CHASS Connect: 2009-2010 Sequences

(Fulfills Political Science, Literature and Fine Arts)

These three courses will introduce students to theories of human rights, to concrete problems centered in 20th century China, and to models of "political" theater. At the culmination of the year, students will adapted their collected knowledge and create original stage performances.

Fall 2009
Professor Pion-Berlin
Introduction to Human rights

This course will introduce students to the subject of human rights. We will first discuss the meaning and evolution of the term and just how universal the concept is. We will deal with moral dilemmas and specifically whether there are any conditions under which human rights violations are ever justified. Then we will explore who the perpetrators of human rights abuses are and why certain groups are singled out for victimization more often than others. We will conclude with a look at the fight against human rights abuses and what those who are seeking truth and justice are up against.

Winter 2010
Professor Link
Human Rights in China

This class will deal with concrete problems of human rights centered in contemporary China. First, we will look at human-rights cases in the late Mao Zedong Era (1957-1976) as they appear in literary works. Next we will consider some real life cases associated with the "Tiananmen Massacre" of 1989. Finally, we will look at the achievements, problems, and challenges of the human rights movement inside China today.

Spring 2010
Professor Hinds
Human Rights and Theater

You will gain an introduction to the fundamentals of the stage: Acting, directing, design; as well as the fundamentals of storytelling: plot characters, dialogue, theme, music, and spectacle. The class will then use models of "political" theatre including Theater of the Oppressed, Agit-Prop Theater, as well as Hip Hop Theater as the creative foundation in the development of the original stage performances which will serve as the culmination of this year-long sequence of classes.