The Coolest Classes From This Year's Course Catalog
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Politics and Activism

The Coolest Classes From This Year's Course Catalog

Save your summer for later and bask in the glory that is the Yale Course Catalog.

The Coolest Classes From This Year's Course Catalog
Yale Herald

Classes are still months away, but the second we all received the email that the YCPS (Yale College Programs of Study) was out, all our productivity went out the window. Why would you focus on your summer internship when you could browse through all the AMAZING courses offered this coming year. Don’t worry if you haven’t had time to browse thoroughly yet. I’ve pulled the coolest classes from across majors and fields of interest and compiled them for you here. Scroll at your own risk, as prolonged exposure to awesome classes has the ability to make you question your major. Let's face it, we're all at Yale because we're nerds, and these classes might just be our kryptonite.

ART 003a Blue

The cultural and iconic history of the color blue and its role as both a method and a motive for making work in the studio. The word "blue" and its etymological core, evocative connotations, colloquial nuance, and semantic role in different languages and cultures; scientific and sociological issues; blue in film and the fine arts. Projects experiment with writing, collecting, collage, and digital video.

AMST 307B Sports, Civil Rights, and American Leadership

Relations among sports, civil rights movements, and the evolution of American leadership values in the twentieth century. The American sports hero and the struggle for equality of race, gender, and sexual orientation; the cultural effects of major sports phenomena on ideas of leadership and social change. Attention to intellectual and cultural history, literature, and film. Case studies based on key sporting figures and events.

FREN 309A Shopping and the Novel

Representations of shopping and consumerism in French literature, cinema, and culture from the nineteenth century to the present. The politics of window shopping, mythology of French commodities, rhetoric of advertisements, aesthetics of supermarkets, and literary versions of consumer society. An overview of major authors with an introduction to literary theory and sociology.

MMES 156B Israeli Popular Music

Changes in the development of popular music in Israel explored as representations of changing Israeli society and culture. The interaction of music and cultural identity; modern popular music and social conventions; songs of commemoration and heroism; popular representation of the Holocaust; Mizrahi and Arab music; feminism, sexuality, and gender; class and musical consumption; criticism, protest, and globalization.

PLSC 154B Gypsies, Tramps, and Thieves

How groups who have chosen to live outside, or on the margins of, society govern themselves through construction and maintenance of a defining culture, law, and methods of dispute resolution. Cases studies include the Roma in Europe, hoboes and other transient workers in North America, pirates in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and the Sicilian Mafia.

RLST 245B The Age of Akhenaton

Study of the period of the Egyptian pharaoh Akhenaton (reigned 1353–1336 B.C.E.), often termed the Amarna Revolution, from historical, literary, religious, artistic, and archaeological perspectives. Consideration of the wider Egyptian, ancient Near Eastern, African, and Mediterranean contexts. Examination of the international diplomacy, solar theology, and artistic developments of the period. Reading of primary source material in translation.  

PHIL 471A Moral Emotions

The role of emotions and attitudes in the moral life and in moral philosophy. The nature of emotions such as shame, guilt, gratitude, love, and respect; related phenomena such as empathy and sympathy. Emotions' relations to fundamental moral concepts, as well as their epistemological role and capacity to ground moral judgments and facts.

MUSI 012B One Thousand Years of Love Songs

History of the love song in Western culture from the twelfth-century troubadours to contemporary popular hits. Music and the shifting social constructions of desire over the past millennium. The song repertory's engagement with ideas and movements such as courtly love, humanism, romanticism, sexual libertinism, and the LGBT rights movement. Enrollment limited to freshmen. Preregistration required; see under Freshman Seminar Program.  

THST 115B The Physics of Dance

Critical investigation of introductory concepts in physics through the lens of dance. Topics in physics include the normal force, friction, Newton's laws, projectile motion, potential and kinetic energy, and conservation of energy. Topics in dance include aspects of dance history, contemporary artists who engage with science, and the development of movement studies. Class meetings include movement exercises. Prerequisite: basic trigonometry and algebra. Prior dance experience is not required.

CZED 246A Milos Forman and His Films

An in-depth examination of selected films by Milos Forman and representatives of the New Wave, cinéma vérité in Czech filmmaking. Special attention to Forman's artistic and aesthetic development as a Hollywood director in such films as Hair, One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest, Ragtime, and Amadeus. Screenings and discussion in English.

LITR 347A Surveillance, Paranoia, and the Modern State

Cultural and artistic reactions to the collection and control of information and the tension that arises between these practices and liberal claims to privacy rights. Focus on literary and cinematic works. The control of information as manifested in the technologies of behaviorism; the political and economic regimes of totalitarianism; liberal democracy and corporate capitalism; theoretical speculation about the relationship between writers and authors and spectators and their objects.

ENGL 356A The Young Adult Dystopian Novel

Survey of young adult fiction across the twentieth century, with a focus on American writers. Topics include environmental apocalypse, biopolitics, youth indebtedness, juvenile sentencing, sexual violence, and racial profiling. Creative and critical writing components.

CGSC 304A The Mental Lives of Babies and Animals

Interdisciplinary exploration of the cognitive, social, and emotional capacities of creatures lacking language and culture. The extent to which our complex psychology is unique to mature humans; the relative richness of a mental life without language or culture. Some attention to particular human populations such as children with autism and adults with language disorders.

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