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Matter, Community, Environment

CHUM 305
Fall 2015
Section: 01  
Crosslisting: ENGL 302, SISP 303, COL 303
Certificates: Social, Cultural, and Critical Theory

In recent years, it has become increasingly difficult to consider human communities without also considering questions of "nature" or "environment." Actor-network theory condemns nature/society dualisms; ecological theory argues that there is indeed no "nature" or "society"--only the Anthropocene; and, drawing from the former two positions, Object Oriented Ontology conceives of ideas (such as "community" or "society") as objects and ecological actors. In this seminar, we will consider various approaches taken in recent years to thinking about our relations to the worlds we inhabit. We will attempt to think not only outside a focus on "us" as humans in the first place, but even outside a focus on sentient life or life in general. Examining theories of matter, community, and environment, we will discuss and analyze work by philosophers, evolutionary biologists, literary scholars, and sociologists, among others. We will pay special attention to how theorists and critics are blurring the boundaries between nature and society, environment and community, life and matter. In addition to class participation and a series of brief reading responses, students will be required to produce a final paper dealing with any topic related to the course.
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: HA CHUM
Course Format: SeminarGrading Mode: Graded
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (COL)(SISP)(SISP-ScieDblMjr)
Past Enrollment Probability: 90% or above

Last Updated on FEB-22-2024
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