STV Fall 2016 Course Offerings
STV 20181 From Plato to Pope Francis
This survey course is a study on the long relationship between the often overlapping studies of the world around us (science) and the Divine (theology), especially in its Christian (and eventually Roman Catholic) form. It is a 3000-year journey of Christianity and modern science, which begins before either existed?around 1500 years before Christianity and 3000 years before the Scientific Revolution. This course will approach both science and Christianity from a theological perspective while incorporating studies of history and philosophy. In terms of methodology and approach, the beginnings of the discussion between science and theology will be found in the classical dialogue between, as Tertullian wrote, "Athens and Jerusalem"--or between reason and faith. Before the advent of the Scientific Revolution and its partner movement of the Enlightenment, scientific knowledge was not discernible from philosophical knowledge. Because of this, the first part of the course will be focused on understanding the theological discussions around reason and philosophy through discussions of Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, and Aquinas. Beginning in the 16th century, the course will shift to discuss more traditionally understood realms of "theology and science"--heliocentrism, evolution, environtmental theology, creation, medical ethics, and modern atheism. However, we will consistently return to discussions of faith and reason in theological literature, as these "hot topics" can only be properly understood through the wider methodological frame offered by theological reflection.
STV 20304 Energy and Society
A course developing the basic ideas of energy and power and their applications from a quantitative and qualitative viewpoint. The fossil fuels (coal, oil, natural gas) are studied together with their societal limitations (pollution, global warming, diminishing supply). Nuclear power is similarly studied in the context of the societal concerns that arise (radiation, reactor accidents, nuclear weapons proliferation, high-level waste disposal). The opportunities as well as the risks presented by alternative energy resources, in particular solar energy, wind, geothermal and hydropower, together with various aspects of energy conservation, are developed and discussed. This course is designed for the non-specialist.
STV 20310 Health, Medicine, and Society
This course is a comprehensive introduction to the sociology of health and of medicine.First we will examine how sociological variables affect people's health. Research is rapidly accumulating which shows that sociological variables have a huge impact on people's susceptibility to various illnesses, on their access to health care, and on their compliance with medical advice. Such variables include people's neighborhoods, occupations, and lifestyles; their social class, education, race, ethnicity, and gender - and the density of "social networks", whose importance for health was predicted by one of sociology's founders over 100 years ago.Second we will examine medicine, both the practice of medicine by individual health care professionals, viewed sociologically, and the operation of the increasingly large and bureaucratic medical institutions in which health care professionals must work. In addition, we will examine sociological issues that overlap "medicine", such as radically long shifts; the rapid increase in the proportion of female doctors; and increasing concern with work/family balance among practitioners. Third, we will examine health and medicine in relation to other dimensions of society, such as the modern economy, the media, law, the internet, government and politics. Health and medicine are intrinsically social and they cannot be isolated from the effects of the rest of society, many of which run counter to strictly "medical" considerations. Finally, we will examine health and medicine globally. We will compare health and medicine in a number of societies to see and explain how they are similar and how they differ - for example, how different societies pay for medical care. And we will examine global trends with implications for health and medicine that require cooperation among societies, such as the way in which global air travel both increases the danger of global pandemics and makes possible "medical tourism."
STV 20311 Health & Culture
This introductory course uses anthropological concepts to explore how different social groups experience health, illness, and healing. Our encounters with “traditional” healers, shamans, holistic practitioners, and medical doctors will prompt us to think about health and healing systems, including biomedicine or “Western” medicine, as social institutions, as well as sources of power and authority. Through critical readings, class discussions, and hands-on health practices, we will also consider how transnational flows and historical inequities shape how we know and experience our bodies.
STV20331 Introduction to Criminology
As in introduction to the topic of criminology, this course examines crime as a social problem within American society. Particular attention is given to the nature and function of law in society, theoretical perspectives on crime, victimology, sources of crime data, the social meaning of criminological data and the various societal responses to crime. These topics are addressed through specialized readings, discussion, and analysis.
STV 20461 Nuclear Warfare
Nuclear phenomena; nuclear fission and fusion. Nuclear weapons. Effects of blast, shock, thermal radiation, prompt and delayed nuclear radiation. Fire, fallout, ozone-layer depletion, electromagnetic pulse, "nuclear winter." Medical consequences, physical damage, effects on the individual and on society. Defensive measures and their feasibility. Scenarios for war and peace, proliferation of nuclear weapons material, recent diplomatic history. US Bishops' Pastoral Letter.
STV 20556 Science, Technology & Society
This course introduces the interdisciplinary field of science and technology studies. Our concern will be with science and technology (including medicine) as social and historical, i.e., as human, phenomena. We shall examine the divergent roots of contemporary science and technology, and the similarities and (sometimes surprising) differences in their methods and goals. The central theme of the course will be the ways in which science and technology interact with other aspects of society, including the effects of technical and theoretical innovation in bringing about social change, and the social shaping of science and technology themselves by cultural, economic and political forces. Because science/society interactions so frequently lead to public controversy and conflict, we shall also explore what resources are available to mediate such conflicts in an avowedly democratic society.
STV 30001 Evolution of Scientific Medicine
This course follows the transformation of medicine from the art of healing to the science of disease. What kind of science has medicine become? How has the professionalization of medical practice and the commercialization of medical science altered our experience of being a patient and our understanding of health and illness? These questions will guide our exploration of both historical documents and analytical pieces from the vast scholarship on the social studies of medicine. The exploration of these questions will require us to venture broadly both in time and space. STVF (STV Foundational Course)
STV 30161 History of Television
This course analyzes the history of television, spanning from its roots in radio broadcasting to the latest developments in digital television. In assessing the many changes across this span, the course will cover such topics as why the American television industry developed as a commercial medium in contrast to most other national television industries; how television programming has both reflected and influenced cultural ideologies through the decades; and how historical patterns of television consumption have shifted due to new technologies and social changes. Through studying the historical development of television programs and assessing the industrial, technological, and cultural systems out of which they emerged, the course will piece together the catalysts responsible for shaping this highly influential medium.
STV 30174 American Wilderness
How is a national park different from a national wilderness area, a city park, the lakes at Notre Dame, or your back yard? Why are some considered more wild than others, and why is wilderness such an attractive idea? Writers, historians, painters, photographers, and politicians have described American landscapes as wild to great effect, in concert with identities of gender, class, race, and nation. This class will explore how the idea of wilderness - and the places associated with that idea - have developed during the 19th and 20th centuries. We will examine how wilderness has supported the growth of a national identity but largely failed to recognize the diversity of the American people. Course themes include: 1) developing the wilderness idea; 2) national parks and the problem of wilderness; 3) wilderness experience and politics; and 4) wilderness narratives. Readings will range from Henry David Thoreau and John Muir to Edward Abbey and Jon Krakauer, and there will be a strong visual culture component. For their final project students will choose a wild place of their own to interpret.
STV30201 Intro to Clinical Ethics
The focus of the course will be an examination of the advances in medicine over the last 30 years that have challenged traditional values and ethical norms, and the institutional processes and procedures in place that facilitate decision-making in the health care setting. It will include a sketch of the most recent advances in the various fields of medicine, followed by an examination of the clinical and ethical questions they raise and how they have affected the physician-patient relationship. Note: This course counts as a general elective. Fall and spring.
STV 30203 Compassionate Care and the Medical Profession
This course is designed to provide the theoretical and practical foundation to providing compassionate care in the medical professions. It will provide an introduction to the field of Caring Science and provide the behavioral and attitudinal components to providing effective patient care as well as teaching how practitioners can be balanced in providing patient care. Topics include Caring Science theory, clinician burnout, compassion fatigue, maintaining caring in the encounter with suffering, and physician self-care. While designed specifically for the future medical professional, the course is open as enrollment allows to students in allied helping professions. Class material will include research from medical, psychological, caring science, business, and spiritual sources.
STV 30900 Foundations of Sociological Theory
Sociological theory is the foundation of sociology. Students in this course will learn two things: first, what theorists do and why and, second, how to use fundamental theoretic concepts - such as exploitation and alienation, social structure and solidarity, bureaucracy and charisma - to analyze and explain contemporary society.
STV 33401 Animal Welfare and the Human-Animal Bond
Consider the fact that in six short years, one female dog and her offspring can give birth to 67,000 puppies. In seven years, one cat and her young can produce 420,000 kittens. Three to four million dogs and cats are euthanized each year. It is estimated that there are 60 million feral cats in the US. In a society that considers pets as part of their family, watches Animal Planet, and spends millions of dollars on pet products, it is imperative that we acknowledge and educate ourselves on the issues of over population of pet animals in our society. What is our responsibility to these animals, and how can we solve these pressing problems? The focus of this course will be on animal behavior from an evolutionary perspective. The students will learn to recognize both desirable and undesirable behaviors in pet animals. They will learn how to use evolutionary behavior training methods to alter detrimental behaviors and reinforce those that are advantageous. This course will also cover animal welfare issues, and will intimately and meaningfully connect the state of humans, to that of animals. The students will carry out community research projects of their choice and will immerse themselves in an important issue and generate a product that can help the plight of animals (and therefore humans) in our community.
STV 40319 Self, Society and Environment
This course introduces students to social psychological aspects of the natural environment. Issues considered include interacting with different environments, symbolic transformations of environments, competing accounts, and claims concerning environments. With an overview of basic information, these issues are discussed from the perspectives of individual self and sociocultural institutions. The course touches on alternative ways of envisioning, interacting, and valuing human-environment relations with an eye toward individual and collective change.
STV 40455 Water, Disease & Global Health
The main emphasis of the course will be to study the diseases important to both the developed and developing world. Basic principles of public health, epidemiology, infectious disease microbiology, immunology, and engineering application will be learned utilizing both local and global examples. Particular emphasis will be given to diseases transmitted by water. As a complement to environmental engineering design classes, this class will focus upon the disease agents removed in properly designed municipal water and waste systems.
STV 43101 Telling About Society: Media, Representation, and the Sociology of Knowledge
How do we see the world? How do these modes of representation determine our social reality? How can we use media to create social change? This rigorous seminar interrogates the lenses through which we see, and more importantly make, our world. We open with an interrogation of theories of media, representation, and the sociology of knowledge so as to develop a critical eye towards how these lenses shape our everyday reality. From there we discuss particular modes of representation: photography, ethnography, statistics, journalism, maps, and more. We consider the inherent biases within these ways of seeing, and debate the appropriate uses of these technologies. From this starting point, the course turns its eye to particular historical periods and phenomena: the Great Depression, Vietnam War, the era of HIV/AIDS, and the growing surveillance society. We compare across different media representations of each event to evaluate how different media tell very different kinds of stories about that moment. Ultimately, this class presses students to consider the capacities of these media for encouraging mobilization and change - to redesign the world. To work through these issues, students will engage in fieldwork on a local topic of their choosing. Their final project will consider how different media have shaped our knowledge of a local issue, and in response students will create a final multimedia campaign designed to alter people's "ways of seeing" that topic. In this project, students will persuade their audience using a variety of "lenses" to make their case: from ethnography to documentary film to radio journalism to new media and more.
STV 43120 Humans and Other Apes
A Modern Historical Survey from Scaliger to Peter Singer: One way to improve our understanding of ourselves is to compare ourselves with the animals who most resemble us, in informative, challenging and disturbing ways. In this course, we'll focus on the relationship that has done most to change human self-perceptions. With a focus on Western texts and experiences, but with reference to many other cultures, we'll focus on the problems of how and why human attitudes to other apes have changed since the Middle Ages, and how they have influenced thinking in science, religion, politics, sociology, literature, and ethics.