerequisites.

 

 

ARCH 211 BC: ARCHITECTURE AS TRANSLATION: AT SCALE

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Spring 2024

Architectural models are a unique medium, a visual language that references the built world through scale and abstraction. As physical objects, they represent futures (proposals), histories (sites and contexts), and current conditions (material resources, shifting societal demands), often slipping between these temporalities. Learning how to make models is as important as learning to read what they tell us about the world. In this elective design studio, students will make an architectural model as a continuous practice, utilizing a spectrum of physical and digital fabrication methods such as woodworking, casting, digital modeling, and laser cutting. In making architectural models, we will question how societal models (such as domestic routines, building regulations, political cycles, and environmental systems) can be represented in physical form. We will ask how this form of architectural translation can complicate latent biases within the built environment, making visible otherwise invisible networks of power. No prerequisites.

ARCH 221: PLANETARY STUDIO: RADICAL RURALISM

Professor: Stephanie Lee

Spring 2024

How can we approach architecture beyond form-based explorations, but as a mode to re-imagine current sociopolitical, institutional, and territorial entanglements? This design studio seminar explores architecture as a network of situated relationships between built and non-built environments. Focusing on the colonial construction of rural imaginaries, students will pull apart and realign existing agricultural food systems at various scales. We will question the destructive and extractive processes of industrial agriculture, globalization and late capitalism by suggesting a para-fictional alternative: a land practice of resistance, regeneration, and mutual care based on the network of radical farms in the Hudson Valley. For the final project, students will produce a series of speculative projection drawings that read as one collective canvas with multiple scales, perspectives, and realities.

ARCH 331: ARCHITECTURE AS RESEARCH: MORE-THAN-HUMAN ARCHITECTURE

Professor: Ivan Lopez Munuera

Spring 2024

In the contemporary world, the concept of the human being has transcended traditional boundaries. In the face of the climate crisis, and with the challenges made by non-normative knowledge structures, our bodies are increasingly understood as intricate ecosystems, composed of bacteria, fungi, viruses, microplastics, prosthetics, chemical regimes, and myriad other components. However, prevailing historical and theoretical narratives in architecture have remained predominantly anthropocentric, placing autonomous and zipped-up human beings at the core of their discourse. This course offers an exploration of the complex interplay between non-human and human designs within contemporary global contexts, delving into historical examples and new imaginations. Emphasis is placed on the incorporation of what is traditionally termed “nature” into design processes, as well as the roles that the evolution of animal, vegetal, and mineral have played in design. Additionally, we will investigate non-human forms of intelligence and healing, ceremonial and repair practices in architecture, challenging the notion that design must solely serve human needs. We will work collectively in the production of an exhibition on Non-Human Architecture, and a publication that will accompany this show.

ARCH 322: FUTURE TENSE – THE ARCHITECTURAL EXHIBITION

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Spring 2024

Architectural exhibitions are places that take stock of a field in constant movement; a site in which global shifts and debates intersect, bringing into view consequences and openings for a future under construction. In this course we will mine the medium of the architectural exhibition to ask: How can an archive be used to revise an established canon? How can the curation of an exhibition unsettle what has become commonplace? How do we situate present practice against an uncertain future? We will discuss the ways in which architecture is produced and reproduced within the space of an exhibition, as well as how the exhibition, as a contested space, can create openings for renewed understandings of culture and politics beyond architecture. This course will culminate in a public exhibition featuring the architectural model as a central medium to re-present contemporary and historical ideas against one another. By critically surveying contemporary practice, students will employ a range of representational techniques to enunciate questions for possible shared futures that escape the gravity of dominant cultural imaginaries. Moderation is a prerequisite.

ARCH 111 TT: AFTER THE OBJECT: RELATIONAL ARCHITECTURE

Professor: Thena Tak

Fall 2023

This introductory studio course to architecture foregrounds the discipline as a practice of entanglements. Rather than privileging object-based thinking, the course considers architecture through a more alchemic approach: one that focuses on relationships, transformations, and ritual-making. The emphasis on relational-architecture, as opposed to object-architecture, will be explored through precedent analysis, critique, and transformation. The detrimental consequences of dominant western colonial tendencies to fragment, singularize, and flatten complex planetary stories and entanglements will be challenged through the examination of representation as a verbal, visual, and sonic language. Students will be asked to investigate these spatial relationships through representations that focus on illustrating time with basic animation techniques using digital softwares including Rhino, Illustrator, and Photoshop. No prerequisites. All spaces are reserved for incoming first year students. Registration for this class will take place in August.

 

ARCH 111 TT: AFTER THE OBJECT: RELATIONAL ARCHITECTURE

Professor: Thena Tak

Fall 2023

This introductory studio course to architecture foregrounds the discipline as a practice of entanglements. Rather than privileging object-based thinking, the course considers architecture through a more alchemic approach: one that focuses on relationships, transformations, and ritual-making. The emphasis on relational-architecture, as opposed to object-architecture, will be explored through precedent analysis, critique, and transformation. The detrimental consequences of dominant western colonial tendencies to fragment, singularize, and flatten complex planetary stories and entanglements will be challenged through the examination of representation as a verbal, visual, and sonic language. Students will be asked to investigate these spatial relationships through representations that focus on illustrating time with basic animation techniques using digital softwares including Rhino, Illustrator, and Photoshop. No prerequisites. All spaces are reserved for incoming first year students. Registration for this class will take place in August.

 

ARCH 111 SL: How to Build a Ruin

Professor: Stephanie Lee

Fall 2023

This studio course will introduce students to the language of architectural representation by framing the field of architecture as an ever changing process of social imagination and spatial deterioration. We will aim to understand design practice as an inherent mediation between changes in natural and cultural forces on buildings and environments. Engaging with ideas of decay, disrepair, and decrepitude, we will create fictional histories of dying industries situated in rural and suburban environments such as malls, farms, bank branches, and gas stations. Alongside readings about the legacies of capitalism and socio-economic crises, students will utilize techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, physical modeling, and compositional image-making to explore regenerative design processes and the emergence of new spatial possibilities for “ruins”. No prerequisites.

ARCH 214 SL: POST-EDEN: CONFLICTS, COLONIALITY AND PLANTS

Professor: Stephanie Lee

Fall 2023

How might botanical worlds carry notions of extractive economies, settler colonialism and legacies of racial capitalism? This elective design studio seminar will focus on the interconnectedness of property, plants and bodies from the past to present. While understanding the role of architecture and landscape in agri-capitalism, we will expose matters of resiliency, reform and recovery through case studies such as the Yedikule Gardens, Victory gardens, the Millennium Seed Bank, Crystal Palace, Orangeries, biopiracy and others. Focusing on the role of “floor plans” as an architectural device, we will situate these complex entanglements by collaborating on a toolkit of care for humans, land and everything in between. For the second half of the studio, we will work with the Bard Horticulture and Arboretum Department to design a land-based intervention for the campus. Students will have weekly assignments, and learn techniques of digital drafting, model making, compositional image-making through Adobe Creative Programs and Rhino 3D. No prerequisites.

ARCH/HUM 234: LANDSCAPE STUDIES: THE HUDSON RIVER VALLEY

Professor: Jana Mader

Fall 2023

For centuries, the land on which the Bard Arboretum now sits has been inhabited and used by diverse societies and cultures. In this course, students learn to critically engage with the existing landscape and vegetation to unfold “the story” of the land now owned by Bard College. By confronting the narratives that shaped these lands from an interdisciplinary perspective, students can build skills to become informed and impactful agents of change. Particular areas of inquiry include the Hudson River Valley in art, literature, music, and film; the history of Native Americans, colonialism, and slavery in the region; horticulture, bio-diversity, and native plants of the Hudson River Valley (living collection). We will explore the past, present, and possible future of the Hudson River Valley through a series of primary and secondary sources including fiction and nonfiction works of literature, visual art, film, etc. Meetings will be held in the classroom, and outdoors at the Bard Arboretum, Montgomery Place, and Blithewood; we will observe and study the actual river, our native plants, and learn more about how our current home and what we see in it have changed over time.

ARCH 130 TT: Fossil Invitations: rethinking architectural site analysis through deep time

Professor: Thena Tak

Spring 2023

Site analysis in architecture has become a rather routine practice, perhaps even performative. Oftentimes, an expected set of drawings acts only as evidence of due diligence rather than as instruments for an archaeological kind of thinking and seeing whereby a place is invited to share its ancestors, proclivities, and quirks. Given that architecture is a practice very much entangled with place, how might we expand our anthropocentric conventions of how a ‘site’ is considered and represented? How do we form invitations to a place that engages its deep time? How do we greet its varied, and continuously forming biographies? And can ‘site analysis’ even be approached as a deeper form of land acknowledgement?  In this 5 week-long, intensive workshop, students will be asked to rethink ‘site analysis’ through the design and making of plaster core samples that reflect an expanded understanding of place – where trees, soil, and fossils are acknowledged as both witnesses and makers of memory, mineral, and myth. Each core sample becomes a vessel of specific temporal, material, and spatial meditations of a given place. From the making of these, students will then draw and represent their core samples digitally using Rhino and Adobe Suite software. No prerequisites.  This intensive workshop will run only during the first 5 weeks of the term.

ARCH 221 SL: Para-fictional Design Investigations: Hard Labor, Soft Space

Professor: Stephanie Lee

Spring 2023

How can we approach architecture beyond form-based explorations, but as a mode to reimagine current sociopolitical, institutional, and territorial entanglements? This design studio seminar explores architecture as a network of situated relationships between built and non-built environments. We will inquire design research from a planetary dimension by zooming in, pulling apart, and realigning various forms of rural, agricultural, and food systems. Through the appropriation of fact and fiction, students will learn to utilize architectural mediums to produce new subjectivities instead of cementing existing hierarchies and visual relationships. Using speculative drawings, modeling and experimental mapping, students will explore the Hudson Valley region as a site of radical ruralism. We will question the destructive and extractive processes of industrial agriculture, globalization and late capitalism, by carefully suggesting a parafictional alternative: a land practice of resistance, regeneration, and mutual care. Operating as a collaborative studio-seminar, we will produce a series of drawings that reads as one collective canvas with multiple scales, perspectives, and realities. In addition to design workshops, we will discuss readings from Monica White, Dolores Hayden, bell hooks, Adrienne Brown, Lydia Kallipoliti, Jenny Odell, Carrie Lambert-Beatty, Leah Penniman, Saidiya Hartman and Kathryn Yusoff – among others. Prerequisites: ARCH 111 or professor’s permission.

 

ARCH/ARTH 304: MINOR FIGURES: ARCHITECTURE AND BIOGRAPHY

Professor:  Olga Touloumi

Spring 2023

What can we learn about the built environment and its politics from someone’s biography? What kind of evidence and stories lie within the personal? Building on Saidiya Hartman’s experiments with speculative histories for “minor figures”, this course foregrounds intersectional and feminist methodologies in the study of women’s lives and their role in architecture. We will use the life of Afro-French architect Christine Benglia (1936-2020) as a lens to examine the role that biography and personal narratives can play in recovering marginalized voices and positionalities in the production of space. Students will engage in work with primary sources – Benglia’s personal papers, oral history records, correspondence, sketches – in order to uncover the perspective of a black, middle-class woman from France learning, teaching, and working as an architect in the United States during the post-World War II period. The goal will be to extrapolate the larger framework and questions around gender, race, and class that shaped postwar American architecture and art from Benglia’s personal and intimate world of objects and words. To help us in this exploration, we will be using as our lens theoretical texts by Angela Davis, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Michel Foucault, Saidiya Hartman, Gloria Anzaldúa, among others. The course will culminate in the collaborative design of a website and an exhibition, involving also independent research and writing. Art History and Visual Culture Requirements: Modern, Americas.

 

ARCH 111: Unseen Services: Reimagining the Everyday

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Fall 2022

During this studio-based course, students will learn to use architectural representation techniques to create a new vocabulary for reimagining the architecture of commonly shared, everyday services. Waiting rooms, walk-in clinics, dmv offices, bank lobbies, among other spaces have become commonplace and by extension, unquestioned and underutilized. Though often taken for granted as background spaces, we will come to understand how they are part of the construction of societal norms, and their potential to host unconvential forms of public life that we will explore and reimagine through this course. Using tools of digital drafting, site analysis, physical models, and experimental image making, students will interrogate and reimagine these everyday spaces in our built environment. Through research, discussion and design proposition, each student will rewrite the role of their selected space of everyday services and propose alternatives that speak to our evolving understanding of shared resources, policies, societal tendencies, and expectations. We will think of our sites of intervention as testing grounds for new social relations to emerge, using design to reposition these everyday services as crucial elements in a larger societal transformation. The studio will conclude by imagining the proposals as a collective set of new urban elements, repositioning our conversation as a negotiation between the unquestioned past and the multiple possible futures. No prerequisites.

ARCH 130: Domestic Agents: Open Practices Workshop I

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Fall 2022

In this half-semester design workshop, students will create ‘domestic agents’–spatial objects which question the norms and rituals of our everyday lives through design tools and inquisitive disruption. We will begin by reorienting our expectations of domestic spaces by considering the things around us and our relationships to them. We will encounter these against a series of case studies—architectural precedents and historical places—which may allow us to understand how societal expectations of domestic design have emerged and transformed. From there, we will seek to reimagine the home towards more inclusive, provocative and liberating futures. The course will privilege new family compositions, accommodating new social configurations, rather than our inherited one. We will design our ‘domestic agents’ using experimental digital drawing techniques to create our own visual language. This class meets for the first half of the semester. No prerequisites.

ARCH 211: Little Blue Marble: Letters to the earth

Professor: Thena Tak

Fall 2022

Through a series of carefully selected texts, this seminar focuses on building better relationships with our planet by engaging areas of discourse that actively and intimately connect us to the natural world.  In architecture, our relationship to the natural world has been framed through many lenses – most familiar is perhaps through the more clinical lens of technology and performance.  Little Blue Marble however, foregrounds empathy, attentiveness, and participation as ways to bring us in better communion with the earth and perhaps, this form of relation may allow for an alternative set of cultural and social practices within architecture that shift our discipline’s dominant modes of thinking and being.  A few key texts that will help guide this conversation include Robin Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass, Robert Macfarlane’s Underland, and Slow Spatial Reader: Chronicles of Radical Affection edited by Carolyn F. Strauss.  In addition to readings and discussions, Little Blue Marble will ask students to create letters to the earth throughout the term.  These letters will also take on varied expressions and forms through writing and ‘open’ drawing, i.e. a range of drawing forms, from digital to analogue methods, will be welcome.  The making of these letters will be opportunities for students to rethink language, representation, and storytelling as a way to help us build literacy with the more-than-human world. No prerequisites required. Please email Ross Exo Adams ([email protected]) for inquiries.

ARCH 222: An Atlas of Radical Ruralism: Hard Labor, Soft Space

Professor: Stephanie Kyuyoung Lee

Fall 2022

This research and design studio will focus on rural approaches to social, racial, and economic liberation. Working collaboratively, we will create a global atlas of radical farming collectives to be later published as a zine. By looking at historical, fictional, and realized case studies, students will map out a spatial taxonomy of cooperatives, intentional communities, regenerative agriculture farms, and back-to-land initiatives. What does it mean to create an infrastructure of care, and systems of resilience within a capitalist landscape of production, extraction, and exploitation? In this course, we will construct a network of political ecologies, linking case studies like Freedom Farm Cooperative, Marinaleda, and Soul Fire Farm. Through seminars and workshops, students will learn to create and analyze each project through 2D and 3D drawings alongside diagramming and multimedia collaging. Through this collective process, students will articulate notions of “land” and “labor”, and pair them with new dialogues on how the rural countryside operates as a site for radical forms of collective living.  No Prerequisites. Please email Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco ([email protected]) for inquiries.

ARCH 130: PERSPECTIVAL SPECULATIONS: OPEN PRACTICES WORKSHOP I

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Spring 2022

This one-month workshop will run from February 2nd to March 2nd and introduces drawing techniques to investigate the inherited conditions of our constructed environment and to speculate on its future. Throughout the workshop, students will create a full-scale perspectival drawing to reveal aspects of our environment that have come together not by intention, but by chance. With this, we will construct an alternative architectural language which measures, recomposes, and acknowledges our built environment as an accumulation of codes, patents, systems and legal frameworks, in service of proposing new opportunities. Each student will isolate an intersection of built space around campus (mechanical, structural, material, open to closed, corner, hallway, gap, etc.) and productively work to collapse its boundaries. Through readings (both from architecture and our own interpretations) and technical documents such as building codes and patents, students will name their constructed context, and draw over and around the existing site as a means to transform it. This class invites students from all backgrounds to engage with the fundamentals of architectural language. The course will conduct a series of drawing workshops and short exercises testing physical and conceptual space through digital 2D/3D modelling, drafting and image collaging. The final installation of the course will result in full scale perspective drawings and collages installed on the sites around campus. NO PREREQUISITES REQUIRED. For inquiries, contact Ivonne Santoyo Orozco, isantoyoorozco@bard.edu

ARCH 221: INSTITUTIONS FOR PLANETARY FICTIONS

Professor: Ross Adams

Spring 2022

What can we learn when we approach architecture as a ‘planetary’ practice? Aside from opening up new scales of design or shifting our focus to ecological concerns, how does this perspective fundamentally alter what it means to practice architecture? This design studio-seminar is an effort to introduce architecture as a worldmaking practice by acknowledging its inherently fictional capacity to imagine ways of being—modes of existence that depart from our present world. Unsettling notions that have underpinned architectural thought for centuries—private property, territory, racial capitalism, terra nullius—the aim of this studio-seminar is to approach architecture from alternate sites of inquiry that reveal it to be, more than anything else, a technology that mediates our relation to the world. Our work will be to design institutions for planetary fictions, architectural interventions that seek to instigate public imaginaries around sites of common existence—air, water, soil, forest, clouds—as a basis to exploit the narrative and fictional capacity of architecture at a moment of climatic and cultural transformation. We will develop our planetary fictions through a network of readings, films, discussions, collective design work, image making and invited guest lectures. Prerequisite for this course is ARCH 111 or permission from the professor. Please note studio work involves weekly assignments and, when possible, extracurricular events, such as field trips and studio-related talks. Computers with required software will be provided by the College.

ARCH 240: ARCHITECTURAL ENTANGLEMENTS WITH LABOR

Professor: Ivonne Santoyo Orozco

Spring 2022

Architecture is both the product of labor and the organizer of its relations, yet often these issues remain overshadowed by aesthetic considerations and the broader discourse of design. In shifting the question of labor in architecture to the foreground, this course invites students to reflect on the spatio-political role architecture has played in mediating bodies, work and capital. To do this, we will analyze contemporary transformations to paradigmatic sites of work (offices, factories, tech campuses), as well as the many spaces that have been produced to feed architectural production and its endless cycles of extraction (camps, slums, mines), or the architecture that reproduces forms of maintenance (houses, squares, resorts). We will analyze a diverse set of contemporary and historical architectural precedents against a heterogenous landscape of voices from Maurizio Lazzarato, Silvia Federici, Mierle Laderman Ukeless, David Harvey, Peggy Deamer, Mabel O. Wilson, among others. The course will unfold in a combination of lectures and seminars. There are no exams but students are expected to complete weekly assignments, a midterm and a final project. This is an OSUN class and is open to Bard students as well as students from multiple OSUN partner institutions.

ARCH 322: LEXICON OF EVERYDAY FUTURES

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Spring 2022

Where is the line between a presentation of proposed use (built space) and a presentation of potential use (exhibited space)? This design studio-seminar collapses the distinction between curating and creating by designing an exhibition, as well as the objects to be exhibited. By constructing our own vocabulary of contexts, codes, systems, and details of architecture, we will examine components of built space at multiple scales through a series of evolving models. We will reframe the institutional space of the gallery as a site of intellectual and creative production itself, and collapse the boundary between specified collections and our everyday context.  Through a series of experimental workshops our focus will be on ubiquitous elements of space which inhabit most projects, but whose agency is usually anonymous (fire codes, mechanical systems, utilities, for example). Over the semester, we will iterate scaled physical models and interchange their roles between gallery and architectural mock up, speculative object and utilitarian element. The semester will culminate in a built exhibition which intends to open up architecture as a future practice that can more readily accept itself as a collective/collected environment. Prerequisites ARCH 111 or permission from the program. Email [email protected]

ARCH/ART 126: ED MAPPING: YOU ARE HERE

Professor: Ellen Driscoll

Spring 2022

Maps have been dynamic visual and conceptual inspiration for many artists.  In this class, we will work with drawing and sculptural installation to investigate the translation of scale and data to abstraction inherent in the art of mapping.  We will study a range of contemporary artists around the world for whom maps are central to their artistic practice. We will study the visual strategies, content, and context of maps in these artist’s works. We will also look at a rich range of historical maps from Polynesian navigation charts to the soundless silk maps of World War 2. The work of Katherine Harmon, Rebecca Solnit, W.E. B. DuBois, the counter-maps of the Black Panthers, and the Indigenous Mapping Collective, among others will form foundations for our research and artistic exploration. The 1000-acre campus of Bard will be our laboratory for focused research and for generating three visual projects. This is an Engaged Liberal Arts & Sciences (ELAS) course. In this course you will be given the opportunity to bridge theory to practice while engaging a community of interest throughout the semester. A significant portion of ELAS learning takes place outside of the classroom: students learn through engagement with different geographies, organizations, and programs in the surrounding communities or in collaboration with partners from Bard’s national and international networks. To learn more please click here.

ARCH/ARTH 234: OF UTOPIAS

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Spring 2022

This class explores the theory and practice of utopia from an architectural perspective. Utopias have always been imagined through a variety of mediums like the manifesto, the blueprint, and visual and performing arts. The course investigates the manifold scales of utopian articulation and realization, from compound communities to projects designing the entire globe, and from unrealized proposals to intentional communes of co-liberation. The class will use the concept of utopia to map out the ways that men and women have sought to transform the spatial, psychic, and social landscapes they inhabited. What can we learn from the utopian imperative? What is the shape of utopia? How should we understand the relationship between thought and practice, hope and disappointment, idealism and realism? Projects presented range from early industrial colonies, socialist utopias, Christian communities, and anarchist utopias to shopping malls, factories, and afrofuturism. The projects will be discussed in conjunction with major texts by Sir Thomas More, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Karl Marx, Robert Owen, Louis Marin, to name a few. Course requirements involve short assignments, class presentations and a final paper. AHVC Requirements: Modern, Americas

ARCH/HIST 298: MAKING SILICON VALLEY HISTORIES

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2022

This course is an introduction to the history of Silicon Valley. Moving chronologically between 1945 and the present, we will study the history of this significant region, and stories about the area’s technology industry. With a focus on social justice,  this class will explore race and ethnicity, gender and sexuality, health and disability, immigration and labor, and diversity and inequality in technology and the modern United States. In this class, students will experience first-hand the history of the early Silicon Valley through a wealth of primary sources, such as newspaper accounts, oral histories, photographic images, government documents, corporate reports, advertisements and business journalism, and more. We will also engage an exciting and emerging secondary literature.

ARCH 130: LANDSCAPE DEVICES FOR A CHANGING CLIMATE: OPEN PRACTICES WORKSHOP

Professor: Montserrat Bonvehi-Rosich

Fall 2021

This intensive workshop will run from Sept 10 to Oct 4.

The effects of a changing climate on the environment around us cannot be entirely foreseen. While there is abundant information on how the climate might change given different economic and political scenarios, no one knows with any certainty how these changes will affect the plants, animals, soils, and complex ecosystem interactions that we depend on locally. While environmental sensing at a planetary scale has alerted us to this condition, a more local approach to monitoring environmental change is needed. This approach must engage with existing reservoirs of vernacular knowledge, bodily practices of careful observation, and a new architectural grammar for registering landscape change. In this short course we will design our own sensing devices to be deployed at the scale of a tree, a house, a lake, or a small forest. Each design will combine a sensor with a protocol for how to collect environmental data. By using sensors like cameras, thermometers, Ph meters, and our own bodily observations of the world, we will create high-resolution, if not necessarily high-tech drawings and images of environmental change. Through a direct engagement with local sites, we will test our insights and design proposals for how to engage with the condition of continuous change in the environment. No prerequisites are required, however students interested in this course should note that the nature of this intensive workshop requires you to be available during the 4 weekends of the course for field trips, workshops and extracurricular activities. Estimated cost of supplies: 50-100USD. Please email Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco ([email protected]) for inquiries.

ARCH/ HR 240: ARCHITECTURAL ENTANGLEMENTS WITH LABOR

Professor: Ivonne Santoyo Orozco

Spring 2021

Architecture is both the product of labor and the organizer of its relations, yet often these issues remain overshadowed by aesthetic considerations and the broader discourse of design. In shifting the question of labor in architecture to the foreground, this course invites students to reflect on the spatio-political role architecture has played in mediating bodies, work and capital. To do this, we will analyze contemporary transformations to paradigmatic sites of work (offices, factories, tech campuses), as well as the many spaces that have been produced to feed architectural production and its endless cycles of extraction (camps, slums, mines), or the architecture that reproduces forms of maintenance (houses, squares, resorts). We will analyze a diverse set of contemporary and historical architectural precedents against a heterogenous landscape of voices from Maurizio Lazzarato, Silvia Federici, Mierle Laderman Ukeless, David Harvey, Peggy Deamer, Mabel O. Wilson, among others. The course will unfold in a combination of lectures and seminars. There are no exams but students are expected to complete weekly assignments, a midterm and a final project.

ARCH 111: ARCHITECTURE AS MEDIA

Professor: Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco

Spring 2021

This studio-based course introduces students to architectural tools of communication while presenting architecture as a field that communicates not only technical knowledge, but public imaginaries, spatial aesthetics of popular culture and contested ideas. In this way, the course will teach students basic architectural tools of representation as a situated practice of aesthetic production. Students will learn and practice techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, mapping, modeling and image-making, all of which will be carefully positioned against a survey of paradigmatic moments in the history of architecturally-related visual cultures. Thus, it will span a series of design technique workshops across a range of lectures ranging from the historical emergence of the floorplan, to contextualizing the collages of El Lissitzky to the sci-fi animations of Archigram to the Marxist photocollages of Superstudio to the CGI-rendered culture of late capitalist architecture to the activism of Architecture Lobby, Forensic Architecture and WBYA?, among other crucial episodes in the history of architectural media. Studio work involves weekly assignments. When possible, a field trip will be organized. Estimated costs for studio related assignments and activities is $200. Financial assistance may be available. Please contact instructor. No prior experience required.

ARCH/ EUS 121: DESIGN STUDIO-SEMINAR 1: PLANETARY

Professor: Ross Adams

Fall 2020

This design studio-seminar introduces architecture as a trans-scalar practice that directly ties buildings, bodies, and ecosystems together. The course will involve not only the understanding and application of architectural representational techniques but also the cultivation of critical discourses that position design as a means to intervene across different scales. As a studio-seminar, students will acquire techniques through design exercises (architectural drawing and modeling) that are framed around an intellectual review of various critical spatial practices. Since at least the twentieth century, architecture’s scope of practice has widened to include landscapes, cities, regions, territories—even the entire planet itself—while also narrowing its focus to include the design of micro environments for and modulations of the human body. Working transversally across conceptual scales from the body to the planet, this course will develop critical approaches to design aimed at intervening in the spaces and processes of planetary urbanization. Each ‘scale’ we investigate will be accompanied by a corresponding design project. Please note studio work involves weekly assignments and, when possible, extracurricular events, such as field trips and studio-related talks. Computers with required software will be provided by the College, yet costs for model making and printing are not, the estimated costs is $200. Financial assistance may be available. Please contact instructor. No prior experience with architecture or drawing are required.

ARCH 111 SL: How to Build a Ruin

Professor: Stephanie Lee

Spring 2023

This studio course will introduce students to the language of architectural representation by framing the field of architecture as an everchanging process of social imagination and spatial deterioration. We will aim to understand design practice as an inherent mediation between changes in natural and cultural forces on buildings and environments. Engaging with ideas of decay, disrepair, and decrepitude, we will create fictional histories of dying industries situated in rural and suburban environments such as malls, farms, bank branches, and gas stations. Alongside readings about the legacies of capitalism and socio-economic crises, students will utilize techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, physical modeling, and compositional image-making to explore regenerative design processes and the emergence of new spatial possibilities for “ruins”. No prerequisites are necessary.

ARCH 111: Unseen Services: Reimagining the Everyday

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Fall 2022

During this studio-based course, students will learn to use architectural representation techniques to create a new vocabulary for reimagining the architecture of commonly shared, everyday services. Waiting rooms, walk-in clinics, dmv offices, bank lobbies, among other spaces have become commonplace and by extension, unquestioned and underutilized. Though often taken for granted as background spaces, we will come to understand how they are part of the construction of societal norms, and their potential to host unconvential forms of public life that we will explore and reimagine through this course. Using tools of digital drafting, site analysis, physical models, and experimental image making, students will interrogate and reimagine these everyday spaces in our built environment. Through research, discussion and design proposition, each student will rewrite the role of their selected space of everyday services and propose alternatives that speak to our evolving understanding of shared resources, policies, societal tendencies, and expectations. We will think of our sites of intervention as testing grounds for new social relations to emerge, using design to reposition these everyday services as crucial elements in a larger societal transformation. The studio will conclude by imagining the proposals as a collective set of new urban elements, repositioning our conversation as a negotiation between the unquestioned past and the multiple possible futures. No prerequisites.

ARCH 222: An Atlas of Radical Ruralism: Hard Labor, Soft Space

Professor: Stephanie Kyuyoung Lee

Fall 2022

This research and design studio will focus on rural approaches to social, racial, and economic liberation. Working collaboratively, we will create a global atlas of radical farming collectives to be later published as a zine. By looking at historical, fictional, and realized case studies, students will map out a spatial taxonomy of cooperatives, intentional communities, regenerative agriculture farms, and back-to-land initiatives. What does it mean to create an infrastructure of care, and systems of resilience within a capitalist landscape of production, extraction, and exploitation? In this course, we will construct a network of political ecologies, linking case studies like Freedom Farm Cooperative, Marinaleda, and Soul Fire Farm. Through seminars and workshops, students will learn to create and analyze each project through 2D and 3D drawings alongside diagramming and multimedia collaging. Through this collective process, students will articulate notions of “land” and “labor”, and pair them with new dialogues on how the rural countryside operates as a site for radical forms of collective living.  No Prerequisites. Please email Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco ([email protected]) for inquiries.

ARCH 130: Domestic Agents: Open Practices Workshop I

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Fall 2022

In this half-semester design workshop, students will create ‘domestic agents’–spatial objects which question the norms and rituals of our everyday lives through design tools and inquisitive disruption. We will begin by reorienting our expectations of domestic spaces by considering the things around us and our relationships to them. We will encounter these against a series of case studies—architectural precedents and historical places—which may allow us to understand how societal expectations of domestic design have emerged and transformed. From there, we will seek to reimagine the home towards more inclusive, provocative and liberating futures. The course will privilege new family compositions, accommodating new social configurations, rather than our inherited one. We will design our ‘domestic agents’ using experimental digital drawing techniques to create our own visual language. This class meets for the first half of the semester. No prerequisites.

ARCH 211: Little Blue Marble: Letters to the earth

Professor: Thena Tak

Fall 2022

Through a series of carefully selected texts, this seminar focuses on building better relationships with our planet by engaging areas of discourse that actively and intimately connect us to the natural world.  In architecture, our relationship to the natural world has been framed through many lenses – most familiar is perhaps through the more clinical lens of technology and performance.  Little Blue Marble however, foregrounds empathy, attentiveness, and participation as ways to bring us in better communion with the earth and perhaps, this form of relation may allow for an alternative set of cultural and social practices within architecture that shift our discipline’s dominant modes of thinking and being.  A few key texts that will help guide this conversation include Robin Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass, Robert Macfarlane’s Underland, and Slow Spatial Reader: Chronicles of Radical Affection edited by Carolyn F. Strauss.  In addition to readings and discussions, Little Blue Marble will ask students to create letters to the earth throughout the term.  These letters will also take on varied expressions and forms through writing and ‘open’ drawing, i.e. a range of drawing forms, from digital to analogue methods, will be welcome.  The making of these letters will be opportunities for students to rethink language, representation, and storytelling as a way to help us build literacy with the more-than-human world. No prerequisites required. Please email Ross Exo Adams ([email protected]) for inquiries.

ARCH 130: PERSPECTIVAL SPECULATIONS: OPEN PRACTICES WORKSHOP I

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Spring 2022

This one-month workshop will run from February 2nd to March 2nd and introduces drawing techniques to investigate the inherited conditions of our constructed environment and to speculate on its future. Throughout the workshop, students will create a full-scale perspectival drawing to reveal aspects of our environment that have come together not by intention, but by chance. With this, we will construct an alternative architectural language which measures, recomposes, and acknowledges our built environment as an accumulation of codes, patents, systems and legal frameworks, in service of proposing new opportunities. Each student will isolate an intersection of built space around campus (mechanical, structural, material, open to closed, corner, hallway, gap, etc.) and productively work to collapse its boundaries. Through readings (both from architecture and our own interpretations) and technical documents such as building codes and patents, students will name their constructed context, and draw over and around the existing site as a means to transform it. This class invites students from all backgrounds to engage with the fundamentals of architectural language. The course will conduct a series of drawing workshops and short exercises testing physical and conceptual space through digital 2D/3D modelling, drafting and image collaging. The final installation of the course will result in full scale perspective drawings and collages installed on the sites around campus. NO PREREQUISITES REQUIRED. For inquiries, contact Ivonne Santoyo Orozco, isantoyoorozco@bard.edu

ARCH 221: INSTITUTIONS FOR PLANETARY FICTIONS

Professor: Ross Adams

Spring 2022

What can we learn when we approach architecture as a ‘planetary’ practice? Aside from opening up new scales of design or shifting our focus to ecological concerns, how does this perspective fundamentally alter what it means to practice architecture? This design studio-seminar is an effort to introduce architecture as a worldmaking practice by acknowledging its inherently fictional capacity to imagine ways of being—modes of existence that depart from our present world. Unsettling notions that have underpinned architectural thought for centuries—private property, territory, racial capitalism, terra nullius—the aim of this studio-seminar is to approach architecture from alternate sites of inquiry that reveal it to be, more than anything else, a technology that mediates our relation to the world. Our work will be to design institutions for planetary fictions, architectural interventions that seek to instigate public imaginaries around sites of common existence—air, water, soil, forest, clouds—as a basis to exploit the narrative and fictional capacity of architecture at a moment of climatic and cultural transformation. We will develop our planetary fictions through a network of readings, films, discussions, collective design work, image making and invited guest lectures. Prerequisite for this course is ARCH 111 or permission from the professor. Please note studio work involves weekly assignments and, when possible, extracurricular events, such as field trips and studio-related talks. Computers with required software will be provided by the College.

ARCH 322: LEXICON OF EVERYDAY FUTURES

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Spring 2022

Where is the line between a presentation of proposed use (built space) and a presentation of potential use (exhibited space)? This design studio-seminar collapses the distinction between curating and creating by designing an exhibition, as well as the objects to be exhibited. By constructing our own vocabulary of contexts, codes, systems, and details of architecture, we will examine components of built space at multiple scales through a series of evolving models. We will reframe the institutional space of the gallery as a site of intellectual and creative production itself, and collapse the boundary between specified collections and our everyday context.  Through a series of experimental workshops our focus will be on ubiquitous elements of space which inhabit most projects, but whose agency is usually anonymous (fire codes, mechanical systems, utilities, for example). Over the semester, we will iterate scaled physical models and interchange their roles between gallery and architectural mock up, speculative object and utilitarian element. The semester will culminate in a built exhibition which intends to open up architecture as a future practice that can more readily accept itself as a collective/collected environment. Prerequisites ARCH 111 or permission from the program. Email [email protected]

ARCH 240: ARCHITECTURAL ENTANGLEMENTS WITH LABOR

Professor: Ivonne Santoyo Orozco

Spring 2022

Architecture is both the product of labor and the organizer of its relations, yet often these issues remain overshadowed by aesthetic considerations and the broader discourse of design. In shifting the question of labor in architecture to the foreground, this course invites students to reflect on the spatio-political role architecture has played in mediating bodies, work and capital. To do this, we will analyze contemporary transformations to paradigmatic sites of work (offices, factories, tech campuses), as well as the many spaces that have been produced to feed architectural production and its endless cycles of extraction (camps, slums, mines), or the architecture that reproduces forms of maintenance (houses, squares, resorts). We will analyze a diverse set of contemporary and historical architectural precedents against a heterogenous landscape of voices from Maurizio Lazzarato, Silvia Federici, Mierle Laderman Ukeless, David Harvey, Peggy Deamer, Mabel O. Wilson, among others. The course will unfold in a combination of lectures and seminars. There are no exams but students are expected to complete weekly assignments, a midterm and a final project. This is an OSUN class and is open to Bard students as well as students from multiple OSUN partner institutions.

ARCH/ART 126: ED MAPPING: YOU ARE HERE

Professor: Ellen Driscoll

Spring 2022

Maps have been dynamic visual and conceptual inspiration for many artists.  In this class, we will work with drawing and sculptural installation to investigate the translation of scale and data to abstraction inherent in the art of mapping.  We will study a range of contemporary artists around the world for whom maps are central to their artistic practice. We will study the visual strategies, content, and context of maps in these artist’s works. We will also look at a rich range of historical maps from Polynesian navigation charts to the soundless silk maps of World War 2. The work of Katherine Harmon, Rebecca Solnit, W.E. B. DuBois, the counter-maps of the Black Panthers, and the Indigenous Mapping Collective, among others will form foundations for our research and artistic exploration. The 1000-acre campus of Bard will be our laboratory for focused research and for generating three visual projects. This is an Engaged Liberal Arts & Sciences (ELAS) course. In this course you will be given the opportunity to bridge theory to practice while engaging a community of interest throughout the semester. A significant portion of ELAS learning takes place outside of the classroom: students learn through engagement with different geographies, organizations, and programs in the surrounding communities or in collaboration with partners from Bard’s national and international networks. To learn more please click here.

ARCH/ARTH 234: OF UTOPIAS

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Spring 2022

This class explores the theory and practice of utopia from an architectural perspective. Utopias have always been imagined through a variety of mediums like the manifesto, the blueprint, and visual and performing arts. The course investigates the manifold scales of utopian articulation and realization, from compound communities to projects designing the entire globe, and from unrealized proposals to intentional communes of co-liberation. The class will use the concept of utopia to map out the ways that men and women have sought to transform the spatial, psychic, and social landscapes they inhabited. What can we learn from the utopian imperative? What is the shape of utopia? How should we understand the relationship between thought and practice, hope and disappointment, idealism and realism? Projects presented range from early industrial colonies, socialist utopias, Christian communities, and anarchist utopias to shopping malls, factories, and afrofuturism. The projects will be discussed in conjunction with major texts by Sir Thomas More, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Karl Marx, Robert Owen, Louis Marin, to name a few. Course requirements involve short assignments, class presentations and a final paper. AHVC Requirements: Modern, Americas

ARCH/ARTH 234: OF UTOPIAS

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Spring 2022

This class explores the theory and practice of utopia from an architectural perspective. Utopias have always been imagined through a variety of mediums like the manifesto, the blueprint, and visual and performing arts. The course investigates the manifold scales of utopian articulation and realization, from compound communities to projects designing the entire globe, and from unrealized proposals to intentional communes of co-liberation. The class will use the concept of utopia to map out the ways that men and women have sought to transform the spatial, psychic, and social landscapes they inhabited. What can we learn from the utopian imperative? What is the shape of utopia? How should we understand the relationship between thought and practice, hope and disappointment, idealism and realism? Projects presented range from early industrial colonies, socialist utopias, Christian communities, and anarchist utopias to shopping malls, factories, and afrofuturism. The projects will be discussed in conjunction with major texts by Sir Thomas More, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Karl Marx, Robert Owen, Louis Marin, to name a few. Course requirements involve short assignments, class presentations and a final paper. AHVC Requirements: Modern, Americas

ARCH 130: LANDSCAPE DEVICES FOR A CHANGING CLIMATE: OPEN PRACTICES WORKSHOP

Professor: Montserrat Bonvehi-Rosich

Fall 2021

This intensive workshop will run from Sept 10 to Oct 4.

The effects of a changing climate on the environment around us cannot be entirely foreseen. While there is abundant information on how the climate might change given different economic and political scenarios, no one knows with any certainty how these changes will affect the plants, animals, soils, and complex ecosystem interactions that we depend on locally. While environmental sensing at a planetary scale has alerted us to this condition, a more local approach to monitoring environmental change is needed. This approach must engage with existing reservoirs of vernacular knowledge, bodily practices of careful observation, and a new architectural grammar for registering landscape change. In this short course we will design our own sensing devices to be deployed at the scale of a tree, a house, a lake, or a small forest. Each design will combine a sensor with a protocol for how to collect environmental data. By using sensors like cameras, thermometers, Ph meters, and our own bodily observations of the world, we will create high-resolution, if not necessarily high-tech drawings and images of environmental change. Through a direct engagement with local sites, we will test our insights and design proposals for how to engage with the condition of continuous change in the environment. No prerequisites are required, however students interested in this course should note that the nature of this intensive workshop requires you to be available during the 4 weekends of the course for field trips, workshops and extracurricular activities. Estimated cost of supplies: 50-100USD. Please email Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco ([email protected]) for inquiries.

ARCH/LIT 2213: BUILDING STORIES

Professor: Peter L’Official

Fall 2021

Cities and their surrounds have long been fertile grounds for the construction of narrative. This course examines relationships between narratives and their settings by employing conceptual frameworks borrowed from architectural studies and histories of the built environment. Weekly discussions of a wide range of texts—literary and otherwise—will be structured around building typologies and common tropes of urban planning: the row-house brownstone, the apartment building, the skyscraper, the suburban or rural house, and the arteries of linkage between them. We will read each set of texts as narratives of place, space, and architecture to discover what, if any, architectures of narrative may undergird or influence them. We will consider to what extent geography and landscape shape culture and identity; we’ll chart relationships between race, class, gender, and the environment as articulated by the city and related regions; and we will explore notions of public and private space and our ever-mutable understandings of what it means to be “urban.” Texts will include novels, essays, films, visual art, and graphic novels. Authors may include: Alison Bechdel, Sarah Broom, June Jordan, Rem Koolhaas, Ben Lerner, Kevin Lynch, Paule Marshall, Zadie Smith, D.J. Waldie, Colson Whitehead.

ARCH/WRIT 354: PLUNDERING THE AMERICAS: ON VIOLENCE AGAINST LAND AND BODIES

Professor: Valeria Luiselli

Fall 2021

This course focuses on the histories of extractivism and violence against land and against the female body in the Americas, centering on ways in which writing, art and activism have responded to systemic violence across the continent. We will be looking at work emerging across several different languages and cultures in the continent and thinking about their hemispheric intersections as well as about their disconnects. Some of the thinkers, authors and artists we will be engaging with are Aimé Césaire, Natalie DÍaz, Dolores Dorantes, Layli Longsoldier, Fred Moten, Yasnaya Elena Aguilar, and Vivir Quintana, as well as several art collectives. For each class session, students are expected to prepare a written response in the form of a developed question or questions about the readings; these should be concise (not more than a page) and geared to spur our discussion. Students will also work on short, prompt-based exercises, trying to connect the trans-hemispheric questions and issues that we explore in class. All students will work on a final project, which can range from a traditional non-fictional piece, to a sound-piece, to a combination of textual and visual explorations, to a collection of short-form interconnected pieces.

ARCH 111: ARCHITECTURE AS MEDIA

Professor: Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco

Spring 2021

This studio-based course introduces students to architectural tools of communication while presenting architecture as a field that communicates not only technical knowledge, but public imaginaries, spatial aesthetics of popular culture and contested ideas. In this way, the course will teach students basic architectural tools of representation as a situated practice of aesthetic production. Students will learn and practice techniques of contemporary digital drafting, diagramming, mapping, modeling and image-making, all of which will be carefully positioned against a survey of paradigmatic moments in the history of architecturally-related visual cultures. Thus, it will span a series of design technique workshops across a range of lectures ranging from the historical emergence of the floorplan, to contextualizing the collages of El Lissitzky to the sci-fi animations of Archigram to the Marxist photocollages of Superstudio to the CGI-rendered culture of late capitalist architecture to the activism of Architecture Lobby, Forensic Architecture and WBYA?, among other crucial episodes in the history of architectural media. Studio work involves weekly assignments. When possible, a field trip will be organized. Estimated costs for studio related assignments and activities is $200. Financial assistance may be available. Please contact instructor. No prior experience required.

ARCH/HIST 2510: ENVIRONMENTAL HISTORIES OF THE RECENT UNITED STATES

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2021

This course critically explores the history of the twenty-and twenty-first century United States through the country’s natural and built environments. Moving chronologically, we consistently ask what the relationship is between nature, labor, and capital, and what the relationship is between space, place, and race. This course most closely speaks to students interested in federal and state environmental policies, activism regarding disability and health rights, fights over urban environmental concerns, perspectives from the North American West, and the history of transnational racial, indigenous, and environmental justice movements.

ARCH/ EUS 121: DESIGN STUDIO-SEMINAR 1: PLANETARY

Professor: Ross Adams

Fall 2020

This design studio-seminar introduces architecture as a trans-scalar practice that directly ties buildings, bodies, and ecosystems together. The course will involve not only the understanding and application of architectural representational techniques but also the cultivation of critical discourses that position design as a means to intervene across different scales. As a studio-seminar, students will acquire techniques through design exercises (architectural drawing and modeling) that are framed around an intellectual review of various critical spatial practices. Since at least the twentieth century, architecture’s scope of practice has widened to include landscapes, cities, regions, territories—even the entire planet itself—while also narrowing its focus to include the design of micro environments for and modulations of the human body. Working transversally across conceptual scales from the body to the planet, this course will develop critical approaches to design aimed at intervening in the spaces and processes of planetary urbanization. Each ‘scale’ we investigate will be accompanied by a corresponding design project. Please note studio work involves weekly assignments and, when possible, extracurricular events, such as field trips and studio-related talks. Computers with required software will be provided by the College, yet costs for model making and printing are not, the estimated costs is $200. Financial assistance may be available. Please contact instructor. No prior experience with architecture or drawing are required.

ARCH/ARTH/ EUS/ HR 307: CONTESTED SPACES

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Fall 2020

During the 19th and 20th century, streets, kitchens, schools, and ghettos were the spaces of political conflict and social transformation. Often these spaces are studied as sites of contestation, where old pedagogical, medical, institutional paradigms witness the emergence of new. This course will focus on these spaces of contestation and discus show objects and buildings in dialogue construct new ideas about class, gender, and race. Readings by Chantal Mouffee, Hannah Arendt, Antony Vidler, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Michel Foucault will provide us with analytical tools and theoretical frameworks to address those actors excluded from history, problematizing agency and authorship in art and architecture. The class assignments include weekly responses, collaborative projects on the course website, and a final paper. The class is taught in collaboration with the University of Michigan and Michigan State University. AHVC distribution: 1800-Present/America.

ARCH/FILM 225: 3D ANIMATION

Professor: Ben Coonley

Fall 2020

In this course, students are introduced to processes for creating moving image artworks using 3D animation software and its ancillary technologies. Topics include: the basics of 3D modeling and animation, 3D scanning, and creative use of other technologies that allow artists to combine real and virtual spaces. Weekly readings reflect on the psychological, cultural, and aesthetic impacts of the increasingly prevalent use of computer-generated imagery in contemporary media. Students are not assumed to have any previous experience with 3D animation. This production class fulfills a moderation/major requirement. This course will be taught in person.  Students studying in-person and remotely will be accommodated. Students studying remotely should consult the instructor for details.

ARCH/WRIT/ HR 313: IMAGINATION UNDER SIEGE

Professor: Valeria Luiselli

Fall 2020

This course focuses on re-imagining processes of documenting violence and writing about it: political, environmental, racial, and gender-based violence, among others. We will be reading an array of authors –such as Ursula K Le Guin, Anne Carson, Dolores Dorantes, Ernesto Cardenal, Maria Zambrano, and Aimé Césaire– and will be looking at work emerging from other disciplines, such as soundscapes, architecture, land art, alternative mappings, as well as forms of protest and collective organizing. Students will work on fragmentary and hybrid forms of prose, in search for new ways of exploring imagination as both a tool for political resistance and as an end in itself. During the semester, students in “Imagination Under Siege” will also meet with Ann Lauterbach’s course “The Entangled Imagination,” to converse/discuss/collaborate on the ways in which imaginative thinking is a necessary tool in resisting and finding alternatives to authoritarian governments, surveillance capitalism, and climate emergency, among the realities we are facing today.

Art History and Visual Culture

ARTH 318: Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives (Part 1)

Professor: Anne Chen

Spring 2023

What silences do archaeological archives unintentionally preserve? In what ways do power and privilege influence the creation and shape of archaeological archives, and dictate who has access to them? How might new technologies help us begin to rectify inequities of access? Once called by its excavators the “Pompeii of the East,” the ancient archaeological site of Dura-Europos (Syria) preserves evidence of what everyday life was like in an ancient Roman city. The site is home to the earliest Christian church building yet found, the most elaborately decorated ancient synagogue known to date, and testifies to the ways in which ancient religions and cultures intermingled and inspired one another. Yet since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011, the site has been irreparably compromised for future archaeological exploration. More than ever, our knowledge and understanding of the site will depend almost entirely upon archival information collected in the course of archaeological excavations that took place 100 years ago when Syria was under French colonial occupation. In this hands-on practicum course focused on the case-study of this fascinating archaeological site, students will not only learn what we know of Dura-Europos as it was in antiquity, but will also think critically about issues central to the use and development of archival resources more generally. Coursework will center around firsthand engagement with data, artifacts, and archival materials from the site, and will allow students the opportunity to develop guided research projects that ultimately contribute toward the goal of improving the site’s accessibility and intelligibility to users worldwide. The methods and critical perspectives explored in this class will be particularly relevant to students interested in exploring careers in GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museum) fields. Class meetings will occur approximately eight times during the semester (precise meeting schedule to be set at the beginning of the semester). AHVC distribution: Ancient.

ARTH 320: Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives (Part 2)

Professor: Anne Chen

Spring 2023

This section is intended for students who have taken Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives (Part 1) in a previous semester and wish to expand upon the research completed in the previous term. Coursework includes a presentation and a final research paper. Class meetings will occur approximately eight times during the semester (precise meeting schedule to be set at the beginning of the semester). AHVC distribution: Ancient.

ARTH 306: Deconstructing the Historic Site: The Lab at Montgomery Place

Professor: Susan Merriam

Spring 2023

Can we radically reimagine the traditional historic site for the twenty-first century? That question will be our focus in this course, which will use Bard’s Montgomery Place as a laboratory to experiment with ideas about exhibitions, historical narratives, and archives. In the early weeks of the semester we’ll consider the origins and reception of historic sites, and then turn our attention to the house, grounds, and outbuildings at Montgomery Place. Topics animating our discussions will include: the relevance of the site to contemporary life; the relationship between center and periphery; the types of historical narratives we might reimagine; the way we value, display, describe, and archive objects. Course work will include object and archive research, writing, and curating. Our work will be publicized on a course website designed to engage the public in our experiments, and will thus create a new archive for the site. Open to all moderated students. AHVC distribution: Modern, Americas.

ARTH 304: Minor Figures: Architecture and Biography

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Spring 2023

What can we learn about the built environment and its politics from someone’s biography? What kind of evidence and stories lie within the personal? Building on Saidiya Hartman’s experiments with speculative histories for “minor figures”, this course foregrounds intersectional and feminist methodologies in the study of women’s lives and their role in architecture. We will use the life of Afro-French architect Christine Benglia (1936-2020) as a lens to examine the role that biography and personal narratives can play in recovering marginalized voices and positionalities in the production of space. Students will engage in work with primary sources – Benglia’s personal papers, oral history records, correspondence, sketches – in order to uncover the perspective of a black, middle-class woman from France learning, teaching, and working as an architect in the United States during the post-World War II period. The goal will be to extrapolate the larger framework and questions around gender, race, and class that shaped postwar American architecture and art from Benglia’s personal and intimate world of objects and words. To help us in this exploration, we will be using as our lens theoretical texts by Angela Davis, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Michel Foucault, Saidiya Hartman, Gloria Anzaldúa, among others. The course will culminate in the collaborative design of a website and an exhibition, involving also independent research and writing. Art History and Visual Culture Requirements: Modern, Americas.

ARTH 204: Art and Experiment in Early Modern Europe

Professor: Susan Merriam

Spring 2023

This course is a meditation on the meaning and histories of artistic experimentation in early modern Europe (1500-1800). At this time, art and science were often intricately connected, and artists took for granted the notion that they could manipulate and experiment with materials (oil paint for example), techniques (such as printmaking), and conceptual approaches to art making. Some of the areas we will examine include anatomical studies, optical experiments, and the use of materials and techniques. Questions we will pursue: What is meant by “visual experiment”?  How might artistic failure be generative? How did artistic experiments shape practices we would now consider to be located solely in the realm of science, such as anatomical study? What is the relationship between experiment and risk?  How might we compare artistic experiments in the early modern period to those undertaken in our own? As we study artistic experiment, we will create our own visual experiments using both old and new technologies. A highlight will be working with a life-sized camera obscura. This course satisfies the Experimental Humanities core course requirement for “History of the Experiment.” AHVC distribution: Modern, Europe.

ARTH 129: Asian Art in the Global Maritime Trade, c. 1500-1800

Professor: Heeryoon Shin

Fall 2022

This course will examine the global interconnections of art and material culture in the early modern period (c. 1500-1800) through networks of empires, missionaries, and long-distance trade. We will focus on the circulation of Asian objects across Asia, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the New World, and trace the ways in which their mobility led to new uses and meanings and contributed to the growth of a shared visual and material culture. Using examples drawn from the luxurious moving goods of the early modern period, including blue and white porcelain, lacquerware, textiles and ivory, we will explore techniques and production, trade and circulation, and histories of consumption, collecting and display. The course seeks to move beyond more conventional Eurocentric approaches of West looking East to better understand the complexity of global objects in the early modern world. Coursework includes exams, a paper, and a final group project.

ARTH 289: Rights and the Image

Professor: Susan Merriam

Fall 2022

This course examines the relationship between visual culture and human rights. It considers a wide range of visual media (photography, painting, sculpture), as well as aspects of visuality (surveillance, profiling). We will use case studies ranging in time from the early modern period (practices in which the body was marked to measure criminality, for example), to the present day. Within this framework, we will study how aspects of visual culture have been used to advocate for human rights, as well as how images and visual regimes have been used to suppress human rights. An important part of the course will be to consider the role played by reception in shaping a discourse around human rights, visuality, and images. Subjects to be addressed include: the nature of evidence; documentation and witness; stereotyping; racial profiling; censorship; iconoclasm; surveillance; advocacy images; signs on the body; visibility and invisibility.

ARTH 2030: Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives Practicum

Professor: Anne Hunnell Chen

Fall 2022

What silences do archaeological archives unintentionally preserve? In what ways do power and privilege influence the creation and shape of archaeological archives, and dictate who has access to them? How might new technologies help us begin to rectify inequities of access? Once called by its excavators the “Pompeii of the East,” the ancient archaeological site of Dura-Europos (Syria) preserves evidence of what everyday life was like in an ancient Roman city. The site is home to the earliest Christian church building yet found, the most elaborately decorated ancient synagogue known to date, and testifies to the ways in which ancient religions and cultures intermingled and inspired one another. Yet since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011, the site has been irreparably compromised for future archaeological exploration. More than ever, our knowledge and understanding of the site will depend almost entirely upon archival information collected in the course of archaeological excavations that took place 100 years ago when Syria was under French colonial occupation. In this hands-on practicum course focused on the case-study of this fascinating archaeological site, students will not only learn what we know of Dura-Europos as it was in antiquity, but will also think critically about issues central to the use and development of archival resources more generally. Coursework will center around firsthand engagement with data, artifacts, and archival materials from the site, and will allow students the opportunity to develop guided research projects that ultimately contribute toward the goal of improving the site’s accessibility and intelligibility to users worldwide. The methods and critical perspectives explored in this class will be particularly relevant to students interested in exploring careers in GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museum) fields. Class meetings will occur approximately eight times during the semester (precise meeting schedule to be set at the beginning of the semester).

ARTH 316 Multi-Media Gothic

Professor: Katherine Boivin

Fall 2019, Fall 2022

Although scholarship on medieval art has often been separated by medium, Gothic church programs were actually multi-media spaces with meaning transcending the individual work of art.  This class, therefore, explores a wide range of artistic media, including stained glass, painting, sculpture, architecture, textiles, and metalwork, as they contributed to the dynamic space of the Gothic church.  In addition, it considers modern technologies for representing these complex programs, drawing parallels between the explosion of images in the Gothic era and the role of media today.  Structured around the investigation of case-study churches throughout western Europe—with a particular focus on France and Germany from the 13th through 15th centuries—this class will cover topics including architectural structuring of space, image placement, dramatic performances of the liturgy, the “economy of salvation,” and cultural notions of decorum.  Coursework includes weekly writing assignments, active in-class discussion, and a final 15-page research paper. AHVC distributions: Ancient/Europe

ARTH 204: ART AND EXPERIMENT IN EARLY MODERN EUROPE

Professor: Susan Merriam

Spring 2022

This course is a meditation on the meaning and histories of artistic experimentation in early modern Europe (1500-1800). At this time, art and science were often intricately connected, and artists took for granted the notion that they could manipulate and experiment with materials (oil paint for example), techniques (such as printmaking), and conceptual approaches to art making. Some of the areas we will examine include anatomical studies, optical experiments, and the use of materials and techniques. Questions we will pursue: What is meant by “visual experiment”?  How might artistic failure be generative? How did artistic experiments shape practices we would now consider to be located solely in the realm of science, such as anatomical study? What is the relationship between experiment and risk?  How might we compare artistic experiments in the early modern period to those undertaken in our own? As we study artistic experiment, we will create our own visual experiments using both old and new technologies. A highlight will be working with a life-sized camera obscura. This course satisfies the Experimental Humanities core course requirement for “History of the Experiment.”

ARTH 107: ARTS OF KOREA

Professor: Heeryoon Shin

Spring 2022

This interdisciplinary course explores the history of Korea from ancient times to the present through the lens of art and culture. We will examine intersections of art, religion, and politics in Korea, as well as Korea’s interactions with the larger region of East Asia and beyond. The first half of the course is dedicated to canonical artworks from premodern Korea, designated as national “treasures” by the South Korean government; the second half will shift the focus to the modern and contemporary period to critically examine how such a “canon” and dominant narratives of Korean art history were formulated. Topics include Buddhist art and ritual; landscape and travel; material culture and collecting; female artists and representations of women; visual culture and politics under the Japanese colonial rule; monuments and anti-monuments; art as political activism; and contemporary Korean art within the global art world. Coursework includes exams, weekly responses on Brightspace, a 3-4 page paper, and a digital group project.

ARTH 315: MATERIAL WORLDS AND SOCIAL IDENTITIES

Professor: Julia Rosenbaum

Spring 2022

How does the world of interior spaces, their furnishings and decorative objects, tell us stories, assert values, project identities? Through an engaged-learning experience with three early twentieth-century National Park sites in the Hudson Valley—the Vanderbilt Mansion, the Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Eleanor Roosevelt’s Home at Val-Kill—this seminar explores both the relationship between objects and identities and issues of consumption and appearance. The course will focus on American decorative arts from the late nineteenth into the twentieth century addressing theories about the purpose, meaning, and value of design and decoration as well as key movements, designers, and artists. Visiting the sites and collections regularly, we will combine the scholarly study of aesthetic ideals and social practices with hands-on examination of specific objects in the museum collections.  Key themes to be addressed include gender and the body; consumer capitalism and labor; political/class/queer identities; ethics and aesthetics.

ARTH 213: POWER, PIETY, AND PLEASURE: THE ART OF THE MUGHAL EMPIRE

Professor: Heeryoon Shin

Spring 2022

This course explores the art and architecture of the Mughal Empire (1526–1858), one of the most powerful and opulent empires in the early modern world. As prolific patrons and collectors of art, the Mughals drew upon Persian, Indian, and European sources to create new and distinctive forms of art and architecture. The rich artistic production of the Mughals and the regional courts of India include imperial palaces and tombs such as the Taj Mahal, pleasure gardens, temples and shrines at pilgrimage centers, illuminated manuscripts, lavish albums of painting and calligraphy, and embroidered, painted, and printed textiles. Together we will explore their political, social, and cultural contexts. A special emphasis will be placed on the cross-cultural interactions at the Mughal court initiated by diplomacy, trade, and religion, and how the Mughals positioned themselves globally through art and architecture. Coursework includes exams, midterm paper, and a group digital project.

ARTH 234: OF UTOPIAS

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Spring 2021, Spring 2022

This class explores the theory and practice of utopia from an architectural perspective. Utopias have always been imagined through a variety of mediums like the manifesto, the blueprint, and visual and performing arts. The course investigates the manifold scales of utopian articulation and realization, from compound communities to projects designing the entire globe, and from unrealized proposals to intentional communes of co-liberation. The class will use the concept of utopia to map out the ways that men and women have sought to transform the spatial, psychic, and social landscapes they inhabited. What can we learn from the utopian imperative? What is the shape of utopia? How should we understand the relationship between thought and practice, hope and disappointment, idealism and realism? Projects presented range from early industrial colonies, socialist utopias, Christian communities, and anarchist utopias to shopping malls, factories, and afrofuturism. The projects will be discussed in conjunction with major texts by Sir Thomas More, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Karl Marx, Robert Owen, Louis Marin, to name a few. Course requirements involve short assignments, class presentations and a final paper. AHVC Requirements: Modern, Americas

ARTH 225: ART AND ENVIRONMENT: PERSPECTIVES ON LAND, LANDSCAPE, AND ECOLOGY

Professor: Julia Rosenbaum

Spring 2021

If we want to understand ourselves, we would do well to take a searching look at our landscapes.

                                                                –D.W. Meinig (paraphrasing Peirce Lewis), The Interpretation of Ordinary Landscapes

This course explores the relationship between the natural world and United States culture, considering specifically the visual expression of that relationship: How have Americans imagined “nature” and represented it? How have concepts of land and landscape shaped perceptions about social order, identity, and sustainability? The course provides both a historical framework for thinking about these questions as well as a contemporary perspective, particularly in the context of a potential new era known as the “Anthropocene.” Scholars in the sciences and the humanities increasingly use this term to describe the current global impact of human-dominated ecosystems. Over the semester we will examine diverse imagery, from mound-building to mapmaking to landscape painting, and explore multiple perspectives, from indigenous practices to visual tools of settler colonialism to environmental art activism. The class will engage both past and present ideas and debates about the natural world through visual and textual analysis, writing exercises, local sites, and individual research.  AHVC distribution: 1800-present, Americas

ARTH/ EUS/ HR 307: CONTESTED SPACES

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Fall 2020

During the 19th and 20th century, streets, kitchens, schools, and ghettos were the spaces of political conflict and social transformation. Often these spaces are studied as sites of contestation, where old pedagogical, medical, institutional paradigms witness the emergence of new. This course will focus on these spaces of contestation and discus show objects and buildings in dialogue construct new ideas about class, gender, and race. Readings by Chantal Mouffee, Hannah Arendt, Antony Vidler, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Michel Foucault will provide us with analytical tools and theoretical frameworks to address those actors excluded from history, problematizing agency and authorship in art and architecture. The class assignments include weekly responses, collaborative projects on the course website, and a final paper. The class is taught in collaboration with the University of Michigan and Michigan State University. AHVC distribution: 1800-Present/America.

EUS/ HR/ ARTH 314: Public Writing and the Built Environment

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Spring 2020

This course introduces students to issues concerning architecture, the built environment, and spatial justice through forms of public writing. In collaboration with the instructor, each student will focus on one area or issue such as the prison- industrial complex (as found, for example, at Rikers Island), gentrification in Newburgh, housing inequality in Chicago, the water crisis in Flint, management of nuclear waste in the Hudson, shrinking cities in the Rust Belt, and oil pipeline infrastructure on tribal lands. To mobilize interested publics and address officials, students will use Twitter; design petitions; write blog entries; interview stakeholders; write protest letters; and prepare for a public hearing. The goal will be to inform the public, raise awareness, and reclaim agency over the design and planning of our environments through writing. Combining texts from the various assignments, students will produce a final thirty-minute podcast that will live online. (Fulfills two program requirements: Modern / Europe + US)

AS/ ARTH 315: INTERIOR WORLDS

Professor: Julia Rosenbaum

Spring 2019

How does the world of interior spaces, their furnishings and decorative objects, tell us stories, assert values, project identities? Through an engaged-learning experience with three early twentieth-century National Park sites in the Hudson Valley—the Vanderbilt Mansion, the Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Eleanor Roosevelt’s Home at Val-Kill—this seminar explores both the relationship between objects and identities and issues of consumption and appearance. The course will focus on American decorative arts from the late nineteenth into the twentieth century addressing theories about the purpose, meaning, and value of design and decoration as well as key movements, designers, and artists. Visiting the sites and collections regularly, we will combine the scholarly study of aesthetic ideals and social practices with hands-on examination of specific objects in the Vanderbilt and Roosevelt museum collections. Final research projects may involve individual or group curated digital exhibitions.  Sophomores can enroll with permission of the professor. (Art History requirement: Americas, 1800 to Present) 

ARTH 287: EXPERIMENTS: ART & TECHNOLOGY

Professor: Alex Kitnick

Fall 2018

This course will explore various connections between art and technology from the 1960s up to the present day. Students will examine a wide range of writings, artworks, performances, and videos by figures including Marshall McLuhan, John McHale, Robert Rauschenberg, and Carolee Schneemann. The idea of the course is to show that both artists and theorists are involved in a common project of responding to new technologies. Questions of distribution, audience, and globalization will be of key concern. In the last weeks, we will consider how these ideas have evolved in the age of the Internet. Open to all students. Students will work on various writing assignments and class presentations. Art History Distribution: Modern

ARTH/ EUS/ PS/ IDEA 215: OF UTOPIAS

Professor: Kevin Duong, Olga Touloumi

Spring 2018

This class explores the theory and practice of utopia from an interdisciplinary perspective. Utopias have always been imagined through a variety of mediums like the manifesto, the blueprint, and visual and performing arts. The course investigates the manifold scales of utopian articulation and realization, from tiny communities to project designing the entire globe. Combining the history of political thought and architectural history, the class will use the concept of utopia to map out the ways that men and women have sought to transform the spatial, psychic, and social landscapes they inhabited. What can we learn from the utopian imperative? What is the shape of utopia? How should we understand the relationship between thought and practice, hope and disappointment, idealism and realism? Projects presented range from early industrial colonies, socialist utopias, Christian communities, and anarchist utopias to settlement housing, shopping malls, and factories. The projects will be discussed in conjunction with major texts by Sir Thomas More, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Karl Marx, Robert Owen, Louis Marin, to name a few. Apart from regular writing assignments, students will engage with creative designs, building toward a final exhibition of design projects for future utopias. The course will include a field trip to Shaker’s Village.

ARTH/ GER/ IDEA 225: 1989 ART, LITERATURE, & POLITICS IN TRANSITION

Professor: Alex Kitnick, Thomas Wild

Spring 2018

This class explores the theory and practice of utopia from an interdisciplinary perspective. Utopias have always been imagined through a variety of mediums like the manifesto, the blueprint, and visual and performing arts. The course investigates the manifold scales of utopian articulation and realization, from tiny communities to project designing the entire globe. Combining the history of political thought and architectural history, the class will use the concept of utopia to map out the ways that men and women have sought to transform the spatial, psychic, and social landscapes they inhabited. What can we learn from the utopian imperative? What is the shape of utopia? How should we understand the relationship between thought and practice, hope and disappointment, idealism and realism? Projects presented range from early industrial colonies, socialist utopias, Christian communities, and anarchist utopias to settlement housing, shopping malls, and factories. The projects will be discussed in conjunction with major texts by Sir Thomas More, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Karl Marx, Robert Owen, Louis Marin, to name a few. Apart from regular writing assignments, students will engage with creative designs, building toward a final exhibition of design projects for future utopias. The course will include a field trip to Shaker’s Village.

ARTH 337: POP ART

Professor: Alex Kitnick

Spring 2018

This course looks at Pop Art as a series of exchanges between the fine arts and mass culture; it also examines Pop as a way of responding to the increased dominance of global capital in the postwar period. The course progresses through a number of case studies, beginning with the emergence of Pop Art in England in the late 1950s. It will continue by examining Pop movements throughout the US, Germany, and South America in the 1960s. In addition to painting and sculpture, the course will examine Pop through a wide variety of media, including movies, music, and books. Artists covered in the course include EvelyneAxell, Richard Hamilton, CildoMeireles, Gerhard Richter, and Andy Warhol. Students will turn in one-page reading responses each week. Two longer papers are also required: the first, an expanded version of a response paper, is due at the midterm. The final research essay will be due at the end of the semester.  Art History distribution: Modern

Biology

BIO/ EUS 157: FOOD MICROBIOLOGY

Professor: Gabriel Peron

Fall 2023

In this course, appropriate for potential biology majors and interested non-majors, we will study the microorganisms that inhabit, create, or contaminate food. The first half of the course will introduce students to topics in food safety such as food spoilage, foodborne infections, and antibiotic resistance. In the second half of the course, students will learn how to harness the capabilities of the many microbes present in our environment to turn rotting vegetables or spoiling milk into delicious food. Students will also learn how next-generation technologies are revealing the important ecological dynamics shaping microbial communities in transforming food with possible beneficial effects on human health. Throughout the course, students will learn how to design, conduct, and analyze simple experiments while working with microbiology techniques, including DNA sequencing. No prerequisite. Students studying in-person and remotely will be accommodated.

CLAS 224: ScienceTechnology: Ancient Greece/Rome

Professor: Kassandra Miller

Spring 2020

How did ancient Greeks and Romans learn about and make sense of the world around them? And how did they use technology to change and exert control over that world? This course offers an introduction to the scientific and technological developments that took place in the ancient Mediterranean between the 6th century BCE and the 4th century CE. We will also consider the afterlives of these developments in Islamic, Enlightenment, and modern-day science. In the first half of the course, we will explore ancient scientific theories and practices in areas we would now call astronomy, physics, biology, medicine, geography, and mathematics. In the second half of the course, we will shift our focus to the technologies that ancient Greeks and Romans used to harness nature, and students will participate in a collaborative project with hands-on components. Ultimately, students in this course will deepen their understanding of how scientific theories, practical experiences, and social incentives can interact to produce different scientific and technological trends. NOTE: All readings will be in English translation, and no prior knowledge of the ancient world is required.

CMSC 141: OBJECT ORIENTED PROGRAMMING

Taught by various faculty

This course introduces students to the methodologies of object-oriented design and programming, which are used throughout the Computer Science curriculum. Students will learn how to move from informal problem statement, through increasingly precise problem specifications, to design and implementation of a solution for problems drawn from areas such as graphics, animation, simulation. Good programming and documentation habits are emphasized.

CMSC 336: GAMES SYSTEMS: PLATFORMS, PROGRAMS & POWER

Professor: Keith O’Hara

Spring 2022

This course studies games using the lens of computing systems; exploring the design and implementation of historic and modern computing systems for games, including the hardware, software, and their interface. For more than the sake of automation or communication, games have exploited a unique affordance of computers, the ability to simulate & ask questions of “what if?”  This course will go beyond only creating games, and will challenge students to critically reflect on how the architectural and programming choices in games can encode inequality and particular worldviews procedurally, as much as other game elements like visuals, audio and narrative. We will cover the low-level aspects of games platforms: graphics programming, networking, and peripherals; mid-level concerns: software engineering, design patterns, concurrency, and interfaces; and higher-level issues related to emulation, ethics, platform studies and media archaeology. Prerequisites: CMSC 201, Data Structures.

CMSC/MUS 262: TOPICS IN MUSIC SOFTWARE: INTRODUCTION TO MAX/MSP

Professor: Matthew Sargent

Spring 2022

This course will introduce students to Max/Msp, an object-oriented programming environment for real-time audio processing, digital synthesis, algorithmic composition, data sonification, and more. Students will learn fundamental concepts of digital audio and computer programming while engaging in creative projects and in-class performances. The class will include examples of Max patches found in major works of 20/21st century electroacoustic music and sound art repertoire. The course will also explore connectivity between Max and other software applications, including Max4Live. The course will conclude with a final project. Introduction to Electronic Music, or a 100-level course in Computer Science, is recommended as a prerequisite.

CMSC 226: Principles: Computing Systems

Professor: Keith O’Hara

Spring 2020

This course takes a systems perspective to the study of computers.  As our programs scale up from a single author, user, and computer to programs designed, written, maintained, and used by multiple people that run on many computers (sometimes at the same time), considerations beyond algorithms alone are magnified. Design principles and engineering practices help us cope with this complexity: version control for multiple authors, input validation for multiple (adversarial) users, build automation tools for multiple platforms, process and thread models for parallelism.  From how numbers are represented in hardware to how instruction-level parallelism and speculation can lead to bugs: the design, implementation, evaluation, safety and security of computing systems will be stressed. Students will explore computers from the ground up, using a variety of programming languages (including assembly) and tools like the command line, debuggers, and version control. Pre-requisites: Object-Oriented Programming or permission of instructor. 

CMSC/ MUSIC 262: Introduction to Max/Msp

Professor: Matthew Sargent

Spring 2020

This course will introduce students to Max/Msp, an object-oriented programming environment for real-time audio processing, digital synthesis, algorithmic composition, data sonification, and more. Students will learn fundamental concepts of digital audio and computer programming while engaging in creative projects and in-class performances. The class will include examples of Max patches found in major works of 20/21st century electroacoustic music and sound art repertoire. The course will also explore connectivity between Max and other software applications, including Max4Live. The course will conclude with a final project. Introduction to Electronic Music, or a 100-level course in Computer Science, is recommended as a prerequisite.

CMSC 335: GAMES SYSTEMS: PLATFORMS, PROGRAMS & POWER

Professor: Keith O’Hara

Spring 2021

This course studies games using the lens of computing systems; exploring the design and implementation of historic and modern computing systems for games, including the hardware, software, and their interface. For more than the sake of automation or communication, games have exploited a unique affordance of computers, the ability to simulate & ask questions of “what if?”  This course will go beyond only creating games, and will challenge students to critically reflect on how the architectural and programming choices in games can encode inequality and particular worldviews procedurally, as much as other game elements like visuals, audio and narrative. We will cover the low-level aspects of games platforms: graphics programming, networking, and peripherals; mid-level concerns: software engineering, design patterns, concurrency, and interfaces; and higher-level issues related to emulation, ethics, platform studies and media archaeology. Prerequisites: CMSC 201, Data Structures.

MUS/ CMSC 375: TOPICS IN MUSIC SOFTWARE

Professor: Matthew Sargent

Fall 2020

This course is an advanced seminar on the Max programming language and the digital signal processing of audio. Students will learn advanced concepts of digital audio and computer programming, while engaging in creative projects and in-class performances. The class will include study of the Fourier theorem, physical modeling, granular synthesis, multi-channel audio dispersion, binaural and ambisonic panning, and digital reverb design. The class will include critical discussion of electroacoustic and sound art repertoire of the 20/21st century. The course will conclude with a final project. Introduction to Max/Msp (or significant 300-level work in Computer Science) is required as a prerequisite.

EUS/ AS 310: Art, Animals & Anthropocene

Professor: Krista Caballero

Fall 2023

From species extinction to radioactive soil and climate change, we are now in the age of the Anthropocene. This recently proposed geologic period refers to the ways in which human activities have dramatically impacted and altered every ecosystem on Earth. Now in an age of mass extinction, what does it mean to visually interpret our more-than-human world and explore the often messy and complicated encounters between human and nonhuman animals? Indigenous and traditional ecological knowledges will ground our exploration as we consider the cultural, artistic, and technological implications of species decline. Our focus will include examining animal representations from caves to cages and from the living to the virtual, as well as themes of the wild and the tame, zoos, animal rights, laboratory research, and companion species. Each of these topics will be paired with an exploration of the ever-increasing presence of animals in contemporary art with particular emphasis on multimedia and inter-species installations, bio art, as well as experimental video, film, performance, and robotics. Students will work intensively to develop experimental humanities approaches that blur boundaries between physical and digital media, integrate field-based research, and experiment with interdisciplinary practices of art making in order to grapple with ways in which our understanding of other species directly relates to human self-understanding. This course is open to unmoderated and moderated students. It can be used to fulfill the American Studies Junior Seminar requirement for students moderated into that program. This course is part of the Thinking Animals Initiative, an interdivisional collaboration among students and faculty to further the understanding of animals and human-animal relationships.

AS/ EUS/ HR/ HIST 180: Technology, Labor, Capitalism

Professor: Jeanette Estruth

Fall 2023

Artificial intelligence and the knowledge economy. Computation and Credit. Satellites and social media. Philanthropy and factory flight. “Doing what you love” and digital activism. Climate change and corporate consolidation. This class will explore changes in capitalism, technology, and labor in the twentieth- and twenty-first century United States. We will learn how ideas about work and technology have evolved over time, and how these dynamic ideas and evolving tools have shaped the present day.

EUS/ AS 309: ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE: ART, SCIENCE, AND RADICAL CARTOGRAPHY

Professors: Elias Dueker & Krista Caballero

Fall 2021

We generally assume maps are objective, accurate representations of data and the world around us when, in fact, they depict the knowledge, experience, and values of the humans who draft them. As a hybrid EUS practicum + colloquium, this course will explore ways in which ecological issues are entangled with colonial histories of racism and supremacy, resource extraction and expansion through mapping. Native American scholarship will ground our exploration as we consider the impact and consequences of mapping as a tool used historically to claim ownership and invite exploitation. We will also investigate the evolution of radical cartography to counter these practices and imagine alternative mapping for more just ecological futures. A series of Indigenous scholars and activists will provide an opportunity for students to learn from experts working at the forefront of their fields to address environmental injustices locally, nationally, and internationally. These guest lectures will be paired with hands-on projects that explore mapping as a tool for environmental advocacy alongside artistic and counter-mapping approaches that experiment with ways we might communicate scientific and humanistic knowledge to a wider audience. In both theory and practice this team-taught course aims to reconsider and transform ways of engaging community science and community action through collaborative inquiry, interdisciplinary experimentation, and meaningful cross-cultural dialogue. This course is part of the Racial Justice Initiative, an interdisciplinary collaboration among students and faculty to further the understanding of racial inequality and injustice in the United States and beyond.

ARCH/ EUS 121: Design Studio-Seminar 1: Planetary

Professor: Ross Adams

Fall 2020

This design studio-seminar introduces architecture as a trans-scalar practice that directly ties buildings, bodies, and ecosystems together. The course will involve not only the understanding and application of architectural representational techniques but also the cultivation of critical discourses that position design as a means to intervene across different scales. As a studio-seminar, students will acquire techniques through design exercises (architectural drawing and modeling) that are framed around an intellectual review of various critical spatial practices. Since at least the twentieth century, architecture’s scope of practice has widened to include landscapes, cities, regions, territories—even the entire planet itself—while also narrowing its focus to include the design of micro environments for and modulations of the human body. Working transversally across conceptual scales from the body to the planet, this course will develop critical approaches to design aimed at intervening in the spaces and processes of planetary urbanization. Each ‘scale’ we investigate will be accompanied by a corresponding design project. Please note studio work involves weekly assignments and, when possible, extracurricular events, such as field trips and studio-related talks. Computers with required software will be provided by the College, yet costs for model making and printing are not, the estimated costs is $200. Financial assistance may be available. Please contact instructor. No prior experience with architecture or drawing are required.

EUS/ ARTS 135: Designing Body and World

Professor: Ross Adams

Spring 2020

This course introduces architecture through a studio-seminar hybrid. We will approach architectural design not by focusing on the production of a particular building, but by working transversally across a number of conceptual scales from the body to the planet. This trans-scalar approach aims to interrogate what it means to practice architecture as a historically, theoretically and methodologically situated field indelibly conditioned by urbanization measured at a planetary scale. Indeed, since at least the twentieth century, architecture’s scope of practice has widened to include landscapes, cities, regions, territories—even the entire planet itself—while also narrowing its focus to include the design of micro environments for and modulations of the human body. The course will allow us not only to understand the techniques and ideas emerging from these various scalar practices, but to cultivate new, critical design approaches to intervene in the spaces and processes of planetary urbanization. Each ‘scale’ we investigate will be accompanied by a corresponding design project. Among the techniques of architectural representation students will learn in the process are basic 2D and 3D CAD drawing, sketching, model making and other forms of representation. Please note studio work involves weekly assignments and, when possible, one or two social events. Computers with required software will be provided by the College, yet costs for model making and printing are not. No prior experience with architecture or drawing are required.

AS/ EUS/ HR 219: Mapping Police Violence

Professor: Kwame Holmes

Spring 2020

This class emerges from my preoccupation with the recent increase in media and political attention to extra- judicial killings by police officers in the United States. Predominant questions will include: What can we know about police violence, and what are the barriers to data transparency and distribution? What are the means–political, legal, economic, cultural– through which Western societies authorize the police to use deadly force?  Can we measure the impact of police violence on a range of exogenous factors like public health indices, adjacent property values, educational opportunities and the distribution of social services? In pursuit of answers, we will engage political theory, history, sociology, economics, and cultural studies to produce an interdisciplinary study of police violence. I use the word “produce” with great intention. Students will be tasked with producing new knowledge about police violence.  As a collective, we will use demographic analytical tools, alongside datasets from the Police Data Initiative, to spatially apprehend police violence incidents in a given city. Students will then bring their own research questions to our collectively generated maps. In that sense, we will also think critically about how to ask a research question, and how to pursue a variety of research projects.

EUS/ HR/ ARTS 220: Architectural Entanglements with Labor

Professor: Ivonne Santoyo Orozco

Spring 2020

Architecture is both the product of labor and the organizer of its relations, yet often these issues remain overshadowed by aesthetic considerations and the broader discourse of design. In shifting the question of labor in architecture to the foreground, this course invites students to reflect on the spatio-political role architecture has played in mediating bodies, work and capital. To do this, we will analyze contemporary transformations to paradigmatic sites of work (offices, factories, tech campuses), as well as the many spaces that have been produced to feed architectural production and its endless cycles of extraction (camps, slums, mines), and the architecture that reproduces forms of maintenance (houses, squares, resorts). We will analyze a diverse set of contemporary and historical architectural precedents against a heterogenous landscape of voices from Maurizio Lazzarato, Silvia Federici, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, David Harvey, Peggy Deamer, Mabel O. Wilson, among others. The course will unfold in a combination of lectures and seminars. There are no exams but students are expected to complete weekly assignments and a final project.

LIT/ AS/ EUS 3028: SOUNDSCAPES OF AMERICAN LIT

Professor: Alexandre Benson

Fall 2020

(Junior Seminar) We often use sonic terms—voice, tone, echo, resonance—to describe poetry and fiction, even as we set writing in opposition to the noisy, melodious stuff of speech and song. If this paradox poses a knotty problem for our study of literature as a medium, it also raises questions of social relation that have been central to the history of American writing: What does it mean to read and to listen in situations of radical cultural difference? How have the concepts of textuality and orality intersected with the histories of racism and other instruments of inequality? What happens to the traditional dichotomy of sound and sight when approached from the perspectives of disability studies and of environmental humanities? We will explore these questions in literary texts, musical recordings, and theoretical work in the field of sound studies and beyond. Authors and artists considered may include James Baldwin, John Cage, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Emily Dickinson, Zora Neale Hurston, Helen Keller, Abbey Lincoln, and Pauline Oliveros. Coursework will focus on practices of research, writing, revision, and collaboration that will prepare students to write senior projects in Literature and related humanities fields.

ARTH/ EUS/ HR 307: CONTESTED SPACES

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Fall 2020

During the 19th and 20th century, streets, kitchens, schools, and ghettos were the spaces of political conflict and social transformation. Often these spaces are studied as sites of contestation, where old pedagogical, medical, institutional paradigms witness the emergence of new. This course will focus on these spaces of contestation and discus show objects and buildings in dialogue construct new ideas about class, gender, and race. Readings by Chantal Mouffee, Hannah Arendt, Antony Vidler, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Michel Foucault will provide us with analytical tools and theoretical frameworks to address those actors excluded from history, problematizing agency and authorship in art and architecture. The class assignments include weekly responses, collaborative projects on the course website, and a final paper. The class is taught in collaboration with the University of Michigan and Michigan State University. AHVC distribution: 1800-Present/America.

EUS/ HR/ ARTH 314: Public Writing and the Built Environment

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Spring 2020

This course introduces students to issues concerning architecture, the built environment, and spatial justice through forms of public writing. In collaboration with the instructor, each student will focus on one area or issue such as the prison- industrial complex (as found, for example, at Rikers Island), gentrification in Newburgh, housing inequality in Chicago, the water crisis in Flint, management of nuclear waste in the Hudson, shrinking cities in the Rust Belt, and oil pipeline infrastructure on tribal lands. To mobilize interested publics and address officials, students will use Twitter; design petitions; write blog entries; interview stakeholders; write protest letters; and prepare for a public hearing. The goal will be to inform the public, raise awareness, and reclaim agency over the design and planning of our environments through writing. Combining texts from the various assignments, students will produce a final thirty-minute podcast that will live online. (Fulfills two program requirements: Modern / Europe + US)

FILM 203: DIGITAL ANIMATION

Professor: Jacqueline Goss

Spring 2024

In this course we will make video and web-based projects using digital animation and compositing programs (primarily Adobe Animate and After Effects). The course is designed to help students develop a facility with these tools and to find personal animating styles that surpass the tools at hand. We will work to reveal techniques and aesthetics associated with digital animation that challenge conventions of storytelling, editing, figure/ground relationship, and portrayal of the human form. To this end, we will refer to diverse examples of animating and collage from film, music, writing, photography, and painting. Prerequisite: familiarity with a nonlinear video-editing program. This production course fulfills a moderation/major requirement. Registration open to Sophomores and above.

FILM 244: The Conversation

Professor: A. Sayeeda Moreno

Fall 2022

Engaging and activating autobiographical and biographical methodology to collect, observe, and adapt dialogue, this live-action production class will investigate approaches to storytelling and the narrative form with a goal towards identifying the subtext within given dialogue scenes. Students will locate “the lie” in the spoken word and “the truth” through visual indicators. Reworking scenes over the course of a semester, students will discover how their filmmaking choices either support, undermine or contradict what their characters are saying. Students will consider the impact of screenwriting, casting, improvisational rehearsal techniques, actor and camera movement, camera placement, and editing on a particular scene to build observational cadence and highlight unspoken “truths.” This course fulfills a moderation/major requirement. Registration open to Sophomores and above.

FILM 221: FOUND FOOTAGE AND APPROPRIATION

Professor: Laura Parnes, Fall 2021; Ben Coonley, Fall 2022

This course surveys the history of appropriation in experimental media from the found footage, cut-up and collage films of the 1950’s through the Lettrists and Situationists and up to current artistic and activist production efforts such as culture jamming, game hacking, sampling, hoaxing, resistance, interference and tactical media intervention.  The spectrum of traditions which involve the strategic  recontextualizing of educational, industrial and broadcast sources, projects that detourn official ‘given’ meaning, re-editing of outtakes, recycling of detritus, and a variety of works of piracy and parody which skew/subvert media codes will be examined for their contribution to the field.  Issues regarding gender, identity, media and net politics, technology, copyright and aesthetics will be addressed as raised by the work.  Students are required to produce their own work in video, gaming, installation, collage and/or audio through a series of assignments and a final project. This course fulfills a moderation/major requirement. Registration open to Sophomores and above.

FILM 256: Writing the Film

Professor: A. Sayeeda Moreno

Fall 2022

An introductory writing course that looks at creative approaches to writing short films and dialogue scenes. There will be writing and research exercises, screenings, discussions, readings and script critiques. The course will focus on researching and developing ideas and structure for stories, building characters, poetic strategies and writing comedic, realistic and awkward romantic dialogue. This is an elective course for Film and Electronic Arts and does not fulfill moderation/major requirement

FILM 371: Media in the Age of AI

Professor: Joshua Glick

Fall 2022

This class explores the vibrant intersection between different forms of media and artificial intelligence (AI). Topics include deepfakes and disinformation, gaming and the metaverse, social media and networked activism, installation and public art, experimental film and Hollywood blockbusters. Students will learn the ways in which AI can be used for malicious purposes as well as to push aesthetic boundaries and to serve the civic good. Key projects range from the data art of the Refik Anadol studio to the online satire of Bill Posters to deepfakes used in the war in Ukraine. The course will introduce students to new tools and platforms and will involve experimenting with AI-enabled media, all the while reflecting on the ethical, social, and political ramifications of these technologies. This course fulfills a Film and Electronic Arts moderation requirement.

FILM 203: PERFORMANCE AND VIDEO

Professor: Laura Parnes

Spring 2022

This course explores intersections of video and performance art. Course participants develop strategies for exploiting video’s most fundamental property: its ability to reproduce a stream of real-time synchronized images and sounds. How does video technology mediate between on-screen performer and audience? How can artists interested in creating critical and self-reflexive media respond to video’s immediacy and “liveness”? How can performance artists use video playback devices, displays, projectors, interactive elements, and live video mixing software to shape and enhance live art? The first half of the course concentrates on the creation of performance “tapes” (or tape-less video recordings) and the history of experimental video focused on performance for the camera. The second half of the course concentrates on the use of video as a central component within live performance art. We will read about and carry on a sustained conversation about the cultural and psychological impact of video technology on subjectivity and conceptions of the artist as “medium.” Readings on and viewings of work by Marina Abramović, Vito Acconci, Laurie Anderson, Trisha Baga, John Baldessari, Paul Chan, Patty Chang, Chris Burden, Coco Fusco,  Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Wynne Greenwood, Nancy Holt, Joan Jonas, Miranda July, Mike Kelley, George Kuchar, Kalup Linzy, Tata Mateik, Shana Moulton, Jayson Musson, Bruce Nauman, Nam Jun Paik, Sondra Perry, Walid Raad, Martha Rosler, Jacolby Satterwhite, Michael Smith, Ryan Trecartin, Andy Warhol, William Wegman, among others. This production course fulfills a moderation/major requirement.

FILM 312: ADVANCED SCREENWRITING

Professor: A. Sayeeda Moreno

Spring 2022

An intensive screenwriting workshop designed specifically for someone who plans to make a film for moderation or senior project. In a seminar setting we will work on multiple drafts, at times utilizing actors to workshop the scripts. The goal will be to develop a concise and polished short screenplay ready for production. The class will engage in poetic strategies and writing assignments forming the bedrock for vigorous analysis as students workshop their scripts. This course will require extensive outside research, and a commitment to a rigorous writing and rewriting process. Students must currently have a short script in progress that they intend to workshop during the semester.  Pre-requisite: Film 256 – Writing the Film or Film 229 – Character & Story, or the successful completion of a sophomore level production class. Non-majors can participate but must email the professor to highlight their screenwriting experience prior to registration for approval. ALL prospective students must email [email protected] one paragraph (no more than 200 words) with a short synopsis of the screenplay you want to workshop in class, and explain your interest in taking this course.

FILM 203: PERFORMANCE & VIDEO

Professor: Ben Coonley

Fall 2020

This course explores intersections of video and performance art. Course participants develop strategies for exploiting video’s most fundamental property: its ability to reproduce a stream of real-time synchronized images and sounds. How does video technology mediate between on-screen performer and audience? How can artists interested in creating critical and self-reflexive media respond to video’s immediacy and “liveness”? How can performance artists use video playback devices, displays, projectors, interactive elements, and live video mixing software to shape and enhance live art? The first half of the course concentrates on the creation of performance “tapes” (or tape-less video recordings) and the history of experimental video focused on performance for the camera. The second half of the course concentrates on the use of video as a central component within live performance art. We will read about and carry on a sustained conversation about the cultural and psychological impact of video technology on subjectivity and conceptions of the artist as “medium.” Readings on and viewings of work by Marina Abramović, Vito Acconci, Laurie Anderson, Trisha Baga, John Baldessari, Paul Chan, Patty Chang, Chris Burden, Coco Fusco,  Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Wynne Greenwood, Nancy Holt, Joan Jonas, Miranda July, Mike Kelley, George KucharKalup Linzy, Tara Mateik, Shana Moulton, Jayson Musson, Bruce Nauman, Nam Jun Paik, Sondra Perry, Walid Raad, Martha RoslerJacolby Satterwhite, Michael Smith, Ryan Trecartin, Andy Warhol, William Wegman, among others. This course will be taught in person. The final assignment of the course will focus on strategies and methods of live online performance. Students studying remotely may participate, in consultation with the instructor.

FILM 225: 3D ANIMATION

Professor: Ben Coonley

Fall 2020

In this course, students are introduced to processes for creating moving image artworks using 3D animation software and its ancillary technologies. Topics include: the basics of 3D modeling and animation, 3D scanning, and creative use of other technologies that allow artists to combine real and virtual spaces. Weekly readings reflect on the psychological, cultural, and aesthetic impacts of the increasingly prevalent use of computer-generated imagery in contemporary media. Students are not assumed to have any previous experience with 3D animation. This production class fulfills a moderation/major requirement. This course will be taught in person.  Students studying in-person and remotely will be accommodated. Students studying remotely should consult the instructor for details.

FILM 342: Stereoscopic 3D Video

Professor: Ben Coonley

Spring 2020

This course introduces methods and strategies for producing stereoscopic 3D and 360-degree moving image artworks. Students will learn to use 3D and 360 videocameras, 3D projection systems, VR headsets, and related technologies that exploit binocular and panoramic viewing. We will examine moments in the evolution of 3D technology and historical attempts at what André Bazin called “total cinema,” considering the perceptual and ideological implications of apparatuses that attempt to intensify realistic reproductions of the physical world. Students attend weekly screenings of a broad range of 3D and 360-degree films and videos, including classic Hollywood genre movies, contemporary blockbusters, short novelty films, independent narratives, animations, industrial films, documentaries, avant-garde and experimental artworks. Creative assignments challenge students to explore the expressive potential of the immersive frame, while developing new and experimental approaches to shooting and editing 3D images. This production class fulfills a moderation requirement. 

AS/HIST/PS 2510: ENVIRONMENTAL HISTORIES OF THE RECENT UNITED STATES

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2021

This course critically explores the history of the twenty-and twenty-first century United States through the country’s natural and built environments. Moving chronologically, we consistently ask what the relationship is between nature, labor, and capital, and what the relationship is between space, place, and race. This course most closely speaks to students interested in federal and state environmental policies, activism regarding disability and health rights, fights over urban environmental concerns, perspectives from the North American West, and the history of transnational racial, indigenous, and environmental justice movements.

AS/HIST 2510: ENVIRONMENTAL HISTORIES OF THE RECENT UNITED STATES

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2021

This course critically explores the history of the twenty-and twenty-first century United States through the country’s natural and built environments. Moving chronologically, we consistently ask what the relationship is between nature, labor, and capital, and what the relationship is between space, place, and race. This course most closely speaks to students interested in federal and state environmental policies, activism regarding disability and health rights, fights over urban environmental concerns, perspectives from the North American West, and the history of transnational racial, indigenous, and environmental justice movements.

HIST 382: RE-THINKING SILICON VALLEY

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2024

This seminar uses the space of the Silicon Valley to explore larger threads and themes in post-war economic, urban, political, and intellectual United States history.

AS/ EUS/ HR/ HIST 180: Technology, Labor, Capitalism

Professor: Jeanette Estruth

Fall 2023

Artificial intelligence and the knowledge economy. Computation and Credit. Satellites and social media. Philanthropy and factory flight. “Doing what you love” and digital activism. Climate change and corporate consolidation. This class will explore changes in capitalism, technology, and labor in the twentieth- and twenty-first century United States. We will learn how ideas about work and technology have evolved over time, and how these dynamic ideas and evolving tools have shaped the present day.

HIST 144: THE HISTORY OF EXPERIMENT 

Professor: Gregory Moynahan

Spring 2023

The scientific method and the modern form of the scientific experiment are arguably the most powerful inventions of the modern period. Although dating back in its modern form to only the sixteenth century, the concept of the experiment as an attempt to find underlying continuities in experience has numerous origins stretching back to earliest recorded history. In this course, we will look at several different epochs’ definition of experiment, focusing on the classical, medieval, and finally renaissance eras to the present. Throughout, we will understand the concept of experiment as closely connected with an era’s broader cosmology and definition of experience, and as such will see the epistemological problem of the experiment in a framework that includes aesthetics, theology, ethics and politics. We will also assume that “experiment” has taken different forms in the different sciences, and even in fields such as art and law.

HIST/ THTR 236: POWER & PERFORMANCE IN THE COLONIAL ATLANTIC

Professor: Christian Crouch, Miriam Felton-Dansky

Spring 2023

Societies in different historical periods have habitually used performance to stage, reinforce, and re-imagine the scope of political and colonial power. The history of the theater, therefore, is inextricably connected with the history of how societies have performed conquest, colonialism, and cultural patrimony in different parts of the world. This interdisciplinary course, covering performance and power of the early modern period, will disrupt habitual assumptions about both the disciplines of theater and history. Students will read baroque plays, study their historical contexts, and experiment with staging scenes, to uncover the links between imagined and actual Atlantic expansion and the impact of colonialism, 1492-1825. Artistic forms to be examined include the English court masque, the Spanish auto sacramental, and spectacles of power and conversion staged in the colonial Americas; plays will range from Shakespeare’s The Tempest to Marivaux’s The Island of Slaves to allegorical works by Calderon, Lope de Vega, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, and more.

HIST 334 Finnegans Wake: Vico, Joyce, and the New Science

Professor: Gregory Moynahan

Spring 2022

In 1725, Giambattista Vico presented to the world a “New Science” of poetic imagination that was intended as a point-by-point re-contextualization of the already established foundations of the natural sciences of Rene Descartes and Francis Bacon. In 1939, with much of the world enveloped in fascism and on the verge of a new technological war, James Joyce presented an immersive demonstration of Vico’s science in Finnegans Wake. By turns confusing, hilarious, and profound, Joyce’s “vicociclometer” sought to provide a reorientation in myth and history of the relation of ancient and modern life, religion, and politics. In this course, we will use the “exception” provided by both texts to look at the norms of modern intellectual history, using selections in their context to reconsider the background assumptions of modern societies and their political implications. Central issues will include the destruction of oral and traditional cultures (and peoples) by print based-civilizations, the function of science and myth in the organization of modern life (particularly as mediated by law), the definition of individuals and collectives by narrative and institutional form, the relation of written history to power, the function of technological media in politics, and the place of complexity in aesthetics and life. A central theme will be the history of the book as it develops among other media technologies, which we will thematize through the use of Bard’s collection of the facsimiles of Joyce’s voluminous notecards on Finnegans Wake (the so-called “Buffalo Manuscripts”).

HIST 298: MAKING SILICON VALLEY HISTORIES

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2022

This course is an introduction to the history of Silicon Valley. Moving chronologically between 1945 and the present, we will study the history of this significant region, and stories about the area’s technology industry. With a focus on social justice,  this class will explore race and ethnicity, gender and sexuality, health and disability, immigration and labor, and diversity and inequality in technology and the modern United States. In this class, students will experience first-hand the history of the early Silicon Valley through a wealth of primary sources, such as newspaper accounts, oral histories, photographic images, government documents, corporate reports, advertisements and business journalism, and more. We will also engage an exciting and emerging secondary literature.

HIST 334: FINNEGANS WAKE: VICO, JOYCE, AND THE NEW SCIENCE

Professor: Gregory Moynahan

Spring 2022

In 1725, Giambattista Vico presented to the world a “New Science” of poetic imagination that was intended as a point-by-point re-contextualization of the already established foundations of the natural sciences of Rene Descartes and Francis Bacon. In 1939, with much of the world enveloped in fascism and on the verge of a new technological war, James Joyce presented an immersive demonstration of Vico’s science in Finnegans Wake. By turns confusing, hilarious, and profound, Joyce’s “vicociclometer” sought to provide a reorientation in myth and history of the relation of ancient and modern life, religion, and politics. In this course, we will use the “exception” provided by both texts to look at the norms of modern intellectual history, using selections in their context to reconsider the background assumptions of modern societies and their political implications. Central issues will include the destruction of oral and traditional cultures (and peoples) by print based-civilizations, the function of science and myth in the organization of modern life (particularly as mediated by law), the definition of individuals and collectives by narrative and institutional form, the relation of written history to power, the function of technological media in politics, and the place of complexity in aesthetics and life. A central theme will be the history of the book as it develops among other media technologies, which we will thematize through the use of Bard’s collection of the facsimiles of Joyce’s voluminous notecards on Finnegans Wake (the so-called “Buffalo Manuscripts”). The only prerequisite for this class is to have read Joyce’s Ulysses, which will be used as a sort of methodological tool-kit and skeleton key for understanding Finnegans Wake.

HIST 3103: POLITICAL RITUAL IN THE MODERN WORLD

Professor: Robert Culp

Fall 2021

Bastille Day, the US presidential inaugural, Japan’s celebration of victory in the Russo-Japanese War, pageants reenacting the Bolshevik Revolution, and rallies at Nuremberg and at Tian’anmen Square. In all these forms and many others, political ritual has been central to nation-building, colonialism, and political movements over the last three centuries. This course uses a global, comparative perspective to analyze the modern history of political ritual. We will explore the emergence of new forms of political ritual with the rise of the nation-state in the nineteenth century and track global transformations in the performance of politics as colonialism spread the symbols and pageantry of the nation-state. Central topics will include state ritual and the performance of power, the relationship between ritual and citizenship in the modern nation-state, the ritualization of politics in social and political movements, and the role of mass spectacle in the construction of both fascism and state socialism. Seminar meetings will focus on discussion of secondary and primary materials that allow us to analyze the intersection of ritual and politics in a variety of contexts. These will range from early-modern Europe, pre-colonial Bali, and late imperial China to revolutionary France, 19th century America, colonial India, semi-colonial China, nationalist Japan, fascist Italy, Nazi Germany, the USSR, Europe in 1968, and contemporary Syria. In addition to common readings and seminar participation, students will write a final seminar paper exploring one aspect or instance of political ritual. Moderated history students can use this course for a major conference.

HIST 3230: INFRASTRUCTURE HISTORY

Professor: Gregory Moynahan

Fall 2021

This research course will use the history of infrastructures — such as those of communication / information, transportation, energy, and military organization – to introduce pivotal themes in the contemporary history of science and technology, economics, and social-institutional history.  Infrastructure will be defined broadly to include both the explicit set of practices, systems, and technologies that provide the conditions for the possibility of modern social life and the implicit contexts (environmental, cultural, psychological) that these planned structures reveal. Using the history of infrastructure, we will assess recent historiographical responses to the long-standing debate between ‘social constructivism’ (society determines technology / science) and ‘technological determinism’ (science / technology determines society), particularly those which attempt to define a third ‘hybrid’ reading in which technological and social choices reciprocally define each other. General themes will include the increasing place of ethics in constructing infrastructures, the role of economics in both ‘big science’ and massive technological projects, the development and role of the military-industrial complex, and the problem of complexity in contemporary historiography. Specific infrastructures studied as examples will include those centered around the railroad, the modern financial system, the urban newspaper, the concentration camp, the electrical grid, nuclear missile guidance technologies, and the Arpanet / Internet. Authors read will include Edwards, Habermas, Haraway, Hughes, Latour, Luhmann, Rabinbach, and Simmel.  Students will be expected to complete a 30-35 page original paper using primary sources.

HIST 2510: ENVIRONMENTAL HISTORIES OF THE RECENT UNITED STATES

Professor: Jeannette Estruth

Spring 2021

This course critically explores the history of the twenty-and twenty-first century United States through the country’s natural and built environments. Moving chronologically, we consistently ask what the relationship is between nature, labor, and capital, and what the relationship is between space, place, and race. This course most closely speaks to students interested in federal and state environmental policies, activism regarding disability and health rights, fights over urban environmental concerns, perspectives from the North American West, and the history of transnational racial, indigenous, and environmental justice movements.

HIST 384: NATIVE ARTS, NATIVE STUDIES: RE/FRAMING THE HISTORY OF INDIGENOUS ART AND COLLECTION

Professor: Christian Crouch

Spring 2021

This research seminar (jointly offered with CCS and open to moderated undergraduates) offers students a chance to study and work through a variety of themes framing contemporary Native artistic production and collection. We will consider foundational, interdisciplinary theory in Native American and Indigenous Studies (NAIS) as well as laying a historical groundwork in how academic and arts institutions have engaged with and framed Native art and objects. Using case studies, students will have a chance to consider how Native collections have entered archives and arts institutions, how these institutions are being forced (or volunteering) to reconsider Native objects and artistic production, and how Native communities and activists have framed arguments on legal and ethical grounds to engage with issues of reparations and repatriation of objects. The course will also consider traditions of modernism within Native arts and the interventions made into these broader conversations by two generations of contemporary Native artists. Prior knowledge of the subject is not required, though helpful (eg. HIST 2356, ARTH 389, ARTH 279, EUS 309). For undergraduate History and American Studies majors, this course fulfills the Historiography/American Studies Junior Seminar requirements.

HIST/ FREN 381: Contagion: on rumor, heresy, disease, and financial panic

Professor: Tabetha Ewing

Fall 2020

This course explores some of the oldest objects and modes of communication, but it focuses on the period between the Great Famine of Northern Europe and the Great Fear during the French Revolution, by way of the Wars of Religion and several financial bubbles burst. It looks at the social groups most associated with spreading hearsay, women, “the common people,” and the enslaved, and at those groups, identified usually by religious difference, who were made scapegoats to the majority populations in crisis periods. As a study of what passed for information and its changing media, students sample different methods of socio-cultural analysis to chart its transmission and reception. The entangled histories of rumor, heresy, disease, and financial panic suggest themselves as precursors of mass media propaganda, agitprop, and fake-news. But they also indicate a world in which the body, bodiliness, and body metaphors were central to truth claims, whether folk wisdom, common sense, or princely decree. These phenomena are intimately tied to state-building, the rise of the police, and administrative centralization. The course looks squarely at cyclical histories of hatred, of strangers, religious minorities, and racial others, with the understanding that contemporaries did not view their beliefs as such, but rather as simple or prophetic truth. Time, information, knowledge, and communication, at play together, are the critical ingredients to historiographical understanding. Students will answer the questions:  how do we write the history of fleeting events, of passing emotions, of patent untruths or impossibilities? As such, the course serves as a Major Conference for students in Historical Studies. They will complete creative final projects using old media and new and, in doing so, reshape how history is told (read, heard, viewed, or otherwise experienced). 1-hour weekly lab for digital research. Open to Sophomores and Juniors.

HIST 2123: FROM ANALOG TO DIGITAL: HISTORICAL AND DOCUMENTARY PHOTOGRAPHY IN AFRICA AND THE DIASPORA

Professor: Drew Thompson

Fall 2020

As technology and practice of image making, photography in Africa evolved alongside territorial imperialism and globalization. In turn, the image and its archiving were critical facets of the continent’s histories of liberation and post-independence. This survey introduces students to the historical development of photography in Africa and the historical uses of photographs in the late-nineteenth century to recent times. Divided into five parts, the course begins with different theoretical views on the relationship between photography and history. After a consideration of the photography of the royal courts in North Africa and Christian missionaries in West Africa, the class will shift to the role of photography in the making of independent African nations and their liberation struggles during and after World War II. The course concludes by considering the commodization of African photography at international biennales and its functions for single-party regimes that continue to rule across Sub-Saharan Africa. Key themes include photography’s role in shaping historical knowledge and the representation of Africa and its peoples, the appropriation of image making into African creative practices and daily life, the politics of exhibition and archiving, and the ethics of seeing war and social justice. Students will design a historical photography exhibition, and, over the course of the semester, they will also have the opportunity to interact with leading photography curators, photojournalists and art photographers who have spent time in Africa.

HIST/ AS/ AFR/ FREN/ HR 2631: CAPITALISM AND SLAVERY

Professor: Christian Crouch

Fall 2020

Scholars have argued that there is an intimate relationship between the contemporary wealth of the developed world and the money generated through four hundred years of chattel slavery in the Americas and the transatlantic slave trade. Is there something essential that links capitalism, even liberal democratic capitalism, to slavery? How have struggles against slavery and for freedom and rights, dealt with this connection? This course will investigate the development of this linkage, studying areas like the gender dynamics of early modern Atlantic slavery, the correlation between coercive political and economic authority, and the financial implications of abolition and emancipation.  We will focus on North America and the Caribbean from the early 17th century articulation of slavery through the staggered emancipations of the 19th century. The campaign against the slave trade has been called the first international human rights movement – today does human rights discourse simply provide a human face for globalized capitalism, or offer an alternative vision to it?  Concluding weeks tackle contemporary reparations, anticolonialism, and can “racial capitalism” finally be abandoned. Readings include foundational texts on slavery and capitalism, critical Black theory, and a variety of historical works centering the voices of enslaved and free people of color from economic, cultural, and intellectual perspectives. There are no prerequisites and first-year students/non-majors are welcome. A remote only section is available.

HIST 109: Scientific Literature

Professor: Cecelia Watson

Spring 2020

Scandalous suppositions about God, invisible murderers, bad puns, cliffhangers, deadpan comedy, breathtaking lyricism– these are perhaps not the first elements that come to mind when we think about scientific writing. Yet the history of science is filled with examples of spectacular rhetoric. In this course, we will consider scientific texts that have particular literary merit. As we read and discuss each text closely, proceeding chronologically, we will also begin to develop a sketch of the history of concepts like truth and evidence. By the end of the course, students will be well-positioned to ask what it means to be intelligent consumers and producers of science. Readings include work from Aristotle, Isaac Newton, Michael Faraday, Charles Darwin, W.E.B. Du Bois, Joan Riviere, Watson and Crick, and more.

AS/ FREN/ HR/ HIST 314: Violent Culture/Material Pleasure

Professor: Christian Crouch

Spring 2020

Emeralds.  Chocolate. Sugar.  Tobacco. Precious. Exotic.  Sweet. Addictive. Like human actors, commodities have stories of their own.  They shape human existence, create new sets of interactions, cross time and space, and offer a unique and incredible lens through which to view history.  This course explores the hidden life of material objects that circulated from the early modern Atlantic into the rest of the world. The life cycle of these products and items reveal narratives of Atlantic violence imbedded into these products: the claiming of Indian land, the theft of enslaved labor, the construction and corruption of gender norms.  Course readings will introduce historical methods and strategies to reclaim history from objects found in different parts of the Americas and will culminate with students having the opportunity to do original research and write the narrative of an item themselves. This course fulfills the American Studies Junior Seminar requirement and History Major Conference requirement.  

HR 318: Documentary Arts: Practices of Fact and Fiction, History and Politics

Professor: Argyro Nicolaou

Spring 2024

The need to document contemporary and historical experiences has always been at the heart of the arts, be it literature, music, painting and sculpture, filmmaking or live arts/performance. Yet an equally long tradition of thought exists that insists on separating fact from fiction; stories from history; and aesthetics from politics, relegating any serious pursuit of truth to so-called documentary practices alone. But what counts as documentary? Can’t the artful also document? And if so, what sorts of relationships of representation and critical interpretation emerge from the merging of artistic practices with the facts and consequences of historical and/or contemporary sociopolitical events? This seminar will draw from a diverse tradition of historical fiction on the page and screen, political cinema, research-based art and critical theory to explore the different ways in which the arts can document reality and how ‘real-life’ documents are turned into art. (D&J justification: As a course dealing with the comparative study of how the arts can document reality, this course will emphasize the ways in which social differences of various types manifest in and are addressed by artistic practices in their documentation of reality.)

ARTS/HR 240: Technology, Humanity & the Future

Professor: Krista Caballero

Spring 2024

In both theory and practice, this course is designed to explore the intersections of technology, justice, and creative practice. One of our central lines of inquiry will be: How might technology be utilized in ethical and just ways to (re)imagine our human cultural practices and resulting ecological impact? In approaching this question, we will consider ways that artists and community activists are pushing boundaries to both critically and creatively address the future of technology and issues relating to identity and privacy, data sovereignty and governance, e-waste and rare earth mining, deepfakes and AI. Key theoretical texts from scholars such as Felix Guattari, Safiya Umoja Noble, Hito Steyerl, Gregory Cajete, Shannon Mattern, Lev Manovich, and Lisa Nakamura will ground our exploration alongside a series of guest lectures by a diverse group of artists, scholars and activists across the OSUN network. Through readings and discussions, this course will explore technology across historical periods and how past forms help shape our current moment. Students will also work intensively to develop creative projects that blur boundaries between physical and digital media, integrate field-based research, and experiment with interdisciplinary practices of making.

ARTS/HR 310: The Belly is a Garden

Professor: Vivien Sansour

Spring 2024

Inspired by the Palestinian saying El Batin Bustan (The Belly is a Garden) this course explores bio-cultural diversity and the question of being of the earth and part of its diverse terrains. Fundamental questions we will explore are: How can biodiversity and human diversity be paths to wellbeing? How can humans understand themselves as nature’s co-creators? This course is designed as an experiential journey using multiple forms, including original texts, discussion, guided fieldwork directed by faculty, nature walks, in class writing exercises, and group workshops. Students will work in consultation with the professor on individual self-directed projects throughout the semester. These projects will be presented at the end of semester to the combined class of AQB and Annandale. The projects will all require some form of field research such as conducting interviews, gathering site related natural material for possible installations, photography, oral histories, film, among others including performance art. Students will engage in hands-on, outdoor activities such as cooking, planting, and possibly seed or crop harvesting with discussions of key texts grounding our interdisciplinary investigation. In an attempt to deconstruct colonial forms of being we will be exploring ourselves as living beings navigating a global landscape that is both in crisis and in constant transformation. How do we relate to the soil beneath our feet? How are we informed by other living beings in our surroundings? Between the question of settler and Indigenous how can we better understand ourselves, and our place in the world, while engaging in collaborative designs of new possible futures? As an OSUN Network Course, students will have the opportunity to participate in shared online events and conversations with students at Al-Quds Bard College, Palestine but the majority of the semester will be in-person on Bard’s Annandale Campus.

ARTH/HR 318: Dura-Europos and the Problems of Archaeological Archives

Professor: Anne Chen

Spring 2024

What silences do archaeological archives unintentionally preserve? In what ways do power and privilege influence the creation and shape of archaeological archives, and dictate who has access to them? How might new technologies help us begin to rectify inequities of access? Once called by its excavators the “Pompeii of the East,” the ancient archaeological site of Dura-Europos (Syria) preserves evidence of what everyday life was like in an ancient Roman city. The site is home to the earliest Christian church building yet found, the most elaborately decorated ancient synagogue known to date, and testifies to the ways in which ancient religions and cultures intermingled and inspired one another. Yet since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011, the site has been irreparably compromised for future archaeological exploration. More than ever, our knowledge and understanding of the site will depend almost entirely upon archival information collected in the course of archaeological excavations that took place 100 years ago when Syria was under French colonial occupation. In this hands-on practicum course focused on the case-study of this fascinating archaeological site, students will not only learn what we know of Dura-Europos as it was in antiquity, but will also think critically about issues central to the use and development of archival resources more generally. Coursework will center around firsthand engagement with data, artifacts, and archival materials from the site, and will allow students the opportunity to develop guided research projects that ultimately contribute toward the goal of improving the site’s accessibility and intelligibility to users worldwide. The methods and critical perspectives explored in this class will be particularly relevant to students interested in exploring careers in GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museum) fields. Class meetings will occur approximately eight times during the semester (precise meeting schedule to be set at the beginning of the semester). AHVC distribution: Ancient.

ARCH 211 BC: ARCHITECTURE AS TRANSLATION: AT SCALE

Professor: Betsy Clifton

Spring 2024

Architectural models are a unique medium, a visual language that references the built world through scale and abstraction. As physical objects, they represent futures (proposals), histories (sites and contexts), and current conditions (material resources, shifting societal demands), often slipping between these temporalities. Learning how to make models is as important as learning to read what they tell us about the world. In this elective design studio, students will make an architectural model as a continuous practice, utilizing a spectrum of physical and digital fabrication methods such as woodworking, casting, digital modeling, and laser cutting. In making architectural models, we will question how societal models (such as domestic routines, building regulations, political cycles, and environmental systems) can be represented in physical form. We will ask how this form of architectural translation can complicate latent biases within the built environment, making visible otherwise invisible networks of power. No prerequisites.

WRIT 345: Imagining Nonhuman Consciousness

Professor: Benjamin Hale

Spring 2024

Philosopher Thomas Nagel asked, “What is it like to be a bat?” Ultimately, he determined the question unanswerable: A bat’s experience of the world is so alien to our own that it is beyond the human understanding of subjective experience. That’s arguable. But it is true at least that a bat’s experience—or that of any other nonhuman consciousness—is not inaccessible to human imagination. In this course we will read and discuss a wide variety of texts, approaching the subject of nonhuman consciousness through literature, philosophy, and science. We will read works that attempt to understand the experiences of apes, panthers, rats, ticks, elephants, octopuses, lobsters, cows, bats, monsters, puppets, computers, and eventually, zombies. Course reading may include Descartes, Kafka, Rilke, Jakob von Uexküll, Patricia Highsmith, John Gardner, J.A. Baker, Eduardo Kohn, David Foster Wallace, Zora Neale Hurston, Temple Grandin, Jane Goodall, Thomas Nagel, John Searle, Susan Daitch, Giorgio Agamben, Bennett Sims, and E. O. Wilson, among others, in addition to a viewing of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later, and possibly other films.  There will be several long writing assignments over the course of the semester, and a workshop component. Students interested in this workshop must email [email protected]

 

HR 321 A: Video advocacy: Clemency (Production)

Professors: Brent Green and Thomas Keenan

Fall 2023

State governors (and the President) in the United States possess a strange remnant of royal sovereignty: the power of executive clemency, by which they can pardon offenses or commute the sentences of people convicted of crimes. They can do this to correct injustices, show mercy, or undo disproportionate punishments. Clemency doesn’t just happen – it requires a lot of work on the part of the incarcerated person and his or her advocates. But there are almost no rules governing what a clemency appeal looks like, so there is significant room for creativity in how applicants present their cases. In this practical seminar we will join forces with a team of students at CUNY Law School and the human rights organization WITNESS to prepare short video presentations that will accompany a number of New York State clemency applications this fall. Proficiency with video shooting, editing, and an independent work ethic are important. Meetings with clemency applicants in prison are a central element of the class. This is an opportunity to work collaboratively with law students and faculty, to do hands-on human rights research and advocacy, and to create work that has real-life impact. The class will alternate between video production and the study of clemency and pardons, emotion and human rights, first-person narrative, and persuasion by visual means. Please submit a short statement describing your abilities in shooting and editing video, and your interest in criminal justice, by May 6th. There are no prerequisites, but we seek a class that includes filmmakers, analysts, and activists.  This is an Engaged Liberal Arts and Sciences (ELAS) class. Students are strongly encouraged to take HR 321 B together with this course.

HR 321 B: Video advocacy: Clemency (Reading)

Professors: Brent Green and Thomas Keenan

Fall 2023

This class is a 2-credit companion to HR 321A, for those students who wish to read additional scholarly material on clemency, the U.S. criminal justice system, pardons and forgiveness, the role of images in human rights activism, first-person testimony and narrative, advocacy, and other related topics.  It does not include a video production component.  Students in HR 321A are urged to take it; others are welcome, space permitting. This is an Engaged Liberal Arts & Sciences (ELAS) class.

HR 321 B: Video advocacy: Clemency (Reading)

Professors: Brent Green and Thomas Keenan

Fall 2023

This class is a 2-credit companion to HR 321A, for those students who wish to read additional scholarly material on clemency, the U.S. criminal justice system, pardons and forgiveness, the role of images in human rights activism, first-person testimony and narrative, advocacy, and other related topics.  It does not include a video production component.  Students in HR 321A are urged to take it; others are welcome, space permitting. This is an Engaged Liberal Arts & Sciences (ELAS) class.

AS/ EUS/ HR/ HIST 180: Technology, Labor, Capitalism

Professor: Jeanette Estruth

Fall 2023

Artificial intelligence and the knowledge economy. Computation and Credit. Satellites and social media. Philanthropy and factory flight. “Doing what you love” and digital activism. Climate change and corporate consolidation. This class will explore changes in capitalism, technology, and labor in the twentieth- and twenty-first century United States. We will learn how ideas about work and technology have evolved over time, and how these dynamic ideas and evolving tools have shaped the present day.

ARCH 222: An Atlas of Radical Ruralism: Hard Labor, Soft Space

Professor: Stephanie Kyuyoung Lee

Spring 2023

This research and design studio will focus on rural approaches to social, racial, and economic liberation. Working collaboratively, we will create a global atlas of radical farming collectives to be later published as a zine. By looking at historical, fictional, and realized case studies, students will map out a spatial taxonomy of cooperatives, intentional communities, regenerative agriculture farms, and back-to-land initiatives. What does it mean to create an infrastructure of care, and systems of resilience within a capitalist landscape of production, extraction, and exploitation? In this course, we will construct a network of political ecologies, linking case studies like Freedom Farm Cooperative, Marinaleda, and Soul Fire Farm. Through seminars and workshops, students will learn to create and analyze each project through 2D and 3D drawings alongside diagramming and multimedia collaging. Through this collective process, students will articulate notions of “land” and “labor”, and pair them with new dialogues on how the rural countryside operates as a site for radical forms of collective living.  No Prerequisites. Please email Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco ([email protected]) for inquiries.

HIST/ THTR 236: POWER & PERFORMANCE IN THE COLONIAL ATLANTIC

Professor: Christian Crouch, Miriam Felton-Dansky

Spring 2023

Societies in different historical periods have habitually used performance to stage, reinforce, and re-imagine the scope of political and colonial power. The history of the theater, therefore, is inextricably connected with the history of how societies have performed conquest, colonialism, and cultural patrimony in different parts of the world. This interdisciplinary course, covering performance and power of the early modern period, will disrupt habitual assumptions about both the disciplines of theater and history. Students will read baroque plays, study their historical contexts, and experiment with staging scenes, to uncover the links between imagined and actual Atlantic expansion and the impact of colonialism, 1492-1825. Artistic forms to be examined include the English court masque, the Spanish auto sacramental, and spectacles of power and conversion staged in the colonial Americas; plays will range from Shakespeare’s The Tempest to Marivaux’s The Island of Slaves to allegorical works by Calderon, Lope de Vega, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, and more.

ARCH/EUS/HR 211: Little Blue Marble: Letters to the Earth

Professor: Thena Tak

Fall 2022

Through a series of carefully selected texts, this seminar focuses on building better relationships with our planet by engaging areas of discourse that actively and intimately connect us to the natural world.  In architecture, our relationship to the natural world has been framed through many lenses – most familiar is perhaps through the more clinical lens of technology and performance.  Little Blue Marble however, foregrounds empathy, attentiveness, and participation as ways to bring us in better communion with the earth and perhaps, this form of relation may allow for an alternative set of cultural and social practices within architecture that shift our discipline’s dominant modes of thinking and being.  A few key texts that will help guide this conversation include Robin Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass, Robert Macfarlane’s Underland, and Slow Spatial Reader: Chronicles of Radical Affection edited by Carolyn F. Strauss.  In addition to readings and discussions, Little Blue Marble will ask students to create letters to the earth throughout the term.  These letters will also take on varied expressions and forms through writing and ‘open’ drawing, i.e. a range of drawing forms, from digital to analogue methods, will be welcome.  The making of these letters will be opportunities for students to rethink language, representation, and storytelling as a way to help us build literacy with the more-than-human world. No prerequisites required. Please email Ross Exo Adams ([email protected]) for inquiries.

ARTH/HR 289: Rights and the Image

Professor: Susan Merriam

Fall 2022

This course examines the relationship between visual culture and human rights. It considers a wide range of visual media (photography, painting, sculpture), as well as aspects of visuality (surveillance, profiling). We will use case studies ranging in time from the early modern period (practices in which the body was marked to measure criminality, for example), to the present day. Within this framework, we will study how aspects of visual culture have been used to advocate for human rights, as well as how images and visual regimes have been used to suppress human rights. An important part of the course will be to consider the role played by reception in shaping a discourse around human rights, visuality, and images. Subjects to be addressed include: the nature of evidence; documentation and witness; stereotyping; racial profiling; censorship; iconoclasm; surveillance; advocacy images; signs on the body; visibility and invisibility.

AS/ EUS/ HR 219: Mapping Police Violence

Professor: Kwame Holmes

Spring 2020

This class emerges from my preoccupation with the recent increase in media and political attention to extra- judicial killings by police officers in the United States. Predominant questions will include: What can we know about police violence, and what are the barriers to data transparency and distribution? What are the means–political, legal, economic, cultural– through which Western societies authorize the police to use deadly force?  Can we measure the impact of police violence on a range of exogenous factors like public health indices, adjacent property values, educational opportunities and the distribution of social services? In pursuit of answers, we will engage political theory, history, sociology, economics, and cultural studies to produce an interdisciplinary study of police violence. I use the word “produce” with great intention. Students will be tasked with producing new knowledge about police violence.  As a collective, we will use demographic analytical tools, alongside datasets from the Police Data Initiative, to spatially apprehend police violence incidents in a given city. Students will then bring their own research questions to our collectively generated maps. In that sense, we will also think critically about how to ask a research question, and how to pursue a variety of research projects.

EUS/ HR/ ARTS 220: Architectural Entanglements with Labor

Professor: Ivonne Santoyo Orozco

Spring 2020

Architecture is both the product of labor and the organizer of its relations, yet often these issues remain overshadowed by aesthetic considerations and the broader discourse of design. In shifting the question of labor in architecture to the foreground, this course invites students to reflect on the spatio-political role architecture has played in mediating bodies, work and capital. To do this, we will analyze contemporary transformations to paradigmatic sites of work (offices, factories, tech campuses), as well as the many spaces that have been produced to feed architectural production and its endless cycles of extraction (camps, slums, mines), and the architecture that reproduces forms of maintenance (houses, squares, resorts). We will analyze a diverse set of contemporary and historical architectural precedents against a heterogenous landscape of voices from Maurizio Lazzarato, Silvia Federici, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, David Harvey, Peggy Deamer, Mabel O. Wilson, among others. The course will unfold in a combination of lectures and seminars. There are no exams but students are expected to complete weekly assignments and a final project.

HR 222: Migration and Media

Professor: Emma Briant

Spring 2020

This course explores in depth the role of media in the global refugee and migration crisis. We will begin by examining the causes of migration and recent trends, and then turn to theories of media and  representation and how they can help us understand the role of political rhetoric and mainstream media reporting. Students will examine media representation and political rhetoric in relation to a number of international examples including: citizenship by investment programs used by wealthy elites, economic migration to America, and the refugee crisis. The course will consider theories of political communication, rhetoric, audience understanding and the impact of media representations of migration on migrants and their communities.We will examine how new media forms and developments in algorithmic propaganda are being used to advance false narratives. Students will also consider the practical and ethical implications of new technologies, including how they can both enable integration and allow for the social control of migrant flows and the suppression of human rights.

HIST/ AS/ AFR/ FREN/ HR 2631: CAPITALISM AND SLAVERY

Professor: Christian Crouch

Fall 2020

Scholars have argued that there is an intimate relationship between the contemporary wealth of the developed world and the money generated through four hundred years of chattel slavery in the Americas and the transatlantic slave trade. Is there something essential that links capitalism, even liberal democratic capitalism, to slavery? How have struggles against slavery and for freedom and rights, dealt with this connection? This course will investigate the development of this linkage, studying areas like the gender dynamics of early modern Atlantic slavery, the correlation between coercive political and economic authority, and the financial implications of abolition and emancipation.  We will focus on North America and the Caribbean from the early 17th century articulation of slavery through the staggered emancipations of the 19th century. The campaign against the slave trade has been called the first international human rights movement – today does human rights discourse simply provide a human face for globalized capitalism, or offer an alternative vision to it?  Concluding weeks tackle contemporary reparations, anticolonialism, and can “racial capitalism” finally be abandoned. Readings include foundational texts on slavery and capitalism, critical Black theory, and a variety of historical works centering the voices of enslaved and free people of color from economic, cultural, and intellectual perspectives. There are no prerequisites and first-year students/non-majors are welcome. A remote only section is available

ARTH/ EUS/ HR 307: CONTESTED SPACES

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Fall 2020

During the 19th and 20th century, streets, kitchens, schools, and ghettos were the spaces of political conflict and social transformation. Often these spaces are studied as sites of contestation, where old pedagogical, medical, institutional paradigms witness the emergence of new. This course will focus on these spaces of contestation and discus show objects and buildings in dialogue construct new ideas about class, gender, and race. Readings by Chantal Mouffee, Hannah Arendt, Antony Vidler, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Michel Foucault will provide us with analytical tools and theoretical frameworks to address those actors excluded from history, problematizing agency and authorship in art and architecture. The class assignments include weekly responses, collaborative projects on the course website, and a final paper. The class is taught in collaboration with the University of Michigan and Michigan State University. AHVC distribution: 1800-Present/America.

EUS/ AS/ HR 309: EUS COLLOQUIUM/PRACTICUM

Professors: Elias Dueker & Krista Caballero

Fall 2020

We generally assume maps are objective, accurate representations of data and the world around us when, in fact, they depict the knowledge, experience, and values of the humans who draft them. As a hybrid EUS practicum + colloquium, this course will explore ways in which ecological issues are entangled with colonial histories of racism and supremacy, resource extraction and expansion through mapping. Native American scholarship will ground our exploration as we consider the impact and consequences of mapping as a tool used historically to claim ownership and invite exploitation. We will also investigate the evolution of radical cartography to counter these practices and imagine alternative mapping for more just ecological futures. A series of Indigenous scholars and activists will provide an opportunity for students to learn from experts working at the forefront of their fields to address environmental injustices locally, nationally, and internationally. These guest lectures will be paired with hands-on projects that explore mapping as a tool for environmental advocacy alongside artistic and counter-mapping approaches that experiment with ways we might communicate scientific and humanistic knowledge to a wider audience. In both theory and practice this team-taught course aims to reconsider and transform ways of engaging community science and community action through collaborative inquiry, interdisciplinary experimentation, and meaningful cross-cultural dialogue.

WRIT/ HR 313: IMAGINATION UNDER SIEGE

Professor: Valeria Luiselli

Fall 2020

This course focuses on re-imagining processes of documenting violence and writing about it: political, environmental, racial, and gender-based violence, among others. We will be reading an array of authors –such as Ursula K Le Guin, Anne Carson, Dolores Dorantes, Ernesto Cardenal, Maria Zambrano, and Aimé Césaire– and will be looking at work emerging from other disciplines, such as soundscapes, architecture, land art, alternative mappings, as well as forms of protest and collective organizing. Students will work on fragmentary and hybrid forms of prose, in search for new ways of exploring imagination as both a tool for political resistance and as an end in itself. During the semester, students in “Imagination Under Siege” will also meet with Ann Lauterbach’s course “The Entangled Imagination,” to converse/discuss/collaborate on the ways in which imaginative thinking is a necessary tool in resisting and finding alternatives to authoritarian governments, surveillance capitalism, and climate emergency, among the realities we are facing today.

EUS/ HR/ ARTH 314: Public Writing and the Built Environment

Professor: Olga Touloumi

Spring 2020

This course introduces students to issues concerning architecture, the built environment, and spatial justice through forms of public writing. In collaboration with the instructor, each student will focus on one area or issue such as the prison- industrial complex (as found, for example, at Rikers Island), gentrification in Newburgh, housing inequality in Chicago, the water crisis in Flint, management of nuclear waste in the Hudson, shrinking cities in the Rust Belt, and oil pipeline infrastructure on tribal lands. To mobilize interested publics and address officials, students will use Twitter; design petitions; write blog entries; interview stakeholders; write protest letters; and prepare for a public hearing. The goal will be to inform the public, raise awareness, and reclaim agency over the design and planning of our environments through writing. Combining texts from the various assignments, students will produce a final thirty-minute podcast that will live online. (Fulfills two program requirements: Modern / Europe + US)

AS/ FREN/ HR/ HIST 314: Violent Culture/Material Pleasure

Professor: Christian Crouch

Spring 2020

Emeralds.  Chocolate. Sugar.  Tobacco. Precious. Exotic.  Sweet. Addictive. Like human actors, commodities have stories of their own.  They shape human existence, create new sets of interactions, cross time and space, and offer a unique and incredible lens through which to view history.  This course explores the hidden life of material objects that circulated from the early modern Atlantic into the rest of the world. The life cycle of these products and items reveal narratives of Atlantic violence imbedded into these products: the claiming of Indian land, the theft of enslaved labor, the construction and corruption of gender norms.  Course readings will introduce historical methods and strategies to reclaim history from objects found in different parts of the Americas and will culminate with students having the opportunity to do original research and write the narrative of an item themselves. This course fulfills the American Studies Junior Seminar requirement and History Major Conference requirement.  

HR 366: Propaganda: Dark Arts

Professor: Emma Briant

Spring 2020

This course examines changing policies and practices of propaganda in democracies. It will examine propaganda as a political tool and in information warfare. Students will explore important historical and technological transitions and learn core theoretical approaches and ethical questions. The course will follow the history of propaganda in democracies from the wars of the 20th Century to the development of surveillance capitalism, bots, and emergence of AI propaganda. Topics include: public opinion and democracy; censorship; power, emotion, and language; selling war; hacking, leaking, and big data; data rights and ethics; Cambridge Analytica and election manipulation.

LIT 134: The Joke as Literature

Professor: Adhaar Desai

Fall 2020

Open both to intended Literature students and to others interested in developing skills in close-reading and critical analysis, this course takes jokes as its object of study. Like poems, jokes often rely on the precise use of language’s many features. Like plays, they are meant to be performed, and so depend on context, audience, and actors’ bodies. Like stories, they frequently feature characters, conflicts, and resolutions. Interested in the intersections between jokes and issues pertaining to power, race, sexuality, gender, and class, we will peruse joke books from throughout history alongside essays by Henri Bergson, Sigmund Freud, and Roxane Gay. We will also spend time unpacking the use of jokes in plays by William Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde, and Paula Vogel, and study stand-up by Richard Pryor and Phyllis Diller as well as a diverse selection of contemporary comedians. Student writing will be analytical, argumentative, and creative (yes, that last one means we will all try to write at least one joke).

LIT 144: Making Love: Introduction to Renaissance Poetry

Professor: Adhaar Desai

Fall 2021

When we think about Renaissance poetry, we tend to think of the sonnet: rule-bound, blatantly artificial, and old-fashioned. The funny thing is, the poets writing in the Renaissance tried everything they could to make their poems appear as just the opposite: organic, sincere, and excitingly new. Just beneath the veneer of formal qualities like rhyme and meter, poems from the period are sensitive and probing explorations of chaos, frustration, madness, desire, and the sublime. This course focuses on the theme of love as a psychological, emotional, and political concept to examine how poets in the period fought with language in order to make poetry say things that could not be said otherwise. Our units will consider how both the concept of love and the poetic techniques used to articulate it intersect in surprising ways with political subversion, queerness, and religious doubt. Through both critical assignments and creative exercises, including engaging with digital media to better understand how the technologies of publication shape the transmission of ideas, we’ll hone a deep understanding of essential aspects of poetry while we think about how it was (and still is) a tool for thought and an instrument of emotional understanding. The course covers a broad range of significant (and significantly  undervalued, self-consciously strange, or flagrantly subversive) works of poetry, and will pay particular attention to poetry by women. Shakespeare, Spenser, and Donne will take their place in context alongside Thomas Wyatt, Philip and Mary Sidney, Ben Jonson, Katherine Philips, Mary Wroth, and George Herbert. This course is a Pre-1800 Literature course offering.

LIT 153: Falling in Love

Professor: Maria Cecire

Spring 2020

Caught up, let down, storm-tossed by emotion, under a spell, suddenly looking around as if with new eyes: are we talking about falling in love, or reading a great book? This course will consider some iconic literary depictions of romantic love as well as lesser-known texts, critical theory, and popular material across a range of media as we expand and challenge our ideas about this often-controversial emotional state. We will consider to what extent language and literature can capture and convey our most intimate feelings, experiences, and desires — and to what extent they participate in creating them. Course texts will include medieval chivalric romance, Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, Gabriel García Márquez’s Love in the Time of Cholera, Alice Walker’s The Color Purple, selections of love poetry, and at least one mass-market “bodice-ripper” romance novel. Our discussions will bring us into contact with discourses of gender and sexuality, power and desire, and “literary” and “lowbrow” fiction, and address what role digital culture plays in how love is imagined and experienced today. This course is open both to intended Literature majors and to others interested in developing skills in close-reading and critical analysis.

LIT 235: INTRODUCTION TO MEDIA

Professor: Nathan Shockey

Fall 2020

This course offers an introduction to media history and theory, tracking a series of events, technologies, and concepts with the aim of understanding media not simply as a scholarly object but as a force constitutive of our selves, our social lives, and our world. We will  consider old and new media alike, from writing to printing to photography to comics to the contemporary digital landscape, as we explore how media have reconstructed our perceptions of time, space, knowledge, and identity. The premise of the course is that the new-ness of new media can only be approached against the background of humanistic experimentation and imagination, even as it transforms our lives and experiences. We will read key media theorists such as Walter Benjamin, Donna Haraway, Katherine Hayles, Friedrich Kittler, Marshall McLuhan, John Durham Peters, and Byung-Chul Han, as well as critical, literary, and artistic reflections on our mediated universe, including new topics such as media archaeology, media geology, and energy humanities. We will also spend some hands-on time working with — and not just on — media, in order to assess our own positions as producers as well as users and consumers of media via the ethos of practice and making. Intro to Media is one of the two core courses for the Experimental Humanities concentration.

LIT 243: LITERATURE IN THE DIGITAL AGE 

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

Fall 2020

The proliferation of digital information and communications technologies over the past half-century has transformed and continues to transform how literary works are composed, produced, circulated, read, and interpreted. What new forms and practices of reading and writing have emerged in this late age of typography? What is the nature, extent, and significance of these changes? This course re-assesses questions and themes long central to the study of literature including: archiving, authorship, canon formation, circulation, materiality, narrative, poetics, and readership, among others. The course aims to understand our present moment in historical context by pairing contemporary works with texts from and about other shifts in media from the ancient world to the modern era. Readings include Augustine, Borges, Eisenstein, Flusser, Hayles, Jenkins, and Plato, as well as works of HTML/hypertext fiction, Twitter literature, online poetry, fan fiction, and so on. Coursework will include online and off-line activities in addition to traditional papers. Recommended for current and potential Experimental Humanities concentrators. 

LIT 263: WHAT IS A CHARACTER?

Professor: Adhaar Desai

Spring 2022

We are often drawn to characters more than anything else in our encounters with books, plays, or movies. This happens despite our knowing that characters remain exactly what their name implies: trapped by printed letters, scriptedness, or the limits of a screen. Characters are always mediated, but they can also show us how concepts like humanity and personhood depend on and contend with the media humans use to share ideas. In this course, we will study the history of characters in western fiction to learn how archetypes, racial and gendered stereotypes, historical or geographical settings, and the capabilities of different media technologies shape our encounters with them. We will also explore different ways of “reading” characters by thinking about how computer algorithms might understand something as supposedly complex as an individual’s personality. Primary texts will include Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Stevenson’s Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde, Parks’s The America Play, Cusk’s Outline, and short stories by Toni Morrison, Kate Chopin, and others. We will also consider films, television shows, and video games. Students will have the opportunity to become characters in class debates, discuss fan fiction, and experiment with how to translate characters between media as we engage in analytical, theoretical, and creative work throughout the term.

LIT 2055: THROW AWAY YOUR BOOKS AND RALLY IN THE STREETS: MODERN JAPANESE AVANT-GARDES

Professor: Nathan Shockey

Fall 2021

In this class, we will trace a prismatic cascade of experimental movements in Japanese literary, visual, plastic, and performance arts and architecture, from the turn of the 20th century through the present. The organizing concept of the course is the critic Hanada Kiyoteru’s idea of sà´gà´ geijitsu = “art as synthesis” – as a means to understand the mutually productive movements of textual, visual, haptic, and auditory media within their global and transnational contexts. We will begin with prewar Japanese re-imaginations of Euro-American historical avant-gardes and political vanguards, then follow a fragmented trajectory that includes movements such as Fluxus, Neo-Dadaism, and New Wave Cinema, the political provocations of Hi-Red Center, the Sogetsu Art Center scene, divergent trends in photographic experimentation, the Underground Theater of the 1970s, architectural Metabolism, haute couture fashion, noise music, new millennium pop art, contemporary political protest, and much more. Throughout, we will consider the complex dialectics at play between aesthetic and political avant-gardes at play on the razor’s edge of reification in the commercial sphere.  This course is part of the World Literature course offering.

LIT 2081: Mass Culture of Postwar Japan

Professor: Nathan Shockey

Fall 2022

This course explores the literature, history, and media art of Japan since the Second World War. Beginning with the lean years of the American occupation of 1945 to 1952, we will trace through the high growth period of the 1960s and 1970s, the “bubble era” of the 1980s, and up through to the present moment. Along the way, we will examine radio broadcasts, television, popular magazines, manga/comics, film, fiction, theater, folk and pop music, animation, advertising, and contemporary multimedia art. Throughout, the focus will be on works of “low brow” and “middle brow” culture that structure the experience of everyday life, as we think about the transformation of forms of narrative in tandem with different forms of popular media. Among other topics, we will consider mass entertainment, the emperor system, the student movement and its failure, changing dynamics of sex, gender, and family, “Americanization,” the mythos of the middle class and the rise of economic precarity, immigration, and climate disaster.  In addition, we will think about changing images of Japan in American media and the ways in which the mass culture of postwar Japan has shaped global pop cultural currents in the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

LIT 2084: LITERATURE OF EXPERIMENT

Professor: Daniel Williams

Spring 2022

What is the relationship of literary writing to scientific experiment? How do literary authors and movements characterize themselves (or become characterized) as experimental? This course surveys a range of texts from the 19th century to the present that engage with experiment in terms of content, form, or shape. We will read texts that represent scientific praxis alongside texts that deploy literary improvisation. We will consider what commonalities exist across experimental and avant-garde modes: the commitment to linguistic innovation and metatextual reflection; the prevalence of manifestos and movements; the lure of technology and intermediality. Throughout we will also consider experimentalism as both value and vice in critical method, from deconstruction to the digital humanities. In keeping with our theme, class meetings and assignments will frequently adopt improvisational practices—from automatic writing to chance-driven composition to quantitative analysis. Authors might include Hopkins, Mallarmé, Kafka, Woolf, Stein, Breton, Calvino, Pynchon, Ashbery, Hejinian, Davis, and Saunders.

LIT 2213: BUILDING STORIES

Professor: Peter L’Official

Fall 2021

Cities and their surrounds have long been fertile grounds for the construction of narrative. This course examines relationships between narratives and their settings by employing conceptual frameworks borrowed from architectural studies and histories of the built environment. Weekly discussions of a wide range of texts—literary and otherwise—will be structured around building typologies and common tropes of urban planning: the row-house brownstone, the apartment building, the skyscraper, the suburban or rural house, and the arteries of linkage between them. We will read each set of texts as narratives of place, space, and architecture to discover what, if any, architectures of narrative may undergird or influence them. We will consider to what extent geography and landscape shape culture and identity; we’ll chart relationships between race, class, gender, and the environment as articulated by the city and related regions; and we will explore notions of public and private space and our ever-mutable understandings of what it means to be “urban.” Texts will include novels, essays, films, visual art, and graphic novels. Authors may include: Alison Bechdel, Sarah Broom, June Jordan, Rem Koolhaas, Ben Lerner, Kevin Lynch, Paule Marshall, Zadie Smith, D.J. Waldie, Colson Whitehead.

LIT/ SPAN 301: Intro to Spanish Literature

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

Spring 2020

This course explores some of the major literary works produced on the Iberian Peninsula from the Middle Ages to the present day. Students will become familiar with the general contours of Spanish history as they study in depth a selected number of masterpieces, including works by Miguel de Cervantes, Calderón de la Barca, Teresa de Jesús, Cadalso, Larra, Galdós, Emilia PardoBazán, Unamuno, Lorca, and Carmen Laforet. The course will be organized around three thematic modules: Spanish culture’s engagement with notions of purity and pollution; the emergence and evolution of the first person singular in Spanish literature; and the representations of the country and the city, the center and the periphery. In each module we will undertake a survey of relevant literature occasionally put in conversation with the visual arts. Conducted in Spanish.  

LIT/ AS/ EUS 3028: SOUNDSCAPES OF AMERICAN LITERATURE

Professor: Alexandre Benson

Fall 2020

(Junior Seminar) We often use sonic terms—voice, tone, echo, resonance—to describe poetry and fiction, even as we set writing in opposition to the noisy, melodious stuff of speech and song. If this paradox poses a knotty problem for our study of literature as a medium, it also raises questions of social relation that have been central to the history of American writing: What does it mean to read and to listen in situations of radical cultural difference? How have the concepts of textuality and orality intersected with the histories of racism and other instruments of inequality? What happens to the traditional dichotomy of sound and sight when approached from the perspectives of disability studies and of environmental humanities? We will explore these questions in literary texts, musical recordings, and theoretical work in the field of sound studies and beyond. Authors and artists considered may include James Baldwin, John Cage, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Emily Dickinson, Zora Neale Hurston, Helen Keller, Abbey Lincoln, and Pauline Oliveros. Coursework will focus on practices of research, writing, revision, and collaboration that will prepare students to write senior projects in Literature and related humanities fields.

LIT 3152: JEANNE LEE’S TOTAL ENVIRONMENT

Professor: Alex Benson

Fall 2021

This course bridges the study of American literature, campus history, and avant-garde music (especially free jazz) through an extended reflection on the work of vocalist Jeanne Lee (1939-2000). “I look at myself as already an environment,” Lee said in a 1979 interview, “and in turn the music is created as a total environment to the audience.” What did she mean by this? We may find some answers in our own environment; Lee graduated from Bard in 1961. She then went on to a four-decade career as a singer, poet, writer, and educator. Through that career we’ll consider questions of voice, aesthetics, race, and gender, paying special attention to relationships between art and politics, improvisation and community. To this end we will study a number of artists with whom Lee collaborated or from whom she drew inspiration, including writers Ralph Ellison, Ntozake Shange, and Gertrude Stein and musicians Marion Brown, John Cage, and Abbey Lincoln. Archival campus materials will help us understand Lee’s time at Bard, with a focus on musical performances, student publications, and curriculum. We’ll ask how all of these things intersected with broader currents of US culture at a moment of civil rights activism and other social transformations. In addition to listening, reading, writing, and discussion, coursework will involve collaborative, public-facing projects that may include designing an audio tour or podcast, conducting oral history interviews, and/or curating an educational exhibit. Open to Literature students but also to all others with interests in interdisciplinary arts. Preference in registration to moderated students, but no prerequisites.

LIT 3432: LITERATURE IN THE DIGITAL AGE

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

Spring 2022

The proliferation of digital information and communications technologies over the past half-century has transformed and continues to transform how literary works are composed, produced, circulated, read, and interpreted. What new forms and practices of reading and writing have emerged in this late age of typography? What is the nature, extent, and significance of these changes? This course re-assesses questions and themes long central to the study of literature including: archiving, authorship, canon formation, circulation, materiality, narrative, poetics, and readership, among others. The course aims to understand our present moment in historical context by pairing contemporary works with texts from and about other shifts in media from the ancient world to the modern era. Readings include Augustine, Borges, Eisenstein, Flusser, Hayles, Jenkins, and Plato, as well as works of HTML/hypertext fiction, Twitter literature, online poetry, fan fiction, and so on. Coursework will include online and off-line activities in addition to traditional papers. Recommended for current and potential Experimental Humanities concentrators. This will be an OSUN course, with half of the spots reserved for Annandale students who have completed two or more years of college. Please contact the professor prior to registration.

LIT 341: THE BOOK BEFORE PRINT

Professor: Marisa Libbon

Spring 2021

What were books like before the invention of print? What was the experience of reading them? How did they shape and how were they shaped by the world in which they were produced? And how do we know? In c. 1475, William Caxton set up England’s first printing press. Prior to the arrival of this new technology—which the sixteenth-century writer John Foxe deemed miraculous—English books were made of vellum (animal skin) and were written and decorated by hand. In this course, we’ll study early English books both as cultural objects and literary archives, dividing our time between investigating how pre-print English manuscript-books were made and read, and studying their contents, including the popular literature of medieval England: epics, lyrics, histories, romances, all of which will be made available in modern printed editions. We will also study the painted illuminations that accompany many of these texts. Our work will raise questions about the relationship between material form and literary content; the intersection of image and text; the development and preservation of literary and visual artifacts; the ethical and practical problems of producing modern printed editions of handwritten texts; and the proximity of anonymous pre-print culture to the so-called Internet Age.  This course counts as pre-1800 offering.

LIT/ SPAN 359: Haunted by Ghost of Cervantes

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

Spring 2020

Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixote, widely considered the first modern novel, is a work intra-textually attributed to a fictional Moorish author, at a time when the Moors were being expelled from Spain. Authors trapped in fiction are sometimes persecuted, and then killed by their characters; others feel terrified, and become invisible as they hide behind the lines they write. Lastly, some authors are dead (or said to be dead), and speak to us from their tombs. What are the changing ways in which the ghostly figure of the author returns to fiction? What does it mean to be an author? This course will be an experimental reflection on the notion of authorship as it was originally redefined with the birth of modern novel in Golden Age Spain, and reshaped during Romanticism and contemporary times, through old and new media. With an emphasis on Iberian and Latin American literatures occasionally put in conversation with film, we will explore selected writings by Cervantes, J. A. Bécquer, Unamuno, Machado de Asís, Fernando Pessoa, Clarice Lispector, and Roberto Bolaño, among others. Theoretical texts to be read will include essays by Roland Barthes, Jorge Luis Borges, and Michel Foucault. Conducted in Spanish.

MUS 236: MUSIC, SEXUALITY & GENDER

Professor: Maria Sonevytsky

Fall 2021

This course surveys anthropological and musicological approaches to the study of sexuality and gender, asking how music informs and reflects cultural constructions of femininity and masculinity. Taking wide-ranging examples that include opera, popular music, folk and indigenous musics, we will investigate how modern gendered subjectivities are negotiated through musical practices such as composition, performance and consumption. Class readings will include ethno/musicological, anthropological, feminist, Marxist and queer theory approaches. Students will practice writing skills in a variety of formal and informal formats, culminating in an in-class presentation based on original research.

MUS 247: ETHNOGRAPHY: MUSIC & SOUND 

Professor: Whitney Slaten

Spring 2021

How have recent ethnomusicologists and anthropologists written about traditional and popular musics around the world? How does this writing respond to representing culture, locally and globally? How does this writing about musics’ social contexts respond to changing academic attitudes within the humanities and social sciences, as well as the interdisciplinary development of sound studies? Students will read, present, and discuss chapters from recent book length examples of musical ethnography. Lectures and discussions will focus on the writing strategies of ethnographers, continually assessing how writing represents and analyzes local and global practices of production, circulation, and consumption, as well as how such works participate in emergent scholarly traditions. The course will culminate in a written comparative ethnography analysis paper in which students will compare two ethnographic monographs.

MUS 253: ETHNOMUSICOLOGY: LOUDSPEAKERS AS CULTURE

Professor: Whitney Slaten

Spring 2020

How do loudspeakers construct musical culture? How does listening to loudspeakers reorganize social behavior? Critical organology, intersections of local and global influences, manufacturing and nationalism, cultural imperialism, strategies of resistance, generational change, race and bass, gender and power, digital technology, fidelity and loss as technological and cultural ideas, and ethnographic inquiry will be themes that organize the course. Students will understand the importance of loudspeakers from the perspectives of ethnomusicology, sound studies, and audio science. Class sessions will include experiments with audio transducers, as well as critical listening for the contributions of audio transducers in recorded and amplified music. Through weekly reading and writing assignments, short papers, and an ethnographic research paper, students will complete the course with a nuanced understanding of the relationship between music, technology, and culture.

MUS/CMSC 262: TOPICS IN MUSIC SOFTWARE: INTRODUCTION TO MAX/MSP

Professor: Matthew Sargent

Spring 2022

This course will introduce students to Max/Msp, an object-oriented programming environment for real-time audio processing, digital synthesis, algorithmic composition, data sonification, and more. Students will learn fundamental concepts of digital audio and computer programming while engaging in creative projects and in-class performances. The class will include examples of Max patches found in major works of 20/21st century electroacoustic music and sound art repertoire. The course will also explore connectivity between Max and other software applications, including Max4Live. The course will conclude with a final project. Introduction to Electronic Music, or a 100-level course in Computer Science, is recommended as a prerequisite.

MUS 269: LISTENING

Professor: Whitney Slaten

Fall 2021

From the perspective of both ethnomusicology and the audio sciences of sound reproduction, this course provides an introduction to the interdisciplinary work on sound studies. Throughout, it engages how specific critical listening techniques and features of sound studies discourses can be mutually informative for both musicians, sound artists, listeners, writers and cultural theorists who are interested in identifying the significance of musical or extramusical sounds within specific social contexts. Students will read, present, and discuss chapters and articles that each focus on singular keywords that are prominent within sound studies discourse. Lectures and demonstrations will juxtapose this terminology to a set of audio based ear training exercises that will develop students’ abilities to both hear and listen to the centers and peripheries of musical sounds and the evidence of related social life. Final projects for the course will take the form of an analysis that is informed by a blended critical listening and writing practice.

MUS/ CMSC 375: TOPICS IN MUSIC SOFTWARE

Professor: Matthew Sargent

Fall 2020

This course is an advanced seminar on the Max programming language and the digital signal processing of audio. Students will learn advanced concepts of digital audio and computer programming, while engaging in creative projects and in-class performances. The class will include study of the Fourier theorem, physical modeling, granular synthesis, multi-channel audio dispersion, binaural and ambisonic panning, and digital reverb design. The class will include critical discussion of electroacoustic and sound art repertoire of the 20/21st century. The course will conclude with a final project. Introduction to Max/Msp (or significant 300-level work in Computer Science) is required as a prerequisite.

HIST 127: PHILOSOPHY OF EXPERIMENT

Professor: Kathryn Tabb

Spring 2021

What does it mean to experiment? How does experiment differ from everyday experience, and what does it mean to gain expertise? This course will consider the broad range of methods that fall under the label “experimental” — in the arts, in politics, and especially in science — in order to bring into view what they all have in common. We will consider moments in history when the turn toward experiment has been most pronounced — such as during the so-called “Scientific Revolution” of the seventeenth century — and will also consider moments where experimentalism has been most resisted. We will consider the role of experiment in philosophy itself, examining the historic divide between rationalism and empiricism, the employment of philosophical thought experiments, and the trendiness of “x-phi,” or experimental philosophy, today. Along the way we will, of course, experiment ourselves with different modes of experiential learning, in order to interrogate the place of the experiment in a liberal arts education.

HIST 144: THE HISTORY OF EXPERIMENT 

Professor: Michelle Hoffman

Spring 2020

The scientific method and the modern form of the scientific experiment are arguably the most powerful inventions of the modern period. Although dating back in its modern form to only the sixteenth century, the concept of the experiment as an attempt to find underlying continuities in experience has numerous origins stretching back to earliest recorded history. In this course, we will look at several different epochs’ definition of experiment, focusing on the classical, medieval, and finally renaissance eras to the present. Throughout, we will understand the concept of experiment as closely connected with an era’s broader cosmology and definition of experience, and as such will see the epistemological problem of the experiment in a framework that includes aesthetics, theology, ethics and politics. We will also assume that “experiment” has taken different forms in the different sciences, and even in fields such as art and law.

PSY 238: HUMAN-COMPUTER INTERACTION

Professor: Thomas Hutcheon

Fall 2021

The field of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) sits at the intersection of computer science and cognitive psychology. The guiding question of HCI is how can we leverage what we know about human information processing to design efficient interfaces between humans and computers?  In this course, students will gain theoretical knowledge and practical experience in the fundamental aspects of human perception, cognition, and learning as it relates to the design, implementation, and evaluation of human-computer interfaces.  In addition, this course will consider the ways in which the nature and ubiquity of human-computer interactions are changing the way we think, behave, and interact with one another.  Prerequisites: PSY 141 or CMSC 141. Preference will be given to psychology and computer science majors.  This course fulfills the Cluster C requirement for the Psychology Major.

PSY 334: SCIENCE OF GOAL PURSUIT

Professor: Richard Lopez

Fall 2020

As human beings, we have to choose from myriad behaviors to engage in and/or refrain from—whether it is eating, drinking, exercising, socializing, playing, working, sleeping, or binge watching, just to name a few. How do we know exactly which behaviors are most congruent with our goals, and which are at odds with those goals? When certain patterns of behavior undermine health and wellbeing, are there any evidence-based cognitive or motivational strategies that can meaningfully change human behavior? How much truth is there in the saying “old habits die hard?” In this seminar, we will take a deep dive into the science of goal pursuit and behavior change, discussing both the promise and challenges of this area of study. Foundational readings from the psychological and brain sciences will cover important theoretical models of self-regulation and goal pursuit as well as the empirical evidence of these respective models to date. Students are expected to give in-class presentations of course material (individually and in groups), critically evaluate and propose alternatives to popular apps and devices advertised to promote behavior change, and write a final research-oriented paper (e.g., a study proposal or a review paper). The course is open to all moderated psychology and MBB students, or with permission of the instructor.

PSY 375: THE TALKING CURE: PODCASTS AS EXPLORATION OF DISORDERED EXPERIENCES

Professor: Justin Dainer-Best

Spring 2021

Despite the history of the term “talking cure,” we often focus almost entirely on the written word in courses introducing the basics of psychological disorders. In the rise of podcasts, however, we have an increased ability to learn about mental illness and treatment directly from people who are willing to share their experiences. In this seminar, each class meeting will revolve around a podcast episode that provides insight into some aspect of mental illness, accompanied by reading primary source research articles and theory. Topics will include cognitive processing therapy, gender identity, major depression, couples therapy, and opiate addiction. Students will be expected to make oral presentations of material in class and to write a substantive research paper, which may have auditory elements. Prerequisites: This course is limited to moderated students who have taken PSY 141 (Introduction to Psychological Science). A course in either Adult or Child Abnormal Psychology (PSY 210 or PSY 211) is also required, or permission of instructor.

REL 211: DIGITAL DHARMA: BUDDHISM AND NEW MEDIA

Professor: Dominique Townsend

Spring 2022

Many high profile figures associated with world religions, such as the Dalai Lama and Pope Francis, have adopted social media to communicate with followers, spread philosophical views, and offer spiritual instructions. In the Buddhist world, teachers use digital technologies to reach huge followings and to disseminate Buddhist texts, practical and ethical instructions, and iconic Buddhist imagery to students across the globe. The engagement with digital media has radically increased due to the pandemic as Buddhist communities have sought ways to convene safely. How have digital technologies reshaped how Buddhist teachers instruct students and attract new disciples, especially since the arrival of COVID-19? How do platforms such Twitter and WeChat constrict or alter Buddhist teacher’s messages, and how do they allow for an unprecedented global reach? What are the social and political risks and benefits of digital expressions of Buddhism? In this course students will analyze the function of digital Buddhist texts and images and investigate the use of digital media as a means for Buddhist teachers and communities to reach large and distant audiences. Recent digital trends will be considered in multiple cultural, political, and historical contexts that takes into account a diversity of Buddhist practices and pedagogies.

ART 100: Digital 1: Digital Sculpture

Professor: Maggie Hazen

Spring 2020

Today, digital machines do not simply produce images and information; they produce subjects and objects which govern ways of existing. This course will provide an introductory approach to digital sculpture for visual artists. We will cover basic software and digital equipment by designing a series of versatile, studio driven digital sculptures on each piece of equipment in the Studio Arts digital lab and woodshop—taking the work from physical to digital and back again. Students will learn basic Adobe Creative Suite programs: Photoshop and Illustrator, along with open source 3D modeling software. Projects designed with these software programs will manifest physically through the use of industry standard equipment such as laser cutting, 3D printing, 3D scanning, digital printing and CNC available in our digital lab.  No prior digital knowledge is necessary, however, some experience using Adobe Photoshop or 3D modeling programs is preferred.

ART 126: ED MAPPING: YOU ARE HERE

Professor: Ellen Driscoll

Spring 2022

Maps have been dynamic visual and conceptual inspiration for many artists.  In this class, we will work with drawing and sculptural installation to investigate the translation of scale and data to abstraction inherent in the art of mapping.  We will study a range of contemporary artists around the world for whom maps are central to their artistic practice. We will study the visual strategies, content, and context of maps in these artist’s works. We will also look at a rich range of historical maps from Polynesian navigation charts to the soundless silk maps of World War 2. The work of Katherine Harmon, Rebecca Solnit, W.E. B. DuBois, the counter-maps of the Black Panthers, and the Indigenous Mapping Collective, among others will form foundations for our research and artistic exploration. The 1000-acre campus of Bard will be our laboratory for focused research and for generating three visual projects. This is an Engaged Liberal Arts & Sciences (ELAS) course. In this course you will be given the opportunity to bridge theory to practice while engaging a community of interest throughout the semester. A significant portion of ELAS learning takes place outside of the classroom: students learn through engagement with different geographies, organizations, and programs in the surrounding communities or in collaboration with partners from Bard’s national and international networks. To learn more please click here.

ART 200 AC: DIGITAL II: MAGAZINE

Professor: Adriane Colburne

Spring 2021

n this class we will explore the world of independent art publications focusing on the artists’ magazine as an alternative and interdisciplinary space for art, activism, experimentation, and dialogue.  Projects will include individual and collective works in the format of zines, print magazines, collective editions and online publications. Assignments and class projects will be organized by student driven-themes reflective of concerns on campus and culture at large. In collaboration with the Hessel Museum and Stevenson Library we will explore the lively history of the artists’ publications through the lens of their collections. In addition, we will look to contemporary publishing collectives, online platforms, and small press initiatives. To support the coursework, we will be using the Adobe Creative suite with a focus on InDesign.  Digital 1 is not a requirement for this course, but students should have some level of comfort with Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, online publications, blogging, zine-making, or other relevant skills. Class participants should have an interest in image-making, book arts, photography, graphic design, art criticism, written arts, print media, tools for activism, alternative and minor economies and/or independent publishing.

ART 200: DIGITAL II: HYPERBLEED

Professor: Maggie Hazen

Fall 2020

The Hyperbleed—a metaphor or framework for describing the way images in the digital age have begun to “bleed” or slip off the screen into an embodied reality. This blur or slippage point marks a process of transition where images begin to invade reality. Throughout this course we will examine both still and moving images as they relate to the shaping of our global identity over the past 60 years. Students will learn the basic technical aspects of Adobe Premiere with an introduction to the video game design software Unity. We will examine the subject through an unconventional combination of practice, play and discussion. Students will be given project prompts that relate to The Hyperbleed in prevalent popular media including (but not limited too), identity, gender, violence, entertainment and fiction. Be prepared for these projects to move beyond the grid.

EUS/ HR/ ARTS 220: Architectural Entanglements with Labor

Professor: Ivonne Santoyo Orozco

Spring 2020

Architecture is both the product of labor and the organizer of its relations, yet often these issues remain overshadowed by aesthetic considerations and the broader discourse of design. In shifting the question of labor in architecture to the foreground, this course invites students to reflect on the spatio-political role architecture has played in mediating bodies, work and capital. To do this, we will analyze contemporary transformations to paradigmatic sites of work (offices, factories, tech campuses), as well as the many spaces that have been produced to feed architectural production and its endless cycles of extraction (camps, slums, mines), and the architecture that reproduces forms of maintenance (houses, squares, resorts). We will analyze a diverse set of contemporary and historical architectural precedents against a heterogenous landscape of voices from Maurizio Lazzarato, Silvia Federici, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, David Harvey, Peggy Deamer, Mabel O. Wilson, among others. The course will unfold in a combination of lectures and seminars. There are no exams but students are expected to complete weekly assignments and a final project.

SPAN 301: INTRODUCTION TO SPANISH LITERATURE IN CONVERSATION WITH THE VISUAL ARTS

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

Spring 2022

This course explores some of the major literary works produced on the Iberian Peninsula from the Middle Ages to the present day. Students will become familiar with the general contours of Spanish history as they study in depth a selected number of masterpieces, including works by Miguel de Cervantes, Calderón de la Barca, Teresa de Jesús, Cadalso, Larra, Galdós, Emilia Pardo Bazán, Unamuno, Lorca, and Carmen Laforet. The course will be organized around three thematic modules: Spanish culture’s engagement with notions of purity and pollution; the emergence and evolution of the first person singular in Spanish literature; and the representations of the country and the city, the center and the periphery. In each module we will undertake a survey of relevant literature occasionally put in conversation with the visual arts. Conducted in Spanish.

LIT/ SPAN 301: INTRODUCTION TO SPANISH LITERATURE IN CONVERSATION WITH THE VISUAL ARTS

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

Spring 2021

This course explores some of the major literary works produced on the Iberian Peninsula from the Middle Ages to the present day. Students will become familiar with the general contours of Spanish history as they study in depth a selected number of masterpieces, including works by Miguel de Cervantes, Calderón de la Barca, Teresa de Jesús, Cadalso, Larra, Galdós, Emilia PardoBazán, Unamuno, Lorca, and Carmen Laforet. The course will be organized around three thematic modules: Spanish culture’s engagement with notions of purity and pollution; the emergence and evolution of the first person singular in Spanish literature; and the representations of the country and the city, the center and the periphery. In each module we will undertake a survey of relevant literature occasionally put in conversation with the visual arts. Conducted in Spanish.

SPAN 325: ARCHIVE FEVER: LITERATURE AND FILM

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

Spring 2021

Contemporary societies are marked by a widely shared desire to create personal and collective archives as a way of witnessing and memorializing our lives. With an emphasis on, but not limited to, Spanish and Latin American cultures, this course will invite students to explore creatively literary and filmic manifestations that are symptomatic of today’s archive fever.  After reflecting on the beginnings of photography and its overt dream of archiving or “freezing” instants of life, we will analyze the original ways in which writers and filmmakers replicate, question, or radically subvert that old dream. Selected films documenting a sometimes traumatic past by Buñuel, Jordà, Almodóvar, and Agnès Varda, among others, will be put in conversation with literary works wherein authors like Dalí, Martín Gaite, Lispector, Chacel, Semprún, Partnoy, and Cercas compulsively organize visual and textual documents, interconnecting historical and personal memories. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisite: Spanish 301 or 302, or by permission of instructor.

SPAN 354: True Fictions from Spain and Latin America

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

Fall 2022

This interdisciplinary course will focus on some of the numerous literary, film and photography productions of the 20th and 21st centuries that seek to undermine the foundations of the split between fiction and reality, through old or new media. We will propose a possible archeology of autobiographical works with an emphasis on Spain, in conversation with Latin America, including Brazil. In this context, fiction will be understood as the lens through which the self – the author or the artist, the reader or the viewer – negotiates their place in the world. Some questions that will arise throughout the semester are: How does fiction operate within life? What are the limits of art and literature, in the so-called “post-truth” era? How does life interfere with fiction, politically? We will consider autofictional and testimonial works produced by writers, artists, and filmmakers such as Jorge Luis Borges, Clarice Lispector, Roberto Bolaño, Alicia Partnoy, Jorge Semprún, Paula Bonet, Miguel Ángel Hernández, Sergio Oksman, Joan Fontcuberta, Paula Bonet, Carla Simón, Marta Sanz, and Pedro Almodóvar, among others. An online Guest Creators Series will complement this class. Students’ final projects may take different forms, ranging from written research essays to podcasts, visual essays, and other artistic interventions. Conducted in Spanish. This is an OSUN class and is open to Bard students as well as students from multiple OSUN partner institutions.

LIT/ SPAN 359: Haunted by Ghost of Cervantes

Professor: Patricia Lopez-Gay

Spring 2020

Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixote, widely considered the first modern novel, is a work intra-textually attributed to a fictional Moorish author, at a time when the Moors were being expelled from Spain. Authors trapped in fiction are sometimes persecuted, and then killed by their characters; others feel terrified, and become invisible as they hide behind the lines they write. Lastly, some authors are dead (or said to be dead), and speak to us from their tombs. What are the changing ways in which the ghostly figure of the author returns to fiction? What does it mean to be an author? This course will be an experimental reflection on the notion of authorship as it was originally redefined with the birth of modern novel in Golden Age Spain, and reshaped during Romanticism and contemporary times, through old and new media. With an emphasis on Iberian and Latin American literatures occasionally put in conversation with film, we will explore selected writings by Cervantes, J. A. Bécquer, Unamuno, Machado de Asís, Fernando Pessoa, Clarice Lispector, and Roberto Bolaño, among others. Theoretical texts to be read will include essays by Roland Barthes, Jorge Luis Borges, and Michel Foucault. Conducted in Spanish.

THTR 259: GOING VIRAL

Professor: Miriam Felton-Dansky

Fall 2020

In our current era of pandemic, “the virus” not only occupies our headlines and news feeds; it also takes shape as a profound and frightening force in the cultural imagination. For theater and performance artists, this is nothing new: contagion, virus, and the viral have long functioned as subject matter, metaphor, and methods of disseminating work to audiences. This course investigates contagion and the viral as they have mattered to modern and contemporary artists, from the French modernist Artaud, who compared the “ideal theater” to the plague; to the 1970s collective General Idea, who called themselves viral artists nearly two decades before making some of the most iconic visual art responding to the HIV/AIDS crisis. We will examine the viral as a phenomenon of changing media landscapes–beginning with Orson Welles’s infamous 1938 “War of the Worlds” broadcast, long before the phrase “going viral” took on its current meaning–and ask questions about the nature of performance in a moment where all theatrical life is lived online. Though the focus of the courses will be viral theater and performance, we will find intersections with the viral in literature, new media, and installation art; students will explore the viral through critical essays and by making a viral work of art.

ARTH/ LIT/ THTR 317: 20TH CENTURY AVANT GARDE PERFORMANCE

Professor: Jean Wagner

Fall 2020

 “Set fire to the library shelves!” wrote the Italian Futurists in their first manifesto of 1909. With their revolutionary politics, audience provocations, and enthusiastic embrace of the new, the Futurists inaugurated a century of avant-garde performance. This course will investigate that century, tracing the European and American theatrical avant-gardes from 1909 to 1995, including movements and artists such as Expressionism, Surrealism and Dada; John Cage, Allan Kaprow, and Happenings; utopian collectives of the 1960s; Peter Handke, Heiner Müller, the Wooster Group and Reza Abdoh. We will explore questions including: the implications of assuming the mantle of the “avant-garde”; the contested status of the dramatic text in avant-garde performance; the relationship between performance and emerging media forms; and avant-garde artists’ efforts to create radical fusions of art and life. This course will require a research paper, reading responses, and a presentation. 

THTR 364: (POST)PANDEMIC THEATER: NEW YORK AND BERLIN

Professor: Miriam Felton-Dansky

Fall 2021

The year 2020-2021 witnessed profound and historic changes in the relationships among theater making, media, and society: from productions abruptly cancelled, to a powerful racial justice movement in the theater community, to new hybrid theater forms emerging on social media. This course investigates theater of the past year and a half, asking how contemporary theater’s relationship to its own social and political moment has changed, perhaps for good, at a time when audiences cannot gather in person. We will explore questions of institutional shift, examine significant digital performances made during the COVID-19 pandemic and trace movements for racial justice in the theater world. Our semester-long project will be the creation of a digital archive of New York-based pandemic theater, in collaboration with a team-taught class based at Bard College Berlin, which will be conducting a parallel investigation into pandemic theater in Berlin. We will hold virtual meetings with Berlin-based students and faculty, discuss the stakes and cultural implications of archival practice, and compare notes about how to document, describe, and understand the history we have all been living through together.

THTR 369: Digital Theaters

Professor: Miriam Felton-Dansky

Fall 2022

What happens when theater goes digital? This Bard network course addresses how theater and performance, as live embodied practices and forms of communal encounter, have permanently shifted during the COVID-19 pandemic, and celebrates new forms of performance that have emerged. We will investigate dispersed digital formats – WhatsApp and instagram performances, VR/AR-experiences, Zoom theater – using case studies from Berlin, Vienna/Budapest, Bogota, London, Johannesburg and Annandale/New York City. Digital Theaters will examine how the performing arts have fundamentally altered their reach, audience, institutional structures, and the quality of social encounter by going digital and what that suggests about the future make-up of the performing arts sector. This is an OSUN Network Collaborative Course taught in partnership courses on Digital Theatres offered at (list of all partner institutions) Universidad de los Andes, Bard College Berlin, Birkbeck, CEU, and University of the Witwatersrand.  As an OSUN collaborative network course, we will attend a digital theater festival based in South Africa and attend workshops with classmates in Berlin and London, while also functioning as an independent classroom community to build digital theater projects and investigate the stakes of the digital theater encounter in our own performance spaces and viewing lives. Assessment will be based on critical responses, creative digital projects, and participation.

EUS/ HR/ WRIT 345: IMAGINING NONHUMAN CONSCIOUSNESS

Professor: Benjamin Hale

Spring 2024

 P hilosopher Thomas Nagel asked, “What is it like to be a bat?” Ultimately, he determined the question unanswerable: A bat’s experience of the world is so alien to our own that it is beyond the human  understanding of subjective experience. That’s arguable. But it is true at least that a bat’s experience—or that of any other nonhuman consciousness—is not inaccessible to human imagination.  In this course we will read and discuss a wide variety of texts, approaching the subject of nonhuman consciousness through literature, philosophy, and science.  We will read works that attempt to understand the experiences of apes, panthers, rats, ticks, elephants, octopuses, lobsters, cows, bats, monsters, puppets, computers, and eventually, zombies. Course reading may include Descartes, Kafka, Rilke, Jakob von Uexküll, Patricia Highsmith, John Gardner’s Grendel, J.A. Baker’s The Peregrine, Eduardo Kohn’s How Forests Think, David Foster Wallace, Temple Grandin, Frans de Waal, Jane Goodall, Thomas Nagel, John Searle, Susan Datich, E. O. Wilson, Giorgio Agamben, and Bennett Sims’s A Questionable Shape, among others, in addition to a viewing of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later, and possibly other films. This is also a craft class, as each student will produce a substantial project over the semester.  The assignments will be open-ended, open to both creative and analytical works; a major component of the class will be incorporating these ideas into our own writing. This course is part of the Thinking Animals Initiative, an interdivisional collaboration among students and faculty to further the understanding of animals and human-animal relationships.

WRIT 126: POETICS OF ATTENTION

Professor: Philip Pardi

Fall 2022

Whether we train our gaze outward at the world around us or inward at worlds within, poets are called to pay attention in particular ways. In this class, we will consider attention as the first step of the creative process, and we will study and practice the seemingly simple act of attending to all that we encounter as we move through our days and (on a good day) make poems. While we will devote some time to revision, the focus of this workshop will be the fertile ground between immersive experience and early, generative, exploratory poetic composition. The longer Friday session will be spent writing together, taking short walks and excursions, sharing our work, and discussing readings related to the science and practice of attention; the one-hour Wednesday session will be devoted to a sustained exploration of a single poem. Special Note: To facilitate our experiment with attentiveness, class meetings and most of the assignments will occur completely offline (i.e. no phone, no laptop, no smartwatch). If you have any concerns about this (or any) aspect of the course format, please contact me before registration. All spaces are reserved for incoming first year and transfer students. Registration for this class will take place in August.

WRIT/ HR 313: IMAGINATION UNDER SIEGE

Professor: Valeria Luiselli

Spring 2021

What happens to imagination and the capacity for creativity during socio-political crises? Do circumstances like pandemics, wars, authoritarianism or situations of confinement ignite or stifle people’s creative drive? What does violence —political, environmental, racial, and gender-based—do to bodies and minds and how do we document that and write about it? These are some of the questions that will be addressed during this workshop. We will be looking at work emerging from several disciplines, such as soundscapes, architecture, land art, as well as forms of protest and collective organizing. Students will work on fragmentary and hybrid forms of prose or sound pieces, in search of new ways of exploring imagination as both a tool for political resistance and as an end in itself. We will be reading an array of authors –such as Audre Lorde, Ursula K LeGuinn, Anne Carson, Isamu Noguchi, Dolores Dorantes, Maria Zambrano, among others.

WRIT 354: PLUNDERING THE AMERICAS: ON VIOLENCE AGAINST LAND AND BODIES

Professor: Valeria Luiselli

Fall 2021

This course focuses on the histories of extractivism and violence against land and against the female body in the Americas, centering on ways in which writing, art and activism have responded to systemic violence across the continent. We will be looking at work emerging across several different languages and cultures in the continent and thinking about their hemispheric intersections as well as about their disconnects. Some of the thinkers, authors and artists we will be engaging with are Aimé Césaire, Natalie DÍaz, Dolores Dorantes, Layli Longsoldier, Fred Moten, Yasnaya Elena Aguilar, and Vivir Quintana, as well as several art collectives. For each class session, students are expected to prepare a written response in the form of a developed question or questions about the readings; these should be concise (not more than a page) and geared to spur our discussion. Students will also work on short, prompt-based exercises, trying to connect the trans-hemispheric questions and issues that we explore in class. All students will work on a final project, which can range from a traditional non-fictional piece, to a sound-piece, to a combination of textual and visual explorations, to a collection of short-form interconnected pieces.