Course Descriptions

Fall 2015 Honors Courses

HONORS Core curriculum

ENGL-H121-F01 “Violence and Videogames”
T. Welsh
MWF 11:30am-12:20pm
Rather than determine if games make players violent, this seminar investigates the historical circumstances, cultural assumptions, and social practices that make the relationship between violence and videogames a complex and essential question for the digital age. Videogame playing required; previous experience and specialized hardware are not.

ENGL-H121-F02 “21st Century Slavery and Abolition”
L. Murphy
TR 11:00am-12:15pm
Though most people think that slavery ended in 1865, there are nonetheless 27 million people enslaved around the world today, despite vigorous efforts of activists to stamp out this practice. Focusing on the accounts of survivors and activists, both in texts and in virtual classroom visits, this course examines the problem of modern slavery and explores opportunities for students to participate in its eradication.

HIST-H121-F33 “Creating Medieval Monsters”
S. Butler
MWF 9:30am-10:20am
Since 9/11, persecution of the “other" has been a theme of daily life in twenty-first century America, where random events can trigger persecution that very quickly spirals out of control. To illustrate the common roots of persecution, this course examines a much earlier period of demonization:  the High Middle Ages, where communities of Christians, feeling threatened by both external and internal forces, protected themselves by turning those at the margins into “monsters”--Jews, lepers, Muslims, heretics, homosexuals, women, and others.

HIST-H121-F34 “Rebellion and Revolution in China”
R. Thum
TR 2:00pm-3:15pm
China is often mistakenly portrayed as a place of conformity and respect for authority.  This course shatters that myth by exploring cultures of rebellion and revolution, starting with the China’s latest
uprisings and protests and tracing traditions of disobedience backward in time through music, visual art, literature, artifacts, and historical writing.  Much of the course will focus on the modern period, but we will also examine the roots of China’s cultures of rebellion, which reach back over three millennia.  Since China represents one quarter of the world’s population, no understanding of the meaning of revolution can be complete without a study of China’s revolutionary thought and art.  By drawing comparisons with revolutionary traditions from other parts of the world, the course invites students to re-examine their own notions of rebellion and revolution in light of this often overlooked but globally significant tradition.

HIST-H121-F35 “Rebellion and Revolution in China”
R. Thum
TR 3:30pm-4:45pm

HONS-H121-F33 “Persuasion in Public Address: A Rhetorical Perspective”
S. Yavneh Klos
TR 11:00am-12:15pm
This class examines the art of public persuasion in historic letters, proclamations, speeches and videos by identifying rhetorical motives, strategies of argument and style, and the effects of public address on particular audiences.  Texts (provided online) will include:
Aristotle's Rhetoric  in Greek: Ῥητορική  is an ancient Greek treatise on the art of persuasion, dating from the 4th century BC ; The Rhetorica ad Herennium, formerly attributed to Cicero but of unknown authorship, is the oldest surviving Latin book on rhetoric, dating from the late 80s BC; Elizabeth I Speech to the Troops 1588; A Declaration by the Representatives of the United Colonies of North-America, Now Met in Congress at Philadelphia, Setting Forth the Causes and Necessity of Their Taking Up Arms - July 6th, 1775; George Washington, “Resignation Speech” December 23, 1784; Abraham Lincoln, “The Gettysburg Address”  November 19, 1863; Sojourner Truth, "Ain't I a Woman" speech; Chief Joseph Surrender Speech 1877; Theodore Roosevelt, “Duties of American Citizenship” January 26, 1883; Winston Churchill We shall fight on the beaches 1940; Checkers Speech - Richard Nixon September 23, 1952; Letter from a Birmingham Jail  Martin Luther King, Jr., 16 April 1963; Edward M. Kennedy, Address to the People of Massachusetts on Chappaquiddick, 25 July 1969; Against Going to War with Iraq by Barack Obama, Wednesday, October 2, 2002 , Chicago anti-Iraq war rally;  Seth Godin - How to Get Your Ideas to Spread -- May 17, 2007 and Simon Sinek– How Great Leaders Inspire Action  -- Aug 16, 2010.

BA  -H415-033 “Honors Business Ethics”
N. Capaldi
TR 3:30pm-4:45pm
In this course we seek to clarify the nature and role of commercial activity in a modern technological market society.  We are especially concerned with the norms internal to present commercial practice and how those norms relate to (complement, conflict with, are in tension with, etc.) a variety of external ethical and religious perspectives.  We seek to identify the global, environmental, economic, political, legal, and cultural implication of modern market societies.

PHIL-H215-033 "Environmental Ethics and Intergenerational Justice”
J. MacClellan
MWF 2:30pm-3:20pm
This honors course in environmental ethics covers philosophical theories of our moral obligations regarding the natural environment and their practical application to real-world environmental problems. Like the natural and social worlds we inhabit, there is much diversity in environmental ethics; this course highlights both the tensions and points of agreement between these different perspectives at the level of individual moral agents and at the level of public policy. The course surveys core issues in environmental ethics, including deep ecology, animal rights, and wilderness conservation, while emphasizing intergenerational justice and its application to long-term environmental challenges such as climate change, biodiversity loss, and sustainability.

HONS-H394-033 Community Engagement Portfolio
N.Yavneh/T. Gallaway

HIST-H396-033 “Incarceration in America”
A. Howard
MWF 2:30pm-3:20pm
For many scholars and prison abolitionists, Louisiana represents the belly of the beast. The state earned this notoriety by imprisoning more people per capita than any other territory or nation in the world. Through the careful interrogation of primary and secondary sources, Incarceration in America will investigate the social, political, and economic factors contributing to the growth and development of the prison industrial complex. Special attention will be paid to intersectional identities (race, gender, class, sexuality, and immigration status) and activism, centering the experience and voices of currently and formerly incarcerated individuals.

SOCI-H396-033 “Violence and Democracy”
L. Voigt
TR 2:00pm-3:15pm
Using the lens of the social scientific perspective and analytical tools, this course provides a broad, interdisciplinary understanding of the complexities and controversies/debates surrounding two major social problems facing democratic societies: violence and human rights violations. Resting on the premise that the concepts of violence and human rights are not unrelated, this course not only examines the relationship between violence and human rights, but also engenders the idea that greater commitment to human rights is the most effective antidote to violence and ultimately to preserving democratic values and principles. Drawing upon sociology, criminology, anthropology, psychology, political science, economics, and history as well as professional specialty areas including criminal justice, law, and public health, Violence and Democracy is designed to encourage students to develop an appreciation for scientifically constructed knowledge and to apply critical thinking and analytical techniques in assessing various databases, theories of causation, social policies, and solutions related to violence.  The relationship between science and social policy as well as questions associated with the ethics and politics of scientific theory and research related to violence is considered on state, national, and international levels. Academic and theoretical knowledge will be combined with practical applications and real-life experiences in a community-engagement learning project, with special emphasis devoted to larger social issues connected with violence and democratic societies, such as differential life chances, poverty, gender and racial inequality, and the consequences of changes taking place in the world.

HONS-H491-033 Honors Thesis
N. Yavneh
 

CREATIVE ARTS AND CULTURES

CHEM-H245-033 “Chemistry and Art”
K. Crago
R 5:00pm-7:35pm
An advanced Honors lecture course designed for non-science majors. This course represents an integration of materials concerning both Fine arts and Chemistry. It discusses the synergistic relationship between the development of chemical processes and their effects on the methods of artistic production. In pursuit of this goal this course attempts to integrate the Chemical principles of matter and energy with the techniques and experiences of Art. The course is structured on a series of instructor lectures, demonstrations, and student presentations and projects. A few of the topics to be discussed include the history of the interaction of Art and Chemistry from ancient times to the present, the basic chemistry of materials and techniques used in the development of pieces of art (i.e. sculpture, painting, ceramics, etc.), the importance of instrumentation in the restoration and the authentication of pieces of art as well as investigations pertinent to the importance of art as an expression of the times.

CLHU-H295-033 “Art and Mythology”
C. Rodriguez
MWF 11:30am-12:20pm
Most surveys of Greek mythology are based on literary sources, since these are the principle repositories of ancient myths.  But Greek art is also a rich source and, as such, deserves to be studied in its own right.  The way a story is shown may develop and change over a period of time so that a depiction from 580 BCE may be radically different from one in 400 BCE.  Sometimes art preserves stories for which there is no literary source, and sometimes it gives details to a story that are different from those in literary versions.  The depiction of myth in the visual arts uses a “language” quite different from literary languages, and it is a language that must be learned from careful observation. This course is an introduction of Greek myth as it appears in surviving ancient visual arts.  We shall begin with a survey of the types of ancient sources that have come down to us.  Then we shall examine in some depth the development in art of two myths as a demonstration of a method for such studies, and consider some of the more important myths.  Finally, students will have the opportunity to research and apply the methods for examining Greek myth in art through individual projects.

GREK-H100-033 “Honors Beginning Greek I”
K. Rosenbecker
TR 11:00am-12:15pm
Honors Beginning Greek (GREK H295) is fast-paced and engaging version of first semester ancient Greek, ideal for students who are interested in the Classical world, for students who are preparing for a career in the sciences, or for students who are simply looking to enrich their appreciation of how language works.   The course will take students through the foundational elements of ancient Greek--the unique writing system, core vocabulary, and principles of sentence structure--with an emphasis on understanding grammar and translating with accuracy and confidence.  Honors Beginning Greek features traditional and digital instructional materials and introductions to the basic tools of ancient Greek scholarship.  The course also provides students with a solid background in understanding how languages, even created "languages" like formal logic or math, organize themselves. Moreover, the course provides students with the chance to become familiar with the root words that form the backbone of our modern scientific terminology. Honors Beginning Greek is the first step in preparing students to read New Testament Greek and to read the Greek of Homer, Sophocles, and Plato, with readings in these original texts beginning at the end of the second semester.  Free tutoring for Honors Beginning Greek is offered through the Classical Studies Department.  Honors Beginning Greek may be counted as part of either the language requirement or as an Honors requirement; please check with your advisor for more details on requirements.  For more information about Honors Beginning Greek, please contact Dr. Rosenbecker at krosenbe@loyno.edu.

LATN-H100-033 “Honors Beginning Latin I”
C. Rodriguez
MWF 10:30am-11:20am
Language tells us many things about a culture, not only in what people have to say but in how they say it.  This course introduces students to the world of the ancient Romans through an examination of their language. Because Latin is no longer a spoken language, its study becomes an exercise in symbolic logic.  Through the use of inflection (the basic elements of morphology), Latin is able to avoid the difficulties of vagueness, equivocation and confusion of ordinary languages, like English, by removing the ambiguity that can accompany ordinary speech. And it makes clear even highly complex relationships and nuances between words and ideas within lengthy passages of prose and poetry that simply are not possible in English. The first thing students will do is learn the elements (morphology) of Latin – the inflections of verbs, nouns, and adjectives – and the syntax – how these elements fit together.  The second thing they will do is translate this “symbolic” language into ordinary speech.  Finally, they will apply the morphology and syntax of Latin and translate English into in this “new, artificial language”.

 

ENGLISH/Literature

ENGL-H335-001 “Post-Colonial Literature Honors”
L. Murphy
TR 3:30pm-4:45pm
My course for next term is Postcolonial Literature.  This class will include literature written in the second half of the twentieth century, as countries all over the world gained their independence from colonial governance.  We'll read texts from all over the global south, including Africa, the Caribbean, Latin America, and India.  We'll spend the first half of the semester looking at how the "empire wrote back," how they created counter-narratives that overturned the colonial ways of looking at them and created their own unique narrative forms.  In the second half of the semester, we'll abandon  the backwards-gazing critique of colonialism (as did the global south to a great extent), to study the increasingly cosmopolitan turn in postcolonial writing (at least what gets published in the U.S.) and we'll think about what's next for literature of the global south.  We will definitely read the big guns: Achebe, Rushdie, Cesaire, Marquez, but we will also likely read Jamaica Kincaid from Antigua, Mukoma wa Ngugi from Kenya, and Aravind Adiga from India.  Mukoma wa Ngugi will visit Loyola in the fall and speak to our class.

ENGL-H487-033 “Contemporary Critical Issues”
C. Shaberg
TR 11:00am-12:15pm
My fall class (cross-listed with English) is called “Contemporary Critical Issues: Object Lessons” and it launches from my current project, a book & essay series on the hidden lives of ordinary things. The course is an upper level course focusing on critical theory, cultural studies, and contemporary nonfiction. The course has a hands-on component involving editing and publishing: we will read and discuss manuscripts of books in progress for the series. Interested students can learn more about the series here: http://whatisliterature.blogspot.com/2014/02/object-lessons-backstory.html, here: http://essaydaily.blogspot.com/2014/02/ian-bogost-chris-schaberg-object.... and here: http://objectsobjectsobjects.com

ENGL-H496-034 “From Harlem to Hip Hop”
T. Melancon
TR 3:30pm-4:45pm
 

HISTORY

HIST-H338-033 “Civil War and Reconstruction”
J. Nystrom
MWF 1:30pm-2:20pm

HIST-H295-035 “American Folk Culture”
M. Fernandez
TR 9:30am-10:45am
This Honors Seminar will explore the dimensions of American Folk Culture from a historical perspective. The seminar will begin in the colonial period and end in the twenty-first century. The course will be conducted as a project-centered research seminar. We'll develop our topics and projects together in class as the semester progresses.

HIST-H396-033 “Incarceration in America”
A. Howard
MWF 2:30pm-3:20pm
For many scholars and prison abolitionists, Louisiana represents the belly of the beast. The state earned this notoriety by imprisoning more people per capita than any other territory or nation in the world. Through the careful interrogation of primary and secondary sources, Incarceration in America will investigate the social, political, and economic factors contributing to the growth and development of the prison industrial complex. Special attention will be paid to intersectional identities (race, gender, class, sexuality, and immigration status) and activism, centering the experience and voices of currently and formerly incarcerated individuals.

 

MATHEMATICS

MATH-H257-033 “Calculus I Honors”
M. Kelly
MWF 8:15am-9:20am lecture and lab

MATH-H295-033 “Honors Mathematics”
R. Tucci
MWF 9:30am-10:20am
This course presents the development of Mathematics in from a cultural, historical, and scientific point of view. Emphasis is placed on the role and influence of Mathematics in the development of civilization. Students will have the opportunity to study interesting topics which are not usually presented in undergraduate Mathematics courses. Topics include Euclidean and non-Euclidean geometry, fractals, number theory, history of mathematics, and mathematical personalities.

 

NATURAL SCIENCE

BIOL-H295-033 “Honors Sociobiology”
J. Gauthier
MWF 1:30pm-2:20pm
The focus of this course is an examination of the evolutionary basis of human social behavior. We will begin the course by reviewing the fundamentals of evolutionary theory, including the origin of the first replicating molecule and how this unit eventually encoded proteins that facilitated propagation of the former, ultimately leading to what we call a living, “purposeful” organism. We will then examine the genetic basis of animal behavior and begin our exploration into the evolution of human social behavior. Although there are superficial cultural differences, the human species is unified by genetically based adaptive traits that have evolved through natural selection. Scientific approaches to distinguish cultural vs. genetic based traits, including comparison of modern and traditional human societies with prehistoric humans, other hominids and our close relatives the chimpanzees, will be discussed. We will examine the major evolutionary controversies regarding individual (selfish) vs. group (altruistic) selection and how multilevel selection may explain the duality of our nature. Students are encouraged to think critically as we draw on information from multiple disciplines in this sociobiological investigation of what we are and where we are going.

CHEM-A105/ CHEM-H107-023 “General Chemistry w/ Honors Lab”
Any professor for lecture, Lab w/ A. Duggar
Any section for lecture, Lab W 1:30pm-4:30pm

CHEM-H245-033 “Chemistry and Art”
K. Crago
R 5:00pm-7:35pm
An advanced Honors lecture course designed for non-science majors. This course represents an integration of materials concerning both Fine arts and Chemistry. It discusses the synergistic relationship between the development of chemical processes and their effects on the methods of artistic production. In pursuit of this goal this course attempts to integrate the Chemical principles of matter and energy with the techniques and experiences of Art. The course is structured on a series of instructor lectures, demonstrations, and student presentations and projects. A few of the topics to be discussed include the history of the interaction of Art and Chemistry from ancient times to the present, the basic chemistry of materials and techniques used in the development of pieces of art (i.e. sculpture, painting, ceramics, etc.), the importance of instrumentation in the restoration and the authentication of pieces of art as well as investigations pertinent to the importance of art as an expression of the times.

PHYS-H330-033 “Faith, Science, Religion Honors”
J. Carter, SJ
TR 9:30am-10:45am

PSYC-H295-033 “Science of Sexual Orientation: A Psychobiological Developmental Approach”
L. Lewis
MW 3:30pm-3:45pm
What causes a child to grow up gay or straight? This course is an intensive study of sexuality as the result of interactions between genes, sex hormones, and the cells of the developing body and brain. The main objectives of this course are (1) to familiarize students with the content and methods of psychobiological research on sexual orientation, (2) to encourage thinking about what these methods reveal about sexual attraction and its underlying processes, and (3) to provide tools to become more informed consumers of psychological research and its application to contemporary issues such as same-sex marriage, adoption by gay couples, and societal views on sexual attraction. 

 

PHILOSOPHY

PHIL-H215-033 "Environmental Ethics and Intergenerational Justice”
J. MacClellan
MWF 2:30pm-3:20pm
This honors course in environmental ethics covers philosophical theories of our moral obligations regarding the natural environment and their practical application to real-world environmental problems. Like the natural and social worlds we inhabit, there is much diversity in environmental ethics; this course highlights both the tensions and points of agreement between these different perspectives at the level of individual moral agents and at the level of public policy. The course surveys core issues in environmental ethics, including deep ecology, animal rights, and wilderness conservation, while emphasizing intergenerational justice and its application to long-term environmental challenges such as climate change, biodiversity loss, and sustainability.

PHIL-H295-033 “Philosophy of Star Trek”
R. Brice
MWF 10:30am-11:20am
Boldly go where no class has gone before…a philosophical analysis of Star Trek. In this class we will consider topics in ethics, epistemology, metaphysics, logic, and language that emerge in Star Trek. Questions include: Is it always better to be ruled by logic than by emotion? Is a Universal Translator even possible? Is Lieutenant Commander Data a person? Do we have a moral duty toward other living things…including aliens?

PHIL-H295-034 “Travels in Medieval Philosophy”
M. Gossiaux
TR 3:30pm-4:45pm
In the popular imagination, the Middle Ages are often caricatured as the Dark Ages, the period when  superstition and ignorance reigned over the human mind. In reality, however, the Middle Ages were a time of quite vigorous intellectual activity. Like the Ancient Greeks before them, medieval philosophers  endeavored to provide a rational account of the world of human experience. In this course, we examine some of the philosophical controversies and theories of the medievals. Among the topics to be studied are: the problem of universals; the relationship between philosophy and religion; the problem of divine foreknowledge and human freedom; the controversies concerning the eternity of the world; and the nature and limits of human knowledge. Readings will be drawn from some of the key thinkers of the period, such as Boethius, Peter Abelard, Anselm, Avicenna,  Averroes, Thomas Aquinas, Duns Scotus, and William of Ockham.

 

RELIGIOUS STUDIES

RELS-H260-001 "Introduction to Islam Honors"
A. Kahn
MW 3:30pm-4:45pm
This course will provide students with an introduction to the historical and intellectual development of the broader Islamic tradition. Introduction to Islam is intended to acquaint students with major themes contributing towards the evolution of Islam as a religion, since the time of its emergence to the present. Students will explore various expressions of Muslim beliefs and practices, as well as aspects of Islamic theology, philosophy, and ethics, in a manner which highlights the challenges confronting the scholarly study of Islam. The historical progression will illustrate the transitions in religious thought of different eras, including recent developments affecting aspects of contemporary Islam.  The topics covered in the course will demonstrate the diversity of the Islamic tradition and familiarize students with the appropriate methodologies involved in the academic study of religion.

RELS-H295-033 “Cults and Religions”
C. Wessinger
TR 2:00pm-3:15pm
The cultural debate about whether “cults” are religions will be used to explore issues and methodologies in the academic study of religions. This research seminar will acquaint students with the primary scholarly categories of religious phenomena, which are relevant to analyzing not only alternative religions, but also mainstream religious traditions. Issues explored in the course include: whether the “brainwashing” theory is scientifically valid; the significance of millennial beliefs in many new religious movements; the role of charisma and types of leadership in new religions; gender roles in alternative religions; unconventional religions and violence; conceptions of the Divine in new movements that are different from mainstream beliefs about God; the processes involved in the maturation of new religious movements; and the ways members of alternative religions address the tensions between their group and the wider society. Students will critically evaluate information on cults or new religious movements through reading and discussion of case studies with the class; writing a mini-review essay (due at mid-term) on an autobiography and a scholarly book on a particular alternative religion; research on a topic relating to a new religious movement for a term paper and class presentation due toward the end of the semester.

RELS-H330-033 “Faith, Science, Religion Honors”
J. Carter, SJ
TR 9:30am-10:45am

 

SOCIAL SCIENCE

PSYC-H295-033 “Science of Sexual Orientation: A Psychobiological Developmental Approach”
L. Lewis
MW 3:30pm-3:45pm
What causes a child to grow up gay or straight? This course is an intensive study of sexuality as the result of interactions between genes, sex hormones, and the cells of the developing body and brain. The main objectives of this course are (1) to familiarize students with the content and methods of psychobiological research on sexual orientation, (2) to encourage thinking about what these methods reveal about sexual attraction and its underlying processes, and (3) to provide tools to become more informed consumers of psychological research and its application to contemporary issues such as same-sex marriage, adoption by gay couples, and societal views on sexual attraction. 

SOCI-H396-033 “Violence and Democracy”
L. Voigt
TR 2:00pm-3:15pm
Using the lens of the social scientific perspective and analytical tools, this course provides a broad, interdisciplinary understanding of the complexities and controversies/debates surrounding two major social problems facing democratic societies: violence and human rights violations. Resting on the premise that the concepts of violence and human rights are not unrelated, this course not only examines the relationship between violence and human rights, but also engenders the idea that greater commitment to human rights is the most effective antidote to violence and ultimately to preserving democratic values and principles. Drawing upon sociology, criminology, anthropology, psychology, political science, economics, and history as well as professional specialty areas including criminal justice, law, and public health, Violence and Democracy is designed to encourage students to develop an appreciation for scientifically constructed knowledge and to apply critical thinking and analytical techniques in assessing various databases, theories of causation, social policies, and solutions related to violence.  The relationship between science and social policy as well as questions associated with the ethics and politics of scientific theory and research related to violence is considered on state, national, and international levels. Academic and theoretical knowledge will be combined with practical applications and real-life experiences in a community-engagement learning project, with special emphasis devoted to larger social issues connected with violence and democratic societies, such as differential life chances, poverty, gender and racial inequality, and the consequences of changes taking place in the world.

HONS-H295-033 “Western Legal Tradition”
R. Rabalais
MW 3:30pm-4:45pm
This Honors Seminar will focus on recurrent issues encountered within the legal tradition of Western Europe and North America, from the time of ancient Greece and Rome to the present. These recurrent issues will be explored by carefully examining each week selections from the seminal documents of the Western Legal Tradition. 
 

Course Description Archives »