Spring 2019 Undergraduate Classes


Comparative Studies 1100 Introduction to the Humanities: Cross-Cultural Perspectives

Multiple Sections

Explores the role of literature and the arts in constructing, maintaining, and questioning the values and beliefs of diverse cultures and historical periods; topics vary.  GE Literature and Diversity: Global Studies. Honors version.

*Other sections of 1100 can be found on buckeye link

Comparative Studies 2099 The Question of Comparative Studies 

Mon 5:20-6:15PM | Hagerty 451 | Isaac Weiner

This course offers an introduction to the Comparative Studies major. It is designed to help students to take advantage of curricular, research, and advising opportunities; to manage the particular challenges of independent and interdisciplinary work; to link classroom work to social and political engagement with relevant communities; and to prepare for life after graduation.This course is graded S/U.

Comparative Studies 2101 Literature and Society

TuThu 11:10-12:30PM | Campbell Hall 335 | Theresa Delgadillo

In this course we will study literature that addresses social and political themes by imagining characters defined, constrained, or enmeshed in social and political systems. We will read literature (novel, poetry, memoir) and view films that explore what it means to live in societies where one's race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, citizenship status, migration history, economic status, or geographic location might impact one's access to rights and resources. In the study of literature and film, we will pay attention, in equal measure to, on the one hand form, shape, language, structure, and, on the other hand, to context and content, because both are relevant to deciphering the social engagements of a text. Questions we might pursue include: How do we weigh individual interests, desires and needs against those of social groups or society generally? Is writing a social or political act? Does society grant the same privileges and opportunities to all? What is social? What is political? What is literary?

GE lit and diversity global studies

Comparative Studies 2103 Literature and the Self

TuThu 9:35-10:55AM | Mendenhall 125 | Lucia Bortoli

As citizens of the world, we regard ourselves as unique and irreplaceable individuals; we feel we “alone” know ourselves, can speak about ourselves and can attest to our own authenticity. But when did we begin to feel this way? How did we develop such a heightened sense of self? And do we share similar self-understanding with people from other cultures in the world?

In this course, we will trace the development of subjectivity in history and in the world through specific pieces of Western and Eastern literature in the form of confessional writing, essays, memoirs, short stories, poetry, and films. In an interdisciplinary manner, we will rely on religious, philosophical, psychological, medical, biological and literary approaches to understand complex and multifaceted realities of the self. Engaging in discussions on issues about the environment, race, gender, class, health, and citizenship, we will appreciate a variety of human beliefs and norms affecting human self-perception.

 GE Literature and Diversity: Global Studies. Honors version.

Comparative Studies 2104 Literature, Science, and Technology

MWF 11:30-12:25PM | Bolz Hall 118 | Jason Payne

Study of relationships among literature, science, and technology; analysis of representations of science and technology in literature and film of diverse cultures and historical periods. GE Literature and Diversity: Global Studies. Honors version.

Comparative Studies 2105 Literature and Ethnicity

WF 9:35AM-10:55AM | Jennings Hall 140 | Maurice Stevens

Study of relationships between literature and ethnicity; analysis of concepts of ethnicity as represented in literature and film of diverse cultures and historical periods. GE Literature and Diversity: Social Diversity in the U.S.

Comparative Studies 2214 Introduction to Sexuality Studies

 TuTh 9:35AM-10:55AM| McPherson Lab 1035 | Marie Franco

Where does “sexuality” come from? How do sexual identities, practices, and desires shape our lives? How did sexuality become politicized? From the state’s regulation of sexuality to the formation of underground communities around taboo pleasures, we will explore sexuality’s key role in a range of 20th- and 21st-century issues.

Comparative Studies 2220 Introduction to South Asian Studies

TBA  | TBA  | Ila Nager

A multi-disciplinary introduction to South Asia's geographical, political, cultural, and religious contexts and connections.  Cross-listed in NELC. GE Cultures and Ideas and Diversity: Global Studies.

Comparative Studies 2264 Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

Multiple Sections

Introduction to the analysis of popular culture texts, with special emphasis on the relationship between popular culture studies and literary studies. Cross-listed in English. GE Cultures and Ideas.

Comparative Studies 2301 Introduction to World Literature

TuThu 9:35AM-10:55AM | Dreese Lab 305 | Eleanor Paynter

What is “world literature”? Is it the “best of the best” of all the national literatures in the world? Works that people everywhere claim as their cultural inheritance? Is it what we call any literary work once it travels beyond the context in which it was originally written? Does world literature enrich our lives through cultural exchange? And what about the realities of writers in many parts of the world who can only access a significant audience by writing in English or producing works that “travel well” via translation?

We will tackle these questions through our discussion of literatures of the world in their historical and social contexts. We will read twentieth-century texts from the literary traditions of five geopolitical areas: the Middle East; Africa; Asia; Latin and Central America/the Caribbean; and Europe/North America. Student presentations will introduce additional examples of literary texts from different time periods.

In addition to engaged in-class and online discussion, course assignments include short papers and a presentation. All assignments will help you pursue the course goals and participate deeply in a community of learners.

Comparative Studies 2321 Introduction to Asian American Studies

WF 12:45-2:05PM | Macquigg Lab 161 | Martin Ponce

Have you ever wondered where the term “Asian American” comes from or who it refers to? Are you interested in exploring when, how, and why Asians have immigrated to the United States? Do you want to know more about how Asian Americans have been positioned, and have positioned themselves, within the U.S. racial landscape? Then check out Introduction to Asian American Studies!

The course will begin by examining the emergence of Asian American studies as a direct result of student activism in the late 1960s. We will then move back in time and consider Asian labor migrations during the 19th and early 20th centuries; turn to the impacts of U.S. wars in Asia (Philippine-American War, WWII, the Korean War, the Viet Nam War); then focus on contemporary Asian American issues. These latter may include the “model minority” myth, tensions between post-1965 immigrant generations and their descendants, “tiger” parenting and mental health, transnational and transracial adoption, interracial and LGBTQ relationships, mixed-race and undocumented status, and political activisms in the wake of 9/11/2001 and in the era of Black Lives Matter. We will read, watch, analyze, and discuss scholarly texts (history, social science, cultural criticism), literature, graphic narratives, documentaries, and feature films.

GE in Cultures and Ideas, and Social Diversity in the U.S.

Comparative Studies 2340 Introduction to Cultures of Science and Technology

TuThu 12:45-2:05PM | Ramseyer Hall 100 | Noah Tamarkin

Critical analysis of the multiple relations of science to society, with emphasis on knowledge, power, authority, values, and ethics. GE Cultures and Ideas and Diversity: Global Studies.

Comparative Studies 2350 Introduction to Folklore

TuThu 12:45-2:05PM | Cockins Hall 312 | Sydney Varajon

Folklore is the culture that people make for themselves. Folklore is cherished by families or danced on the streets by unruly young people. The forms of folklore circulate from person to person and group to group, adapting to every change of situation; they lend themselves to a wide array of social purposes. We will look at a range of genres from both US and international settings, including oral/verbal, customary, and material folklore. For example, we will consider how domestic art reveals aspects of gendered work, or how contemporary legends about food, illness, or public disasters both reflect and constitute public opinion of ethnic, racial, or sexual minority groups. Students who take this course will learn how to put their knowledge of expressive culture to real-world use, such as listening for and attending to cultural differences in educational and public sector contexts.

We will also learn how to conduct an ethnographic project—from collecting data, interviewing, and transcribing, to analyzing and archiving the material. Your final project will include original ethnographic research on a group, a practice, a place or a genre of expressive culture that you have access to face-to-face. Potential topics include: dorm life rituals, jokes and pranks, traditions of rural Ohio (farming, forestry, hunting), yard art, or local festivals and foodways. This course fulfills requirements for the GE in Cultures and Ideas.

*Other sections of 2350 can be found on buckeye link

Comparative Studies 2367.04 Science and Technology in American Culture

WF 11:10-12:30PM | Enarson 015 | Nancy Jesser

Role of science and technology in contemporary American society; their relationship to human values; sources of concern about their impact; evaluation of selected issues. GE Writing and Communication: Level 2 and Cultures and Ideas and Diversity: Social Diversity in the US. Honors version.

*Other sections of 2367.04 can be found on buckeye link

Comparative Studies 2367.07 Religious Diversity in the U.S.

MWF 10:20-11:15AM | Smith Lab 2186 | Amanda Randhawa

Exploration of the concept of religious freedom and the position of minority religious groups in American society. GE Writing and Communication: Level 2 and Cultures and Ideas and Diversity: Social Diversity in the US.

Comparative Studies 2367.08 American Identity in the World

MWF 11:30-12:25PM | Enarson 240 | Zeynep Aydogdu

American culture viewed from inside and from the perspective of foreign cultures, as seen in literature, film, art, music, journalism, folklore, and popular culture. GE Writing and Communication: Level 2 and Cultures and Ideas and Diversity: Social Diversity in the US. Honors version.

Comparative Studies 2420 American Food Cultures

WF 12:45-2:05PM | Ramseyer Hall 009 | Robert Livingston

Historical perspective on the development of the American food system, including associated discourses and cultures, leading to exploration of contemporary concerns about industrial food, the American diet, and the politics surrounding these issues.

GE cultures and ideas and diversity soc div in the US course.

Comparative Studies 3052 Mediterranean Voyages: Migration and Travel

WF 9:35-10:55AM | Hagerty Hall 062

An exploration of human movement in the contemporary Mediterranean: tourism vs. migration. Survey of the historical varieties of travel in the Mediterranean and the examination of contemporary written and filmed narratives of migration in the Mediterranean zone.

Prereq: English 1110 or equiv. Not open to students with credit for Italian 3052. GE cultures and ideas and diversity global studies course. Cross-listed in Italian.

Comparative Studies 3360 Introduction to Globalization and Culture

WF 9:35-10:55AM | McPherson Lab 2015 | Enrico Zammarchi

The course introduces students to the histories and principle themes defining the discourses and practices of globalization. Through weekly readings, lectures, documentary film extracts, and class discussions, the course will cover a range of debates concerning both the historical and contemporary meanings of globalization and its intersection with a number of related fields of research.

We will be asking not only “what is globalization?” (Its meanings and thematic concerns. How is it represented historically?) but “when is globalization?” (What are its origins? How do we begin to write its history?), “where is globalization? (How do we think the relation between the local, regional, and global? What are the geopolitical spaces of the global?), and “globalization for whom?” (Who experiences globalization and in what ways? Which voices speak for and against globalization?).

Comparative Studies 3603 Love in World Literature

Multiple Sections | Lucia Bortoli

Selected representations of love in different cultures and time periods. GE Literature and Diversity: Global Studies.Honors version.

Comparative Studies 3606 The Quest in World Literature

TuThu 3:55-5:15PM | Hagerty Hall 046 | Elizabeth Vu

Motif of the quest in world literature; physical and mental journeys as metaphors of personal transformation and salvation. GE Literature and Diversity: Global Studies.

Comparative Studies 3607 Film and Literature as Narrative Art

WF 11:30-12:25PM, M 11:30-1:35PM | Pomerene Hall 150, Baker Systems 180 | Kevin Pementel

Relationships between film and literature; emergence of cinematic art as a form of representation with emphasis on diverse cultural traditions. GE Visual and Performing Arts and Diversity: Global Studies. Honors version.

Comparative Studies 3608 Representations of the Experience of War

MWF 10:20-11:15AM | Mendenhall 125 | Susan Hanson

Representations of war in works of literature, religious texts, and film from diverse cultures and time periods. GE Literature and Diversity: Global Studies

Comparative Studies 3645 Cultures of Medicine

WF 12:45-2:05PM | Mendenhall 185 | Nancy Jesser

Humanistic, scientific, and clinical perspectives on medical issues; literary uses of medical themes; medicine as art and science. GE Cultures and Ideas and Diversity: Global Studies. Honors version.

Comparative Studies 3686 Cultural Studies of American Music

WF 2:20-3:40PM | Mendenhall 185 | Frank DiPiero

Investigation of the social, political, and cultural contexts of the development of popular musics in the U.S. GE Visual and Performing Arts and Diversity: Social Diversity in the US.

Comparative Studies 3903 World Literature: Theory and Practice

TuThu 9:35-10:55AM | Hayes Hall 005 | Ashley Perez

What does it mean to study literature in a global context? Is it simply a matter of reading more diversely, opening ourselves to what lies beyond our own national literary tradition? Or does it necessarily entail different priorities and approaches? Does world literature enrich our lives through cultural exchange? And what about the realities of “world” writers who can only access a significant audience by writing in English or producing works that “travel well” via translation? We will tackle these questions by examining theories of world literature and through the practice of reading a variety of literary works. We will also consider topics such as the rise of postcolonial literatures, the influence of prizes (like the Booker and the Nobel Prize for Literature), the impact of globalization, and the role of translation. Class assignments include reflective writing, in-class and online discussion, and one longer paper. Assignments will help you pursue the course goals and participate deeply in a community of learners. This section offers the option of embedded honors. Prerequisites: CS 2301 or CS 3302 or permission from the professor, who enthusiastically welcomes all students interested in a thoughtful exploration of the course topic. Please email perez.390@osu.edu with any questions.

Comparative Studies 4685 Ethnic and American Studies

TuThu 9:35-10:55AM | Enarson 206 | Maurice Stevens

Examines relationships between interdisciplinary fields of American Studies and Ethnic Studies.

Comparative Studies 4921 Intersections: Approaches to Race, Gender, Class, and Sexuality

M 2:15-5PM | Denney Hall 206 | Wendy Smooth

Examines intersections of race, gender, class, and sexuality in various sites within American culture (e.g., legal system, civil rights discourse, social justice movements). Not open to students with credit for 545, or AfAmAst 4921 (545), or WGSSt 4921 (545). Cross-listed in AfAmASt 4921 and WGSSt 4921.

Comparative Studies 4990 Senior Seminar

WF 12:45-2:05 | Hagerty Hall 451 | Barry Shank

Writing seminar based on students' independent research.  Prereq: 3990 (398), and 500 or 4000-level course in CompStd, and Senior standing, or permission of instructor. Not open to students with credit for 598.

Comparative Studies 5189S Field School

M 2:15-5:00PM | Denney Hall 245 | Cassie Patterson, Cristina Bendetti

Introduction to ethnographic field methods (participant-observation, writing field notes, photography, interviewing), archiving, and public humanities. An introduction to fieldwork is followed by a field experience (where students will reside together in local housing) followed by accessioning, exhibition planning, and reflection.

Religious Studies

Religious Studies 2102.02 Comparative Sacred Texts

WF 12:45-2:05PM | McPherson Lab 2017

This course will cover the sacred texts of a variety of religious traditions and the basic theories and methods for reading religious literature. We will examine texts not only from "mainstream" traditions such as Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism, but also materials from Native American traditions and  from new religious movements such as Scientology and Wicca. Students will also be introduced to basic theoretical tools for reading and interpreting sacred texts from multiple perspectives. In addition to lectures, films, and in-class discussions, the class will include field trips to a variety of religious sites in central Ohio. GE Literature and Diversity: Global Studies.

*Students will also need to pick a recitation.

Religious Studies 2370 Introduction to Comparative Religion

WF 11:10-12:30PM |  Arps Hall 012 | Melissa Curley

This course is intended to provide a general introduction to the comparative study of religion. Together we’ll explore seven religious traditions: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism, and the Yoruba religions of Africa and the African diaspora. We’ll look at how rituals shape the everyday lives of scholars and practitioners, we’ll compare what scholars and mystics say about how to live a good life, and we’ll tackle the question of what is (and isn’t) a religion.

The class is open to all students; no prior knowledge is assumed or required. It fulfills GE requirements in Cultures and Ideas and Diversity: Global Studies.

Religious Studies 3673 Buddhist Tradition

WF 2:20-3:40PM | McPherson Lab 2017 | Melissa Curley

Explore Buddhist philosophy and its influence on the cultures and politics of Asia. Meditation, magic, martial arts, and mountain hermits. India, Thailand, China, Tibet, Japan, and Ohio.

Religious Studies 3666 Magic in the Modern World

TuThu 12:45-2:05PM | McPherson Lab 2015 | Hugh Urban

Since the end of the nineteenth century, there has been a tremendous revival of interest in magic, witchcraft, and paganism throughout the United States, England and Europe.  This course will trace the modern revival of magic and neo-paganism, both in new religious movements and in popular culture, novels, music and film, from roughly the 1870s to the present.  The course is designed as the sequel to the popular course, “Magic and Witchcraft in the Middle Ages and Renaissance” (MEDREN 2666). However, students are also encouraged to take this course either before or without MEDREN 2666.

The course will explore the roots of modern magic in late medieval and early modern sources, and then trace the development of modern magical movements such as the Golden Dawn, Wicca, and modern Druidism. Along the way, it will also examine the intersections between these magical groups and various social and political movements, such as second wave and radical feminism and various forms of environmentalism from the 1960s onward. We will also discuss the backlash against modern magic among Evangelical Christians, as well as the “Satanic Panic” that spread across the U.S. in the 1980s. Finally, in the last section of the course, we will also examine the role of magic in popular culture, fiction, film and television, through heavy metal music and works such as The Lord of the Rings, the Chronicles of Narnia, Harry Potter, The Magicians, and others.

In addition to close readings of primary and secondary texts, the course will also include guest speakers and several field trips to local neo-pagan events. Students will develop a final group project on a topic of their own choosing to be presented to the class during the last two weeks of the semester.

Religious Studies 3680 Religion and Law in Comparative Perspective

MW 12:45-2:05PM | Ramseyer Hall 115 | Isaac Weiner

These days, it is almost impossible to go online or watch TV without learning about a conflict at the intersection of religion and law: Should creationism be taught in public schools? Should religious symbols be displayed in public? Should religious store-owners be allowed to refuse to provide services for a same-sex marriage? These conflicts raise critical questions about the meaning of secularism and religious freedom; about religion’s proper place in American life; and about how we understand what it means to be an American.

Yet as contentious as these questions are in the contemporary United States, they have been addressed in different ways in other times and places. In this course, we will develop tools for thinking critically about these issues by adopting a comparative, interdisciplinary approach. Drawing on concrete cases, historical studies, and theoretical literature, we will explore how the relationship between religion and law has been configured differently in different liberal democracies and what this might mean for contemporary debates. Team-taught w/ faculty in History.

Prereq: Not open to students with credit for History 3680. GE historical study and diversity global studies course. Cross-listed in History.

Religious Studies 3972 Theory and Method in the Study of Religion

WF 2:20-3:40PM | Ramseyer Hall 166

Survey of contemporary theories and methods used in the academic study of religion. Prereq: 2370 (270) or 2370H (270H) or equiv. Not open to students with credit for RelStds 4972 or CompStd 4972 (520).