Providing a historical background, including an examination of classic texts of war such as the Bhagavad Gita and Sun Tzu's The Art of War, this course explores major themes within the framework of law, war and empire such as just war, civilized vs. savage warfare, military tribunals, treatment of prisoners of war, the use of torture, genocide and war-crimes, and the impact of new technologies on warfare.
In this course, students will examine cult classics such as Geek Love, The Secret History, Confederacy of Dunces, and The White Boy Shuffle as they devise and begin to write their own cult classics.
A ghost story might be a gothic psychological tale (Henry James’s “The Turn of the Screw”) or a contemporary experiment in narrative (Samantha Schweblin’s Fever Dream). A horror story might feature a supernatural monster such as a vampire (Octavia Butler’s The Fledgling), or a heterosexual marriage (Carmen Maria Machado’s “The Husband Stitch”).
This course will focus on literature and other artworks that attempt to articulate experience beyond the threshold of what can be directly apprehended or recounted: the uncanny, the mysterious, the terrifying, the mystical, the unreal, the irrational, the terrifying and the haunting: all that which is lost or repressed or simply cannot be articulated through conventional narrative and conventional artistic forms, including works by Kafka, Rilke, Stein, Sebald, Rhys, Fitzgerald, Beckett, Breton; texts by Freud, Benjamin, Bataille; films from Hitchcock, Tarkovsky, Bunuel; visual art and music.
Phenomenology is most commonly used to refer to a movement in 20th century philosophy, the central figures of which were Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Maurice Merleau-Ponty.
A comprehensive treatment of existentialist philosophy, including the work of Kierkegaard and Nietzsche, and the contemporary work of Heidegger and Sartre.
This course introduces the key debates that have shaped modern philosophy through a close reading of philosophers ranging from Montaigne and Descartes to Kant, Hegel and Nietzsche representing a variety of positions from the empiricist and rationalist to the skeptical and nihilist.