Courses

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Spring 2022:

The following courses can be counted towards the GLOBES certificate. Please note that not all courses are administered by the program, and you will have to contact the instructors and originating departments directly to enroll.

STV 60520: GLOBES Policy Module: Water Management in the US        

When the subject of critical water shortages or devastating floods is raised, most Americans thinking of locations in the Global South. But our own water supply is in various kinds of crisis all across the country. This module will focus on water management in the Great Lakes Region and the Colorado River Basin, placing it in historical context and bringing together experts from a variety of fields.

STV 60521: GLOBES Communication Module

The GLOBES communication module will prepare students to better communicate their scholarship with the public and government officials. It is toffered in an intensive, short course format.

STV 60519: Future Science

This seminar situates numerous controversies over Big Data, the death of journals, flaws of research integrity, distrust of scientists, open science and the transformation of universities into a larger more encompassing framework. Although we have been living though an era of the commercialization of science since the 1980s, something has dramatically intensified over the last decade, resulting in distinctly novel phenomena. Whereas commercialization used to mean the subjection of research outputs to market considerations, a new development seeks to monetize nearly all aspects of the research process. This has become manifest under the rubric of “open science” as the purported solution to what is perceived to ail modern science, ironically often by individuals who regard themselves as more or less opposed to commercialization of science and the dominance of for-profit journals publishers. In a further ironic twist, lately the major commercial interests behind the top 5 journals publishers are pursuing control over “open science” by imposing the structures of “platform capitalism” upon the research process, at least in the Anglophone sphere.

ANTH 63209: Biopolitics

What is the relation between life and politics? In the late 18th century, a new technology of governance emerged. This technology, armed with a new science of statistics, focused on the management of life and death within the population; its rates of fertility, mortality, and illness. How could life expectancy be increased? How could rates of mortality be lowered? How could biological threats be eliminated? These questions of life and death were not only biological; life itself had emerged as a political problem. Michel Foucault called this new technology of power biopolitics. Since Foucault's formulation, the concept of biopolitics has demarcated an object of inquiry that has been taken up by scholars in a wide range of academic fields, including anthropology, sociology, literature, philosophy, and history. Through the lens of biopolitics, we will study a number of contemporary issues in which the politics of life and death are at stake, including humanitarianism, new medical technologies, public health interventions, disaster, incarceration, and global pandemics. In class, we will think through these topics together using examples drawn from visual and print media including film, journalism, literature, and photography.

BIOS 60206: Biosocial Determinants of Health

Global health is an area of study, research and practice that focuses on achieving equity in health for all people worldwide. The health status of individuals and populations arise from a myriad of complex biological, social, economic, political, and environmental factors that operate synergistically. Through a social justice lens, we will examine how these factors shape health outcomes and how interventions must be developed that include addressing the root causes of inequity. We will use a case-based approach, focusing on specific health problems in several countries, including the United States. Cases will include a variety of themes including health disparities arising from stress-associated racial discrimination, the epidemiological transition from infectious to non-communicable diseases, and how the health effects of climate change disproportionately affect the most vulnerable.

BIOS 60552: Topics in Ecology

The subject of "Topics in Ecology" changes every semester and in each section. Prospective students should consult with the instructor to determine the course topic and credit number. Some, but not all, Topics in Ecology courses fulfill the requirements for the GLOBES (Global Linkages of Biology, the Environment, and Society) program.

IIPS 80231/MGA 60139 Coloniality and Climate Change

How does the global south figure in writing on climate change? Can there be a role for the global south in the climate justice conversation that recognizes its vulnerability to climate change but goes beyond portraying it as always and only vulnerable and devasted or menacing? In this class we will begin with the premise that the answer is yes: not only is such a role possible, but it must actively be created if the climate justice conversation is to be an equal and inclusive one. Anchored in representations of climate refugees, extreme weather events, particular geographies and conflicts, and informed by scholarship on racialized constructions of ?good? and ?bad? migrants, this class will collectively work through the intersections between the political and ecological that contour the realities, as well as representations of human movement today. Our collective endeavor will be to (i) understand and critique existing writing on climate change, (ii) recognize and question the role of the global south in such writing and (iii) craft a new lexicon that is cognizant of colonial pasts and their continuity, and relates geographies, histories and politics.

LAW 70329 Energy Law

This course introduces students to the many legal and regulatory issues related to the generation, distribution, and consumption of energy in the United States. Particular attention will be given to the emerging law of renewable energy as it compares to the established legal frameworks for energy from fossil fuels. Course readings will include generous coverage of the political, environmental, and economic concerns that shape energy law.

MGA 60135 Religion, Technics and Human development

This seminar explores the relationship between religion and human development with the critical intervention of how technology-from ancient to modern times-shapes both religious vocabularies and notions of human flourishing. In the light of the raging environmental and political crises advocates of techno-science and policy-makers are challenged by both the limitations and capacity of technology to deal with the emerging "postnormal" times. The course offers a focused consideration of complexity, chaos and contradiction. What is the nature of the transitional epoch of the unthought and human ignorance in thinking and practice and possible remedies, if any?

MGA 60137 Environmental Anthropology and the Intersectionality of Justice

As the Flint, Michigan water situation began to attract attention and condemnation, Michigan State Representative, Sheldon Neeley, describing the troops on the ground and the Red Cross distributing water bottles, said that the Governor had ?turned an American city into a Third World country.? At a Congressional hearing, the Chairman of the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee said, ?This is the United States of America ? this isn?t supposed to happen here. We are not some Third World country. What is a ?third world problem?? This introductory environmental anthropology course examines how such imaginaries materialize in development programmes and literature, and bespeak charged geopolitical, racial histories; and invites reflection on what futures for working in common they enable and constrain. We will examine how crises are imagined and constructed, and the governance regimes they give rise to. How does water ? as natural resource, public good, kin, human right, need, commodity ? determine the contours of such regimes? We will also study chronic, quieter environmental problems and the responses they (do not) generate. Working through a variety of writing genres ? ethnography, policy literature, and corporate publicity material ? will enable students to appreciate what anthropology can contribute to the conversation on environmental justice. Class readings will draw on examples from a wide range of settings across the world, and group projects, in partnership with local environmental organizations and efforts (or done independently), will (i) narrate histories and map geographies of water access and toxicity, and (iii) imagine futures of more equitable water access in South Bend. The course is offered as an introduction to environmental anthropology and takes students through key themes ? infrastructure, race, class, privatization, justice, violence ? by focusing on water. It requires no background in anthropology. Students will cultivate the ability to read and write with care and to critique responsibly; develop a sense of overarching trends in anthropological approaches to categories such as nature, environment, ecology, violence and justice; relate contemporary issues of water in/accessibility, toxicity and privatization across disparate geographies.

MGA 60218 Global Water Policy and Governance

Water is central to the survival of humans and natural ecosystems. However, the scarcity of water has become a critical social and public health issue in the 21st century, and humans play a central role in transforming this critical resource. This course aims to provide students with a holistic understanding of the policy, governance, and institutional processes shaping human-water interactions globally. The course will cover topics ranging from water conflicts, climate-water nexus, water-sanitation-health nexus, politics of water use and management, the human right to water, water infrastructure and pricing, and other related themes through an interdisciplinary, policy lens. The course will also introduce students to relevant social theories, frameworks (for eg. political ecology, environmental justice, social justice), and methods for analyzing global water policy challenges.

MGA 60302 International Political Economy

This course introduces students to empirical trends and academic debates on the political underpinnings of the global economy. We will examine a range of actors involved in the politics of global markets - governments, international organizations as well as a range of private actors: What role does each of these actors play? How has their influence evolved over the post-War period? What challenges have they been dealing with over time and how successful are they in meeting them? The first part of the class introduces students to recent debates on what global markets are (readings address trends such as liberalization, globalization, and vertical disintegration) and to broad theoretical approaches that theorize global governance. We will then read about and discuss the history, politics, and current challenges of different types of global governance institutions: multilateral institutions and transnational governance arrangements. We will also read about the emergence of private governance regimes and how they interact with public standards and regulations. The class introduces a range of core issue areas debated in the IPE literature (finance, development, migration), and then focuses in some depth on two themes that are emerging as urgent challenges for the global economy: trade and the governance of common pool resources.